Experienced shooters know that good ammo is as important as the firearm. The right ammo can not only enhance your accuracy, but it can help you achieve your shooting goals.

While there are different types of ammunition to choose from, today we are taking a closer look at the 8.6 Blackout – what makes it special, and how it compares to other rounds and more.

What Is 8.6 Blackout?

The ammunition known as 8.6 Blackout was developed by the firearms manufacturer Q, LLC. It is intended to be used with weapons chambered for the .300 Blackout round.

The 8.6 Blackout cartridge gets its name from the fact that it is a .300 Blackout round that has had the neck raised to take a bigger bullet diameter, usually approximately 8.6mm (.338 caliber).

In comparison to the standard .300 Blackout cartridge, the 8.6 Blackout cartridge has a larger bullet weight and diameter, which can enhance ballistic characteristics and terminal performance, particularly at longer ranges.


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8.6 Blackout Main Characteristics

  1. Terminal Ballistics. Compared to conventional 5.56 NATO rounds, 8.6 Blackout ammo is intended to offer better terminal ballistics, particularly at closer ranges. Its goal is to provide more efficacy and stopping force at standard engagement distances.
  2. Short-Barreled Firearms. This ammo is specifically crafted to function effectively in weapons with short barrels. These weapons are frequently employed in tight spaces where dexterity is essential, such as cities or interior areas.
  3. Moderate Recoil. The 8.6 Blackout has improved performance over 5.56 NATO rounds, but its recoil is generally tolerable, therefore it is good for quick follow-up shots and close-quarters combat.
  4. Short to Mid-Range Shooting Accuracy. The 8.6 Blackout bullet is most useful in short to mid-range shooting situations because of its terminal ballistics and effectiveness, even though it can also produce accurate rounds over longer distances.

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8.6 Blackout Specs

  • Bullet diameter: 8.58 mm
  • Neck diameter: 9.40 mm
  • Shoulder diameter: 11.531 mm
  • Base diameter: 11.946 mm
  • Rim diameter: 12.010.25 mm
  • Bullet Weight: 185gr
  • Muzzle Velocity: 2200 fps
  • Rim thickness: 1.370.25 mm
  • Case length: 42.80 mm
  • Overall length: 63.2571.75 mm
  • Rifling twist: 76102 mm (1:31:4)
  • Primer type: Small rifle or large rifle (depending on the casing)
8.6 Blackout Specs

8.6 Blackout Pros & Cons


  • Made for short barrels (8 or 12 inches).
  • Compatible with AR 10 rifles.
  • Due to the extremely quick twist rate, subsonic ammo has excellent accuracy.
  • Very powerful, even for dangerous game


  • Does not shoot flat.
  • Requires a bigger can, due to the larger caliber (cant use a typical 7.62mm suppressor).
  • Not perfect for hunting at a distance, due to slow velocities.
  • Incredibly difficult to locate ammunition if you do not reload.

8.6 Blackout Ammo vs. 300 Blackout

Conceptually, the 8.6 Blackout bullet is similar to the 300 Blackout, with both aiming to provide improved terminal ballistics over traditional 5.56 NATO rounds, especially in short-barreled firearms.

However, since it is a proprietary cartridge, its availability and compatibility with other firearms may be limited compared to the more established 300 Blackout.

Ultimately, because both bullets serve a similar purpose, choosing between them would depend on several factors, such as firearm compatibility, availability of ammunition, and specific performance requirements.

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8.6 Blackout vs. 338 Federal

A lot of people say that the 8.6 Blackout is identical to the .338 Federal, however the first differs from the .338 in terms of both bullet velocity and weight.

The 8.6 Blackout may be a better option if you are searching for a cartridge designed for short-barreled rifles that have good terminal ballistics at shorter ranges and moderate recoil.

The thing is that the .338 Federal would be a better option if you are looking for a more potent cartridge that can hunt medium- to large-sized game at a longer range.

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8.6 Blackout vs. 6.5 Creedmoor

The 6.5 Creedmoor rifle cartridge is very popular for long-range shooting and hunting. With its excellent ballistic performance and low recoil, it is well-suited for long-range shooting competitions and hunting applications.

On the other hand, the 8.6 Blackout is more suitable for short-range, and mid-range shooting, as it offers good performance in terms of accuracy and terminal ballistics within those parameters.

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In a nutshell, the 8.6 Blackout excels at short to mid-range shooting and is optimized for use in short-barreled firearms, particularly in platforms like the Honey Badger by Q, LLC.

It is a very powerful bullet with good terminal ballistics, and overall a good option for fast follow-up shots and close-quarters combat.

What is your take on the 8.6 Blackout? Have you used it, and if so, what did you like and dislike about it? Express your opinion in the comments below, and do not hesitate to claim your business listing, and grow on our platform.