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  #1  
Old 04-07-2013, 03:21 PM
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.270 Winchester or .270 Winchester Short Magnum ?


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Which of the 2 calibers would be a better choice for hunting large game such as elk and moose ? Now, most of you would say " Get a .300 or get a .30-06 ! " But these are not my main scopes. Deer and, well I guess Elk, are my main scopes, so no need for a .30 cal in my opinion. Now if I get the .270 WSM I will handload, but if I get the .270 win I will ot handload and probably get a .22 LR too. Now, I have heard something that the WSM's won't handle heavier bullets as well as their standard length counterparts. Is this true ? The WSM comes with a 24 " barrel on the Savage 111/11 Trophy Hunter XP, and a 22 " on the regular .270.




What are some good loads for the .270 WSM that duplicate the .243 win ( for varmints ) ?
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  #2  
Old 04-07-2013, 03:36 PM
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For elk and bigger, start at .30 caliber. Not that a .270 won't kill 'em.... juust sayin'.

Well it sounds like you pretty well have your mind made up already. Just for what its worth I'd probably go with the .270 Win especially if you don't handload.
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  #3  
Old 04-07-2013, 03:39 PM
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Personally, I'd get the tried and proven 270 Winchester. With top handloads, it is within 150fps of the WSM, and it is so much easier on the wallet. With the ammo situation being what it is, and bound to be in the future, sticking with standard cartridges would be a wiser choice. The 270 is easily formed from other cases if needed, and the 270WSM will never see that benefit.
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  #4  
Old 04-07-2013, 04:46 PM
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I've taken deer with 270 never taken a elk have no plan on using one. I've used 270WSM elk,deer,antelope even shot few PD with one and it now resides with nephew in Calif. I've got pretty nice 270Wby that may see some use this coming hunting season wait see what I've drawn tags for.

I've never down loaded one of my hunting rifles to shoot varmint figure might as well get some experience with hunting loads. I have few elk/deer rifles that I use on combination hunt vs what I might use on separate deer hunt.

I only shot 140gr/150gr bullets in the 270WSM . As to moose not sure I'd use 270WSM/270Wby have other rifles than may better suited.
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  #5  
Old 04-07-2013, 05:01 PM
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Neither is my choice for elk or moose; either will work if it is used properly (proper bullet, and proper placement). There is no advantage to either round for elk or moose. High velocity is not an advantage when you try to use a "light" caliber for any given animal, so the magnum version has no advantages over the traditional version for elk and moose.

If I was after a long range antelope or deer round, maybe the velocity of the magnum versions would be worth the extra cost. Maybe. But for elk or moose, a 150 grain premium bullet from either one will do the job equally well. My elk/moose gun is a .300 Win. Mag. My .270 Win has been my favorite deer/antelope round for 35 years.
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  #6  
Old 04-07-2013, 05:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jrhunter25 View Post
What are some good loads for the .270 WSM that duplicate the .243 win ( for varmints ) ?
....243 loads with a 58gr bullet.....

Seriously though, classic newbie 101. Big game question & varminting load advice all in one go.
By your post, you don't have any reloading books, or not recent ones. Fear not, you can fix that!
What you asked is " which is better". There is no "better" in shooting, unless you have a preference; and we can't tell you what your preference is.

Both the 270Win & WSM are within about 100fps of each other. Up to 130 gr the "advantage" is WSM, above that is Win.
I say "advantage" because honestly neither you, nor any animal you will ever venture a shot on; would ever be able to notice that difference. The argument is purely academic.
The questions you need to ask are:
Do I have a preference?
Am I OK with paying a premium for brass?
Am I OK with losing magazine capacity?

Last edited by Darkker; 04-07-2013 at 05:23 PM.
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Old 04-07-2013, 05:35 PM
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I agree with Darkker. It makes no difference at all. Choose the rifle that fits you best. The only question I'd ask in addition to his 3 is:
Am I OK with not being 'cool' (meaning, not having the 'newest' and 'coolest' cartridge)?
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  #8  
Old 04-07-2013, 05:42 PM
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270 Winchester for Elk, maybe. But not for Moose. 270 Winchester is easily available compared to many other rounds.
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  #9  
Old 04-07-2013, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeepergeo View Post
270 Winchester for Elk, maybe. But not for Moose. 270 Winchester is easily available compared to many other rounds.
Huh? LOTS of moose are dead because of the .270 Win. Lots.

