What Caliber Do You Know Best


May 11, 2003, 01:57 PM
I'm talking about the one you know the drop in inches at 300yds...how much windage gets put on if it's blowing 12mph from 5:30...the one you compete with, hunt with, kill paper with more often then not.

A member of another site I go to has started posting scenarios that require some pretty nifty tricks in order to aquire a firing solution. I thought to try the same thing here to a modest degree. This site presents some interesting challenges, namely there's no one particular cartridge or caliber that can be considered a "benchmark", and I want to get as many shooters as I can involoved with this.

So, what caliber? Any preferred bullet brand / weight? Is there a muzzle velocity that's demonstrated superior performance? Personally, I've got the most experience with .308 175gr SMK.

Let me know what's popular. Thanks in advance.


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Art Eatman
May 11, 2003, 04:40 PM
My father and uncle combined to put me in the .30-'06 business with an old 1917 Enfield, back in 1950. My uncle taught me about reloading, enjoying having "slave labor". :) I've loaded everything from round lead ball squirrel loads to 220-grain lead gas checks.

My pet rifle, today, is a Weatherby Mark V I bought in 1970. No. 2 Profile, 26" barrel. I've mostly loaded 150-grain bullets for my deer hunting. The rifle doesn't seem to care what brand of bullet it's fed, nor what brand of primer is used. Remington brass, Winchester brass, no le hace. I'm using the same old load of 4064 I began with in 1950, 52.5 grains.

I'm pretty good at range guesstimation, which gives me the basic attitude that anything inside of 500 yards belongs to me.

:), Art

May 11, 2003, 05:04 PM
But I spent a lot of time getting to know the energies and exterior ballistics of the .308 Winchester/7.62mm NATO, too.


Andrew Wyatt
May 11, 2003, 05:44 PM
i'd have to say .223. i shoot that a lot more than the others.

May 11, 2003, 06:29 PM
7.62 X 39

May 11, 2003, 07:12 PM
5.56x45 , lots of it.

Mike Irwin
May 11, 2003, 07:16 PM
Probably my .243 with groundhog loads.

But that was a LONG time ago.

May 11, 2003, 07:57 PM
As much as I talk crap, I admit I'm pretty much of the belief that you center a rifle at 200 yards, it will be about 1" high at 100 yards and 4" or 5" low at 300 yards and while I can shoot to 300 yards pretty regularly, I've only been able to shoot out past 300 yards one time. I typically shoot at 100 and 200 yards. And as Indiana doesn't allow deer hunting with centerfire rifles, the only game I get the opportunity to take is crow, raccoon, coyote and a few possum.

Lately, I've been shooting 243 and 25-06 the most followed by 270, 308 and 223. These rules apply pretty well to all of these cartridges.

Art Eatman
May 11, 2003, 09:58 PM
cratz2, you're pretty close, for sure. I've always sighted in for 2" high at 100; this puts me dead on at 200 and about 6" low at 300. Roughly...:)

The .25-'06 will shoot a tad flatter, and .243 bullets around 85 grains also.

One inch high at 100 for the hot-shot centerfire .22s is good, unless you're regularly reaching out to 300+.

:), Art

May 11, 2003, 10:51 PM
Truthfully, other than playing with my AR, I've never even shot the 223 out to 300 yards, certainly not for groups. I've even been getting away from the 308. Mostly because my nice 308 rifle is too durn heavy. The more I shoot at 200 and 300 yards, the more I like my sporter weight rifles just fine. There was a time, probably 5 to 8 years ago, that I would have sworn that guys with those skinny barrel rifles couldn't possibly keep up with an average shooter with a heavy barrel gun. My super duper goot shooting buddy has shown me how wrong I was time and time again.

In all honesty, .243, .25-06 and .270 seem to suit me just fine. Even if they are lady's calibers. :p

May 12, 2003, 11:24 AM
I just shot a 270 and 308 back to back last week.. The 270 with a recoil pad and the 308 with just a plastic buttplate.. Could have sworn that the 270 kicked more.

May 12, 2003, 11:48 AM
My M855 clone loads and 147gr surplus 7.62NATO rounds have pretty much the same trajectory. Even my 150gr FMJ out of my Model 70- 30/06 fly about the same path. I cheat.....:neener:

Art Eatman
May 12, 2003, 12:15 PM
.243 a "lady's cartridge"? Hmmm. I guess I gotta go buy me a dress, 'cause my wife's won't fit me. :D And after some 20+ Bambis and a bunch of coyotes and jacks and feral critters! Ah, the things I didn't know!

:D, Art

May 12, 2003, 12:27 PM
Drop that hem Art...What would your Grammaw think...;)

Hey at least your centerfire. I voted 22lr.:uhoh:

In my defense/excuse, I competed in rimfire for a bunch of years as a whippersnapper. Then I went to 1911's early and then shotgun competitions. My fault , I just haven't spent the time behind the rifle. Honesty hurts. I did for awhile get attached to the '06 in a model 70...until stolen and not insured.:(

Sentimental choice perhaps, but I think I'd do it again, or , if not '06 go .308.

