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#12139053 - 07/10/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Sitka deer]  
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Originally Posted by smokepole

Once again, bullets and animals. Bullets impart their energy in a small area over milliseconds.
The question is, in that context is "kinetic energy" a good yardstick....


Energy is like S.D. its not wise to generalise with either.

Sitka Deers BG with 80grain mono SD .173 with about 1200 ft/lb.
is far from the minimums typically recommended by old school trains of thought.
If he had told 24cf readers they was planning to hunt moose with such projectile,
he would have been shot down by some.

TYPE of projectile can have significant effect on where energy is spent inside an animal,
and effect how much minimum energy is required for lethality. Its possible to spend less
KE and achieve superior performance.

The amount of KE in bowhunting demonstrates how little KE is needed if you select the
correct projectile... wink ..tests by Ashby are valuable reading.( abbreviated)


"Longbow 788 grain compressed cedar arrow, 190 grain Grizzly broadhead, at 148 fps 38 ft.lbs KE
was used to repeatedly shoot through the scapula of a large zebra stallion and through the thorax to the off side, often
breaking off-side ribs (never failing to penetrate the scapula and completely through the thorax). ......
compared to:
Compound 555 grain aluminum shafted Black Diamond This combination gives 229fps 65 ft.lbs. KE,
penetrate only 5 to 8 inched beyond the scapula, and occasionally failed to penetrate the scapula at all on that same
zebra carcass......next,
Compound 450 grain carbon arrow - three blade head, vel. 259fps 76 ft.lbs. KE ,unable to penetrate the zebra scapula."


Its a cruel world, but it operates within a benevolent universe.
AIH 300 BP 2
#12139238 - 07/10/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Sitka deer]  
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Originally Posted by Sitka deer
Originally Posted by Owl
My .338 Win Mag has LESS recoil than my .300 Weatherby.


Denying simple physics is not a good idea.


I don't know Owl, but will draw a little heat away from him anyway. wink

I've got one .300Win and one .338Win. It's an apples to oranges comparison that should favor the .300 for lighter recoil but that's simply not the case.

My .300Win is a Ruger #1B with a 20yr old Burris 6-18X. Burris didn't know how to make light scopes back then (maybe the still don't?), and the whole rifle weighs a lot. I tried packing around the alpine country for two seasons then wised up. I forgot the weight, and it's in the back row of the safe right now.

My .338Win is a much lighter Ruger MkII with a much lighter Burris 3-9x from about 10yrs ago. Again, sitting in the back row right next to the .300 (I know there's a pattern here).

My .300Win load is a 180gr BTs over enough H4831SC to reach an accurate 3100fps.............and easily accomplished.

My .338Win load is a 225gr NPT over enough H4350 to make 2900fps on the nose. And yes, I realize that's a lot higher than normal, so I'm lucky or that pound of powder had fairly dust in it or something.

Anyway, not being a mathlete, I can't calculate whatever energies need to be compared to make sense of this, but my much heavier .300Win shooting a lighter bullet (albeit faster by 200fps) kicks like a miserable SOB (hence it's sitting in the back row), while the ligher .338Win shooting a heavier bullet with a faster powder isn't miserable at all. And honestly I had to talk myself down from a flinch before taking that first shot with the .338 because I'd heard all the complaining about recoil, and was sure I was about to receive a beating. Both are equipped with OEM Ruger tank track pads.

Please feel free to explain this for me, because it's been a head-scratcher for years. All I've come up with is the Ruger#1 is somehow a "bad design" for felt recoil, and/or the muzzle velocity factors higher than rifle and bullet weight. A friend of mine owned two #1 .300Wins and both of them ate scopes and kick like a bastid, so I know it's not just me. He sold one and rebarreled the other to a heavier contour for more weight.

Stepping away from the recoil and energy discussion for a second, I'll mention one REAL difference between the .300's and the .338...............and that's bullet price and availability. If the two cartridges are too similar to tell a difference in the field, I'd pick .30cal simply for the economics.


Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
--Winston Churchill
#12139282 - 07/10/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: handwerk]  
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Originally Posted by handwerk
I've enjoyed my synthetic stocked 300 H&H for years now, been a great elk gun. I load 180 TTSX's to 3050 fps. 2 years a go I found a deal on another like stocked pre 64 M70 in 338, I bought it and loaded up some 225's, although it shot great , I came to find out that I had crossed the line when it comes to how much recoil I can handle well, so I sold it. No doubt the .338 is a great round, but I'll get by ok with my 300 H&H, for me the 338 was too much of a good thing.


