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Barnes Bullets 6.5mm 140 gr. Match Burners

Posted on January 30, 2014

My team mate and Desert Tech shooter, Tyler Frehner wrote a new review I wanted to share with you guys.


If you are a hunter, or have ever been exposed to hunting, Barnes Bullets needs no introduction. If you are a bench rest or a long range precision shooter, you may have seen Barnes bullets but have never considered them because they are a “hunting bullet”. Well, here are the facts. Barnes bullets have been in the bullet making business since 1932. That is 82 years of experience making the best hunting bullets in the world. Most major ammunition companies offer Barnes projectiles in their premium lines of hunting ammunition.

Ok, so?

If you are a bench rest shooter, or like me, a precision tactical long range shooter, odds are that you reload, and your bullets come out of either a yellow, blue, or green box. Well, Barnes is looking to change that. They have taken their 82 years of experience and are now looking at the long range competition crowd. They have released their line of long range competition projectiles called Match Burners, and they come in a black box.

Barnes Bullets 6.5mm 140 gr. Match Burners

Barnes Bullets 6.5mm 140 gr. Match Burners

Currently, the Match Burner line has the following offerings:

In .224 they offer 52, 69, and 85 grain bullets.
In 6mm they offer 68, and 105 grain bullets.
In 6.5mm they offer 140 grain bullets.
In 7mm they offer 171 grain bullets.
In .308 they offer 155 and 175 grain bullets.

They are good? Prove it!

My local club here in Las Vegas focuses on precision tactical long range shooting. We are called Sin City Precision. We got a hold of some 6.5mm 140 grain Match Burners, and jumped head first into load development. Our go to cartridge is the 6.5 Creedmoor. We noticed right away how easy the projectile is to work with. We found the powder charge node fairly quickly, and then worked on seating depth. Surprisingly enough, the Match Burners like to jump a little bit. We found the two best seating depths to be .015″ and .05″ off of the lands. Below are our 100 yard results.

5 rounds @ 100 yards

5 rounds @ 100 yards

This 5 shot group shot at 100 yards measures right at .533″ from edge to edge. If you subtract the bullet diameter of .264″ its pretty darn nice! This group was fired by this shooter off of a bipod and rear bag.

Mrs. Frehner

Mrs. Frehner

We only recently started using these bullets, and so far only one of our shooters has used these in competition. Sin City Precision shooter Joe Comfort used these in the January Las Vegas local shoot. He certainly produced results, out of 32 shooters from 3 different states he finished 2nd! Joe is absolutely a talented and consistent shooter, but even the best can’t finish well without accurate ammunition. The Barnes did their part.

The load?

I have been told that sharing load data can potentially bring about some degree of liability, and so I will give some details of this load for the 6.5 Creedmoor but not all of the details. As always, load with care, and always start low and work up.

Sin City Precision’s Barnes load:

140 grain 6.5mm Barnes Match Burner
Hornady Brass
Tula primers
Seated to either 2.787″ or 2.837″ COAL
H4350 powder (again start low and work up). I’m using a 26” Benchmark 6.5mm 1-8” twist.

And now here is a picture of one of my favorite reloading machines, the RCBS Chargemaster.

RCBS Chargemaster 1500

RCBS Chargemaster 1500

The icing on the cake!

I have been told that there are 3 components to accuracy, the shooter, the rifle and the ammunition. I can say that with these projectiles, and a little time developing a load that suits your rifle, the ammunition portion is a gimmie.

However, the yellow, green, and blue box companies also produce very good projectiles. So why bother trying something new if your color of box is already producing?

Here are prices for boxes of 100 pulled off of

Yellow box: $46.99
Blue box: $43.49
Green box: $39.99
Barnes MB: $29.99

So THAT is the why. Try a box out, you will not look back!

Thanks for reading,

Tyler Frehner
Desert Technologies Shooter

2013 Precision Rifle Series Finale at K&M in Clearwater, FL

2013 Precision Rifle Series Finale at K&M in Clearwater, FL

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