It may not be my first choice (well .... it isn't any more) but only because I got a better choice. The .270 Win can absolutely kill any moose that walks. It may not be the best choice for some shots from certain angles, or perhaps extreme ranges, but to say it is unsuitable for moose is to reveal a serious lack of experience with it. The fact I think it is not the "best" does not mean it is unsuitable at all.
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  #10  
Old 04-07-2013, 06:27 PM
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In case people are wondering, the 270 Winchester has been killing elk and moose for nearly 100yrs. There is no moose or elk that ever walked the earth that the 270 shooting 150gr bullets can't kill.

People get hung up on terminal ballistics far too much and forget to check the history of the cartridge. The 6.5x55 Swede has been killing things up to the size of Eland [MUCH bigger than elk or the average moose] since it was introduced in 1894, and it isn't more powerful than the 270win. Bullet placement and bullet construction are the most important factors in killing critters big or small.
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  #11  
Old 04-07-2013, 07:04 PM
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After using my 270 Winchester for hunting deer, it sits in the back of the safe, it's to destructive!
I've gone to the old 35 Remington for deer and black bear, my elk rifle is a 338 Win Mag, FWIW I'm building a 375 Ruger on a Savage 110 action, it'll surely go on my next elk hunt.
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  #12  
Old 04-07-2013, 09:35 PM
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1st off, I haven't ever shot a moose, but I read a lot. Jack O'Conner said that a Moose is a big animal, and that when shot, he takes on a moose sized hurt and starts looking for a place to lay down and die at. I can tell you that elk don't do that, unless you hit it in the right spot. Additionally, JOC tested the .270 on all manner of beasties, and found it up to the task of moose. He also tested the '06 on griz and found that it worked just fine on them. Our Canadian brothers used the .303 as their main battle rifle for 70 years and it was therefore a common caliber up north and Canadians used on everything (maybe even duh big bears)...it tested as adequete for moose. It also flings a 150 grainer at less velocity than a .270 does and a 180 at about 2,500 fps. That is not exactly hyper velocity, but it has proven to get the job done.

So, to answer your question....270 Winnie. Expect to find your bullet against the skin on the far side of the elk.

Here's why, the ammo is cheaper and easier to find, you're sure that it isn't going to die, it is plenty accurate, and it is easy to shoot (doesn't kick like a mule), barrels last longer and it will do the job just fine.
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  #13  
Old 04-07-2013, 10:48 PM
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I think your saying you will load your own 270WSM ammo if you go that route. If you compare the factory 150gr loads for example using the exact same bullet and company the 270 has muzzle velocity's between 2838 fps to 2860 fps, there is one load the Winchester 150gr E-Tip that's 2950 fps. The 270 WSM on the other hand with the 150gr loads are between 3080 fps to 3160 fps. That's more than 200 fps faster at the muzzle. There's bullets in the 90gr to 110gr you can use for varmints if you chose so with either of the 270's but IMHO that would be much more expensive than say a .223 or .243 or a 22LR. As far as velocity levels and trajectory you can get these bullet weights to more than 3600 fps. Double tap has a load for the 270 WSM with the 110gr TSX at 3585 fps from a 24 inch barrel. Either one truth be told will get the job done, the right bullet for the task at hand and a good shot placement to go with it and you'll have a freezer full of meat. I apologize, but can't help to be curious as to why you wouldn't load the .270 Win also ? The Weatherby S2 comes in the 270 Winchester and a 24 inch barrel and these are great guns if you wanted a 24 inch barrel, sub-moa guaranteed and no more or less than the Trophy XP.

Last edited by fred243; 04-07-2013 at 11:03 PM.
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  #14  
Old 04-08-2013, 01:41 AM
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The only relevant question to be answered here is this: Do you want a full length action or short action? Which rifle fits you better? When you find the rifle that feels right to you, regardless of which 270 it is, well...that's your rifle.

