6.5 X 47 Lapua Range Report

The Atlas bipod shown here requires a 1913 rail in order for it to be attached to a rifle.

Designed to work in short action rifles with a standard .308 bolt face, feed reliably from detachable box magazines and utilize small rifle primers, the 6.5 X 47 Lapua has been an absolute pleasure to shoot.  Low recoil, excellent exterior ballistics and quality brass make this a hard cartridge to beat.

6.5 x 47 Lapua cases loaded with 120 grain Scenar L bullets.
6.5 x 47 Lapua loaded with 120 grain Scenar L bullets.

I built my 22″ 6.5X47 Lapua with a Deviant Action, Bartlein Heavy Varmint barrel and McMillan stock from Brownells (you can see how  it was built here).  I took the rifle to Vapor Trail Tactical’s Precision Scoped Rile 2 class and was pleased with its performance.  Now, I have a series of 200 and 300 yard prone matches I need to get ready for.

I decided to swap out the Nightforce F1 3.5-15X50 for a Nightforce NXS 8-32×56.  I like the F1 for unknown distance silhouette targets, however, for small paper targets I prefer more magnification.

I headed to the range to zero the scope.  My hand load is a Lapua 120 grain Scenar L, Lapua brass, CCI 450 primer and Varget powder.  The ogive is .017″ from the lands.  Velocity is 2880 feet-per-second.

I fired three rounds to get onto paper at 50 yards and then shot five-round groups to make scope adjustments.  The rifle was fired prone from an Atlas bipod with a rear bag.  Rather than cherry pick groups to share, I posted a summary table of the eight, five-round groups I fired below.

Group Distance (yards) Shots Size (inches) MOA
1 100 5 .498 .476
2 100 5 .297 .284
3 100 5 .423 .404
4 100 5 .264 .252
5 100 5 .354 .338
6 200 5 1.328 .634
7 200 5 1.027 .490
8 200 5 .506 .242
AVG .390


Five, five shot 100 yard groups.
Five, five-shot 100 yard groups.
Best five shot, 200 yard group.  .502".
Best five-shot, 200 yard group. .506″.

You can see the rifle shoots well.  I ran the exterior ballistics out to 1,000 yards against my data for a 22″ 308 Winchester/175 SMK, 23″ 223 Remington/ Black Hills 68 BTHP, and 24″ 300 Winchester Magnum/ Federal 190 Gold Medal.  Results are show in the line graph below (click to enlarge).

6.5 47 drop

You’ll notice the 6.5 x 47 Lapua 120 Scenar L hand load (green) I am using shoots flatter than the 308/175 (red) and 223/68 (yellow), approaching the 300/190 (blue).

If you’ve been considering the 6.5 x 47 Lapua, get one.  You’ll be glad you did.