Originally Posted by sheep dog
The issue is that when I look up the ballistic chart for remington on all 3 calibers and read the energy and velocity on paper all three are pretty darn close. The 300 and 300wsm shooting a 180 siracoco is reported to have 1762 and 1790 fpe with the 270wsm having 1748 shooting a 150 gr premier accutip. All of these are for 500yards.
1762, 1790 and 1748 all seem pretty close and if that means that they are then the 270wsm would be the ticket with a lighter overall rifle and less recoil. So am I understanding this right? does the mass of the round play more of an role once its inside the animal with a higher Ke to do the job or are they really all this close that it matters not?
KE can be a deceptive terminal performance indicator and I shy away from it other than a ball park reference. In determining KE, the velocity is squared and then multiplied by mass over 2, placing a lot greater emphasis on velocity than mass.
It does not take into account the amount of destruction caused by the actual size of the bullet and the permanent wound channel it leaves behind and doesn't give an accurate picture of the bullet's ability to smash bone and penetrate deeply. Momentum is a much better indicator of penetration potential.
For example, would you rather shoot a cape buff with a 50 gr 22 cal bullet with a velocity of 6000 fps (exaggeration) and a KE of 4000 or with a 350 gr 375 cal bullet with a velocity of 2200 fps and a KE of 3700? The 50 gr 22 cal bullet is the obvious choice right?
Not trying to talk you out of the 270. It should do fine to the distances you are talking about, but the 300's will cause more tissue destruction on the elk and smash and penetrate heavy bone better (if needed) when using heavy for cal bullets.
That said, if this was going to be my once- in-a-while elk rifle and mostly used for deer and hogs, I might pick the 270 also... but on the other hand, that's why I have more than one rifle