May 12, 2003, 08:12 PM
Voted other. I know the .260 Remington the best at this moment. I have spent WAAYY too much time reloading for and shooting this little cartridge. Although I have taken no game with it, I know that anything within 300 yards is meat. That's the best there is in my book.

May 12, 2003, 08:37 PM
I voted 22lr.


There's nothing wrong with that. I know the 22LR out to about 300yds and that's far above what most people do. Its just fun to push the limits.

I especially like it when you pull the trigger.....hear the round go off and then wait about an hour for the bullet to hit.:D

May 12, 2003, 08:45 PM
Hey Art:

Never loaded lead balls but did you ever try the Hornady 100 gr. "Plinker"? It was a half jacket bullet with the appearance of a semi wad cutter pistol bullet. Boy did those things scoot! That was before anyone had their own chronographs so have no idea as to velocity, but I hit a running jackrabit with one at about 15 paces one day and it left a 3-4' circle looked like it had been spray painted red.

I bought my first '06 in about 1953 or so. Had prior experience with my rich uncle's (Sam) fine (if somewhat heavy) 30-06, the Garand. Been shootin' 'em ever since.

Favorite hunting load for my current pet hunting rifle, a pre-64 mod. 70, is the 165 gr. Nosler partitioned. Flat shooting and excellent whitetail or nilgai medicine w/proper bullet placement.

If I could have only one rifle, that would be it.


May 12, 2003, 09:37 PM
I put more .22LR downrange in a year than all other calibers combined. I've been shooting since about age four and ammo for the .270 was a little bit too much for my preteen budget. In my teen years I got some more bucks so I would shoot centerfire a lot more. Now as a college student, even though I have money, getting to the range is the problem. We can shoot rimfire on campus so I still get to shoot that the most. One of these days when I have a 600 yard range I might know something better than the .22LR...

May 12, 2003, 10:00 PM
5.45 X 39 mm, but its still a work in progess. Also the 7.62 X 39 mm.

Art Eatman
May 12, 2003, 10:03 PM
I used to do a lot of range-brass scrounging. After full-length resizing, I'd load Plinkers to about 2,500 or so for fire-forming and practicing eye-finger control.

My wild-eyed teenager load was the old flat-nosed 80-grain .32-20 bullet swaged down to .308 and loaded ahead of too much 3031. Probably 3,800, I'm guessing. I never shot anything past 100 yards, but it was a lot like a hand grenade.

:), Art

May 12, 2003, 10:11 PM
I wish I got into handloading early :( I still don't even own a press! :banghead:

May 12, 2003, 11:02 PM
:what: Surprised you didn't melt those 32-20 bullets and squirt 'em out the muzzle at those velocities:D .

I'm real familiar with that bullet, cast a many of them for a SAA I had. Never tried them in the '06, though.

I did melt one or three of the Plinkers in my 308 Norma barrel, however :uhoh: ...bummer; had to replace the barrel as it became most difficult to open the bolt w/full blown 180 gr loads.

Guess the good Lord took care of us younguns or we would never have survived our teens what with handloading and all.:)


May 12, 2003, 11:41 PM
I put a vote in for the .30-06. My favorite hunting rifle is a Model 70 Winchester and it seems to like to shoot 165 gr Sierra SBT in front of 56 grs of 4350 about the best of anything I've tried. It's a good load for the combined deer/elk seasons we've got out here in Colorado. I sight it in for a "dead-on" hold out to 300 yards. And I better have the equivalent of an backwoods benchrest before I take a shot out to that distance.

I really can't say I've ever considered windage into a big-game shot. I much more concerned over leading a shot if the target is moving, or not. Not to say I haven't considered windage, but usally in a "minute of prairie dog' type situation.

Now for something that my hunting pals and me have often wondered about is how bullets do plowing thru snowflakes. This subject usally comes up when we peer out of the camper in the pre-dawn, and see the flakes flying. We always wimp out of a chance to go out to the range during a snowstorm and do some tests, like a certain Saturday this past January:rolleyes:


May 12, 2003, 11:44 PM
A Purdue student wrote:We can shoot rimfire on campus

That's one thing I love about Indiana! Can you shoot rimfire at UCLA? :p

Heck, Purdue probably had gun-related (not of the anti- variety) classes up until 10 years ago.

May 13, 2003, 11:20 AM
cratz2- People from Kali or other socialist republics cannot believe that we shoot ON campus in the Armory building. I suppose not all hope is lost in the world! :D

May 13, 2003, 11:56 AM
For me it would be a toss up between the .243 and the 6.5 Swede. I cut my rifle reloading teeth on the .243 and spent many hours working on the Swede. The .22-250, .30-06, and the .308 seemed easy after years of cussing the first two.
I've used most brands of bullets. Sierra has given me very good results, but Hornadys have done just as well and a little cheaper.

May 13, 2003, 03:05 PM

Years and years of hunting experience.

Specificly with a savage 110b, 116fsack, and Remington 760 carbine.

Exclusively use speer 165 gr sbtsp handloads. 1.5 inches high at 100 yards = dead on at 200 and 7 inches low at 300. Excellent all around narth american game rifle/cartridge combo.

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