Is the .338 RUM Dead?

Discussion in 'Up To .375' started by Saul, May 6, 2019.

  1. CTDolan

    CTDolan AH Elite

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    Always been in awe of the .340 Weatherby, ever since I first came across the cartridge 40-some years ago. Never had one, though. Always went for the .375 H&H instead. But, were I to acquire a .338 (something I have long wanted to do), I'd almost certainly go with the Winchester as it is readily available in rifles at a cost I can afford (it is shocking what some .338 Win Mag rifles will sell for, used, much less than some of the more popular calibers such as a .300 Win Mag...you've got to look but they are out there). The one .340 Weatherby I might be able to afford is a Vanguard, assuming that it has been chambered in the cartridge.
     

  2. CTDolan

    CTDolan AH Elite

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    Just found this. Heck of a deal for a Mark V. This would be a great rifle for Alaska. It's been ported but Mag-Na-Port slots aren't as offensive as radial porting, in my experience.

    https://www.gunbroker.com/item/809697989
     

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  3. Saul

    Saul AH Enthusiast

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    I reached out to MRC and I am waiting to hear back. It seems like they should be able to chamber their ASR rifle in the RUM, and it does have a wood stock. Who knows, if they can swing it and it is a good gun, I might grab another in .505 Gibbs...

    Also, it looks like Barnes loads the .338 RUM at 2910 with their LRX. I would prefer for closer plains game range if it was in a heavier weight and also the TTSX but whatever. Weatherby loads the .340 at 2940 with the Nosler Partition which is pretty damn close. I am sure a little more velocity can be wrung out of the RUM.

    Nosler ammo is surprisingly weak, with the RUM running 2850 with the 250gr Accubond and 2600 with the 300gr Accubond. Surprisingly, they load the .340 at 2540 with the 300gr Accubond and load the .338 Lapua at 2650 with the 300gr Accubond.

    Seems to me that depending on who is loading, the RUM, Wby, and Lapua are all within 50fps of each other.
     

  4. Hogpatrol

    Hogpatrol AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Saul, you can take those factory stated velocity numbers and a few bucks and get a Starbucks. From this chair, unless one knows the EXACT loading parameters, rifle action, barrel length and twist, these numbers are basically useless. Buy the rifle, shoot the factory loads over a chrono and go from there. Anyone's call but factory ammo should be the last choice for hunting Africa.

    Just for shits and giggles, here's some more gasoline on the fire:

    https://hsmammunition.com/by-caliber/
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2019

  5. spike.t

    spike.t AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2013 AH Ambassador

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  6. Saul

    Saul AH Enthusiast

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    I most certainly agree, I was just showing for comparisons sake that the three rounds are virtually the same velocity-wise. Nosler and Barnes have been good enough to publish full load data for all of their cartridges, including velocities for different powders all out of a stated barrel length. Nosler even shows which loads were the most accurate.
     
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  7. thriller

    thriller AH Fanatic

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    the rifles arent dead but the owners died of blunt force trauma about 5 rounds in. haha
     
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  8. Hogpatrol

    Hogpatrol AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    I find it interesting that some of Nosler's load data for the 338 RUM is for rifles with custom/aftermarket barrels. They list a 26" Wiseman and a 24" H.S. Precision. The 28 Nosler and 6.5 Creedmoor data both specify a Pac-Nor barrel.
     
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  9. TOBY458

    TOBY458 AH Elite

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    Ross Seyfried caused me to part with many dollars over the years! He was and will always be my favorite gun writer!
     
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  10. JimP

    JimP AH Elite

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    I remember way way back when gun writers were necking up the .300 Weatherby to accept that .338 caliber bullet and fell in love with it then. Then the factory rifles appeared from Weatherby and I drooled all over the magazine articles that were written about it. Then came the Bank Of Boulder Colorado and their offer of a Weatherby rifle of your choice for depositing XXX amount of dollars and just letting it sit in their bank for a few years but I just couldn't part with that amount of money. Then in 1996 I was cruising through a local gun shop and something caught my eye. There was a .340 Weatherby with a fiberglass stock sitting there calling my name. It was a stainless model and one of the first to be built back here in the US. I had to have it so I plunked down a number of $100 bills and walked out of the store a happy man.

