Graybeard Outdoors banner

1 - 20 of 37 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
53 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm pondering buying a rifle for hunting whitetails. If I ever have the money and time, I might take a trip to hunt for elk, mule deer, sheep, goats, or hogs. And if the opportunity presents itself, I might pop off some woodchucks and coyotes (here in Massachusetts we can't hunt woodchucks, and we can only use rifles for black bears...but I hunt with my family in PA too). Anyway, what are your thoughts on the 270 Win. versus the 308 Win.? I'm leaning toward the 308 because of the short action and plentiful and cheap ammo (surplus) for practice. The 270 is faster and has a longer range. I know they both have great reputations. I just wanted to see what you folks like and why. Cheers.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,748 Posts
If given the choice of the two. I would have to take the 308 for the heaver bullet ability. No other reason. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
225 Posts
I'd go .308 myself.

The difference in trajectory isn't enough to be a real asset.

The .308 makes a bigger hole and can handle heavier bullets.

You can also usually find cheap surplus ammo for it.

Rummer
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
308 Posts
Man what dilemna! Two outstanding cartridges for North American non-dangerous big game. Both would serve you well and it's a matter of personal choice. FWIW, I personally would choose the 308 since it's about 90-95% of a 30-06 anyway and with today's super bullets, it's as good under most applications. Good luck
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
118 Posts
I like the .308 because it is technically more accurate (and even though I can't make use of that fact, it is the kind of thing that floats my boat) and components can usually be found cheaper.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
168 Posts
In another match-up I might choose the .270... but against the .308, It loses hands down. IMHO the .308 is just about perfect. I'm not at all bias though :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,439 Posts
Don't own either one, and probably never will. I'm not a "one gun man" myself. But they are both excellent choices for a one gun hunter in the lower 48 states. I think with varmints in the mix the .270 is the better choice because any trajectory advantage helps on the little critters. But the .308 is going to be a little better with less than perfect shots on the bigger critters, due to heavier bullets available. Get the gun that fits your needs best.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,602 Posts
If you want to shoot ground hogs and such, the .270 is going to be flatter shooting and if you hand load, there are 90 grain and 110 grain bullets available. Both rounds could be sold as the one rifle does it all round.

You stated you prefer a short action, so that would eliminate the .270. I really like both rounds, and if you took the groundhogs out of the picture, I'd say it's about a toss up. I do have 2 270's, and for what ever reason, haven't owned a .308, but have been around friend who prefer the .308. The .308 has also been called the most inherently accurate 30 caliber made.

The .270 was a favorite of the late Jack Oconner who considered one the finest deer calibers.

You could always go with a 7mm/08!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,907 Posts
BradCoPAHunter said:
I'm pondering buying a rifle for hunting whitetails. ...... Anyway, what are your thoughts on the 270 Win. versus the 308 Win.? .....
Brad,

You won't go wrong with a 308, but.....

There is one over riding reason to go with the 270 for deer!

More likely than not a 270 Winchester rifles will group most all 130, 140, 150 and 160 grain loads to the same point of aim at 100 yards! I have not found any other caliber that will perform like this. My rifle is no exception. I wish I could show you but hunt101 still doesn't have my pics restored.

So I'll try to explain: I work up reloads for many centerfire rifles - All with the exception of the 270 walk hotter/heavier load up my targets. the 270 doesn't do this - I've got pics of targets with the same bullet over the whole spectrum of starting to max that look like one group at 100yards. Also have targets of factory and reloads with 130, 140, and 150 grain bullets that print into one group less than 1.2" at 100 yards! Just for experimental reasons I tried the 160 grain bullet and they don't even walk up higher than the lighter ones.

I don't have an explaination to offer other than to say that it works. Over the years, I read and seen where others have also found this to be true of their 270. This can be such an advantage at deer camp if you run out, loose or need more ammo - The rifle stays sighted in at 100 yards with what ever you are able to find quickly.

Try a 270. If it will perform similarly you won't be sorry. If it won't then you can probably sell it w/o much of a loss and put your money into that 308.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
53 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the feedback. Yes, I have read before that the 270 will stay very consistent whether you shot 130 or 150 grain bullets. Recoil-wise, I figure the 270 and 308 are pretty close. And, yes, I did consider the 7mm-08. In fact, that was my focus for a long time. However, I'm bummed that there are so few offerings in factory ammo. I don't plan to reload, so variety of available loads is important. Since I will only be able to hunt with the gun a couple of weeks a year, I want to get something that I can shoot a lot of paper with but not have to break the bank. Hence, the 308 with surplus ammo is a consideration. I have heard, though, that surplus ammo can be pretty inconsistent; and what's the point of trying to improve my accuracy if the ammo is sketchy? Have any of you had such experience with surplus ammo? My last ammo/cost consideration was that Cabelas sells remanufactured 270 and 308 ammo at a reasonable price. So in the end, cost wise, both cartridges stand on similar ground. I think I'm still leaning toward the 308 because of the short action and the bigger hole it'll put in a critter for blood trails.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,439 Posts
BradCoPAHunter, it is the amount of bullet expansion that determines the wound size, not the original bullet caliber. Bullet construction and velocity are more important factors here. I think you will find that 130 grain .270 bullets expand much better and kill deer faster than 180 grain .308s, for example.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
305 Posts
I constantly hear about how superior the .270 is because it is "flatter shooting" than the .308. When it comes to deer hunting, this is totally preposterous.

Take a look at the ballistic charts, for factory loaded rounds, in .270 and .308, with 150 grain bullets.

