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Thread: Short Mags

  1. #1
    Member outaMT's Avatar
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    Default Short Mags

    I was reading one of the other threads (one of the 300 vs 338) and one of the comments sparked my interest: What is the consensus out there regarding the Short Mags? Are they here today and gone tomorrow-passing fad, or have they secured their place in North American hunting?


    I like the 300 and 270 WSMs for a few reasons (the only two Iíve been around) but Iím not really sold either way regarding their long term demand, or contiuned popularity with hunters. What do you guy's think?

  2. #2

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    This has been hashed over many times on the forum. If you do a search you will find many and I mean many opinions and predictions. In fact you might get tired of reading all that has been expounded on this forum concerning the short magnums and their longevity. Some might last but if they don't the younger hunter of today who has one will resurrect them if they fade away when he gets old for nostalgia sake.
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  3. #3

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    I'm likely to build one rather than buy an existing model rifle. I don't see any reason to own one in a full sized rifle, but getting "magnum" ballistics in something smaller and lighter appeals. Of course, choice in factory rifles is really limited for me (read: none) because I'm a lefty. But if I could turn out ballistics close to 300 Winnie or 7mm rem in a rifle without a 24 inch barrel and 9-10 pounds of carry weight, what's not to like?

    As for longevity, that's the last issue on my plate with them. I reload rounds from the 1800's that haven't even been factory loaded in the last 30 or 40 years such as the 38-56 and 50-140. If a round has merit I'll reload it, and for me the merit of the shorties exists only in small rifles.

  4. #4
    Member outaMT's Avatar
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    Beartooth,

    Thanks. I found a few threads, mostly about ballistics, and shorter action seems to be commonly agreed upon from what Iíve found so ....but lots of pages and old posts for me to search yet.

    I guess what I was getting at was the Short Mag concept overall; what niche we're they intended to fill, and why....? More research on my part.


    Thanks again,

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by outaMT View Post
    Beartooth,

    Thanks. I found a few threads, mostly about ballistics, and shorter action seems to be commonly agreed upon from what Iíve found so ....but lots of pages and old posts for me to search yet.

    I guess what I was getting at was the Short Mag concept overall; what niche we're they intended to fill, and why....? More research on my part.


    Thanks again,
    I think the original "short magnum" was/is the best imo....the .350 Remington Magnum.

    Big power in a short handy rifle, mine is Ruger MK. II All-Weather that weighs about 7.5lbs. with the 2-7x scope it wears.

    You better be a reloader though, I expect that might be the case with a lot of the WSM in a few years as well though.

  6. #6

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    I like the shorter cartridges like the 350Rem Mag and the 358Win and have owned a couple of 300WSM but found no real advantage for my personal hunting situations for use of the 300WSM or other short mags accept the 350Rem and 358Win. Now that does not mean they are not good or fun to use or useful, they are. I just don't see how they really fill a need that was not already taken care of, that's all I am saying.

    I love all the different cartridges that Americans have come up with and many others that we did not come up with. It is wonderful to have opportunity to try so many different kinds of cartridges that have some very specific uses. When I am able to get a lot of use out of my 358Win and 30-06 for my hunting adventures, I don't find a need for the short mags but that certainly is a preference not because the short mags are not useful.
    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    Yep, this one has been around a few times but I'll pitch in my two cents...

    I bought a rifle in .300 WSM not because I'm a huge fan of the cartridge but because the rifle suits me to a T and I thought it would make a great sheep rifle.

    After two years of shooting and hunting with it I'm liking the WSM round better all the time. My rifle weighs 7.4lbs loaded, scoped and slung; shoots 3 180gr Partitions or ABs at 2950fps into 3/4" with boring regularity. Not sure there's something to dislike in a hunting rifle.

    I found a factory load with Accubonds the rifle really likes and I bought enough to hunt for 3 three lifetimes so I don't really care if it fades to oblivion in a decade. That said- the .300WSM has been out for a decade, I regularly see all kinds of ammo for it available and nearly everyone is chambering a rifle to it.

