.17 HMR vs. .22 Mag


October 25, 2008, 11:25 AM
im stuck between these two calibers. ive done lots of reading but everybody wants opinions on hunting. im STRICTLY target shooting with this gun. the two guns im lookin at are both marlin bolt actions. the .17 has a bull barrel and the .22 mag does not. what is going to be the best target gun? im looking to shoot 100-150 yards maybe even a little farther. im even open to other calibers, but im wanting to spend 300 at the most just to plink around with. ive already got a custom built 10/22 but i want to shoot farther and have so much drop at the distance im shooting. whats the best rifle for me?

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October 25, 2008, 12:11 PM
The .17 seems to have the accuracy advantage when it comes to the ammunition quality.

But the .22 Mag is probably less effected by the wind at longer range.


George S.
October 25, 2008, 12:20 PM
I'm in the same boat; I want to add another rimfire to my collection and my use will also be plinking and paper punching.

I had a 917V a couple years ago and it was a very accurate rifle out to 100 yards with the 4-12x40 Bushnell scope I had mounted. But it didn't have the T-900 trigger and the pull was heavy. I could easily shoot 1/2 groups at 50 yds and 3/4" groups at 100. My range has a 200 yard target line but I never really bothered to shoot at that distance. Too far to walk! :D

IMHO, I would go with a .22 mag rifle partly because the ammo will cost less and you can still get excellent accuracy with this caliber once you figure out what bullet weight the rifle likes best. I have a Ruger Single-Six so a .22 mag rifle would just give me another way to burn up .22 mag ammo.

But I would also look into the Savage 93 series for a .22 mag rifle. Their 93FV is a bull-barrel rifle and comes with scope mounts. Everything I have read says the Savage AccuTrigger is better out of the box than the Marlin T-900 trigger. You could swap in a Rifle Basix trigger in the Marlin, but that is extra cost over and above a rifle and scope and could push you beyond your $300 budget.

My local Cabela's has a sale going on right now for the Marlin 925M at $179. That's probably a decent price, but I personally can't decide yet because of what I have read regarding the triggers. Both the Savage 93 and the 925M seem to be very close in terms of accuracy.

The Savage with the bull-barrel may be a better deal especially if you are not going to be hauling it around in the woods although it only weighs 6 lbs.

Good luck with your decision and post a range report once you get everything dialed in.

October 25, 2008, 12:50 PM
+1 for the .22 magnum.

It's not a major wind-bucker but it'll do better than the .17 (and you won't have to buy new cleaning equipment).

I've been mulling a new .22 mag. too - maybe a Ruger, a Henry lever, or a CZ.


October 25, 2008, 01:03 PM
Another +1 for the .22 mag, I own 3 right now (me and the boys), and have had excellent luck using them on varmints such as fox and coyotes out to 125 or 130 yards. BTW my fav .22 mag was a Ruger M77 .22mag that I had years ago, and seriously regret letting go. In quiet conditions I have clover leafed 3 and 4 shot groups using CCI's at 75 to 100 yards. Great fun guns to shoot. Currently have an old Winchester 255 that is a boatload of fun and shoots accurately enough to impress. (Bought the boys a pair of Marlin Bolts, and while they are plain guns they are plenty fun enough too).

October 25, 2008, 01:32 PM
Ok, so i've decided on the .22 mag. Now i need to decide which one. I know for a fact that i want a bull barrel for accuracy, but still don't want to spend more than 300 for the gun itself, the scope is another story. Where should i look for .22 mags online? The closest Cabelas is 2 hours away and id rather not make a trip down unless i knew the had what i wanted.

Also, on another note. Who makes decent match grade .22 mag ammo?

October 25, 2008, 01:46 PM
I have a Marlin 925M, and it doesn't have a bull barrel per se, I can't get it hot even after 50+ rounds of fast shooting. It will put the Federal 50 grain ammo into a sub moa twenty shot group. :)

There isn't 'match' grade ammo for either the .17 or the .22 mag, but quality hunting ammo will provide excellent groups once you figure out what your gun prefers.

EDIT: I just measured the barrel at the muzzle and got a diameter of .625".

October 25, 2008, 02:25 PM

Great shootin guns. Love them, wish I had never let mine go!

October 25, 2008, 02:35 PM
I would strongly consider the .17 for the range you are looking into. They are flat shooting a fairly accurate. the ammo price difference per box is not that much maybe a dollar or two so I wouldn't worry about that to much.

October 25, 2008, 02:38 PM
Here's another...



XD-40 Shooter
October 25, 2008, 02:50 PM
I have a Marlin 925-M 22 mag and I really like it, great rifle. With the open sights and cheap Armscor 40 grain ammo, I'm getting 2" groups at 100 yards, shooting from a rest.:D

October 25, 2008, 04:15 PM
My little 925M shoot pretty well too.

95 Turbo Coupe
October 25, 2008, 05:24 PM
+1 for the .17hmr, Ive only had it out twice. Both days there was moderate wind. I was seeing 3 shot groups in the 1.5in range @ 100 yards. This was with Hornady 17gr vmax. Im sure she has a bit more left in her.

