.358 Winchester

Discussion in 'Up To .375' started by Kevin Davenport, Jun 13, 2016.

  1. Kevin Davenport

    Kevin Davenport AH Member

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    I've just picked up a Savage 99 in .358 win, does anyone hunt with this round? If so what loads and ranges did you use it in? Also would this be a fesable round for African plains game
     

  2. sandman0921

    sandman0921 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    Kevin,

    I have a Ruger M77 Hawkeye Stainless/Synthetic Stock in 358 Win that I bought several years ago when they were being made in that caliber. I have also acquired a fair amount of loading components for it as well as it is an obsolete round that never really caught on. I purchased this with the thought of taking this rifle with me when I hunt black bear. With everything I ever read on the round, this cartridge by all accounts has always had the reputation of being a "big thumper" and "hitting much harder than it should" when used at moderate ranges (200 yards and in). In fact, it's reputation is that of a "brush buster" that shines in the thick timber where elk hide in some places. I follow all of these statements with the fact that I have never hunted with the round. I originally bought the rifle because the cartridge was an odd-ball, and really is a hand-loaders cartridge.

    John Barsness wrote an article back in the August 2008 issue of Handloader that compared the 338 Federal and the 358 Winchester. His conclusion was that factory 358 Winchester ammunition (i.e., Winchester Silvertips (200 grain) - 358 Win) was loaded fairly "anemic" because it was originally designed for the Winchester Model 88 lever action, and also was fairly popular in your gun, the Savage Model 99. This was done to prevent extraction issues in the lever guns it was used it in at the time. However, when loaded up to it's potential (using maximum pressure data/assumptions of it's parent case, the 308 Winchester) it came within 95% of the 35 Whelen with heavy bullets (2400 fps with a 250 grain bullet) which is no slouch. Furthermore, with light for caliber premium bullets, you could really jazz it up (200 grain Barnes TSX @ 2800 fps)

    The powder of choice for Barsness in the 358 win and heavier bullets was Ramshot TAC. It is a dense, double-based powder that is fairly temperature-stable and very clean burning and, according to experienced hand-loaders, works well in medium-capacity cartridges where powder space is at a premium. That is what I went with as well. I shoot a 225 grain Swift A-frame out my bone-stock Ruger Hawkeye All-Weather rifle in 358 win with a 22 in. barrel at around 2600 fps. It is a MOA to slightly sub-MOA rifle out to 200 yards. If sighted in at +2 inches (high) at 100 yds it is practically dead-on (-0.5 in) at 200 yds. The LC6 trigger, while a vast improvement over the old M77 triggers, is still pretty rough, and as such, I plan to replace it with a Timney at some point. Unfortunately, I have not really tinkered with this rifle for several years, but eventually I will do trigger job on the rifle, as well as having it re-stocked in a laminate stock form Accurate Innovations to add some weight. This rifle wallops you pretty good.

    If you can obtain a copy of his article (Handloader 254, August-September 2008; .338 Federal and .358 Winchester: Peas in a Pod?) it is well worth the read, and a great primer for anyone that loads for this obsolete cartridge. You can order it from Wolfe Publishing (Bandleader Magazine) I believe. Of course it biased towards a bolt-action rifle.....

    I'd be glad to send you the data via PM(conversation) if you'd lie, as I am hesitant to put data out there for the whole world to see.

    All in all, the round compared very favorably to the 338 Federal which has been used very effectively in Africa for plains game. I don't see why the 358 Win couldn't be used as well at moderate ranges. However, I might be reluctant to take a collectable rifle such as the Savage 99 over to Africa with me. I've always wanted a '99 in 358 Win. I'm envious.......
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2016

  3. CAustin

    CAustin AH ENABLER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

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    I suspect it would be just fine on plains game!
     
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  4. Pheroze

    Pheroze AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Nothing wrong with 225 gr at 2600 fps!
     
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  5. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    My dad was a big fan of the round (and the 99) though I don't recall he ever shot anything with it. I had one for a while too, but prefer the Whelen as it is to the .358 what the '06 is to the .308. That being, just a bit better.
     

  6. Kevin Davenport

    Kevin Davenport AH Member

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    Thank you sirs for your responses. Thank you Sandman for the load data!
     

  7. Rule 303

    Rule 303 AH Fanatic

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    I do not have a 358 Win however I do have a356 Win in a Model 94. What's not to like. Fast handling lever gun that points and shoots well for me and this round is good for anything in Australia with the exception of Buffalo. Though at a pinch with Woodleigh 250grain round nose or 225 grain Hydrostatics I would be confident if I could place the shot in the shoulder, brain or heart.

    The 356 is a semi rimed 358 with, in my handloads, 2 to 3 grains less powder than the reloading manuals suggest for the 358. I use this rifle/cartridge to 200mts. I have a peep sight on it and if my eyes were younger would feel confident to 250mts on pigs. Now this is using flatnose or round nose bullets so in the Sav99 with spitzers you will have a 300mt rifle if the group size (Expected scoring area) is acceptable. If I do my part with the 94 100mt groups range from 1 5/8 to 2 3/4 inch groups. That is best to worst.

    Yes I am a 358Calibre nut but none of the above is an exaggeration. A mate has one in a Mod.70 Win has shoot a heap of pigs with it and is more than impressed with it. He is a 9.3X62 fan so the 358Win must be doing something right.

    sandman dust of your Ruger 77 and take it hunting, you won't be disappointed.

