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.17 HMR or .22 Mag?

583 Views 19 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  Sportsman Doug
I am looking at buying a new rifle, but I can't decide I caliber. I am stepping up from a 10/22 with a Volquartsen Carbon Fiber barrel, CPC bolt, trigger work, VX-II scope, and a thumbhole stock. Would you guys recommend going with .17 HMR or .22 Mag for reasons of accuracy and varmint extermination? Thanks
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Here we go again...... you might wish to do a "search" on this subject; this has been covered, and uncovered, and covered, and uncovered, on this forum. It is a highly emotional subject and I believe it will remain so... ( BTW, in my opinion, go with the .17HMR )
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Lol, yeah, I read some of them, but there never seems to be a definitive answer. I know it is going to be one of those two calibers, and I don't really care about which is available in which type of rifle, because I already have a few picked out in each caliber. I just need to know if there is much of a difference between the two. So basically, which one will be able to kill varmint at a longer range, with more consistency? (I don't know if that specific question was answered, but I couldn't find it) Thanks, and sorry for the trouble.
 

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I have .22 mags and a .17HMR. If all of my shooting was 100 yards and under I would stay with the .22 mag. But, at further distances the .17HMR is a hoot. Based on the limited information you provided it is hard to say which would suit you best. The distance at which you expect to be shooting would be my first question. What you expect to shoot would be the 2nd question.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well my .22 does pretty good up to 100 yards, so I guess I will be looking for longer range. Probably shooting squirrels, prairie dogs, and the like. This actually brings up a few more questions for me. For just destroying stuff below 100 yards (such as watermelons, potatoes, and other "explosive" fruits), would the .22 mag or .17HMR be better? Also, you said to stick with the .22 mag below 100 yards, why is that? And finally, would a .17 HMR or .22 mag have enough impact to kill a coyote with a head shot at 100 yards and above? From the videos I have seen of exploding prairie dogs, it seems like they would. Thanks again.
 

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Just spend the money now and get it over with

Just buy a VQ rifle in 17HMR. :D :t Because of the lack of "Match" 22mag ammo, Volquartsen will not give an accuracy guarantee...17HMR they do.

I have a Standard in 22lr and it IS a "one hole" wonder gun.
 

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Why don't people just buy 223's instead. If you want long range hunting (I can understand that) or your thinking coyotes why not a centrefire?
You obviously take the sport seriously judging by your current rifle and the fine to 100yd remark so bridging the gap to reloading will give you .22mag and 17HMR performance and more.
The .22mag and 17hmr are both fine rounds but trying to argue killing power vs trajectory is splitting hairs a bit fine when there are other options.
Will have to appoligise in advance incase I have come across a law unbeknown to me in Australia that forces the issue.
regards
robe
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Cost, basically. If I could find a .223 with quick reload, either auto, lever action (if there is even a .223 like this), or bolt action with a high-cap mag that does not cost that much, then I would consider it. The problem is, all the .223s are more expensive than .22 mag or .17HMR, but I would really like the killing power and trajectory of a .223
 

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Uncle Caleetro said:
Cost, basically
Fine thats a good enough reason. I bought a remington 504 that cost more than the tikka and ruger centrefire rifles here in Aus.
Well back to .22mag vs 17HMR IMO if you want the heavier hitter go 22Mag. Whereas if shooting small targets at the longest ranges 17HMR will be better.
enjoy.
 

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I have humanely killed groundhogs out to 130 yds and would feel comfortable making humane kills on groundhogs to 150 yds with my 22 mag. The absolute max I would feel comfortable shooting a coyote with my 22 mag would be 100-120 yds with proper bullet/ammo selection and shot placement.

I have talked to 17 HMR owners at the range and follow threads on other rimfire and varmint hunting Forums and their experience has been that they CAN NOT hold (humanely kill) groundhogs past 150 yds even with good shot placement, and that they needed to use the heavier 20 gr offering past 100 yds. At that distance,there is no difference (advantage) of the 17 HMR compaired to the 22 Mag.

That being said, what is the advantage of the HMR if you can't make humane kills past the effective humane kill range of the 22 magnum on larger varmints and predators?

I agree that the HMR is very accurate and flat shooting. My issue with the HMR is the ability to make humane kills of large varmints and predators due to a lack of proper bullet penetration.

I personnally would not choose the 17 HMR to "do the job" beyond the 150 yd range of my 22 mag because of what I mentioned above. A good choice would be a centerfire caliber in either 22 Hornet, 223, or 22-250.

My preference would be a dual purpose varmint/whitetail caliber. That would be the 25-06. Currently I do not have the funds to make this happen, but perhaps some day.

