Long action or short action??? How do I tell?


December 29, 2003, 03:27 PM
I just bought a used Remington 700 in .308. How do I tell if it's long action or short action?

Remington's web site offers no clues.

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Bob Locke
December 29, 2003, 04:30 PM
The length of the action is determined by the length of the case.

A .308 is a short case, so you've got a short action.

December 29, 2003, 06:51 PM
i thought the action being referred to on a model 700 would be the amount of movement required by the operator to load the next round....not the rounds size itself??

December 29, 2003, 06:59 PM
Bob Locke
In general you are mistaken, as for Remington I can not say for sure.
It is true you can't get a long case say 30-06 in short action but you can get short case ammo in long action say a .243 I personally owned a long action Savage 110 in .243 yet now they have short actions available.

December 29, 2003, 07:04 PM
i stand corrected....i did find on remingtons web site that the .308 is short action.....explain to me the difference between a short action load compared to a WSM load.

December 29, 2003, 07:46 PM

The differenct between a Winchester 308 and a Winchester Short Magnum ,in 308, is a few thousand PSI, with a velocity difference of about 400 fps* in some loads.

Evidently, the WSM is an attempt to put a Winchester 300 Magnum in a short action rifle*.

I don't know if the action of the WSM needs to be stronger then the normal action of Win. 308.

Perhaps our experts could add or correct this, Please!

* Lyman 48th addition Reloading Handbook



December 29, 2003, 10:15 PM
Long or Short does indeed refer to the stroke length of the bolt.
a short action such as a .223 or .308 can have a shorter stroke, than a long action for say a .300 win mag, then you have Magnum actions for .375 H&H and .458 Lott etc...
the shorter action means the fire arm itself can be slightly shorter as well, Think of a Rem mod 7 in .308 as compared to a Mod 700 in 30-06.

December 29, 2003, 10:23 PM
Thanks for all the help. I was able to finally find the answer on Remington's web site. I just did not ask the right questions before.

December 29, 2003, 11:39 PM
ok....i understand the long vs. short as in the stroke length....now tell me how the extra 400 fps is picked up from a smaller shell? different powder?


December 29, 2003, 11:40 PM
BTW im not trying to be a moron or a thorn in anybodies side here.....im just trying to broaden my horizon in modern rifles where it seems this short action stuff is relatively new or at least this past deer season is the first time ive really heard much talk about it.

December 29, 2003, 11:53 PM
Yes New propellent formulations are part of the answer, and the "improved "(the case has been blown out further and the shoulders are sharper) profile of the cartridges is the other part.
so a shorter length cartridge, can out perform a standard length round.
and they are a relatively new production item.

December 30, 2003, 12:36 AM
The new .270, 7mm and .300 WSM (Winchester Short Magnums) have very fat cartridges. So while the overall case length may be the same length as the short-action .308 cartridge, the powder capacity is much larger than a .308 Winchester cartridge. Also, a fatter case yeilds a more efficient powder burn, as the primer instantly ignites a greater surface area of powder, since the cartridge cross-section is larger in a WSM compared to a .308 cartridge.

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