6.8 Western

RBanta66

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You can only seat to the lands or as you called it jam. Thats why some lengthen there throats so they can maximize case capacity. More bullet in the case, it takes up valuable room for more powder. If your new to reloading as I was a few years ago it is something you will learn. That's why many get custom barrels done with the free bore they desire. Read the cartridge guide for the 300wm, it will explain a lot about case capacity. Much of the info can cross over to other cases.

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Western

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If it was me after what I've learned here on LRO I would lengthen the throat to maximize the case capacity. Ryan did a video on that last year. More powder is more horse power.

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I did purchase a 6.8 Western reamer. After load testing and if I have poor results, I will use the reamer to give me a little more free bore If needed. But, by giving more free bore we may limit using other 270 WSM factory ammo. I do lots of reloading and honestly believe we should be able to obtain the same results as the 6.8 with these COLs, but will need to adjust powder loads. i also have the option to rechamber to 6.8 Western, just remove 1/2“ from the Barrel if I am not satisfied with the outcome in 270.
 

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I did purchase a 6.8 Western reamer. After load testing and if I have poor results, I will use the reamer to give me a little more free bore If needed. But, by giving more free bore we may limit using other 270 WSM factory ammo. I do lots of reloading and honestly believe we should be able to obtain the same results as the 6.8 with these COLs, but will need to adjust powder loads. i also have the option to rechamber to 6.8 Western, just remove 1/2“ from the Barrel if I am not satisfied with the outcome in 270.
I would think you'll be just fine with your barrel twist rate. Looking forward to your results.

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Thank you for all for your comments, very helpful and thoughtful. I am a 300 Win Mag guy, but with my last name being Western I jumped at building a 6.8 Western. And wanted it for this years deer hunt. Could not get 6.8 die set, so went as a start with wild cat 270 WSM.
 

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I have 2 270 rifles and I'm thinking of getting my older action trued and blue printed then ordering a 1-8 twist 270wsm with proper free bore to shoot the longer bullets. I'll talk with a gunsmith and get it all figured out when I'm ready. Using a long action so I don't have to worry about mag length. Should be fun. Good luck!!

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I have 2 270 rifles and I'm thinking of getting my older action trued and blue printed then ordering a 1-8 twist 270wsm with proper free bore to shoot the longer bullets. I'll talk with a gunsmith and get it all figured out when I'm ready. Using a long action so I don't have to worry about mag length. Should be fun. Good luck!!

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Great project. I was the first 270 request of Brux barrels in Lodi, WI for a 7 1/2 twist. As such when they made my Rem Varmint barrel, they made 4 more. Just over $300. i ordered mine about Jan. 25, fortunately they were setting up to make 270 barrels the following week, so got my barrel quickly. Otherwise typically I have a three to four month wait For my barrels. I am actually thinking about buying another 270 and rechamber in the 6.8. From my experiences custom barrels are more accurate than barrels on factory guns. There are though exceptions.
 

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These new Browning rifles seem to be pretty accurate. I've seen some great reviews on them. There only limiting factor is mag length and from what I've come to learn better to build on a long action.

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Results from my first shooting and load testing of the 270 WSM with a 7 1/2” barrel twist. No problem with powder capacity in the 270 WSM to achieve velocities over 3,000 fps with all of the 6.8 Western identified bullets, 165 Nosler AB LR, 175 Sierra TGK and the 170 Berger Elite. No overpressure issues, and still room for more powder. Load testing with 3 bullets each was at 200 yards, all shot 1 1/2” groups or less. This was my first time shooting the rifle, so load test were without refinement. I am reluctant to go any higher in loading without more published data. The 140 and 150 gr bullets had similar results, but the 130 gr bullets had no better groups than a 3”. I wonder if that is the fast twist or just my gun. From my initial shooting, I honestly think the 270 WSM with a 7 1/2” twist, will shoot as well if not out shoot the 6.8 Western. My barrel is a Brux 26” Rem Varmint barrel with a muzzle brake rebarreled on a Winchester 70. Bullets were seated at 15/1000 off the lands, but did not exceed 2.965” COL [Maximum Magazine Length]. Powders used, H414, H4350 and H4831SC. Powder for the heavier bullets, I am considering H4831SC, but saw little difference between the the powders. I am ready for the fall deer hunt, and if really really fortunate maybe an Elk hunt. Only question is the bullet type to use … currently leaning to the Berger 170 Elite, two of the three bullets shot were in the same hole at 200 yards, just luck but nice to see.
 

