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Discussion Starter #1
For the last two years in a row I think I've killed more groundhogs with a .17HMR than all of my centerfires put together. Most of this is short range - between 35 and 125 yards and strictly nuisance control work. There is no shortage of groundhogs where I live. I've shot them out of small trees, in flower gardens, fence rows, around barn foundations, and of course in hayfields. I've found the .17HMR to be perfect for this kind of work. They drop on the spot and I rarely get a bullet exit with the Federal ammo I've been using. This pic is of one that I killed early in the season.


Same 'hog viewed from the side with the headline; Hummer Hazardous to Health.


I save the centerfires for longer ranges in hayfields farther away from people. I'm using mostly a semi-custom 17MachIV these days.


One of the things I like best about the .17's is being able to see the bullet impact through the scope. Makes for a good show and provides self-spotting capability.
 

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17 HMR effective range ?

How far can you reliably kill them with the 17 HMR ?

I've killed lots of PDs wiitht the HMR but have wondered about the job it would do on the larger groundhogs.

Thanks.

A. Weldy
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Gotta have good placement

How far can you reliably kill them with the 17 HMR ?

A. Weldy
The .17HMR will kill them reliably at 125 yards and probably a little farther if you can be sure of your shot placement. You can't shoot them going away, or anywhere posterior to the solar plexis/sternum area and expect good results, but on any well-placed head/neck/vital zone shot, they're DRT.
 

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Theo, how about some details on the rifle in your pic? Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The rifle in the pic above is a trued Rem 700 with a 24" Lothar Walther barrel. I shoot 25 grainers at 3850 and 20 grainers close to 4200. It's been my favorite groundhog rifle since I had it made about five years ago.
 

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theo,

thx for sharing as the 17's truly are addictive. i have 6 different custom 17's and am always thinking of adding more to my safe. you should look into a 17 ackley hornet as you may never shoot the MK4 again, seriously !!

cb <*)))>{
 

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hmmmmm

I did not know Lothar Walther made 17 calibre barrels....hmmmm ..the wheels are a turning...he he ..Eric
 

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barrel twist

Theo.... what rifling twist on your .17 m 4 barrel..and are the 20 gr bullets as accurate as the 25 gr...thanks.. Eric
 

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hummer hogs



i know what you mean. tough to get away from houses and people.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Twist rate & bullets

Theo.... what rifling twist on your .17 m 4 barrel..and are the 20 gr bullets as accurate as the 25 gr...thanks.. Eric
My barrel is a 10" twist and it does fine with all of the 25 grain bullets. I have not tried any 30 grainers in it, but I understand that some 10" twist barrels will stablize 30's as well. My favorite all time bullet was the 25 grain Starke. When I ran out of those, I switched over to the 25 grain Berger Match.

I've also shot quite a few 20 grain VMaxes and 20 grain Berger Match bullets. They both do very well on groundhogs and zip along at nearly 4200 fps. My longest shot to date with the 17MachIV was 230 honest paces using a 20 gr. VMax. That 'hog dropped on the spot. I think to shoot the lighter bullets effectively you have to have a little higher magnification on your scope to enable good shot placement. I crank up to 16X for the longer shots and put them right in the vital zone.

The only bullet I've been disappointed with is the 25 grain Hornady HP. It doesn't shoot well in my rifle and doesn't expand well on-target.

Here's a link to my rudimentary web site with a few more pics of the 17MachIV:
http://dakotadreamin.homestead.com/page1.html
 
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