The only 2 rifles I have that I use for varmints are my 22 mag and my 30-06. I am currently thinking about handloading 110 gr V-Max, 125 gr TNT or 125 gr Ballistic tip ammo for my 30-06 for coyotes. Not sure yet what I'll do. I'm kinda sceptical about the accuracy of the 125 gr and 110 gr bullets due to limited bearing surface. Anyone have experience with these bullets in 30-06?
 

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Uncle,
Inexpensive .223??? If you like the feel of your 10/22 then how about a Ruger Mini14. Large capacity Mag. - sort of spendy but not too bad, how about an AR. Bolt gun - not a lot of rounds but available in a detachable mag. and the price is good. Savage I hear the new trigger is outstanding out of the box.
Bill
 

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Actually, the 17hmr has more energy than the 22mag after 150 yards. Go to this site http://www.chuckhawks.com/compared_17HMR_22WMR.htm and scroll down to energy and it shows it. At 150 yards a 30gr. 22 mag bullet has 80 ft/lbs of energy while the 17hmr 17gr. bullet has 99ft/lbs. Just trying to set the facts straight. Not trying to start an argument. If I were you, I would go with the 17hmr. It's more accurate and flatter shooting for shots over 100 yards. Later
 

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Sportsman Doug said:
The only 2 rifles I have that I use for varmints are my 22 mag and my 30-06. I am currently thinking about handloading 110 gr V-Max, 125 gr TNT or 125 gr Ballistic tip ammo for my 30-06 for coyotes. Not sure yet what I'll do. I'm kinda sceptical about the accuracy of the 125 gr and 110 gr bullets due to limited bearing surface. Anyone have experience with these bullets in 30-06?
You are right, the little 30 cal bullets won't stabalize. You'll never get a good pattern in any 30-06 with 110 grain. Even the 125's are marginal.

Remeber the Accelerator bullets from remington. It has a 22 cal with a sabot chambered for 30-06. This might be the ticket, can't hurt to try but not great accuracy in some rifles either.
Have you put any thought into a .243 rem.?

You can push light 55 grain bullets to 4000 feet/sec for prairie dogs and coyotes. Plenty of lethality there, or get a 90-100 grain for deer hunting.
Just a suggestion. I built a custom .243 rem under $300. Ask me how. :t :t
 

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Generally either will do, critter killing, depends on the critter and the range. If you are going to go up to coyote size i would recommend more like a .223. I would say anything over the size of a groundhog is candidate for a centerfire. Maybe asking what your looking for by way of critter hunting can be asked and answered in the hunting section. When you get .22 mag vs. .17 hmr you will get a controversy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Where I live, I can't use centerfire for anything over coyote, so I don't need to be concerned about deer. The biggest thing is that I want an accurate rifle with some more punch than a .22LR, but I still what to be able to just shoot targets with it without going broke. I guess I will just see what my options are for .223, this seems to be the most appealing. Thanks for all the help guys. :t
 

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For the rimfire, I would go with the 22 Mag. I like the 17, don't get me wrong but I just think the 22 would do better.

As for an accurate .223 try an NEF/H&R Handi Rifle. I know it doesn't have the great mag capacity being a single shot, but people say they are accurate. I wouldn't got with the Mini 14 for shots over 100 yards, they aren't that accurate, I own one. If you want "high" capacity bolt action, there is a company that is making 10 round detachible mags for the Remington 700, Cabelas offers these. That might be something to look into. Just trying to help and think outside the box.

Aaron

p.s. The Handi should cost about as much as a good Marlin 22 Mag bolt, not to mention you can get different barrels for it.
 

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22rimfan said:
Aaron
p.s. The Handi should cost about as much as a good Marlin 22 Mag bolt, not to mention you can get different barrels for it.
Good advice. Semi Auto centerfires are not known for their accuracy when in the cheaper options. The Handi rifle is also quite an impressive little walk about rifle. You better factor in reloading and the costs to set up if you are serious about the centerfire vs rimfire equation.
You will also need a good scope to make the most of the extra 100m range the 223 can offer.
But hey it all costs money just some things are more fun than others.

Also I enjoy reloading, its a nice addition to role your own and it does save money while offering more versatility and greater accuracy in your rifles.
 

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Colorado Osprey said:
Have you put any thought into a .243 rem.?

You can push light 55 grain bullets to 4000 feet/sec for prairie dogs and coyotes. Plenty of lethality there, or get a 90-100 grain for deer hunting.
Just a suggestion. I built a custom .243 rem under $300. Ask me how. :t :t
My wife has a Rem 700 in .243 Win with open sights. I've been trying to get her to let me put a good scope on it. She says "don't even think about it. It shoots fine just the way it is."
 
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