Jump to content
UKV - The Place for Precision Rifle Enthusiasts
Sign in to follow this  
David Hancock

.17 Hornet . . .204, or 223 ??

Recommended Posts

I would be interested if anyone has shot the 17 Hornet. Thoughts??

 

(I know you're going to say 20Tac, but I don't reload currently)

 

Thanks, David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would be interested if anyone has shot the 17 Hornet. Thoughts??

 

(I know you're going to say 20Tac, but I don't reload currently)

 

Thanks, David

The 17 H is 'new' ,of course-except for earlier wildcats .It's a niche cartridge-for what?I have had a Hornet,and still have 17rem and 222 rem (etc).The 17 hornet cannot be in the 17/222/223/20 league,but what it has going for it ,is that it will moderate a little quieter,and it will be adequate at considerably reduced ranges for small vermin.Those might be relevant to you.I doubt that it will be economical,if you don't reload compared, to the others.The hornet was economical-but you got what you paid for in restricted ( but perhaps enough) performance. Again,maybe that will not matter-you might not shoot it that much.So,it's an adequate shorter range round,with a couple of possible advantages.It will stretch a bit further than the 17 HMRF rimfire,and might be quieter than the 224s.It might well be the right tool for some limited applications..Oh,add in near zero recoil-you will see bullet impact,no scope jump etc,but that is true of the 17 rem too....

Enjoy, within it's effective envelope!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would be interested if anyone has shot the 17 Hornet. Thoughts??

 

(I know you're going to say 20Tac, but I don't reload currently)

 

Thanks, David

Very tasty,but....

The Hornady 17 Hornet data is very interesting,and justly tempting...

we have 20g Vmax at 3650,and 'trajectory like 55g 223'.OK,but there isn't any wind drift claims....AND energy will not lower...no free lunch.

For comparison,the 17Rem with 20g is good for about 4250,and the 17Fireball 20 g about 4000.

So how does the 17 Hornet get manage it?Hornady use 'superformance' powder-and quote some advantages,in addition to increased velocity-namely,less temperature sensitivity and barrel length losses.I couldn't see any mention of barrel life,but none of these are likely to be big deals.Factory ammo price was 'competitive' with their other factory ammo in this bracket,though not vastly so,of course.

For reloaders,I imagine 'superformance' powder will be available,and,if so, it might occur to you to wonder what it might do in ,say,a 223.Hornady have done it-the 55g 223 becomes equivalent to a 'conventional 22/250' in trajectory terms.(and so on- there isn't any data I could see on what 'superformance' powder will do in the other 17s-of course not,H isn't selling those-but we might expect a couple of hundred fps increase-so add that to all the non 17H data given above.It might well be a good thing all round!But lets compare like with like.

What do we 'need'-the hotter 17s might be a bit too fast at top loading-'superformance' or not-and if so the 17 Hornet is a well worth while addition,they all have way enough energy for their intended purpose,after all.Trajectory /drift matter of course-but you need to judge range and wind quite accurately,and a few inches-that's all there is,between these cartridges at realistic ranges-won't transform that.Get it right and 12 clicks are as easy as 8 if that's what the ballistics tell you.

OK they are all fine performers-as ever,within their design envelope.and you can go too fast (light 17 bullets pushed too fast have been known to spin apart in flight!)

You pays your money-quite similar-and you makes your choice-quite similar-but I wish this little whizzer well!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just arrived home to my "order report" from Edgars and a 17H rifle and ammo are mentioned so hopefully not a million miles away from getting it on test. Im really looking forward to it and 100 rounds of ammo might get used very quickly if it arrives before or during the harvest in my world of 36" arable crop.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

According to the backorder form they sent, im getting a walking varminter model 25 on test with the synthetic stock.. I shot the laminate stocked version back in april at the open day which Brown Dog shot too so this will likely be a little lighter weight.

 

I have been waiting a few months for it so im quite excited about testing what looks to be an interesting calibre?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have used a 17AH for a couple of years, the laminated CZ527 built for the founder of this site 6PPC in 2007. 17HH is based on 17AH.

