Copyright © 2020 Field & Stream. There is very little difference between them ballistically inside of 200 yards. The 7×64 Brenneke proves this, coming decades before Remington introduced its .280 Rem. However, since the .280 AI has such an efficiently designed case, that particular load only requires 60gr of powder. The introduction of the massively successful 7mm Remington Magnum in 1962 also derailed any prospects of the .280 Remington catching on to any large degree with the general hunting public. As you’ll see in a minute though, Remington didn’t give up on the .280. The Big Game Hunting Blog is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.ca, Amazon.com.au, and other Amazon stores worldwide. So in 1981 they changed the name back to the 280 Remington. First, the .270, .280, and .280 AI are all very similar in appearance: they have the same rim diameter as well as very similar case lengths. They are pretty much identical in ballistics. The relatively new .280 AI is nowhere near as common as the other two and at this point, only Nosler and Hornady make .280 Ackley Improved factory ammo. Remington made an attempt at knocking the .270 Winchester off its perch when they rolled out the .280 Remington cartridge in 1957. Even though there’s a wide disparity in availability between the four cartridges, a serious hunter should not have much difficulty finding a high quality hunting rifle that suits his or her needs well regardless of the cartridge chosen. Typical .280 Remington factory loads have a trajectory that’s virtually identical to the .270 Winchester. [Re: yotekyllr] White Eagle Die Hard Member III Registered: 02/26/02 Posts: 2878 Loc: The Dark Side 280 will better either the 270 or the 30-06 a fine round almost perfect if there is such a thing Many consider the .270 Winchester to be on the light side for elk and moose hunting, but especially when using heavy, premium quality bullets (like the Nosler Partition), it’s absolutely capable of getting the job done. .280 Remington vs .270 Winchester [edit | edit source] The .280 Remington is capable of generating slightly higher velocities with a given bullet weight than the .270 Winchester, and also able to use heavier bullets due to the larger .284" diameter. In this article, I’m going to do a detailed comparison of the 270 vs 280 Remington vs 280 Ackley Improved vs 7mm Remington Magnum in an effort to answer the above questions and parse out the differences between those four cartridges so you can make an informed decision regarding which one will work best for you. During many of those critical early years, the cartridge was only available in the Model 742 autoloader. Buy some great .280 Remington hunting ammo here. The 6 Best Big-Game Loads for the .308 Winchester, How to Hunt Ducks in a Winter Storm and Live to Tell About It, The Story Behind the World-Record Whitetail Deer, The Agony, and Utter Joy, of One Child’s First Fish, The 10 Best Long-Range Hunting Cartridges, Kansas Teenager Tags World-Record Whitetail Buck, How to Pick the Best All-Purpose Deer Rifle, Pro Fly-Tying Tips to Save Time and Fill Boxes. It’s also true that those .280 AI loads generally require a little less powder and thus produce less free recoil energy (all other things being the same). Interestingly enough, the .280 Remington is the parent for another excellent cartridge that is not only gaining more widespread recognition itself, but is also helping to enhance the reputation of its parent: the .280 Ackley Improved. Also, if you want to hunt something really big, like Alaska moose, you can use 175-grain bullets in the.280, while the top end for the.270 is 150 grains. Finally, the majority of 7mm Remington Magnum factory loads shoot bullets in the 139-175 grain range. Which is better? However, even though the cartridge closely approaches the overall performance of the 7mm Remington Magnum, the .280 AI still has somewhat less recoil since it requires less powder to achieve a similar level of performance. So Remington was again shooting itself in the foot with a downloaded cartridge. Even so, no animal will never know the difference if your shot is placed in the right spot. By design, the .280 competes with the .270 Winchester, yet hunters pass it by for the .270, the .30-06 Springfield, or the .280’s big brother, the 7mm Remington Magnum. Thanks to Jack O’Connor, the .270 Winchester is considered a classic sheep hunting cartridge if there ever was one. One area where the 280AI and .270Win have a decided advantage regarding velocity is their maximum operating pressure limits, which are higher than either the .280Rem or 7RemMag. With