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Joined: 09/23/2004
Posts: 137
best all around rifle -338 win mag

If you're looking to buy just one rifle and be done with it I say the 338 is the ticket. its accurate, its powerful, and its big enough for anything on the North american continet. I see or hear people always ask: is my 270 big enough, or is my 30 06 enough , or do you think I can kill a moose with my 243.

My answer is simple: If you're asking then you have doubts yourself and you've answered your own question. On the other hand I've never heard anyone say: is that enough gun? when refering to the 338. Now I'm sure that I'll get flamed that the 338 is too much for a whitetail or a mule deer etc. And I would agree to a certain extent. A 338 isn't my first choice for a whitetail gun, but it certainly will get the job done. And I'm certain someone will say its too much recoil. well yeah it kicks, but my 14 year old 115 pounder shoots mine just fine so he's either really tougher or we're whinners

Now, I want to close by saying that picking one gun is boring! Multiple calibers is the way to go. I like buying a new caliber just cause I don't have one. heck, I own reloading dies for calibers I don't even own....YET!

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Location: Southeast Washington State
Joined: 09/28/2004
Posts: 117
best all around rifle -338 win mag

Oh, I don't think the 338 is too much for whitetail or antelope. They make a 160 grain spitzer that you can load down enough that it is just fine for smaller big game. If you reload, as I do, then the 338 is just right for any big game ticket in North or South America.

It may be a bit much for varmints. Of course, you can always roll your own accelator loads, but like you said, owning firearms in more than one caliber is everyone's fantasy, ain't it?

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Location: williamstown vt
Joined: 08/30/2003
Posts: 293
best all around rifle -338 win mag

sure is!! Big smile

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Location: Ca
Joined: 05/08/2005
Posts: 23
Nay. Nay...

I own a cherry 338 WM in a customized Ruger #3-this round is pure P____Y, from military to big game hunting, but I must say the best all around calibre is the 30-06 Springfield, which can be loaded from 90 gr. to 250gr. (yes, I said 250), most available rounds/surplus etc., and can/have killed almost every game animal (including elephant) on the planet; a joy to reload, just the right amount of recoil for us manly men (heh heh )who like a little jolt in their cola.
Having said that, there could be no reason (for a gunner) to live without a really accurate, well fitted, balanced .22 rimfire. Cheapest ammo on the market, can carry a kazillion rounds, easily suppressed (so I'm told), if accurately placed, can/have killed almost every critter on the planet (yep, elephants too, however most of those fools who tried to kill elephants and Grizzlies with their .22s usually succumbed to being chased, caught, torn apart, eaten, remains picked at by vultures afterward, but that's besides the point....).
shoot straight zeN

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Location: Montana
Joined: 02/13/2005
Posts: 409
best all around rifle -338 win mag

I would say there is no need for somthing as extreme ass the 338 if your going to be hunting N.A.My 7Mag will kill any game animal in N.A. just as well as the 338 and I dont have to get punished everytime I want to go out and do some longrange vamit shooting.I love the idea of owning one rifle I can take on every hunt,and I do.

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Location: Ca
Joined: 05/08/2005
Posts: 23
"This is the story, 'bout a boy named Ted(dy Bear

I'll take a .338 WM over a 7mm anyday for hunting big bears Z Evil!

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Location: Missouri/Arkansas
Joined: 08/21/2003
Posts: 891
best all around rifle -338 win mag

The majority of us probably don't hunt the big bears. I hunt deer, so a 338 would not be a sensible choice. It's got more power and more penetration than I can take advantage of on such small game.

As for people asking themselves if they're sure about their 243, 270, 308, or 30-06, a lot of them may simply be responding to all the hype these days about velocity and energy. As far as penetration is concerned, a 180 grain bullet from a 308 or 30-06 has all that is necessary for all North American game. In the smaller high power class, there is of course the 257 Weatherby Magnum, which will launch a 120 grain bullet out at a starting speed of 3400 fps, plenty of knockdown power. The 270 Weatherby Magnum is even better, capable of driving a 150 grain Nosler at 3300 fps.

And of course, my favorite open-country round, the 7mm Remington Magnum, is capable of driving a 160 or 162 grain bullet at 3100 to 3200 fps, without much more recoil than a 30-06. One of the .30 caliber magnums, such as the the 300 Winchester Magnum can drive a 180 grain bullet as fast and flat as a 270 can launch a 130 grain bullet, and will deliver more than a ton of energy at 400 yards. The super- .30's will do even more both the 300 Weatherby and 300 RUM both hit 3250 to 3300 fps with 180's, and top 3000 with 200 grain bullets.

