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Thread: 338 Win Mag

  1. #1

    Default 338 Win Mag

    I'm buying an A-Bolt in 338 Win Mag. I'll be using it for Elk mostly, but it will also be a Moose and Bear gun. What do you think? Anything else to consider? Someone mentioned having it rechambered to 340 weatherby.

  2. #2

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    Good choice, Sean. I'd think long and hard about the rechambering, both for the access to ammo and velocity returns on your expenses. I've owned a couple of 340's over the years, and neither showed me enough to keep me from eventually replacing them with 338's. Going the other way isn't going to give you anywhere near enough change in trajectory or terminal performance to justify the gunsmithing fees and ammo hassles. But on the other hand, if owning 340 simply makes you feel good, by all means the money is well spent!

  3. #3

    Default

    BB, Thanks for the info. I don't put any more value on Weatherby cartridges than the ballistics they put up and you have a good point with cost vs. benefit! I shoot a 300 WSM and 7mm-08, but I'm looking for something bigger, something that will anchor what I shoot right to the ground. This isn't a replacement gun, just my next gun.

  4. #4
    Member Casper50's Avatar
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    Default

    I've owned my .338 for 12 years now. I've taken brown bear, black bear, caribou and elk with it. Everything that I've shot has been a one shot kill. I use 250 hornady. I've always wanted a .375 H&H but I can't justify buying one while owning the .338. My 2 cents. Good luck.

  5. #5

    Default .338 A-Bolt

    I have carried one since 1991. Used to shoot the Federal Premiums with 250 grain Nosler Partitions. If you want to anchor, this will do it. As long as you are doing your part, it will make one shot kills. I have shot moose and caribou with mine and all were one shot kills.

  6. #6
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    Default

    I began hunting later in life, right after retiring form the military in Alaska. I bought a .338WM stainless/synthetic Ruger rifle back in '92, topped it with a matte Leupold Vary-X III 2.5-8x, and a few years later I replaced the boat paddle stock with a Hogue Rubber-Obermolded one.

    Once I learned moose anatomy and realized where I had to place the shot, I learned just to do that and let the bullet do its work. My one-shot kills began with the second moose I killed. This one I shot with a 230-grain Lubalox-coated FS. I aimed a little low on the chest, and to barely miss the shoulder bone as the moose stood broadside eating birch leaves. But the FS hit the near shoulder bone, clipped the heart arteries on top of the heart, broke the far shoulder, and exited. I was somewhat impressed with the rifle's performance, but I became really impressed when I continued dropping on the spot (or pretty close to it) the moose that followed. After that I didn't get exited as much when seeing a moose, and spent the excess energy to place my shots with care. I usually take the shot from a stationary position on a high point, and don't give moose the time to realize what has happened. I stay in place watching the spot the moose drop, and walk to it 15 minutes later. That's all there is to it, and that's when the real work begins. After the photo session the excitement of the hunt is all over, and where taking care of the meat as if it was made of gold begins.

    I like the .338WM because of the heavy bullets for it, starting at 225 grains and ending at 300. The 180-grain loads from Federal have a similar trajectory as the .300WM with a bullet of the same design, but in my view the lighter bullets is what the .300WM is better at.

  7. #7
    Member alaska bush man's Avatar
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    Thumbs up 338 Win

    The Orginal Alaskan Cal......the 338 win in the Win 70 "Alaskan" still my opening day gun!

    Win 70 SS custom stocked
    Leupold 3.5x10 BC
    Warne QR Rings in Warne Bases

    I handload using Nosler 225 AB and Reloader 19.......very fine rifle!
    Alaska

  8. #8

    Default .338

    Going on 32 years of loving the .338 Win. Mag. and 250 grain bullets. Is there a better combo out there for Alaskan big game ?

  9. #9
    Member tccak71's Avatar
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    Default

    You may want to think about other than factory rings if you buy a .338. My factory (Ruger) rings won't keep slipping and they don't have much contact on the scope. Everytime I shoot the gun the rings slip, I suppose due to recoil.

    The gunsmith I met shooting at Birchwood the other day recommended the Warne rings that someone else mentioned and having them lapped-which I believe means having the high spots taken out so there is more contact on the scope.