    It took me a few years to find just the right scope for the right price but I found it. Then came the ammo, a couple of boxes of factory 250 grain and 200 grain loads. But then I saw the premium ammo and I had to try that. This rifle loves the Barnes 225grain lodings. So after buying a couple of boxes of the Weatherby ammo with that loading I started to reload them myself. This rifle can shoot all day into a 1/2" group at 200 yards, or as long as I can shoot it. It came with a removable Weatherby muzzle brake which makes shooting it feel like a .30-06 as far as recoil.

    This rifle has taken 8 African plains game animal, 20 or so elk, numerious mule deer, a few antelope, a Utah bison, black bear, and anything else that I have pointed it at. After missing a 500 yard shot on a Arizona coues deer in 2016 I thought about taking it on another coues deer hunt in 2017, but it isn't a real mountain rifle. All the animals that have been shot with it were down in one shot except for a gemsbok that I screwed up on.

    For me there is one .338 caliber rifle and that is the .340 Weatherby..........But then perhaps that .338-378 might be calling my name.
     
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  11. Saul

    Saul AH Enthusiast

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    I have always seen the .338-378 as just too much of a good thing for a hunting rifle and not quite good enough for a serious long range build. I would much rather have a .338 Lapua Improved if I were to step up to that type of power. However, if you could handle the .338-378 in a hunting weight rifle, it sure would be one hell of a killer.
     

  12. One Day...

    One Day... GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Amen to that(y)

    In my experience (not meant as "expertise" but as "I have seen it with my own eyes"), a safe rule of thumb near sea level is to subtract about 100 fps from most current factory ammo specs, although the recent proliferation of inexpensive chronographs has influenced the factories in being a little more realistic in their marketing...

    Interestingly though, and not surprisingly, now that I clock everything at 7,000 ft above sea level (I live in Flagstaff AZ), in most cases factory ammo clocks faster than advertised, and of course everything shoots flatter. Just interesting how air density truly has an impact, although I would have never expected it to be so significant 10 ft from the muzzle (where the chrono screens are)...

    This being said since all factory specs seem to suffer from the same enthusiasm, I agree with Saul that the comparisons are still relevant. Just subtract 100 fps from all of them :E Rofl:
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2019
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  13. Witold Krzyżanowski

    Witold Krzyżanowski AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    I think the same as Red Leg.
     
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  14. colorado

    colorado AH Fanatic

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    My advice buy a nice 375 H&H and have it rechambered to 375 Weatherby. It will do everything a 338 will and more and you can fire factory 375 H&H through it as well. A 300g A-Frame at 2800 fps is hard to beat. Mine is a Rem XCR II with a 24" barrel and weighs 7.5 lbs unloaded with scope. Recoil is pretty mild.

    [​IMG]
     

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  15. Ray B

    Ray B AH Elite

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    For a subject that on the surface appears to be very objective and fact based, cartridges are very prone to the theory of relativeness. I would say Relativity, but that has special application not involved with cartridges. What is relative is the perception of how one cartridge compares to another. In addition there is the type of gun that fires the cartridge. Add to this the incentives that sway the results of those that publish stories and reviews of various cartridges. What should be a very objective conclusion transforms into a subjective opinion.

    We seek to compare cartridge A to cartridge B. But the underlying problem is that several variables are involved that skew the results so as to make the desired comparison invalid.
     

  16. One Day...

    One Day... GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    100% agreed.

    This is why I try to ground my thinking in:

    1) clear definition of purpose: what is the rifle intended to do? Example: a perfect deer rifle is unlikely to be a perfect elk rifle; a perfect single rifle for anything, anywhere, anytime (the premise in the Ross Seyfried article) is unlikely to be ideal for anything but the upper range of "anything" etc.

    2) objective facts: data, not opinion. Example: measured velocity for given bullet weights, MPBR, energy (for what it means!), calculated recoil in a given weight rifle, practical bullet weights range, etc.

    For example, my $xx,xxx custom Griffin & Howe .340 Wby met the criteria "anything" :) (per the Ross Seyfried article that put the big .33 madness in me) but failed blatantly the criteria "anywhere" and "anytime." It became pretty obvious pretty fast that hand rubbed linseed on French walnut and rust blue on steel were less than perfect in fly camps in rainy Newfoundland or British Columbia :(.

    This is why my second .340 is stainless steel (not silver coating on carbon steel, mind you :sneaky:) and kevlar stock. Now THAT meets the definition of purpose: anything, anywhere, anytime (even though it fails miserably the criteria of old-world craftsmanship and beauty).