Marlin 917vsf
BKL 261 1pc mount
Mueller APV


George S.
October 25, 2008, 05:36 PM
As far as finding a rifle, you can always call a specific Cabela's store to see if they have one in stock. Same with a Wal-Mart if they sell guns (not all of them do). There are 3 Wally Worlds near you so one may have gun sales. Even if they don't have the rifle you want, they can usually get on in a couple days from one of their warehouses.

Have you tried other sporting goods stores? Local gun shops? Pawn shops? There should be a number of places to find what you want locally or maybe Topeka. Is Kansas City too far away??

To me, the only problem with online ordering is having to deal with a local gun shop or somebody with an FFL to do a transfer. Buying locally is not a problem by itself and it certainly helps a business, but many shops will charge a fee to do the transfer. So when you add something like a $25 transfer fee and shipping costs, and an online price can jump dramatically.

October 25, 2008, 06:07 PM
I prefer a .22 WMR. It is a great caliber and a better hunting round IMHO. I picked up a Ruger 77/22M for $400 a couple weeks ago. Great rifle!!!

October 25, 2008, 06:20 PM
Beautiful rifle Mike. I am so jealous.

October 25, 2008, 06:45 PM
yes the local wal-mart does sell guns and both of the marlins i mentioned are sold there. kansas city is two hours away and is where cabelas is. ill hit up some of the local pwan shops, but they tend to screw you around here. ill post up the gun when i get it

October 25, 2008, 08:56 PM
+1 for the 22 wmr savage bull barrel got one not as effected by wind as the 17 hmr

October 25, 2008, 09:05 PM
Great lookin' rifle, FMJMike !


October 25, 2008, 09:27 PM
so ive pretty much narrowed it down to these two.

MArlin 982VS

Savage 93FVSS w/Accu Trigger

both are in my price range and within an hour to pickup. which one should it be?

October 25, 2008, 09:31 PM
prefer a .22 WMR. It is a great caliber and a better hunting round IMHO. I picked up a Ruger 77/22M for $400 a couple weeks ago. Great rifle!!!

I agree! mines the same and it loves any of the 30 grn stuff.


October 25, 2008, 09:37 PM
garv - To be perfectly honest with you, it doesn't matter. Both are fantastic firearms, and both will be VERY accurate.

October 26, 2008, 12:08 AM
if you are strickly paper punching then ther is no contest, and no controversy; a 17 will out punch a 22 mag all day for accuracy.

October 26, 2008, 12:14 AM
and not being a told you so nanny or anything, but there is no way a 22 mag, has better wind bucking ability than a 17; b.c. characteristics, and sheer velocity tell us so. a 17 zero'd at 100 yds, typically leaves the bbl, at 2600 plus fps, and now a lot of dudes , with better made bbls now, get 2700 fps. This is centerfire speed folks. at 100 yds, with a 1.5 inch height scope, the round only goes up about .5 inch at 50 yds, drops 3 inches at 150, and 7 inches at 200 yds.
a 17 leaving the bbl at 2600 fps, is faster at 100 yds, than a 22 mag is at the muzzle. a 22 mag leaving the muzzle at 2000 to 2200 fps, will lose fully almost half it's muzzle speed, by the time it gets to 100 yds.
Energy is doing the same things, a 22 mag has more energy out to about 80 yds, after that, the 17 takes over out to all ranges, simply because it retains it's speed so much better.
I have regularly taken coyote out to 150 yds with a 17, most would never even attempt that shot with a 22 mag...

October 26, 2008, 12:52 AM
I have regularly taken coyote out to 150 yds with a 17, most would never even attempt that shot with a 22 mag...


Have to disagree with ya there. Took plenty of yotes and fox at that range with no problem.

October 26, 2008, 01:43 AM
+1 on the .17. I have a Savage 97 with the acutrigger. Fantastic gun. The wind does come into play with the 17, but it shoots petter then my buddys 22 mag. by far. I dont know if this is the caliber its self or the gun but i am sold!

October 26, 2008, 03:16 AM
I have both, a CZ452 classic in .22 magnum and a CZ 452 American in 17HMR.

Of the two the .17HMR has the best accuracy.

Personally I think they are both great rounds.

Pick the one that tickles your fancy the most.

October 27, 2008, 10:18 PM
well i changed my mind and went with the 17 since im strictly target shooting.

Marlin 917V .17HMR with bull barrel
went ahead and slapped on an old simmons 3-9x32 scope i had laying around

October 27, 2008, 11:14 PM
Good choice. I have a CZ 453 .17hmr and it is crazy accurate. Your will love your new rifle.

October 28, 2008, 12:29 AM
yessir, i think you will love that one!:)

95 Turbo Coupe
October 28, 2008, 04:49 AM
Good choice!

General Geoff
October 28, 2008, 04:51 AM
Nice rifle. Like the shag carpet, too :)

October 28, 2008, 09:00 AM
Love my Savage 17. I would like to see some tests with the new ballistic tip 22 mags though.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
October 28, 2008, 10:16 AM
Strictly target shooting, there is no comparison - the .17 Hummer will do the trick! Good choice in the Marlin - you will be pleased.

October 29, 2008, 03:32 PM
ive come to the conclusion that the scope im using isnt adequate for the job im wanting to do. now i need some scope suggestions. my scope eye is the weaker of my two eyes, so i need something thats fairly powerful. im not looking to spend more then 200, but i need something that ill be able to see out of at 100-150 yards

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