Debate time: .308 vs 30-06 for African game

Discussion in 'Firearms & Ammunition' started by LostinTexas_45, Mar 17, 2018.

  1. Yaseen

    Yaseen AH Veteran

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    I have a 308 and it works perfectly. I use a 160 hornady and I have had many hunts with it. Shot a zebra at 400m no problem.
     

  2. Ragman

    Ragman AH Elite

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    Six of one, a half dozen of the other. My moose hunting group is split down the middle. Three with the .30-06 (2 Remington 7600s and a BSA bolt gun) and three with the .308 (1 Browning BLR, 1 Savage 99 and a Remington 788). Between the six of us we've knocked down a mountain of moose over the years and none of us has noticed a difference in how effective each cartridge performs on them. My buddy with the 788 is one of the best hunters I have met and every years without fail he uses it to shoot a bull moose and a bull elk. The only other rifle he uses is a .35 Remington when he hunts bears, unless I include his .22-250 coyote rifle.

    I love the .30-06 and hunt with my .243 and 7mm RM,but I'll be on Team .308 cheerleading squad for life!
     
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  3. Daga Boy

    Daga Boy AH Veteran

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    There is virtually nothing to choose between these two in standard form.
    The .308 works on everything including wildebeest and eland at moderate ranges provided you use strong bullets. It also makes for a more compact rifle and a fantastic "bush carbine" as it works in a short action and was originally optimised for use in a 20" barrel. Recoil is also very low. I have shot most animals up to large Kudu with this claibre and know of clean kills on eland, giraffe and even buffalo.
    The 06 is more versatile because of its ability to use heavier bullets (not often done) but it also requires a longer action and longer barrel and in rifles of the same weight it kicks harder. As the rifling twist is generally different to that of a .308 the 06 works well with longer. heavier bullets (up to 220gr conventional or 180gr monometal) . It is more than enough gun for any african plains game with the exception of buffalo - although you can also take buffalo with it with good bullet placement if loaded correctly.
    The performance of the 06 can be improved quite a bit by reaming to Ackley improved. So modified it approaches a 300WM in performance and it is devastating on large antelope when loaded with long, heavy projectiles. Recoil can however be a problem in lighter rifles.
     
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  4. Ryan

    Ryan AH Fanatic

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    Either works great on PG, what's your preference. I used a 30-06 with 168 Barnes TTSX for eight animals in Namibia. All one shot kills. A 308 would have done the same. The place I hunted has two owners, one carries an old Remington In 30-06 for back up, the other has a newer Musgraves in 308.
     
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  5. Waterbuck2008

    Waterbuck2008 AH Senior Member

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    With modern ammo/bullet choices, it really comes down to the rifle you're most comfortable with, in my opinion. I've always been a .30-06 fan, but that's because it's what I was raised with. If the old man or grandpa would've had .308's instead of '06's, I would be just as happy with it as an all-purpose hunting chambering. But they didn't, so here I am - not a .270 in the house (I do have a .308)(y)
     

  6. Rolf_T

    Rolf_T AH Veteran

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    I may recall that 308 is not allowed into Moz due to its military background (same as 5,56 NATO)?
    That would maybe also be a consideration...
     
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  7. Waterbuck2008

    Waterbuck2008 AH Senior Member

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    That's a good point. It's the 7.62 NATO equivalent.
     

  8. flat8

    flat8 AH Enthusiast

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    I just had this debate with a buddy of mine I will be elk hunting with this fall. I'm partial to the .30-06 "just because," but my answer to him was that with our shooting ability and the expected range in the unit we drew, there is no real difference between the two. He ended up with a .308 because he preferred the shorter action.
     

  9. Bruce

    Bruce AH Elite

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    My first self bought rifle for hunting here in Africa was in 308. I used 180gr factory ammo and had no issues with up to Kudu size game. I hunted MOSTLY bush veld, where the ranges are not far, due to the denser bush. When moving out to the proper plains areas where longer range shots were required in the open, I preferred the 30-06. With age and lots of experience, I still have the 30-06 and use it only for bushveld. Open plains hunting ( Tanzania type) I take the 300Win Mag in 180gr.
     
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  10. Patton63

    Patton63 AH Veteran

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    A theme has developed over the course of this thread .. both are good calibers and, for the most part, it comes to personal preference. I’ve taken plains game with 190 gr all copper bullets fired from a 30-06 and a .300 Win Mag. I’ve also taken them with 165 gr Federal Trophy Copper bullets. All performed extremely well and the biggest trophy in the group (a nice kudu) was taken with the .308. Proper shot placement, choice of Bullet, and appropriate hunting ranges really drive the issue. With that in mind, the .308 is hard to beat.
     

  11. Don458

    Don458 AH Veteran

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    Both are great calibers But if you reload it is possible to get close to 300 win mag velocity in the 30-06. My favorite load is a 180 gr Hornady BTSP at 2727 fps. It is my whitetail rifle I know its a Hot load. But the groups were extremely tight and i have many shots around the 250-300yds range. So accuracy was more important. But if you do not reload than you are stuck with commercial ammo. Which some are great
     

  12. Don458

    Don458 AH Veteran

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    This I should add wasn’t even the max load data for that bullet
     

  13. 7x57Joe

    7x57Joe AH Veteran

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    My choice would be the .30'06 over .308 because of nostalgia, same with 7x57 over 7mm08, or 7x64 over .280 Rem. I guess I like the older rounds since I'm no spring chicken myself.:D They are all fine rounds, use what makes you confident and go forth and slay game. ;)
     
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  14. Ragman

    Ragman AH Elite

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    ^ I like this!^
     

  15. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Enjoying reading all the responses, experiences, and opinions of this choice!

    Would have been cool to have the survey question button on the top of the thread to keep track of the votes. Best I can tell from reading through everything, where guys actually made a choice in their post, its something like .30-06 (11 votes) and .308(7 votes)
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2018
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  16. LostinTexas_45

    LostinTexas_45 AH Member

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    You're right I should have made this a poll
     

  17. ve7poi

    ve7poi AH Enthusiast

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    180gr and heavier 30-06
    308 150 to 165gr premium bullets 308

    Used both couldn’t tell difference in performance both did outstandingly
     

  18. JakeH

    JakeH AH Enthusiast

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    I’m going to always lean toward the more performance end of the spectrum, even if the margins are slight. I’ve decided that on my trip to Africa I’ll be carrying a .30-06 with 200gr TBBC. Will I need that much? Probably not, but I’m not missing out on the opportunity of a lifetime because I wasn’t carrying enough gun.
     
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  19. Dewald

    Dewald AH Veteran

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    Having hunted most South African Plainsgame with 140gr Premium bullets from a 6,5x55, including Eland, Kudu, Gemsbuck and Blue wildebeest, I can't see that the .308 is not going to be enough gun.

    I recently aquired a Tikka CTR with a 1:11" twist, and shoot 165gr Sciroccos at 2640fps with it. Worked wonderfull on everything so far.

    Of course the .30-06 will work just as well
     

  20. Dr Ray

    Dr Ray AH Elite

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    Agreed that the 30/06 will jangle the heavier Bullets better.
     

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