Best Barrel Length for 6.5 Creedmoor

A Comprehensive Guide

best barrel lenth for 6.5 Creddmore
Best Barrel Length for 6.5 Creedmoor

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The 6.5mm Creedmoor ballistics is one of the most popular handy hunting rifles on the market today for distance engagement precision round. It offers excellent precision and ballistics at a reasonable price point. Many people have one question when deciding what to purchase is barrel length. The Creedmoor is among the modern rifles designed for long-range precision aiming. When the round was originally introduced, it had a 27″ barrel and no muzzle brake, which would be substantial recoil. The best barrel length for 6.5 Creedmoor will depend on what you plan to use the factory rifle for. If you are going to be hunting, a shorter barrel is ideal because it aids in objectivity and maneuverability around brushy terrain.

What's the Best Barrel Length for a Creedmoor?

A 24-inch barrel is usually best when firing at 100 yards. The 16.75″ length would be more appropriate if you’re primarily looking to hunt or shoot out to 300 yards, as the high-velocity bullet will have increased velocity and better long-range accuracy potential with less wind drift due to the shorter barrel.

A longer barrel may work best for target firing or long-distance competitions as it provides more velocity and stability over greater distances. And while some people prefer flash suppressors, others find that they can decrease muzzle rise during rapid-fire by using an open-ended design instead of one with internal baffles like those found on traditional designs. Most people find that a barrel length between the 18-inch barrel and 22-inch barrel works best for target shooting. The shorter the barrel, the more maneuverable it will be but at the velocity cost. A longer optimum barrel is less effective when used in dense brushy terrain because it can snag on overhanging limbs or branches. This article will talk about different factors that affect your choice of Creedmoor barrel length for these rifles.

Table of Contents

What is Meant by Barrel?

The barrel is the tube that extends from the rear of a caliber rifle and houses its bore. A gun’s caliber sample size measures how big in diameter or width it is, as well as how long it is. For example, a .223 Remington has an outer rim diameter of about 0.224 inches while a 30-06 Springfield – which uses approximately 0.312 inches diameter bullets and has an outer diameter of about 0.473 inches.

What Factors Affect Barrel Length?

Barrel length is the distance from the chamber to a predetermined point on the gun. This can be measured between two points, such as when you simply want to measure end-to-end, or it can be measured from an arbitrary reference point. Following are the external ballistics factors that affect the barrel length of Creedmoor ballistics.

 Loss in Velocity

The difference in loss per inch between 30” and 24-inch barrel length for the Creedmoor is minimal. A 30-inch barrel will produce an average of 2790 feet per second, while a 24-inch barrel produces 2700 feet per second. Loss of velocity can be greater or lesser depending on how much powder you load in your cartridge, how heavy bullets are, and what type of pressure regime you are aiming under (high/low).

Weight Saving

The weight savings from a shorter barrel are more significant than the max velocity loss. A 30-inch barrel weighs about 11 pounds, whereas a 24-inch weighs between eight and nine pounds. This difference may not sound like much, but when you carry your mule deer rifle around all day, it can make for an appreciable amount of fatigue relief.

Recoil Reduction

As the optimum barrel gets longer, it produces a greater muzzle brake, which reduces recoil energy on both ends of the spectrum (low recoil rounds and high powered ones). A 17” and 16″ Creedmore barrel has significantly less felt recoil than even 20-inch barrel lengths do due to their effectiveness at reducing some of that energy before it reaches your shoulder. Criterion barrel also typically requires less power to produce the same velocity as shorter ones. As a result, 24-inch criterion barrel will reduce felt recoil energy and muzzle rise significantly more than 17,” or 16″ lengths do. The trade-off is that they are heavier, but if you weigh your handy hunting rifle before deciding on length, then it should be an easy decision in favor of longer barrel options.


There are many debates about whether control barrels lead to greater accuracy potential for any popular cartridge. Anecdotal evidence suggests that there may be less variability from shot to shot with the ideal barrel and better overall performance through tight groups at distances up to 300 yards.

Types of Barrel Length for a Creedmoor Ballistics

Is 24 Inch the best barrel length for Creedmoor?

A 24-inch barrel is usually best when flat shooting at 100 yards in military rifles. A 24″ would be better if you’re typically limited by wind and looking to shoot at longer distances of 400+ yards. The heaviest bullets will have less barrel speed from recoil recovery but improved accuracy with smaller deviations in trajectory as it’s already been slower.

Barrel Length for 6.5 Creedmoor 24 Inch Barrel

Is 16.75 inch the best barrel length for Creedmoor?