 

As a nice light vermin rifle it is ideal to carry on a trap round, winged vermin at 80-150 yards are its main diet using 20gr Vmax and Bergers. Its a nice cartridge to use but I would prefer to have a bigger caliber for a rifle that is used for mainly fox. Yes I have taken foxes with the 17AH out to about 150 yards ( not many though) and it does put them down but not with the authority of 20s. 22s, 6mm's etc. Wind is also something that needs more than the usual consideration at longer distances. I drive mine at about 3500 using N120, thats plenty fast enough. Accuracy is perfectly acceptable, about moa using a bipod, it is also very sweet to shoot and with a small mod on the end pretty quiet.

 

Winds above about 15mph I usually take a bigger caliber.

 

So as part of a wider range of rifles in a cabinate then yes there is a place for it, it should take a lot of sales from 17HMR but as a stand alone centerfire then go 20 or 22.

 

A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have used a 17AH for a couple of years, the laminated CZ527 built for the founder of this site 6PPC in 2007. 17HH is based on 17AH.

 

As a nice light vermin rifle it is ideal to carry on a trap round, winged vermin at 80-150 yards are its main diet using 20gr Vmax and Bergers. Its a nice cartridge to use but I would prefer to have a bigger caliber for a rifle that is used for mainly fox. Yes I have taken foxes with the 17AH out to about 150 yards ( not many though) and it does put them down but not with the authority of 20s. 22s, 6mm's etc. Wind is also something that needs more than the usual consideration at longer distances. I drive mine at about 3500 using N120, thats plenty fast enough. Accuracy is perfectly acceptable, about moa using a bipod, it is also very sweet to shoot and with a small mod on the end pretty quiet.

 

Winds above about 15mph I usually take a bigger caliber.

 

So as part of a wider range of rifles in a cabinate then yes there is a place for it, it should take a lot of sales from 17HMR but as a stand alone centerfire then go 20 or 22.

 

A

Sage advice! I was watching Bolt and Blake,and it seems obvious that it's pretty well impossible to up your velocity when you are already at max(Blake),but somewhat easier to ease off a bit,from a higher max velocity(Bolt). I wonder if the same might be true of cartridges?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

David,

 

I think even basic reloading will open up your possibilities.

 

What do you actually want to do with it or expect from this cartridge - this will determine what you buy.

 

I've owned an 22K hornet and a 20tac (when it first came out) both are very nice rounds, the K hornet is streets ahead of the standard black powder design.

 

Yes the 17H is new and 'neat' but is it any better than existing rounds? 222 always looked a good cartridge for moderate fox etc. Low recoil and accurate. 20tac or probably 20 practical's great, nil recoil and easy to load (and to me a 20 cal bullets about a small as I'd like to handle for reloading).

 

As I said - what do you want it to do for you? - it's only a tool at the end of the day :D

 

Terry

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you hit the nail on the head with your post here, there is very little difference in performance with the calibers mentioned, IMHO its more down to what the individual likes the look of more than what does he want to do with the rifle. And whats wrong with that ????

 

Nothing, its a hobby to me.

More or less agree-with the explicit proviso that it's not a hobby to your quarry,and there is as ever a moral imperative here,which actually coincides with the practical-to be as near to 100% effective,safely,as you can!The 17HH is a quite superior round to the standard hornet,esp wrt trajectory,and is in a quite differnt league to the 17HRFM,having 1000 fps superiority,which takes it at least close to the 223/20/222/faster 17s group,which have a margin above adequate energy delivery at viable/sensible ranges-for UK vermin-as existing experience shows,so we can expect the 17HH to join that general performance group on merit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

More or less agree-with the explicit proviso that it's not a hobby to your quarry,and there is as ever a moral imperative here,which actually coincides with the practical-to be as near to 100% effective,safely,as you can!The 17HH is a quite superior round to the standard hornet,esp wrt trajectory,and is in a quite differnt league to the 17HRFM,having 1000 fps superiority,which takes it at least close to the 223/20/222/faster 17s group,which have a margin above adequate energy delivery at viable/sensible ranges-for UK vermin-as existing experience shows,so we can expect the 17HH to join that general performance group on merit.

 

 

None the less the 17 Hornet in whatever guise is a short range cartridge, ie 150 yards is a long way for it. Yes velocity and trajectory are very close to 222/223 but energy is quite a bit down. Thats why I suggest as a sole centerfire 20s and 22s are a better all round bet. I watched a fox this morning at about 300 yards through the Hornets scope from one of my pens, shame I had the Hornet and not a bigger caliber otherwise it would have had an unpleasant surprise, I nearly took a 6mm as well, not happy.

