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300 Win Mag vs. .30-06...Which would you choose?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by chopper180, Mar 11, 2010.

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  1. chopper180

    chopper180 Member

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    OK here's the deal: I'm looking at getting either a 300 win mag or a 30-06 and not sure which would be better.

    For my 40th, my wife is sending me on a hunting trip. I don't turn 40 till 2011 but would like to plan ahead. Here's the problem: the only rifle I have at the moment is a Marlin 336 in .35 Remington. A fine rifle for sure, but I'm planning on doing some big game hunting that may involve 200+ yard shots. Just don't think the .35 is going to cover it, so looking into something with more "oomph" to it.

    Any advice you could give would be appreciated.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Emeritus

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    The .30-06 is sufficient for N.A. game.
     
  3. chopper180

    chopper180 Member

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    So is the 300 win mag overkill? Is there any distance advantage to be gained or is it negligible?
     
  4. Omaha-BeenGlockin

    Omaha-BeenGlockin Member

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    .30-06

    The .300 kicks like mule---ammo is less available out in the sticks---more expensive---any power gain is negligable(sp?)-----better off with a .338 if you're wanting more power than an ought 6.
     
  5. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Emeritus

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    If you use a zero to give you a maximum point-blank range, the 300WM will only give a marginal (like less than 50-yard) increase in point-blank range. See this post for an explanation
    http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost.php?p=6283716&postcount=33

    If you need to shoot beyond about 300 yards, you should dial your scope (or use reticle marks) anyway, and then it doesn't matter if you're holding 5 MOA or 3.5 MOA.

    The .30-06 will be more "shootable" because of less recoil. However, if you build a rifle with this in mind, don't let me talk you out of 300WM. A rifle and scope put together for long-range shooting in .300WM is devastating on game at 500+ yards. On the other hand, a student of mine made first-round antelope kills with a .308 at around 500 yards.

    At 300 yards or less, the .30-06 will work as well as the 300

    -z
     
  6. Uncle Mike

    Uncle Mike Member

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    Well the 30-06 will fit the bill at 200y and well beyond, you don't mention the game just that it is big, how big, moose big or whitetail big?

    The 30-06 is certainly more versatile, and I bet you would use it more than the 300, but since you have a 35, why not get the 300, you certainly will have all the bases covered with the it.

    The 300 offers a bit flatter trajectory than the 30-06 with about 200y more useful range on average, and will drive heavier (200gr.) bullets somewhat better than the 30-06 will.

    If your not after elk at 400y or moose at 100y, I might get the 30-06 though.
     
  7. chopper180

    chopper180 Member

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    Most likely moose or elk since I've never hunted either, plus neither of them are in my area.

    From what you guys are telling me it sounds like the 30-06 may be the way to go. My concern is that I get something that is too expensive to shoot and only sees very limited use.

    In my neck of the woods, you're just not going to get a 3-400 yard shot, plus if you do; it ain't gonna be at an elk/moose.

    Unfortunately I don't have the budget right now to have a different weapon for each scenario, so I have to have one that will do it all.
     
  8. Uncle Mike

    Uncle Mike Member

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    It's not all that bad of a price difference, if you need a 300, then the price you can live with.

    If you plan on using this new rifle for your deer rifle back home, then the 30-06 would be my choice!

    You can also elect to use Hornady Superformance ammo in that 30-06, it'll give you another 200fps over your standard stuff...shave about 1" off of the drop at 200y and offer quite a bit more energy also.
     
  9. Big Bill

    Big Bill Member

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    If you hunt out west, it's not uncommon to take longer shots 400+ yards. I'd buy the 300 WM for sure. I had a 30-06 and sold it and bought a 300 WSM. I couldn't be happier. You'll push a heavier bullet faster with more energy than a 30-06 for a faster kill.
     
  10. saturno_v

    saturno_v Member

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    Chopper180


    Congratulation on your 40th!!

    I crossed that mark exactly last year and my wife bought me a Weatherby Vanguard in 338 Win Mag (I own three 30-06 as well..a bolt a pump and a semiauto)

    I have to agree with the other posters...there is not much difference between the two rounds, especially if you buy a run of the mill commercial rifle with a regular 24" pipe

    As Zak said already, you gain ony few more yards of MPBR (Maximum Point Blank Range)

    Ammo availability is usually better for the 30-06 and less expensive...before the "ammo crisis" I could easily buy a box of regular 150 or 180 gr. soft point 30-06 ammo at Wal Mart for $11-12 a box where the 300 Win Mag was running already over $30...nowdays differences may be less extreme but they are still there...

    The Hornady Superformance 30-06 ammo comes at spitting distance, performance wise, with a 300 Win Mag.

    A custom rifle with a long match grade barrel could magnify the 300 WM slight advantage over the 30-06 but I don't know what is your budget...and if you take the custom route you may as well get a more "energic" cartridge like a 300 Weatherby Magnum or a 300 RUM.

    The 300 WM may give you better wind deflection abilities at extreme ranges (well over 500 yards) and you will have more scope dialing range at even further distances (with the 30-06 eventually you run out of adjustment before the 300 WM) but this is well beyond the regular hunting shooting distances, even what is usually considered long range hunting.

