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Thread: Best rifle in .325 WSM

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    Member Hunt'N'Photos's Avatar
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    Default Best rifle in .325 WSM

    This is actually several questions. How many of you are using the .325 WSM up here in AK and what rifle did you decide on and why. I will be using this rifle for moose, bear, caribou, sheep, maybe goats and possibly buffalo if I get lucky. I have read several threads on various calibers being favorites, but all the reading I have done and the experience I have with other WSM rounds leads me to believe that this would be one of the better all around cartridges up here.
    Last edited by Hunt'N'Photos; 10-21-2006 at 09:10.

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    I bet it depends a lot on how you plan to use it. I don't really need another long range/high power bolt action, but Browning's plans to bring out the 325 in its stainless BLR has reallyl caught my attention. I might clip the barrel, but mounted with a receiver sight, the BLR might quickly become my favorite "carry" gun in bear country. Not everyone's (or maybe anyone's) cup of tea, but it sure looks like a promising setup for my needs.

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    Default Savage Model 14 "Limited" Classic

    I was able to locate a Savage in the "classic" model 14 last week. I topped it off with a leupold VX-III, 2.5 x 8 x 36. I have not yet been to the range to shoot and see what it produces for accuracy. I have a couple of boxes of the super-x ammo in the 220 gr. power point for the test. I don't hand load so the ammo is pretty spendy and recommend that you check your area for the ammo when considering this as your rifle or if you do hand load congratulations. The Savage M 14 comes pretty much tricked out with a free floated barrel, accu-trigger, etc...

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    The biggest downfall of the 325WSM is the fact that if you dont reload you basically have only 3 ammo choices and for some they cant even find all 3 available locally. I owned one a Winchester M70 Ultimate Shadow in 325 WSM and sold it because I dont like the Winchester power points or the Winchester ballistic silvertips and it did not shoot the Winchester Accubonds well. Theres lots of good 8mm bullets out there for reloaders but not much ammo on the shelf for factory ammo shooters. Federal has now like twice delayed production of any 325WSM ammo so its kind of hurting the growth of the caliber. If I was looking for one though the Kimber Montana would be a great choice in that caliber IMO.

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    The Kimber works good for me. Murphy has a post in the shooters forum about the Kimber and accuracy. He shot hundreds of loads through one. Factory ammo and reloads both I think.
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

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    Cant find that thread from Murphy on the Kimbers Snyd, is it in the archives of the old forum?

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    I can't find it either. I may have been thinking aobut another forum. ianm over at kifaru forums has a lot of experience with the 325. Here's a post of his: and the link http://forums.kifaru.net/ubb/ultimat...c;f=5;t=000317

    Not sure what real world experience is but I have shot over 1,600 rounds though several .325 WSM rifles. Matter of fact I have a fairly comprehensive article in this issue of the NRA Shooting Illustrated magazine on the factory ballistics of the .325 ammo (180, 200 and 220 gr) out to 500 yards. I have shot it a lot out to 700 yards and spent a few days shooting drops out all the way out to 1100 yards to compare the factory 200 Accubond and 200 Matchking reloads with 180's in the .300 Win and WSM. Not quite as flat way out there but close - with 20 more grains.

    To date I have killed nine deer, two bear and a caribou (caribou was on the first hunt the .325 was taken on by Winchester - one of those "writer hunts" mentioned.). No animals heavier than 300-400 pounds. All died very quickly - only animal that took two hits was the caribou and he was dead on hit feet when the second bullet dumped him.

    I made the statement that I would not sell a good shooting .300 Win mag or WSM or a good shooting .338 Win to buy a .325 WSM. If I was in your situation I would definitely give it serious consideration. One factor is recoil - in similar weight rifles (and we must remember that stock design has much to do with felt recoil, and the pad) the .325 WSM kicks less than the .338 WIn. So it should, no magic there since it uses less powder in most loads. I have two .325's, a factory Ultimate Shadow and a GA Precision custom long range rig that probably weighs over 12 pounds with the NXS on it. I have also shot several other M-70 models, wood stocks etc. and none of the rifles was difficult to control or abusive. Most shot about 1.5 moa, some better, some slightly over.

    The .325 WSM is an accurate cartridge and easier to reload for than the traditional magnumsince there is no belt. In addition there is a remarkable number of bullets available for reloading, and more coming I understand. I have 17 dfferent bullets (Brands and weights) here right now for a reloading review. No 250's and might never be since the longer bullets intrude into the case too much.

    Although I have not shot elk or moose with the .325 WSM I know several guys that have and they are completely happy with the performance. A 200 Accubond at about 2900 is a formidable killer, simple as that.

    My kills have ranged from 30 yards to 540 yards to date. I have shot about 750 Sierra 200 gr. Matchkings through the rifles at longer ranges, they are slightly flatter shooting than the 200 Accubonds. My rifles happen to like a hefty charge of H-4931 SC and Win. mag primers. If I can hold up my end of the deal my GA rifle will shoot the handloads into one-hole groups for three or five shots at 100 yards. Naturally the factory rifle does not do that, but has shot inside one inch at 100 yards with the ammo it prefers.

    Federal is announcing three .325 WSM loads shortly, that will make for some nice choices for factory ammo.