 

A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

.... I suggest as a sole centerfire 20s and 22s are a better all round bet. ......A

 

I agree with Alycidon. My field shooting has always been based on my huge interest in traditional varmint hunting. Customarily, .22 centrefires were used, and that's expanded usefully in recent decades with the growth of interest in other small-cased rounds in .17 and .204 and a few others.

But I and others discriminate between these in terms of useful range, and application: for example, my sole centrefire currently is a 20Tac, and though I wrote here recently about clean kills on two groundhogs at 570 yards, I don't class 20Tac as a 600-yard cartridge. In my own classification, it's a sort of 200-500 (max) yard cartridge, especially since my rifle is a lightweight sporter, a walkaround varminter, not a trad heavy-barrel job.

I have two further rifles on my list for when I have the cash, the first being something in .17. I'll probably go for Fireball, though the new .17VHA is intriguing. I wouldn't personally go for anything based on the Hornet case - too antiquated and that rim is a complicating factor re headspacing. When Neil McKillop was building my 20Tac we talked about Fireball, a round he likes and has used: Neil regards it as a 250 yard max round, and I'd think that's spot on. That's exactly what i'd want a Fireball to do - fitted with a mod (which i don't normally like) it would be great on several pieces of ground for rabbit control at typical distances of 50-250 yards.

I'd also like something with a bit more poke than 20Tac for long range shooting, say (my rifle skills permitting...) out to 600 - 700 yards or even further. I really think this requires a bigger heavier high-BC bullet such as the 75gr A-Max, though I'd like to be able to shoot the 53gr V-Max too. I'm attracted to 22-250 AI, but 22BR is more efficient and inherently even more accurate.

So I agree, if just one varminting rifle is used, something in .204 or .224 is best; but it's horses for courses, and the various small calibres should be selected very carefully according to what shooting one has in mind.

Tony

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Alycidon. My field shooting has always been based on my huge interest in traditional varmint hunting. Customarily, .22 centrefires were used, and that's expanded usefully in recent decades with the growth of interest in other small-cased rounds in .17 and .204 and a few others.

But I and others discriminate between these in terms of useful range, and application: for example, my sole centrefire currently is a 20Tac, and though I wrote here recently about clean kills on two groundhogs at 570 yards, I don't class 20Tac as a 600-yard cartridge. In my own classification, it's a sort of 200-500 (max) yard cartridge, especially since my rifle is a lightweight sporter, a walkaround varminter, not a trad heavy-barrel job.

I have two further rifles on my list for when I have the cash, the first being something in .17. I'll probably go for Fireball, though the new .17VHA is intriguing. I wouldn't personally go for anything based on the Hornet case - too antiquated and that rim is a complicating factor re headspacing. When Neil McKillop was building my 20Tac we talked about Fireball, a round he likes and has used: Neil regards it as a 250 yard max round, and I'd think that's spot on. That's exactly what i'd want a Fireball to do - fitted with a mod (which i don't normally like) it would be great on several pieces of ground for rabbit control at typical distances of 50-250 yards.

I'd also like something with a bit more poke than 20Tac for long range shooting, say (my rifle skills permitting...) out to 600 - 700 yards or even further. I really think this requires a bigger heavier high-BC bullet such as the 75gr A-Max, though I'd like to be able to shoot the 53gr V-Max too. I'm attracted to 22-250 AI, but 22BR is more efficient and inherently even more accurate.

So I agree, if just one varminting rifle is used, something in .204 or .224 is best; but it's horses for courses, and the various small calibres should be selected very carefully according to what shooting one has in mind.

Tony

OK-plenty sense being spoken here at moderate ranges (300 y) and maybe a bit more.Who shoots at 600+ and need to be accurate almost every shot? F class? Correct-and there we are into WSMs or 7mm shehanes or similar (BC are .5 +).When tried,properly,the 223 is just not very competitive,shall we say: 308 isn't too bad. 1000 yards even more so.And remember this is with top equipment,experienced shooters,quite good conditions.224 A max,and the 50+gr bullets , etc have a good place in our armoury,but trying to shoot small vermin about 700 yards away isn't one of them.It's plenty tough with the best of everything,no need to reinvent the problems of the 'hornet at 350 yards''-ie it misses way, way too often!It is educational to try,with eg 4 inch gongs as the target,700 or so yards away.It is possible,of courrse.Lots of bang, rather less clang!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

'd also like something with a bit more poke than 20Tac for long range shooting, say (my rifle skills permitting...) out to 600 - 700 yards or even further. I really think this requires a bigger heavier high-BC bullet such as the 75gr A-Max, though I'd like to be able to shoot the 53gr V-Max too. I'm attracted to 22-250 AI, but 22BR is more efficient and inherently even more accurate.

