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InTheSticks

17 HMR - has it a niche ?

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Currently I have a 22RF and a T3 223 and am looking to add a 17 Hornet as I feel it slots in nicely between the 2 for standard vermin  . . .. .  bunny, crow, pigeon etc. I can't help but think a 17 HMR fits somewhere between the 22RF and the Hornet and wondered if to get a slot on my ticket for the HMR aswell or would it be a complete waste - does the Hornet do what the HMR can but more to boot or is there a justifiable reason for a HMR? (Only reason I can think is the round price) Have spoke to a lot of vermin control professionals and get mixed reports, was wondering what the general 2 cents is from anyone that has either owned both in the past or perhaps uses both currently ? thanks ahead.

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Just get the 17 hornet, might cost a bit more for ammo but will be a better all round than the hmr, unless the cost of ammo is a real issue!! Or better still get a 17 fireball😃and reload for it.

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I have to agree with the above , get the hornet 👍 I have an old Bruno fox .22 hornet , it’s had a good few thousand rounds down it in its life time , but will still drop a Fox at 200 yards with a well aimed shot in the Bib  . And when it finally gives up which will be sooner rather than later it will be replaced with the modern day 17 hornet 

Both of the above are very good calibres , very easily moderated , and very under estimated. 

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It may under some very particular circumstances. If you have a closed certificate for example, land is more likely to be cleared for rim fire use than even the smallest of centre fire calibres. I've experienced this a couple of time, in which case an HMR  was pretty handy. If you don't reload then HMR is a lot cheaper (roughly 35p v £1 per shot for 17H?).
 

Quote

(Only reason I can think is the round price)

If you reload 17H then I doubt there's much in it compared to HMR.

 

I have a 17H and I still kind of regret selling my old HMR for some reason I can't quite put my finger on...

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I have had both and still have 17hmr. Niche?  Don't know really but a question on hmr always gets negative feedback. Hornet was useful when lack of hmr ammo. Reloading can replicate hmr/wsm or better it and at same cost. Good factory ammo but cost has increased and low stock levels in rfds. Performance compared to factory 55gr 223. So why not have a 223 as factory ammo can be bought for less? Plus more suitable for range. Hmr works with 16" barrel on a lighter frame so nice package to carry, more choice of rifles, higher magazine capacity , easier to moderate with smaller mod and deemed suitable for more land. Bulk deals on ammo available and stocked by most rfds. Although sometimes not a choice of brand,  i think originally they were made by one manufacturer and all give adequate accuracy in a bog standard cz. Probably missed something but i think hmr is OK just not for every body. 

 

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I had one of the first 17HMR's in the UK and Met police went nuts as it was such fast round - until I presented the fact it was frangible.  I've had two.  I sold my last one 6 years ago due to poor ammunition - a fact which still exists on occasions today.  At 60 - 100 yards I dispatched over 400 foxes on a hill top pig farm in three years - head shots, three ran more than five feet.   The cost of ammunition - £14.00 per box did not bother me as 20 fags are a tenner!!!!!!

I recently purchased a stunning Weihrauch HW66 Jagd-Match in 17H having sold my .223.  100 rounds in and I have gone back to .223 (God it feels SO good)

The 17H is a great round.  As Richy rightly states, a rimfire (17HMR) is more likely to get clearance on smaller parcels of land / near houses than a CF.

My rifle was so quiet - Wildcat Panther mod - compared to the kerack of a 17HMR and no recoil with - pretty much the only available factory pills, Hornady 20gn V-max, it would shoot in a 50p at 100 yards.  I do not reload.

I do not see the point of the 17WSM.

Why sell the Hornet ?  On two of my fox perms, I personally do not consider 17H to be a confident round to shoot in windy valleys at 200 yards.  My opinion.  My comfort zone.  I'm much happier with a .223 with a 40gn V-max - or on Saturday shooting GECO 56gn into clover leafs at 100 and the ammunition / range of ammunition / availability is cheaper / better than 17H.  The .223 also covers me for deer as a bonus.

To answer your question - yes it does have a niche and a good one as a cheap 50 - 200 yard crow / rabbit rifle and 50 - 100 yard fox rifle.

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I was faced with the same dilemma as you I had a .223 Remington 700 and lethal for fox but I wanted a small vermin gun as well as the odd fox to 300yds. I bought a .17 hornet and put a digisite on it for evenings/night. Perfect in still or light wind, back to the .223 in blowy conditions or the .308 for the odd night foxing in really windy conditions. The choice was perfect for me - .22 rf .17hornet .223,  308.

i shall now replace the .308 for tikka/sako probably 

I use the heavier 20grain/25 grain when I can get the latter. MV of 3600, same as my load for the .223. 

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The HMR does have a niche as a volume point and shoot Rabbit rifle, the only issue round here at least is a distinct lack of Rabbits.  Good for short range Fox but I would say not past 75 yards and placement needs to be perfect.