It might make more sense to consider one's shooting ability before determining the ability of their cartridge choice, as people who shoot poorly aren't going to shoot better when you replace their 270 with a 338. Most of the time, excess firepower is a handicap, most people simply cannot shoot their best when they're absorbing 35 ft-lbs of recoil each time they pull the trigger.

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Location: Montana
Joined: 02/13/2005
Posts: 409
best all around rifle -338 win mag

Well put Captian O,if you cant shoot well enough to kill any NA big game or "big bear" with a caliber in the 30-06 or 7 Mag class you probably have no buisness hunting anything.Shot placement is 90% of the kill no matter what you are shooting or what you are shooting it with.Just thinking about putting up with that 35lbs of recoil is enough to give me a flinch lol.

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Location: Missouri/Arkansas
Joined: 08/21/2003
Posts: 891
best all around rifle -338 win mag

Shot placement is most certainly 90 percent of the matter. In Africa, the 308 Winchester is even more popular than in this country. Most elk hunters would consider it marginal, and if they are talking about the round in like a Remington model Seven or one of the Ruger Mannlicher-style rifles, that's probably true, in the open country. Creek bottoms are another story. But in a rifle with a 22 to 24 inch barrel, it's an excellent choice.

There's a lot of talk about how the 270's, 7mm's, and 30's are not adequate for angled shots through elk. The way I see it, a marginal shot is a marginal shot, regardless of what cartridge your weapon is chambered for. Even when I am using a 7mag for deer hunting, I will not take shots that are risky. Chasing a wounded deer just isn't very appealing.

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Moderator
Location: Wa.
Joined: 03/31/2004
Posts: 1300
best all around rifle -338 win mag

I don't feel it's neccesary for any caliber larger than 30 for anything in the lower 48 and most of the critters north of us.
The 338wm would be a very good all around cartridge. I don't feel it would be to much gun for most. I personally would not use it but, it would work just fine.
Just about, any cartridge can be down loaded or set with a bullet for that particular need.
The 338wm would be a good choice for an all around cartridge.

Anonymous
best all around rifle -338 win mag

Ummmmmm OK! It seems as though we have a heck of a lot of elk hunters who just don't need or cotton to the .338 Winchester magnum, or maybe I am reading something in between these posts that isn't really there hey?

I'll just go on record as to say I am not a one gun man, nor have I ever really been so, not in the last 40 years least wise. I have hunted elk with a .270 cal., the 7mm mag, 300 mag and a couple of wildcats as well.

However, I truely do believe that the .338 is a much more effective caliber on bigger game like elk or bears. It kills with more authority and you will get a birds eye view of knowing you hit that elk, when the bullet connects, just ain't no guessing period.

I believe the 300 Winchester magnum is a better all around hunting caliber but now that the bullet manufacturer's have produce such great loads in lighter bullets, I don't see why the .338 mag won't work on game like whitetail without anybody screaming "OVERKILL". A 180 grain bullet from a .338 mag is not overkill when compared to a 180 grainer from a 300 mag or even a hot 30-06.

If one reloads your own, you can knock off near 15% of the recoil of a .338 magnum rifle, buy going to other powders that are available to hunters. It just takes a little experimenting is all or running through a PC program etc. So let's not be to harsh on those that want to use a .338 mag for their whitetail deer hunting. I once killed a Steinbuck with a .416 Remington magnum (350 grain bullet) as it was the only gun I had that day available to me.

I guess those folks in Africa think a little different about big bullets when hunting animals. Holy Cow! Nobody cared I was using a big bore caliber to hunt plains game, Not a peep was said about over kill! Sorry, there was one guy who was a small bore sort, who thought you could kill everything on the Dark Continent with a .270 caliber. Well this overweight bench shooter and some others found that not to be the case simply put.

Harvesting the Steinbuck trophy was the only concern of my PH and tracker, as he himself carried a .375H&H and shot several small deer size game, just to show me how it works. It would be a smaller world indeed, if everybody used a 7mm mag or or 30-06 to hunt every animal in the forests or plains. I thank GOD for variety in life......Amen!

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