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Thread: Ruger .338

  1. #1

    Default Ruger .338

    Today I went on my quest to find my gun, the gun I've dreamed about for the past year- my first big game hunting rifle. After doing much research I thought a 30.06 would definately be the way to go however I was quickly persuaded by the staff and apparent long time guides of Sportsmans Warehouse that a .338 is the way to go. I was told it can and will take down absoltutly anything I can dream of hunting in Alaska as with the 30.06 Brown bears would be a hard possibility. I was shown a Ruger .338 with synthetic stock and free rings for 499$ or 599$ (How could I forget the price?!?) I was also told the .338 and 30-06 share very similar recoil, which is important being I'm around 5'7 and 135 pounds. - Basically what I'm asking is what do you think of this gun and do any of you own it? I know Ruger is a fantastic brand but have never read much of their .338's -

    P.S I will be buying a leupold scope to outfit this gun if it all works out

    -Thanks for all the help and Regards-


  2. #2


    Get with your dentist for a mobility test. What he will do is check how tight your teeth are seated in to your gums.

  3. #3


    Ruger part is OK, Leupold is a great idea. 338 better for large bear, yes. 338 and 30 06 in same recoil range-NADA, not happening. Much better to start with the always reliable good ol 06!

  4. #4
    Big Stick


    The current handles are better than the old,regarding butt cross section,but they are still excellent at magnifying felt recoil values......................

  5. #5

    Default .338 recoil

    I'm not going to say that you won't be able to handle the recoil of a .338 Winchester Magnum, because all of us have different, uh, pain threshholds. But, it was, in my opinion, irresponsible for anyone at Sportsman's to suggest to you that the 30-06 and .338 have similar recoil. They do not. In the same model gun with the same style and material of stock, the .338 has a much higher level of felt recoil. There are several reasons the .338 kicks harder, but mainly you are normally firing a heavier bullet with more powder behind it then with the 30-06. The normal heavy bullet for the .30-06 is 180 to 200 grs. while the .338 shoots a 225 to 250 bullet, though there are lighter bullets available loaded and for reloading. Have you fired either a .30-06 or .338 before your purchase? That is always helpful. Believe it or not, people of average build and weight often don't suffer from felt recoil as much as heavier larger shooters. At any rate, I hope you enjoy your new rifle and take your share of game.

  6. #6

    Default I'm LOST

    I understand your interested in a Ruger and you looked at one in 338 caliber. But what ammunition did it shoot ? 338 Win Mag, 338 RCM,or 338 Federal.
    All will have different recoil levels. They may not be the horse you want to ride.
    " Americans will never need the 2nd Amendment, until the government tries to take it away."

    On the road of life..... Pot holes keep things interesting !

  7. #7


    I looked at a federal and win mag

  8. #8


    Good point about which 338. If it is the 338 federal then the recoil levels would be similar between it and an 06. If it is any of the others refer to previous posts!

  9. #9


    Unless you reload, which I dont believe you do, I wouldn't be jumping on the 338 Federal as very little ammo is available for it. Just some food for thought, you couldn't possibly be comparing recoil between a 338WM and a 30-06, they aint even close.

  10. #10



    You might consider the .325 Win. Mag, more energy than the .338, less recoil.


    "Felt recoil is subjective, but when I subjected my shoulder to a half-dozen rounds of .325 WSM 200-grain Accubonds off the bench, I didn't think the M70 kicked any more than a .300 Win. Mag. in a similar-weight rifle. My hunting partners judged it about the same."

  11. #11
    Big Stick


    Bullet selection is much more important than cartridge selection............

  12. #12


    Seriously, 338 mags are not for the guy buying his first gun. I would not put the 325 WSM in that category either. Think REAL hard...30 06.

  13. #13


    I was also shown a 7mm- Was told it is a very accurate and long range gun usually used for sheep etc.

  14. #14


    It's the nut behind the trigger the mostly makes a rifle sing.

  15. #15

    Default Welcome

    That's what I have to say, too the world of constructive outdoor forums.
    While the Ruger rifle youv'e chosen/looked at will give you a lifetime of useful service(properly maintained). The round you ultimately choose might limit how much you like to use your new rifle.
    The 338 WinMag is a very potent and well accepted round, it will deliver approx. 33 lbs of felt recoil to the shooter( w/250grn). 20 lbs is considered about max for being conducive to good shooting.
    The 30-06 has approx. 20 lbs of recoil and might allow you to shoot more and become a better marksman. 30-06 ammo is about 2/3 what 338 ammo is in cost.
    A quality projectile will dispatch the majority of animals that walk on TERRA-FIRMA with proper markmanship .
    " Americans will never need the 2nd Amendment, until the government tries to take it away."

    On the road of life..... Pot holes keep things interesting !

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    North Pole



    Lots of good advice here. Do you have any friends or acquaintances that own any of the calibers and model(s) of rifles you are interested in? If so, shooting them at the range will give you a really good idea of what you're getting into. At the very least, handle as many of these rifles as possible at gun shops to see how they feel and figure out what features you like best. As for which caliber to choose, that's a highly subjective topic (Ford/Chevy/Dodge argument) yet in my view, a sensible minimum caliber would be the 30-06 for most Alaskan hunting. If you want to go bigger...nothin wrong with that.

    If you don't handload your own ammo, then you'll be buying it somewhere. Lots of folks speak highly of the new magnum catridges that have come on the scene in the last ten years. They are powerful, there's no denying that but when you really peel back the onion skin, they don't do anything a standard or classic magnum caliber doesn't do. So, be careful about getting sucked into the hype that the new .483 Schutzenblastinhassenpfeffer will somehow magically kill moose when the lowly 30-06 won't. It just ain't is classic American marketing at its best.

  17. #17


    .338 Win Mag is definately one of the all time greats as far as big game rifles are concerned, but as far as your first big game rifle... sounds like the guys at the Warehouse were a little overzealous in promoting the .338. The recoil of a .30-06 is much more tame than a .338. i believe most people can handle the .30-06 with adequate practice. but if you go and shoot your new Ruger, which is definately a nice rifle, and you hate the recoil, are scared of the muzzle blast, and end up developing a flinch, ALL before actually hunting any big game with it... you might decide you never want to kill any big game. Besides, if you havent ever killed any big game before, is a Grizzly or Brownie really the first thing you wanna go after? Is there really a need for an allpurpose rifle? Look up some of Murphys posts they will definately be helpful. I hope you find a rifle that suits your needs and wants, whether its the .30-06 or the allmighty .338 Win Mag!

  18. #18


    Ive been thinking about this and have decided to go back to the 30.06, glad I didnt jump the gun and get unplesently suprised, thanks alot for your imput everyone - As far as I saw Rugar was the only brand carried at Sportsmans and it was 500- anyone know a good place for a Stainless steel 30-06, Rugar or Remmington? Also considering the Savage 30-06 at sportsmans

  19. #19


    On the note of friends with guns, nope- Learning hunting by myself, buying the gun with my money, only thing parents are involved with is their names on the registration- wish I was born into a hunting family but I'm glad atleast I was born into a fishing family which opened doors to hunting

  20. #20


    1 more question - What do you guys have your 30-06's sighted in for 150, 200 yds? ( For black bear hunting )

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