I had the same experience with a Browning Safari Grade in 338 WM and a Ruger M77 Mk II in a Bell & Carlson stock. The recoil is not as bad as the urban legends imply, but it's still substantial. The Browning weighed 9 pounds scoped. When I carried it, I wanted it to be a pound lighter. When I shot it, I wanted it to be a pound heavier. The Ruger was lighter but the more modern stock design handled recoil better. I killed one elk with the Browning, breaking its spine at 110 yards. I could have done that with a 30-06. Or a 30-30.


Okie John

#12139308 - 07/10/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Coyote_Hunter]  
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E of the Rockies, W of the res...
Originally Posted by Coyote_Hunter
Originally Posted by bellydeep
300 WBY is the best elk cartridge around. Even Coyote Hunter know it.


It's a good choice. Best? Not as far as I'm concerned. YMMV.



There's nothing better.


Originally Posted by shrapnel
I probably hit more elk with a pickup than you have with a rifle.


Originally Posted by George Costanza
I base my whole life on knowing that the D is the biggest.
#12139740 - 07/11/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: 222Rem]  
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Sitka deer Offline
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Originally Posted by 222Rem
Originally Posted by Sitka deer
Originally Posted by Owl
My .338 Win Mag has LESS recoil than my .300 Weatherby.


Denying simple physics is not a good idea.


I don't know Owl, but will draw a little heat away from him anyway. wink

I've got one .300Win and one .338Win. It's an apples to oranges comparison that should favor the .300 for lighter recoil but that's simply not the case.

My .300Win is a Ruger #1B with a 20yr old Burris 6-18X. Burris didn't know how to make light scopes back then (maybe the still don't?), and the whole rifle weighs a lot. I tried packing around the alpine country for two seasons then wised up. I forgot the weight, and it's in the back row of the safe right now.

My .338Win is a much lighter Ruger MkII with a much lighter Burris 3-9x from about 10yrs ago. Again, sitting in the back row right next to the .300 (I know there's a pattern here).

My .300Win load is a 180gr BTs over enough H4831SC to reach an accurate 3100fps.............and easily accomplished.

My .338Win load is a 225gr NPT over enough H4350 to make 2900fps on the nose. And yes, I realize that's a lot higher than normal, so I'm lucky or that pound of powder had fairly dust in it or something.

Anyway, not being a mathlete, I can't calculate whatever energies need to be compared to make sense of this, but my much heavier .300Win shooting a lighter bullet (albeit faster by 200fps) kicks like a miserable SOB (hence it's sitting in the back row), while the ligher .338Win shooting a heavier bullet with a faster powder isn't miserable at all. And honestly I had to talk myself down from a flinch before taking that first shot with the .338 because I'd heard all the complaining about recoil, and was sure I was about to receive a beating. Both are equipped with OEM Ruger tank track pads.

Please feel free to explain this for me, because it's been a head-scratcher for years. All I've come up with is the Ruger#1 is somehow a "bad design" for felt recoil, and/or the muzzle velocity factors higher than rifle and bullet weight. A friend of mine owned two #1 .300Wins and both of them ate scopes and kick like a bastid, so I know it's not just me. He sold one and rebarreled the other to a heavier contour for more weight.

Stepping away from the recoil and energy discussion for a second, I'll mention one REAL difference between the .300's and the .338...............and that's bullet price and availability. If the two cartridges are too similar to tell a difference in the field, I'd pick .30cal simply for the economics.



Stock shape is a huge factor in felt recoil... just as shooting posture and the weight of the shooter contribute heavily, pun intended. But you cannot change the basic facts that Physics insists on. Sitting up straighter and riding with the recoil is better than hunching over and stopping the movement. Stocks with a little bit of cast allow the gun to move away from the face and greatly reduce felt recoil. None of that changes actual recoil.

Now when someone starts talking crazy numbers and saying things like a lighter rifle shooting a much heavier bullet at nearly similar speeds kicks less than a smaller bullet in a heavier rifle you have to accept the unwritten. The shooters interpretation leaves out the fact they expect Physics to reign "and it really wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. "


Mark Begich, Joaquin Jackson, and Heller resistance... Three huge reasons to worry about the NRA.
#12139966 - 07/11/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Sitka deer]  
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Both rifles had the loads worked up and zeroed off a bench, so the posture was same/same...........and ideal for maximizing the felt recoil. Both rifles "feel" llike they're coming straight back, and neither bites me in the cheek bone.

