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#4449527 - 09/26/10 06:17 PM .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootout
Curtis1911 Offline

Registered: 09/22/10
Posts: 28
Ok guys, I am not a long range hunter (most of the game I've shot has been inside 350 yards), but do an extensive amount of long range metallic target shooting. These days you don't hear much about the old .270 win cartridge as a long range caliber for long range hunting for deer & pronghorn size game. Why is this? Here are some figures for the most typical loads in each caliber limited to a distance of 500 yards. This is taken from Hornady's ballistics calculator after inputting the data.

.270 Win - 130 gr Hornady SST @ 3100 fps - 200 yard sight in
.460 BC, SD .242
Trajectory - 300 yds (-6.1"), 400 yds (-17.8"), 500 yds (-36.0")
Wind Drift 10 mph - 300 yds (5.8"), 400 yds (10.7"), 500 yds (17.4")

6.5-284 Norma - 140 gr Berger VLD @2850 fps - 200 yrd sight in
.612 BC, SD apprx .287
Trajectory - 300 yds (-6.9"), 400 yds (-19.8"), 500 yds (-39.5")
Wind Drift 10 mph - 300 yds (4.7"), 400 yds (8.7"), 500 yds (14.0")

Of course, there are other factors that aren't considered here, but the old .270 seems to be a pretty decent contender. It's very flat shooting, good BC, high sectional density, tolerable recoil, readily available, etc. The 6.5-284 is also an amazing cartridge for many reasons (high BC, low wind drift, high SD for lots of penetration, etc). But out to 500 yards, these two seem pretty close in a lot of areas. I suppose the 6.5 may start to really shine beyond that distance, but am not sure.

In the end, my question is - why isn't the old .270 win talked about more in long range shooting discussions - Any thoughts? confused

Edited by Curtis1911 (09/26/10 10:13 PM)

RV 728 BP
#4449549 - 09/26/10 06:25 PM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootoff [Re: Curtis1911]
jwp475 Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Registered: 04/25/05
Posts: 19373
Loc: USA

Yea, the bullets for 270 do not have as high of BC as do the 6mms, 6.5's. 7mms, 30 cal, 338's

Long range begins at/or past 600 yards, the BC of .612 for the 6.5 will really start to walk away from the .462 BC of the 270 as the distance increases
Originally Posted By: Jeff_O
.they WAY over penetrate on deer...

#4449591 - 09/26/10 06:37 PM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootoff [Re: Curtis1911]
FlyboyFlem Offline
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 03/28/10
Posts: 9194
Loc: Nebraska
Curtis..comparing the tried and true 270 to other calibers has been an ongoing topic for many moons.I have never owned one personally but one of my long time hunting buddies was a 270 fanatic! His 270 was the reason I built my 264 Mag just to prove that there was something out there much much better?.. probably not much at average shooting ranges.We killed alot of deer and goats together over the years and at ranges out 350-400 yds he did just as well as I did with a much lighter gun and shorter barrel.IMO the 6.5's do have the edge but only at extreme ranges because of BC/SD .I think another reason is most everyone knows the 270 as a legend and just want something least I did.....FLEM
You better be afraid of a ghost!!

"Woody you were baptized in prop wash"..crossfireoops


#4449592 - 09/26/10 06:37 PM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootoff [Re: jwp475]
Curtis1911 Offline

Registered: 09/22/10
Posts: 28
So inside 500 or 600 yards, there isn't as much of a difference, but when you go beyond 600 yards, the 6.5mm bullets really have an advantage in a lot of ways. 600 yards is quite a long distance, so for most hunters, it seems that a .277 bullet would be adequate along with the 6.5mm bullets.

I guess my 500 yard minimum really isn't "long range" these days. It's not until you get out to 1000 yards that you are really shooting "long range."

#4450366 - 09/26/10 11:30 PM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootout [Re: Curtis1911]
aalf Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 12/02/07
Posts: 7463
Loc: S.W. Wis.
As said, long range begins around 600. Hell, for all practical purposes, a flat base runs neck and neck with a boatail out to 400 or so. The bigger BC's take charge after that. Run your charts to 1K and compare again.

