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Thread: Which rifle to keep: 338 Win Mag or 375 Ruger?

  1. #1
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    Default Which rifle to keep: 338 Win Mag or 375 Ruger?

    Guys,
    I have two Ruger M77s. One is chambered in 338 Win Mag (stainless rifle) and the other is chambered in 375 Ruger (has the 20" barrel and black stainless finish). Both rifles have black hogue stocks. I enjoy collecting and shooting firearms but just have not had the time to shoot mine much lately. I don't need both of these rifles.

    Other than collecting I enjoy hunting. Thus far I have enjoyed moose hunting and caribou hunting. I've managed to kill two caribou (one using the 338). I sold a semiautomatic black rifle to fund the 375 purchase.

    Which of the two would you sell/keep? I'm leaning towards getting rid of the 338 for no other reason that the 375 is shorter, easier to carry, and I shoot it better. Also, I reload and have dies/brass for both rifles.

    Lastly, I don't really need to sell either. I suppose if I moved one of them, I'd put the money towards some swarovski binoculars or maybe a 45 LC DA revolver. Your input is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  2. #2
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    My avatar would seem to indicate an obvious answer but, if you are more comfortable with and shoot the .375 Ruger better than the .338WM, keep the .375. Or, keep them both.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueDuck View Post
    I'm leaning towards getting rid of the 338 for no other reason that the 375 is shorter, easier to carry, and I shoot it better.
    That makes the choice real easy. Why keep a gun that's harder to carry and you don't shoot as well?

    I faced a similar choice about 30 years ago. I had a 338 Ruger #1 with a ported 26" barrel. It was a joy to shoot and the most accurate 338 I've ever seen. But it was a PITA to carry, and being a single shot, not my first choice in bear guns. I also had two 375 H&H's- one with a 26" heavy barrel that was also a joy to shoot and accurate. The second had only a 22" barrel, was an even 7# without a scope, and beat the holy crap out of me. But it was a joy to carry and it was accurate even with iron sights.

    Guess what happened? The 338 has been gone so long I don't even remember who I sold it to. Same for that long 375. Both were "better" guns than that short, light 375 that was no fun at all to shoot. I still own that miserable shooting light 375. Bluing has been gone for years. Stock has more dings than flat spots. It's never had a scope on it. But it gets carried all the time and has been my constant companion. Lotta different measuring sticks for "better."

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    I really like both rifles. They seem to overlap each other in the ballistic realm, especially with similar weight bullets. I suspect the .338 shoots a bit flatter (with like weight bullets). If they were not so close in that regard, I would not consider getting rid of one of them.

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    My choice would be to keep the 338WM and sell the 375 'IF' I had to get rid of one of them. As far as the 338WM being a pain to carry, and you like the 20" barrel of the 375, cut the barrel of the 338WM to 20". The model 70 338WM that I have shot for over 40+ years, had the barrel cut to 20" shortly after I got it. I used to carry it for as a back up rifle when bow hunting with friends. It slowly turned into my primary hunting rifle. Since you reload, you can reload bullets as light as 160 screamers to some heavy 275/300 grainers. While I have not shot the 375, I am sure that the caliber is nice. I know people that do have 375's and they really like them.
    I am fond of the 338WM and have three of them, one my primary hunting rifle, one a 'project' rifle and the wife's Savage 116.

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    Default Which rifle to keep: 338 Win Mag or 375 Ruger?

    You live in big bear country, keep the big gun. Particularly since you shoot it better. Load up a variety of weights of bullets an don't look back.

    I've got loads from 220-300gr for my .375 and the point of impact is surprisingly close for all of them at 100 yards.


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    Quote Originally Posted by limon32 View Post
    You live in big bear country, keep the big gun. Particularly since you shoot it better. Load up a variety of weights of bullets an don't look back.

    I've got loads from 220-300gr for my .375 and the point of impact is surprisingly close for all of them at 100 yards.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I'm currently hand loading 235 grain Barnes TSXs for the 375 and I have some 165 grain TTSXs for the 338 (intend to use the 165 grain bullets for Caribou). Both are fine rifles with out a doubt. I just wish their ballistics did not overlap so much (I should have researched more prior to buying the 375).

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    Of the two you have the 375 Ruger is the more efficient and you like it AND you shoot it better - Use the money from the 338 to get yourself a Tikka T3 superlight 30.06, work up a load for 150 Nosler Etips and you have the perfect "arsenal" for AK

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    I'd keep the .375... easy choice. You report it's better to carry and you shoot it better....good enough reasons for me.

