Best Caliber for plainsgame in Africa ? Your opinion

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by Frederik, Jun 6, 2009.

?

Best caliber for plainsgame

  1. various 7mm's

    22 vote(s)
    10.2%
  2. 308

    14 vote(s)
    6.5%
  3. 30-06

    35 vote(s)
    16.3%
  4. various .300's

    69 vote(s)
    32.1%
  5. 338 win mag

    32 vote(s)
    14.9%
  6. 358. norma magnum

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  7. 9.3 x 62

    12 vote(s)
    5.6%
  8. 375 H&H

    31 vote(s)
    14.4%
  1. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Mike,

    Had used my cousins .416 Weatherby on a moose was a one shot kill through the chest , the punch and thump is good, but never used a .416 Rigby, my preferred calibres have been .375 H&H by Weatherby astounding wallop.
    You have pretty fine rifle there .

    monish
     
  2. mikeh416Rigby

    mikeh416Rigby AH Senior Member

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    When shooting the 416 Rigby, you know you've got ahold of a weapon that bites on both ends, but it really isn't bad. I've shot the 416 Weatherby and imo it bites the shoulder and cheek worse than the Rigby. I'll stick with my Rigby.
     
  3. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    True , my .460 Wthrby bites more . But these calibers have a OOOOOMPH !!!!!! Thwack.

    Monish
     
  4. KMG Hunting Safaris

    KMG Hunting Safaris SPONSOR AH Elite

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    Frederik,
    When you say , sufficient, any of the 7mm's, including your .30 cal would be fine. The most important thing is that you are comfortable with the rifle up to about 200 yards. Our game has been flagged as tougher than most game around the world, due to the conditions they have to live in.
    Saying that, a medium to large calibre shot, like a 338 or 375, even if the shot is not perfect , will do more damage and your chances of recovering the animal will be better. Even a 6.5mm in the right place, will be deadly, emphasis being in the right place.

    Regards
     
  5. 505ED

    505ED AH Veteran

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    I have killed a pot load of exotic animals here in texas with a 308, mild mannered and accurate. I'm hunting with Louis at Spiral Horn in Sept, and I will have a 308 with me, I'll have my 375 too ;)
     
  6. Spiral Horn Safaris

    Spiral Horn Safaris SPONSOR AH Fanatic

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    Hi guy’s

    I don’t think there is one caliber that is best suited for Africa just because of the diversity in species as well as habitat.

    I would recommend any of the 300’s providing you have some good bullets as well not over expensive stuff Federal Premium’s will do just fine.

    However is saying that a 375 H&H is most probably the most versatile caliber for hunting in Africa.

    Best Regards
    Louis van Bergen
     
  7. BigJim

    BigJim New Member

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    I voted for the 30.06 cause that is what I'm most comfortable with and took all my plains critters on my first Zim Safari. However, it doesn't get to make the next trip cause I'm taking my .416 Rigby and 7MM Rem Mag to be broken in properly. :)
    Happy Hunting!
     
  8. Albertahunter

    Albertahunter New Member

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    From personal experience, the 300 WSM is the best all round bullet for a plains game safari. In '09 I took Bushbuck, kudu, gemsbok, impala and eland all with the same load. 180 gr. Winchester supreme elites performed flawlessly out of my Browning A-Bolt. Accuracy was excellent and bullet performance was worth the extra bucks. My eland went 10 steps and fell stone dead after 1 shot! Penetrated behind the front shoulder and was recovered at full expansion just under the skin on the, what would have been, exit side. Works well on elk back home too!
     
  9. nsok

    nsok AH Veteran

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    Depends on the shot distance and the area you are going to hunt. Long distance and not thick bush, 300 WM works quite good. Medium - short distances, thick bush and big antelopes 9,3x62.
     
  10. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    With good bullets all are fine calibers for most plains game, but if eland which can be huge are hunted I pick the .338 Win Mag. Bullet quality is of the utmost importance. I used the .338 in RSA in '09 with the 225 gr. Hornady InterBond bullet and while everything hit (properly) died quickly, the two bullets recovered had lost around 50 percent of their weight and that with a reduced muzzle velocity of only just over 2600 fps. A bonded bullet should hang together better. A friend who used the same bullet in 308 and .30-06 had better weight retention with his running around 75 percent and many one shot kills, though no eland.
     
