338 WINCHESTER MAGNUM

Discussion in 'Up To .375' started by BARTFRNCS, May 15, 2011.

  1. ww ace

    ww ace New Member

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    Swift A frames in 225gr are excellent for 338wm. Barnes 225gr I am not a fan of at all, A guest at our camp this year shot up a caribou with them, final shot which I witnessed from no more than 12 yards penetrated no more than 3 inches into the animals neck without hitting the spine. Recovered bullet looked ok just horrible performance, ammo was premium Federal factory.
     
  2. fhm3006

    fhm3006 AH Enthusiast

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  3. timbear

    timbear AH Enthusiast

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    Sorry, Brickburn, my bad, I had you mixed up with Bartfrncs. Apologies!
     
  4. 505ED

    505ED AH Veteran

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    A 338 hammers the sh*t out of stuff....elk,eland,whitetail,caribou,moose,sheep,nilgai,kudu,puku,gemsbok,kudu,mountain lion,musk ox,aoudad, addax,mouflon,mule deer,pigs,impala....what have I missed????

    Ed
     
  5. kingcorona

    kingcorona AH Member

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    Velocity(over) is the enemy of penetration and expansion.......a 338 round at twelve rounds will create so much hydrostatic shock that it's like a bullet hitting a concrete wall...little penetration and more than likely bullet destruction......bullets are designed to perform at a range of velocities....usually not at 2800+ fps that a 225 gr will achieve at that distance....would have been better off using a solid from a 375 or 358....don't believe there is a 338 solid....but I could be wrong.....maybe an all copper barnes TTSX would have survived.....maybe not
     
  6. kingcorona

    kingcorona AH Member

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    make that 12 yards not rounds...............
     
  7. Rastaman

    Rastaman AH Veteran

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    I am unsure what you mean by the "big stuff." I think the 338 is plenty big for all plains game. I use a 250 grain a-frame but see that most like the 225 grain. If you are not taking DG then why take two guns so close in performance? Instead, take the 338 and then something like a 243 or 22 mag to have some real fun. Let the 338 be your big gun.
     
  8. richteb

    richteb AH Enthusiast

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    For those who maybe interested in learning a little about terminal ballistics and some of the myths that are bandid around here is a link. It does require patience when reading as it does get a little technical. Hopefully Jerome will allow the link.

    Terminal Ballistics
     
  9. Canuck

    Canuck New Member

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    I have used my 338 with 225 gr A frames and bonded core locks in SA and Namibia. It will do a fine job on any of the bigger plains game. I have used it on springbok (only rifle I have here in SA) - but it is on the big side for smaller plains game (impala, blesbok, springbok) but would be my choice for Eland, zebra, kudu (x3), gemsbok, wildebeest ect.

    As for ammo here - it is very expensive and difficult to find at least in Joburg/PTA area. I would expect the same in Namibia.

    The 338 is as others have commented very close to 375. In fact you can load it with a 300gr solid at around 2450 which is a near ideal load for DG. I know of folks that have taken buff this year with this combination and know of others that have used this for Ele. Although I would recommend something bigger for DG in my opinion. I wouldn't chose a 375 for DG - I would be inclined to 400+ but I haven't gone after DG at this point.

    Overall my theory goes - use enough gun, shot placement is everything. And just be cause it can be done with a smaller gun doesn't mean that it is the recommended calibre to do the job quickly and cleanly.

    The 338 will take care of any plains game with authority if you place it in the right spot. I have even taken a backing shot on an eland and had an A frame travel traversely from back to front on a big bull at about 100 yrds - amazing penetration (4-5 feet)

    Hope this helps.
     
  10. shaffce

    shaffce New Member

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    338 WIN MAG

    The 338 WM is a great cartridge! That was my heavy gun on my first plains game hunt. Mine is a Ruger allweather stainless. that thing seems to shoot tighter groups the hotter you load it. I was shooting a 225 grain at speeds that I don't want to publish. After dropping several animals in thier tracks including a nice Black wildebeast at 100 yards(he still had the grass in his mouth that he was chewing on when i shot) My PH allowed me to take a real nice Kudu at over 300 yards. The .338 is a real flat shooting, hard hitting round. There isn't much it can't do. Unfortunately it is an older Ruger and isn't CRF. I'll save it for when the kids can handle the recoil.

