I'm sure the .17 can take most small critters but if grenading varmints is a measure of cartridge effectiveness then even the lowly .22 Hornet with 40-45 grain spitzer handloads does it better ... and cheaper and may be tailored for more or less expansion too through bullet choices. Use a .220 Swift on a 'coon at 100 yards or so and it'll cloud up and rain fur for days.
"cloud up and rain fur for days". This is exactly correct. The 17 is a niffty little cartridge for sure. The problem is it's one of those speciality rounds. It's pin hole sized bullets and high velocity are great for flat shots, on windless days on smallish animals. Sure, I'm sure you can kill bigger stuff with it, but just because you "can" doesn't mean you should.
The light bullet also shed velocity very quickly, as compared to the heavier rimfires.
But, what it does is kill small rodents very well, while providing the shooter with less holdover to guess than a .22 mag.
Like anything else, use within limits and don't try to do things with it that is iffy, and it will be capable. But for the cost, give me a good ol .22 LR anyday, and if I need more I'll grab the Hornet or 223.
I only brought up varmints because it was a real life comparison... me shooting my .22 WRM to me shooting my .17 HMR. The OP asked for fans of the .17 HMR and I told him why I am. Bringing centerfire cartridges into this is... I don't know. Like having a thread going on about 9mm vs a .45 ACP and someone comes in as says they can tailor load their 12 ga with slugs to do a better job, lol.
I don't understand people comparing rimfire to centerfire rifles. The choices really boil down to the .22 Short, .22 LR, .17 HM2, .22 WSM, and .17 HMR. If people are going to compare, try to keep it realistic. Here in GA, you can only hunt small game with a rimfire rifle or shotgun. This also rules out guns like the hornet, swift, or .223. I absolutely adore the .17 as a rimfire round.
It's a good comparison I think, because realistically, it's the truth. I think bmcgilvray and myself are just articulting the position that if grenading varmits makes it worth the extra cost to shoot, then what's the point if you have centerfire cartridges out there that can do it harder, farther, and cheaper? And anything under 100 yards can be done quite well and cheaper with the 22 lr.
So in conclusion, I think it was fair to try and give the OP and objective opinion on the 17. What one buys is their business, but if someone wants to know what you think about it, is it not fair to be as honest as possible?
As a point of interest, I have a nice little CZ chambered for the 17, so my opinion is based on what I have observed and thoughts thereof. It has been in the safe for several years, and will be used as a trader. Great gun, nice concept, just don't see the advantage.
I've shot skunks with a .22LR that were just as dead as the gopher I detonated with a .17 Vmax...and shot skunks that took 3 hits from a .17 to die using the TNT. I really don't care about how spectacular a kill is against a varmint I want removed; I just want it dead...and .17 isn't always good at doing it (see previous example). If I want spectacular, I'll haul out the .223 and NBT's or Ballistic Silvertips...but that'll be against something coyote sized or larger, or out further than 100-150 yards. Smaller and at closer range, .22LR does just fine.
For the price, I think .22 WMR does a better job for less than .17.
JMO, coming from someone who bought into the hype, and saw through it.
Just for fun, here's an ancient scanned photo taken in the late 1980s at 2:30 in the morning. The landowner was grateful for the reduction of 'coons in his large pecan orchards and the rabbits made good dinners.
I'm holding my Ruger 77V .220 Swift. The 'coon shot with it that night was the one that made it cloud up and rain fur. He didn't make the photo due to disassembly issues. All others fell to a plain ol' 22 with Federal 40 grain copper plated solids. One rabbit was 100 yards out in the spotlight beam and fell to one shot from my Winchester Model 57.
Still shoot that Swift regularly along with the old Winchester. Still have that old jacket and use it when doing yard work. Even still have that old shirt. I need to do something about my sartorial ensemble. Everything I've got is old.
:lolp: That's spectacular writing, I don't care who you are :lol:Quote:
The 'coon shot with it that night was the one that made it cloud up and rain fur. He didn't make the photo due to disassembly issues
Great responses around the board :yup: This is exactly the kind of info that I need.
I've got a great little 10/22 for my .22lr needs. The problem is that I can't reliably put down jackrabbits with it. I swear that I get good vital hits, but past 50 yards, they just seem to run off...
There's a lot of mixed feelings about the .17HMR. Some people say that they have no penetration, I've read on other forums where they penetrate very well through.
Same stuff about critters; groundhogs that run off and ones that literally explode :dunno: It annihilates rabbits, but lacks the penetration for coyotes. I swear that some of our jacks are nearly as big as coyotes.
I don't reload, nor do I see it being a possibility in the near future, so comparing ammo costs to reloaded ammo costs is moot for me.
I bought a Marlin 917v a few years ago, with the intention of building it up. I haven't got to that yet, but I will soon. Anyway, the debate is a little silly to me, as rimfire is supposed to be fun. Varmint hunting is about shooting skill, getting rid of pests and having fun. The .17 just offers something different to shoot. I can't say its any better or worse than a 22mag or 22lr, but I can say its different. While squirrel hunting, I like to mix it up. Sometimes, I'll take a modded out 10/22, sometimes my T/C Classic, a Ruger mark2, one of the CZ's or sometimes the 917. Heck, sometimes I break out my old Sheridan pellet gun for added challenge and to bring back memories. It just gives me a different style and challenge. Taking advantage of the guns assets, advantages and disadvantages is 3/4 of the fun for me.
Hey zacii, not tryin to say don't get it, just to point out all the options. Rabbits, squirrels , skunks and other similar sized critters should go down pretty good with a 17 within it's limits. I've killed skunks with a well placed pellet from an air rifle( Sheridan Blue Streak). Just have fun.
You may need something larger for coyotes. I use a .22-250 for most of my coyotes. Occasionally I'll use the SKS, but either one works just as well.