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Old July 25, 2013, 08:54 PM   #1
baddarryl
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.270 for Varmints?

I know there are 90gr bullets available for varmint work. How small of game can you take without blowing it to smithereens?
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Old July 25, 2013, 09:39 PM   #2
big al hunter
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Quote:
without blowing it to smithereens?
I thought that was what we were supposed to do?????

If you don't like what the 90 grain bullet does try the 130 or heavier it will go right through with less damage. What were you planning on shooting with it?
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Old July 25, 2013, 09:44 PM   #3
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Almost anything you hit a varmint with in .270 is going to blow a sizeable chunk out of. I regularly use my .243 with 100 grain bullets for woodchucks cause well 100 grains is what my rifle likes. Anyways I have had woodchucks decapitated by it and if you look at some of my photos you will see a 3 inch exit wound on others. What varmints are you targeting and at what ranges.
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Old July 25, 2013, 09:56 PM   #4
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Really just a question of curiosity. In reality the only thing around here (SE NC) might be Coyotes that would interest me. I have never done it though.
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Old July 25, 2013, 10:13 PM   #5
Brian Pfleuger
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Even a woodchuck won't be "blown to smithereens" but it'll certainly blow big pieces out of just about anything smaller than a deer, depending on the bullet to a great degree. Woodchucks would probably be blow in half, or very nearly. Coyotes would probably have exit wounds in the 4" range. It depends to no small degree on shot placement and bullet construction.
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Old July 25, 2013, 11:33 PM   #6
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It probably won't tear a coyote into pieces, but it will most likely leave a substantial exit wound, enough to destroy any value to the pelt.

If your just going out to kill some, it will do that with authority.

You hit small varmint with a 110 grain Hornady V-max and I would expect it to turn small varmint into pieces.
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Old July 26, 2013, 12:40 AM   #7
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I use my .270 for chipmunks, squirrels, prairie dogs, rattlesnakes, cottontails, jackrabbits...............


Speer 90 grain HP's (or "bucket mouths" as my family refers to them) work quite well for turning four legged pests into coyote food, as do Hornady 110 grain V-max, but not so good if your trying to fill a stew pot. I load both to about 3,100 fps..........there usually isn't a whole lot left, you definitely know when you hit your target.

The 130 grain SP will make quite a mess on smaller game, and even some 160 grain SP's I've shot at rabbits will make a chunky red mist out of small furry mammals with a good body shot.
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Old July 26, 2013, 06:21 AM   #8
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Sounds like the easiest solution would be to fit a scope for my AR. I would want to preserve the pelts certainly. Save the .270 for Bambi and Porky Pig.
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Old July 26, 2013, 07:07 AM   #9
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A friend of mine uses a custom 6mm-284 for P-dogs and similar. At 3-400 yards, it turns them into a "red mist"...........some pics he showed were amazing.

I would imagine your 270 would have similar results
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Old July 26, 2013, 11:31 AM   #10
Art Eatman
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If saving the pelt is important, a downloaded .223 with a non-expanding bullet would probably work best.
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Old July 26, 2013, 11:36 AM   #11
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I have shot four or five groundhogs with my savage .270wsm with federal 130 gr powershok and it will quite literally cut them in half, as far as coyotes I've never shot one with a .270 but if you want to save the pelt I would choose a different caliber (it will blow a baseball to softball size hole in a deer depending on the size of the deer and the path the bullet takes through the animal).
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Old July 26, 2013, 12:43 PM   #12
FrankenMauser
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Pfleuger
Even a woodchuck won't be "blown to smithereens" but it'll certainly blow big pieces out of just about anything smaller than a deer, depending on the bullet to a great degree. Woodchucks would probably be blow in half, or very nearly. Coyotes would probably have exit wounds in the 4" range. It depends to no small degree on shot placement and bullet construction.
That depends on what part of the country you live in.
In New York, Pennsylvania, etc., you're absolutely right. Those 'woodchucks' / groundhogs are pretty large, and will mostly just have big holes blown in them. Even the marmots are larger than many other areas.

But, across the Midwest and Western U.S., the term 'woodchuck' can be applied to everything from large ground squirrels, to marmots, depending on the area. Most of those 'varmint' species coming in at roughly the size of a large prairie dog / small raccoon.
Most marmots will be blown in half, or better.
Most prairie dogs end up as a few scattered body parts ("Red Mist!").
And, most ground squirrels either disappear ("Red Mist!"), or have a clean hole punched through them (not enough body mass for proper expansion).

The only animals that come to mind that don't tend to 'explode' (in my neck of the woods), are badgers and porcupines. The badgers might be really messed up, but their tough, loose skin tends to hold the body together. Porcupines are just tough SOBs. It takes a lot to make a porcupine a 'reactive target'.



