A quesion for the gun gurus. Just saw this gun today and wondered if anyone has any experience with it? Pros/cons, etc. Looking for a new gun and was about settled on a 7 MM STW, but I'm intrigued with the .325 I haven't looked at any balisitics yet and realize these 2 guns are probably quite different. Any thoughts are appreciatted
Info on the 325 WSM
I don't have a 325 WSM, but I own a 300 and 270 WSM. Go to the link I attached, there is allot of good info and would be a great place to answer some of your question's.
The .325WSM is pretty much a smaller version of the 8mm Rem Mag, except that it's in the WSM series. The 8mm Rem Mag can shoot the same bullets a little faster than the WSM version. So, you can say that the .325WSM is just another 8mm chambering.
For me it falls into a different league of uses than the 7mm STW, which I regard as a long range specialist for light to medium thin-skinned game. I've whacked moose and elk with the 7mm Rem Mag with no complaints, but my impulse for those jobs would be more bullet weight rather than more velocity for the same bullets.
Like you I'm fasacinated with the 325 anyway, guessing that it's going to fall somewhere toward the upper range of the long gap between my beloved 358 Win and a 338 Mag. Maybe better to say falling between the 35 Whelen (or 338-06) and the 338. Whichever, it looks to me like an ideal cartridge for more "poop" without going to a magnum case and bigger, heavier rifles. It is more likely to find a place in my rack as a comparatively light and handy carry rifle than something as big and bulky as a standard magnum rifle.
I doubt it's technically possible due to case diameter, but it sure would be interesting in something like a Savage 99 with a receiver sight. According to Browning's site they're going to offer the 325 in the stainless version of their BLR. That could well suit my needs without the bother and expense of rebarreling one of the dwindling supply of Savage 99 shooters (too many are disappearing into the racks of collectors).
Make a 325 light and easy to carry with ample power, and I bet it would quickly become a standard in the Alaskan bush.
I don't think it will be any more popular than the already proven 8mm Magnum, simply because there is not enough bullets and factory ammo for it. That has been the problem with the 8mm Magnum. If you look around, you will notice that there is plenty of ammo all over town for the most popular cartridges in Alaska, the .30-06, 300WM, and .338WM. In my view, ammo availability and the demand for it is what keeps some cartridges going.
Now, a cartridge that would be ideal for Alaska hunting is the .375 Taylor, but it's still a wildcat.
325 or STW...
Well, you need one of each. The STW is almost a dead number now, thanks to the Ultra Mags. It still has a folowing in the western plains and it works there. The 325 WSM is probably never going to be popular, I predict it will be the least popular of the bunch but is the most useful.
I had an opportunity a while back to load and shoot a new Kimber Montana in 325 WSM. It's owner left it with me for about six weeks and ask me to mount a scope and sight it in and work up a good load for it. He said to shoot it all I wanted. I did that. I did all that, and more. He left two boxes of facory ammo and I loaded and fired 300 rounds of various hand loads. I like the rifle and I like the caliber. I then loaded him 60 rounds of my best loads in once fired brass and stuffed his factory brass and sent the rifle on it's way. It's a dirty job but somebody has to do it.
I am a gun guy, I like rifles. I won't say the Kimber is anything to write home about, but it isn't bad. It was a little rough around the edges when I started, but it got better. I polished it here and there and cleaned and broke in the barrel correctly. I guess in this age that it is a $1000 rifle (cost about $1200). I don't like the trigger and I've never particularly liked the Winchester 3 position safety, it is good and sound but I guess I don't like the looks or the feel. It is a lot better than most out there, it is a matter of taste, I suppose.
The caliber. Well, we don't need it but I have many I don't need. If it were the only caliber I owned, I'd trade it off for something more useful. It probably not make my list of "top ten calibers". It's ballistics are better than the 300 WSM in that it can deliver heavier bullets with a little broader cross sectional area. But this margin would be of no real value in the field, except for heavier game, and then not really measurable. Also, inspite of the claims, it will, no way in hell will even get into the same ball park as the 338 Win Mag. Which makes my "top three caliber" list. But it is another caliber to experiment with and gave me something to do this past spring. (Do we have a spring in Fairbanks?)
The 8mm Rem Mag with 220 grain Swift A-frame is almost in the 338 Win Mag category, but not quite. It is flatter shooting and at times that could be an advantage, but for my hunting needs, which is pretty much limited to 300ish yards, I'll take the 338. The 325 WSM is a full 200+ fps behind the big eight.
So. I fear Winchester has created another Redheaded Stepchild. Good shootin'.
P.S. I will edit this to add a couple of notes. I don't dislike this caliber, I think it the best of the WSM's I would just prefer the 338 WSM. I don't think it will last. Also I did not find any shortage of good bullets. Locally the supply was low but I ordered from my favorite supplier and Nosler PT and A/B, Swift A-frame and Scirroco, Barnes X's, Hornady and Speer have offerings, the failing for me is the range of weights. 180-220 is about it. But those are enough to do what it will do. I still believe it should be a 338 WSM. Good shootin'.