    Is it vastly superior to an '06? - not really, but I wouldn't be scared of it if you wanted one. Ammo is kinda high but what ammo isn't these days?

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    One other thing to consider when predicting the demise of cartridges... the economics of ammunition manufacturing have changed a lot in the last few years.

    It is no longer necessary for a manufacturer to sell a gazillion rounds to be profitable. You can still obtain factory loads for cartridges that have been doornail dead for decades. In fact some of these surprise us and come back from the dead to be somewhat popular again (ie.405Win and 450-400 NE!). Witness the ressurection of some of the old time double rifle cartridges... they are likely more available now than they've ever been. You can finally buy 8mm RMag loads that are what they should have been to start with and that ones been dead since at least the early eighties. I saw a thread on here recently about the .303 Savage. You can readily buy cartridges that haven't been chambered in a century and weren't really that popular then either.

    So I just don't fret about buying cartridges in the future- they may not be on the shelf at Kmart and they may cost more than '06 ammo but in a pure hunting rifle I'm not sure that's something to be too concerned about. If I were kinda concerned I'd buy up some rounds and components and hunt away happily with it. But when I can find .303 Savage, 30-40Krag, 6mm Remington, 32 Win Special and 38-40 on the shelf in Fairbanks I think the .300WSM will be available for a long time to come.

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    For the past few years I have beeing hunting caribou with my son's 300WSM. Rifle is a good shooter and I do bring home the meat. A few years ago I bought 10 boxes of factory ammo off the shelf at Wal-mart for $18.00/box. Don't see that price too often nowadays at any store. The rifle I use is a Winchester 70 classic SS, also have both the 7mm and 270 wsm rifles, same configuration. Recently bought both a 300RSAUM and a 7mmRSAUM, both in Remington Mdl Seven Stainless. A few years back I had a couple of 325 WSMs built, one for my son and another for my soninlaw. As beartooth said these short mags do appeal to the younger generation of hunters. Haven't heard of any Ruger compact mags showing up out here in the villages yet, who know maybe in a few years they will start surfacing as well. Sure would like to add a 358 Win to my lineup of short cartridges, it may not say magnum but I am sure it too can get the job done for the animals I hunt for food.

  10. #10

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    Nukalpia, the 358Win is just plain awesome and a whole lot of fun, I mean fun to load for, shoot and especially to hunt with.

    Looks great and handles great - Ruger Hawkeye 358Win 22" barrel


    On a black bear hunt and taking a break with my 358Win


    225gr Accubond moving at 2556fps using TAC, 215Fed primers, and Win brass


    Shot it a 100-105yds and DRT
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    THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

  11. #11
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    I bought one of Winnie's "Ultimate Stealth" rifles in 223 WSSM for my wife. This is a pretty rare rifle, it is a Mod 70 SSM receiver and the entire rifle, even the springs, are stainless. I have only seen five in existence, and I bought one of the five.

    Most people who post on the WSM's like them. So why not go and get what you like?

    I have contacted a benchrest 'smith who will completely rebuild my wife's rifle, even though it is a CRF Winnie, which is not a receiver built for pure accuracy, I believe he can make it so when fired, if the bullet doesn't hit where the crosshairs were, it will be entirely our fault, not the firearms.

    You shouldn't base a purchase on what other people say, unless it is an obvious dog, just get what you want and play with it for awhile. I bought this one when people were complaining about the SSM being barrel-burners, and the cartridges not living up to accuracy potential of what buiyers wanted. There are ways around that. And am willing to spend the coin to find out what I can do.

    The best thing to do would be buy a rifle in the cartridge you want, then have a 'smith cut a new chamber with a really good reamer, re-crown, and then bed it up. Cheapest accuracy tricks for the buck. Then see how well it shoots. If you find it makes you smile, you won't be out long coin, and you then may consider a Hart, Lilja or Kreiger barrel and some receiver work to get the last nth degree.
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    beartooth, Yep the 358 winchester sure looks like a good cartridge, keep the ranges reasonable and I am sure that it would be very effective on game like caribou and black bear up here. Nitroman, those accurizing tricks you mentioned sound like good basic steps if a hunter needs to fine tune his rifle a bit. Read somewhere on this forum before of hunters even spray foaming the inside forearms of their factory stocks sanding them down, then coating the exposed foam with a sealant, guess it was to help firm the stock up a bit. Seems that would be a good accurizing trick too.

