Should I chop my .270 WSM barrel?


February 15, 2009, 09:57 PM
Hey All,

So I have a Weatherby .270WSM with a 24" tube that to me seems a little end-heavy compared to my other hunting rifles. I handload for it, and I'm getting a pressure-safe 3400fps with 130gr Nosler Accubond. At these speeds and at close range the bullets would likely shrapnel, however for long range (can you say Antelope) it might put them in the FPS sweet spot.

"They" say that you need at least a 24" barrel for WSM calibers to make them worthwhile. Seems to me, in this rifle at least, that I'm running Weatherby speeds (Not that I'm complaining!) and it wouldn't hurt things if it ran a little slower in terms of game-taking capability. So, the fact that the gun feels a little end heavy made me think about taking 2" or so off the end.

Has anyone tried this? Heck, maybe even put a break on the end of it so I can actually see what I hit?

-Shorter & easier to carry.
-Lighter & easier to shoot.
-Stiffer, and therefore theoretically more accurate.
-Drop MV to a level that won't blow apart the bullets.

-Might eff it up.
-Lower MV for long range turbogoats.

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February 15, 2009, 10:36 PM
It's your choice but seems that chopping your gun would be progressing backwards.

Generally most hunters shy away from breaks due to the extra noise . Something else to add weight just where you don't want it.

Might want to research whatever ammo you are useing and getting some bullets constructed to match the velocites you are seeing .

February 15, 2009, 11:00 PM
Id opt for a new stock before chopping the barrel.

February 15, 2009, 11:07 PM
I like short barrels in some guns, but if I'm going to have a case the size of a WSM, I want it to work. working requires a 26" barrel or longer. I would say you are chopped already.

You could cut to a 20", but I think the balance shift will leave you disappointed accuracy wise.

February 16, 2009, 03:16 AM
No don't do it. work your loads through quickload and you will see the difference a few inches of barrell makes

February 16, 2009, 05:49 AM
I've had a 7mm mag and a 270 cut back from 26" to 22.5" and 24" respectively. Both heavy barrels

The balance improved for me, and the trajectory change wasn't that noticeable up to 300 yds.

I would think if you handload, you should be able to compensate for any loss.

You just have to think at what distance the majority of the shots will be taken. Mine are 99% of the time less than 200 yds, so it wasn't a big deal.

I recall speaking with a master gunsmith about barrel length several years ago. He said back in the day, they would cut barrels down 1/2 to 1 inch at a time. They would shoot them, chrono the round, look at accuracy, etc. I wish I could remember what length he said they saw the negative result- but I can't. But I seem to think it was shorter than 20 inches.

February 16, 2009, 09:10 PM
Seems to be a general consensus.. Kind of what I thought. That's what I thought too until I read these articles, and it got me thinking. I'd have a look at them and see if anyone's paradigm shifts. :)

(Ok, the break is probably a bad idea...)

I was thinking of going to 22", should I do it. This is probably a max 400yd gun for me considering how flat it shoots..

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