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Pretty decent results, you should really try RL 26 for those heavier bullets. When I change bullet, powder, primer, or brass I am now doing a pressure test to find my max pressure. When doing this I typically find that 1 to 1.5 grain window that my rifle really likes. I then go to the OCW testing as it really narrows down as to what the rifle prefers. Then I work on seating depth to fine tune that load. There is a ton of info on the OCW testing and the ladder/ pressure test (as they can be done simultaneously) here on LRO. However I like the data you have so far. Keep at it and let us know your final thoughts as you progress your load development.
 

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Pretty decent results, you should really try RL 26 for those heavier bullets. When I change bullet, powder, primer, or brass I am now doing a pressure test to find my max pressure. When doing this I typically find that 1 to 1.5 grain window that my rifle really likes. I then go to the OCW testing as it really narrows down as to what the rifle prefers. Then I work on seating depth to fine tune that load. There is a ton of info on the OCW testing and the ladder/ pressure test (as they can be done simultaneously) here on LRO. However I like the data you have so far. Keep at it and let us know your final thoughts as you progress your load development.


i use the optimal charge weight (OCW) in finding my charge loads, typically looking at two or three of the nodes. It is not though fool proof. Two years ago I had an upper node that I selected and used for my 6 Creedmoor using H4350. I did the development in April when the temperature was 40 degrees. I shoot weekly 600 and 1000 yards, so I shoot in all conditions. My 6 Creedmoor shot perfect into July when temperature was under 85. Once the temperature hit 90 degrees I started to blow primers. It was a total surprise to me as I check my primers after each prior shoot. I was not above the maximum allowable, but well under. Never had any prior pressure issues. Had to choose a lower node for my loading. So I am very cautious when considering loads in the upper nodes. Interesting enough did check velocities at the higher temperature, no significant difference at the elevated temperature. My research on the issue didn’t lead me to any conclusions, except every gun is different. My friends shooting the same load had no issues.
 

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I have never had that issue, guess I've been lucky so far. I do try to limit my shooting in the summer heat to the early hours. The humidity gets to unbearable here in south east Virginia, I've lived here to 40 yrs and still hate the humidity. Back to your rifle, sounds like you got it under control I definitely will keep following as I'm very interested in your results.

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Just so you know, H414 is not temperature stable. I like the way that powder throws, but because of the reasons mentioned I only use temperature stable powders. So far, I haven't had any problems.
 

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Just some more info to pass on. Also give RL23 a try. In my shooting and testing it's normally around 50fps slower than RL-26 but a very temp stable powder. I've gotten some great consistent groups with my 7mm rem mag using this powder.

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Results from my first shooting and load testing of the 270 WSM with a 7 1/2” barrel twist. No problem with powder capacity in the 270 WSM to achieve velocities over 3,000 fps with all of the 6.8 Western identified bullets, 165 Nosler AB LR, 175 Sierra TGK and the 170 Berger Elite. No overpressure issues, and still room for more powder. Load testing with 3 bullets each was at 200 yards, all shot 1 1/2” groups or less. This was my first time shooting the rifle, so load test were without refinement. I am reluctant to go any higher in loading without more published data. The 140 and 150 gr bullets had similar results, but the 130 gr bullets had no better groups than a 3”. I wonder if that is the fast twist or just my gun. From my initial shooting, I honestly think the 270 WSM with a 7 1/2” twist, will shoot as well if not out shoot the 6.8 Western. My barrel is a Brux 26” Rem Varmint barrel with a muzzle brake rebarreled on a Winchester 70. Bullets were seated at 15/1000 off the lands, but did not exceed 2.965” COL [Maximum Magazine Length]. Powders used, H414, H4350 and H4831SC. Powder for the heavier bullets, I am considering H4831SC, but saw little difference between the the powders. I am ready for the fall deer hunt, and if really really fortunate maybe an Elk hunt. Only question is the bullet type to use … currently leaning to the Berger 170 Elite, two of the three bullets shot were in the same hole at 200 yards, just luck but nice to see.
Loading Update - 270 WSM with 7½ twist . I focused on H4831SC powder, safely bringing the following three long range bullets up to 3000 fps. At that velocity none of the brass showed any signs of stress. There is still room for additional powder in all three if necessary. Load test were three (3) shot groups at 200 yards, were about ½ MOA. I did pull one shot, that group had 1½ MOA. If I ignore that shot group the other two rounds were ½ MOA. These are not fine-tuned loadings, but rather going up ½ gr looking for brass overpressure issues to safely reach 3000 fps for each bullet. This is maximum velocities I have seen for the “6.8 Western” cartridge data or on any of the ammo boxes.