    Tim

  10. #10
    Member shphtr's Avatar
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    Default 338 alternative

    Actually I would recommend (as everyone previously has) of staying with the 338 WM. It's a lotta gun. If you feel the need to take a step up in the same caliber then you should prob be looking at a 338 RUM or a 338 Lapua...just make sure you know what you are getting into. These chamberings will essentially extend the range...if you think you will be needing to shoot your game out beyond 300 to 400 yards. Get an accurate 338 with a premium 250 gr bullet and rugged scope, spend sufficient time at the range to become proficient and then spend your time hunting.

  11. #11
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    Default not compatible

    Quote Originally Posted by seaniffd View Post
    I'm buying an A-Bolt in 338 Win Mag. I'll be using it for Elk mostly, but it will also be a Moose and Bear gun. What do you think? Anything else to consider? Someone mentioned having it rechambered to 340 weatherby.
    last I checked a .340 weatherby is a magnum length cartridge like a .375 H&H or .416 Rem mag.

    The .338 win mag is a standard length round like the .30-'06 or .264 win mag and 7mm rem mag.

    Your rechamber would have to be a single shot loaded 1 round at a time directly into the chamber since the mag would be too short.

    The .338 is fine for all you want to do....just go with good heavy bullets like 250 grainers and you will never be dissappointed.

    jedi

  12. #12

    Default Browning Stainless Stalker .338

    You can't find a better gun and caliber for Alaska, bar none. The .340 Weatherby is a fine cartridge in it's own right, but the .338 Win Mag is the premier thumper, especially with 250 grain Nosler Partitions. The Browning Stainless Stalker is one of the very best. I own 3 right now. My VERY favorite caliber for most big game is my .280 Remington Stainless Stalker but when I am hunting in bear country, I will grab my .338 nearly every time.

    There is absolutely no reason to rechamber or go bigger for Alaska hunting. I own a Browning Stainless Stalker in .375 H&H, but my favorite is still my .338 S.S. Stick with Partitions or equivilant bullets, and you can't go wrong.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  13. #13
    Member barrowdave's Avatar
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    Default Second to All

    On the .338wm. My son and I both have Ruger MKII's in .338 and use Federal Premium 250 Nosler Partitions. Couldn't ask for anything more in the "one shot, one kill" department.

  14. #14

    Talking

    Thanks for the input. I'm leaning towards the A-Bolt in 338, but I like the weight of the Rugers much better. Some of you may cry foul at the idea of more weight, but I spent most of my youth carrying an 03 Springfield, which did a fair job of conditioning me. I got spoiled with my Remington Mt rifle, but like the prodigal son, I've returned to where men pee standing up!

  15. #15
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Default

    If you can't kill it with a 338, it's not due to a lack of terminal performance.

    I have heard of several folks that have had problems with a-bolts rusting up, as well as broken trigger guards.

    Rugers are rock solid hunting rifles, the most gun for the $ IMHO. They do need a trigger job out of the box, but other then that, you can't beat them. They are also typically quite accurate in my experience, this was the first handload I shot out of my 350 rem mag Ruger.


  16. #16

    Default Ruger vs. Browning

    Rugers are outstanding, no doubt about it. I own several of them, too. I do not like the Ruger synthetic stock at all. If you put it in a decent stock, it is right there at the top, right along with the Browning. I have heard of a couple of BLUED Browning rifles rusting quicker than normal, but have never seen or heard of a Stainless Stalker having any problems.
    I have fallen on one of mine, slid down a chute while sheep hunting, and the guns held up solid.

    Whichever one of these you choose, you can't go wrong.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  17. #17

    Default

    Yeah them Ruger 338 WM's sure are ugly huh?


  18. #18

    Default Ruger stocks

    No, not with that stock. Looks good to me. I should have clarified I was talking about the older style Ruger synthetic stock, with the hollow forearms. Those are terrible.
    Now just why in the hell do I have to press "1" for English???

  19. #19

    Default

    I was just teezing Hawken. I never liked the old boat paddles myself in appearance but they were and are **** near indestructible. That McMillan on mine does change its look but its also more comfortable to shoot too.

  20. #20
    Member SoggyMountain's Avatar
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    Default

    Some people survived the boat paddle by being left handed.

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