So I agree, if just one varminting rifle is used, something in .204 or .224 is best; but it's horses for courses, and the various small calibres should be selected very carefully according to what shooting one has in mind.

Tony

 

 

Well it depends on what you want to do and what your FEO will let you do with any given caliber. The US sites say 20BR and 50gr Bergers will do all that, I built one on that basis, never pushed it beyond 300 yards but it would be one handy round at 600 yards. A friend who used to post here switched his 22.250AI to 22BR, now he has a tool that shoots (.1s at Minsterly recently) and he gets to see the impacts. He has so far shot 7 for 7 foxes on my patch with it. I have been there with 22.250 and 22.250AI, dont go there, lots of recoil, barrel lift, no impact seen unless rifle is very heavy.

 

There are also some lovely 6mm and 6.5mm that are probably better suited over 500 yards than either of the BRs.

 

A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

...There are also some lovely 6mm and 6.5mm that are probably better suited over 500 yards than either of the BRs.

 

A

 

Absolutely, A, but to the best of my knowledge most issuing authorities will not grant bigger than .224" rounds purely for varmint hunting (i.e. "pest control" etc etc), and you have to go through the rigmarole of applying for a 6mm or bigger rifle nominally for deer hunting, with foxes/vermin as secondary use. That means having to get a permission where you can (at least in theory) shoot deer. I find all that stuff extremely irritating. Anyway, as a varmint hunting traditionalist I just think 6mm and similar bullets are a bit on the hefty side for zapping small-ish varmints: I like .22 and smaller cases, find them rewarding and fun. I've owned fewer than a dozen rifles from .20Tac to 22-250, never more than two at the same time, and liked them all. What you say about 22-250 is fair comment but I've owned four of those at different times and I like this round a lot; however, I'll never have another bog-standard factory 22-250 since my custom 20Tac out-shoots it. A custom 22-250 AI would be a different matter, still an attractive idea - though on balance 22BR makes more sense. One of these shooting the 75gr A-Max doesn't give up much to 6mm/6.5mm unless one sticks much bigger bullets in those, and that would be unacceptable since (call me old fashioned) for me a varmint rifle should fire a relatively small bullet fast and flat...

Regards, Tony

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Absolutely, A, but to the best of my knowledge most issuing authorities will not grant bigger than .224" rounds purely for varmint hunting (i.e. "pest control" etc etc), and you have to go through the rigmarole of applying for a 6mm or bigger rifle nominally for deer hunting, with foxes/vermin as secondary use. That means having to get a permission where you can (at least in theory) shoot deer. I find all that stuff extremely irritating. Anyway, as a varmint hunting traditionalist I just think 6mm and similar bullets are a bit on the hefty side for zapping small-ish varmints: I like .22 and smaller cases, find them rewarding and fun. I've owned fewer than a dozen rifles from .20Tac to 22-250, never more than two at the same time, and liked them all. What you say about 22-250 is fair comment but I've owned four of those at different times and I like this round a lot; however, I'll never have another bog-standard factory 22-250 since my custom 20Tac out-shoots it. A custom 22-250 AI would be a different matter, still an attractive idea - though on balance 22BR makes more sense. One of these shooting the 75gr A-Max doesn't give up much to 6mm/6.5mm unless one sticks much bigger bullets in those, and that would be unacceptable since (call me old fashioned) for me a varmint rifle should fire a relatively small bullet fast and flat...

Regards, Tony

I'm old (fashioned) enough to remember when there were not 75g 224 bullets,or 58 g 6mm bullets.So just to be clear on your parameters,is the 75g 224 small,and the 58g 6mm big? ...some authoriies used to suggest a 75 grain at 3600 is minimum for 750 yard expansion-but then bullet integrity has changed too...and the early claim that the 22/250 shots dead flat to 400 yards and then rises up a mite are not sustainable in UK...

george

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm old (fashioned) enough to remember when there were not 75g 224 bullets,or 58 g 6mm bullets.So just to be clear on your parameters,is the 75g 224 small,and the 58g 6mm big? ...some authoriies used to suggest a 75 grain at 3600 is minimum for 750 yard expansion-but then bullet integrity has changed too...and the early claim that the 22/250 shots dead flat to 400 yards and then rises up a mite are not sustainable in UK...