    Overkill? Yeah, but "too dead" is not nearly the problem that "not dead enough" presents.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    Believe it or not I would keep the 338. Why? Because if in the likelihood that you draw a bison permit the 338 will allow you to engage at about 50-75 yards further than the 375 ruger. This might be the deal breaker if you are hunting openings and you only get one shot on a big bull.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kaboku68 View Post
    Believe it or not I would keep the 338. Why? Because if in the likelihood that you draw a bison permit the 338 will allow you to engage at about 50-75 yards further than the 375 ruger. This might be the deal breaker if you are hunting openings and you only get one shot on a big bull.
    OH ! I hadn't read the "bison" part ........

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    Quote Originally Posted by back country View Post
    Of the two you have the 375 Ruger is the more efficient and you like it AND you shoot it better - Use the money from the 338 to get yourself a Tikka T3 superlight 30.06, work up a load for 150 Nosler Etips and you have the perfect "arsenal" for AK
    That sounds like a pretty darned good idea man. Thanks!

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    Fifty years from now the 338winmag will still be here.Not feeling the ruger rounds will make ten more years. The 338 with 270gr or so up close and 200gr for out there.With some of the money add sights and then get the 45colt.
    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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    I have shot three different 338 win in three different rifles. They are not a joy to shoot. Sharp recoil. The 375 has heavy recoil, but is more of a push and in my opinion "easier" to shoot. Are you ever planning on hunting Africa, or going after coastal bears? The 375 would get the nod. Shooting similar bullets for caliber, each gun shoot about the same ballistically. A 250g TTSX in the 375 is VERY close to the same as a 210g TTSX in the 338. I would vote for the 375, it is what I carry. Easy to reload. Get a bunch of brass, RL 15, and your favorite bullet. Done deal.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by kaboku68 View Post
    Believe it or not I would keep the 338. Why? Because if in the likelihood that you draw a bison permit the 338 will allow you to engage at about 50-75 yards further than the 375 ruger. This might be the deal breaker if you are hunting openings and you only get one shot on a big bull.
    Looking at text book loading data, the 375 Ruger with a 24" barrel will push 260 grains flatter than a 338 WM will with 24" barrel with 250 grains. Now, by my own calculation, the drop between the 375's 260 grains with a 20" barrel and 338's 250 grains with a 24" barrel is equal at 400 yds. It's like splitting hairs in the 230-275 grain range. The difference being that the 338 shoots lighter bullets faster than the 375 and the 375 can shoot heavier loads.

    I agree that the idea of selling the 338 WM for a 30-06 is a really hard to beat system.

    I also have to respectfully disagree with Amigo Will. The 375 Ruger is not going away. It may have gotten a slow start but it's now being chambered by at least 4 major manufacturers in well designed and built rifles for much less than 375 H&H offerings.

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    No one really wants to sell their guns. I have sold some unused favorites. Keep whatever you have the most confidence in. Load up(pun intended) with cases etc. you don't know how long the .375Ruger will last as far as popularity goes.
    Upgrading optics is always a good goal.
    first world problems

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    Fifty years from now the 338winmag will still be here.Not feeling the ruger rounds will make ten more years. The 338 with 270gr or so up close and 200gr for out there.With some of the money add sights and then get the 45colt.
    Unfortunately, I will not be around in wither 50 years either . I suspect I'll keep them both as they are each very versatile in their own unique ways (as you guys have so well articulated). I suppose I'm off to collect more change from beneath the couch and cushions

  18. #18

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    Traditional muzzleloaders have been around for centuries. T'was me, I'd dump one of those rifles and pick up a sidelock flinter or capper to open more new hunting doors....

    Oh wait.....

    I've been doing that for over 10 years now!

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by BrownBear View Post
    Traditional muzzleloaders have been around for centuries. T'was me, I'd dump one of those rifles and pick up a sidelock flinter or capper to open more new hunting doors....

    Oh wait.....

    I've been doing that for over 10 years now!
    Me too, I have a CVA Accura Black Nitride inline that is a ballistic twin of a 444 Marlin yet I walk out the morning in the cool fall air with an old side hammer. Been thinking about another TC Cherokee in 32 for squirrels.

    Getting back on topic.....I like the Ruger 375 and I think it has garnered enough following to be around a while. However Will is spot on with most of the other new WSM's and Remington and Ruger's versions there of. The 300WSM might make it but some of the others have already been dropped.

    What I have noticed the last few years is that I have passed on some nice tang safety 77's in both 7mm mag and 338 Win mag that were around the $400 mark for good clean ones.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    Been thinking about another TC Cherokee in 32 for squirrels.
    Welcome to the dark side! It's insidious.

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