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Old January 18, 2013, 06:26 PM   #1
dbaum
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squirrel hunting with 17hmr.

Just got a savage 17hmr.Its broke in and shooting great groups.With the 17 gr. Vmax ammo-and taking head shots, whatn u think?I understand it tears stuff up-but sayin head shots?
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Old January 18, 2013, 06:29 PM   #2
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Would you like me to post some squirrel gore to show you what a 17 grain .17 HMR v-max do to grey squirrels?

My other thought on this is that the full metal jacket and hollow point bullets do less damage to the meat.

The terminal ballistics vary by distance. Sometimes it blows them apart, other times you will get a small exit wound. If you aim right behind the shoulder and hit bone the damage is extensive. If you gut shot one and it avoids any substantial bone it will leave a relatively small hole with organs blown through it.
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Old January 18, 2013, 06:37 PM   #3
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Here are some examples of what it does to squirrel.

The one with the missing leg and sun shining through it was probably about 30-40 yards out. The leg was found about 6 feet from the squirrel.
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Old January 18, 2013, 06:39 PM   #4
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The aforementioned severed limb and an example of what happens when you gut shoot one from 50-70 yards

edit: nevermind, for some reason im having problems attaching them.
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Old January 18, 2013, 07:09 PM   #5
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Seems to ruin a bit of good eating.
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Old January 18, 2013, 07:27 PM   #6
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Most rifles chambered for this cartridge are accurate enough for head shots with a decent field rest at reasonable ranges. I try to shoot 'em in the head no matter the cartridge.
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Old January 18, 2013, 07:39 PM   #7
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I suggest some .17 rifles can be superb for pin-point accuracy. However I think it is way too much power for such small game. A common low-cost bolt action Marlin shooting CCI standard velocity ammo could do as well with less damage. As an example, I might use the .17 for a neck shot out beyond 100 yards for a coyote. But I'd use a standard or sub-sonic .22 for closer small game in the woods.
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Old January 18, 2013, 08:31 PM   #8
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I hunt squirrels with my savage .17 hmr with the 20 grain hollow points and the damage is much less than the .17 grain vmax.
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Old January 18, 2013, 08:33 PM   #9
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I was thinking abut using mine to do some rabbit hunting. Since i want to eat the rabbits I think I stick with the .22.
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Old January 18, 2013, 08:37 PM   #10
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I head shoot 'em with a single six hunter. 20gr CCI GP. Doesn't do too much damage. But the 17gr Vmax and especially the Winchester Supreme 17gr make a mess like they ate a lit M80.

Like I said though...thats the CCI GPs out of a 7 and 1/2 inch pistol at 25-30 yards. They may wreak more havoc out of a rifle.
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Old January 19, 2013, 12:34 AM   #11
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The 20 grain hollow points put a dime sized hole (or smaller) in a squirrel, I've shot them from 20-120 yards with that result. They don't near as much damage as the .17 grain ballistic tips.
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Old January 19, 2013, 12:34 AM   #12
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Thanks-I think I'll stick with the .22 until I shoot some different ammo out of the .17. I will give it a try with the hollow points I think.
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Old January 19, 2013, 03:17 AM   #13
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The Savage 17s are amazingly accurate rifles. So much so, that putting a 3x9 scope on one is a waste of the gun's potential. Get a scope that goes up to at least 20x and if you have a stable enough platform, you can shoot the twig the squirrel is standing on from 100yds away and watch him fall to his death. No lost meat there... Seriously though, a Savage 17hmr with an accutrigger is an awesome rifle for the money.
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Old January 19, 2013, 06:57 AM   #14
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If you're going to use a 17hmr for squirrel, I would definitely be shooting the less destructive 20 grain soft points. But I prefer a .22lr for squirrel myself. A bushy tailed rat isnt that hard to kill. CCI 20gr. gamepoints should work pretty good.




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Old January 19, 2013, 10:10 AM   #15
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The perfect Squirrell rifle is the 17 Mach 2 ! The Hummer is too much for the tree rats !
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Old January 19, 2013, 01:06 PM   #16
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^Matter of perspective, it kills them really well. I can't remember wounding one with the .17 HMR and it ever getting away, Dead on impact. We hunt them as varmint because they burrow into the house and they make a significant impact on eating as much of the pecan crop as they can. We have a couple outdoor cats that have developed a taste for squirrel, they seem to like the giant holes that it makes.

I do agree with you that the .17 HM2 moves out at a much better velocity if your hunting them for meat, we just want them dead and the HMR does a good job of thinning them out around the house.
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Old January 19, 2013, 03:21 PM   #17
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If I were shooting them as vermin and not saving any meat Id just use a shotgun. Or if you're looking for explosive action a .220 swift scatters them pretty well
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Old January 19, 2013, 06:32 PM   #18
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I did end up using the 17 hmr today,but only shot 1 with it.Used the 20 gr. hollow point small game CCI.Could not take a head shot,but went thru behind the front leg exiting out of the neck.No bad damage.Lost 1 front leg.Gotta lot more testing to do.Very accurate,cannot shoot thru any amount of brush.(found that out on the second attempt at a far target thru brush)Love the gun.I'll keep Yall informed-but prob on hunting forum.
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Old January 19, 2013, 08:44 PM   #19
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Ever consider an accurate scoped air gun? If you limit yourself to head shots, they are great. I've had the most fun shooting squirrels with an air gun. Gives me more of a sense of accomplishment.
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Old January 19, 2013, 09:09 PM   #20
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I think there are a lot of good choices for taking squirrels. I like the WMR solid CCI. This caliber is great for either head or through the rib cage, with no death dance, or running off. For red squirrels I prefer the HP WMR, or what I have in my hands.
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Old January 19, 2013, 09:23 PM   #21
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I've shot squirrels with airguns thru the 12 ga.They all have thier place.Here in WI the woods are now barren- and 50-100 yard shots are possible.I thought I'd give the 17hmr a try.And Its a new gun to try.In early fall-I'd go with the shotty or .22 when shots are close.Just a excuse for another gun!(LOL)100 yard squirrles! I told the wife I needed it.I'm gonna use it till end of jan(season closes)

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Old January 19, 2013, 09:25 PM   #22
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excellent eating by the way.Love squirrel hunting-great fun.
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Old January 19, 2013, 09:49 PM   #23
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Quote:
I've shot squirrels with airguns thru the 12 ga.They all have thier place.Here in WI the woods are now barren- and 50-100 yard shots are possible.I thought I'd give the 17hmr a try.And Its a new gun to try.In early fall-I'd go with the shotty or .22 when shots are close.Just a excuse for another gun!(LOL)100 yard squirrles! I told the wife I needed it.I'm gonna use it till end of jan(season closes
)
Excellent excuse for another gun! for those shots, the HMR would have the edge. I am interested in the new 17 WSM for the same reason. To fill a nitch, and to get another gun.
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Old January 20, 2013, 05:20 AM   #24
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If you're going to use any .17 caliber rimfire at 100 yards for squirrel, make sure there is NO wind whatsoever and that the squirrel doesnt fart in your direction. Either one will probably cause you to miss.
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Old January 20, 2013, 10:27 AM   #25
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Quote:
If you're going to use any .17 caliber rimfire at 100 yards for squirrel, make sure there is NO wind whatsoever and that the squirrel doesnt fart in your direction. Either one will probably cause you to miss.
Actually wind drift is less with the HMR than it is with the WMR.
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