My best guess is the increased muzzle velocity also causes proportionate recoil velocity, and that's what creates the painful bite. My .338 is more of a heavy push (which mathematically might be heavier than the .300's numbers), but is spread out over enough milliseconds to not hurt, while the .300Win gets recoils so quickly that my body takes a full hit rather than recoiling with the rifle.

I know that mathematics always tells the truth, so I don't doubt the lighter .338, shooting a heavier bullet is technically the "heavier recoiler" on paper. But the perceived "recoil curve" is very tolerable, while the heavier gun/lighter bullet .300Win isn't. And Ruger's idea of a recoil pad does a fine job of staying out of the equation altogether. Someday I'll buy a Simms slip-on for my .300, and give it another try.


Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
--Winston Churchill
#12140032 - 07/11/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: 222Rem]  
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Originally Posted by 222Rem
Both rifles had the loads worked up and zeroed off a bench, so the posture was same/same...........and ideal for maximizing the felt recoil. Both rifles "feel" llike they're coming straight back, and neither bites me in the cheek bone.

My best guess is the increased muzzle velocity also causes proportionate recoil velocity, and that's what creates the painful bite. My .338 is more of a heavy push (which mathematically might be heavier than the .300's numbers), but is spread out over enough milliseconds to not hurt, while the .300Win gets recoils so quickly that my body takes a full hit rather than recoiling with the rifle.

I know that mathematics always tells the truth, so I don't doubt the lighter .338, shooting a heavier bullet is technically the "heavier recoiler" on paper. But the perceived "recoil curve" is very tolerable, while the heavier gun/lighter bullet .300Win isn't. And Ruger's idea of a recoil pad does a fine job of staying out of the equation altogether. Someday I'll buy a Simms slip-on for my .300, and give it another try.


I would certainly agree that the .338 seems to push while the .300 magnums seem to hit much more quickly. So much so I rarely use mine.

I did just buy a .300 Weatherby M-70 push feed and except for a Limb saver pad and bedding it is pretty stock. It doesn't seem to recoil as bad as the .338 when loaded with 180's. I hope it stays that way when I get a 200 grain load worked up. I really like the way 200 grain .308 Noslers perform on game.

#12141380 - 07/12/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Jamesd1187]  
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For me the math is easy, Two Ruger MKII rifles, one in .300WM, the other in .338WM. Both have Zytel .with boat paddle stocks. Have not weighed the rifles but assume about 8.3 pounds with scope.

300WM = 180g @ 3033fps using 70.0g powder, calculated recoil = 29.2 ft-lbs
338WM = 225g @ 2742fps using 69.0g powder, calculated recoil = 33.8 ft-lbs

"Shoulder math" concurs with the calculated recoil - the .338WM hits harder, and noticeably so.


Coyote Hunter - NRA Endowment Life, NRA Whittington Center Life, GOA, DAD - and I VOTE!

No, I'm not a Ruger bigot - just an unabashed fan of their revolvers, M77's and #1's.
#12141538 - 07/12/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Coyote_Hunter]  
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I have had some interesting experiences with 300 win, 300wby and 338 win.

Mark V chambered in 300 wby had serious recoil. SS Fluted barrel Synthetic stock model 180 grain Factory Ammo

Salvage 110 in 300 win mag felt even worse then the Mark V Wood stocked 110 180 grain Factory Ammo

Weatherby VAnguard deluxe 300 wby absolutely sweet shooting --recoil is not an issue 180 grain Factory Ammo

RUger M77 338 wood stock --recoil more of a push then a shove - quite docile 225 Remington Factory Ammo


I would like to try out a 340 weatherby but would have to make a custom vanguard deluxe to get that , think the Mark V would have more felt recoil.


Obama’s microphone was on during the exchange where he told Medvedev that “This is my last election. After my election I have more flexibility.”
Medvedev responded: “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir [Putin].”

#12141540 - 07/12/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: bellydeep]  
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Originally Posted by bellydeep
Originally Posted by Coyote_Hunter
Originally Posted by bellydeep
300 WBY is the best elk cartridge around. Even Coyote Hunter know it.


It's a good choice. Best? Not as far as I'm concerned. YMMV.



There's nothing better.


That is one tough round to beat I concur


Obama’s microphone was on during the exchange where he told Medvedev that “This is my last election. After my election I have more flexibility.”
Medvedev responded: “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir [Putin].”

#12142305 - 07/12/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Oldelkhunter]  
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Originally Posted by Oldelkhunter
I have had some interesting experiences with 300 win, 300wby and 338 win.

