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Thread: Need help buying a .338

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    Default Need help buying a .338

    I am wanting to purchase a .338 but am unsure of which make or model to go with. Can anyone give me some advice.

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    How much do you want to spend? The Ruger M77 mkII in 338 is a staple of the AK hunting scene. But really most all of the major brands put out a quality 338 WM, it is more about how it feels to you. Best bet is to go to the gun shop and shoulder a bunch of rifles. Pick the ones that feel best to you then come back back to get input on them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by urbanredneck View Post
    I am wanting to purchase a .338 but am unsure of which make or model to go with. Can anyone give me some advice.
    Your question is a little barren. Are you interested in a 338 Federal, 338/06, 338 WM, 340 Weatherby, 338 RUM, etc.? That will narrow the field a bit. For what purpose do you want such a rifle? Long range shooting, bears in the alders, moose in the willows, varmints and such or perhaps a little bit of all that? Approximately how much do you want to spend? I suspect that you can find rifles in the $300 range and I know you can spend 50X that with little effort. Give us some more info and I'm confident suggestions will begin to flow.
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    It also depends on how you're going to use it. If it will be a "carry" gun in addition to a general hunting gun, a bolt and probably a little shorter barrel may be in order. I've already got a 375 H&H that meets those criteria, so my 338 is mostly a long-range big game gun. It's a Ruber #1, 26" Magnaported barrel, and really specialized for my intended use. Heck, there's even the Browning Semi-Auto to consider.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LuJon View Post
    How much do you want to spend? The Ruger M77 mkII in 338 is a staple of the AK hunting scene. But really most all of the major brands put out a quality 338 WM, it is more about how it feels to you. Best bet is to go to the gun shop and shoulder a bunch of rifles. Pick the ones that feel best to you then come back back to get input on them.
    +1. This is very good advice. In my opinion, I would not hesitate to buy a 338 from any of the major manufacturers as they all will make a good rifle. Every one will have their favorite, or perhaps one that just feels better to them. For what it is worth, my Ruger 338 has been money well spent, accurate, tough, reliable. You should go "kick some tires" at a couple of gun shops!

  6. #6

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    Winchester M70

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    Dakota 76 if you can afford it or "controlled round feed" Win. Mod 70 with the "old style" trigger.

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    I suggest a Weatherby Vanguard Synthetic.

    IMO, it beats any other choice, hands down. Of course, you don't hafta get the Synthetic Model. There are other choices.

    http://www.weatherby.com/product/rif...uard/synthetic.

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    My thoughts are that you should first find a friend with a rifle in the caliber your interested in and shoot it. OR find a range that rents rifles and try out the one you are interested in. Don't just shoot it off a bench either try offhand and other positions.
    Make sure the rifle fits your frame. Take your hunting jacket with you and see if the LOP is too long or short. Can you shoulder the rifle and work the action without loosing your target? Consider the terrain and weather conditions you intend to subject both yourself and your rifle to. Pick up a rifle you already own and carry it for 4-5 miles on foot through the brush/mountains, if that's the way you hunt; at the end of your walk consider the rifles assets. Is it too heavy, too long,too short, does it pack well or try to break your shoulder. Remember magnum rifles tend to have barrels 2-4 inches longer than standard calibers, to acheive higher velocities.
    Will you be able to tolerate the higher recoil of a larger caliber rifle if not get a different caliber.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1Cor15:19 View Post
    Your question is a little barren. Are you interested in a 338 Federal, 338/06, 338 WM, 340 Weatherby, 338 RUM, etc.? That will narrow the field a bit. For what purpose do you want such a rifle? Long range shooting, bears in the alders, moose in the willows, varmints and such or perhaps a little bit of all that? Approximately how much do you want to spend? I suspect that you can find rifles in the $300 range and I know you can spend 50X that with little effort. Give us some more info and I'm confident suggestions will begin to flow.
    There's only one REAL .338 :-D

