Browning BLR experiences

Discussion in 'Hunting Discussion' started by Googin, Feb 8, 2007.

  1. Googin

    Googin Newbie

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    Well I took my son shooting for the first time and he was really into it. His frame is still a little small for my 870 youth gun but he had a blast with a 22 semi auto. With a little coaching he looks like he could become a great shot.

    More to the point, getting out shooting for the first time in years reminded me how much I enjoyed it. I've decided to pick up a new rifle and I think I've settled on a BLR in .308.

    Does anyone have any experience with this rifle? I can't find much bad press except some people don't like the trigger.


    BTW anyone interested in a Howa 1500 270 Win, or 12 gauge 870 Special Purpose Synthetic 3" chamber. I don't want to post them in classifieds because I'll probably look into using as a trade or consignment when I find a gun shop I like. Figured I'd just offer them here for anyone interested. Both are great shape I just don't need the shotgun and I was never happy with the 270 as a caliber I want to own.
     
  2. el Toro

    el Toro I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    Not happy with the .270? Huh? asphinctersayswhat? Wow, that is a bold call. IMO, it's more versatile than the .308, though either will kill the same critter just as dead out to any reasonable range. It's a fantastic caliber, maybe not the best elk round out there (although it has certainly killed its fair share) but it's perhaps the best deer round ever made. I gotta know, whatchu got against the .270? Jack O'Connor is rolling over in his grave as we speak.

    Anyhow, the BLR is a fine rifle. A short action round like the .308 in that gun would make a nice brush buster. Would be a great pig gun. For longer range accuracy's sake, however, you will be better off with a bolt gun. Inherently, they are the most accurate in most cases. And if you really wanted something with a bit more punch, and a tad more verstility, go with the venerable 30-06.
     
  3. speedgoat

    speedgoat Green Bastard

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    So Nate, are you a small-bore guy or what? LOL

    I shoot a 7mm, so I guess I'm a small-bore guy too. :D

    I think the .270 is a fine all-purpose cartridge, just as Jack O'Connor espoused. It's hard to do worse than that, but then it also depends on what you're hunting.

    My question would be, why a lever action rifle? Bolt guns are far more accurate and tuneable. One well placed shot is far better than having superior firepower IMHO. I've heard BLR's are nice guns, but if I were to buy a lever action brush gun it would be a Marlin Guide Gun in .45-70.

    Also like Nate sez, it's hard to beat the old .30-'06 for all around versatility. That cartridge has probably killed more critters than any other.
     
  4. blowboater

    blowboater Fishing with Papa

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    What they said! I love my weatherby mark V in 270. . .it's my 1st and only HP rifle.
     
  5. rdrrm8e

    rdrrm8e Fucking Stan

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    I am new to the .270...........but I likey

    my first trip to the range:

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Googin

    Googin Newbie

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    I like the lever for the looks. This will be a work horse gun for shooting out here in Califorinia and for deer and moose in Maine. Back in Maine I don't need the MOA of a bolt it will be fun to test this gun to it's limits.

    Okay maybe it's not the round but with this Howa, it was my first centerfire and I bought it for my first deer hunt. It was an impulse buy, good price, etc. Since the first round I touched off, the gun itself has never been comfortable too me. Also the lever will push the brush better back in Maine.

    If I really get back into shooting with the .308 I'll look into a hobby gun/caliber.
     
  7. Rubberhook2

    Rubberhook2 Local Bluefin

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    I have killed a shitload of wild hogs with a .270, some out to 400 yards. A very flat shooting cartridge. I shoot a 150 grain Nosler Partition out of it and most of the time it goes completly through them.

    I have a .308 as well, shoot 180 grain Noslers out of it, but I only like it out to about 100 yards. Great knockdown power, but a big heavy bullet with not enough powder behind it for long range shooting...
     
  8. okie man

    okie man I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    i like my bolt guns alot but after getting a nice lever gun and taking it elk hunting its hard to not reach for it when picking a gun to have fun with.great to carry, more than accurate enough for most hunting. 308 plenty for any game in north america not including the great bears.buy it and have fun !!!!!
     