Mark V chambered in 300 wby had serious recoil. SS Fluted barrel Synthetic stock model 180 grain Factory Ammo

Salvage 110 in 300 win mag felt even worse then the Mark V Wood stocked 110 180 grain Factory Ammo

Weatherby VAnguard deluxe 300 wby absolutely sweet shooting --recoil is not an issue 180 grain Factory Ammo

RUger M77 338 wood stock --recoil more of a push then a shove - quite docile 225 Remington Factory Ammo


I would like to try out a 340 weatherby but would have to make a custom vanguard deluxe to get that , think the Mark V would have more felt recoil.

I have fixed several brutal-recoiling Savages with a simple pad change...


Mark Begich, Joaquin Jackson, and Heller resistance... Three huge reasons to worry about the NRA.
#12142551 - 07/12/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Sitka deer]  
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Originally Posted by Sitka deer
Originally Posted by Oldelkhunter
I have had some interesting experiences with 300 win, 300wby and 338 win.

Mark V chambered in 300 wby had serious recoil. SS Fluted barrel Synthetic stock model 180 grain Factory Ammo

Salvage 110 in 300 win mag felt even worse then the Mark V Wood stocked 110 180 grain Factory Ammo

Weatherby VAnguard deluxe 300 wby absolutely sweet shooting --recoil is not an issue 180 grain Factory Ammo

RUger M77 338 wood stock --recoil more of a push then a shove - quite docile 225 Remington Factory Ammo


I would like to try out a 340 weatherby but would have to make a custom vanguard deluxe to get that , think the Mark V would have more felt recoil.

I have fixed several brutal-recoiling Savages with a simple pad change...


Worst recoiling rifle I have ever owned and it had a 1" recoil pad.


Obama’s microphone was on during the exchange where he told Medvedev that “This is my last election. After my election I have more flexibility.”
Medvedev responded: “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir [Putin].”

#12142571 - 07/12/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Oldelkhunter]  
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Sitka deer Offline
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Originally Posted by Oldelkhunter
Originally Posted by Sitka deer
Originally Posted by Oldelkhunter
I have had some interesting experiences with 300 win, 300wby and 338 win.

Mark V chambered in 300 wby had serious recoil. SS Fluted barrel Synthetic stock model 180 grain Factory Ammo

Salvage 110 in 300 win mag felt even worse then the Mark V Wood stocked 110 180 grain Factory Ammo

Weatherby VAnguard deluxe 300 wby absolutely sweet shooting --recoil is not an issue 180 grain Factory Ammo

RUger M77 338 wood stock --recoil more of a push then a shove - quite docile 225 Remington Factory Ammo


I would like to try out a 340 weatherby but would have to make a custom vanguard deluxe to get that , think the Mark V would have more felt recoil.

I have fixed several brutal-recoiling Savages with a simple pad change...


Worst recoiling rifle I have ever owned and it had a 1" recoil pad.

And I have spent a bit of time looking at that very stock to see what can be done to avoid every aspect of its design!


Mark Begich, Joaquin Jackson, and Heller resistance... Three huge reasons to worry about the NRA.
#12142702 - 07/12/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Sitka deer]  
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Originally Posted by Sitka deer
Originally Posted by Oldelkhunter
Originally Posted by Sitka deer
Originally Posted by Oldelkhunter
I have had some interesting experiences with 300 win, 300wby and 338 win.

Mark V chambered in 300 wby had serious recoil. SS Fluted barrel Synthetic stock model 180 grain Factory Ammo

Salvage 110 in 300 win mag felt even worse then the Mark V Wood stocked 110 180 grain Factory Ammo

Weatherby VAnguard deluxe 300 wby absolutely sweet shooting --recoil is not an issue 180 grain Factory Ammo

RUger M77 338 wood stock --recoil more of a push then a shove - quite docile 225 Remington Factory Ammo


I would like to try out a 340 weatherby but would have to make a custom vanguard deluxe to get that , think the Mark V would have more felt recoil.

I have fixed several brutal-recoiling Savages with a simple pad change...


Worst recoiling rifle I have ever owned and it had a 1" recoil pad.

And I have spent a bit of time looking at that very stock to see what can be done to avoid every aspect of its design!


Do you always have to get the last word in ? I had a pretty darn good smith look at it as well. Had I held on to it I was putting another stock on it. I don't own it anymore so your input matters not one iota. Only mine matters since I owned it and shot it . I sure has hell would not have shipped it to Alaska so you could work on it.

