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Thread: .308 as my primary rifle

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    Member bigdog's Avatar
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    Default .308 as my primary rifle

    I want to know if this is crazy thinking or not... I am tired of lugging my .338 win mag to Alaska to hunt, it is heavy and I am getting tired of the recoil, so I had my buddy build me a custom .308 and it shoots like a dream. I have no desire to chase Brown Bears, so is there anyone out there using the .308 for the bulk of their hunting... not to include the big bears... I am shooting 165 grain Nosler Partions out of it now and last week had great performance on a 300 lbs black bear which I shot at close range. I have alwasy been a hardcore bowhunter, so always thought shot placement is big concern not size of the caliber... Just want to hear from guys or gals who are using this at the present on animals up to moose... Thanks

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    I used a .308Win for a lot of years as my sole hunting rifle. Nothing wrong with it at all if you can put 'em where they count.

    In fact- as ammunition gets better in all respects and the newer, lighter rifles come on market- I may end up full circle with a .308Win...
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    In case you are interested, Phil Shoemaker, one of the top Alaska brown bear guides, says that the 308 win with Nosler partitions, Barnes triple shocks, or similar bullet should be fine for hunting big browns. Several other guides agree. It's all about shot placement and bulletselection . Caliber is rated third in importance. Not the gun I would chose you understand, but it will work fine of you do your part.

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    Member marshall's Avatar
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    For whatever it's worth, a .308Win loaded hot with one of the new wonder powders and a quality 150-168gr hunting bullet is darn close to a conventional 30-06 load with the same bullet. There is plenty of evidence about the 30-06 out preforming the 308 with heavier bullets. If you choose a quality bullet with high weight retention you will have good penetration on game with the 308. I like the A-Frame and the TSX for weight retention. I think the 308 has plenty of killing power.

    The 308 recoil will be less than a 30-06 with the same bullet because the powder charge is about 14gr less. The powder charge is used in the recoil calculation, less charge moving down the barrel with the bullet means less recoil.

    They are inherently accurate and easy to shoot well.

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    Member 1Cor15:19's Avatar
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    There is nothing that I'd not hunt in AK with a .308 Winchester. Bring it, shoot straight and you'll do as well as anyone else.....
    Foolishness is a moral category, not an intellectual one.

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    I have a great friend that has used this caliber for ages. It is, for the most, the only caliber he uses for all animals in Alaska. He says it's all about what you're comfortable with. He once told me that he used the 308 to take down a charging wounded grizzly(he was not the one that wounded it I may add). He said that he took a spine shot at the bear as it charged and hit it just behind the skull and dropped it in its tracks. The other guy he was with was shooting a 300wm and wounded the bear when it initially charged them while moose hunting. If you're more comfortablewith the 308 then go with it. It will do the job just fine.


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    Sponsor ADfields's Avatar
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    Nutin wrong with 308, like Marshall says it will run so close to 30-06 with 180g and under that ya need a chronograph to tell any difference. I took a lot of mule dear and one big elk ages ago in Arizona with 308. I considered it a long range cannon back then because I grew killing with a 30-30, your 308 will be just fine. Now if I was going to build a one gun fits most on a short action Id have gone 358 Winchester myself. But hey 308, 7mm08, 303, 7.62x54R, 7x57, 8x57, and many MANY other non-magnums may not sound as cool but they will sure make critters just as dead.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ADfields View Post
    But hey 308, 7mm08, 303, 7.62x54R, 7x57, 8x57, and many MANY other non-magnums may not sound as cool but they will sure make critters just as dead.
    I agree. A long dead and much mourned friend started his career up here in the 1920's and did it all, over and over again. Killed more game of all species than even he could remember. Owned one rifle and did it all with that until he died in his 80's. It was a 30-40 Krag, which he had "sporterized" and clipped the barrel to 22" sometime in the early 50's. Never reloaded his own and there was no such thing as premiums. But man, could he ever shoot. The 308 is a ballistic boomer by comparison, and the bullets today are marvels. The only thing left to do is shoot it well, and that's on the shooter and not the gun.

  9. #9

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    Nothing n Alaska I would not hunt with the .308's baby sister the wonderful .243 Winchester. So I consider the .308 way more than enough cartridge.

  10. #10

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    My son moved to the Northwest several months back and space in his living quarters was going to be limited so he asked me to set him up with one gun for everything. I sent him on his way with a Remington Light Tactical in 308 with a good supply of ammo loaded with Hornady 165 grain Interbonds.

    AD's advise concerning the 358 Winchester coulda been plucked outta my head. I love the 358 but I have grown very fond of the 7mm-08 and will use it on the little stuff!

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Good round for sure.I've seen it take tiggers,water buffalo and rock apes plus the normal stuff
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    .270 and 30.06 guy here (yeah, I love the .303 too), but I am loving shooting the .308, though I haven't hunted with it yet.
    I made the move because my boys carry ARs with .308 uppers (we can share ammo now) and I've heard so many good reports about the carrtige from hunters across the spectrum. I've carried the 30.06 as primary hunting rifle for most of my adulthood (which is substancial). But I'm finding the .308 easy to reload for and easy to shoot. My .270 may be spending more time at home...

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ADfields View Post
    Nutin wrong with 308....But hey 308, 7mm08, 303, 7.62x54R, 7x57, 8x57, and many MANY other non-magnums may not sound as cool but they will sure make critters just as dead.
    Amen. The 6.5x55 has probably killed more moose than any other cartridge on the planet. There's a lot more goes into determining ballistics and terminal performance than a flashy name.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Ah, the Swede. My youngest with his carbine.Attachment 64475

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    I hate the picture uploader on this site.

  16. #16
    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    I was looking forward to that pic too! Are you using the "insert image" uploader, or the "attachements" uploader? The latter always works better for me.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
    I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. ~Gerry Spence
    The last thing Alaska needs is another bigot. ~member Catch It
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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Attachment 64478Try again

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    Good round for sure.I've seen it take tiggers,water buffalo and rock apes plus the normal stuff
    So youare the one that shot Tigger! Man, Whiiny the Poo hasn't been the same since, let allow Christopher Robins.

    As everyone has said, the .308 in fine. Mine seems to be best with 165 grain bullets.

  19. #19
    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sayak View Post
    Worth the effort. A fine looking gentleman, with a timeless rifle.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
    I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. ~Gerry Spence
    The last thing Alaska needs is another bigot. ~member Catch It
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  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    Amen. The 6.5x55 has probably killed more moose than any other cartridge on the planet. There's a lot more goes into determining ballistics and terminal performance than a flashy name.
    Terminal balistics are all that matter! I've never owned a 6.5x55...I let to many modern cartridges get in the way. If they would have never developed another cartridge after the roaring 20s we would all be fine. Probably would be better hunters, we would all be better advised on the iconic old rounds like the 6.5x55 and there would be a whole lot less confusion in the shooting world. Instead of my 358 Winchester and 7mm-08 I could be killing stuff just as dead with an 8x57 and 7x57 or the 6.5x55. The marketing world and gun rags sure did complicate things and cause us to get perplexed and for what? So that we could miss out on the good stuff.

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