(Standard disclaimer: Obviously, some animals may be off limits in your area. Don't do anything illegal, just because people in the next state are able to. )
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Old July 26, 2013, 02:25 PM   #13
Sure Shot Mc Gee
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.270 for Varmints? I know there are 90gr bullets available for varmint work

Quote:
Sounds like the easiest solution would be to fit a scope for my AR. How small of game can you take without blowing it to smithereens?
There is a difference between varmints and game. ARs are near perfect for hunting most varmints and a couple of game species. Unless you intend to stuff a priarie dog or eat one There is no need to worry about damage control as I see it. The speed of sound is 1,126 ft/s. So if your bullet is traveling over that speed or twice even in some cases? {like that 270 w/ its 90 gr.Sierra HP bullet could develop} You can expect to see some nasty tissue damage. Especially if bone attempts to block the bullets path. So if you intend to eat something whether it be a deer or a Diamondback rattlesnake. The best meat saving shot you can make is one to the animals head. Any where's else besides the head it becomes a crap shoot what you will encounter when walking up to the dispatched animal. Just another opinion like the many comments made before this one.

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Old July 27, 2013, 05:32 PM   #14
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I have used the 270 on yotes and believe me it is just too much gun if you want to keep the hides!!! I have cut several ( over 25 } in half. The best I have done is a 6" hole out the opposite side. Go to a smaller caliber say a 223 and you'll kill them just as fast and have something left for the hero photos.
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Old July 27, 2013, 07:48 PM   #15
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And besides the obvious excessive damage, it's a rather expensive caliber for varmits..
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Old July 28, 2013, 10:46 PM   #16
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.22-250 Remington
Prairie dogs to Whitetails
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Old July 29, 2013, 10:17 PM   #17
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related

Not quite an answer to the OP, but related. My budget ADL .270 will throw big game weight (130) and varmint weight (110) slugs to the same dang zero, yes it will!

My .270 load will drive a 110 gr slug to just a tad over 3000 fps with no trouble.

But I have yet to shoot anything but paper with 110's.
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Old July 29, 2013, 10:39 PM   #18
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You hit small varmint with a 110 grain Hornady V-max and I would expect it to turn small varmint into pieces.
Depending upon the range, yes.

I loaded the 90 Grain Speer HP and 110gr V-Max's to 3K+ ..... the bullet would invariably violently fragment in prairie dogs ("Pink Mist, with fragments sometimes wounding nearby critters) at ranges under 100 yards. Further out, hits would just pop them open, with the varous parts usually still connected by the hide ....

100 gr soft points would not even have time to open up much- punching 1/2 inch holes through 'em....... though they would penetrate an inch or two of mound to get the ones that would not expose more than their nose ....

Most of the coyotes I shot were with 150 gr Gamekings loaded to 2900, at under 100 yards..... those will punch a hole through a coyote from any angle ..... did not tear them up badly at all. Shoot them low in the chest ...
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Old July 29, 2013, 11:07 PM   #19
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And besides the obvious excessive damage, it's a rather expensive caliber for varmits..
Handload, and buy your components in bulk = cheaper than factory .223.

It may not be the cheapest way to kill grass rats, BUT: Knowing you can hit a target 1/4 the size of Bambi's Boiler Room, at various distances, from field positions, with the same rig you'll take after Bambi come November is absolutely PRICELESS.

Quote:
The best meat saving shot you can make is one to the animals head.
Foolishness, that.

The head is small and nearly constantly in motion..... not to mention surrounded by a round skull that will deflect glancing shots ... Unless you are at contact distance (and don't do this with a .270WIN- it's messy. I learned this fact the hard way as a teenager!)

Put an expanding bullet from a major caliber centerfire rifle through the lungs of any deer, and it WILL die. They are animals made of flesh and blood and bone, not armored vehichles..... they might go 100 yards, but they must breathe to run, and they can NOT breathe if you just punched a 1/2 inch hole through their lungs. If you hit them in the lungs, there will be almost no meat wasted, even if you insist on keeping the ribs (I do).
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Old July 30, 2013, 02:09 AM   #20
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Foolishness, that.

The head is small and nearly constantly in motion..... not to mention surrounded by a round skull that will deflect glancing shots ... Unless you are at contact distance (and don't do this with a .270WIN- it's messy. I learned this fact the hard way as a teenager!)

Put an expanding bullet from a major caliber centerfire rifle through the lungs of any deer, and it WILL die. They are animals made of flesh and blood and bone, not armored vehichles..... they might go 100 yards, but they must breathe to run, and they can NOT breathe if you just punched a 1/2 inch hole through their lungs. If you hit them in the lungs, there will be almost no meat wasted, even if you insist on keeping the ribs (I do).
Oh, come on, jimbob. He said it was a meat-saving shot. He didn't say it was a smart shot.

Besides... we've been over this before, many times. If a hunter is up to it, it is not our place to judge whether it is a good or bad shot. The hunter holding the firearm is the best judge of their own skill and the conditions they're presented with.

I will admit that I'm biased, though. A little over 50% of my big game kills have been head shots - all the way out to a called left eye shot on a doe Antelope at 650 yards. All of those head shots had ZERO wasted meat, and tasted amazing without the adrenaline dump a body shot causes.


The only reason I'm replying to the off-topic head shot diversion that is occurring, is because practice on small game was one of the major reasons I was capable of, and confident in, those head shots. Much of the time, I used my favorite "Red Mist!" load: .270 Winchester with Speer 100 gr 'Bucket Mouth' hollow points, on top of a hefty dose of H4895.
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Old July 30, 2013, 08:32 AM   #21
Art Eatman
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"The head is small and nearly constantly in motion..."

Aw, I've watched many a deer imitate a statue. Not long enough for birds to decorate it, but long enough for my intentions. I came to really, really appreciate that.
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