Last edited by Oldelkhunter; 07/13/17.

Obama’s microphone was on during the exchange where he told Medvedev that “This is my last election. After my election I have more flexibility.”
Medvedev responded: “I understand. I will transmit this information to Vladimir [Putin].”

#12143795 - 07/13/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Jamesd1187]  
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Sitka deer Offline
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How in the Hell did you get the idea I was suggesting anything even remotely like that???

My reason in looking at it was to see what aspects of the design contributed so strongly to poor recoil handling... for building other stocks!


Mark Begich, Joaquin Jackson, and Heller resistance... Three huge reasons to worry about the NRA.
#12143974 - 07/13/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: 222Rem]  
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Originally Posted by 222Rem
My best guess is the increased muzzle velocity also causes proportionate recoil velocity, and that's what creates the painful bite. My .338 is more of a heavy push (which mathematically might be heavier than the .300's numbers), but is spread out over enough milliseconds to not hurt, while the .300Win gets recoils so quickly that my body takes a full hit rather than recoiling with the rifle.

I was just reading The Hunter's Guide to Accurate Shooting by Wayne Van Zwoll last night and he addresses this situation directly.

From The Hunter's Guide to Accurate Shooting:
Quote
Felt recoil can vary significantly among rifles delivering the same recoil in foot-pounds ... Slap is my homespun term for what happens during quick recoil. Plainly put, a bullet that exits fast dumps all its energy fast, too. The rifle seems to slap you instead of shoving you. Pile enough foot-pounds behind that slap, and it becomes a punch.

So a better comparison would be to drive those bullets at the same velocity. Some might say drive bullets of equal weight, and I suppose that's one way to do it, but the .308 180 vs a .338 225 have very similar sectional densities, which I think makes for a better comparison. I don't see any load data where the 225 gr bullet in.338 Win Mag can be driven as fast as your .300 Win Mag. Perhaps a better comparison for the recoil would be with the .340 Weatherby or .338 RUM, or download the .300 to the same velocity and then decide. Of course, the rifles and their weights you have on hand are still different which mucks things up a bit.


#12144119 - 07/13/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Gringo Loco]  
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Well said, Gringo. I've also surmised the only way to really contrast cartridges is to look at the bullet weights that each can send at similar velocities.

#12144720 - 07/13/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Jamesd1187]  
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Originally Posted by 222Rem
My best guess is the increased muzzle velocity also causes proportionate recoil velocity, and that's what creates the painful bite.
My .338 is more of a heavy push (which mathematically might be heavier than the .300's numbers), but is spread out over enough milliseconds to not hurt,
while the .300Win gets recoils so quickly that my body takes a full hit rather than recoiling with the rifle.


Recoil Vel. is higher with 225gn 338win than 300win 180gn. I performed various calcs using a range of typical powder charges for each,
including the heaviest charge weights for both cartridges from Nosler data. (75gn for .338 and 81gn for .300win)

One is effectively applying a higher level of whats technically called "Tamping" of an explosive charge when loading with a heavier projectile.
Increased tamping even on a lower charge can produce more redirection of HE/HV force than lighter tamping of a heavier explosive charge.

Cases, primers,chambers, bolts and barrels are also forms of mechanical tamping, as they are designed to contain and re-direct blast force.
then you carefully complete the tamp process by capping with a projectile.. if against the lands you may be dangerously tamping too much!!.. grin

Anyone here who has trained with setting up various forms of demolition charges will understand what I mean.


Its a cruel world, but it operates within a benevolent universe.
#12145917 - 07/14/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: akmtnrunner]  
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Originally Posted by akmtnrunner
Well said, Gringo. I've also surmised the only way to really contrast cartridges is to look at the bullet weights that each can send at similar velocities.


My choice is to compare loads I actually use, as I did here:

https://www.24hourcampfire.com/ubbt...141380/re-300-magnum-vs-338#Post12141380

The primary difference between the two rifles (.338WM and .300WM) is the .338 has a Limbsaver recoil pad while the .300WM has the Ruger tire tread pad. THe .338WM still hits much harder than the .300WM.


Coyote Hunter - NRA Endowment Life, NRA Whittington Center Life, GOA, DAD - and I VOTE!

No, I'm not a Ruger bigot - just an unabashed fan of their revolvers, M77's and #1's.
#12151177 - 07/17/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Coyote_Hunter]  
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Originally Posted by Coyote_Hunter
For me the math is easy, Two Ruger MKII rifles, one in .300WM, the other in .338WM. Both have Zytel .with boat paddle stocks. Have not weighed the rifles but assume about 8.3 pounds with scope.

