Why Compare The 7mm-08 vs .270
The 30-06 Springfield, 300 Win Mag, 308 Winchester, and 300 WSM are just a few of the 30 caliber cartridges that have dominated the North American hunting scene for more than a century.
Many hunters are switching to smaller diameter bullets with less recoil and faster muzzle velocity, despite the fact that the usefulness of.308″ diameter rounds has been well documented.
With the popularity of the 6.5 Creedmoor, this transition has gained more acceptance, however the 270 Winchester and 7mm-08 Remington are two exceptionally powerful big game hunting rounds that were popular before the 6.5mm craze.
There are more similarities than differences between the 270 Winchester and the 7mm-08 Remington rifle cartridges. However, the 7mm-08 gives shooters comparable ballistic performance with less recoil in a short action rifle, despite the 270 having a slightly larger case, increased case capacity, and slightly improved downrange performance.
We shall examine in-depth how the ballistic and other performance traits of these two cartridges compare to one another in this post. As with all of our other cartridge comparisons, we are more interested in pointing out the differences and similarities rather than trying to rank one cartridge higher than the other.
Instead, we want to gain a better understanding of the circumstances and circumstances where one cartridge might be more appropriate than the other.
A Brief History
In order to match the performance of the outdated 757 Mauser in a more contemporary caliber and cartridge, the 7mm-08 Remington was introduced in the 1980s. The .308 Win cartridge was necked down to become the 7mm-08 in order to accommodate the 7mm bullet’s lower (0.284-inch) diameter.
Due to its ballistic performance and lighter recoil compared to other larger hunting cartridges, particularly some of the more popular.30 cal alternatives, 7mm bullets were becoming increasingly popular at the time of their introduction.
The more slender, aerodynamic design of the.248 caliber bullet and its improved ballistic characteristics, including the trajectory and wind resistance, contribute to these advantages.
A great hunting cartridge for medium-sized to large animals is the 7mm-08. It was meant to offer lighter recoil while keeping bullet weight and velocity that could reach out and efficiently dispatch the game.
Although the 7mm-08 has a devoted following of users, it does not enjoy the same degree of popularity as other hunting cartridges. The majority of the bullet weights are between 120 and 150 grains, however there are heavier rounds that are more akin to the typical hunting rounds of its parent casing that are available.
In 1925, the .270 Winchester/.270 Win/.270 made its debut in the hunting world, where it would initially exist in a state of relative obscurity. The .270 did not have a sizable user base for a few years.
Famous weapons and hunting author Jack O’Connor did a great job of promoting this cartridge and its capabilities in the field by informing readers with his personal exploits and experiences with the cartridge. Even today, it is still a highly popular cartridge.
Hunting for everything from little varmints and predators to large American game like sheep and deer, the .270 has been immensely popular. The .270 Winchester is significantly more adapted for killing greater game such as an elk because of advances in bullet technology.
The .30-03, which was very briefly used in the United States in the early 1900s, was the ancestor of the .270 caliber. The .30-06, which is another cartridge that derives from this parent case and is quite similar to the .270, The .270 can be compared to a necked-down .30-06 in terms of caliber.
The majority of ammunition for the .270 Winchester caliber will have bullet weights between 120 and 160 gr. For small games, there are lighter weights available. Similar to the .308, there are several alternatives for bullet weight and design that are both easily accessible and reasonably priced.
The .270 Winchester is frequently used because, like the 7mm-08, it can deliver a flat shot from a distance while maintaining the correct terminal ballistics to successfully take down medium- to even large-sized wildlife.
Cartridge Specs Comparison Between 7mm 08 vs .270 Winchester
Analyzing the cartridge specifications will help you learn more about each centerfire rifle cartridge when comparing them.
The older of the two cartridges, the 270 Winchester (or 270 Win for short), was introduced in 1923. The 30-03 was used as a parent case while creating the 270. The renowned 30-06 Springfield was bred from the 30-03, therefore the 270 is effectively a 30-06 case that has been necked down to take a 0.277″ (7mm) diameter bullet.
The 7mm-08 Remington, on the other hand, is a newcomer when compared to the 270 because it was first introduced in 1980. It’s notable that the 308 Winchester, which was created to replace the 30-06, served as the parent case for the 7mm08 ammunition (the parent case for the 270).
