375's and up: How important is blued/wood vs stainless/synthetic to you for Africa?

What is your personal preference for taking a 375+ to Africa?

  • Blued/wood all the way, don't compromise

  • Blued/wood might be preferred but I wouldn't pass up a good deal

  • Indifferent or Stainless/synthetic preferred


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WAB

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I think the answer to this question may trace all the way back to the post which asked ‘why do you hunt’? I hunt because I am a hunter. I am descended from a family of pioneers who gave up their lives in England to build something better for themselves, and ultimately me, in the New World. Hunting takes me back to that time and reminds me of who I am. When I walk out after a tracker in the bush of Africa, I carry wood and steel.
 

colorado

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My blued / walnut BDL in 270 that I bought in 1966 in Texas has seen many hundreds of days in the field, and has several thousand rounds through it. It's never changed point of impact, always worked perfectly and killed many many animals. I used it in snow and rain in the Adirondacks and Montana, blazing heat in Arizona, never failed me. It belongs to my youngest son's now. Sure the XCR II is more resistant to the weather, but it lacks that bond I had with the rifle. My CZ 550 in 500 Jeffery has taken my BDLs place.

BDL and XCR II



CZ 550



My youngest son's first elk with the ancient BDL. I feel so bad I never took any pictures of my kills and the gorgeous places I hunted for so many years. Guess I was just living in the moment.



My bear with the XCR II



My CZ 550 in 500 Jeffery

 
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Rule 303

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I would not buy a Remington .375 H&H. You must have a quality controlled round feed rifle. This is a gun that you may start out as a PG gun and then move to DG and it must be reliable. Research this site and do not make the price tag your deciding factor. Please!
Philip
I am in disagreeance. I have had failures of all sorts from CRF. I know of a couple of Rem 700 375 H&H that have several thousand rounds through them and no failures of any sort. Yes Quality CRF is preferable and desirable but not a "You must have".

What ever you end up with practice, practice and this includes fast shooting full magazines with the loads you will use. Run the rounds through the rifle - without firing, so dummy rounds - as fast as you can cycle the action. This should help show up any problems with the rifle.
 

1dirthawker

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curtism,

hmmm, so many opinions, so little time. i think each of us has a certain amount of admiration for the wood/blue. some, are pragmatic enough to realize they will get said gun wet and hate to see what it does to their beautiful rifle.

i am a bit of a mercenary about rifles. i admire and have bought rifles for the wood and caliber! but...i am willing to beat them up to a degree. i took my 450-400 3" zoli (has pretty nice wood) and blued and took it out bear guiding on the alaskan peninsula for brown bears. i hung it off my pack and it got a bit scuffed. its a rifle, i am putting "provenance" on it! :)

even in africa i believe some weather conditions are absolutely brutal. boddington hunted the congo and wrote that he nearly ruined a very nice double rifle hunting there.

my go to rifles up here are stainless. i have had bad experiences with blue/steel/wood. rusted chambers on 2 rifles. so... i am a big fan of what works, and stainless WORKS! it might be soul-less and cold and ugly, but it is stable, shoots great, does not need to be cleaned all the time and goes off every time.

regarding WHAT rifle you get, don't worry about 2-300$$. if you need to, save your money a bit longer and get what you WANT. this forum is a great place for ideas on how to spend your money tho.

my 375 is a 375 ruger (stainless/syn) a great working rifle. i did by a 375 h&h o/u blue/wood not too long ago for the wood!! it called to me. wait for the right deal, they have some good buys in the classified on this site, then get what you want and shoot the heck out of it. good luck.
 

Dr Ray

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Try the Winchester safari rifle. Let’s face it when you get to the hunting grounds you’ll be checking the sights.
Only once did I have to make a slight adjustment - when I opened the rifle case the rifle had water over it. That was with Qantas years ago flying Brisbane to Cairns in very humid weather.
The rifle was a timber stocked Browning in 270.
Certainly not the airlines fault but I did check the sighting and had to make a very slight adjustment.
So, I don’t believe wooden or synthetic will make any reason difference and as stated previously you’ll be checking prior to the hunt,
Happy choosing.
 

450 Dakota

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I prefer a McMillan stock to my length of pull, not those plastic factory stocks, and Robar matte finish on the metal with NP3 on the internals. Never worry about the weather with that set up.
 

Philip Glass

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I am in disagreeance. I have had failures of all sorts from CRF. I know of a couple of Rem 700 375 H&H that have several thousand rounds through them and no failures of any sort. Yes Quality CRF is preferable and desirable but not a "You must have".

What ever you end up with practice, practice and this includes fast shooting full magazines with the loads you will use. Run the rounds through the rifle - without firing, so dummy rounds - as fast as you can cycle the action. This should help show up any problems with the rifle.
I’ve had enough trouble with so many rifles the R8 is in the works for me! Just have to cough up some serious coin to get it done though.
Philip
 

Philip Glass

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I respect and appreciate the advise/warning, thank you

I do not know if it would see a DG hunt. With a new baby on the way, I would not consider a DG hunt for at least 20 years. That would put me pushing 60 years old. The 375 has always fascinated me ever since I bought a box of clearanced shells 10 years ago just as a conversation piece.

I could pay $1000 for a used push fed Model 70 or new Browning X bolt, $800 or so for a Browning Abolt, or you can pay $700 for this Remington. My only point being, this particular rifle offers a very good value for an introduction to the 375 and would be more than fine for large PG

Again, I respect the control feed argument
Best of luck. It’s always exciting to pursue a new rifle. .375 is such a great and truly useful round. Good discussion.
Philip
 

IvW

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It probably boils down to personal choice.