When both rounds are sighted in to be dead on at 200 yards, then at 300 yards, the .308 round drops only 7/10ths of an inch more than the .270 round. That's right, only 7/10ths of any inch. Take out your ruler, draw a vertical line that length on a piece of paper, and just look at it long and hard. Then think about that tiny little line at a distance of 3 football fields! Does anybody really think that this will make any difference whatsoever in the real world??? A slight wind, a heat convection on the ground, an insignificant finger movement when you shoot, will ALL have lots more effect on your shot than 7/10s of an inch.

When it comes to shooting at small varmints at long range with light bullets, then plainly the .270 has the edge. But, if you already have a varmint rifle, and you are primarily interested in deer or larger game, then the .308 is plainly the winner. It has significantly less recoil in the 150 grain factory load than the .270, and is deadly on deer.

Just my actual experiences.

Big Paulie
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,439 Posts
Big Paulie, you are correct, but it is not a fair comparison. It was the 130 grain bullet that made the .270's reputation as a long range deer killer, and it is the proper load for most deer hunting. Compare that to the .308's 150 grainer. The heavier bullets are best for bear, or maybe Elk. The 150 grain .270 is most properly compared to a 180 grain .308.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,907 Posts
Here's a my 270 Winchester w/ velocity chrono'd at 10' and 100 to 500 calculated from JBM balistics:


Wt. Grains, Bullet Type, B. C., Muzzle, 100, 200, 300, 400, 500 Yds

150, SGK, 0.483, 3025, 2832, 2647, 2469, 2300, 2136


Sighted in at 200 yards:
My 270 Winchester reload above figures to be 6.2 inches low at 300 yards!
(A 270 Weatherby is down 5.3" at 300)

Now what does the 308 do?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
305 Posts
Ramrod and Ray,

Well you each raise some interesting points, but here is how is see them.

Ramrod.

You say that the best comparison to make is between the .270 Wincheser with 130 grain bullet (best deer killler) and the .308 Winchester with the 150 grain bullet (best deer killer). OK. I tend to agree. So let's look at them. According to the 2003 Shooters Bible (page 474) a standard factory loaded Federal round, for the .270 Winchester with 130 grain bullet, when sighted in for 200 yards, drops 6.8 inches at 300 yards.

According to the 2003 Shooters Bible (page 481) the standard Federal round, for .308 Winchester, with 150 grain bullet, when sighted in for 200 yards, drops 8.8 inches at 300 yards.

So, Ramrod, I will grant you that when comparing the .270 in 130 grain against the .308 in 150 grain, the .270 shoots two inches flatter at 300 yards than the .308. Is two inches really significant at 300 yards? Some may say yes. But on deer, I have never had two inches in drop be a significant factor, and I don't personally view it as significant.

What I do consider to be far more significant to making the shot is the following: When shooting these two rounds, from a rifle weighing 8 pounds, the .308 generates only about 17.1 foot pounds of recoil energy, but the .270 generates about 21.3 foot pounds of recoil energy! That's right, the .270 generates 24.6 percent greater recoil than the .308, just to get that two inches of flatter shooting. (See American Ammunition and Ballistics, by Ed Matunas, 1979 ed. page 23). To me, it just not worth it.

Ray,

Your posting lists a custom "hand-load" for the .270 with a 150 grain bullet, that shows that in your hand-load, the .270 drops 2.6 inches less (i.e., shoots 2.6 inches flatter) than a standard .308 factory load at 300 yards (when both are sighted in at 200). The 2.6 inches is a significant figure. However, you have accidently proven my point! In effect, what you have said is, "The .270 does shoot alot flatter with a 150 grain bullet than a factory loaded .308 Winchester in the same bullet weight, BUT ONLY if you hand-load the .270." If you don't hand-load (and the vast majority of hunters don't), then the .270 with the 150 grain bullet is not flatter than .308 at 300 yards with the 150 grain bullet in any material respect. (Again, the number is 7/10th of an inch.)

I don't hand-load. However, I'll bet that somebody out there who does hand-load the .308 can show you a sizzling load for the .308 with the 150 grain bullet, that will have a trajectory no more than 1 inch different from your .270 hand-load. So, . . . we are all back in the same place.

The .270 Winchester is a great round, and there is no doubt about it. But, give me the .308 Winchester any day. Less recoil, much more inherently accurate, no need to hand-load it, and a nice 150 grain bullet hitting that deer. They are both excellent on deer rounds. But I think that the real choice between them lies in the following question: If the rest of your game will be smaller than deer, then choose the .270. If the rest of your game will be larger than deer, then choose the .308.

Best Regards, Big Paulie
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,570 Posts
Aside of all of the other debate here I am mystified as to the advantage of a short action cartridge.
There is plentiful and cheap ammo for the .270 too.
O.k., so it isn't a mil-surp round but there is a huge range of ammo for it, not that I use factory ammo at all.
If the argument is less powder for similar performance fair enough but since lots of factory ammo has been cited as a reason to prefer it I hardly see that this argument has any relevance.
A .270 Win will definitely dispatch all of the game you mentioned although elk are on the outside.
But then I'd want more gun than .308 for an elk too.
If you want your cake and eat it get the 270 WSM.
Long range, short action, serious capabilities.
But then it sounds like you're going to do more plinking than anything else so I guess the .308 will win out.
BTW, what sort of wear does regular use of mil FMJs have on a barrel?
Are they still steel jacketted?
 
1 - 20 of 37 Posts
Top