    I have since switched to the .375 ruger because .338 isn't legal on the dangerous game species if we would bump into one. I don't take the .338 to Africa because it is redundant with the .375. Last trip i took the .375 and a 25-06. Next trip I hope to have the 25-06 rebarreled to a 7MM for the wife. And to be truthfull I don't use the .338 for anything because i want to use the .375 for everything. Until I get a double rifle that is..................
     
  11. Cone

    Cone New Member

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    Used my .338 on first trip (for plains game), load was 185 gr Barnes bullets. More than enough gun...complete perferation on all animals taken including gemsbok, kudu, and zebra. If your rifle is sufficiently heavy, the much ballyhooed recoil is quite manageable. Have used mine for caribou, red stag, even white tails (with 160 gr Barnes bullets. Used Federal 210 NP loads for the stag buy have found Barnes the way to go.
     
  12. .416 Rigby

    .416 Rigby AH Member

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    The .338 is a great PG cartridge. I would recommend bullets in the 225-250 grain class. A-Frames, TSX, North Forks, TBBC's, and the great Woodleigh Weldcore. See which one shoots best in your rifle and take that load with you. You won't go wrong with any of the above.
     
  13. 35bore

    35bore AH Elite

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    The 338 is among one of my top 5,it is a fantastic caliber but, since i own a 375 H&H, the difference is too close to own both (someday I will own a rifle in every caliber). Take your 375 and a 7x57 and have fun.
     
  14. BARTFRNCS

    BARTFRNCS AH Enthusiast

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    Having shot my CZ 550 375H&H hundreds of times from all practical field positions I will stick to a one gun safari. 375H&H all the way. When Im not using my 450 Rigby.
     
  15. 35bore

    35bore AH Elite

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    There you go, the 375 H&H is fantastic, and I wish you well on your hunt. Sounds like your mind was made up before you started this thread, again good luck and have fun.
     
  16. Mr. 16 gauge

    Mr. 16 gauge AH Member

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    I just bought a .338 Win. mag earlier this year (a "pre-owned" Ruger M77). I always wanted a .338 and a Ruger 77....now I have both in the same package! I finally got it out to the range last weekend. I was surprised when I initially fired it that it didn't kick as badly as I had imagined it would; however, by the end of the third box/beginning of the 4th, my shoulder was starting to sting a little....by the end of the sixth box, it was stinging a LOT!!!
    Ran some factory and some handloads through it......most accurate factory load was Hornady's 225 grain SST; the Winchester 200 grain Power point was second best, and the Remington 225 grain core-lokts ran around 1" @ 100 yards. Of my handloads, the loads using the 225 grain Nosler accubond and IMR4831 ran about an 1", while the load using Hodgdon H4895 ran around 3/4". I still have a few more handloads to test, and the one cast bullet load that I found didn't shoot worth a diddly!:(
    I plan on having the gun mag-na-ported, just so I can shoot it more and (hopefully), better.....
    Looking forward to the day when I can use it to take Kudu and Gemsbok!!!!:D
     
  17. Wolverine67

    Wolverine67 AH Fanatic

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    Mr. 16 gauge, dont magnaport the rifle. You are better of with a surpressor. If they are not allowed where you live, you can put a muzzlebrake on the threads. Then when you go to Africa, you just take it off, or put a surpressor there instead.
    Ph's really dont like Magnaports or muzzelbrakes. It makes a blast around the ears of withstanders.
     
  18. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Certainly not great for accuracy!

    Take some sheep skin out next time and maybe you can avoid creating a flinch.
    Tough or crazy, not sure which.
    I know too many people who got these rifles and made themselves "scared" of them.

    Good luck.
     
  19. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Maybe I'm a wimpy person. But I usually limit myself to one box of ammo a day for calibers this big. Otherwise I usually have a bruised shoulder or tender shoulder.

    You can have it Magnaported, but it will be super loud. I ported my 300 Win Mag and somedays I regret it...because the noise is unnecessary. That being said it's easier to shoot. I will not port my 338 Win Mag or another gun for that matter. Most gun just have to adjusted to fit you perfect and then you just have to get use to recoil.
     

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