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.270 Winchester, Does it Need 24 inches?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Sulaco, Feb 10, 2011.

  1. Sulaco

    Sulaco Well-Known Member

    I'm in the market for a .270 for hunting Whitetail here in SC. I am reading a lot of recommendations that a 24" barrel is a minimum for this caliber. Is this more load specific and dealing with things like pet loads somebody is working up? Or would the extra 2 inches make any difference with factory ammo too? I don't reload and have had good success with Hornady ammo in the past.

    If I can get away with a 22" barrel, I am looking hard at Tikka's. If I need to stick with a 24" barrel, Remington is the only (affordable) game in town from what I can tell.

  2. natman

    natman Well-Known Member

    A 270 does not need a 24" barrel. A 257 Weatherby might. You'll be fine with a 22" barrel.
  3. jakk280rem

    jakk280rem Well-Known Member

    i will be conservative and say that that the 270 win fired from a 22" or less barrel has taken game animals numbering in the mere millions since its introduction.

    it does have the case capacity to make use of the extra 2 or more inches, but the deer won't know the difference in velocities. it will simply lie down and be still.

    can the cartridge make use of the extra barrel length? yes. do you need it to hunt game? no.
  4. LANDMAN4389

    LANDMAN4389 Well-Known Member

    No need for a 24" barrel.
  5. saturno_v

    saturno_v Well-Known Member

    By the way, a Weatherby Vanguard is very inexpensive (and an excellent rifle I should add) and it comes with a 24" pipe in 270 Win.
  6. Picher

    Picher Well-Known Member

    If you want a 22" barrel, you should think about getting a .30-06 instead. About the .270 Win's only advantage over a .30-06 is velocity, so if you cut off 150-200 fps, by going to a 22" barrel, why get one?

    The .30-06 has so many other advantages in being able to use heavier bullets and making a little bigger hole in whatever you shoot.
  7. Sulaco

    Sulaco Well-Known Member

    Good info, thanks!
  8. SwampWolf

    SwampWolf Well-Known Member

    Well, a 30" long barrel might be even better if the goal is to milk every foot per second out of a given cartridge but common sense and pragmatism have to be addressed when deciding on a "proper" length for a barrel on a hunting rifle. I agree with natman in that "you'll be fine with a 22" barrel" but I also think Picher's thoughts have merit. I have a ,257 Weatherby Magnum chambered in a rifle with a 24" barrel. I'm ok with that length but, if I had my druthers, I'd be happier with a 26" barrel. Likewise, though I think a 22" barrel will work just fine in a .270 rifle, I like the idea of having a 24" barrel with this cartridge. But maybe jakk280rem said it best when he opined:

  9. Geno

    Geno Well-Known Member

    I'll take issue here. No, you do not need a 24" barrel. In fact, the Encore pistol chambered in .270 Win still can burp out a projectile, but at a significantly reduced velocity due it its 15" barrel.

    What you should get is a 26" barrel if you want the .270 Win to fulfill all that it was designed to do. The same is said for the .25-06 Rem, and the 7mm and 300 magnums. That was how the Winchesters in .270 Win were built in the good ol' days...long, heavy 26" tubes. That added length netted greater velocity, and that velocity is what was touted as setting the .270 Win apart from the .30-06 Sprg.

    I personally would not touch any new .270 Win rifle with a barrel of less than 24". By the way, good luck finding any modern rifle in .270 Win with 26" barrels. :( Of course, you go with an Encore Pro Hunter, which has a 28" barrel. Now that's called cookin' with gas...28" of steel. :cool:

  10. biggameballs

    biggameballs Well-Known Member

    Have have a winchester M70 featherweight in 270 and it has a 22" barrel. It kills deer very dead. Longer barrels suck in the field, get the 22".
  11. saturno_v

    saturno_v Well-Known Member

    I have to "philosophically" agree with you...I do not like rifles chambered for any high intensity cartridge (as a matter of fact, even if the 270 Winchester and the 30-06 Springfield aren't called "magnum", they actually are) with a barrel length less than 24".....I "settled" on a 22" pipe for my Remington 740 and 7600 only because it was the only choice for that kind of action (auto and pump) but my bolt 30-06 has a 24" barrel.

    Luckily enough, you can still buy a Weatherby Vanguard or a Remington SPS in the same price ballpark of a Savage or a Tikka but with 24" pipes for standard calibers.
  12. jmr40

    jmr40 Well-Known Member

    You won't lose anywhere near 150 fps with a 22" barrel compared to 24". You would lose somewhere around 50-60 fps max, and most likely less.

    I like 22" on all non magnum calibers, but get whatever feels best to you. Some rifles come standard with 24", some 22". Buy the gun that you like best and forget about any velocity you may lose.
  13. roklok

    roklok Well-Known Member

    No, the .270 does just fine with a 22 inch barrel. Last August I shot a Dall ram with my .270 Model 700 at a laser ranged 584 yards. I am getting 3200 FPS with 130 grain SSTs out of the 22 inch. Bullet completely penetrated through the shoulders, ram dropped on the spot. Sure, two more inches will gain a bit in velocity, but dont let anyone tell you that 22 inches is too short.
  14. NCsmitty

    NCsmitty Well-Known Member

    It doesn't hurt, but having said that, my own Remington barrel in 270 on a 98 Mauser has a 22" length, though. It's probably down around 60fps from a 24".

  15. JASmith

    JASmith Well-Known Member

    Yes, you'll lose about 50 ft/sec by going to a 22" barrel. You can check this yourself by going to http://shootersnotes.com/calculator/velocity-estimator/.

    This ~50 ft/sec difference translates to about 0.1 mil at 500 yards when sighted in at 200 yards. You can get your own trajectory figures at http://www.jbmballistics.com/ballistics/calculators/calculators.shtml.

    You'll be hard-pressed to notice the difference since it is likely well inside one's ability to group. Further, your target won't notice the 2% loss in velocity!

  16. supercalvin56

    supercalvin56 Well-Known Member

    I'd give up 50 fps in exchange for 1/12-2 lbs. in a hunting rifle every time. My pre-64 featherweight model 70 with 22" easily shoots 3050 fps and under 1 inch groups with 130 grain bullets. I don't need to do any better than that.
  17. SwampWolf

    SwampWolf Well-Known Member

    How much does two inches of barrel weigh?
  18. supercalvin56

    supercalvin56 Well-Known Member

    Of course, it is not just the 2" of barrel weight. When rifle makers go from the 22" to the 24" or greater they often add extra weight in barrel contour, stock weight, recoil pad and so on. The model 70 Featherweight is 1 to 1 1/2 lbs. lighter than the standard weight Model 70 with 24" or longer barrel.
  19. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    Deer in SC at ranges likely inside of 300 yards? For all that I definitely like long barrels for max velocity, 300 yards isn't far enough out to worry about that. A couple of hundred feet per second slower muzzle velocity won't mean a thing to Bambi.

    130-grain bullet, two inches high at 100 is close to dead on at 200 and about six inches low at 300. Plenty good. Been working for decades. :)
  20. jmr40

    jmr40 Well-Known Member

    Well, I agree that he would never miss 200 fps, but he'd have to cut his barrel to around 18" to see that much difference.

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