#4450569 - 09/27/10 12:36 AM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootout [Re: aalf]
Curtis1911 Offline

Registered: 09/22/10
Posts: 28
aalf - your right, I used a conservative number. According to Nosler's 6th Edition reloading manual, the fastest they have a 140 gr bullet going is 2953 from a 26" barrel. So I'm about 100 fps slower in my comparison chart. With 2953 fps, I'm sure the performance with the 6.5 would be that much better.

The main differences I'm seeing is the wind drift at extremely long ranges. The 6.5 certainly has the distinct edge on the .270 but the trajectory between the two is almost the same. Here are the numbers at 1000 yards using the data I initially used above.

.270 Win @ 1000 yards
drop -274.2"
wind drift (10mph) 86.3"
557 ft lb energy

6.5-284 @ 1000 yard
drop -273.6"
wind drift (10mph) 66.3"
752 ft lb energy

I'm not trying to suggest the .270 win is "better" than the 6.5-284 - it's not. I'm just trying to compare the two based on factual numbers to see where the real advantages are. I intend on bulding a 6.5-284 (or .264 win mag) in the near future. Nonetheless, the old .270 win, seems to be quite good out to fairly long distances.

Edited by Curtis1911 (09/27/10 12:41 AM)

#4450627 - 09/27/10 12:58 AM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootout [Re: Curtis1911]
keith Online   content
Campfire Guide

Registered: 02/08/02
Posts: 4385
Curtis,when you shoot the barrel out of the 270, go to the 280. The std 162g HOrnady a Max has a bc of about .650.

Use the same brass, anneal it and neck it up.

I shot the 160's at 2900-2950 out of my 280, std nosler accuracy load.

#4453092 - 09/27/10 11:18 PM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootout [Re: Curtis1911]
roninflag Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 06/14/09
Posts: 814
Loc: az
i have shot the 139 scenar around 3080 out of my 6.5-284. your question is a good one though. you should ask on . i shoot a lot of F-class matches and have never shot against a .270 that i know of. i would like to though. roninflag

#4454286 - 09/28/10 05:42 AM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootout [Re: roninflag]
BobinNH Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 30518
JMHO but it seems to me that over the years,6mm, 6.5 and 7mm have gotten the bullet development attention for target work that the 270 has not.Also 6.5 and 7mm(.284 that is; the 270 Winchester IS a true 7mm) have traditionally been built and offered with longer bullets and faster twists to accomodate the heavier bullets for which they are noted.It would do no good for a manufacturer to build a 270 bullet with a BC over .600 if no one has the barrels to shoot it.

Given the military pedigree of the 6.5 and 7mm bore sizes,and the use of long heavy bullets, faster twists were standard in those bore sizes;the 270, OTOH,was conceieved solely as a hunting cartridge,and with the bullets of the day,its' 10 twist was fine.I personally think anyone building a 270 today would be well served building it with a faster twist.

Since it sits squarely in the middle between 6.5 and 7mm,(and we know those two calibers are very good) I see no reason why someone who put their mind to it, could not build a 270 bullet of great accuracy and high enough BC to at least stay in the ball park past 600 yards.

I think the cartridge is capable;it's likely more the bullets, barrels, and shooters attitudes that hold it back in the LR endeavors,far as I can tell.
You can't say very much on here without pissing at least SOMEBODY off-get used to it.

#4454308 - 09/28/10 06:30 AM Re: .270 Win vs. 6.5-284 shootout [Re: BobinNH]
Bauer Offline

Registered: 08/14/10
Posts: 154
Dan Lilja managed to use the sh!t out of the .270 and lowly 150gr ballistic tip for longe range hunting,before the practice became all of the rage it is today..

The .270 has never really been considered by the longe range benchrest shooters.For decades .30 cal was required by regulation and when that was amended,shooters moved right into the 7mm and of the founding fathers of the 6.5x.284 still competes nationally.The .270 has never had much following outside of hunting and america for that matter.

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