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The .257" as a small bore...

9697 Views 45 Replies 37 Participants Last post by  jro45
I've been VERY interested in .25 caliber rifles for some time now, since before I bought my .25-06 seven years ago. After that, I realized the .25 started life as a 'little' gun caliber. The .25-20, .256Win Mag, .25/35, .257Roberts, etc. are all smaller than the .25-06. Then there is the .257Weatherby on top of all of them...Yep a Weatherby is chambered for our 'small bore.'

So how many of you have some of these .25's? What kinds of things do you do with yours? Punch paper, varmint hunt, deer hunt, etc.

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I've got a Browning A Bolt in 25/06 and an Encore pistol with a 15" 250 Savage barrel. The 25/06 was purchased when I lived in PA and was intended as a deer/varmint gun. Took some groundhogs with it but never got a shot at a deer while carrying it. Moved to Indiana and couldn't use it for deer anymore.
Bought the 250 Savage while in Indiana, where it's legal for deer as a handgun, but moved to Illlinois before hunting with it.
I like the quarter bore, but have never used one on a deer yet.
I have a .257 JDJ. I've long toyed with the idea of others but have just never made it happen. The ones I think I could learn to like are the .25-20 and the .257 AI. I did long ago have a couple of .25-06s and I did like them but the .257 AI will almost equal it and for some reason just appeals to me more. I have a Browning Low Wall .22 Hornet that some day will almost assuredly become a .25 of some flavor. Just gotta figure out what and find the money for such a project.

Plainsman said:
So how many of you have some of these .25's? What kinds of things do you do with yours? Punch paper, varmint hunt, deer hunt, etc.

Just a 25-06 here. Encore factory barrel. At first I punched around
the paper :x but she will punch the paper, now. Got it for coyotes,
but they're pretty thin around this part of Iowa the past two
years since I got it. Oh well, they'll come back. Had a Rem700BDL
back in the '70's when Remington still had a Quality Control Dept.
That little tack driver took hundreds of p-dogs and a few mulies.
I haved owned and used 257AI's and 25-06's since the early 70's and have taken everything from gophers to elk with both. I prefer the AI assuming an action is selected that allows for proper feeding. There is a difference of about 100fps, advantage 26-06 - but that is the only ballistic plus. The AI uses considerably less powder with a corresponding lessening of muzzle blast. An added benefit of having 257 Roberts rifle rechambered to the AI is in nearly every one there has been a noticable increase in accuracy. The Imp's tend to become less picky in reloading.
Just one old guy's long term experiences.....................

God Bless and good shooting!

25 cals

I have both a 25-06 and a .257 Robts. They are great calibers and I have killed whitetails and coyotes with both. I loaned my 25-06 to my son who killed a whitetail at an unbelievable 450 yards. I would never have taken the shot but he did and the deer died where it stood. He was using my handloads with a 117 gr sierra sp ahead of Win. MRP and the slug blew through leaving the heart in shreds.

Last season I killed a 10 pointer with the .257 that the carcass weight (no head, no hide, no feet, no innards) was 186 lbs. I was using 100 gr Sierras and IMR3031. I would like for the little .257 to shoot 87 or even 75 grain Sierras but so far I haven't been able to get it to group the lighter weights the way it should. Actually it seems to like the 117's best and I think it has a bit too long of a throat for the smaller bullets. A real bummer because I already have the 25-06 that does well with the heavier stuff.

i have many .25 cal. rifles. 25/20'w.c.f.s, .256 mag., 25/20 s/s, 25/35 w.c.f., 250/3000 sav., .257 roberts, several .25 stevens rimfires. have had several 25/06's in the past , and a 25/36 marlin . the roberts and the savage will take any big game i can afford to hunt. the 25/20w.c.f.,25/35, and .256 mag. can kill deer easily in the hands of a good shot, can be loaded for small game or varmits/med. size game. the .25 stevens are great small game guns but ammo is high and hard to find. for some reason ,i just like quarter bores. i would like to see a .257 ultramag!! mark
25-06, Ruger M77 here. I love it, so far. Have taken one deer with it at 180 yards using a 115 gr. Barnes X. Great round! I'm considering having it converted to a 25-06 AI, but I need to do a little more research first.
Ruger No 1 stainless, laminated stock. Started life as a 25-06, had it rechambered for the .257 Weatherby. Absolutely the most accurate gun I have ever owned. Extremely versitle for the handloader. Great round.
257 as small bore rifle