george

 

PS I'm hearing some US reports that H 17H brass might not be great-surely not,it's just a bit more pressure on the basic old case...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm old (fashioned) enough to remember when there were not 75g 224 bullets,or 58 g 6mm bullets.So just to be clear on your parameters,is the 75g 224 small,and the 58g 6mm big?...

george

 

Not so much simple bullet weight, as bore size: the .224" centrefires were the generally accepted varmint-hunting rounds since well before WW2, and once you get into 6mm and above things start to get overgunned a bit IMO for killing (typically rather small) varmints - that 58gr 6mm bullet notwithstanding...

This is quite apart from the difficulty in this country, which I mentioned, of getting 6mm rifles certificated primarily for varmint hunting.

I agree that 75gr is on the heavy side for any .224 case, though I hear of people sticking even heavier bullets into .223 loads, at least for target shooting - and the standard military FMJ in 5.56mm is of course almost the same weight. But since standard-twist/bullet weight 22-250s are now outclassed by smaller cased rounds in terms of efficiency and (nearly) velocity as well, using a 75gr bullet and a fast twist seems the logical thing to do to keep this fine old cartridge competitive. Though the terminal results don't really equate to the big blowup from explosive fragmentation that was always considered a hallmark of those fast/flat varmint calibres...

Alycidon mentions (I think) the 20BR, another possibility for long-range varminting when teamed with the excellent 50/55gr bullets available.

Tony

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tony is correct in so much as my force will not grant anything any bigger than 22 for foxes/vermin as the primary use. Yes you can use anything bigger to take foxes etc when 'deer stalking' but it is a mite dodgy. Having a 6mm or bigger with you at night lamping foxes could leave you with a lot of explaining to do IMHO if checked.

 

Personally anything I drop a hammer on I want dead, I dont want missed/educated just dead. Thats why I never push a range envelope for what I have in my hands be it 12 bore, 22LR or centerfire of some sort.

 

A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Humm, all my Rifles are covered for deer/fox/vermin etc so I dont have this problem, they range from 22 centrefire to 6.5x55.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not so much simple bullet weight, as bore size: the .224" centrefires were the generally accepted varmint-hunting rounds since well before WW2, and once you get into 6mm and above things start to get overgunned a bit IMO for killing (typically rather small) varmints - that 58gr 6mm bullet notwithstanding...

This is quite apart from the difficulty in this country, which I mentioned, of getting 6mm rifles certificated primarily for varmint hunting.

I agree that 75gr is on the heavy side for any .224 case, though I hear of people sticking even heavier bullets into .223 loads, at least for target shooting - and the standard military FMJ in 5.56mm is of course almost the same weight. But since standard-twist/bullet weight 22-250s are now outclassed by smaller cased rounds in terms of efficiency and (nearly) velocity as well, using a 75gr bullet and a fast twist seems the logical thing to do to keep this fine old cartridge competitive. Though the terminal results don't really equate to the big blowup from explosive fragmentation that was always considered a hallmark of those fast/flat varmint calibres...

Alycidon mentions (I think) the 20BR, another possibility for long-range varminting when teamed with the excellent 50/55gr bullets available.

Tony

OK: go small and fast,many advantages,at least to 500y,say.

'700 yards and even further'has been elusive,at best,as we shall see,irrespective of chambering.Since we have drifted away from the original 17 Hornet issues,I suggest a new thread on this,and I'll start one '224 and/or 6mm varminting' in the next 24 hours-there are quite a range of issues that bear on this-for example,firearm legislation,improved equipment,USA/UK(moderators? wide open spaces?varmint size?)Ultimately,I think,what is an 'acceptable' hit rate?

But if the 750y varminter emerges,with 'good reason',I'll be having one!

george

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

.... I'll start one '224 and/or 6mm varminting' in the next 24 hours-there are quite a range of issues that bear on this....

 

George, I'll look forward to that, sounds interesting.

Tony

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Humm, all my Rifles are covered for deer/fox/vermin etc so I dont have this problem, they range from 22 centrefire to 6.5x55.

 

 

Having looked at my new certificate it states for the 6mm, 'Deer, fox and zeroing' so I don't either unless I start shooting rabbits with it. Seems things have changed and sense has prevailed.

 

A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy