The little cartridge is pretty fun. My general impressions, as I have stated them before on this site, are as follows:
"Honestly, I think the reason folks don't get the 6.8 SPC, is because it is so well balanced. It is not an extreme cartridge. It is not optimized for ultimate velocity. It is not optimized for ultimate energy dump. It is not optomised for high bc paper punching. It is not specialized in any one direction. It IS incredibly well balanced to perform RELIABLY within the short and light envelope of an AR type action while maintaining acceptable accuracy, range, velocity, and power to put down aggressive actors. Lucky for us, that makes it a wonderful medium game round in light and handy carbines (my personal favorite is my Ruger Mini chambered in 6.8!)
These days, folks focus on one thing at a time and forget about versatility and balance."
With my children growing up (the oldest is twelve now) and starting to enjoy shooting more with me, I am actually growing more fond of our little balanced cartridge. I don't think I could ever come up with a better low recoil round that still carries plenty of punch at reasonable ranges. Completely reliable and drama free shooting for a first time hunter. I think I am going to have to get a light weight 18" upper from Constructor for my daughter so I can reclaim my 6.8 Mini-14!
The 6.8SPC has performance appeal. Nearly 80% of the power of the 7.62 X 51 NATO with considerably smaller case size and bullet weight along with reduced recoil. Plus it fits the AR15 platform for reduced weight. It's a nearly perfect combination. Add to that, less than MOA accuracy easily obtained. The only drawback is reduced availability of ammo.
What Harles said: a well balanced mild recoil all around cartridge. This is why it will endure long after the 6.5 crowd has sold off their uppers for the latest greatest new hot cartridge. Just like the 30-30 and 10mm quality effectiveness insure their survival. There is of course the expected 6.8mm super NEW cartridge that will be in production as the new American military cartridge. In the long run, I really believe the 6.8 spc will survive simply cause it works so well.
For me its that general purpose appeal. I can see my self in pretty much any situation and the 6.8 would handle the job. Especially when you start hand loading to the SPC II, its not even close anymore IMO.
It does the job its intended to do. Low recoil, very accurate, and lethal on whitetail. Most of my shots are inside 200 yds but I will confidently take one at 300. And I have much more confidence in this round as a man stopper than any other ar15 round. If I want to punch paper I use my 5.56, if I need to put something on the ground the 6.8 is my pick!
Got a little time in my Ruger Mini 6.8 and was surprised how well it shoots compared to my MiNi 14. It's softer recoil and getting decent groups with Rem fmj ammo even the awful conditions I was shooting. Looking forward to shooting it again this week with some Hornady SST to see the real accuracy.
Devil Phish : hope you get good results with the sst load. Have 2 friends with mini 6.8s. One shoots SSTs about 1.5" at 100yds, the other one is all over the place with them. Both shoot S&B pts pretty good, about 1.25 to 1.75. Good shooting !
A few years ago, my arm was twisted to take a good look at this cartridge for all the reasons mentioned above. I went for it and have not looked back. It is certainly my favorite go-to, all around cartridge. I’m not yet feeling impelled to join the short barreled crowd. I have a “long” 18” barrel, but my handloads and rifle shoot accurately, consistently, and reliably. I am confident my setup can handle the widest variety of needs for any single weapon, which is why it’s my #1.
The general appeal to me was that back in 08 and even to this day the six eight has never been a bandwagon cartridge fueled off clever marketing and what not....it was taken into custody by those that care most about what works after being hijacked and dumped overboard by those who do not.
The round grew into a formidable cartridge at close, medium and long range...while others have faded or taken a back seat. Reading "TIME FOR A CHANGE" by Dr Gary Roberts really opened my eyes to the reality of terminal performance and the reality that this round could be the "be all end all" ….after buying, building and shooting several 6.8 rigs I am thoroughly convinced. I remember a time a few years back me and a recon acquaintance of mine at the time took some EPUPs out to shoot....the target would routinely reset after hit with 5.56 but after being struck once with a Hornady v-max the target failed to reset.... it wasn't till we walked 150 yds to the target to reset it that it finally decided to lift itself up.... one of many moments of truth for me.
I was initially going to go for the 6.5 G over the 6.8, but not having the money and working myself half to death, I revisited both cartridges. After extensive research, it became clear to me that the way to go was the 6.8 SPC. I love it and won't take anything over it. I have the Ruger Mini 6.8 as does my youngest son. We find it accurate and as always very reliable. I'm a 6.8 SPC fan for life! Just on a side note, the M1 Garand was initially designed to shoot a 270 cartridge, imagine that, now the military has finally decided to revisit it. Out to 300m what more do you need? I would even venture to say 400m with the right hand loads. De Oppresso Librer