Which calibre

Discussion in '.375 & Up' started by Franko, Aug 7, 2018.

  1. Franko

    Franko New Member

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    My first thread, so I apologise as it has probably been asked 1000 times, but my search didn't find much.

    If I hunt Buff, what is the most prctical min calibre I can bring? Not the legal min, but the most sensible min calibre?

    I have a 9.3 x 62, so will need to step up to a greater cal. A 375 H & H would suit me here in Aus, but is it enough?

    Thanks,

    Frank
     

  2. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    .375 h&h will so just fine. Good bullets and you are set.
     

  3. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    If you have a PH, I’d ask him. Dr Kevin Robertson really likes his 9.3x62 and has taken many buffalo with it, but he is an expert at shooting and buffalo anatomy. Some countries do not allow it. 375 H&H should be a good starting point. Recoil goes up substantially after that. Remember, you’re going to have a P H with a backupgun if you error or shoot a particularly tough animal.
     

  4. cpr0312

    cpr0312 AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Welcome to AH!!

    .375 H&H will be just fine with premium ammo!!
     
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  5. JPbowhunter

    JPbowhunter AH Veteran

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    I personally think its pointless buying a 375 if you have a 9.3

    As has been said, depending on where you go you should be able to use your 9.3.
     
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  6. Franko

    Franko New Member

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    Thanks all. If I buy a 375 or bigger, I'll be selling the 9.3.
     

  7. matt85

    matt85 AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    a 375 has a fair bit more power then a 9.3 (300gr at 2500fps vs 286gr at 2200fps). both will work though so as long as its legal and your shooting skill is up to snuff the 9.3 will be fine.

    but I prefer bigger guns and knowing what I know today I would use a 416 RM with a light fast mono-metal bullet.

    -matt
     

  8. meigsbucks

    meigsbucks AH Veteran

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    .375 H&H... Flatter trajectory, more energy, no questions about legality, ammo availability and variety of loads. (NOTE: The .375 Ruger has the same attributes but ammo isn't as widely distributed and there are a limited number of loads available.) About the only downside is that it will have about 30% more recoil than your 9.3. Just use good bullets and learn to shoot it. You'll be fine.
    For buffalo, I personally prefer something that begins with a .4 but that's just me.
    I've asked my three PH's and numerous PH's at the shows what works best and they all pretty much say the same thing: More than half bring .375's and the other half bigger but you have to be able to shoot it well.
     
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  9. JPbowhunter

    JPbowhunter AH Veteran

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    I read that 450/400 and 404 jeffery when using milder loads actually recoil less than a 375H&H. Is there any truth in that?
     

  10. Ray B

    Ray B AH Fanatic

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    It would depend on how MILD the loads are. the 375 with 300 gr at 2600 fps compared to the 404 with 400 gr at 2200; generally the 404 rifle will be slightly heavier; so from my experience with both, it's pretty much a wash- they both get your attention when fired.
     

  11. IvW

    IvW AH Elite

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    If you hunt Buffalo were it is legal to use the 9.3x62 load Woodleigh 320 gr bullets. Although it has been used by professionals on many DG it is not ideal for the visiting/paying client and is certainly not desirable when having to follow up on wounded DG.

    375 H&H is a better choice, load that with 350 gr bullets for the buffalo and have some 300 gr bullets for all the PG. Fitted with a variable 1-6x scope it has reigned as the King of the medium bores and the single most versatile caliber a visiting hunter can bring on an African safari. Very effective in the right hands.

    If Cape buffalo is the main target animal, I would step up to the good old 404 Jeffery loaded with 450 grn Woodleighs. Mild in recoil but devastatingly effective on Cape buffalo. Again fitted with a 1-6 x DG scope you will have what can only be described as the ideal combination for hunting Cape buffalo. Much better momentum and penetration which will allow you to also take full frontal shots at large buffalo bulls which would be marginal at best with a smaller caliber.

    So to sum up, I would keep the 9.3x62 you have and use that for all my plains game hunting and then get a 404 Jeff for the Cape buffalo. Two classic cartridges that have proven themselves and both of their effectiveness on game cannot be questioned.
     

  12. matt85

    matt85 AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    450/400 NE has about the same recoil as a 375 H&H. typical performance is 400gr at 2050fps.

    404 Jeffery is typically loaded similar to the 416 RM and 416 Rigby. typical load is 400gr at 2300fps. however both the 404 Jeffery and 416 RM can be pretty easy to load down. I prefer the 416 RM because .416" bullets are much more available and in a pinch you can make 416 RM from 375 H&H brass. the 416 Rigby is harder to load down but much easier to load up (you can get some impressive speeds!).

    -matt
     
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  13. PHOENIX PHIL

    PHOENIX PHIL AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    And quite impressive recoil too however.
     

  14. Franko

    Franko New Member

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    If I could find one, I'd buy a 404J. On paper my gut says it's about right. Unfortunately ammo and rifles in 404J are hard to find in Aus, hence my question to the forum. No shortage of choice for 375 H & H and 46 Rigby is also well represented by makers, but it seems the 404J has fallen out of favour.
     

  15. JPbowhunter

    JPbowhunter AH Veteran

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    Cz 550 have one i think, you could also do a rebarrel project.
     

  16. matt85

    matt85 AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    the 404 Jeffery and the 416 RM are pretty similar only the 416 RM uses a more common bullet diameter. there is nothing a 404 Jeffery can do that a 416 RM cant do and that includes being downloaded to produce less recoil. the two cartridges produce the same recoil when loaded to the same levels.

    the best budget DG rifle on the market is easily the Winchester M70 "Safari express" chambered in 416 RM. its affordable at around $1200-$1300, has an excellent trigger, a smooth bolt, a reliable Mauser action, perfect safety design, and isnt too light or too heavy for its caliber. to get an equal or better rifle you would need to spend at least twice as much money.

    -matt
     
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  17. Franko

    Franko New Member

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    Good to know, thanks Matt. A search of CZ available in Aus showed two variants of their DG rifles and only two cals 375 and 458 w.m. slim pickings over here. I may need to re-barrel or import one in 416RM.

    Have never been a fan of Winchesters, just never really grabbed me when I handled them, but at least they are available here.
     

  18. Tally-Ho Hunting Safaris

    Tally-Ho Hunting Safaris SPONSOR Since 2015 AH Enthusiast

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    Hi there
    Legally 375 but no problem with the 9.3x62
    Have shot plenty buff with that calibre and its great for the rest of plains game too

    Regards
     
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  19. BeeMaa

    BeeMaa AH Veteran

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    375H&H or 416Rigby - Not gonna go wrong with either.
    Mild (relatively) recoil, ammo readily available and so are the rifles.
     

  20. ActionBob

    ActionBob AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Except to be one of the nostalgic calibers of old Africa;)

    @Franko If you want to stick with CZ, go with one of their standard calibers. Sounds to me like you are going to want a 416 Rigby.

    I was just on a water buff hunt in the NT and borrowed rifles. The outfitter had 375's and an open sighted 458 win mag. After many shots on the first buff with the 375 and finishing him with the 458, I just used the open sighted 458 for the next 3 bulls.

    However the issue was not the caliber, but the Federal blue box 270 grain ammo that just would not penetrate. The outfitter was saving money by having clients use 6 or 7 shots of $100/box ammo rather than buying premium ammo for $190 and taking a buff with one, two, or maybe 3 shots..... It takes penetration.
     
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