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Thread: .338 win mag 300 gr.?

  1. #1
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    Default .338 win mag 300 gr.?

    Hey all, first post here. About 3 years ago I bought a box of factory winchester super x, .338 win mag, 300 grain power-point soft points. I am going for a brownie and a moose this year and would like to get an idea of what to expect with this round or if I should use something else. I have not been able find ballistics or bullet performance charts/info anywhere on the web or any other source as most tables stop at 250 gr. Anyone know why the 300 gr. has fell out of favor? Thanks.

    p.s. A big thank you to all who post here. I have gained alot of knowledge from your willingness to share.

  2. #2

    Smile My thoughts....

    I have been using a .338 Win. Mag. for 33 years. Almost all of the animals have been taken with a 250 Nosler Partition or Barnes X bullet. A couple were taken with the 225 grain Barnes X. Some of todays "super bullets" are so good we can use lighter weight bullets then we would have 20 years ago. In many cases they "out perform" the heavy bullets when it comes to animals approaching the 1,000 lb. mark. That is why demand for the 300 grain bullet decreased. Because most of my shots are taken under 150 yards and because I am to old to change for the most part, I still use 250 grain bullets. Probably the best all around Alaskan bullet for the .338 is a 225 grain in Swift, Barnes X or another "super bullet". For moose and brown bear you are never wrong with a 250 grain Nosler Partition, Barnes X, Swift, etc. These bullets leaving the muzzle between 2,600 and 2,850 feet per second are plenty flat shooting for Alaskan hunting and give very deep straight line penetration as they enter and leave the animal. Long live the .338 Win. Mag.!

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    I have been using a .338 Win. Mag. for 33 years. Almost all of the animals have been taken with a 250 Nosler Partition or Barnes X bullet. A couple were taken with the 225 grain Barnes X. Some of todays "super bullets" are so good we can use lighter weight bullets then we would have 20 years ago. In many cases they "out perform" the heavy bullets when it comes to animals approaching the 1,000 lb. mark. That is why demand for the 300 grain bullet decreased. Because most of my shots are taken under 150 yards and because I am to old to change for the most part, I still use 250 grain bullets. Probably the best all around Alaskan bullet for the .338 is a 225 grain in Swift, Barnes X or another "super bullet". For moose and brown bear you are never wrong with a 250 grain Nosler Partition, Barnes X, Swift, etc. These bullets leaving the muzzle between 2,600 and 2,850 feet per second are plenty flat shooting for Alaskan hunting and give very deep straight line penetration as they enter and leave the animal. Long live the .338 Win. Mag.!

    Pretty good advice! As to why the 300 grain fell out of favor? My guess is America is pretty brain washed on velocity. The 300 grain load at something like 2400 FPS muzzle velocity did not get the hearts to go pitter patter. Besides the 338 is thought of as a longer range hard hitting round and the 300 grainer did not offer that long range reach. I also heard reports that it was constructed too hard and did not offer the best terminal performance because it was slow to open up. Do not fret, any good 225-250 grain bullet will do everything that needs to be done with a 338!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmeh View Post
    Hey all, first post here. About 3 years ago I bought a box of factory winchester super x, .338 win mag, 300 grain power-point soft points. I am going for a brownie and a moose this year and would like to get an idea of what to expect with this round or if I should use something else. I have not been able find ballistics or bullet performance charts/info anywhere on the web or any other source as most tables stop at 250 gr. Anyone know why the 300 gr. has fell out of favor? Thanks.

    p.s. A big thank you to all who post here. I have gained alot of knowledge from your willingness to share.

    I don't think Winchester (Olin) ever made a 300 grain power point load for the 338 mag. I may be wrong but I don't think they ever made such, in recent years anyway. If you still have the box of ammo check it again it may be 200 grain power points and if so that isn't bear ammo. What will work fine is any good 250 grain load with a Nosler partition or Swift A-frame or Barnes TSX (probably just 225 grain).
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



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    Just dug out an old Lyman reloading manual. There's no cover so I don't know how old it is but I'm guessing late 70s or early 80s. Anyways,I remember it had a section in the back with a list of factory ammo that Lyman chronographed. These velocities were measured at 15' from the muzzle from a 24"bbl Winchester Mod70.
    .338 Winchester Magnum w/Winchester factory ammo
    200gr @ 2958fps
    250gr @ 2631fps
    300gr @ 2421fps

    The load data section does not list a 300gr bullet for the .338 Winchester Mag or .340 Weatherby Mag so I'm guessing there was no component bullet in 300gr offered at that time.