300WM = 180g @ 3033fps using 70.0g powder, calculated recoil = 29.2 ft-lbs
338WM = 225g @ 2742fps using 69.0g powder, calculated recoil = 33.8 ft-lbs

"Shoulder math" concurs with the calculated recoil - the .338WM hits harder, and noticeably so.


Here are some similar calculations made on JBM ballistics software:

Assume a .300 WM and a .338, both in 9 lb. rifles.
.300 WM = 180 gr., 69 gr. powder, 3100 fps MV, - Recoil velocity 14.0 ft/sec., Recoil energy 27.4 ft.lbs., Recoil impulse 3.9 lb/sec.

.338 WM = 225 gr., 70 gr. powder, 2850 fps MV- Recoil velocity 15.4 ft/sec., Recoil energy 32.2 ft. lbs., Recoil impulse 4.3 lb/sec.

The .338 in these identical weight rifles has more recoil, and does so at a higher recoil velocity, than the .300- so much for the theory that the .338's recoil is more of a 'push'. It is not.
It boils down to stock design, how the rifle fits the shooter, recoil pads, etc. that factor in to the subjective nature of felt recoil. One of the hardest 'kicking' rifles I have ever shot belongs to my daughter in law- it is a Savage .270, shooting factory 130 gr. ammo.


I'd rather be a free man in my grave, than living as a puppet or a slave....
#12151815 - 07/17/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: JustinL1]  
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 16,467
las Offline
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las  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 16,467
Kotzebue, AK
Originally Posted by JustinL1
I'm curious about this myself...I hunt with a .300 Winchester, killed white tails, mule deer, and an elk with it...but bought a .338 for elk/moose. The .338 I bought didn't give me the accuracy I wanted, so I just continued using the .300, but I still have an itch for a .338, even though from what I've read, you really can't tell the difference between the 2 on game.

So- can anyone here tell the difference on elk/moose/bear with the .300 vs .338? Is penetration similar using the "standard" 180-grain .300 against the 250-grain .338 Winchester? I would say the .338 with 250's should give more penetration given from what I've read, but I've never tested them out myself, but that's worth exactly what I paid for the advice...nothing!


Didn't read thru all the posts, so this may be redundant. Short answer is NO.

The GAME (NA, anyway- all I have experience with) can't tell a bit of difference from .243 to .375 as far as I can tell, properly hit. This is based on something over 100 head (a piddling amount compared to some posters here) of BG animals killed with everything from .243 to .375, whitetail to moose. The moose double-lunged at 70-80 yards with .243 100 gr. C&C went about 20 yards. One moose quartering one-lung hit with a .30-06 180 gr. at 160 yards (my longest shot ever on 20+ moose) went about 100 yards. An elk hit with 140 gr. .260 bullet was bang-flop. Neck spine shattered. Several caribou double lunged with the same .260 loads beyond 300 yards also bang-flopped or almost. One or two seconds thinking about it doesn't count.... A caribou double lunged with .30-06 150 gr at 300 yards two years ago went 120-150 yards all told, out and back, dying within yards of where first shot. A second caribou at 433 yards less than a minute after the first one went down, similarily hit, went about 5 yards. These were 150 gr factory loads leaving the muzzle at an advertised 1080 fps.Hornady SuperPerformance factory loads.

Be it noted one will frequently not get a bang flop on moose without a CNS or large bone hit. It can take a bit of time for the lungs to fill up and/or the blood pressure to drop enough for the tip-over. I had a yearling (running at 35 yards), make about 100 yards after I neatly centered a large artery just under his spine with a 12 guage slug immediately behind the shoulder. His meat was durn near white- very pale, anyway. Best eater I've ever had. I missed. I was trying for the spine, since he was between the boat and me, on the trail when I fired.. frown

I don't have a .300, but do have several .30-06s, and one .338WM. I can't tell the difference in "killing power" between them, no matter what loads I use. More importantly, neither can the game. The .300WM is an excellent compromise (I hate to use that word in this context) between them. You are fine with it- you don't need a .338 for anything in NA. You might WANT one for brown/griz bear, but don't really need one. It's why I got mine, as I hunt moose in thick cover, and those 2 gallon piles of steaming bear chit were a bit unsettling. I haven't fired the .338 in 8 years..... smile. I'm hoping to take my next moose with the .260, but not this year - I've only an '06 up here.

