Today was sight in day at our local range, and, I just happened to have put together some Elk fodder for the Marlin XL7. Now, 270 Winchesters are known for fine accurate and for being pretty picky when it comes to what you feed them. The brand doesn’t seem to matter, you just have to hunt for the right load combination and or factory ammunition. Which can get pretty expensive.
To add to the confusion, brands that you think would match up sometimes don’t really function all that well. I’ve owned several Remington rifles, and, for an example; none of them shot Remington ammunition worth a hoot! They all shot extremely well using Federal products though.
My Marlin has been not to kind to Nosler bullets, which I happen to really like. But Sierra? They all seem to shoot like a dream. Since I don’t have a lot of time to work up an Elk load, I popped open the Sierra loading manual, and had a go at it. Please note that what follows is safe in my rifle, but may not be in yours. Work up loads cautiously, and never exceed maximum loads. Also, this was not really a reloading situation, as this was new unfired Remington brass.
Components are as follows. Brass, as noted above, was new unfired Remington, fully prepped including deburring the flash holes, and sizing the primer pockets. Cases were full length sized using an RCBS X-Die.
My particular rifle has a history of shooting better with the hotter loads, but I also had not tried any 150 grain bullets in it yet, so I stuck with the book recommendations. The best accuracy load was listed at 53.7 grains of powder, with the hunting load at 55.2 grains. I used Remington Core-Lokt 150 grain ammunition as a control.
The range was pretty crowded with people waiting for a shooting station, so this had to be brief. Allowing the barrel to completely cool just was not possible.
Range, 100 yards for all loads, with the temperature in the upper 70′s and the humidity was right around 50 percent according to The Weather Channel. Winds were variable, but nothing really serious, maybe an occasional gust at 10 mph. All shots were from a bench using rests, and I had the luxury of a spotter this day.
Control group: 5 rounds of Remington Core-Lokt 150 grain. After a fouling round had been shot. 1.5 inches.
The lighter Accuracy recommended load of 53.7 grains of R 22 powder came in at just under 1 inch.
The heavier charge , same bullet and powder. Came in at 1/2 inch! I am sighted three inches high at one hundred yards, and should be able to shoot using no adjustment out to 250 yards.
That friends, is minute of Elk, and then some!