    Hope this helps.


    til later

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    I don't think Winchester (Olin) ever made a 300 grain power point load for the 338 mag. I may be wrong but I don't think they ever made such, in recent years anyway. If you still have the box of ammo check it again it may be 200 grain power points and if so that isn't bear ammo. What will work fine is any good 250 grain load with a Nosler partition or Swift A-frame or Barnes TSX (probably just 225 grain).

    Hello Murphy. I am new to being a member here, but have read a lot and certainly respect your wisdom. But Winchester did make 300 grain loads. I did not have a 338 at the time but remember seeing them on the shelves back in the mid 1960's. I also have some old articles that discuss them, some written by Jack O'conner. I pulled out one of these references and sure enough there was an article about the 338 and 300 grain factory loads.

  7. #7

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    Woodleigh makes a 300gr. softpoint and solid both with a B.C. of over .410 and a sectional density of .375. They should make for heck of a big game round and shoot end to end on a whale LOL!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Storm56 View Post
    Hello Murphy. I am new to being a member here, but have read a lot and certainly respect your wisdom. But Winchester did make 300 grain loads. I did not have a 338 at the time but remember seeing them on the shelves back in the mid 1960's. I also have some old articles that discuss them, some written by Jack O'conner. I pulled out one of these references and sure enough there was an article about the 338 and 300 grain factory loads.

    Yes you're right. Winchestern Western, the old yellow and white box with the big red W on it was made way back then and that was loaded with the Barnes 300 grain "Original" bullet. I think the later loads were Super-X but it hasn't been made for decades and the Western ammo was discontinued before I got out of high school.

    I thought the poster said he recently bought a 300 grain power point ammo which I believe I stated was made by Winchester/Olin, that name "power point", and it isn't made in 300 grain 338.

    I have a box of Winchester/Western 338 mag with the 300 grain round nose soft point from about 1960 which goes quite well with my 1959 model 70. Thanks for allowing me a chance to straighten things out a bit. I think his question was about the ballistics and I think 300S&W answered it for him.

    Another point here is that no American bullet company makes a 300 grain .338 diameter bullet anymore and haven't since probably about 1980 and that was the aforementioned Barnes, with the possible exception of Woodleigh, which is Austrailian.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    Yes you're right. Winchestern Western, the old yellow and white box with the big red W on it was made way back then and that was loaded with the Barnes 300 grain "Original" bullet. I think the later loads were Super-X but it hasn't been made for decades and the Western ammo was discontinued before I got out of high school.

    I thought the poster said he recently bought a 300 grain power point ammo which I believe I stated was made by Winchester/Olin, that name "power point", and it isn't made in 300 grain 338.

    I have a box of Winchester/Western 338 mag with the 300 grain round nose soft point from about 1960 which goes quite well with my 1959 model 70. Thanks for allowing me a chance to straighten things out a bit. I think his question was about the ballistics and I think 300S&W answered it for him.

    Another point here is that no American bullet company makes a 300 grain .338 diameter bullet anymore and haven't since probably about 1980 and that was the aforementioned Barnes, with the possible exception of Woodleigh, which is Austrailian.
    Here's another factor to stir into the mix. I first started shooting 338's back when the 300 grain ammo was still generally available. And it didn't shoot worth a hoot out of any Model 70 I was around! I finally ended up handloading the Speer 275 grain semi RNs. They shot like a house afire and really performed well on game, too.

    I don't miss the 300 grainers and wonder if other folks had the accuracy problems with them that seemed pretty standard among the folks I knew.

    But I sure miss those Speer 275's!!!! When those finally petered out I kind of lost interest in the caliber. The 250 grain partitions were in truth probably better, but I had moved on to other interests by the time that dawned on me.

  10. #10
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    I fooled around with Swift A-Frame 275 grain bullets. My 338 WinMag has a shorter barrel (20") and velocity was consistently under 2500 fps, which is what I believe is the lowest necessary velocity to realize that bullet's optimum expansion. A-Frames in 250 grain average around 2600 fps, and that is what I've shot out of that rifle the most.

    I took a 6'8" black bear this spring with that rifle shooting 225 grain A-Frames. Those loads haven't been timed, but one shot did the trick quite well. Unfortunately, it exited the bear and wasn't retrieved.

    Overall, with that particular rifle, I prefer the 250 grain A-Frames.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Overall, with that particular rifle, I prefer the 250 grain A-Frames.
    I do believe that is the bullet that makes the 338 what it is and so effective in the game fields on any continent.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  12. #12

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    This thread has got me thinking about doing something really crazy and buying a 338-378 Accumark and playing around with those 300gr. Sierra for long range target shooting and loading some of those 300gr. Woodleigh for the ultimate .338 Hammer.