    Kevin, if you want some loads let me know and I will send them by PM.
     
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  8. ZG47

    ZG47 AH Enthusiast

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    @Kevin Davenport sandman0921 makes some good points. I have also read the John Barsness article. The author carefully avoided mentioning a brand name BUT the obvious candidate is the original Browning BLR, which is notorious for extraction issues with hotter loads. A gunsmith friend of mine, who recently passed away, had to unscrew the barrel of a BLR chambered in .308 Win., in order to remove a stuck case, after the breech mechanism broke. This was shortly after they came out.

    P.S. John Barsness actually quotes SAAMI maximum pressures and standard commercial pressures for the .358 and the .338.
     
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  9. Kevin Davenport

    Kevin Davenport AH Member

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    I will accept any and all load data that you happen to have.
     

  10. 375 Ruger Fan

    375 Ruger Fan AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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  11. sandman0921

    sandman0921 GOLD SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    Rule 303,

    If I ever make it up to do a stalk and spot hunt for the big black bears of Vancouver Island one day (bucket list), I intend to do just that.....I figure a 225 grain 0.358 Swift A-frame traveling at a shade under 2600 fps (avg. ~ 2590 fps to be exact if my memory serves me) ought to be the ticket for one of those big BC bruins......

    Unfortunately I'm a victim of what I term as "rifle ADD". I will read about a caliber, or particular rifle, that interests me, and then decide I "need" one. Before I know it, I've lost interest in the caliber I was enamored with before. A fun, but expensive, affliction to have for sure.

    Currently, I'm awaiting a B. Searcy Classic double rifle in 450 NE 3 1/4 in., as well as a Winchester Model 70 Pre-64 that Wayne Jacobson at American Hunting Rifles has converted into a 9.3x62 (Mauser) for me. I'm sure those 2 rifles will keep me busy for a while, but then something else will catch my eye.......I keep telling myself, and my wife, "This is it. No more hunting rifles.", but then.....

    As far as the 358 Winchester, at least in a bolt-action rifle, I think this cartridge does well with lighter for weight, premium bullets like the Swift A-frames and Barnes TSX's. One man's opinion.....



    ZG47, you are right. The Browning BLR was chambered in 358 Win for a while as well. And as the other lever guns, I'm sure it could be a hassle to lock one up with a hot load. I just remembered an article I read a few years ago that Paco Kelley wrote about the 358 Win in lever rifles. It's a fairly extensive review of the cartridge if I remember. It might be a worth while read for those wanting to shoot the 358 Win out of a lever rifle.....

    http://www.leverguns.com/articles/paco/358_wcf.htm


    Kevin have fun with that '99
     

  12. colorado

    colorado AH Fanatic

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    Always wanted a BLR in 358 Win, the BLR was chambered for 300 Win Mag so that action is very strong. A nice round, and a nice rifle, congrats!
     
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  13. ChrisG

    ChrisG AH Fanatic

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    It gives up very little to the .350 Rigby. And that was by far one of the most popular rounds in early smokless era Africa. Loaded with 225 - 250 grain premium bullets, I would imagine it would be fully capable of any plains game out to about 250 yards. The .350 rigby with a 300 grain solid was purported to be lethal even on dangerous game and at one point it was widely used for lion hunting.
     
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  14. HWL

    HWL AH Fanatic

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    ...even the Mannlicher-Schoenauer (MC & MCA) and the Steyr-Mannlicher (L) were available in .358 WCF....

    HWL
     
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  15. Spooksar

    Spooksar AH Fanatic

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    I own 3 all levers Browning, Winchester and Savage. I'm thinking of getting a bolt action. I use a 225 gr Accubond with good results. I'm away at the moment so don't have load data handy. I would not hesitate to use one on plains game
     
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  16. D.M.V

    D.M.V AH Fanatic

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    There's a used set of dies on the bargain table down at the local gunshop. I thought about getting them in case I ever get a chance to pick up a rifle in this caliber. Uncommon calibers intrigue me.
     
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  17. Scrumbag

    Scrumbag AH Fanatic

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    Always thought a 358 BLR would be a great boar / brush gun
     
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  18. BUBBA JIM

    BUBBA JIM New Member

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    I have a BLR 358 Win I load Sierra 225 gr SPBTs over 45 grs of H4895 ! This load will END any Boars life with the right shot placement !

    Cheers Bubba
     
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  19. curtism1234

    curtism1234 AH Fanatic

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    Not to stray too far off topic, but I have a new BLR in 308 that's been somewhat negative. You certainly should not expect a 3-4 trigger as advertised. Mine was 7 1/2 pounds and the factory just reworked it to just over 5 pounds (which falls in spec). That's still not 3-4 but better than 7...

    Additionally (and I somewhat expected it), you have to grip the forarm or else it won't hit paper at 100 yards. If you grip the forearm, it does produce a nice 1 1/2" group. That being said, gripping the forarm while in shooting sticks is a bit of chore to say the least with many sticks. It's certainly not the 350 yard gun I thought I was buying.

    But the 358 is not a long range rifle anyway so you would likely be just fine.
     

  20. lwaters

    lwaters BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    I have a BLR in 358 use 225 gr. Nosler partitions at 2400fps. Love gun for black bear over bait. I assume it would do well on leopard
     
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