Similar to the 270, the 7mm-08 was created to replicate the ballistic characteristics of the 7×57 Mauser and uses a 308 cartridge that has been necked down to allow a 0.284″ (7.2mm) diameter bullet.
It’s a little misleading to say that the 7mm-08 shoots 7mm bullets because the 270 really fires 7.2mm bullets, but the ’08 fires 7mm bullets. Although the majority of shooters won’t give a hoot about the difference in bullet diameter between 7mm and 7.2mm (and I doubt a mule deer can notice the difference), handloaders must be aware of the difference when reloading for each cartridge.
The 270 is a full half inch higher than the 7mm-08, which stands at 2.035 inches, which is one noticeable difference between the two calibers. The same is true for overall length, where the 270 measures 3.34 inches as opposed to 2.80 inches for the 7mm-08 Remington.
The 270 and 7mm-08 are primarily designed as hunting rounds and are often shot from bolt-action rifles, although the difference in overall length directly relates to which action each cartridge fits into. The 7mm-08 Rem stays true to its 308 roots and fits into a short action, while the 270, like its father the 30-06, fits into a standard or long action.
A short action is often a little lighter than a standard or long action and will cycle a round with a little less bolt throw. This implies that with a short action as opposed to a long action, follow-up strokes may be a little quicker.
The 270’s longer case lets it hold more gunpowder than the 7mm-08, having a 67gr case capacity vs a 52.2 gr capacity for the 7mm-08 Remington. The SAAMI maximum chamber pressures for each hunting cartridge also varied by this much, with the 270 Winchester being able to handle 4,000 psi more at 65,000 psi as opposed to 61,000 psi for the 7mm-08.
7mm-08 vs .270 Winchester Ballistic Comparison
Ballistically, the two rounds perform similarly. They frequently have ballistic coefficients that are within.025 of one another. The 270 Winchester frequently has a higher BC than the 7mm-08. With a 7.2 vs. 7.4 sized slug, the bullet from the 270 is a little bit smaller.
The two rounds are virtually always directly on top of one another in terms of performance when you compare their ballistics. Often, the 270 Winchester performs better than the 7mm-08.
Performance is a dramatic word, and in some ways, it is. The distinctions between the two are extremely negligible and insignificant. Ballistic geeks may disagree, but in my untrained eyes, they don’t appear all that different.
The 270 Winchester consistently outperforms other rifles in terms of velocity, but only just. The 270 Winchester outperforms the 7mm-08 at 500 yards by around 100 feet per second. This holds true when you contrast various projectile weights over various ranges. Over the 7mm-08, the 270 Winchester maintains supersonic speed by around 100 yards.
The 270 Winchester has a little smaller overall drop at maximum range, but the difference is negligible. The 7mm-08 Remington drops roughly 3 inches more than the 270 Winchester out to 500 yards. It’s not severe, and at typical hunting distances, such as 0 to 300 yards, the difference is at most a few hundredths of an inch.
The difference in wind drift between the two cartridges is likewise quite slight. Again, the 270 Winchester comes out slightly ahead with less wind drift, but only by a few millimeters. The 270 Winchester appears to be somewhat superior in all areas.
What good is the 7mm-08 then? With a short action cartridge, the 7mm-08 offers you performance that is nearly equal. The 7mm-08 Remington provides you a lighter and shorter rifle and is a cartridge that is simpler to use in semi-auto platforms because the 308 was the original short action cartridge.
Ballistic Coefficient and Sectional Density
The ballistic coefficient (BC) is a measurement of a bullet’s aerodynamic efficiency and wind deflection resistance. Based on a bullet’s weight, exterior dimensions, and design, sectional density (SD) may be used to assess its ballistic performance and how well it can penetrate a target.
Generally speaking, the 270 Winchester will have a little greater BC and sectional density than the 7mm-08. Although the BC of the 270 will often be greater, the differences between it and the 7mm08 are frequently quite little.
