Is there a perfect plains game calibre?

Longwalker

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I have no idea what "perfect" is, but a choice that would give me full confidence is the old 9.3x62 with the classic 286 gr. bullets at 2400 fps. I'm pretty sure it will kill any plains game reliably and even though it is not fast, it will have a flat enough trajectory for most situations. I just choose not to shoot at any game that is over 300 meters away. I have experienced several light, fast bullets do enough odd and unpredictable things after striking game that I'll choose the reliable penetration and bone breaking power of a bigger, somewhat slower bullet that always hangs together and is not overly challenged by passing through a humerus bone on the way to the vitals.
 

Ridgewalker

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I think I have the answer!
Duiker 223
Impala 243
Blesbok 257 Roberts
Nyala 7mm-08
Warthog 308
Kudu 7mm RM
Black wildebeest 30-06
Blue wildebeest 300 WM
Zebra 338 WM
Eland 9.3x62
Giraffe 375 H&H

Am I getting close?:D:ROFLMAO::LOL:(n)
 

BeeMaa

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I think I have the answer!
Duiker 223
Impala 243
Blesbok 257 Roberts
Nyala 7mm-08
Warthog 308
Kudu 7mm RM
Black wildebeest 30-06
Blue wildebeest 300 WM
Zebra 338 WM
Eland 9.3x62
Giraffe 375 H&H

Am I getting close?:D:ROFLMAO::LOL:(n)
Allow me to add..Red Hartebeest 270 WIN
 

johnnyblues

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I too will vote for the 300's either standard or WSM. Just choose the right bullet for the job. Barnes TTSX comes to mind.
 

Odinsraven

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8x68s would be perfect due to the wide range of bullet weights .......have taken a 8mm rem mag moat times for culling but have built up a stock of ammo at the local gun dealer ....the old girl is coming near to new barrel time and decided 8x68s gives the flexability ............
 

Michael Dean

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The problem you have is that 99% of the plains game can be taken with your typical Elk rifle be it a 7mm mag or 7x57 until you get to the Eland. An Eland is three times the size of an elk weighing in at between 1,500-2,000 pounds. Then it's time to revisit calibers and look long and hard at the 338's. I'm fighting to exact problem right now, I've book a ten animal safari and 9 of the ten animals can be taken with my 270 WSM. For the Eland I'm going to bring along a 338 Federal. Lot's of hard choices. I just don't want to shoot an Eland with a 270WSM and watch it walk off like nothing was bothering it. The 338 Federal has enough extra oomph to get the job done. In short, there is no perfect plains game rifle; there's just too big of a difference between the small antilopes and the Eland.
 
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Art Lambart II

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For the Eland I'm going to bring along a 338 Federal. Lot's of hard choices. I just don't want to shoot an Eland with a 270WSM and watch it walk off like nothing was bothering it. The 338 Federal has enough extra oomph to get the job done. In short, there is no perfect plains game rifle; there's just too big of a difference between the small antelopes and the Eland.

@Michael Dean IMO the 338 Federal is still to light for Eland depending on the shot angle offered. I know that many Eland have fallen to the 7x57 or a 30-06 but normally this only happens after the Eland has covered a great deal of ground and several hours of tracking. Personally I prefer a 35 Whelen or larger for Eland, but if your planning to take a big bodied bull then something like the 375 H&H or something that starts with a 4 and ends with Jeffery, Rigby or NE would be better provided you can shoot them well.
 

Michael Dean

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I've made up my mind, the Eland is going down with a 338 federal. I've already bought the brass, powder and bullets. The bullet is a 213 grain Hammer, and the powder is Varget. Norma brass.
 
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johnnyblues

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I think you'll be fine. Took my at 150 yards with a 300 WSM ran about 75 yards and dropped. 180 grain Barnes TSX ammo. As always shot placement is critical.
 

BeeMaa

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@Michael Dean IMO the 338 Federal is still to light for Eland depending on the shot angle offered. I know that many Eland have fallen to the 7x57 or a 30-06 but normally this only happens after the Eland has covered a great deal of ground and several hours of tracking. Personally I prefer a 35 Whelen or larger for Eland, but if your planning to take a big bodied bull then something like the 375 H&H or something that starts with a 4 and ends with Jeffery, Rigby or NE would be better provided you can shoot them well.
I agree with AL2 on the Eland.
One gun safari = 375 (H&H, Ruger, Wetherby, RUM...etc, your choice) or .400+ (again your choice Rigby, Jeff, RM...)
Use solids to take the smaller stuff to minimize hide damage, and softs on larger game.
As always, using a quality bonded soft bullet such as Swift A-Frame, Barnes TSX or Norma Oryx will make your PH very happy.
In turn, making you happy with all the game on the ground.

Only one caveat -this is provided you can accurately shoot a 375 and up.
If you are best with a 338 (or smaller like 270WSM) caliber, you may want to wait to get closer or for a "perfect broadside" shot.
 

Art Lambart II

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I'm sure the 338 Federal will work, just remember to have your boots laced on tight and a flashlight in your pack with plenty of extra batteries.

Hammers need a long handle to be efficient. Your 213 grain bullet is a light weight hammer for a .338 and that 308 case is definitely a short handle but hit a big nail enough time with a light hammer and you'll still get the job done.
 

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