I have owned four rifles in 257 Roberts over the years and still own one. It is a Ruger 77 with tang safety built in 1972 I believe. Use it for varmints of varies sizes as Illinois is slug only for deer. The best load I have found for this purpuse is 75 grain Sierra hollow point using IMR 4064 powder with Winchester brass and primers. With the Ruger it is best to seat the bullet out to I believe 2.8 or just under 3 inches. I have found this powder and bullet combination to produce groups in the half inch range at 100 yards. My son has a Remington Classic and it does it's best using Winchester factory loads 117 grain p loads. With this it will group under and inch all day long. Both rifles have had trigger jobs, (3 lbs) as well as bedding work, (free float barrels and glass bed the stocks) and wear 3.5 to 10X Leaopold scopes. Both rifles are keepers and will shoot with the best of them regardless of some of the stories you read about being inaccurate. I find the IMR 4064 powder to do a good job with light bullets but very poor with anything over 100 grains. Just an observation.
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.257 Weatherby

:D I have had a couple of .257 Wbty. rifles and still own my latest one. It is one of the best varmint/deer combination rifles that I have ever owned. After the first one I was hooked. I was contemplating getting a 25/06 Encore barrel and converting it to a .257 Wbty. if it is possible. The deer that I have shot with have all fallen where they were standing. And the coyotes don't get out of range with it.

jlk - Have you contemplated just getting a .257 Weatherby barrel from
VVCG? It probably would cost about the same as getting a 25/06 barrel
and reaming the chamber, AND you would get guaranteed MOA from
.257 Weatherby

No I have not thought of that, thanks for pointing that out. I will have to look into that.

I haven't visited this thread or heck even this forum in a good while. After reading my original response I realized it was written prior to my getting a .257 Roberts which I now have also. I've not really worked with it yet even tho I've had it several months. Will eventually. Got more projects than time right now. Still wonder if I'd like the AI version better but will see later maybe. I have owned a .25-06, more than one in fact but not in a long time.

25 caliber

I started out with a Ruger in 250-3000. Sure did kill a lot of woodchucks with it. In one of my many stupid stages i sold it. Sure am sorry now. I just picked up a 25-35 barrel for my Contender. This will be used for varmints if i ever get serious about shooting it. So far it is one of my more fun Contender barrrels to shoot.

bobg :-D
.257 Robt.

Graybeard- I see you have bought a .257 Robt. What make did you get?
the reason I am asking is that I have two of them and have used them for about 45 yrs and like them alot. I didn't think anybody bought the .257 anymore. Carl L.
Carl, I found a Remington M700 ADL chambered for it from a guy selling it right here on my Classifieds. Since he was in this area we met and I bought it. He told me he'd only fired it a few times and from the looks I think that's a fair statement. It looks new. I still haven't fired it yet either but will be doing so this summer as I plan to work up some loads and use it some this fall for deer.

It is a caliber I've long wanted but just never had found the right deal on before. This isn't a cataloged item so must have been a limited run for some large wholesaler I guess.

.257 Robt.

Graybeard, I hope you like it. What works for me may not work for you, but if you need help working up loads for the .257 Robt. I would be glad to help. I have a Rem. 722 .257 Robt. made in 1956. I tried factory loads back then and at 100yds, the best group I could get was 3". I tried handloading and I tried almost everything. I found out that 48grs of 4350 powder and 87 gr Seirra bullets did the best for me. I could keep the group in a .5 in group at 100yds. The 4320 and 4064 powder also held a good group at 100yds but wouldn't hold up at 300yds.

In 1969 Ruger started making the .257 Robt again and I got one. I have a 15 power Unertl scope on it. I put it on in 1970 and it is a tack driver. The .257 Robt is my favorite cal. I could talk all day on the .257. but better not. Later Carl L.
I picked up a used Win. featherweight with a laminated stock in .257 Roberts ackley improved with a Leupold 3X9. What a great little deer hunting package. I had one of these light weight rifles in 30 06 and had to get rid of it because the recoil was bothering me. The 257 is very pleasant to shoot. Shoots the 100gr Barnes XBT and Nosler Solid bases very well. IMR4350 seems to be the prefered powder. With this cartridge paired up with something like a 338 you'd be set for anything on this continent.
I have one at each end, a .23-20 in a Marlin 1894CL and a .25-06 in a Ruger #1V. The little one is still in transit, I love the big one.
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