  9. Googin

    Googin Newbie

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    Not to get into a pissin contest about the virtues of each cal, I have to beg to differ over the 100 yard limitation you worry about. I've been thinking about what caliber I wanted and about future hobby guns/reloading and most ballistic charts show the 270 dropping 2" more compared with the .380 at 400 yards with comparative bullet design/weight. But with the .380 I can find the 180gr bullets to shoot. Some factory loads will only drop 2" more then the 270 150gr. The way I see it, if I have to hold over the target, there is not much difference between 26" and 28".

    BUT, will the lever action give me the accuracy out to 400 yards is really the question. Time will tell

    Both are great cartridges. I'm just thinking of the possibilities if I decide to come up with some custom loads.
     
  10. speedgoat

    speedgoat Green Bastard

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    For whitetails in Maine a .308 should work fine out to longer ranges, shot placement being the key of course. It's a short action round and in a lever action gun in the brush it will probably perform well given that you do your part. But in a lever action rifle, don't expect to be picking the flies off of pine cones at 400 yds. if you know what I mean.

    For moose I'd step up to at least a .30-06 unless you're close enough and confident enough to put one right behind their ear. I say that because I know guys in Alaska that kill moose with .223's doing in that way.

    If you want a gun that does both, why not just get a .30-06? I believe Browning makes a BLR in that caliber.
     
  11. chevypickle23

    chevypickle23 Newbie

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    Okay now I have to step in what the hell is rubberhook talking about the 308 not having enough umphh behind it at longer ranges. Really last time I checked almost every country in the world uses that round in its sniper rifles. Man thats a first for me but what would I know about guns, ballistics, terminal ballistics. I don't shoot let alone hunt for a living the 2 legged kind that is. Rant over and by the way the 270 is a killer round buddies dad just bagged another elk this year with it. Thats all he hunts elk with and he shoots one every year.
     
  12. Fresh One

    Fresh One Well-Known "Member"

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    If you are debating lever versus bolt action, then we have something to debate. I've never shot a lever action so I can't join in on the fun.

    Debating between a .270, .308 or .30-06 for a gun to shoot deer sized animals is like arguing over the hot red head, hot blond or the hot brunette. They are all hot and have big tits and a small ass. Pick one and you can't go wrong. Rifle nuts like Nate and Speedy :rofl: will talk all day about MOA and bullet trajectory, etc... All excellent and interesting discussion topics around the campfire with a short glass of Makers in your hand, but once your rifle is sighted in, its all pretty much the same. If you do your part, the result is a dead animal, a short term mess to clean up, and a freezer full of god's finest meat.

    Most animals are killed well inside 200 yards and the difference in bullet drop between any of those calibers is minute. All 3 pack plenty of wallop.

    Now, if you are thinking about hunting elk or moose sized critters, the .30-06 will give you more versatility IMO. Almost anyone will tell you that from a versatility standpoint, the ol' .30-06 is tough to beat.
     
  13. Tree Doc

    Tree Doc Pain in the Ass

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    I'll avoid the pissin' match between calibers, I have a few of each so that solves that problem.

    The BLR is a very nice rifle. I had one but it was chambered in .257 Roberts. As mentioned previously, because of the nature of the lever action with all the pressure points on the barrel, I found it very hard to really accurize this gun. I did a lot of load development and about as best as I could get was maybe 1" moa which is certainly fine for most hunting conditions but I always wanted better.

    One thing you must consider is it's a magazine fed rifle. You are immediately limited in Cartridge Overall Length (OAL) because of that. In my case, when I did get a round built that would shoot real tight, it was too long to fit in the magazine. If you're going to shoot only factory rounds then that might be a moot point.

    In short, if you're expecting better than moa accuracy or going for that potential 400 yard shot, you'de be better served by a bolt rifle. If a stylish brush gun is sufficient for shorter range shooting like out to 200 yds, the BLR would be fine.
     
  14. Googin

    Googin Newbie

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    Now I'm just getting into this caliber thing but how does anyone claim the .308 is lacking with any significance over the 30-06.

    The 30-06 can get factory loads w/ 220gr bullets. But specs on remington.com for their factory loads of 180gr bullets/loads show the .308 only gives up 100ft/lbs of energy and less than 100 ft/sec out to 400 yards. Plenty of killing power for anything except big bears and plenty of moose go down to the .308.

