New gun makes changes to range necessary

I thought I had built the best backyard shooting range ever constructed, but then I got a new rifle. Now it seems I need to make some modifications to my range.

I recently became the proud new owner of a Stag Arms Stag 10 Marksman rifle, chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor. I postponed my ownership of a gun that shoots this relatively new but highly popular caliber, because I already had a .270. They’re very similar, and I figured there was no need to have one.

But then I came home with this new Stag 10, and I wish I’d jumped on the bandwagon earlier. The biggest benefit to the 6.5 is its ability to extend your effective range. The .270 shoots accurately as far out as I will ever take a shot when I’m hunting, so I didn’t see a need to get a gun with a similar size bullet whose chief difference was that it could hit predictably from ranges 600 or more yards farther than my .270.

But again, I was wrong. And I found that out when I shot that 6.5. The recoil is nearly nonexistent, and at 300 yards, it was placing shots on the target that were touching, and almost punching the same holes.

But it does punch holes. The backstop I painstakingly built for my backyard range is made of two stacks of 8×8 treated lumber, laid horizontally and staggered so there is no gap that stretches from the front of the backstop to the back. On the front, I’ve covered it with three layers of inch-thick rubber, and there are two more layers of the same rubber on the back to catch any shoot-throughs. It worked like a charm with all my other guns, but that 6.5 punches right through all those layers.

Now I am going to have to dig my backstop into the hill it’s in front of, then backfill it with dirt to catch those shoot-throughs.

I absolutely love that new 6.5 Creedmoor Stag 10, but it’s making a lot of work for me. I’m glad I finally have a tractor — I’d hate to have to do all that work with a shovel.

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