    I own some wonderful .338's and .300 Win and WSM rifles, but have not shot them much since I got the .325's. I would not use it for brown bear but would definitely use it for elk or moose and other members of the deer family out to very long distance. My rifles each have a favorite as far as factory ammo goes - that is how rifles are. A while back a guy asked if he could shoot a .325 WSM so I let him fire three shots of WIn. factory 220 Power Points. That group went right around 0.250" believe it or not. Best group I have ever seen shot with the .325 WSM - and shot with the cheapest ammo. Sometimes bullets fly into groups instead of out...
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

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    Quote Originally Posted by Snyd View Post
    Federal is announcing three .325 WSM loads shortly, that will make for some nice choices for factory ammo.
    Very informative post there Snyd

    I have been in the market for a .325 but had recently decided to go with a 338 due to the availability of .325 ammo. Do you know when the Federal ammo is going to be on the shelf? I might just go back to my original .325 plan. The Browning stainless BLR sounds interesting too..

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    Default Helpful!

    Thanks for all the information from everyone. I went looking around today for a .325 but came up with nuthin! I found a Kimber montana online, does anyone know of someone in the Anchorage area with an FFL that could recieve a gun for me if I have one shipped? I handload, so the ammo is not a concern and I have noticed alot of load information on the net about this cartridge and as Snyd said there are tons of bullets available for it. I think this is definitely going to be my rifle of choice. My son is going to inherit my old .270 it looks like and I just need to sell his rem 700 youth to help offset the cost!

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    Frontier Outfitters in Fairbanks has a Kimber Montana in 325WSM, anyway they had one on Wednesday I am assuming its still there.

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    Hey HNP, if you go to gunbroker.com they have a whole list of ffl holders who will do transfers for you.

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    I have no idea. I just pasted that post from Kifaru forums.

    Quote Originally Posted by Crumm View Post
    Very informative post there Snyd

    I have been in the market for a .325 but had recently decided to go with a 338 due to the availability of .325 ammo. Do you know when the Federal ammo is going to be on the shelf? I might just go back to my original .325 plan. The Browning stainless BLR sounds interesting too..
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlaskaCub View Post
    Frontier Outfitters in Fairbanks has a Kimber Montana in 325WSM, anyway they had one on Wednesday I am assuming its still there.
    That's where I got mine. $1149 if I remember right.
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

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    It was $12 hundred and something I couldn't see real closely. They had the 325WSM and a 300WSM, I ended up getting mine for $1059 at SW. The 300WSM at Frontiers was $1259 so it was smart for me to go to SW before I said I'll take it.The 325 WSM might have been the same price as the 300WSM.

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    I went to SW yesterday but they didnt have any in stock right now. They said they usually carry the Browning and Kimber in the .325 but there was none in at the moment. I dont need it this minute so I am going to look around for a little while. I found a kimber online for $895 but not sure if the FFL fee and shipping would make that a good deal or not. Also found out about the gun show in Palmer this weekend so we are going to head out there today and look around a bit.

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    Sounds like the price went up a hundred bucks. Hey AlaskaCub I saw in an old thread where you had a gun magna ported. Did you have it done locally? What did you think of it and how much did it cost you? Are the slots big enough where crud could get in there while hunting? questions questions....
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and donít have one, youíll probably never need one again

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    Snyd, I had a Tikka T3 Lite in 300WM done by Gary Junk at Arctic Gun Works in Fairbanks. It definately tamed the recoil but man that thing is so loud that I dont think I would shoot it even in the field without hearing protection. Last week I was up at Cushman shooting my Ruger 338WM and the T3 300WM. You can actually feel percussion waves coming backwards at you on the bench when shooting it that you could not feel when shooting the 338. He did a great job and if I recall correctly it was $150. I will say that I wont own a rifle with a magnaport job again that was my second and its just too much noise for my taste. But it does what it is supposed to, reduces muzzle jump and tames recoil a significant amount. Does that 325WSM hit that hard, or is it for another rifle?

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlaskaCub View Post
    Snyd, I had a Tikka T3 Lite in 300WM done by Gary Junk at Arctic Gun Works in Fairbanks. It definately tamed the recoil but man that thing is so loud that I dont think I would shoot it even in the field without hearing protection. Last week I was up at Cushman shooting my Ruger 338WM and the T3 300WM. You can actually feel percussion waves coming backwards at you on the bench when shooting it that you could not feel when shooting the 338. He did a great job and if I recall correctly it was $150. I will say that I wont own a rifle with a magnaport job again that was my second and its just too much noise for my taste. But it does what it is supposed to, reduces muzzle jump and tames recoil a significant amount. Does that 325WSM hit that hard, or is it for another rifle?


    If the porting wasn't done by Magna-Port back in Michigan, it's not Magna-Ported, just ported.

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    My apologies on the description of said work.Here his link Snyd.

    http://arcticgunworks.com/main_pages/shop.htm

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    Default 325 Montana..

    There is one Kimber Montana at Alaska Guns & Ammo on sixth avenue in Fairbanks. Steve Smith's place, and it is less than $1100, I believe. He has a 300 and a 325. I think the 325 is the best of the WSM's and the Kimber is the best of the bunch.
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