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Discussion Starter #1
I know the 6.8 ammo is more costly than say 5.56 and mags too but has anybody here built a 6.8 with actually training with it or does everybody use theirs for hunting and bench type shooting? I've yet to see a thread indicating the former.
My plan is to use it to train just like I do with my 5.56 guns. Once I get it tuned and I know it's right, work up a load that gets me combat accuracy or better hopefully, that I can then reproduce in mass, round up the mags for a decent load out and sight it in to my liking I plan to rotate between my 5.56 and this.
I'm hoping the Barnes 110gr tax, 90gr gold dot that I've bought a boatload of will result in an effective combat load. I've bought powders aplenty to experiment with and a bunch of FMJ for training.
What about everyone else, hunting, recreation or serious work.
 

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My 6.8 is my dedicated pig gun. Ammo/reloading component costs would prevent me from using it as a trainer. I've literally got thousands of 64gr Speer Gold Dot ammo, and MK 318 Mod 0 ammo for my 5.56 rifles (not to mention a ton of 55gr FMJ). I also have a few .308s, so no need to transform another rifle/caliber into a "combat" role.

Not saying that the 6.8 isn't a good cartridge for your wants...I think that's why it was developed. I'm sure that within reasonable ranges it will perform wonderfully. However there are quite a few .224 bullets on the market today that significantly improve the lethality of the 5.56.

The 6.8 also has a few handicaps when it comes to long range target shooting. I really think its wheelhouse is in killing medium-sized game out to about 250 yards in a fairly lightweight and handy package.

As always, someone else's mileage may vary.
 

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All of the above and I don't have much use for a 308 any more. I would rather carry a 6.8 with 130s than a 308 with 149s.
 

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My 6.8 was going to be my deer hunting rifle to replace my Remington R-25 (AR style) .308 due to being lighter, shorter, and easier to carry and maneuver. However, after killing a couple of deer with her AR-15 in .223 and not getting an exit or much blood trail from her last buck, my wife decided that the 6.8 is HER new deer rifle. I recently got a new AR-15 in 350 Legend that will be my new deer rifle. I can also use it when I go back to hunt in Ohio (straight wall only for rifles there). I hunt in the woods and the vast majority of my shots are 100 yards or less so it should work well.
 

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DEER DEER DEER... and if I see anything else legal to shoot....
Both Season use... Missouri alternative season allows me to use my 10.5 SBR as long as I change the stock to my arm brace.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Unfortunately I dont hunt anymore, maybe I'll start again. I do own 96 acres in WV, more bear than deer I think, man the black bears are thick.
I had an AR in 308 awhile back and sold it, I think I prefer my 308 bolt guns. I know that there are bullets out there that will enlarge the lethality envelope of the 5.56 round and I have many of them, the mk318 both mod0 and mod1, TBBC, Gold Dot, Fusions, the 77gr SMK, Barnes TTSX, the GMX. All are fantastic bullets that I enjoy loading and shooting but I really have wanted to try something, anything, with just a little bigger hole and after hearing about the 6.8 a few years back I just always thought it seemed like a fine candidate. I almost jumped on the 224Val boat but didnt. I'm not looking for, or expecting longer distance lethality, just more of it, not that I'd enjoy getting shot with either.
If I can shake this 6.8 rig out and make it run like I can make a 5.56 gun run, with the same reliability and even half the accuracy I'll be a happy camper, a poorer camper, but a happy camper. I've just been wondering though if I'm the only idiot who has tried this or if there are others and hear their experiences.
I mean, if the AR platform, with the decades of development and refinements ,the selection of super quality parts available to today's builder, being able to reload a tuned load, if I cant use all of that to develop a reliable hard use rifle with a bit more lethality I'll be truly surprised. Would it be the one I grabbed to run out the door with? Maybe not but the question knows at me. It's the reason I bought the heavier profile barrel from H, and the Superbolt, and the inconel gastube along with all the other parts for this build, with an eye towards lots of use and durability, and I thought "This is Merica, why not".
Super happy with the barrel by the way. I see you posted above so maybe you'll see this.
 