    As for the potential accuracy of the lever, I'll post some groups from the gun after it's broken in.
     
  15. Tree Doc

    Tree Doc Pain in the Ass

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    Keep in mind those ballistic tables from the factories can be, for a lack of a better term, "flawed" or skewed in favor of their product and are always done in very controlled environment with test barrels.

    That said, I have never loaded anything in my '06 that was heavier than 180 grains. I shoot the Nosler Partition in a 180 for Pigs. Almost every '06 I have had exposure to has always done well with a 165 grain bullet. My "go-to" .30-'06 is a Ruger M77 MkII with a Hogue CNC 'd full bed stock, trigger work, and a Leupold VX III 4.5-14x40LR and it will shoot the Federal Premium 165 Sierra Gameking bullet at 1/2" moa. I have duplicated the load with RL22 at 62.0 grains which is a compression load. The 180's don't shoot as tight but do an easy .75-1.0" moa. Bigger than that and accuracy starts to decline.

    The .308 should push that 165-168gr bullet sufficiently but beyond that in weight, you need more case capacity like the '06. If you aren't shooting heavier and are working in that 150-165 range, you'll be fine.
     
  16. el Toro

    el Toro I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    The 30-06 shows its advantage in shooting hot 180gr loads. Look at the Hornady light magnum line for example. I have a 180gr btsp box right here and the ballistics are 2900 fps at the muzzle, 1.9" high at 100, 0 at 200, -7.5" at 300. and-21.5" at 400. I've killed a few truckloads of pigs with this, a few deer, and a bull elk at 328 yards (1 shot, 25 yd death sprint). Very, very effective.

    While the difference on game is probably negligible if hit in the right spot, you just are'nt going to get ballistics like that out of a .308 and 180 gr bullets. So yes, the 30-06 does have a slight advantage, but not really enough to argue
    over.

    I would further state that if you are definitely sold on the lever gun, the short action of the .308 would probably make for a faster handling and cycling rifle. Definitely a neat gun, but more of a novelty. I have a Savage 99 in .300 savage that I use for the same purpose in theory, but with an '06 bolt gun, the lever spends most of its time in the safe.

    If you really want to take 400yd shots and might be hunting larger game like elk, moose and bear, the '06 will give you more juice and a bolt gun will give you better accuracy for those longer pokes. Over all, a more well rounded choice.




    EDIT: I stand somewhat corrected. Federal makes a 180 Nosler Partition in their "High Energy" loading that is very close to the balistics above. Only about 150 fps slower and only a couple-few inches difference in drop. That makes the .308 a close contender for a larger game round, IMO. This loading would be a fine choice for elk and moose, even if the -06 does have a slight edge.
     
  17. Googin

    Googin Newbie

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    .308 it is for me. I'm going to learn some reloading, practice with this lever, and see if I want to peek back in here and talk some smack about my novelty gun.

    I like a challlenge. Thanks for inputs everyone.
     
  18. Rubberhook2

    Rubberhook2 Local Bluefin

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    Perhaps I was a little short-sided on the .308 cartridge. The comment aboout sniper rifles really brought that home. When you compare the cartidges side by side, without studying the ballistics, it is easy to assume the .270 is the superior round especially for long range shooting.

    It all boils down to confidence...confidence to be able to make the shot at almost any range. When I'm in the field rifle hunting I always go to the .270 (for everything but elk, which I use my 7MM) and it has always served me well. I shoot the Federal 180 grain high energy round out of the .308 but never developed the confidence that it could handle a 300+ yard shot without significant bullet drop. Obviously you can't develop confidence in something if you don't try it...

    Quick, somebody call the paramedics. I need to have my foot surgically removed from my mouth...
     
  19. chevypickle23

    chevypickle23 Newbie

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    Hey I wasn't busting your chops only saying the 308 is a round you can have a lot of faith in. Having hunted with a 270 numerous times I just like anyone else with trigger time loves the round. Rant over.
     
  20. Rubberhook2

    Rubberhook2 Local Bluefin

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    No worries Chuck, no offense taken. If anything you opened my eyes that I need to be a little more open minded. If the round is good enough for a sniper that in itself says alot...
     

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