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    Thanks all for the input. The box is exactly as Murphy described, Winchester Western super x, white with the big red X. They are indeed 300 gr. power points. After reading your comments it occured to me that I may have purchased this box at a gun show (bought alot of stuff over the years, hard to keep straight), so it is definitely the older stuff. Which brings up the question of shelf life.

    300S&W thanks for the velocities, should be able to calculate energy and bullet drop from that. Odd that velocities are given for 300 gr bullet but no load data.

    I have been looking a cartridge loaded with either the 250 gr. A-frame or Barnes TSX, does anyone know off hand if either of theses bullets are available from a commercial manufacturer?

  14. #14

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    Federal loads the 225 gr. TSX and Remington offers a 250 gr. A-frame in 338WM. Hope that helps.

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    Thanks theONE73, it does help, now I just have to find some.

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    Found this last evening in the circa 1977 Hodgdon #23 reload manual:
    .338 Winchester Magnum(tested in 24"bbl)
    300gr(doesn't give make of bullet)
    starting load/max load
    H4831 64gr 2245fps/H4831 69gr 2450fps
    H205 60gr 2160fps/H205 65gr 2380fps

    Maybe the old Barnes bullet?


    til later

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmeh View Post
    After reading your comments it occured to me that I may have purchased this box at a gun show (bought alot of stuff over the years, hard to keep straight), so it is definitely the older stuff. Which brings up the question of shelf life.
    Quite a while ago I came by a case of 284 Win ammo and a case of 358 Win from the same era- Yellow box and all that interesting reading on the back. I probably have half of each left and still use them both for hunting and range testing. I haven't noticed the smallest sign of deterioration in performance. They're still fine rounds.

    If there was any deterioration in performance, I'd expect it to be from abuse somewhere along the line. Mine came right out of a storeroom and have been stored indoors at stable temps since I got them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmeh View Post
    ........... Anyone know why the 300 gr. has fell out of favor?................

    Yes. We, in this country, like velocity. The makers want to sell their wares and we buy what is the latest and greatest, high speed, low drag, fast and furious. Marketing is designed to find what consumers want and get manufacturing to make it. Or marketing will sell what manufacturing has made by telling us, the consumer, that it is just what we need.

    Certainly a 300 grain 338 caliber bullet would be very effective on any of the larger critters we hunt. Moose and grizzly/brown bears are good examples. The 338 Win Mag is very highly acclaimed in some countries in Africa and is loaded there with 300 grain Woodleighs. This bullet at about 2400-2450 fps will exit from even the largest of animals, from any angle. It is a good load. We have come to think that if we can't get at least 3000 fps from our load we can't hit anything beyond bow range. That is, of course, a rediculous concept. Billy Dixon's shot was at about 1300 fps and 1547 yards. It has been duplicated many times, it wasn't a fluke.

    Know the trajectory of your rifle. Develop the skills to use it. Learn to stalk to within your easy kill range and it doesn't matter how fast the bullet travels. This 338, 300 grain load will certainly get the job done. Problem is you'll have to load your own or find a custom loader to make them for you. The 300 grain SN Woodleigh is the only choice I know of but it is a good one.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    Yes. We, in this country, like velocity. The makers want to sell their wares and we buy what is the latest and greatest, high speed, low drag, fast and furious. Marketing is designed to find what consumers want and get manufacturing to make it. Or marketing will sell what manufacturing has made by telling us, the consumer, that it is just what we need.

    Certainly a 300 grain 338 caliber bullet would be very effective on any of the larger critters we hunt. Moose and grizzly/brown bears are good examples. The 338 Win Mag is very highly acclaimed in some countries in Africa and is loaded there with 300 grain Woodleighs. This bullet at about 2400-2450 fps will exit from even the largest of animals, from any angle. It is a good load. We have come to think that if we can't get at least 3000 fps from our load we can't hit anything beyond bow range. That is, of course, a rediculous concept. Billy Dixon's shot was at about 1300 fps and 1547 yards. It has been duplicated many times, it wasn't a fluke.

    Know the trajectory of your rifle. Develop the skills to use it. Learn to stalk to within your easy kill range and it doesn't matter how fast the bullet travels. This 338, 300 grain load will certainly get the job done. Problem is you'll have to load your own or find a custom loader to make them for you. The 300 grain SN Woodleigh is the only choice I know of but it is a good one.

    Very sound advice as usual Murphy. This thread has got me decided on purchasing a Weatherby Accumark in 338-378 and using those Woodleighs at around 2700-2800fps in it on a Cape Buffalo. I am in the process of contacting a couple of PH's and finding a place where it is legal to make this happen.

  20. #20

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    I wish I could read a thread that has such an impact that it makes me by a new gun and go on a hunt in Africa with it...

    Good luck on buffalo, I have a friend who took one with shots from his 340 weatherby shooting 275 A- Frames, not sure what country though.

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