Consider the 140 gr Berger VLD Hunting Bullets in both rifle calibers as an example. While the 7mm has a BC of 0.500, the 270 will have a BC of 0.504. Another illustration is the 139 gr GMX for 7mm-08 and the 140 gr SST for 270, both of which have ballistic coefficients of 0.495 and 0.486, respectively.
The 270 has a small advantage over the 7mm08 in terms of sectional density. This is because the 270 fires a somewhat thinner bullet at a greater velocity, allowing the whole force of the bullet to be concentrated on a smaller area and allowing it to pierce the target more deeply.
Consider Sierra’s 150 gr GameKing bullets in both calibers as an example. The SD for the 270 will be 0.279, while the SD for the 7mm-08 will be 0.266. Although the 270 will often have greater BC and SD than the 7mm-08, the variations between the two are negligibly small when contrasting bullets of same construction.
Velocity Difference between 7mm 08 vs 270 Winchester
In almost every ballistic and other performance category we’ll examine, the bullet’s velocity is a key factor. not just in terms of various ballistic characteristics, but also in terms of impact terminal performance.
While many people are typically preoccupied with the bullet’s velocity, which is significant, they sometimes overlook why it is. It involves more than simply the bullet’s velocity. As we previously stated, the effect of speed on other aspects of a bullet’s flight and response upon impact.
The bullet’s velocity is a delicate balance. If you use too little, you might not achieve the necessary penetration or expansion. A bullet with the wrong twist rate, too much velocity, or a specific design might cause an unstable flight, which reduces accuracy.
The faster a bullet can reach its target, the less time it has for external factors to change its trajectory and stability, hence velocity is also crucial. The great majority of centerfire rounds will leave the muzzle at supersonic speeds and continue to do so for at least a few hundred yards.
And certainly, we are aware that there are some subsonic rounds, but they are neither as common nor as pertinent in our comparison. When stabilized, bullets traveling at supersonic speed tend to have a far more stable and predictable flight than when traveling at lower speeds.
If we only look at the averages, we can see that the .270 Winchester bullet travels at around 200 fps more than the 7mm08 rounds from the muzzle out to 500 yards. Given the greater recoil, we would anticipate this, and the .270 cartridge’s larger case volume likely indicates that it contains more propellant than the 7mm08 rounds. Additionally, it will result in enhanced velocity with identical bullet weights.
Although the .270 Winchester has the edge in average bullet velocity, the graph contains some rounds of each kind of cartridge. The performance of the 139gr Hornady SST 7mm08 cartridge is almost on par with that of the two quickest. Better than some of the other ones, with 270 rounds. Besides one 7mm-08 round, we also offer a .270 Winchester round with the slowest velocity.
We should also point out that hunters who desire a specific level of penetration and expansion must also consider the velocity statistics. The manufacturer should have the necessary data on bullet expansion and velocity level so you can know how well each bullet will expand at different ranges. We will cover penetration in a later section. As a factor in the amount of momentum and kinetic energy the round is carrying, velocity is also crucial for stopping power.
Trajectory Comparison Between 7mm 08 vs .270 Winchester
When comparing the performance of two distinct rounds or cartridges, the trajectory is one of the most often discussed ballistic characteristics. This is especially true for cartridges used by hunters and long-range shooting enthusiasts. When we discuss trajectory, we merely mean the amount a bullet will decrease as it comes closer to its target.
A bullet’s flight path has a distinctive arc, and the projectile gradually loses elevation. The trajectory of a bullet is influenced by a number of factors, including bullet specifications and ambient factors. As with gravity and wind resistance, the bullet’s trajectory is influenced by its velocity as well as its BC.
Most hunters and marksmen like a bullet that shoots flatly. And by flat, we imply that the elevation gradually descends with less noticeable force. This flatter trajectory should theoretically make accuracy and precision more feasible as it makes it simpler to modify for shots at further distances.
Less than 20 inches of bullet drop are present out to 350 yards for both of these cartridges, which have very flat trajectories. Up until 200 yards, there is no discernible difference between the two rounds. From that point on, the .270 Winchester bullet begins to have a flatter trajectory than the 7mm-08 cartridge.
With a 10-inch differential between the two at the 500-yard mark, the gap is still not too pronounced. It’s important to remember that the 7mm-08 round weighs a little bit more than the .270 Winchester round. With a lighter 7mm-08 flat shooting cartridge, the trajectory variation could be less noticeable.