    I had a similar "dilemma"...I wanted a new rifle to "diversify" my collection and owning already a couple of 30-06 at that time, I was torn between the 300 Win Mag, the 300 Weatherby Magnum or the 338 Win Mag in a Weatherby Vanguard platform.

    Eventually I decided on the 338 with carries significant more punch at long range spitting bigger pills (you can use bullet weight up to 300 gr.)..with the 338 I did jump class compared to an '06

    The basic synthetic Vanguard can be bought for $399 regardless of the cartridge (up to 338 Win Mag and including the 300 Weatherby Magnum), IMHO at the moment is the best rifle for the money.... accuracy guaranteed from the box, with each individual rifle tested.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2010
  11. NWCP

    NWCP Member

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    I'd go with either a 30-06, or a .308. The 300 Win Mag is a bit much for the lower 48. JMHO
     
  12. saturno_v

    saturno_v Member

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    This is the ballistic data for two big game 30-06 loadings from Double Tap out of a 22" barrel rifle (a Remington 700)

    180 gr. Nosler Accubond

    Muzzle: 2800fps - 3135 ft./lbs

    100yds - 1.7" high 2651fps / 2808ft/lbs
    200yds - zeroed 2506fps / 2511ft/lbs
    300yds - 7.3" low 2367fps / 2240ft/lbs
    400yds - 20.7" low 2233fps / 1993ft/lbs
    500yds - 41.2" low 2103fps / 1768ft/lbs

    200 gr. Nosler Accubond

    Muzzle: 2650fps - 3120 ft./lbs

    100yds - 1.5" high 2525fps / 2831ft/lbs
    200yds - zeroed 2403fps / 2565ft/lbs
    300yds - 8.0" low 2285fps / 2320ft/lbs
    400yds - 22.7" low 2171fps / 2094ft/lbs
    500yds - 44.2" low 2060fps / 1884ft/lbs

    At 500 yards you have almost the same energy of your 35 Rem at the muzzle...you can kill anything in Northamerica with these loads within the published distances...
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2010
  13. bpl

    bpl Member

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    I would choose the 30-06.
     
  14. 4288

    4288 Member

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    Yes, there is a distance advantage to the 300 win mag. The added velocity means flatter trajectory, which is more forgiving of small ranging errors. It also means the bullet is less effected by the wind. But these accuracy advantages really only come in to play at LONG distances, way way further out than 200 yards. As far advantages in terminal performance at ultra long range, I haven't studied this as much so no comment. Happy hunting!
     
  15. TehK1w1

    TehK1w1 Member

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    IMHO you can't go wrong with either one. The 300 has a velocity and trajectory advantage, but it's not real significant until 300+ yds. It has significantly more recoil (all other factors held constant) and the ammo costs more.

    And I know you didn't ask, but the savage 110 series and the Weatherby vanguard are both excellent, accurate, inexpensive rifles. For more $$, a new Winchester M70 or Ruger M77 Mk2 would both be great.
     
  16. Birddog1911

    Birddog1911 Member

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    I have to give another vote for 30-06. The cartridge is just so versital(sp?).
     
  17. ms6852

    ms6852 Member

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    Go with the 30-06. This caliber has the variety that will lend itself to coyote or varmint hunting using a 110gr or 125gr, without breaking the bank. You can use 150 or 165gr for deer and will also be good with elk using a 165gr or 180 gr. bullet. For black bear you can use your 35 remington or your 30-06 using 180 gr or 220 bullets. It seems to me that you really do not hunt alot and the 30-06 would be more practical because you can at least shoot targets for fun at a much more economical price that a 300 mag will. By the way it will not rattle your teeth like the 300 mag. does, it kicks like a mule at 2 or 3 times the price of regular 30-06 ammo.
     
  18. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Member

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    cartridge 1 represents Winchesters 180grn 30-06 load

    cartridge 2 is the same bullet in the 300win mag

    both these represent a 200yd zero

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

  19. 4288

    4288 Member

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    Great graphic Krochus!!! Illustrates how close the two are ballistically (athough it's all subjective - I guess some might say how far apart they are :)), and illustrates the principle of flatter trajectories being more forgiving if range estimation is off. Informative addition!
     
  20. Abel

    Abel Member

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    30-06
     
  21. pwillie

    pwillie Member

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    30-300yds,confidence is the master! I like the fact of hunting with the 300,it will take game animals up to 600 yds. I also use 150 gr Nosler BST.Flat and then flat!
     
  22. natman

    natman Member

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    Unless you have a specific reason for requiring the extra range of the 300, I would definitely go with the 30-06. Recoil from a 300 is very unpleasant, like getting punched in the face for every shot.
     
  23. Sav .250

    Sav .250 Member

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    You didn`t state what the "big game" was so I`d go with the 300 Win Mag.
     
  24. Murphys Law

    Murphys Law Member

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    Another vote for 30-06. Todays modern premium bullets have made it even more deadly than it was the past and even loaded with conventional (old tech) bullets its taken everything on this continent.
     
  25. Arkansas Paul

    Arkansas Paul Member

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    "In my neck of the woods, you're just not going to get a 3-400 yard shot, plus if you do; it ain't gonna be at an elk/moose."

    That being the case, I'd go with the '06, but you do what you want.
     
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