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17 HMR Bullet Performance

1216 Views 13 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  bzzrd feeder
Just wondering what type of game and varmints you hunt with your hmr and what kind of performance you get with the various bullets(V-Max, TNT, XTP, ect.) Do you use different bullets for different ranges? What is the max range for one shot kills on various game at various ranges? Do the bullets exit or not and at what ranges?

Not trying to start a war here. There's a wealth of knowledge on this forum and I'm just trying to tap into it. We don't all get to hunt the same type of game and we all have our own opinions as to what works best in different situations.
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Haven't shot anything with the XTP or Gamepoint yet, but the TNT HP will exit a california ground squirrel at 158yds, closer shots around 100-125yds the Vmax does also.
 

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for my use (gopher shooting) the vmax is the only bullet i use. mass damage at closer ranges and plenty of penitration at longer ranges. the bullet still passed though but its just fragments at the closer ranges and farther out say 75+ it doesnt expand much but still enough to drop a gopher easy and cause enough damge so it doesnt even kick. it will split the gopher open and posslibly in two pieces. the tnts dont expand in the small animals such as gophers it passes through and doesnt do any damage exsept for the .17 holes. the 20gr xpt and gampoint just mushroom and are designed for larger game.

my farhtest kill to date is 155 yards, the gopher was facing away from me and it went in high on his behind and out on on his sholder, he didnt even flinch.
 

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I don't really hunt, it's more like taking targets of opportunity in getting rid of varmints around my 8 acre "estate". Woodchuck, muskrat, crow, starlings, feral cats, snapping turtle, geese. I 99.9% target shoot and have found any 17gr v-max are more accurate out of my gun than any of the others so I use them exclusively. The end result is dead - period. The v-max really makes the feathers fly on starlings and crows. The exit wounds on the smaller starlings, my favorite, pretty much look like hamburger, decapitated about a dozen if ya hit them in the right spot and a few looked like they were field dressed when hit from behind. The muskrats had no exit wounds as the bullets must have went down lengthwise down into the body. Hit a woodchuck in the head and they lose the back of their skulls. The Canadian honkers I don't kill. I just need them to vacate my pond so they don't crap all over the place and chasing them off does no good. A well placed round and they lose a few tail feathers and they don't come back. Got a turkey last year, an 85 yard neck shot. The bullet just shattered the verebrae, just some skin holding it's head on. I actually shot a fly on one of my targets :D . A wing and a couple of legs around the edges of the bullt hole was all that was left. Sorry I can't help you on the hollow points - I just don't use them.
 

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17 Gr. V-MAX @ 2,700 ft/per/sec MV

I shot about 1,500 prairie dogs (PD) with the 17 HMR last year. Shots were about between 25 and 180 Yds. At 180 Yds the bullet will make small holes going in and out on a lung shot. The PDs will run a bit with a side lung shot at 180 Yds. but on a straight forward or away shot they slump down with little movement. The 17 Gr. bullet has about 80 ft/lb of energy at 180 Yds which is close to a 22 LR HP round at 100 Yds and the 17 HM2 round at 120 Yds. Between 25 and 100 Yds the 17 HMR has for more tissue damage on PDs than a 22 LR HP. As could be expected the tissue damage is reduced as the bullet slows down. Sofar this year I,m using the 17 HM2 rifle with the V-MAX 17 Gr. bullets ( MV ft/per/sec 2,050 ) for shots under 80 Yds on PD pups.. I have only used the Hornady 17 Gr. ammo in my rifles.
 

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I have shot full unopened cans of soda with the .17 hmr. At 100 yards the HMR round blows the can wide open with some pieces flying off. At ten yard the can is blown to pieces.