    But it would be less than perfect for buff or lion (although I understand that a large number of them were/are collected with a big .33 of one persuasion or another...) and it sure makes a miserable 50 yd deer rifle in dense woods (what with length, weight, recoil, non-detachable scope, etc.).

    In reality, it should (that word :E Rofl:) be fairly easy to reach a very objective conclusion: one must be really clear on the stated purpose. For example, if hunter A does not want to shoot much past 250 yd, and/or likes to click in corrections or likes to compensate visually for drop, and/or is concerned with recoil, the .338 Win is a much better choice than the .338 RUM/.340 Wby etc.
    Conversely, if Hunter B wants a "point and click" MPBR out to 300 yd, may want to take a shot at 350 yd in open tundra or desert or open hillsides, and does not mind added recoil, the .338 RUM/.340 Wby etc. objectively are a better choice, even though the .338 Win - or even the .338 Federal for that matter - can also do the job albeit not as easily.

    So, is there much to choose ballistically between .338 RUM/.340 Wby/.338 Lapua, etc.? Not really.
    Do they have added capabilities compared to .338 Win.? Objectively yes: they DO fly faster, flatter and further and they do hit harder. These are facts.
    Do you value these added capabilities? It all depends on your definition of purpose...
     
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  17. meigsbucks

    meigsbucks AH Fanatic

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    A similar wildcat, was one of the late, great Elmer Keith’s favorite rounds. I think it was called the .338/78 KT. A 250gr bullet, at 3000 fps with 100gr of H4831.
     

  18. One Day...

    One Day... GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Amen!

    Often have I thought, and often do I still think, that a stainless steel .375 Wby would be IT. Truth be told, if CZ was making a stainless 550, I think that very likely the .340 Wby Mark V would have migrated toward one of my sons, or found another home. The .375 would be legal on DG, which the .340 ain't; with 235 gr TSX it would do anything the .340 does; with .300 gr slugs it would be anything the .375 H&H is and more; and with .350 gr slugs it would poach deep into .416 territory.

    Africa was not on my radar in my early .340 days, but if only ONE rifle could remain after AOC convinces us of the foolishness of our ways, a rifle built on:
    (1) stainless steel Montana PH action with
    (2) CFR,
    (3) true bolt-mounted, firing pin-blocking safety, and
    (4) double square bridge with machined dovetail, wearing
    (5) stainless steel 26" barrel, with
    (6) barrel band front sight,
    (7) barrel band front swivel stud, and
    (8) integral or barrel-ban rear sight block, in
    (9) kevlar stock
    would be mine...

    I know, I know, nothing the .375 Wby does cannot be done with the .375 H&H :E Rofl:

    Insert a new quarter in the jukebox and dance again :A Band:
     
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  19. Saul

    Saul AH Enthusiast

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    I have heard that the .375 Wby has a nasty kick far beyond the typical Wby cartridges. Or am I thinking of the .378 Wby? Both probably fit this description.

    Other than a select few Wby cartridges (257, 300, 340) I find the rest to be too much of a good thing or impractically overbore.

    Then again, the same could be said for any supercar with a big engine. They are capable of speeds that will never be reached legally on roads, they do not get you from point A to point B any better than a much cheaper car, they have power that is downright dangerous for those without the experience to properly handle it, they burn a disgusting amount of gas for very little real world gains. Still, none of these points matter if you have a Ferrari in the garage.
     

  20. One Day...

    One Day... GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    You are thinking .378 Wby. Essentially a belted .416 Rigby case necked down to .375. Vicious on both ends, although those who shoot it well find it devastating on game ... as one would expect. But there are likely more folks shooting it poorly and contributing to the Weatherby dark myth in Africa, than there are folks shooting it well...

    The .375 Wby is a .375 H&H with body taper removed. Actually one of its attractive characteristics is that as colorado said, you can shoot .375 H&H ammo in a .375 Wby chamber. All it does, is fire-form the case into the straight taper.

    Funny you list the .257, .300 and .340 Wby, these are the three that I have. Truth be told, the .375 Wby should be added to that list (and I am sure some folks would add the .270 and 7 Wby). To the point that Weatherby had discontinued offering ammo for the .375 Wby in order to help launch the .378, but they have resumed offering it owing to demand apparently high enough to justify production...
     
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