  11. BETO

    BETO AH Senior Member

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    Friends,

    I'll report my experience with 338Lapua,

    I'm using a SAKO rifle M995, with a scope IOR MP8 2.5x10x42 ILL, recently went to a deer hunt in the swamps, animals of 560 pounds, well,

    were in four hunters with various weapons, 300WM, 375HH, 3006, clearing a difficult terrain that the animals see you at 500/600 meters, hardly able to shoot less than 250 meters, the result of shots 338Lapua with bullets from 250gr Senar 700 meters in two deer is overwhelming, the animals fell dead without taking a step in the place, the other calibers had much difficulty in reaching targets up to 400 meters and still run to put the animals shot by several feet to fall due to bleeding, the bullets lose too much speed and not much expansion penetrating little animals.

    [​IMG]

    I think a lot of speed and a good weight helps a lot of bullets in the slaughter of plain games.

    Now I ordered a rifle in 408cheytac, very light and extremely weatherproof time in a few days I receive and test it on a buffalo hunt, i put the result to you.

    Another great passion is the Weatherby calibers varying from 378WBY.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    portugues

    Amigos,

    Vou relatar minha experiência com 338Lapua, estou usando um rifle SAKO M995 com uma scope IOR 2.5x10x42 MP8 ILL, recentemente fomos a uma caçada de veados nos pântanos, animais de 280 quilos, bem, estávamos em 4 caçadores com armas diversas, 300WM, 375HH, 3006, um terreno difícil descampado que os animais enxergam você a 500/600 metros, dificilmente se consegue disparar a menos de 250 metros, o resultado dos tiros de 338Lapua com bullets Senar de 250GR a 700 metros em dois veados foi fulminante, os animais caíram mortos sem dar um passo do lugar, os demais calibres tiveram muita dificuldade em atingir alvos acima de 400 metros e mesmo assim colocam os animais pra correr baleados por muitos metros até caírem por sangramento, os bullets perdem muita velocidade e não tem muita expansão penetrando pouco nos animais.

    Acredito que muita velocidade e um bom peso de bullets ajuda muito no abate dos plain games.

    Agora mandei fazer um rifle em 408cheytac, muito leve e extremamente resistente a intempéries do tempo, em poucos dias devo receber ele e testar em uma caça de búfalos, ai posto o resultado pra vocês.

    Outra grande paixão são os Weatherby variados do 378WBY.
     
  12. trigger creep

    trigger creep AH Enthusiast

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    Nobody has voted for the .358 Norma magnum? I'm sure that is because nobody has one, not because the cartridge is at fault. I'd love to have one someday, preferably a Husqvarna, but those Husky's cost around 1,500 $! I'm not sure I'm willing to pay so much for a cartridge of .358 diameter! I'd rather pay 1,500 $ and get a .375 H&H mag and be done with it, if I was to pay that kind of money.
     
  13. oenpelli

    oenpelli AH Member

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    Hear hear!
     
  14. Jim Rea

    Jim Rea AH Senior Member

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    Well, my caliber is not there, but Craig Boddington agrees with me. The 8mm Remington Magnum is my choice. Took it to South Africa 9 one shot kills.
     
  15. monish

    monish AH Elite

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    Jim,

    Your shot placements must been much more than perfect 8 mm's are great calibers too , here in India our Indian Ordanance Factories produce a sporting rifle based on Lee Enfield action on 8mm caliber firing a RN 244 grain bullet .

    Specifications :

    .315 Sporting Rifle

    PERFORMANCE:
    With Standard Ammunition, the dispersion area will be 101.6 mm x 101.6 mm at 91.34 meters (100 Yds) and 304.8 mm x 304.8 mm at 274.32 meters (300 Yds) with a series of 6 shots with one elimination in both the cases.

    Calibre 8 mm (.315")
    Overall length 44''/1117mm( approx) Length of Barrel 640 mm
    Rear Sight
    Open sight with two leaves
    Graduated to 91.44 Meters (100 Yds) and 274.32 Meters (300 Yds)
    Range 275 Meters

    Trigger Pull 2.27 to 2.72 Kgs
    Weight of Rifle 3.34 Kgs (approx) (without magazine)
    Magazine Box type,Capacity-5 cartridges.