Where you will be hunting may also be a decision maker. Harsh high humidity areas may be better suited to synthetic stocks.

The most important consideration for bigger bore rifles 375 H&H and up would be fit. The rifle has to fit you properly and it has to balance. Wood stocks can be manipulated and made to fit easier than synthetics.

All my rifles are wooden stocks and the stocks are functional and chosen for strength rather than beauty.

They are all working rifles and I consider them to be tools.
 

Newboomer

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Walnut and blue steel for me. I've had plastic and stainless guns and they have no personality or soul. They feel dead, no warmth, no character. A good piece of wood has depth and a story to tell in the way the grain runs and the different colors in the wood. Dings, worn bluing and scratches give it a history and when you look at each one you can visualize the circumstances that wrote that chapter, the animal that took that round, when and where it happened. Plastic can't do that. It doesn't possess the capability to tell the story through battle scars and the rigors of a successful hunt.
 

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Wish this thread had started in a few months ...i am currently having a savage stainless built in 318 westley richards ...expect stainless fluted barrel suppressor and tuppaware stock then as thr quick change barrel option on the savage a second barrel in 425 WR ..........have procured a small supply of anti nausea pills for my gun smith ......
 

flatwater bill

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Odinsraven..................plastic stock, fluted bbl on a .318? Some things are just wrong. I mean, on a 270 WSM maybe. Or a 7 STW, yes, but a 318? Like a mustache on a super-model. I hope your gunsmith has a strong constitution...........:)..................FWB
 

Rule 303

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Wish this thread had started in a few months ...i am currently having a savage stainless built in 318 westley richards ...expect stainless fluted barrel suppressor and tuppaware stock then as thr quick change barrel option on the savage a second barrel in 425 WR ..........have procured a small supply of anti nausea pills for my gun smith ......
:ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:..............................Hold on I mean WTF:)
 

Odinsraven

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Odinsraven..................plastic stock, fluted bbl on a .318? Some things are just wrong. I mean, on a 270 WSM maybe. Or a 7 STW, yes, but a 318? Like a mustache on a super-model. I hope your gunsmith has a strong constitution...........:)..................FWB
Well in these gender fluid times - anything is possible !


Want to see my plans for when this is a roaring success - Would love to build a modern 303 - and despite my letters to Lithgow in Auz - they firmly state no chance - Magazines being their reason not to - Hold my beer - how many magazines are there knocking around from the nr4 mk1 - for the love of sanity ! FML in extremis - you could build one of bren mags just a stronger spring - OK OK OK rant over !
 

mdwest

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I’m completely indifferent...

My Win M70 .375 H&H is a classic stainless with a synthetic stock... my M99 in 416 Taylor sports a matte duracoat finish and a wood stock...

Probably 1/3 of my safe has synthetic stocks.. and maybe 1/4 of my guns are stainless...

Just depends on what I find a good deal on and/or what I like at the time of purchase...
 

Odinsraven

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:ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:..............................Hold on I mean WTF:)
Trust me there are no lengths my depravity will go to keep the old cartridges going - This is a baby step on a long march !

Next is a 404j 1 1/2 or thereabouts - need to do some research on this one - to have a sub sonic 404J built off a 223 WSSM rifle - the barrel of the WSSM I am currently destroying by shooting up the remaining ammo I have ! So may have to be single shot as too much effort to configure a mag for it - 14 inch barrel with suppressor - should make a nice covert foxing rifle for around the hen house - 400 gr at just below speed of sound say 1100 fps so thats a handy 1000 ft lbs - indeed might be a useful rifle for an ambush on springbok - at one of the places I cull as we can do 50m easy in a couple of spots !
 

mdwest

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Newboomer

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Trust me there are no lengths my depravity will go to keep the old cartridges going - This is a baby step on a long march !

Next is a 404j 1 1/2 or thereabouts - need to do some research on this one - to have a sub sonic 404J built off a 223 WSSM rifle - the barrel of the WSSM I am currently destroying by shooting up the remaining ammo I have ! So may have to be single shot as too much effort to configure a mag for it - 14 inch barrel with suppressor - should make a nice covert foxing rifle for around the hen house - 400 gr at just below speed of sound say 1100 fps so thats a handy 1000 ft lbs - indeed might be a useful rifle for an ambush on springbok - at one of the places I cull as we can do 50m easy in a couple of spots !
Good God, man! What incarnation of abortion are you concocting? Maybe in an American caliber, but in a classic African caliber like a 404Jeff?? SACRILEGE!!! 404J deserves nothing less than prime Turkish walnut and deep blue steel in a crf action.
 

Odinsraven

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Lucifer has reserved me a special place in Hell that Dante never mentioned ......and as there is only a stairway to heaven and a highway to Hell ...got my bakkie ready !
 

Odinsraven

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Good God, man! What incarnation of abortion are you concocting? Maybe in an American caliber, but in a classic African caliber like a 404Jeff?? SACRILEGE!!! 404J deserves nothing less than prime Turkish walnut and deep blue steel in a crf action.
Well you in the colonies created the 223 wssm who's bolt face is 404j .......imagine if you had not sided with the French hired German mercenaries ...how much better life would have been Holland and Holland ....Westley Richards ....Lang your choice of rifles .......but Remmies Savage et al .........well what can I say ......
 
 

 

 

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