Handloads: 6.5 mm PRC For Big Game

by
posted on February 16, 2022
6.5 mm PRC

The 6.5 mm PRC boasts higher velocities and more downrange energy than the 6.5 mm Creedmoor, and with the proper projectile, this cartridge can humanely dispatch big game, even at extended distances. That’s the concept behind Berger’s 156-grain Extreme Outer Limits Elite Hunter bullet, which is exceptionally heavy for caliber and offers a G1 BC of 0.679.

6.5 mm PRC specsA handful of companies make dies for 6.5 mm PRC, but I found Forster’s to size the case just enough for smooth chambering without completely losing its fireform. Also, these dies are now zinc-plated to better resist corrosion. Although data is not yet abundant for this bullet, Quickload suggests a starting charge weight of 53.5 grains of VihtaVuori N565 with a maximum charge weight of 59.7 grains. When using Hornady cases, I found that anything more than 57.5 grains resulted in a compressed load, but at 56.5 grains, the bullet just touched the powder column when seated to an OAL of 2.900". Magnum primers are not recommended for this powder, and I’ve had no problem using the Federal 210. This recipe produced an average group size of 1.28" during 100-yard testing and resulted in manageable recoil. During this test, my chronograph recorded a muzzle velocity of 2,727 f.p.s. with a paltry 6.6 standard deviation and only 14 f.p.s. of extreme spread.

This load will need only 9.75 m.o.a. of come-up to impact a 500-yard target. At that range, expect 1,533 ft.-lbs. of energy—still within the threshold to responsibly down game as large as elk. Best of all, it does a terrific job of bucking the wind.

—Frank Melloni

Latest

Josey Wales
Josey Wales

“I Reckon So”: The Guns Of “The Outlaw Josey Wales”

It was one of the most iconic Western films of all time, starring one of the most successful actor/directors of all time—and it immortalized one of the most historic handguns ever made. Today, they all live on in the wildly popular exhibit “Hollywood Guns.”

The Armed Citizen® March 4, 2024

Read today's "The Armed Citizen" entry for real stories of law-abiding citizens, past and present, who used their firearms to save lives.

Preview: ATI Monte Carlo Enfield Stock Set

Gone are the days when firearm enthusiasts routinely “sporterized” full-stocked military-surplus rifles such as the No. 1, Mk III Lee-Enfield, but many examples of previously cut-down and modified rifles can be found at bargain prices in gun shops across America.

European Countries See Rise In Firearm Training, Ownership

A trend gaining momentum after Russia’s unprovoked 2022 invasion of Ukraine made headlines this month when Finland announced it was establishing 300 additional public shooting ranges.

Preview: ROAM Adventure Co. 55L Rugged Case

The ROAM 55L Rugged Case provides adventure-bound firearm enthusiasts with a premium heavy-duty storage option.

Choosing .22 LR Match Ammunition: What You Need To Know

Looking to improve the accuracy of your cherished .22 LR? Simple: use match-grade ammunition. Before committing to a bulk-buy, though, read these tips, as not all competition-worthy ammunition is right for your rifle.

Interests



Get the best of American Rifleman delivered to your inbox.