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Thread: .340 Weatherby Magnum

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    Default .340 Weatherby Magnum

    I've been doing some research and comparison of various calibers. Wondering what you all think about the .340 Wby Mag as a hunting caliber; both good and bad. It would be used for caribou, elk, deer, moose, and possibly bear. Especially interested in any first hand knowledge and stories you might share. The research indicates the speed and energy might make it one of the best big game cartridges around. I know it would be an expensive rifle and cartridge, but just wondering about experience anyone could share.

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    All calibers have their subjective good and bad.

    I know plenty that have been scope bit with lesser weatherby calibers .. so my primary concern would be the accompanying recoil. Next set of concerns would be bullet selection as it influences the amount of bloodshot meat.

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    The speed & energy of the 340 Wby come at an expense of RECOIL. Expect considerably more recoil than you'd get from a 338 WM in the same weight rifle. I guess if you're going to use a muzzle brake, the recoil would become a nonissue, but I think too much of my hearing (what's left) and anyone else's that might be with me to use a muzzle brake on anything. All the animals mentioned have been consistantly taken with lesser rifles.

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    It is a great round and will do the job well for the animals you mention. It is hard to imagine a more competent round for Alaska. It can reach out a long way with large projectiles with flat trajectory and really packs a wallop.
    My only problem with it was my own inability to shoot it well so I got rid of mine. I just didn't like the recoil- plain and simple. I know quite a few members shoot the 340 and have no problems with the recoil so it may just be me being a wuss!
    BEE

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    Member 10PTBUCK's Avatar
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    I have been using a 340 for many years. I have used it in alaska for 2 brown bear, 1 black bear, 1 dall sheep, 1 moose & a mountain goat shooting 225 grain ttx barnes. Yes the recoil is stiff ,but If you shoot alot it is managable, I just have always loved the feel of a weatherby rifle.

    Todd
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10PTBUCK View Post
    I have been using a 340 for many years. I have used it in alaska for 2 brown bear, 1 black bear, 1 dall sheep, 1 moose & a mountain goat shooting 225 grain ttx barnes. Yes the recoil is stiff ,but If you shoot alot it is managable, I just have always loved the feel of a weatherby rifle.
    Todd
    Which scope do you use? ~ I'm just curious

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    I own plenty of rifles and my 340 is by far my favorite. I had it magna ported and the recoil is fine. I shoot 210 grain and it shoots very flat. Only downside to me is the weight.

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    I d0nt have a 340 but I have its bookends....300wby and 378wby along with several othere weatherby's.. To me its not that the recoil is hard its fast.. My 300(same case as a 340) is a puddy cat compared to the 378(no brake on either) so I cant imagine the 340 being too bad.. I do agree about the scope and suggest a scope with the max eye relief, just to keep from having a bad day... I use a 416wby to back up hunters but if I could only choose one gun to hunt all of Alaska with it would be no question the 340.. Packs a punch when you need it and can cross a valley to plant a sheep or goat..

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    A friend of mine shot his 340 very well. I personally saw him put 2 of those slugs behind the shoulder about 1.5" apart on a running ram about 250 yards away. His father also told me how he about cut a coyote in half, again on the run, at about 300 yards or so. He's one hell of a shot, so I guess he didn't have much of a problem with the recoil. He did however tell me that one time a huge brownie poked his head into his front yard, and it was the only time he actually felt "under gunned" with it.....if you can believe that.....lol.
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    The .340 is a pretty awesome round...it's a long range killer of anything that walks.

    I hunted several years with a friend who used one exclusively- it is a devastating round for those who can tolerate the recoil. In a 10lb rifle it's not horrible, in a lightweight it's vicious.

    I watched him drop a moose at 300yds. Dropped him like a bag of hammers, I was impressed.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    .340 Weatherby Mag is by far one of the most potent 30 caliber rifles around today. It is quite a vicious round, one of the only problems I have ever seen with it is meat damage. It is quite a violent round and I've seen it damage lots of meat. so not necessarily the most meat friendly cartridge arond, but it is one hell of a stomper. Puts animals dead in their tracks normally. One of my dads hunting partner shoots one and has killed moose, sheep, caribou, goats, elk, brownies on kodiak and the peninsula, and black bear. it is his all around go-to rifle. I'm not familiar with what round he shoots anymore, but if memory recalls, I think he used to shoot a 225 gr BARNES TSX. If you put a muzzle brake on it (which IMO Vais are among the best ones in the market, and my 300 RUM is equipped with one) the recoil should not be too bad.

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    Member 10PTBUCK's Avatar
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    I have mine topped with a leupold 3.5 x 10 vari x III. The gun is heavy @ 11 lbs loaded. I also have mine magna ported so the recoil isn,t too bad Like some said it is a fast recoil, that I think is the biggest difference in the way the recoil feels. I shot a goat on kodiak this fall @ 256 yards, it does shoot really tight groups has always been my favorite gun
    Quality Taxidermy is not expensive it is PRICELESS

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    Member northernalberta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wet eNuf View Post
    All calibers have their subjective good and bad.

    I know plenty that have been scope bit with lesser weatherby calibers .. so my primary concern would be the accompanying recoil. Next set of concerns would be bullet selection as it influences the amount of bloodshot meat.
    I assume this means getting smacked in the face by the scope?

    I bought a .300 RUM in the last year, and although my shoulder can take the beating, the scope smacks me in the bridge of the nose every single shot, no matter how tight I hold it. I definitely think anything with more powder than this would be overkill for game in Alaska.

