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.375 H&H Rifle?

This is a discussion on .375 H&H Rifle? within the .375 & Up forums, part of the HUNTING EQUIPMENT, FIREARMS & AMMUNITION category; I'm thinking of picking up a rifle for my future trip to Africa and have plans to hunt the following ...

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    Rich219 is offline AH Member
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    Default .375 H&H Rifle?

    I'm thinking of picking up a rifle for my future trip to Africa and have plans to hunt the following animals while down there for my first time.

    -Baboon
    -Hyena (Spotted)
    -Blesbok
    -Caracal
    -Gemsbok
    -Impala
    -Red Hartebeast
    -Springbok
    -Steekbok
    -Warthog
    -Zebra

    I would like to get a rifle that could also be used for moose or bear as well.

    I guess a 375 H&H sounds like a bit of overkill for the above animals but maybe I am wrong. If a 375 H&H is too much gun for the above animals what would you recommend?

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    .375 is fine I shot some of your list with my .338 Lapua and most of the rest with my .257 WBY. Both worked great in the killing dept but the .338 actually did less damage to the hides (despite doing more damage inside). I wouldnt hesitate to shoot a Steinbok with my .338 and Barnes bullets, Steinbok are small enough I dont think the bullet would really have time to expand anyway.
    The journey is the reward.

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    35Whelen...

    The 375 would work fine, if you shoot it well.
    "That which does not kill us makes us stronger" Friedrich Nietzsche // That which does not kill me, better run like hell" Scott Smith

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    Lots of people use them.
    Certainly when there just might be something bigger and meaner you are required to deal with.
    Practice whispering before you leave for Africa!
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    So it wouldn't be overkill for a Baboon, Caracal, etc? I just don't want to shoot something and find out that I completely ruined the hide.

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    My guess would be that it would be a complete pass through on thin skinned animals. Main reason I believe this is I had a complete pass trough on a whitetail, it damaged less meat than my 270win and the wound channel was slightly larger than the bullet diameter. Dead is dead, and NO I don't think it would be overkill. Like Brick said, you don't know what may come out of the bush.

    If you are hunting SA, where DG are not on the property, then go with something smaller 338 or below, but, if you are hunting the "wilds" of Africa, go with the H&H.
    "That which does not kill us makes us stronger" Friedrich Nietzsche // That which does not kill me, better run like hell" Scott Smith

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    Thanks, at the end of the day I'm just looking for a good excuse to add a 375 to the collection!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich. View Post
    So it wouldn't be overkill for a Baboon, Caracal, etc? I just don't want to shoot something and find out that I completely ruined the hide.
    Solid's will pass through the little stuff.

    Make sure of the back drop and there are not three in line or your bill will be way higher.

    have fun buying your new rifle.
    Practice whispering before you leave for Africa!
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    Here is a link to an article showing a rabbit shot with a .375 H&H.
    Link: Remington .375 H&H Dangerous Game Rifle | Hunting Australia | The Hunt and Shoot Network - for hunting news, videos and equipment.
    As you see, it has a hole, but is otherwise undamaged (unlike the .220 Swift, where all you find is pink fluff!). So I believe the caliber is well suited to anything that walks, smallest to largest, and anyone going to Africa should have one (personal opinion, see below). I simply LOVE my CZ 550 in .375 Holland & Holland!
    Overkill is underestimated!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich. View Post
    Thanks, at the end of the day I'm just looking for a good excuse to add a 375 to the collection!
    What better excuse than Africa??? Have a great trip, let us know which rifle you chose in 375
    "That which does not kill us makes us stronger" Friedrich Nietzsche // That which does not kill me, better run like hell" Scott Smith

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    Which model 550 do you have? How do the CZs compare to Winchester Mod 70s in terms of quality, etc.?

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    I must admit that I have not shot the Winchester Mod 70. The CZ is the American straight stock model (I was advised by an experienced Africa hunter that the hogsback can recoil upwards and smack your cheek in the larger calibers). The quality is excellent, and I like the 5 shot magazine as opposed to Winchester's (and most others') 3 shot mag. I bought mine second hand from a bloke who hunted water buffalo and scrub bulls in Australia's Northern Territory, and it has accounted for a few, and held up under very severe climatic conditions. The action is smooth, the trigger crisp (and you have a set trigger, which is quite nice off sticks), and it has CR feed which I think is essential, not only for DG. A Mauser action - what else? The weight is 9.9lbs as opposed to Winchester's 9lbs, but that helps to soak up recoil, and I am fairly large. I tried a few (Ruger, Interarms), but this one just fits perfectly.
    Overkill is underestimated!