Last edited by Murphy; 07-10-2006 at 14:37.
From a purely selfish perspective, I think the .325WSM is fabulous.
I don't own one or anything. Can't afford to buy one.
No, the greatest beauty of the .325WSM in my eyes is that they're manufacturing more premium bullets in .323 since it came out.
And those of us who are keen to load top-quality bullets for our 8x57s are reaping the benefits.
Will the arrival of top-notch bullets in .323 lead to a resurgence in the 8mm Rem. Mag? Will the .325WSM hold on and fill the niche that rifle never did? Those of us who like throwing a heavier bullet than the '06 does well with, but can't take the pounding of a .338 sure hope so...
ignore the hype, avenue to sell new guns and ammo, don't blame them but, don't fall for it.
Just like it has been stated, stick with the known and available cartridges.
I have posted my shooting experience (range only!) neat toy, moderate recoil, definitely lighter than the 338wm, if you need a new toy, and don't expect tight 5 round groups, but the now standard three round group; which is more hunting realistic, it shoots great.
Dare you to find ammo though. The basic Winchester silver box 220grain is great, on target, I would be more concerned with repetitive same poi first shots from a cold barrel.
I have always wanted to do this but, I like shooting too much.
ONE TARGET, take your weapon, your ammo to the range. Clean bore, cold bore, same distance, same target, same weather conditions (hot cold, wet dry) and shoot ONCE.
Go back later that day or later and repeat. Now if you can get the first round to repeat the same point of impact for multiple shots then I would be very satisfied and very confident in the rig and cartridge.
But Hey, if you need a new toy GO FOR IT.
Before there was new registration for this site I have been reading all the posts since 05'. Pay attention to those guys up there who really use their rifles, the guides , the backwoodsmen, they know what they are talking about.
They all have loads of guns, you should see the moderators list of weapons in response to shooting routine, GEEZZZ if I could only have all those toys!
Bet ya when put to it they would all have their 'go-to" gun, maybe two.
Read some articles from the late Finn Aagard.
I could not believe he carried a beat up 30-06 that he modified, fixed, but shot often. That was his gun,...... most of the time...............he loved guns too.
I ran onto the old post while looking for 416 WSM wildcat info - Has anyone changed their mind about the 325 WSM at this point ? I know I sure have !
I've been interested in the cartridge, but don't really need one. There is also the issue of it's longevity. Although I think it has capabilities, i think the 300 and 270 WSM overshadow it in popularity, and for many the .323 bullet diameter may be a dealbreaker due to it being less popular and having less bullets available for reloading. My guess is it will turn out to be one of those cartridges that will gradually fade away, but will have a small but loyal following among those who own one.
I will have to, at this point, disagree with you on that one - It isn't a 338 win mag for sure but quite efficient and as far as "tight groups" go it will out shoot alot of them - 325 WSM Abolts shoot 200 accubonds in factory form to sub MOA with starting regularity and my 2 Montana's shoot 220 game kings to 3/4" all day long - they feed the smoothest of the WSM's and seem to attain the posted velocities as suggested (as do the other WSM's) NOW, the WSSM are a different story but let's not "knock a new thing just because it is new" ...
another point to add is that, I personally, although quite able to carry a 10# rifle all day long would MUCH rather pack a 7 lb'er that gives equal authority and most seem to fill that bill just fine
When I bought my M48 in .300WSM there was an identical rifle in .325WSM right beside it...
Although I'm happy with the .300- I wonder a lot about whether I should have picked the .325 instead.
"Only accurate rifles are interesting"
Not my words of course, but so true. Precision in a rifle makes up for many smaller shortcomings.
You reloading? If not, price the factory ammo before your write the check.
I like mine though. New to hunting and careful about where I bought a rifle (2008), I'm still tickled with this one-my first. It's accurate well-crafted and effective. Pleasure to carry besides.
I think this is where the "wsm" shines and especially the 325, in the rifles you can get it in. A 200gr .323 bullet at 2950ish or a 220gr at 2800ish that shoots sub moa in a 23inch barreled 7lb rifle including scope and sling is a nice package. A "do it all" rifle for most. If these light, accurate rifles weren't available then a guy may as well just get a 338.
Originally Posted by back country
For you Kimber owners. I had mine Mag-na-ported and it totally tamed the muzzle flip of the light barrel Kimber. I highly recommend it.
NATTY BUMPO. As far as .323 bullets, there are as many as a guy would ever want. Too many for me to even begin to try and list. Lack of bullets is a myth. Hornady, Swift, Sierra, Remington, Nosler, Barnes and Berger all make .323 bullets. Winchester has thier new super bullet. Everything from 150gr Hornadys up to 220gr Swift A-Frames. 200gr Nosler Accubonds and Partitions, 180 and 200gr TSX's, 185gr Rem Core-Lokts and I think Berger still makes some 250gr. I've setteld on 200gr AB's at 2935fps and 220 Sierra Game-Kings at 2800. The Sierra GK's were designed specifically for the 8mm Rem mag and have thicker jackets than other GK's. Both loads are sub moa in my Kimber.