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Short action calibers .30 and up

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by SigluvrMT, Dec 6, 2008.

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  1. SigluvrMT

    SigluvrMT Member

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    This is my first post here on THR. I have been reading information posted here for a long time though. Anyway I wanted to ask members opinions and thoughts on short action cartridges sized 308 and larger. I want to buy a nice handy short action rifle for hunting in the timber for deer and elk, possibly black bear too. I have been hunting almost all my life with 270 win and 30-06' and 7mm-08. I have always like the 7mm-08 for its short cycle action and low recoil, but never wanted to use it as first choice for Elk. Since our deer and elk seasons overlap I often carry the 06'. Thanks in advance-Glad to be here.:) Greg in MT
     
  2. Brian Williams

    Brian Williams Moderator Emeritus

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    look at the 338 federal and the 358 win.
     
  3. gvnwst

    gvnwst Member

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    I personally like the .338 fed, as the .338" bullets have better BC than the 358. And the lower recoil is nice.
     
  4. SigluvrMT

    SigluvrMT Member

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    I will have to check out .338 federal. 338 federal has appeal for sure being able to find brass cheap and lots of bullet choices. I wonder what kind of velocity guys are getting on reloads w/given barrel lengths? Greg
     
  5. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Member

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    The 358 Win. would be perfect...if only it were chambered in more rifles.

    It is just as powerful as the 35 Whelen, yet its short and handy.

    I'm sure the 338 Federal is great...but if you reload you wont be able match factory specs with powders that we have available at this time...unless something has came out recently (Reloder 17 and Hybrid 100 are the only new ones I'm aware of...they may or may not work for the 338 Federal)...just something to think about.
     
  6. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

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    "I have always like the 7mm-08 for its short cycle action and low recoil, but never wanted to use it as first choice for Elk."

    :what::confused:


    Why not ????? The 7mm/08 is a superb elk cartridge.

    :confused::confused::confused:

    :cool:
     
  7. SigluvrMT

    SigluvrMT Member

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    It is not my intention to debate the 7mm-08's effectiveness on elk but rather to get opinions on 308 caliber and larger short action cartridges. If you like the 7mm-08 for Elk hunting I am happy that your satisfied. Is that your primary elk hunting choice Shawnee? Greg
     
  8. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Member

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    If you're going to be hunting in the timber...why not just get a 308???

    Many elk have fallen to the 308.


    About the 7mm-08...its ballistics are nearly identical to the 270 Win...which is a fine elk caliber.
     
  9. SigluvrMT

    SigluvrMT Member

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    I know lots of elk have fallen to various calibers. I thought I could solicit some opinions and experiences on some of the larger short actions available like the 358 win and others. You know starting with the 308 win and moving up in caliber?
    I did not expect to get involved in a debate based on my statement "I have always like the 7mm-08 for its short cycle action and low recoil, but never wanted to use it as first choice for Elk."
    Thanks for making this so easy LOL:banghead: I do appreciate everyones opinion no matter how wrong they may be! LOL Greg
     
  10. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

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    Well Greg.... you seem to take inordinate offense at a reasonable question.
    That doesn't speak so well of you.

    "Anyway I wanted to ask members opinions and thoughts on short action cartridges sized 308 and larger."

    My "opinion and thoughts on short action cartridges sized .308 and larger" are, in summary... they are not a particularly good match for the lightweight, short-barrelled rifles that are so great to carry in rugged country.
    In such rifles they have unsettling recoil and muzzle blast and lose sufficient velocity that they provide no valuable advantage over cartridges like the 7mm/08. That opinion is based on the use of carbines in 7mm/08, .308 and .350 Rem. Mag.

    Local opinion may vary.

    ;)
     
  11. SigluvrMT

    SigluvrMT Member

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    Shawnee-
    I did not intend to show excessive offense at your post which indeed was a simple question. My apologies. I wanted to avoid the discussion of calibers which I excluded in my original post.
    I simply think that larger heavier bullets are more effective on large animals like Elk. They deliver better penetration in my experience. I do not know much about short action calibers larger than the 308 win. but I would like to. Thanks:)-Greg
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2008
  12. woof

    woof Member

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    Actually, I think the .338 fed and .358 are the only short action alternatives and it seems the .338 fed has supplanted the .358 so there you go.
     