I almost never recover a bullet from any caliber, with any load, - unless it hits bone. Then only sometimes, or it is so badly fragmented as to not count. I simply do not worry about "penetration" unless a BULLET proves itself deficient - and I've largely gone back to C&C anyway, which have proven sufficient for most of what i do.

I have only had one bullet fail to penetrate sufficiently to kill the animal. The one that blew up on the shoulder blade of a moose at 100 yards was a Nosler Partition 210 gr. from the .338. First and last animal I ever shot with that load, tho the second one up the nose (more or less) at 10 feet did the job. I prefer not getting that close to a wounded animal, before it lurches it's way back to its feet.... I now usually use an insurance shot from a few yards out.

I used some '06 Federal Hi-Shok (I think they were called) that expanded and separated immediately on a sheep at 330 yards, and a moose 4 days later at 70 yards. They killed but I didn't like the bullet separation an inch or so under the near hide. The moose didn't need the second shot, and possibly not the sheep (shot placement was too high, just under the spine, paralyzing hind legs). Most accurate ammo I ever had for that rifle, however, but no good for hunting anything larger than coyotes, IMO.

Those are the only two loads I have ever found "deficient" and won't ever use again, providing the load is matched to the use. Caliber is down the list a ways... Mostly what I choose to use nowdays is the gun I feel like hunting with, and caliber is secondary.

Last edited by las; 07/17/17.

Whizzer of OTZ
#12151839 - 07/17/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Jamesd1187]  
Joined: Jun 2001
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las Offline
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las  Offline
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Kotzebue, AK
I would add that the best bang/flopper I've ever used to kill game with was a Ruger 77V in.25-06, using 120 grain Speer handloads. 23 caribou in 3 years with it, only the first was not an impressive, right now bang-flop. He took two, only needed one. The first went in at the base of his neck and lodged against the opposite hind leg bone, turning him broadside. The second double-lunged him and was, as all subsequent animals, a Hammer of Thor slap down.

I do like big exit holes, but one does not necessarily need big bores for that.

And incidently, that .243 moose taken with 100 grain Corelokts was a pencil through between ribs on both sides. Mushed the lungs, tho.

Last edited by las; 07/17/17.

Whizzer of OTZ
#12152158 - 07/17/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: las]  
Joined: Mar 2006
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Jordan Smith Offline
Campfire Outfitter
Jordan Smith  Offline
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Posts: 9,068
Calgary, AB, Canada
Originally Posted by las
Originally Posted by JustinL1
I'm curious about this myself...I hunt with a .300 Winchester, killed white tails, mule deer, and an elk with it...but bought a .338 for elk/moose. The .338 I bought didn't give me the accuracy I wanted, so I just continued using the .300, but I still have an itch for a .338, even though from what I've read, you really can't tell the difference between the 2 on game.

So- can anyone here tell the difference on elk/moose/bear with the .300 vs .338? Is penetration similar using the "standard" 180-grain .300 against the 250-grain .338 Winchester? I would say the .338 with 250's should give more penetration given from what I've read, but I've never tested them out myself, but that's worth exactly what I paid for the advice...nothing!


Didn't read thru all the posts, so this may be redundant. Short answer is NO.

The GAME (NA, anyway- all I have experience with) can't tell a bit of difference from .243 to .375 as far as I can tell, properly hit. This is based on something over 100 head (a piddling amount compared to some posters here) of BG animals killed with everything from .243 to .375, whitetail to moose. The moose double-lunged at 70-80 yards with .243 100 gr. C&C went about 20 yards. One moose quartering one-lung hit with a .30-06 180 gr. at 160 yards (my longest shot ever on 20+ moose) went about 100 yards. An elk hit with 140 gr. .260 bullet was bang-flop. Neck spine shattered. Several caribou double lunged with the same .260 loads beyond 300 yards also bang-flopped or almost. One or two seconds thinking about it doesn't count.... A caribou double lunged with .30-06 150 gr at 300 yards two years ago went 120-150 yards all told, out and back, dying within yards of where first shot. A second caribou at 433 yards less than a minute after the first one went down, similarily hit, went about 5 yards. These were 150 gr factory loads leaving the muzzle at an advertised 1080 fps.Hornady SuperPerformance factory loads.