typical hunting factory loads, the 7mm Remington Magnum and the .280 Ackley Improved have a slight advantage over the others in this regard with a flatter trajectory and the most resistance to wind drift. Once again, the 7mm Remington Magnum has the least wind drift. Field & Stream may receive financial compensation for products purchased through this site. While the .280AI is an efficient cartridge; however, it’s not “magic”. Finally, bullet size is other big distinguishing factor between them. For example, when using the same weight bullet, .280 Ackley Improved factory ammunition typically shoots 50-150 (usually around 100 fps faster) than most .280 Remington factory ammo. The answer is that one fits in to a short action and the other gives you about an extra 100 to 150 FPS±. Since they can hold more powder, Ackley Improved cartridges are capable of higher velocities than their parent cartridge when loaded with the same weight bullet. It’s now possible to buy .280 AI brass (Nosler brass is a particularly good choice), but you can also make your own by fireforming .280 Remington brass. Since the .280, .280 AI, and 7mm Rem Mag use the very popular .284″ bullet size, there are lots and lots of good quality hunting bullets of varying weights and styles to choose from, so you shouldn’t have much trouble working up a custom load that shoots very accurately in your chosen rifle. It shoots flatter than the .30-06, so is probably an ideal compromise between the two, at least on game up to elk in size. The same goes for the 145gr .270 Winchester vs the 150gr .280 Remington load. This means I will earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you) if you make a purchase. The 7mm Remington Magnum comes next at 61,000psi and is followed by the .270 Winchester and .280 AI, which both have a maximum SAAMI pressure of 65,000psi. Had it been available in .280Rem I would have got that instead but it wasn’t/isn’t. Ackley Improved 40 degrees) hit something of a sweet spot between the .280 Remington and the 7mm Remington Magnum. You need to carefully analyze your potential needs and choose the one (270 vs 280 Remington vs 280 Ackley Improved vs 7mm Rem Mag) that you think will fit them best. If you’d like to learn how the .270 Winchester compares to its parent case in the .30-06, read the article below: 270 vs 30-06 Debate Settled Once And For All. Typically, a rifle magazine that can hold 4-5 .270 or .280 cartridges will only be able to hold 3 7mm Remington Magnum cartridges. However, the reduced body taper and sharper shoulder can sometimes cause feeding issues with certain rifles. The Nosler used a 24″ barrel for the .270 Winchester and 7mm Remington Magnum, but a 26″ barrel for the .280 Remington and .280 Ackley Improved in their published reloading data I used above. Latest. 5 Great Scout Rifles. If your a fan of lighter bullets and trajectory then 270 win has the edge. April 9, 2018. Some gun designers necked up the .30-06 to develop bigger cartridges like the 338-06 and the .35 Whelen. They eventually chose the bolt action 1903 Springfield rifle chambered in the new .30-06 Springfield cartridge. Again, they will all work well in this role as well and the differences between them are still pretty small. The .280 Remington is somewhat less common, but still pretty easy to find with Barnes, Federal, Hornady, Nosler, Remington, and Winchester all producing good quality .280 Remington hunting factory ammo. Additionally, it’s possible to safely (and often relatively accurately) fire .280 Remington ammo in a .280 AI rifle. 130 grain and 150 grain bullets are by far the most common. So where do we stand with each cartridge? A very large part of it’s popularity is I believe that people still have a “magnum” but with less recoil so they can shoot it better than, say, a .300Win mag. The .270 Winchester uses .277″ bullets while the .280 Remington, .280 Ackley Improved, and 7mm Remington Magnum all use slightly larger .284″ bullets. 