Short Range Trajectory
The cartridges under consideration for this topic have very comparable short-range trajectories overall. The best performing rounds from this group are .270 Winchester rounds, however quite a number of the 7mm08 bullets have a bullet drop of only 25 to 28 inches at 400 yards. There is a lot of overlap when examining the separate rounds, and they frequently occupy the same space.
Long Range Trajectory
Even though the .270 Winchester has a sizable edge when examining averages at 1000 yards, these two cartridges have a wide range when examining individual rounds. At this distance, one .270 Winchester round’s bullet drop is just 280 inches, whilst another’s is 444 inches. The best-performing 7mm-08 round has a bullet drop of 295 inches, but another has a drop of 435 inches.
Therefore, even though there is a general tendency for the .270 Winchester flat shooting cartridge to have a flatter trajectory at long distances, there are many rounds for these two cartridges that have a steeper trajectory. Additionally, the ones that are steeper presumably have other qualities that make them desirable for particular purposes including long range shooting.
Recoil and Muzzle Rise Difference
The 7mm-08 is advancing to claim victory in the end. Compared to the 270 Winchester model, the recoil of the 7mm-08 is significantly smaller. The 7mm-08 produces around 5 less foot-pounds of recoil when measured in foot-pounds of energy. Although it’s not really important, it should be acknowledged that it is perceptible, and many people might prefer the lesser recoil over the 270 Winchester.
Although there aren’t many changes in performance downrange, your shoulder’s sensation is crucial. It is difficult to compare the muzzle increase between the two. It’s difficult to say which leaps more as the majority of rifles for either cartridge have single-shot bolt actions.
The shorter action of the 7mm-08 will make it easier to use for overall faster follow-up shots. According to me, that has a bigger impact than muzzle increase. Although the longer and heavier 270 Winchester rifles may aid with less recoil, the 7mm08 still prevails.
Ammo Price and Availability
When comparing the 7mm 08 vs .270 Winchester, ammo availability and price would definitely be an important factor to consider. You can get both of these rounds at most major retail locations, but there are a lot more available. More possibilities and 270 rounds. Simply put, more manufacturers are producing more .270 ammunition than 7mm08 ammo at the moment since demand for it is stronger.
You have a wider range of costs when it comes to the .270 Winchester since there are more selections available. I believe it to be true that the majority of us won’t mind spending a little extra money if a round has proven itself to us. A box of 20 7mm-08 rounds will often cost a few dollars extra, but the price difference between the two rounds is not really noticeable.
For calibers between the 7mm 08 vs .270, it’s difficult to use them in anything but bolt actions. Nevertheless, there are some significant advantages to using a cartridge that was created in 1925 rather than 1980. The 270 Winchester cartridge has been used in countless rifles throughout the years, and there are some really excellent blued steel and wood weapons available.
For semi-auto choices, Browning produces a BAR for each cartridge, while single-shot rifles are widely available in each caliber. One of the major benefits of employing the 7mm-08 is the ability to use small, frequently lightweight guns.
Rarely does the 270 Winchester model have short, 18-inch barrels that weigh 6 pounds total. You can locate shorter 270 Winchesters if you look hard enough, but beware—the 270 loses more velocity than most due to shorter barrels.
Final Verdict: Is The 7mm 08 Better Than The 270?
The information we have examined in the 7mm-08 vs. .270 comparison leads us to believe that these two cartridges are capable of carrying out their intended function.
Between 24 caliber and 30 caliber rifles, the 270 Winchester and 7mm-08 both fill the void. These middle solutions outperform the majority of the opposition by being effective and adaptable.
These two American-made hunting bullets have successfully killed numerous deer, mule deer, elk, and pigs throughout the nation. Both cartridges offer a high level of performance, from the humid southeast to the vast west.
Both of these cartridges may be used for the same shooting tasks, and we believe that whichever one you choose—or both—will make you pleased. It’s crucial above all else that you develop confidence in your chosen cartridge. You can achieve the performance you desire with the correct round and some range time, whether you’re using the 7mm-08 or the.270.