48 replies [Last post]
Offline
Location: Deer Woods
Joined: 06/13/2005
Posts: 155
.338 Win Mag

Never hear alot about the .338wm on here. Does anyone hunt with it?. It doesnt seem like a whitetail cartridge, nor does it seem to popular. I think I've seen on the hunting channel a guy take a brown bear with a .338wm.is it for bear. please elaborate fellas.

Offline
Location: new brunswick
Joined: 12/07/2006
Posts: 429
.338 Win Mag

i'm pretty sure the 338 winchester magnum is the most popular caliber in alaska(thats what they claim anyways) the new 325 wsm is right up there beside the 338 but i'm not sure if people would swing over to the 325 because its just as good but no better. wouldnt make sense to switch cals because you wouldnt be gaining anything i dont think. personally i use the 300 wsm and absolutly love the caliber...hope this helps Thumbs up

Don Fischer's picture
Offline
Moderator
Location: Antelope, Ore
Joined: 03/24/2005
Posts: 3187
.338 Win Mag

I've had two of them and they are awsomely powerful. I think wonsky is right about the 338 in Alaska, at least from what I aslo hear. You load the thing up with 250 gr bullet's and it is an absolute brute. I think that if I was still shooting magnums and could have only one rifle for all of North America, that might well be it. One drawback, it kills on both ends, at least mine did.

Offline
Location: pennsylvania
Joined: 01/27/2007
Posts: 131
.338 Win Mag

I have one but shelved it for the 338-378 weatherby mag. as far as the winchester goes its a great all around cartridge if you could only own one gun. it really does dominate ALASKA with the 250gr bullets and yes it is a brute on both ends. Thumbs up

Offline
Location: Southern NH
Joined: 09/13/2006
Posts: 380
.338 Win Mag

I have one in a Winchester Model 70 Stainless Classic. I use it for elk every year. I'ts a great caliber. About the same ballistics with a 250 g bullet as a 30-06 or a .280 Rem with a 160-165 grain. My other gun is a .280 and I sight them in for the same point of impact, 2" high at 100 yds. It really packs a punch. It does kick and the gun is a little heavier than my 280. You can find ammo for it a lot of places, it just might not be the bullet or brand you're looking for. All in all, it's a great round. The reason you don't hear a lot of people crowing about it is it is on the big end of the scale for animals in the lower 48 and the short magnums are all the rage right now. Can't wait to try it on a moose.

Offline
Location: Upper Peninsula of Michigan
Joined: 01/13/2007
Posts: 368
.338 Win Mag

I used to hunt with the .338. before I injured my shoulder and thought it was a great all around rifle, IF you reload. My deer load was a 200 gr bullet at the velocity of the old .348 Winchester. Terrific deer load!

Offline
Location: Wyoming
Joined: 08/04/2006
Posts: 38
.338 Win Mag

Actually, I saw more .300 WMs in Alaska than I did .338s. Though relatively plentiful, it seemed there were almost as many .375 H&Hs in the field, too.

Of course, not to detract from the .338, which is a fine cartridge, from everything I've heard.

However, I'd consider it unecessarily powerful for deer. So, to answer your question, I'd classify it as a brown/grizzly, moose, and elk caliber. And kick it DOES. Seems most .338s I've fired have been built on relatively "light" platforms, unlike my .375 and others I've fired. That combination of heavy bullet, lots of powder, and a light rifle left me flinching pretty bad after the first couple of shots with a .338. They ARE painful!

Offline
Location: Western ans Northern Canada
Joined: 06/26/2007
Posts: 80
.338 Win Mag

I think the .338 is an excellent rifle for what it was designed for.I owned one in a Model 70 Winchester for many years.It is designed for the larger heavier North American species.It down range ballistics and hitting power are very surprising when compared to larger calibres. It will load anything from a 200 to a 300 grain bullet,but really shines with a 250 grain,muzzly energy is almost 4000 ft. lbs.,compared to about 2700 of a 30.06.
It is really too big for deer,a badly placed shot can "blow a deer to bits",I have witnessed the ghastly results..
They are a punishing brute to shoot though,and from experience I would reccommend that if you plan to mount a scope to one,shop wisely and find a scope with good "eye relief" (the distance from your eye to the scope when viewing through it) or the gun can punch a deep gash in your forehead when the gun kicks back hard.Many people bear the "scope-eye" scar from this mistake,as do I!! lol

Don Fischer's picture
Offline
Moderator
Location: Antelope, Ore
Joined: 03/24/2005
Posts: 3187
.338 Win Mag

Welcome to the site trapper mike. I too have seen what a 338 will do to a deer, it can be gastly. Other than gophers in Montana that one deer was all I ever shot with either of mine. I couldn't imagine shooting one in a 6 1/ or 7 pound rifle, it might tear your head off.

Good point about the scope too. My first had a 2 3/4x Redfield and the second a 2-7 Luepold. I greatly prefered to 2 3/4x. Better eye relief, sat closer to the gun, gathered light better and better field of view. Then even tho I have a few high power scope's, my serious hunting rifles have a 2 3/4x on one and a 1-4x on the other.

Offline
Location: Western ans Northern Canada
Joined: 06/26/2007
Posts: 80
.338 Win Mag

Thanks for the welcome!
I found a good set of scope mounts were nessecary too,the recoil would actually move the scope in the mounts if not secured well.
My gun used to flatten to nice pointed tips of my bullets in the magazine too,when fired.
I used a 3x9 wide angle,but I know now that the Luepold has very good eye relief.
Unfortunately one lightly built fellow who claimed to be an experienced shooter tried my gun..Knocked him flat on his back,out cold.He had a huge deep gash right to the skull and had to be taken to the hospital.

Don Fischer's picture
Offline
Moderator
Location: Antelope, Ore
Joined: 03/24/2005
Posts: 3187
.338 Win Mag

Ya really gotta love those experienced shooter's that can handle anything! Laugh