11 Best Muzzleloaders For Hunters In 2020, Use A Thermacell To Stop Bug Bites While Hunting & Camping, 6.5 Creedmoor vs 243 Winchester Review & Comparison, 6.5 Creedmoor vs 7mm-08 Remington Review & Comparison, 6.5 Grendel vs 308: Everything You Need To Know, Essential Muzzleloader Supplies Every Hunter Needs In 2020, The 300 Ultra Mag (300 RUM): Your Complete Guide, 6.8 SPC vs 6.5 Grendel: What You Need To Know, 6.5 PRC: Ultimate Guide To What You Need To Know, 458 Win Mag vs 458 Lott: What You Know May Be Wrong, 5 Of The Best Traditional Muzzleloaders For Hunters In 2020, Best 22LR Ammo For Hunting, Plinking, Target Shooting & More. Also developed by necking down a .30-06 case, the .280 Remington offered hunters a slight ballistic edge over the .270 Winchester and also utilized the more popular .284″ bullets. The .270 Winchester also uses .277″ bullets while the .280 Remington, .280 AI, and 7mm Remington Magnum all use .284″ bullets. Which is better? The 280 used to be called the 7mm Express, but is now called the 280. I used Nosler’s own reloading data published online (available here, here, here, and here). The US Army started looking for a new service rifle and cartridge after being on the receiving end of a deadly demonstration of the capabilities of the revolutionary new Mauser rifle and 7mm Mauser cartridge in the hands of Spanish troops in Cuba during 1898. We put 3 popular cartridges to a head-to-head-to-head test If your a fan of heavier bullets the edge goes to the 280 rem. However, the fact that it’s still hanging around even after experiencing a bunch of marketing fumbles from corporate management is a testament to the inherent strengths of the .280 Remington. The only ammo you can buy for it will be labeled 280 Remington unless it's old stock. I have killed and been around a pile of animals killed with .270s and .280s as wet have a few in the family. Most hunters and shooters in North America are probably familiar with the venerable .270 Winchester and 7mm Remington Magnum cartridges. Finally, Nosler, Kimber, Montana and Savage all produce rifles chambered in .280 Ack Imp. The original .270 Winchester load shot a 130 grain bullet at a velocity of 3,140 feet per second (2,846 ft-lbs of energy). The chart below compares how much a 10 mile per hour crosswind impacts those same .270 Winchester, .280 Remington, .280 AI, and 7mm Remington Magnum loads out to 500 yards.As you can see, even though they have a very similar trajectory with both light and heavy for caliber bullets, the .280 Remington has a clear advantage over the .270 Winchester in terms of wind drift. #938051 - 03/19/08 07:58 PM Re: .280 Rem vs .308 Win ? Since they use larger diameter bullets, the .280 Rem, .280 AI, and 7mm Rem Mag all have about 5% more frontal surface area (also known as cross sectional area) than the .270 Winchester (.0633 vs .0603 square inches). As you can imagine though, the name change resulted in a lot of confusion between the 7mm Express and the 7mm Rem Mag, which are NOT interchangeable. 270 vs 308 WIN: WHICH ONE SHOULD YOU HUNT WITH? Guns. That being said, the .280 Remington, .280 AI, and 7mm Rem Mag are generally a little better suited for hunting bigger game. The .280 AI is similar, with 140 grain, 150 grain, and 162 grain bullets being the basically only choices at this time in factory ammo for the cartridge. performance and marketing success by unleashing its 280 in 1957, but they screwed it up. Some were reluctant to adopt the cartridge, but many American hunters eventually came to appreciate the flat shooting characteristics of the round as well as the fact that it was so effective on thin skinned game. Barrel length is another thing you should keep in mind. Buy some really dependable 7mm Remington Magnum hunting ammo here. So, Remington renamed the cartridge AGAIN after a few years and went back to the .280 Remington, which is what it’s called today. This is one of the most interesting points of comparison between the 7mm Rem Mag and .280 AI though. Take your pick. So, if it wasn’t bad enough that the management at Remington didn’t fully get behind the cartridge and offer it in a bolt-action rifle from the start, they also kept changing its name. From Guns and Gear® Season 4, Tom Gresham discusses the .280 Remington. Mule Deer Cartridge Showdown: .270 Win. By 2000, much of the popularity of the .280 Remington had once again waned. In both cases, the .270 Winchester has a slightly flatter trajectory, but the .280 Remington has a tiny bit more kinetic energy at all ranges (about 5-10% at 500 yards). Since it uses a much larger case diameter, most rifle magazines will hold more .270 Winchester, .280 Remington, or .280 AI cartridges than 7mm Remington Magnum cartridges. The .280 Remington and .280 Ackley Improved (especially the Ackley Improved) are both pretty good alternatives to hunters who want a little more powerful cartridge than the .270 Winchester, but with less recoil than cartridges like the the 7mm Remington Magnum and .300 Win Mag. Even so, the 7mm Remington Magnum can hold significantly more powder than the other three, which is due in large part to its larger diameter case. But such was not the case. I’m not aware of any rifles that are currently manufactured in all four cartridges, so