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You can definitely get a 6.8 to run as reliably and accurately as as a 5.56. Knock on wood My Ambush Arms has over 400 rounds through it in the field. It is a solid MOA shooter with factory Hornady SST, and I've never put anything else through it. Recoil with a good brake makes the gun shoot about as soft as a lighter-weight 5.56 with a birdcage flash hider. I do put a lot of maintenance into my rifle...it gets a thorough cleaning each time I open a new box of ammo (so about every 20 rounds fired).

It does leave a bigger hole, but by no means hits like Thor's hammer. Big heart shot hogs still make it 30-40 yards, and unless you hit the CNS you can expect to have to pump several rounds into them. However, from what I've seen on pigs so far it does offer some increased lethality with subpar hits over the 5.56. I would expect this to be true with two-legged varmints as well, and again, I am reasonably sure that is why this cartridge exists in the first place. A well-rinning 6.8 would make a fine combat rifle if one didn't have to worry about logistics.
 

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My 6.8 is a dedicated deer/hog rifle. Hornady 120 sat. Shot placement is key with any round. I've only had one deer take a step with it and it was my fault. It only went 30 yards and piled up. It shoots sub moa with 18" ARP barrel and JAL muzzle. I've had zero issues after debugging a minor issue when first built. Weak extractor spring.
 

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My 6.8 is my go to hunting rifle for deer and black bear. I used to always hunt with a bolt action 308 but ever since I built my 6.8, 4 years ago the 308 has sat in the gun cabinet. Where I hunt is pretty thick with not many shots over a 100 yards so 6.8 is perfect and I enjoy not losing the Animal in my scope after I shoot. People tell my I'm crazy hunting bear with such a "little" cartridge but i have no doubt the cbb 120 mkz with put down a bear. Obviously shot placement is always key. I don't do much tactical type training but I set up a 8 inch gong at different distances and practice all types of shooting situations i might encounter while hunting. I built a 270msr this year and that might be my new favorite hunting rifle but it's longer and heavier than my 6.8 so if I'm hiking around the mountains in warmer weather I still prefer the 6.8.
 

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I know the 6.8 ammo is more costly than say 5.56 and mags too but has anybody here built a 6.8 with actually training with it or does everybody use theirs for hunting and bench type shooting? I've yet to see a thread indicating the former.
My plan is to use it to train just like I do with my 5.56 guns. Once I get it tuned and I know it's right, work up a load that gets me combat accuracy or better hopefully, that I can then reproduce in mass, round up the mags for a decent load out and sight it in to my liking I plan to rotate between my 5.56 and this.
I'm hoping the Barnes 110gr tax, 90gr gold dot that I've bought a boatload of will result in an effective combat load. I've bought powders aplenty to experiment with and a bunch of FMJ for training.
What about everyone else, hunting, recreation or serious work.
I primarily use my both my 6.8's for killing feral hogs and range shooting. Shooting the hogs I use Hornady 120 SST and S&B 110 BTHP.. At the range I am shooting Hornady 110 Gr. BTHP, PPU 115 Gr. BTHP and Sellier & Beloit 110 Gr. BTHP. This selection of ammo is very accurate out to 500 Meters. Of these types of ammo, the Hornady 120 Gr. SST is excellent due to it's BC of .4 at 500 Meters. The S&B is by far the hottest of the factory loads I have fired, it is almost 80 FPS faster than the Hornady 110 Gr, see chart below. At any rate, our range goes out to three thousand meters and I have not attempted to go past 500 M with these rifles.
BDC Chart 6.8MM - Vortex Viper PST FFP 4-16 x 50 & 5-25 x 50
MRADRange/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:
Mfg:PPU100200300400500600
Grains:115ZeroBTHPHuntingBison Armory 18" BarrelBC - .331
FPS:2,4832,2301,9951,7761,5751,3951,243
Energy/Ft.Lb.:1,5701,2701,016805633498394
BDC:Elevation:0.00.81.83.14.76.6
BDC:Windage:0.00.20.30.50.81.0
TOT/Sec:5mph-90 deg0.130.270.430.610.811.04
MRADRange/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:
Mfg:Hornady100200300400500600
Grains:110ZeroBTHPTargetBison Armory 18" BarrelBC - .375
FPS:2,5862,3612,1471,9451,7561,5801,422
Energy/Ft.Lb.:1,6331,3611,126924753510494
BDC:Elevation:0.00.71.62.74.05.5
BDC:Windage:0.10.30.40.60.81.0
TOT/Sec:5mph-90 deg0.120.230.400.560.740.94
MRADRange/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:
Mfg:S&B100200300400500600
Grains:110ZeroBTHPHunting/TgtBison Armory 18" BarrelBC - .331
FPS:2,6642,3942,1411,9031,6841,4861,313
Energy/Ft.Lb.:1,7331,4001,119884693539421
BDC:Elevation:0.00.31.62.74.05.7
BDC:Windage:0.20.30.50.71.01.2
TOT/Sec:5mph-90 deg0.120.250.400.570.760.97
BDC Chart 6.8MM - Vortex Viper PST FFP 4-16 x 50 & 5-25 x 50
MRADRange/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:
Mfg:Hornady100200300400500600
Grains:110ZeroBTHPTargetBison Armory 16" BarrelBC - .375
FPS:2,5822,3522,1351,9291,7371,5601,400
Energy/Ft.Lb.:1,6281,3511,113909737594479
BDC:Elevation:0.00.71.62.74.05.6
BDC:Windage:0.10.30.40.60.81.0
TOT/Sec:5mph-90 deg0.120.260.400.570.760.96
MRADRange/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:
Mfg:S&B100200300400500600
Grains:110ZeroBTHPHuntingBison Armory 16" BarrelBC - .37
FPS:2,6182,3912,1761,9731,7811,6041,443
Energy/Ft.Lb.:1,6741,3961,156951775628509
BDC:Elevation:0.00.61.52.63.95.3
BDC:Windage:0.10.30.40.60.81.0
TOT/Sec:5mph-90 deg0.120.250.400.560.730.93
MRADRange/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:Range/Yds:
Mfg:Hornady100200300400500600
Grains:120ZeroBT-SSTHuntingBison Armory 18" BarrelBC - .40
FPS:2,5002,2932,0961,9091,7341,5711,423
Energy/Ft.Lb.:1,6651,4011,170971801658539
BDC:Elevation:0.00.71.72.84.25.7
BDC:Windage:0.10.30.40.60.81.0
TOT/Sec:5mph-90 deg0.130.260.410.570.760.96
 