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I can only speak from the limited experience of just over a year and +500 rounds with the hmr. I used to use this for longer ranges (than my .22LR) and where the noise wasn't a problem. I find now though that the .17 is my preferred rifle of the two, I've not used the .22 for about six months. Through the winter almost all of my shooting has been at night and the noise of the .17 just doesn't seem to spook the rabbits the same way it does during the day.

I have yet to experience any ammunition problems. Well, apart from a run-in with Border Force when returning from the USA with a boxful. 😀

 

 

Just my 2p'worth.

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I have Cz452 17hmr +452 .22 both fitted with mods and prefer the 17hmr check out the performance on a comparison ballistics chart with the weight and distance and see the 17hmr performance now just got a 22wmr which on some distances a tad in front of the smaller 17. just Luvv 'em.

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I made the moved from the HMR to the 17 fireball a bit fiddly to load for but I'll never go back cheap to load and better brass life than expected!

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1 hour ago, Matt234 said:

I made the moved from the HMR to the 17 fireball a bit fiddly to load for but I'll never go back cheap to load and better brass life than expected!

Same as you Matt with the jump from hmr to fireball and am I happy😃.  But saying that, I still think the hmr is a cracking little round if used sensibly, I bought an anschutz 1717dhb off the first shipment into the country, I've had all the ammo problems,split necks,hangfires, flames of burning powder spitting out the end of barrel, bullet lodged in barell ( that fecked my bunnie session that night)but my rfd managed to get me 2 free bricks of ammo so not so bad😀, my mate had same but was not so lucky, he blew his magazine out and fecked his stock 😟,amazingly didn't bugger his  barell or himself. And with all that, I still loved that little round!!, BUT the fireball will make me forget that hmr.

 

 

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I’ve had a few HMRs, and really rated them for rabbiting but I gave up on them when ammo quality became an issue. Accuracy and consistency was variable and though I had never suffered a safety problem, Ihad witnessed barrel blockages and hang fires and decided it was no longer for me.

I switched to 17 Hornet and have had a couple of CZs so far and delighted that I made the change. They are seemingly no louder than HMR, but the extra 1000+fps is certainly noticeable in the field. I have had no luck with Hornady factory ammo nor bullets, but home loaded Bergers make tiny little groups.

Or if money saving, cheap Kranks Value bullets over N110 make ammo that is sub MOA and cheaper than HMR.

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I had an HMR, sold it, bought a 17H and have recently bought another HMR. I'm currently shooting a LOT of rabbits a week at night with the HMR/PARD combo, just walking about zapping them between 50 and 150 yards with Hornady 17gr Vmax. I'm quite enjoying just grabbing a couple of boxes of HMR from the cabinet and setting off and not having to reload the hornet every other night or worry about losing brass etc. I've probably put a 1,000 rounds through it in a bit over a month with no ammo issues of any kind. I recall with my original HMR that a large % of the spent brass would have split necks and in some cases bodies, I'm seeing just the occasional neck split this time around. 

TL:DR - loving the HMR second time around. Its not a 300 yard crow gun like the hornet but for point and squirt bunny bashing its a winner for me, might buy another shorter one that fits in the truck a bit better.

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I own four HMR's and haven't fired any of them in almost 8 years. I have owned 17 MACH IV (what Remington stole the Fire Ball from) and the 17 Ackley Hornet and the 17 Remington. I would get the Hornet. A friend of mine has the 17 H CZ American and loves it to death. I've seen him smack prairiedogs out to 300 yards.~Andrew

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Hmr is our go to rifle for nv bunny bashing. It fits in nicely between .22rf, .17 fb and .223. Still  a few duff rounds out there as my mate extricated a bullet from the  beginning of the rifling the other week. Probably old stock. 

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I think the niche for .17HMR is that FEO`s are happy to allow first time FAC holders have the calibre , most progress to centrefire when allowed.

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A good niche for it is as a novelty paperweight imho.  I had one for 5 years and had quite a few safety issues with ammo, very variable ammo quality.  When I could get ammo, every batch and sometimes every box would shoot differently meaning constant re-zeroing and then about 5 in every box would have split necks with at least one or two squib rounds.  I had enough of it and got shot.  When I could get decent ammo, it shot into about an inch at 100 yds on a good day (16 inch barrel) and at 200yds wasn't near accurate enough if there was more than a puff of wind.  Great for bunny bashing to 150 yds, not much good for anything else imho.  The 22LR and 223 do everything I need for vermin control between them.  I'd like a little 17 hornet at some point as that would be a far better choice than the HMR.  That one's doomed for obscurity.  Even the ammo isn't that cheap any more. (ok still cheaper than CF but when you consider the re-zeroing with each batch of rounds, you waste 5 or 10 rounds per box so here locally at £17/50 you end up really paying £17/40 and I can almost home load cheap 223 rounds for that!)

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