There just isn't enough difference between them to argue, one way or the other. Stick to heavy, well-made bullets, especially when you're going after elk.
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  #15  
Old 04-08-2013, 09:52 AM
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My very first Elk hunt years ago, I carried a .270 Winchester and loaded it up with just any old 130 bullet. I did not know anything about ballistics or firearms you might say. I did shoot an elk in the left shoulder but it just trotted away on up that mountain. It took me a good 35 minutes to reach the top and that elk did in in around 12 or less. Then it went down the other side, I caught up with it another 35 or 40 minutes later being skinned out.

Later I heard two loud shots, a pair of brothers shot my elk using a .300 win mag and .338 Win mag. I weighed in back then at 138 pounds soaking wet! I could not handle the recoil of such hunting calibers in those days, no way.

However, I could have used the 160 Nosler Partition they tell me and my .270 Winchester would have done just fine putting that elk down for the count. If one can not shoot his or her rifle accurately at 300 yards. Then you best move down in caliber or get a "recoil pad" to wear. They didn't have them in my younger days. I later used a basketball knee pad that helped me a bunch!

Now for the sake of RECOIL on your body, which does effect accuracy down range, I will advise you to choose the .30/06 as your caliber for elk and use a premium 180 or 200 grain bullet as in Nosler Partitions for your elk rifle. Save those magnums for later down the road OK. Most experts will tell you that the big game calibers starte at .30! Not 100% true if you use a premium bullet in your 270 Winchester or even a 25/06 by golly. I been there and done so gents!

Last edited by 2Bits; 04-10-2013 at 08:46 AM.
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  #16  
Old 04-08-2013, 10:23 AM
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Gun writer John Barsness wrote of his wife shooting a moose with a .270, to her complete satisfaction (but probably not the moose's )

Good enough endorsement for me, even if it's not the perfect moose shootin' caliber.
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Old 04-08-2013, 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by 2Bits View Post
My very first Elk hunt years ago, I carried a .270 Winchester and loaded it up with just any old 130 bullet. I did not know anything about ballistics or firearms you might say. I did shoot an elk in the left shoulder but it just trotted away on up that mountain.
Sounds like a classic case of poor shot placement. For a light caliber (.270) light weight bullet (130 grain) on elk the placement should be into the chest (preferably broadside) behind the leg to blow up in the lungs or heart.

I have friends who do well with .270s on elk with that placement, but I use 250 grain bullets in larger calibers to give me more leeway to shot angles and better penetration.
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  #18  
Old 04-08-2013, 03:19 PM
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I have several friends who have shot moose & elk with a .270 Win. No issues but they take broadside shots. Shot my only moose with a .300 Win mag. using 200 gr. TBBC at 15 yards quartering at me. Smashed ball & socket, put a 1/2 dollar whole through heart, broke a rib and laid on the inside of the hide on the opposite side. Bullet still weighed 178 gr. Not a shot I would've taken with any .270. I would be a more careful about my shot angles.
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Old 04-08-2013, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Hair smoker View Post
I have several friends who have shot moose & elk with a .270 Win. No issues but they take broadside shots. Shot my only moose with a .300 Win mag. using 200 gr. TBBC at 15 yards quartering at me. Smashed ball & socket, put a 1/2 dollar whole through heart, broke a rib and laid on the inside of the hide on the opposite side. Bullet still weighed 178 gr. Not a shot I would've taken with any .270. I would be a more careful about my shot angles.
With the 270, you would aim at the base of the neck in that pocket and drive the bullet thru the heart and lungs and still have a dead moose.
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Old 04-08-2013, 06:12 PM
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I have a left hand Savage .270 and it is ideal for deer and antelope in the wide open plains of eastern Montana. For the mountains in the western part of the state, where elk, moose and bear are on the menu, I remove the .270 barrel and put on my E. R. Shaw barrel in .338 / 06. Takes just a few minutes to swap out, and costs $200 from Brownells.I wouldn't hesitate to use the .270 on elk with the right bullet ,but the .338 / 06 with a 200 or 250 grain bullet is better suited for the big stuff.
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