Fifth in the series of Nosler cartridges based on the .404 Jeffery, the all-new .27 Nosler dares to touch on the hallowed ground occupied by the near-century-old .270 Winchester. Even Winchester’s own .270 WSM (Winchester Short Magnum) has had difficulty challenging the older cartridge, but the .27 Nosler comes with a different twist rate, and that may make a huge difference in the acceptance of the cartridge.
The traditional bullet weight for the .277-inch diameter bore has been between 90 and 150 grains, with some configurations of 160-grain bullets (usually round-nose or semi-spitzers) able to be stabilized. Though there is no denying the popularity of the .270 Winchester with this range of bullets, I've long thought it’d be better served by a faster twist rate than the 1:10ʺ used for the .270 Winchester.
The folks over at Nosler must’ve had the same thought process, as their new .27 Nosler features a 1:8.5ʺ twist rate in order to stabilize the longer and heavier bullets, further extending the weight range of bullets which may be used in the big case. Combining this faster twist rate with the added case capacity of the .404 Jeffery design, and the result is a cartridge capable of launching the high-BC heavy .277-inch bullets, with a velocity increase over the .270 WSM of 100 to 250 fps, depending on brand of ammo.
Nosler has shortened the datum line of the .27 (the distance from cartridge base to shoulder) and extended the neck length in order to prevent the larger .28 Nosler ammo from chambering in a .27 Nosler rifle. The company will be loading the 150-grain AccuBond and the 165-grain AccuBond Long Range bullets, both offering excellent trajectory, retained energy and terminal performance. To give an idea of the case capacity of the .27 Nosler, it will hold just over 98 grains of water, where the .270 Winchester holds 67 grains of water. Comparing 150-grain bullets, you’ll see a 400 fps advantage in the .27 Nosler (3250 fps vs. 2850 fps).
If the prospect of having a .277-inch bore diameter capable of sending the heavier, long-range bullets at a respectable velocity, the .27 Nosler may be just what you’re after. The entire family of Nosler cartridges has proven to be wonderfully accurate as well as hard hitting, and the .27 Nosler is no exception.