  13. tapout08

    tapout08 Member

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    what about a 325 wsm?
     
  14. gvnwst

    gvnwst Member

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    Well, less loads avalible, more recoil, muzzle blast and weight.
     
  15. Coltdriver

    Coltdriver Member

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    How about the 300 WSM? Its a short action round that will get you 30 06 performance and up depending on how you want to load it. You can load it up to just under 300 Win Mag performance.
     
  16. gvnwst

    gvnwst Member

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    Same as above, but the OP didn't say if he wanted a mag.

    Um, the WSM has >.300 win mag performance, IIRC.

    @SigluvrMT
    Are you willing to go with a magnum?
     
  17. moosehunt

    moosehunt Member

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    A short action cartridge for elk--one will be hard pressed to do better than the .325 WSM. "Magnum" is just a word tossed about that supposedly sells guns to some. It actually signifies nothing. Even the belt on belted cartridges doesn't define "magnum", i.e. the original belted cartridge was the .375 H&H--never was referred to as "magnum", isn't today. The .330 Dakota is quite a bit more "potent" than the .338 Win Mag, yet the .330 isn't labeled "magnum". The .240 Weatherby "Magnum"? Hello? It is a non-significant meaningless word when used in conjunction with various cartridge names.

    Anyway, SiglovrMT, give the .325 WSM some thought.
     
  18. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

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    325wsm/195gr/9lb rifle = 23.5 ft/lbs recoil

    325 wsm - can be found in some good rifles but no great variety of choice of either rifle models or action type, and relatively little opportunity to purchase "used". Ammo availability is dicey.

    :cool:
     
  19. woof

    woof Member

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    Just this am I noticed a like new Savage Scout .308, 20 in bbl on gunbroker for 450. Since the OP said dense timber I assume shots will be relatively short range. This rifle sounds perfect to me. wsm = wastefully spent money

    Another thought: a used Remington 600 in .308, but it will cost more
     
  20. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

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    Well, it ain't new and sexy, and you'll have to accept a range limitation of about 200-250yds, and you may get scoffed at by the .359 Stumpblower crowd....

    .... but the humble .35 Remington has been doing just fine at what you describe for several decades now, and it's shorter than a .308.
    ;)

    :cool:
     
  21. bpl

    bpl Member

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    SigluvrMT,

    Where do you live in MT? My grandparents were originally from Missoula and my Dad grew up in Billings. I used to make it up to MT a couple times a year for trout fishing and/or skiing. What a beautiful place!!

    Anyway, I have no personal experience hunting Elk, but I think if I were looking for a gun for the purposes you described, I'd skip the fad calibers and get a 20 or 22" barreled .308 like a Model 7 or something. Then, if you reload, you can share bullets with the 30-06 and you have a short, moderately recoiling, quick handling timber rifle which is perfectly adequate for Elk.

    FWIW, my GF's uncle is an elk guide in CO (he uses a 30-06). He told me the 7mm-08 works great on elk. Those 7mm bullets penetrate very well due to high BC and sectional density.

    BPL
     
  22. Ol` Joe

    Ol` Joe Member

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    A Marlin lever in 444 or 45-70 are about as handy and deadly a woods rifle as one could want.

    The 7-08 308 class cartridge will work just as well as your 06 at close range with heavier bullet wgts IMO. Lots of elk and bear dropped with the same bullets at velocities within a 100 fps of them every year by hunters that don`t believe they are capable...
     
  23. Ratshooter

    Ratshooter Member

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    Ruger has their compact magnums in 30 and 338 calibers. These are Rugers own rounds and may be hard to find.

    They also have the Frontier rifles in 338 Federal and 358 winchester.
     
  24. whiskey

    whiskey Member

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    I like the .308

    Nothing wrong with the .338 except that I don't like the recoil in a smaller gun.

    I carry a Remington 700 SPS Youth and it is a small, light accurate rifle. I have short arms and when all wrapped up in coats and coveralls the youth stock fits me perfect.
     
  25. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Member

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    Just my opinion...

    Forget all about the 325 WSM...simply because there are not many bullets to choose from.
     
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