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Bought mine specifically for hunting pigs, and I know it will be fine for deer too. Turns out I shoot it just as well if not better than my bolt action hunting rifles, so it's also quite a bit of fun on the range. I'm enjoying developing hand loads for it.
 

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I know the 6.8 ammo is more costly than say 5.56 and mags too but has anybody here built a 6.8 with actually training with it or does everybody use theirs for hunting and bench type shooting? I've yet to see a thread indicating the former.
My plan is to use it to train just like I do with my 5.56 guns. Once I get it tuned and I know it's right, work up a load that gets me combat accuracy or better hopefully, that I can then reproduce in mass, round up the mags for a decent load out and sight it in to my liking I plan to rotate between my 5.56 and this.
I'm hoping the Barnes 110gr tax, 90gr gold dot that I've bought a boatload of will result in an effective combat load. I've bought powders aplenty to experiment with and a bunch of FMJ for training.
What about everyone else, hunting, recreation or serious work.


Its a hunting death stick for sure. Train with cheap 5.56 then use 6.8 for serious work.
 

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I have 2 68 rifles.. 1 has 4-12 scope and other red dot, both 16” barrels. The scoped one I target shoot and shoot predators with. The other I have set up for a self defense type long gun,
556 just doesn’t blow my skirt up anymore.
 

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Got mine for deer and coyote hunting. I wanted one rifle to work for either. If I can bring myself to do it🙄 I might sell off a couple of other rifles.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Some great posts here folks. Dlenzi, thanks for the very informative post, great work.
The responses have sort of confirmed mostly what I figured, most seem to enjoy the 6.8 as a hunting round, which is great of course, but a few also use it, or at least intend to, as I do, as a training tool.
I'm sort of bored with the 5.56 as well and I just am excited as all get out to start reloading for the 6.8. Just ordered more 2200, some h322 and 10x, 200 Barnes 95gr TTSX and a few other small goodies. Aaah, good times comin.
 

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I have a dedicated fighting rifle in 6.8. It is essentially a 6.8 Mk18 Mod 1 but with a Geissele M-Lok handguard instead of DD rail. It currently has about 1500 rounds through it, 90% of them suppressed and ran pretty hard. It has been extremely reliable and accuracy is as good as quality 5.56/.223 loads. So certainly, it can be done.