I dont know if this is what you want,but here it is anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the replys. So far all I've hunted with the hmr has been squirrels. Shots have been fairly close, 20 to 50 yards. Longest about 60 yards. The Hornady V-Max really does a job on them. Mostly head shots but did punch a few through the ribs. I was surprised to see only a dime size exit hole with the rib shots. I thought it would be more massive a wound. When we cleaned them though, the heart and lungs were just jelly. Very destructive. My son shot a red fox broadside through the lungs with a CCI TNT at about 50 yards. The fox went straight down but wasn't dead and had to be shot again. It had an exit hole about the size of a nichel. I'm anxious to try the TNT and XTP on groundhogs this summer. I think they may be a little better than the V-Max.
Have any of you recovered any bullets from game you've shot?
I know what you mean Mr Gap about shooting unopened soda cans. My grandson loves watching them explode. So do I! :)
 

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I've only shot a squirrel with mine. I was using the Federal TNT round. I was aiming at the neck and right before I shot the thing turned and I got a raking body shot. The bullet went in right above the left shoulder and came out above the right rear leg. Small hole going in, hole about as big around as one of the G-2 ink pens, all I had to judge by, going out. Some lung tissue, stomach, large and small intestines were removed and looked like hamburger. So far other than paper, soda cans, and water bottles that's the only thing I have shot. Hopefully I will be able to get out this fall and see how she really does.
Aaron
 

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Most of the groundhogs I've taken were under 100yds. and the bullets passed through (head shots) hollow point and V-max alike. Took a turkey this spring using the 20gr. XTP at about 30yds. and it passed through also, though there was not as much damage as a V-max would have done. The 20gr. did an excellent job; better than I expected. :)
 

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I have shot several (approx 8) crows with the 17gn H load. Very impressed with the results. I have shot crows with both 22lr & 22mag and believe the .17 beats them hands down. Average distance was about 100yards.
 

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I haven't hunted that much with mine, so I can't tell you exactly what they will do to an animal first hand. I have read quite a bit on the net though and have a fair idea what others are seeing.

I can tell you the differences in the bullets if you want to know them though.

The V-max is the most explosive and meant for small varmints like gofers and the such. It's very distructive! If you want to eat what you shoot you better aim for the head. The down side is because it is so explosive and fragments so easy the penitration is not ideal for larger animals and longer distances. It can be done, the percentages just drop a little. Like large woodchucks at beyond 100 yards may not give you perfect results every time. But smaller softer animals will flat out be messed up!

The hollow point or TNT's fragment as well, but probably penitrate a bit better and are a bit less explosive most likely. They still do plenty of damage though and have the same weight, so the energy levels will be the same.

Because of the demand they came out with a new offering of a 20 grn XTP that expands like a Large Game bullet. This offers slighty more down range energy and more penitration, with less explosive results. Probably more popular for larger stuff like woodchucks and Coyote. Surprisingly the muzzle velocity didn't drop that much so they still shoot pretty flat. I haven't tried any of them yet myself.

I prefer the Vmax bullets myself. I mostly plink and do pest control now and then. I want the highly frangible bullet for reduced ricochet and explosive results on smaller animals. I don't intend to eat anything I shoot with it so the damage doesn't bother me.

Does that help any?

Paul
 

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I have used the v-max and the 20 grn. xtp on ground hogs. Of the dozens of ground hogs that I have shot with the v-max, I don't ever recall an exit wound.
They just die,,,,,,,,instantly.
The XTP's had the same result but they did penetrate all the way through with a small exit hole, but it was barely noticeable.
I use v-max on everything now. Crows and grackles turn into instant feather dusters. Poof! You can drop a tennis ball into the hole. Chipmunks are a problem because they dig holes into sideing and cause major roof damage. They turn into striped hamburger. The cats love it!
 

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I've shot over 8000 Ground Squirrels with the HMR. Mainly w/the V-Max Tried the other bullets but with the pest I'm shooting the V-max shines, both for accuracy and knockdown-quiver factor. Bullet exits are very dependent on range and angle of entry, but simply put a head-neck shot =no head, a side shot to the ribcage or frontal [email protected] <100 yds. =large exit hole (golf ball size at least), and frontal prone or Tex. Heart shot normally no exit and instant kill. Ranges are normally 50-150yds. I have shot them well over 200 yds. Laser Ranged, No Wind and it took a good spotter and three shots w/a VQ and 18X. I don't do that far normally but I ran out of ammo for my 17 Rem. The Cartridge never stops amazing me how devastating that little 17gr bullet is, I hope you have fun with yours. I have very little experience with other game except for a few Jacks, and they aren't much of challenge. Dale
 
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