in the interest of making as close to an “apples to apples” comparison as possible, I just decided to make the comparison with a hypothetical rifle that weighs exactly the same for each cartridge. They eventually got around to offering it in their legendary Model 700 bolt-action, but dropped it after a couple of years before finally reintroducing it in the Model 700 in 1979. The actual performance difference between Ackley Improved cartridges and their parents varies, with some realizing a much bigger jump in velocity than others. Are you looking for a great cartridge for sheep, mountain goat, or tahr hunting where you need a heavy hitting cartridge with manageable recoil in a lightweight and easy to carry rifle? First, they introduced the .280 Remington in their Model 740 autoloader. That also becomes an issue if you need to travel and can't bring live ammo, as you will need to buy it there. Remington made a massive splash in 1962 when they rolled out their new Remington Model 700 rifle along with the brand new 7mm Remington Magnum cartridge. The 7mm Rem Mag load above still has about 3% more free recoil energy than the faster .280 AI load. Later, they also offered it in their Model 742 autoloader and Model 760 slide action before finally offering it in the Model 721 and 725 bolt-action rifles. Remington tried to match Winchester’s 270 Win. Hunting. While there is a large amount of overlap in their capabilities, each one does offer certain advantages. The .280 is one of my ole favorites. So, does that mean the claim that the .280 Ackley Improved can do everything the 7mm Remington Magnum can do, but with less recoil is true? This undoubtedly has an impact on bullet velocities. This was due to a number of reasons, one of which was the fact that the .270 Winchester fired unusual size bullets. However the ballistic coefficient of equal weight bullets favors .270 caliber bullets over 7mm (.284) bullets of similar design. This is illustrated in the table below comparing Nosler Trophy Grade and Hornady Precision Hunter factory ammunition loaded with 130gr AccuBond (.435 BC) and 145gr ELD-X (.536 BC) bullets in .270 Winchester, 140gr AccuBond (.485 BC) and 150gr ELD-X (.574 BC) bullets in .280 Remington, 140gr AccuBond (.485 BC) and 162gr ELD-X (.631 BC) bullets in .280 AI, and 140gr AccuBond (.485 BC) and 162gr ELD-X (.631 BC) bullets in 7mm Rem Mag. Buy a really good .280 Remington hunting rifle here. The .280 Remington shoots about as flat as the .270 Winchester. Go with the .270 Winchester if you want the cheapest or easiest to find factory ammo or if you’re sensitive to recoil. Mag. Additionally, those smaller diameter .284″ bullets used by the 7mm Rem Mag have a higher ballistic coefficient and more sectional density than .30 caliber bullets of the same weight used by the .30-06 Springfield. While lots of hunters have readily adopted the 6.5 Creedmoor for hunting a wide variety of game, many other hunters remain skeptical of the suitability of the new cartridge for big game animals, particularly when its compared to the time tested .25-06 Remington and .270 Winchester cartridges. However, the 7mm Remington Magnum is still capable of greater velocities overall. Buy an excellent 7mm Remington Magnum hunting rifle here. At the 1,000-yard mark, we see around 26 inches less bullet drop, on average, for the .270 Win when compared to the 7mm-08 Remington. If ever a rifle cartridge could say the same thing, the .280 Remington is it. The .270 Winchester, .280 Remington, .280 Ackley Improved, and 7mm Remington Magnum are all great rifle cartridges. Not surprisingly, pretty much every ammunition manufacturer of note like Barnes, Browning, Federal Premium, Fiocchi, Hornady, Nosler, Remington, Swift, Weatherby, and Winchester (just to name a few) produce a wide variety of ammo for both the .270 Win and the 7mm Rem Mag. This was an incredibly high velocity for the 1920s and was a tremendous speed improvement over the .30-06 Springfield, which was itself considered a very high velocity cartridge for the day. This very likely hampered adoption of the cartridge to a certain degree. Based on its .284-inch bullets and ballistic potential, the 280 Remington should have been an overnight success. Any modern, strong bolt-action that can handle a 30-06, 270 Win., 25-06 Rem. Why did the .280 Remington struggle to initially gain traction in the commercial shooting and hunting market? Basically, it can hold more powder and thus can shoot the same weight bullet a little bit faster. I’d wager that the .270 Winchester is a little more commonly used than the 7mm Rem Mag. I have a custom .280 