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    I went around this mountain a few years back. I agree with hodgman in the sense that I didn't buy a short mag just for the cartridge, but for the overall rifle/package. 325wsm in a rifle that weighs 7lbs with scope and sling. Fit me well, and for me seems to be the perfect hunting rifle from sheep on up. I think it's each to his own, I reload for it, lots of good bullets to choose from so am not worried about ammo or what others think about the cartridge in the future.

  14. #14

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    I have never been a real big Savage fan nor a short mag fan but a few months ago I was in Scheel's wandering around and shouldering a few rifles. One caught my eye and it was both a Savage and a short mag. It was the new all camoed up model 10 Whitetail Hunter(same as their Predator) in 325 WSM. The gun fit me to the "T". It was light and felt perfect however I didn't buy it. They were asking $620 and the fact that I had already spent my gun funds for the month coupled with the fact that mother was eyeballing me caused me to sit it back in the rack and walk. However the other night I was wandering on Gunbroker and found that Ray Tanner was selling this very gun new in the box for $419(He's got some left at that price). It should be here this week.

    I sold my Ruger 350 mag yesterday to cover the cost of the 325. Momma made me! The dog house is little and ole Ruger farts a lot!

    I think I just made Beartooth cringe.....sold a Ruger to buy a Savage? It'll be OK.....I think!

  15. #15

    Default 325 short mag vs 8mm/06AI

    well the same and i perfier the 8mm/06AI because I can use 30/06 brass and I have one more round in the mag.. there is no possible reason for any of the short mags... it is like trading a 350 chevy for a V_6 ... the best and always will be,, the best is the 350 rimington and the 6.5 remington and of course the 284 winchester... they are the real shorts and the new is just a sales gimmic.. I am sorry about the truth.. did you know that all three of the above is on the same lenght case ha ha it is true

  16. #16

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    Well trixie, I'm not sure how old you are but I was around when the 6.5 and 350 mags came out and we all thought they were just sales gimmicks way back then. All three of the cartridges you mentioned ceased production not long after they were introduced. The 350 has made a slight come back thanks to Ruger and then Remington and it will likely hang around for a while. The other two are a wash from a commercial stand point.

    The new short mags caught on like wildfire and they have a big cult following already where as the 6.5, and 350 mags were greeted with a yawn! The 284 was one of the best rounds ever developed but just never caught on.

    I think all the preintroductory hype that the new short mags got from all of the gun rags and the internet fueled the rage. The old shorties didn't get that hype.

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    regardless of the truth behind the short mag trend, I am still gonna hang on too and hunt with my short mags for a while, as long as I have ammo to shoot. So far I am satisfied with the 300wsm it is a good shooter and puts meat in my freezer. Still have a bunch of ammo to shoot too, and a bunch more on the way for my other rifles, so I guess for now I am good to go. 8mm-06AI sounds interesting though, always wondered why the 8mm-06 didnt catch on, seems like it woulda been a good factory cartridge.

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    To me the Short Mags are just a gimmick to sell a new caliber and a new rifle to someone who thinks the standards cant get it done,,,and good luck finding and paying for that gimmick ammo.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danthedewman1 View Post
    To me the Short Mags are just a gimmick to sell a new caliber and a new rifle to someone who thinks the standards cant get it done,,,and good luck finding and paying for that gimmick ammo.
    When we had the Obama freak out last year the only ammo left on the shelf was 325wsm. I guess there's one advantage to having a "gimmick" caliber

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    When getting ready to build a ligh tweight rifle for sheep and deer I weighed a Win 70 3006 and 300 WSM from the same company. The 300 action was 5 ounces lighter which made my choice pretty easy.

    For me, the 270 WSM AND 300 WSM's have replaced the 270 Win and the 300 Win Mag.
    Tennessee

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