The DIY Hunter

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Favorite 270 WSM Handload Bullets

A couple of my favorite 270 WSM loads left to right:
• 130g Barnes Triple Shock
• 140g Nosler AccuBond

My favorite close range load (300 yards and under) is the 130g Barnes Triple Shock. However at longer ranges although very accurate, I just don't get the expansion and performance on elk like I want to see. It's taken one shot kills on cow elk out to 608 yards but it has also required multiple boiler room shots on elk in the 360 to 555 yard range with bullets zipping in one shoulder and out the other, all the way out to 608 yards. I'll bet the MRX and the Tipped Triple Shock expand better at longer ranges. The Tipped Triple shock has done wonders on elk with the 243 WSSM but again, I'm not entirely comfortable with expansion past 350 yards. You can read more about my thoughts on the Triple Shock in my Recovered Barnes Triple Shock Bullets journal entry.

At 300 yards and beyond I'm leaning towards the 140g Nosler AccuBond load. These bullets are equally as accurate as the Triple Shocks however, at closer ranges and at the extremely high velocity from my 28" barreled Model 1885, this bullet has disintegrated. You can read about that in my 2009 Cow Elk Hunt journal entry. Since the AccuBond is going a hundred and fifty feet slower in my X-Bolt it should hold together better at shorter ranges although I still am going to opt for sliding bullets behind the shoulder of elk to be safe. I'm thinking it might be the all-around bullet to drop deer and elk at any reasonable range.

Here are some hunts with the 140g Accubond Handload

Recovered from elk 150 Gr. Accubond LR

Where's the lead? Whats left of a recovered 150 Gr. Accubond Long Range bullet from Dallen's 2013 Utah bull elk. Isn't the lead supposed to be bonded to the copper?

Here's my experiences with the 150 Gr. Accubond Long Range Bullet

  • See how the bullet performs or should I say disintegrates when Dallen shoots a six point bull during the 2013 Utah youth elk hunt.
  • Dallen shoots a nice mule deer in 2013 with a 270 WSM and a 150 Gr. Accubond Long Range bullet.

I'm probably just a little too demanding. Or... actually, I think that I just like to tinker. If I shot the same bullet and rifle all my life I would miss out on all the fun experimenting with the different flavors of bullets and rifles. Having vanilla ice cream all the time is a little boring for me. I know the old faithful Nolser Partition is probably the best all-around bullet ever made for taking big game at almost any range but, where would the fun be if I didn't get to experiment with Rocky Road or Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough?

With general duplex rifle scopes I like to sight-in my big game rifles two and a half inches high at 100 yards. Depending on the load and rifle listed below, shooting at a 7 inch target I get max-point-blank ranges between 335 and 370 yards. At 600 yards the drop is between 33 and 45 inches low, depending again on the rifle and load. From 0 to 400 yards I can hold on an elk or deer with no hold over required. Now, I do hold on the lower part of the shoulders for basically a heart shot when I am in the 100-200 yard range and I hold for a higher shoulder shot in the 400 yard range.

In 2013 I have been switching my rifle scopes over to Vortex Viper scopes with both hold-over aiming points and target turret elevation turrets. I then sight my rifles in for 100 yards and either use the hold-over aiming marks for quick shots or dial in the exact distance for the conditions using Strelok Android App on my phone. See what my X-Bolt 20 MOA Picatinny Rail and Vortex Viper HS LR Rifle Scope in 2013.

Here's some DIY Hunting Rifle Target Downloads that might be helpful as well.

Bullet Powder Primer COAL Barrel Length Muzzle Velocity Notes
150 Gr Hornady SST
(G7 .245 BC)
67 Gr Hodgdon H1000 WLRM 2.8170 23" 3100 Awesome accuracy. This is my favorite load for my X-Bolt. It performs the better on game and is the most accurate as well. See article: 150 Gr Hornady SST In My 270 WSM X-Bolt
150 Gr. Berger VLD 66.4 Grains, Hodgdon H1000 WLRM  2.7930-2.7950 28" 3130 fps Very accurate. This is my favorite load for my 1885 single shot rifle. Great accuracy for hitting long-range steel targets. See article: Rifle Golf with a 270 WSM at Spirit Ridge
150 Gr. Accubond Long Range 58.5 Grains, IMR 4350 WLRM  2.8625-2.8635 23" 3034 fps Sub MOA, The COAL is slightly over the "Max" of 2.86 but it feeds just fine in my X-Bolt. I will never use this bullet. I highly dislike it. See article: 150 Gr. Accubond Long Range — Working Up Loads For My 270 WSM Rifles
130 Gr. Barnes Triple Shock 74.5 Grains, Accurate MagPro WLRM  2.80 28" 3400 fps Sub MOA
Same load as above with Model 70 24" 3275 fps Sub MOA
140 Gr. Nosler AccuBond 74 Grains, Accurate MagPro WLRM  2.787 28" 3460 fps Sub MOA
Same load as above with X-Bolt Stainless Stalker 23" 3330 fps Sub MOA.