    Personally, if I had to start all over with just one caliber for every species here, I would get the 7mm magnum. A nice, flat shooting bullet with plenty of powder behind it, and not super expensive ammo like the Weatherby's.

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    Member Ernie Scar's Avatar
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    I've shot a 340 for years and I am hard pressed to say one bad thing about it. I've shot everything from gophers to grizzly bears with mine. Every bullet I've ever used except the Barnes XLC has shot very well and I've tried a bunch from the 210 Partition up to a 300 grain Kodiak. I think everyone views recoil differently by what they're willing to accept as managable and too much. Obviously it's not as enjoyable to shoot as my varmint rifles but it's never caused me to develop a flinch. I've always just used a VXII 3-9x and have never been kissed by the scope. I know some folks have mentioned meat damage as a problem but I haven't found it any worse than other calibers especially with certain bullets. I could only have just one rifle this would be it.

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    The 340 Weatherby is a great cartridge. I've been using a 330 Dakota (virtually an un-belted 340) since 2000, with excellent results. I don't think the recoil is all that stiff - with a good Decellerator pad. I have a removable muzzle brake for it that I removed which now resides in a drawer ... another piece of expensive junk. My 330 Dakota is my handloading toy. I can load it down to 338 Federal levels, or zing lighter bullets up to 3350fps, depending on my quarry. Most of the time I use a FailSafe 230 gr. @ 2900fps, although I've worked up a Barnes TTSX 225 load that has good accuracy @ 3025fps. I'll switch to the TTSX load once my supply of 230 FailSafes is exhausted. You don't have to use full power loads all the time, unless you choose to. The 340 Weatherby is excellent for all North American game. A very versatile round, with added benefits for a handloader.

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    Member Roland on the River's Avatar
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    I have a little story about the Weatherby 340. I had a sporting goods business in Soldotna. Two of my best customers were brothers. They could'nt stand to be outdone. One would buy a ruger 357, well not a week would go by the other came in and bought a 44 Super Blackhawk. One would buy a 2x7 Leopold the other had to have a 3x9. Are you getting it yet ? So the day comes when i sell the younger one a 300 WBY. You guessed it, "I want a 340 WBY" I had to order it as I didn't have one in stock. What' you got that's better ? than the 3x9 loopy my brother got ? i recomended a 1.5x5x No I want a 3.5x10x OK, done deal. Like I said good customers. Two boxes of ammo ,sling guncase etc. a couple weeks go by and D. comes in complaining the gun (the 340 ) is shooting all over the target. Check action screws, mounts etc. everything is tight. I suggest we go to the range after work. I set up the sandbags and cloverleaf 3 shots. shooting fine, give it a try. Picture this, eyes close, head turns and pow goes the round. Did i hit it he says. D, I don't have to look at the spotting scope to tell you, you have a bad flinch. It would be a miracle if the 2nd shot was within a foot of the first. I tried to be as diplomatic as possible in suggesting the caliber was a bit much for him. well, the 2nd and 3rd shot (one was off the paper) convinced him to trade me for a WBY 270cal. Yep, it bites.

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    The only time I ever got a serious scope bite was when I shot my buddies 340WBY. Blood was trickling down and dripping off my nose. 22 yrs. later I still have a faint scar (hidden by my mono brow). However, it did have a redfield widefield 3x9 scope on it and was devoid of any recoil taming devices. It's a fine caliber that kills at one end and maims at the other.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TOMCOD View Post
    It's a fine caliber that kills at one end and maims at the other.
    Now that there was funny! Those of us that have been maimed by a Weatherby can relate to your pain. Mine was "helping" my son site his new 300 Wby. I have to admit to some concern for the recoil of a 340. I do appreciate all of the responses. Doesn't seem to be much negative except the weight, and recoil. I am going to check further into a 340 Accumark with the accubrake. The Weatherby custom shop offers a mercury recoil reducer. Does anyone have any experience or knowledge about it's effect.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Patty View Post
    Now that there was funny! Those of us that have been maimed by a Weatherby can relate to your pain. Mine was "helping" my son site his new 300 Wby. I have to admit to some concern for the recoil of a 340. I do appreciate all of the responses. Doesn't seem to be much negative except the weight, and recoil. I am going to check further into a 340 Accumark with the accubrake. The Weatherby custom shop offers a mercury recoil reducer. Does anyone have any experience or knowledge about it's effect.
    Mercury recoil reducers work, but they add weight to an already heavy rifle. I used my 340 Wby last spring on a brown bear hunt. We hiked 5+ miles everyday across tundra and such. By the time we made it back to the tent I was ready to whittle off some weight. I may tweak my rifle (Mk V) to get it somewhere around 8.5 pounds ready to hunt, but until then it'll stay in the safe. I've had a couple different scopes on my rifle, but anything with 3.5+ inches of eye relief is sufficient. I did manage to shoot a brown bear (8.5 feet/26 inch skull) with it and with proper bullets and shot placement it kills as well as anything and better than most things....
    Foolishness is a moral category, not an intellectual one.

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    Member Gerberman's Avatar
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    I trust my 340 Wby's. They have served me well, downed Antelope 587 yards in Montana, 300 yard white tail deer in Montana, 124 yard Elk in Montana, 238 yard Mule deer in Oregon, 148 yard Black bear Alaska, 548 yards Moose in Canada. I have one 340 with Magna porting and one with a muzzle brake, I do not find the recoil enough to worry about, both are topped with 3.5x10 Leopold scopes. My rifles have never let me down, I know confidence helps make the shot, and I have conficence in my 340's. The 340 has more energy at 500 yards than a 243 has at the muzzle.

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