Be it noted one will frequently not get a bang flop on moose without a CNS or large bone hit. It can take a bit of time for the lungs to fill up and/or the blood pressure to drop enough for the tip-over. I had a yearling (running at 35 yards), make about 100 yards after I neatly centered a large artery just under his spine with a 12 guage slug immediately behind the shoulder. His meat was durn near white- very pale, anyway. Best eater I've ever had. I missed. I was trying for the spine, since he was between the boat and me, on the trail when I fired.. frown

I don't have a .300, but do have several .30-06s, and one .338WM. I can't tell the difference in "killing power" between them, no matter what loads I use. More importantly, neither can the game. The .300WM is an excellent compromise (I hate to use that word in this context) between them. You are fine with it- you don't need a .338 for anything in NA. You might WANT one for brown/griz bear, but don't really need one. It's why I got mine, as I hunt moose in thick cover, and those 2 gallon piles of steaming bear chit were a bit unsettling. I haven't fired the .338 in 8 years..... smile. I'm hoping to take my next moose with the .260, but not this year - I've only an '06 up here.

I almost never recover a bullet from any caliber, with any load, - unless it hits bone. Then only sometimes, or it is so badly fragmented as to not count. I simply do not worry about "penetration" unless a BULLET proves itself deficient - and I've largely gone back to C&C anyway, which have proven sufficient for most of what i do.

I have only had one bullet fail to penetrate sufficiently to kill the animal. The one that blew up on the shoulder blade of a moose at 100 yards was a Nosler Partition 210 gr. from the .338. First and last animal I ever shot with that load, tho the second one up the nose (more or less) at 10 feet did the job. I prefer not getting that close to a wounded animal, before it lurches it's way back to its feet.... I now usually use an insurance shot from a few yards out.

I used some '06 Federal Hi-Shok (I think they were called) that expanded and separated immediately on a sheep at 330 yards, and a moose 4 days later at 70 yards. They killed but I didn't like the bullet separation an inch or so under the near hide. The moose didn't need the second shot, and possibly not the sheep (shot placement was too high, just under the spine, paralyzing hind legs). Most accurate ammo I ever had for that rifle, however, but no good for hunting anything larger than coyotes, IMO.

Those are the only two loads I have ever found "deficient" and won't ever use again, providing the load is matched to the use. Caliber is down the list a ways... Mostly what I choose to use nowdays is the gun I feel like hunting with, and caliber is secondary.


Good post +1


"Others are happy to hit the rock, or maybe the dark spot on the rock. I wanna head shoot the mite clinging to the pubes on the left nut of the fly that's sitting on the black spot on the rock."
#12152678 - 07/17/17 Re: 300 magnum vs 338 [Re: Bighorn]  
Joined: Feb 2001
Posts: 2,106
Ray Offline
Campfire Ranger
Ray  Offline
Campfire Ranger

Joined: Feb 2001
Posts: 2,106
Alaska
Originally Posted by Bighorn
Originally Posted by Coyote_Hunter
For me the math is easy, Two Ruger MKII rifles, one in .300WM, the other in .338WM. Both have Zytel .with boat paddle stocks. Have not weighed the rifles but assume about 8.3 pounds with scope.

300WM = 180g @ 3033fps using 70.0g powder, calculated recoil = 29.2 ft-lbs
338WM = 225g @ 2742fps using 69.0g powder, calculated recoil = 33.8 ft-lbs

"Shoulder math" concurs with the calculated recoil - the .338WM hits harder, and noticeably so.


Here are some similar calculations made on JBM ballistics software:

Assume a .300 WM and a .338, both in 9 lb. rifles.
.300 WM = 180 gr., 69 gr. powder, 3100 fps MV, - Recoil velocity 14.0 ft/sec., Recoil energy 27.4 ft.lbs., Recoil impulse 3.9 lb/sec.

.338 WM = 225 gr., 70 gr. powder, 2850 fps MV- Recoil velocity 15.4 ft/sec., Recoil energy 32.2 ft. lbs., Recoil impulse 4.3 lb/sec.

The .338 in these identical weight rifles has more recoil, and does so at a higher recoil velocity, than the .300- so much for the theory that the .338's recoil is more of a 'push'. It is not.
It boils down to stock design, how the rifle fits the shooter, recoil pads, etc. that factor in to the subjective nature of felt recoil. One of the hardest 'kicking' rifles I have ever shot belongs to my daughter in law- it is a Savage .270, shooting factory 130 gr. ammo.



Yes, stock design and fit, plus weight have a lot to with perceived recoil. I got a .338 Ruger Hawkeye African (without the muzzle brake) that has a McMillan stock with a Decelerator recoil pad. The LOP is 12-1/2" (includes the pad). This rifle does not kick as one would expect, more like a shove against my shoulder.

Last edited by Ray; 07/17/17.
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