Remington. Reactions: Gb300wm, DHuffman and Mulligan. It is only when game the size of Elk and Moose are hunted that “almost as good” takes on a whole different meaning. Are you a handloader? Others opted to neck down the .30-06 case to use smaller diameter bullets (like the .25-06 Remington), which is what the folks at Winchester did when they modified the case to use .277″ instead of .308″ bullets. Furthermore, shot placement and bullet construction / weight is far more important than choice of caliber. The .280 Remington is currently manufactured by Browning, Remington, and Winchester in their X-Bolt, Model 700, and Model 70 rifles. If not, then you should probably stay away from the .280 Ackley Improved (unless you’re fine with just 1-2 brands as factory ammo options) and go with either the .270 or the 7mm Mag. Before we get started, I have an administrative note: Some of the links below are affiliate links. This comes at the expense of more recoil though. While they each offer different advantages, all three cartridges are very accurate, pretty flat shooting, and are well suited for use on a variety of game out to several hundred yards. Here’s one last thing to consider when comparing these cartridges: magazine capacity. That’s absolutely true. The .280 Remington is capable of generating slightly higher velocities in heavier bullet weights (150 grains and above) than the .270 Winchester due to a marginally greater case capacity. This is an area where the .280 AI really shines because it has a similar or slightly superior trajectory and resistance to wind drift when compared to the 7mm Remington Magnum, but less recoil in a lightweight mountain rifle that’s easy to carry in rough country. The result was a new case with slightly more (usually around 4-5%) powder capacity. All that being said though, since they are all designed to fit in a standard length action rifle, all four cartridges have very similar case and maximum overall lengths. With the ballistic benefits of the 7mm bullet, and case capacity allowing almost identical stats to the .280 Rem, the 7×64 is a convenient stopgap between calibres based on the .308 Win and the heavier recoiling magnums. The data used to compare the trajectory and wind drift of the cartridges was obtained from Hornady (here, here, here and here) and Nosler (here). Great article and comparison of similar cartridges. It’s followed closely by the .280 Ackley Improved and there is a slightly larger gap between the .280 AI and the .280 Remington. Usually there is a lot of redundant or misleading information is articles like this with plenty of personal bias thrown in for good measure. I think most shooters would agree that the 6.5 Creedmoor is a fantastic cartridge for competition shooting. It didn’t take very long before the .270 Winchester was firmly entrenched as one of the most popular hunting cartridges used in the United States. The .280 Rem and .30-06 are slightly more (about 21 foot pounds); the .270 WSM, 7mm Rem Mag and .300 Win Mag are noticeably more (26 to 31 foot pounds); the .338 Win Mag is still greater (36 foot pounds); while the .300 and .338 Remington Ultra Mags are far greater (51 to 54 foot pounds). On the other hand, the .280 Remington is normally offered with 139 grain, 140 grain, or 150 grain bullets, but it’s possible to find a few loads with 156 grain, 160 grain, and 165 grain bullets as well. All eight loads used a 200 yard zero.Interestingly, the 130 grain .270 load has an almost identical trajectory to the .280 Remington 140 grain Accubond load. In 1995 I bought a Model 700 Mountain Rifle chambered in .280 Remington. For this reason, the .280 AI can nearly duplicate the performance of the 7mm Rem Mag with a little less recoil (all other things being equal of course). Over these years it has become my absolute favorite cartridge. In the heavier bullets (150 grains and above) of similar design the .280 Remington has a slight edge in muzzle energy. The .280 AI was developed by modifying the case from the .280 Remington. Buy a great 280 Ackley Improved hunting rifle here. Though dimensionally identical to (and thus completely interchangeable with) the original .280 Remington, Remington claimed the new 7mm Express loads had a tiny velocity advantage over the original .280 Remington factory loads when using the same weight bullet. For those reasons, most 7mm Remington Magnum loads have more energy remaining downrange, a flatter trajectory, and (all other things being equal) will penetrate better than .30-06 Springfield loads using the same weight bullets. 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