300 WSM Recoil Issue


August 8, 2006, 02:46 PM
Hello everyone,

A good friend of mine who recently purchased a .300 WSM has been whining about the recoil for some time now. After several months of me telling him what a baby he is ( :evil: ), he finally got sick of my poking fun and offered me to try it.

Now I have shot .300 WSM’s before, and I do not have any problems with them. I’m not sensitive to recoil at all, so I didn’t think it would be a problem…

But… OUCH! :what: I think something is wrong, probably headspacing. Anyone else know of any reason the recoil would be so bad? Or how to check the headspacing? Thanks!

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August 8, 2006, 02:55 PM
I've never heard of a headspace to recoil relationship. From what I understand, headspacing is a matter of safety and wear. As for an explanation, I'd suggest that the stock doesn't fit either of you properly. My buddy Timbokhan has a .270 Ruger M77 with the crapulent Zytel stock that gives me brusies whereas a metal butplated M44 does not! There are other factors including what position you were in while shooting. The prone is notorious for it's recoil enhancement properties whereas the offhand helps "tame the beast". The rifle's weight is a significant factor as well, the lighter the heavier the recoil will be. I've used a PAST pad that fits over your shirt to great results. I've also installed a Simms pad on my .308 Win and that made a huge difference to the comfort.

To answer your secondary question, headspacing is checked with go no-go gauges which are availible at Brownells and Midway (among others). If your brass isn't showing signs of excessive pressure and your action feeds properly, you've likely got no problem with headspace.

August 8, 2006, 03:03 PM
Headspace seems to me to be (I could be wrong) like an unlikely culprit. If the headspace was insufficient you would probably have a hard time closing the bolt on factory ammo. If there was excessive headspace I don't see how it could cause excessive velocity.

You might try checking the velocity with a chronograph, but I suspect that it's just a problem of the fit of the gun or its weight.

Be sure you're not shooting the wrong ammo through the rifle :neener:

August 8, 2006, 03:05 PM
How much does the rifle weigh, and what kind is it?

I've also never heard of a headspacing/recoil connection... but two of the worst recoils I ever felt were a 24/47 Mauser (8mm) which had the worst fitting stock and buttplate I've ever encountered, that gun just battered me through 5 rounds. And the other was a very very light single-shot "trail gun" in .375 H&H. Even standing that gun was a monster because of the size and weight.

Also, what ammo was he using? Some unusually hot loads?


JesseL beat me to it by two minutes ;)

August 8, 2006, 03:08 PM
I think the problem here is TWO wah wah babies!!:evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:

August 8, 2006, 03:54 PM
It's a Remington 700 XCR. It weighs a good 7.5 pounds or so, not including scope. Nothing superlight. And I've never had problems with Remington 700s not fitting me correctly. It is a comfortable rifle to hold, just not shoot heh.

As I understood it, but must be misinformed, extra headspace allows the chambered round to "jump" back giving a sharp hit when it settles back. However none of our brass shows any signs of overpressure.

Terrierman, guess that's always possible too! Maybe I shouldn't poke fun of my friends too much :o

August 8, 2006, 06:28 PM
As I understood it, but must be misinformed, extra headspace allows the chambered round to "jump" back giving a sharp hit when it settles back.

Was whoever told you that wearing a set of hip waders?

August 8, 2006, 07:02 PM
Whoever told you that about headspace was as my dad used to say 'full of plinky dust'.

I'd agree it is probably a stock shape or very hot load issue. I have a Tikka T3 in 300 WSM and don't find the recoil objectionable

August 8, 2006, 07:27 PM
300WIN and 330WSM kick. Maybe you just forgot how much?

Either that or the recoil pad is hardend and needs replacement.

That rifle is only about 7 to 7.5 pounds. That isn't much to counter the 300WSM. I think your friend needs to research before buying. My buddy wanted a 300WIN btu I convinced him to shoot mine first. One shot and he bought a 30-06.

wayne in boca
August 8, 2006, 09:15 PM
My Winchester Model 70 Classic Featherweight in .300 WSM is lighter than that and recoils about like a .30-06,no problem shooting all day.Sounds like a stock shape or fit issue.I have an old Remington Model 721 in .270 that about jars your teeth loose when you shoot it.Some of the Monte Carlo stocks seem designed to look good,not work good.

August 8, 2006, 09:51 PM
You still haven't told us what position you were shooting from. I'm at a loss to explain how you don't get battered by other Remington 700's yet this one abuses you. Especially given that according to their website that thing comes standard with an R3 pad which is pretty soft. The only thing I can see that's different seems to be the Houge rubber overmolding however that too typically reduces complaints about recoil. I'm not sure how good your form is but errors with the .223 don't punish the same way as the bigger bores.

August 8, 2006, 10:47 PM
The 300 WSM does have a healthy recoil, but if the stock has the R3 recoil pad - which is a Limbsaver pad - the recoil should be tolerable. If you are shooting from a bench, wear a shoulder pad - Past and Limbsaver make very good ones. In the field, recoil won't be noticed.

August 9, 2006, 12:05 PM
I add my vote to those who think the stock is a major contributor. Many articles have been written on this subject. Other than restocking, I would strongly suggest two things:
1. a quality recoil pad installed, and
2. the installation of a Mercury Recoil suppressor http://www.ninety-eight.net/chr/

When my daughter was 11, and wanted hunt big game, we decided on a 270. A friend custom stocked a Remington action, Pachmayr Decelerator pad, and the mercury recoil suppressor. I loaded 130 grain bullets with IMR4227 as a light load. When she shot it, she commented with a big smile “ Not bad!!!!! less than the 6mm and only slightly more than the 222.” In a short time she worked up to shooting max/accuracy loads in 140gr.