    But as they "Its not the rifle but the man behind the rifle".

    Monish
     

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  16. AlSpaeth

    AlSpaeth AH Senior Member

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    Ten years of hunting with clients taught me a lot. If we assume factory ammo then the "one gun" solution has to be 30-06. Hundreds of articles have been written to confirm my feelings. Many calibers look good on paper but perform poorly in the veld.
    "Various 7mms" is a mistake. 7X57 is still a great caliber. 7mm rem mag was a disaster for me. Clients had lots of wounded animals, meat damage, and excessive recoil. Same goes for the .270 win - tracked lots of wounded animals shot by a .270.
    Various 300's - all good in the hands of an experienced hunter with the right ammo. But high recoil and costly to shoot. I us a 300H&H with 180gr Nozler Partitions as a backup rifle for clients purely because "backup" shots at wounded animals are often over 300 yds.. For my own hunting I avoid long range shots and the 30-06 is great out to 300 yds.
    338 Win Mag - You couldn't give me one. My 300H&H out shoots it on both distance and accuracy with less recoil and cost. I use a 375H&H if I need more stopping power than the the 300. 338 is neither fish nor fowl - and most of my clients suffered from the recoil -just like like a Weatherby. Same for 358 Norma.
    I had a 9.3X62 Obendorf mauser. Loved it for kudu in thick bush - but was always happier with my .375H&H. Sold it.
    I have hunted with my 30-06 for forty years. I use mainy 165gr Nosler partitions. I don't care what the ballistic charts say - I shoot with confidence and it never fails to do the job with minimal meat damage. I have also shot springbuck in the karoo with 55gr "Accelerator" heads, heads, and have used 220gr as a slower heavier bullet is more effective in thick bush. I never owned one, but I think the .308 is an under rated caliber and would put it second to my 30-06 as a "one gun solution".
    What is the secret of the "best gun". I assume you are refering to the average sports hunter who probably hunts not more than three times a year. He needs a proven caliber which is effective on anything from our pygmy antelope like Steenbuck and Duiker though Kudu and Eland and at anything from 25 meters to 250 meters. 30-06 is the answer - it has the accuracy, range, stopping power, and can be shot with confidence and without excessive recoil. Oh, and by the way, he doesn't need a 3-20 variable power astronomical telescope - just a good 4 power - and factory ammo.
     
  17. Jim Rea

    Jim Rea AH Senior Member

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    Monish,
    I had a very good PH who got me in position to make shots at relatively close distances. I am not familiar with the Indian 8mm. The one I used is based on the 375 H & H case necked down to 8mm. The one factoryload available is the 200 grain Swift A-Frame bullet at 2950 fps. It has performed stupendously on anything that I have ever shot.
     
  18. Kiwi505

    Kiwi505 AH Veteran

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    Interesting question. I voted for the 300's simply because I like the caliber. But I think that the bottom line is use a rifle that you are familier with and trust completely. Chambering is irrelivent if you have total confidence in the rifle and your ability to use it.
     
  19. AlSpaeth

    AlSpaeth AH Senior Member

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    Hi Jim,
    I had the pleasure of Hunting with Craig Boddingtion in South Africa twice in past years. There are great calibers - and there are great hunters. Craig is not just a great writer. His passion for hunting combined with his vast knowledge and experience with with an unbelieveable range of traditional and more recent caliber rifles is unparalleled among today's hunters. Any caliber in Craigs hands could look good. I'd go elephant hunting with him and a 7X57. What's good for Craig might not suit the average hunter who has to settle for one rifle to suit all his needs. For the one gun hunter I'd leave out the exotics and stick with 30-06.
    Regards,
    Al Spaeth
     
  20. Jim Rea

    Jim Rea AH Senior Member

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    Thanks for the reply AlSpaeth. You are fortunate indeed to have hunted with Craig. I have only talked to him at the SHOT Show.
    I guess that is why we have so many calibers. We can all choose that which we deem best. I'll stich with my 5mm mag. When going against really large plains game such as Eland, I'm sure it will perform the way I expect it to. Good Luck hunting.
     

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