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Old 04-10-2006, 03:36 PM   #1
Fork Horn
 
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Default BLR Caliber

I'm looking at a Browning BLR. I currently hunt mulies here in CO with a 30-30 marlin, but will be hunting Elk, Bear and Antelope occasionally. I may also have a chance at pigs in California with my brother. I've read all the cartridge debates and had settled on either a -06 or .308 (I know, flip a coin).

The dilema: I really like the ballistics of the 270 WSM (I know that if I choose any of the big game calibers I'll be able to do what I need to), and especially the fact that it is a short action and claims to have these ballistics with lighter recoil. it seems to combine the elements I like of both the .308 and -06 with minimal sacrafice and slightly better ballistics. It also seems to have more of what I like in the rifle itself with the exception of bullet capacity. If I go 270WSM I get 6lb 12oz rifle (w/o scope 4oz heavier than the .308 and 8oz lighter than the -06), that has the same LOP as the .308 but the barrel lenghth of the -06 22") in a shorter package. I'm a little uncomfortable with the overall lenght of the .308 for longer shots (stability) and wouldn't mind a little longer gun.

The question: Not making this a caliber debate, and focusing on the fact that I prefer a shorter action (LOP) and lighter recoil and considering the weight and barrel lengths above, am I really getting anything better or that different. Now that I write this, I guess it really comes down to recoil.

I want to hear your opinions (I know EKM will say go with the 30 Cal) because this will probably be my only big game rifle due to finances and wife (and no, I'm not getting rid of my wife or my 5 kids). I respect the insight of this group and want to make sure that there isn't anything that I haven't considered (I'm a lever guy, don't like bolt action). The BLR is a pricey gun and the 270 WSM even more so.

Thanks

Spud


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Old 04-10-2006, 05:44 PM   #2
 
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

I was very impressed with my friend's BLR in a .300 Win Mag. It fed smoothly and reliably and he was amazingly accurate with it even with iron sights. Sounds like the recoil may be more than you're after though. I'd go with the '06 and use lighter loads in it when you want or go "loaded for bear" when it's fitting. You can't beat the versatility of an '06.
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Old 04-10-2006, 06:03 PM   #3
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

My pick in the BLR would be the 7MM-08. I have had a couple of them and they will handle the kind of game your after with minimum recoil.
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Old 04-10-2006, 06:43 PM   #4
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

KA - I have shot a 300 Win and the recoil didn't seem that bad. I notice the recoil at the range not in the field. I would probably go with the 30-06 if I don't go with the 270WSM because of it's versitility. However. I probably would shoot a 165 grn bullet 90% of the time, but it would be nice to have the flexibility. I was concerned about the 270wsm's potential to handle heavier bullet, but based on the ballistics, I don't think it's an issue.It seems that 140's and 150's will do just fine. This is why it comes down to the LOP and recoil. I'd like something fairly pleasant to shoot at the range.

James - Thanks for your comments. I've seen you post before in praise of the 7mm-08 and have looked at it's because of your comments. I've been concerned that it seems to only be offered in 140 grn bullets. I was thinking that in the BLR the 270wsm configuration would give me a little longer, more stable barrell (20" vs 22") with the same LOP as the 7mm-08 and 308 configs. I'm not sure if the recoil would be comparable. I'm thinking the recoil on the WSM will be similar to a 30-06. I really like the concept of the 7mm-08 just would like a little longer gun and a little more variety of bullet wt. I know I'm limiting myself, by sticking with a BLR, but bolts have just never felt right to me, too many western movies and lever action .22 cals.

Spud
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Old 04-10-2006, 07:33 PM   #5
 
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

Ilooked at a BLR in 325 WSM verry nice gun . That would be my choice . Ballistics are real close to .338 win mag i'm told ,
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Old 04-11-2006, 10:31 AM   #6
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

Spud,
I'm a firm beliver that bigger is better,if I was to get a BLR,wich I'm doing as we speak(or type)I would go with the 270 WSM.The reason I say this is it's ability to drive a 150 gr bullet faster than the standard 270 win.
The 270 wsm would make a good cross-over rifle for plains deer and antelope to timber elk.Since you have been hunting with the Turdy-Turdy,you know your range I assume and no how to close the distance to make the shot.
If thinking it's going to be alittle light,look to the 300 wsm it's even better than the 270 wsm on elk and comes in your short cycle lever.
Top it off with a good 2-7 varible scope and have some good hunting.
I have killed elk with the 300 wsm and it did a relible job,and after watching a freinds wife totaly crap-can a bull last with the 270 wsm at 300 yds I would have full confidence with it also.
The fun of buying a new gun is the choices,there is always my absolutly favorite caliber the .338 win mag,but since you can't get it in the BLR,the 325 might be just as good,hhhhhhhhmmmmI might have to change my mind on that 270 wsm.
BBJ
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Old 04-11-2006, 10:13 PM   #7
 
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

I own a BLR in .308 and it was my primary hunting rifle for years. I used it for everything including moose and elk. Have made my longest shot to date with it, 250yds on a nice WT. Only ever passed on one shot because of range and that was 425yds on a B&C WT. I shoot both the 270WSM and 325WSM now, both in bolt guns with 24" barrels. Not sure of the barrel length on the BLR in the short mags, but unless it was at least 22" I probably wouldn't bother, more recoil and muzzle blast and not enough barrel to generate the speed to make it worthwhile. Since I prefer the short action BLRs ove the long action versions (balance and handling) I would stick with the .308 and have at it with either 150gr or 165gr premium bullets.
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Old 04-12-2006, 02:11 PM   #8
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

Guys, appreciate the input. I know that there are a lot of choices and that everything from 7mm-08 up to the magnums have their + and -. I doesn't look like there are any major down sides to the 270wsm in the BLR. The more I look at the ballistics, the more I like the calibur. It seems to be the one WSM that really has a good mix of the bennefits of the short actions and the magnums while minimizing the down sides of both. Now the only thing I have to face is the cost of the rifle and the price of ammo.

At least I know that if I chicken out I can always go with the 30-06 or the .308 and be fine.

Thanks again.

Spud
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Old 04-12-2006, 08:54 PM   #9
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

The thing about a 270WSM, or any of the WSM's, when chambered in the BLR is that the BLR comes with a 22 inch barrel. You WILL NOT reach the published velocities and the associated ballistics that you are liking so much. The ballistics will be a little bit better than the old 270 but they aren't going to be nearly as signifigant as you might think being shot out of a BLR. You will loose about 75 - 100 fps with the shorter barrel length in comparison with published velocities. The more powder a cartridge burns and the higher the velocity it is able to generate the more speed loss per inch of barrel as a general rule.

A WSM or any cartridge that burns magnum charges of powder needs at least 24 inches of barrel to reach their potential and 26 is better. I put a 25.5" barrel on my 300 wsm so I could actually take advantage of the magnum velocities it offered and it should actually surpass the published velocities if I ever chronograph a factory load.


My personal choice in the BLR would be the 358 Winchester but ammo availability is a concern. My second choice would definetly be a toss up between the standard .270, 30-06, .308 or the 7mm-08. If you want a magnum I would definetly go with either the 7mm Rem mag or the 300 Win mag. Both of these come with 24 inch barrels which is the minimum barrel length for a magnum IMHO. The difference in recoil between the .270wsm and the 7mm Rem mag is neglegable.
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Old 04-12-2006, 09:20 PM   #10
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Default RE: BLR Caliber

BB and I are waiting for the .338 BLR!
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