Next I will be fine tune loads for each bullet using H4831SC. All were loaded about 15/1000 off the lande or 2.965 [magazine fit]. As suggested, I looked for but could not locate any RE26. I used Hodgdon web tool for determining Starting and Maximum Loads and Berger provided loading information on the Elite Hunter bullet.

175 Sierra Tipped Game King – 2.965 COL Average Velocity 3000 fps

170 Berger Elite Hunter – 2.965 COL Average Velocity 3075 fps

165 Nosler AccuBond Long Range – 2.900 COL Average Velocity 3175 fps

I am feeling very good about this rifle rebuild with a 7½ twist and know I can obtain the same results as the 6.8 Western. And can do better because I reload and can finetune the powder load and seating depth. My initial concern was powder capacity in the 270 as the bullet could not be seated out as far as the 6.8, but not an issue with a Winchester or Savage. The only question [on possible advantage] I have is “efficiency” … Is the 6.8 Western more efficient than the 270 WSM with a 7½ twist barrel. Question for a reloader … Does the 6.8 Western need less or more powder to achieve the same velocities as a rebarreled 270 WSM?
 

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Can't help with the question of efficiency. However, H4831SC is a favorite powder of mine. I have been using it for well over 15 years in my 25-06. Funny enough that is also the case I tried H414 in several years ago.
 

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Just so you know, H414 is not temperature stable. I like the way that powder throws, but because of the reasons mentioned I only use temperature stable powders. So far, I haven't had any problems.
I agree with you temperature satiability with H414, but have used it for years. I test it for all temperatures in our 300 win mags used for our Wisconsin Deer hunts. Longest shot I will have is 400 yards. Whether it is 15 degrees or 45 degrees, I have not experienced any more than 1" difference at 400 yards. Yes, see more difference in the hot weather, especially above 90 degrees. I will only use it in the 140 or 150gr bullets for my rebarreled 270 WSM, everything else I will use a more stable powder. If one is taking a 800 yard shot, I think use of a stable powder is absolutely mandatory.
 

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Factory Winchester offerings: 165ABLR MV2970, 170Ballistic silver tip mv2920, Browning 175Tipped Gameking mv2835. Looking at your data your already getting greater MV same bullets. As far as efficiency not sure how you quantify that in the early life of the 6.8. We know the WSM case holds more powder and as a hunter of course accuracy is king but more MV and accuracy is in my eyes even better yet. So far it looks like your test show that the 270wsm can and does hit harder and out runs the 6.8 Western. Awesome results so far!

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Factory Winchester offerings: 165ABLR MV2970, 170Ballistic silver tip mv2920, Browning 175Tipped Gameking mv2835. Looking at your data your already getting greater MV same bullets. As far as efficiency not sure how you quantify that in the early life of the 6.8. We know the WSM case holds more powder and as a hunter of course accuracy is king but more MV and accuracy is in my eyes even better yet. So far it looks like your test show that the 270wsm can and does hit harder and out runs the 6.8 Western. Awesome results so far!

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I am also pleased with the results, it was what I hoped for. As mentioned earlier I also have a 6.8 Western reamer. I went with the 270 WSM instead, because it is impossible to get a set of 6.8 dies. I have a 26" barrel. All I would have to do is cut a 1/4" off of the barrel and rebore and would have a 6.8. But with these results, why would I want to do that. There are many factory loads available for the 270 WSM that I can now use, a much more versatile gun. The only drawback is it can't shoot bullets less than 130 gr. I shot a few groups with a 130 bullets, best I had is a one MOA group. This is adequate for a white tail deer hunt where 99% of the shots are under 100 yards. I would think most reloaders would go with a 270 WSM with 7.5 twist. Think about this , it also opens the door for the 270 Winchester cartridge. Why not rebarrel a 270 Winchester with these new bullets available. If I had a 270 Winchester sitting in the gun closet, it would be my next project.
 