August 9, 2006, 12:44 PM
my mod 70 plastic stock 300wsm does not kick me as much as my mod 600 in .308.
my advice is borrow a marlin guide gun in 45-70 load it with bufflo bore or garret rounds fire a few then switch back to the .300wsm, you'll think your shooting a .22!:D

August 16, 2006, 02:50 AM
My buddy Timbokhan has a .270 Ruger M77 with the crapulent Zytel stock

lol, excellent use of the word "crapulent", my friend.

Desk Jockey
August 16, 2006, 07:38 AM
I have a Model 70 in 300 WSM, laminated wood stock. I got it a deal on it because someone bought it new, put a few rounds through it, went back to the gun shop and traded it for a 30-06. It has a healthy kick, but it's nothing horrible.

At the range, I wear one of those pads that fits over your shirt. They're great. I'll shoot 20 to 40 rounds at a time without a problem. When shooting at elk or a mulie, I just don't notice the recoil.

Winchester/Olin has had some hot loads leave the factory. The first box I shot from this gun (3 yrs ago) was one of them. Bolt was stiff due to expanded cases and a few primers were popped. I called Winchester and gave them the lot number off the box, they confirmed that it was a known 'problem child'.

Buy a pad for the range.

August 17, 2006, 07:29 PM
Simm's recoil pad........Limbsaver!

August 18, 2006, 06:31 AM
So much of what you're experiencing is highy subjective. Of course, there can be no question that a .300 WSM light hunting rifle with no brake is capable of delivering meat on either end ;) . My own .300 WSM rifle weighs 18.5 lbs and has a Badger Ordnance compensator on it. Still, it's a bit punchy. Nonetheless, mentality, which has so much to do with how we deal with recoil, is highly variable in modern, civilized men/women.

Aside from this, the only explanation that I can come up with and that hasn't been heretofore submitted deals with the condition of the barrel's throat. If it's unusually rough, then your chamber pressure and, therefore, recoil will increase decidedly!

August 18, 2006, 09:11 AM
its all physics...the .300wsm has about 3300 lbs of force at the muzzle. So the bullet is going forward at 3300lbs, then Newton explains somewhere that the stock is going into your shoulder at 3300 lbs. I cant explain it anymore, i got a b in physics. But i do know that i had a Savage 16 in .300 and after 12 rounds i had a bruise for a week on my shoulder. I sold that damn thing and got two enfield and an sks.

August 18, 2006, 02:50 PM
I have no idea what the deal with his Remington 700 XCR is! :confused:

Heck I shot a 700 SPS in .300 WSM just this past weekend for the sake of comparison, and it does not feel like this gun. The stocks seem the same, the rifles are almost identitcal as far as I can tell except for the stainless barrel on the XCR. Even the scopes are close in weight.

Thanks for the enlightening on the headspace issue though :)

As for the recoil, yes the BULLET has a force of 3300 ft. lbs at the muzzle, but that's due to the bullets extreme velocity. It's been a while since high school physics, but I think Force = Mass * Velocity, or something like that. The rifle recoiling backwards towards you has nowhere near 3300 ft. lbs of energy. THAT would hurt BIG time :eek:

For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. The force propeling the bullet forward also acts backwards on the rifle. However the bullet weighs much MUCH less than the rifle, so the force does not produce the same force (or acceleration).

Others may be able to shed more light on the subject, I'm not a physics major! I'm more of a dork - computer science :)

August 18, 2006, 02:58 PM
Kinetic energy = Mass * velocity * velocity / 2

Momentum = Mass * velocity

Force = Mass * Acceleration


August 9, 2007, 11:30 AM
Limbsaver is a good investment to enjoy this cartridge.

August 9, 2007, 11:44 AM

Wow if you had just waited another 3 hours and 16 minutes, your post would have been exactly 1 year after the original posting of this thread.

August 9, 2007, 11:48 AM
the recoil should not be that bad. An 8 pound rifle (including scope and ammo) should be manageable. Not saying that you shoot 100 rounds at a time, but 20 accurate shots without flinching should be possible. Luckily, it's not yours and you don't hve to shoot it if you don't like it.

AR Hammer
August 9, 2007, 02:22 PM
I love my .300 WSM's, especially in the AR-10 format where recoil is about as much as a bolt .223...:neener:

Like any magnum, Recoil is going to be dependent on the mass of the rifle and how much energy absorption you have on your shoulder...

Soda straw thin barrels on 7 pound rifles with hard butt plates, especially if the stock is too long for you, are going to kick the crap out of you!

Throw some weight in the stock, and put on a good silicone gel recoil pad and see what you think about the recoil then...

If you are shooting off a bench most of the time, consider a bench hook to take some of the recoil off your shoulder.

August 10, 2007, 09:49 PM
I bought a almost new Savage 300 WSM from a guy on the net that only shot one box of ammo in it the reason he sold it to me was because of the heavy recoil. It is the model 110 with sporter barrel. after I shot it maybe 30 times I put a muzzel break on it because it did have a hell of a recoil for me too. It kicks just as much as my 300 mag did before it got a break on it too.
Recoil can be one of the main causes of poor accuracy.

August 10, 2007, 10:17 PM
How about trading it for a model 52 win. bull barrel 13lb. target rifle and shoot 22 shorts in it ? JUST KIDDING ;)

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