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Savage .338 Win Mag

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by kframe357, Mar 5, 2006.

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  1. kframe357

    kframe357 Member

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    Just picked one up as my new hunting rifle. Any ideas to how far I can effectivly shoot a deer with? Any good hunting rounds available?
     
  2. dakotasin

    dakotasin Member

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    1- as far as you want.
    2- i have yet to see any ammo available for a 338 win mag that isn't a hunting round.

    338 win mag is a great cartridge - i enjoy mine immensely.
     
  3. Schleprok62

    Schleprok62 Member

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    +1 what dakotasin said...


    Recoil is somewhat BRUTAL though... :D
     
  4. BruceB

    BruceB Member

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    I bought a VERY slightly-used Savage M116 in .338 last summer, this being the stainless-mit-synthetic version, and with a muzzle brake. It had fired exactly six rounds before it came to me.

    Getting ready for an elk/whitetail hunt, I tried out the Barnes (handloaded) 225 TSX bullets for the first time, and found that this unmodified factory rifle will RELIABLY place three 225 TSX bullets in a group of less than 1/2" from 100 yards. It has a 3-9x Leupold scope mounted.

    I killed a nice Alberta whitetail in fading light from 295 laser-ranged yards....one round, bang-flop.

    I believe Savage rifles to be one of the great bargains of our day. They aren't fancy, but they DO SHOOT WELL. This is quite a concession, from one who greatly prefers blue steel and walnut. You have a very fine hunting rifle. The effective range is really determined by your own abilities, but for deer a bullet from the lighter end of the load selection probably should be used. There's also nothing wrong in picking a medium-weight bullet, like my 225s, and using it for everything you may hunt in North America.
     
  5. CB900F

    CB900F Member

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    Kframe;

    The .338 will reliably kill out to extremely long ranges. Get a book of ballistic tables, such as in Hornady 6th edition, & prepare to getcher jaw dropped.

    If you use 1000 ft lbs of delivered energy as max range, the .338 with a muzzle velocity of 2900 fps using the Hornady 225 gr spire point bullet, retains 1700 ft lbs at 500 yards.

    However, it takes much practice to be able to make shots at 500 yards & beyond. The gun alone won't do it for you.

    900F
     
  6. mordechaianiliewicz

    mordechaianiliewicz Member

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    Holy shiite batman!

    Such a gun can reliably kill a whitetail at 1000 yards. Granted you have to have a match quality round and high skill level to manage that. Stick within 500 yards, and you have a thunderbolt of a gun.
     
  7. SwampWolf

    SwampWolf Member

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    I've had a Savage 116SE Safari Express (with S/S action/barrel, a nicely figured/checkered walnut stock and "express" style sights) for a few years that I can count on for 1 1/2" three shot groups at 100 yards with factory ammunition all day long. For deer, I would use nothing heavier than 200 gr. bullets. I don't use the .338 for deer but, if I did, I would consider using Federal's 180 gr. Nosler Ballistic Tips.

    I don't find my Savage especially punishing in terms of recoil but I do use the unique on/off brake in the "on" position when shooting from the bench (with muffs and plugs to protect from muzzle blast) and in the "off" position in the field (to avoid the brake-induced muzzle blast on unprotected ears).

    As much as I like this rifle, I sure wish it was equipped with the new Savage adjustable trigger. The stock one leaves something to be desired.
     
  8. Vern Humphrey

    Vern Humphrey Member

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    Go out to your local range and set up targets at various ranges. Shoot at them from the standing unsupported (off-hand) position, the sitting position and the improvised rest (say a pack across a bench.) If you can keep three shots in succession inside 12 inches at a given range, you can kill a deer from that position at that range.

    Finn Aagar used to say he could keep three shots inside 12 inches at 100 yards shooting off-hand and considered that his maximum range for that position. From other positions, he could, of course shoot better and had a longer range.

    All .338 factory loads, to my knowledge are designed for hunting -- it is not considered a target rifle. You should, however, match your loads to your game. If you're shooting white tail deer a light, ordinary cup-and-core bullet is more than enough. For moose, elk or grizzleys, a heavier, premium bullet is better.
     
  9. kframe357

    kframe357 Member

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    Thanks for the replies and advice. As for shooting, I am a prior active service Marine. I was a 4th award Expert. We trained out 500 yds using the open iron sights.
    My Savage came scoped with a 3-9x Simmons on it. I may upgrade scope later. If I fill my tag this year I will post pics and credit this post for the ammo advice.
    Randy
     
  10. one-shot-one

    one-shot-one Member

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    PERSONELLY

    i would never intentionally take a shot at a game animal at more than 400 yrds. but the .338 round is capable of putting them down at double that distance if the rifleman can do his part.
     
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