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    550 American, can't go wrong with a straight comb.
    "That which does not kill us makes us stronger" Friedrich Nietzsche // That which does not kill me, better run like hell" Scott Smith

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich. View Post
    Which model 550 do you have? How do the CZs compare to Winchester Mod 70s in terms of quality, etc.?
    I own a M70 in .375 and a CZ in .416 Rigby. It's very difficult to compare how the recoil feels with the Rigby being much more stout obviously. The CZ is balanced better and nicer to swing, the M70's has it's weight a bit forward. But in my opinion the M70 is an out of the box shooter. There's is nothing I feel I have to do to that rifle and thus far haven't. The CZ I got was if ever shot, very little. I have read that out of the box they need to be cycled a bit to smooth them up, no need on mine. The stock trigger as is on mine is horrible with way too much creep.

    In the end they both have their upsides and downsides. I'm not planning on parting ways with either but I do plan on putting some work in on the CZ and likely more than I have to in the M70. I'd suggest trying to handle and dry firing both, or better yet shoot them if you can. Pick the one you like best and likely you'll never be disappointed. Both of those rifles in the big bores have killed plenty of DG.

    BTW, both of these rifles were pretty easy to find accurate loads for.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BRICKBURN View Post
    Solid's will pass through the little stuff.

    Make sure of the back drop and there are not three in line or your bill will be way higher.

    have fun buying your new rifle.
    ..+1...there are PMP 286 gr solids available off the shelf. These are excellent bullets for the small 10. But again, be carefull of their penetration ability.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich. View Post
    So it wouldn't be overkill for a Baboon, Caracal, etc? I just don't want to shoot something and find out that I completely ruined the hide.
    Heavily constructed bullets will hardly notice that anything was in their path. Lightly constructed bullets (Ballistic tips etc) may be bad news on small stuff. Just like a .220 swift with Ballistic tips creates a nice pink mist on so many critters.
    The journey is the reward.

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    If you need an excuse to get a new gun go for it. If you are a little recoil shy then don't. All of the animals on your list can be easily killed with a 7mm or any of the .30 calibers. Use a well constructed bullet and you'll have the same result as w/ the .375. Enjoy Africa. Fun place to hunt. Bruce

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    Rich,
    In my humble opinion, there is no such thing as being "over gunned". This term can be used with any caliber when teamed with a incorrect bullet for a particular animal. Case in point: a .375 or .416 with solids is better for any of the smaller game (Steenbuck, Klipspringer, civet, caracal, duikers, etc) than a medium caliber (.270, 7mag, .300 etc) with expanding bullets. The expanding bullets will do far more damage than good on the small fragil animals. Your taxidermist will not be happy. As far as the other direction, a .375 or .416 being "too big" for Medium game (kudu, Blesbok, impala, etc..), B.S. Proper bullets in these calibers will cause a larger wound channel with less "shock" and meat damage. For everything but DG, I have used a .338 Win Mag for the last 25 years on everything from Pronghorn antelope, to whitetails, on up to Eland. I have shown guys, in the animals processing stage, that the .338 actually does less damage than their .270/30-06/7mag etc.. Think about this: using a .270 or .284 dia expanding bullet, it is designed to "expand" to at least twice it's original dia. in ideal conditions and retain 90% of it's original weight. That would make a 130gr, .270 bullet expand to .540 and weigh in at 117gr. A solid .375 still cuts a .375 hole and retains 100% of it's weight. On small stuff it kills just as quick without the devastating damage.

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    I shot the following last year in Limpopo with a Browning A-Bolt 300 Win-Mag using a 180 Gr Nosler Partition (Federal):

    -Impala
    -Warthog
    -Hartebeest
    -Kudu
    -Eland
    -Wildebeest
    -Gemsbok
    -Bushbuck
    -Waterbuck
    -Nyala
    -Zebra

    ALL (and I say ALL) the shots were at a minimum of 150 yards and up to 250 yards. All (except for the Gemsbok) were one-shot kills. So as someone above indicated, 30 cal will do the trick. That being said, by all means, DO take that beautiful 375 to Africa to hunt your list. It's part of what makes this such a great experience - using great tools!

    I'm taking my 375HH for Buffalo, Leopard and Plains Game in April, 2013.

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