Ruger Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,866 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Recently, I had a long debate as to whether I wanted my main varmint gun to be an Savage 24 O/U .22 WMR over .410 (3" chamber) or a new Savage .17 HMR with a heavy-weight barrel. I chose the Savage 24, and have had very good luck with the combo gun, especially on Woodchucks. I just recently saw someone explaining the 5 reasons why the .17 HMR is far superior to the venerable .22 WMR. He stated that the .17 HMR killed everything from Squirrels to Turkeys better than the .22 WMR, with the right bullet. I can't rap my head around the idea that a little .17 HMR with 15-20 grain bullets, can take down a Woodchuck or a Turkey as well as the .22 mag can with 30-40 grain bullets. So, in your opinion, who is right?

P.S, my decision to get the Savage 24 has already been made, so this is for conversation's sake.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
658 Posts
I went through the same decision about two years ago. I went the other direction because of what the HMR was better at. I even went with the Savage you referenced. It is absolutely amazing in accuracy! It does have more velocity than the mag, but the slightly larger hole would seem to have more of an affect on actual killing power. I think you are getting pretty close on some things and I do not think one is just inherently better for everything than the other one. The HMR was better for me in what I was using it for plain and simple, but I was seriously contemplating going the other direction. I shoot small game (prairie dogs etc) with it and do a lot of target shooting with it. If I go any larger on game, I go to the .223 anyway. My choice was made because of this. One thing not mentioned, high winds play havoc with the little .17!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,866 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
I went through the same decision about two years ago. I went the other direction because of what the HMR was better at. I even went with the Savage you referenced. It is absolutely amazing in accuracy! It does have more velocity than the mag, but the slightly larger hole would seem to have more of an affect on actual killing power. I think you are getting pretty close on some things and I do not think one is just inherently better for everything than the other one. The HMR was better for me in what I was using it for plain and simple, but I was seriously contemplating going the other direction. I shoot small game (prairie dogs etc) with it and do a lot of target shooting with it. If I go any larger on game, I go to the .223 anyway. My choice was made because of this. One thing not mentioned, high winds play havoc with the little .17!
The wind was a consideration for me as well. Some of these farmer's fields get pretty breezy in PA. Nothing like out west though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
73 Posts
I own both. Flatter shooting lighter projectile vs. more energy down range with a heavier projectile..... your choice. Depends on the conditions, ammo, and game.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
350 Posts
I generally go "old school" when it comes to firearms, & tend to favor slower, heavier hitting bullets/loads. Yet for some reason I have developed an unabashed fondness for the .17 HMR. It's a ridiculously accurate cartridge, even out of my Henry lever gun, & is plain damn fun to shoot. Besides which, the bulk of my varmint shooting is done at distances w/in 100 yards. I don't need to utterly obliterate pesky critters, just get 'em to a click past "Breathing". In such instances the .17 HMR does it's job quite well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,866 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I've heard that it is the most accurate rimfire cartridge, that is definitely a major advantage it has over the .22 WMR.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
338 Posts
My ex-lady friend and I competed in High Power rifle matches at 200 yards for over 7 years. I shot a 499/500 and a perfect 500/500 with a Marlin 917V 17HMR. Bonnie shot similar scores with her .17HMR at 200 yards.

I also own several firearms in .22 Mag. While I can see an advantage of having the heavier bullet for hunting, the .22 mag will not even come close to the accuracy of the .17HMR. I tried to tweak the .22 Mag so I could compete in the 200 yard matches but was unsuccessful.

Incidentally, the .17HMR ballistic tips are much more accurate than the hollow points.

If you get one, get some GOOD cleaning gear and good solvent like Butch's Bore Shine as a new .17HMR barrel will copper foul. Hoppes #9 works but not as quickly.

We used the chemicals and did not scrub the bore. Sometimes it took 3 days of wet patch/sitting until we got a clean bore. I'd put a wet patch through the bore then go watch TV. Repeat as needed until you get clean patches.

Flash
 

·
Freedom, Thank a VET!!!
Joined
·
1,625 Posts
The wife and I both tried out the .17cal in Savage two years ago. We shot Fox, ****, Opsum, Ground Squirrels. These rifles were extremely accurate. Mine for a fact shot 1/4 groups at 50 yds the wife's shot 3/8's inch groups. My rifle shot 1/2 inch groups by another shooter more than once.

However, if the wind is blowing your going to Cuss like a Banshee. The 20 grn bullet goes all over the place. I also notede that the smaller caliber was NOT keeping down the critters I shot dead center in the vitals. They were getting up in a couple of minutes and trotting off to the woods.

The wife and I made note in the jornal keeping a record of the results etc. Some 6 months I made the decision to trade off those pesky little .17's for a pair of .22-Magnums and have never been disappointed in doing so. This caliber with a 50 grn bullet has put down coyotes out to 75 yds, one shot kill. Nothing has trotted off after hitting their vitals. I VOTE is for the .22-Magnum evertime out the gate on critters. Now punching paper and no wind, the .17 will take the honors.;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
951 Posts
The 17 is a good cartridge but doesn't offer much of an advantage to me in Kansas where it seems the wind is always a cross wind unless I'm riding then it turns into a head wind no matter what direction I'm going:confused:

I've had a Marlin 25M for many years. My dad bought a Savage 17, I really haven't seen very much "practical" difference in accuracy. I'm keeping my 22;). If I need more range I got a 223.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
97 Posts
I went the .17HMR route with the Savage heavy barrel 93R17 TR. I do like the looks of the "tactical stock" and fluted barrel. In retrospect, I should have just gone for a standard sporter. Mine is pretty heavy for offhand shooting and walking around. And with only a .17 cal. hole in the barrel, all the barrels are heavy enough. I am with the others who love the 17HMR as long as it is either calm or the range to the critter is short. If it is farther away, or the wind is blowing (like it almost always is when you are in the varmint fields) I reach for a .223. Also, if I feel the need for a 40 gr bullet at 2100 fps, I can always load 8.0 gr of Blue Dot in a .223 case and have it. I think my .223 Blue Dot loads are more accurate than most .22 mags I have seen. YMMV.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
59 Posts
Sold a 17 (marlin) after shooting it and my Marlin ss 883t 22wmr on the same 10-15mph wind day. At 100yds the 17 was all over the paper and was getting 2" inch groups with the 22wmr. On a calm day the 17 shot great
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top