I have a nearly identically assembled upper in 5.56 that was built for the purpose of cross training with cheaper/more readily available ammo with all other things being similar enough to be relevant training. However, during the initial phase of running out my 6.8 hard to test it, I have pretty much just stuck with it and the 5.56 upper rarely gets used anymore. It is my daily carry, ranch/truck rifle and has served me well.

I have a few other 6.8 rifles/upper and each one is purpose built, but naturally they all have the ability to cross-over into multiple roles. That's one of the great attributes of this platform. Good luck and enjoy.
 

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I have a dedicated fighting rifle in 6.8. It is essentially a 6.8 Mk18 Mod 1 but with a Geissele M-Lok handguard instead of DD rail. It currently has about 1500 rounds through it, 90% of them suppressed and ran pretty hard. It has been extremely reliable and accuracy is as good as quality 5.56/.223 loads. So certainly, it can be done.

I have a nearly identically assembled upper in 5.56 that was built for the purpose of cross training with cheaper/more readily available ammo with all other things being similar enough to be relevant training. However, during the initial phase of running out my 6.8 hard to test it, I have pretty much just stuck with it and the 5.56 upper rarely gets used anymore. It is my daily carry, ranch/truck rifle and has served me well.

I have a few other 6.8 rifles/upper and each one is purpose built, but naturally they all have the ability to cross-over into multiple roles. That's one of the great attributes of this platform. Good luck and enjoy.
I use mine pretty much the same way, 6.8 is my go to rifle. I tend to shoot more 5.56 from a nearly identical upper for practice to save on ammo cost, but I still use the 6.8 to train occasionally so I'm 100% familiar with it. Also, I have gone the LWRC Six8 route to maximize reliability should I ever find myself in a life/death situation. Six8 receiver set + ARP barrel = the most accurate and reliable AR I have.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Leatherneck and fletch, we need to talk more, this is just the thing I had in mind and that you both have successfully done what I want to achieve is great news, even though I was already it was certainly possible.
Setting up a 5.56 twin for cheap training is just what I thought. I had just typed up a long post aimed at Constructor asking about the chances of getting a 13.7" medium profile barrel with the capacity to mount a FSB and with a mil-spec finish, but I didnt post it. The thinking is that I could build a twin of my most used 5.56 gun which has a 13.7" Triarc barrel with a P&W muzzel device to get to 16". Its my class and training rifle. To have one in 6.8 would be just fantastical. Maybe H will see this and answer.
Thanks for the positive and encouraging post guys.
 

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Leatherneck and fletch, we need to talk more, this is just the thing I had in mind and that you both have successfully done what I want to achieve is great news, even though I was already it was certainly possible.
Setting up a 5.56 twin for cheap training is just what I thought. I had just typed up a long post aimed at Constructor asking about the chances of getting a 13.7" medium profile barrel with the capacity to mount a FSB and with a mil-spec finish, but I didnt post it. The thinking is that I could build a twin of my most used 5.56 gun which has a 13.7" Triarc barrel with a P&W muzzel device to get to 16". Its my class and training rifle. To have one in 6.8 would be just fantastical. Maybe H will see this and answer.
Thanks for the positive and encouraging post guys.
I set up my 6.8 first, then changed one of my 5.56's later to copy it. From the start, I didn't really set out to have one as a go-to rifle and the other as a training rig, but as time passed and the cost-of-training math became more of a factor I realized that would probably be a better option and ended up altering one of the 5.56's to match the 6.8. Apparently, I like to learn things the hard way...LOL. I think what you're looking to do is a great idea.

Even if H can't/won't do a shorter barrel for you I would imagine you could find a decent gunsmith to cut & thread a 16" barrel down to your specs. Is the Triarc a 13.7 or a 13.9? (not that 0.2" is a big deal). Now that I'm moving out of Illinois to a non-commie state I've been looking at shorter barrel options (and suppressors) and was checking out some of their options last week.

IMO if this is going to be a life/death-potential rifle I would highly recommend using the LWRC (or one of the new New Frontier sets) for your build. The LWRC set is probably way overpriced for a forged receiver set, but all things considered for my uses it was money well spent.
 
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