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I have a 270win that I'm going to rebarreling to a 270WSM but I'll have the freebore set close to the pic I posted earlier. This should open up the 150ABLR as a great deer bullet. I've loaded them for my 270win getting only 3/4 moa mv 2875. I've also killed a couple deer with them the longest only being 100yds but all dropped within 30yds. It's just been a known factor that the 270 caliber of rifles suffered from the 1-10 twist for heavier bullets. I'll probably do a 1-8 when I get ready to build. Just need to pick what barrel manufacturer I would liked to use. I appreciate your updates, awesome data to boot!....... Ron

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Western

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I have a 270win that I'm going to rebarreling to a 270WSM but I'll have the freebore set close to the pic I posted earlier. This should open up the 150ABLR as a great deer bullet. I've loaded them for my 270win getting only 3/4 moa mv 2875. I've also killed a couple deer with them the longest only being 100yds but all dropped within 30yds. It's just been a known factor that the 270 caliber of rifles suffered from the 1-10 twist for heavier bullets. I'll probably do a 1-8 when I get ready to build. Just need to pick what barrel manufacturer I would liked to use. I appreciate your updates, awesome data to boot!....... Ron

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Ron,

A few thoughts on rebarreling a 270 Win to a 270 WSM or 6.8 Western.

Did you consider just rebarreling your 270 Win with a 7½” or 8” Twist? The cost would on be $300 for a barrel and $200 for gunsmith to chamber for you. If the 270 WSM can handle these larger grain bullets, I would think the 270 Win may as well.

You could do some testing to see if you have adequate COL and powder capacity for the high twist bullets. If you have the 270 die set, you could measure the max COL and develop a couple of dummy cartridges to see if they eject and see how much powder of RL26 fits into the case. We know the powder used in the 270 WSM, it will be close enough to see if your 270 can potentially shoot these high twist bullets.

It is quite costly to rechamber a 270 Win to a 270 WSM. New bolt, ejector, etc. I think it is worth the effort to see if a rebarred 270 Win will work. Let’s say you have it rebarreled and it does not work, you could have the barrel rechamberd to a 270 WSM or 6.8 Western at a later time.

Jeff
 

RBanta66

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Ron,

A few thoughts on rebarreling a 270 Win to a 270 WSM or 6.8 Western.

Did you consider just rebarreling your 270 Win with a 7½” or 8” Twist? The cost would on be $300 for a barrel and $200 for gunsmith to chamber for you. If the 270 WSM can handle these larger grain bullets, I would think the 270 Win may as well.

You could do some testing to see if you have adequate COL and powder capacity for the high twist bullets. If you have the 270 die set, you could measure the max COL and develop a couple of dummy cartridges to see if they eject and see how much powder of RL26 fits into the case. We know the powder used in the 270 WSM, it will be close enough to see if your 270 can potentially shoot these high twist bullets.

It is quite costly to rechamber a 270 Win to a 270 WSM. New bolt, ejector, etc. I think it is worth the effort to see if a rebarred 270 Win will work. Let’s say you have it rebarreled and it does not work, you could have the barrel rechamberd to a 270 WSM or 6.8 Western at a later time.

Jeff
Jeff
I actually have 2 270 rifles, bought a ADL in 89 and then bought the limited production Rem 700 CDL Boone & Crockett in 09. I have been playing with 150ABLR's and only able to get 3/4 moa at best but I'm going to start that test over after I'm done with the 140 Berger load I'm finalizing. There is a company called Unknown Munitions that will do load development and sells ammo. They are loading the 165ABLR and getting 2925mv, I know that's actually pretty darn good. Your blowing that out of the park with the 270wsm your testing. Don't get me wrong the 270win is a great cartridge but so is the WSM and the WBY has also crossed my mind. Case capacity is a big factor in my decision, Noslers reloading Manuel list the 270 at 63.8 h20 270wsm 72.9 h20. Then there's the WBY at 79.8 h20, thats another limiting factor against the 270win. All are really good options. I do like your idea of just rebarreling with a higher twist barrel, definitely something to think on. But I'm not against also doing a full custom either. I just know this, I have lots of options.

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