The 16.75″ length would be more appropriate in modern rifles if you’re primarily looking to hunt or shoot out to 300 yards. The caliber bullet will have increased velocity and extended-range precision with less wind drift due to the shorter barrel. A 16.75″ is typical for hunting and 300-yard shooting due to the increased velocity.

Is 18 Inch the best barrel length for Creedmoor?

Many people prefer an 18-inch barrel when they’re targeting alone in more open spaces where their shots aren’t challenged by someone else also taking shots on the other side of them. The shorter your bolt action rifle section is, the easier it will be to carry long distances. It is accurate out to 200 yards with less wind drift over any distance. It creates less muzzle blast, which can cause dizziness or concussions in effective range shooting environments.

Barrel Length for 6.5 Creedmoor 18 Inch Barrel

What is Meant by Barrel Cutting of 6.5 Creedmore?

The barrel cutting of the 6.5 Creedmore is a process where the barrel is cut down to size with material left on one end for taping back up. Barrel cutdown makes the barrel shorter but not lighter or stronger. It is mostly done to make a  caliber rifle more compact, handy, and comfortable for general use. The reason behind barrel cutdown is to avoid disturbing your neighbors with loud noise due to the muzzle blast effect of this long bullet kinetic energy leaving the muzzle velocity at 2200 feet per second (fps)/ lbs of energy, plus a muzzle brake, the minimum barrel is a good idea to reduce the recoil and avoid bending or breaking your barrel.

What Categories of Ammo Does One Can Use in A 6.5 Creedmore Rifle?

One can use a variety of factory ammo in a 6.5 Creedmoor rifle, including hunting rounds, match rounds, FMJ rounds, ammo in stock. Some of the best categories of factory ammo for the 6.5 Creedmoor include the Hornady 143-grain ELD-X Precision Hunter round, the Federal Non-Typical 140-grain Soft Point round, and the Hornady 120-grain ELD Match round.

Final Verdict on the Best Barrel Length for A Creedmoor?

A 24-inch barrel is usually best when firing at 100 yards. The 16.75″ length would be more appropriate if you’re primarily looking to hunt or shoot out to 300 yards, as the high-velocity bullet will have increased velocity and better long-range accuracy potential with less wind drift due to the shorter barrel. 

What To Know Before Buying A Barrel?

Consider the shooting distance. Understand how recoil energy will affect exactness at long distances and consider barrel length for your needs. Know which type of cartridge you’re using, especially if it’s a larger caliber round or magnum. Can it fire 100-120 rounds down the bore?


What are the benefits of a longer barrel?

A longer barrel extends the sight radius, making for more accurate shots. Longer barrels also have an increased rate of fire and lower recoil because the ammo is only traveling in one direction (down the barrel) instead of being pushed every time it’s fired.

Does a shorter barrel affect the accuracy?

In theory,  minimum barrels are more accurate. Tolerances are more difficult to hold over longer distances. They are also relatively stiffer for the same profile, so the harmonics are easier to work with. Once you get past 100yd benchrest, barrel lengths start creeping up.

Are heavy barrels more accurate?

Heavy barrels are more accurate because the extra weight reduces recoil energy. These will inherently increase the understanding of the benchrest rifle (and the competitive shooter), which is less recoil and less muzzle jump.

How much velocity per inch is a barrel?

Generally, an inch less barrel will cost ammo between 20 and 25 fps per inch velocity. This varies depending on grains of powder, their volume, and the burning rate of that powder dose. The more powder dose and the slower its burning rate, the more barrel volume needed to burn it.

Here you can read our other helping articles for Best 6.5 Creedmoor Scopes, a Comparison between 6.5 Creedmoor Vs 223, and Best Powder for 6.5 Creedmoor that perfect for your needs.


Choose Barrel Length Wisely.It may take some time and research before you finally find your perfect barrel length muzzle velocity but don’t let yourself get overwhelmed by all of your options or become discouraged when others disagree with what you have chosen for yourself. Keep an open mind and trust your gut. Pick the barrel length wisely for you because it will ultimately determine how comfortable flat-shooting is, whether or not you can reach long distances with focus, and if recoil needs a break. However, you need to clean the barrel after firing 15-20 rounds for better distance capability of your gun.

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Author Profile

Gabriel TackettGabriel Tackett
Gabriel Tackett is an experienced shooter and hunter for over 15 years with a degree in Engineering from the University of Minnesota. He is also a certified National Rifle Association (NRA) officer for 10 years And his passion lies in teaching others how to safely enjoy the hobby by recommending the best practices & products in the gun industry.