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    I have a circa early 80's LH Remington 700 BDL in 338 Mag. They made one run of them around 83'-85', and mine is only the second I ever saw. I kicked myself for not buying the first off the used rack of the Scheels in Bismarck ND in 99', if I recall correctly. I got mine NIB from an estate auction in 07'. I bedded it in a LH Rem Mag laminated take-off I picked up off ebay, and put on a brake. It is nasty accurate, prints Accubond 225s MOA or better off the bench. With the brake on it has about the same recoil as a 270 shooting 130 grain loads. Have a set of tritium dangerous game express sights for it that I'll get around to putting on some time. I've killed one critter with it, a huge bodied 6 point elk, one shot at 240 yards, collapsed him like a demolished building. I would be completely comfortable with it as my primary AK rifle.

    Based on my experienced, I highly recommend the 700 in 338 Mag....

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    I own both a semi-auto, (Browning BAR) and single shot, (Ruger #1) in 338 and like them both. Obviously they are used for different reasons, but I carry the BAR the most often.

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    I would buy whichever rifle has the features you like most. If it doesn't shoot to your liking you can always have it accurized, rebarreled or just plain sell it and buy another. Most of the big manufacturers turn out a reasonable product.

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    I have a Weatherby Mark V in .340 WBY. It's fairly close to a .338 RUM. It has a synthetic stock, a muzzle break, and it shoots 1/2 MOA with my handloads. I have no complaints whatsoever with this rifle. The reason for this is because I hiked around in areas similar to what I would be hunting and identified the factors that would need to be considered when choosing a rifle for AK big game. I went through another Mark V before this one because it had a wood stock, and the cheek rest didn't fit me. I sold it and used the money to buy the rifle I have now. I guess my point is that you have a lot to consider, and if you don't get it right the first time, no worries. The only shopping I like to do is for guns, and hunting stuff. I know a lot of guys who feel the same way.

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    Just wondering why 338? when I came to alaska 30 some years ago every one said I had to HAVE a 338 (which I still have) but my go to gun is my 300wm. I agree with Brav01, find someone or a couple of people who has one and shoot it in different positions, you may not like the recoil. IMHO shot placment is way more important than a poorly palced shot with a Magnum cal. also the last time I checked 338 ammo was almost twice the price of 300 wm ammo. If you get one have fun sounds like a good reason to get a new rifle.

  16. #16

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    I have 12 338 win mags.Most all of them are Rugers except one winchester.The Stainless Laminated stocked Ruger is my favorite.Its the most accurate and kicks like a 270 win.I have shot 3/4" groups with it at 200 yards.It is awesome on moose,caribou,sheep or bears.I like it for all around hunting in Alaska.I do use my 338-378 Weatherby on the open tundra more than the 338 win mag.The 338 win mag is perfict for moose up to 300 yards and caribou up to 400 yards.I think with the right bullet and gun it is the perfict gun for all around Alaska hunting .

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    as stated quite a few times below, "any good quality" factory rifle would be "good" but AS LONG AS WE ARE NOT TALKING "CUSTOM" RIFLES HERE, go stainless for sure, I would go with the current manufacture model 70 even though I think it was a mistake to abandon the original style trigger and you "could" retrofit one on a new Winchester 70, OR a Kimber Montana (nice rifles), or a Ruger, OR a Sako (stay away from the Tikka in .338 win mag, IMO) Vanguard would be OK, I personally won't "hunt" a Remington 700, there are more and you can always find a "semi-custom" mauser 98 ... .338 Win Mag shooting 225 Nosler Accubonds out of Norma brass and don't look back ...

  18. #18

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    Have had problems with my post-64 Winchester M70. Its an OK rifle now, but needed the help of a gunsmith. I don't like the safety, it seems prone to getting bumped and changing position. I would opt for a Ruger second time around. With the good bullets available these days, I'd probably use .30-06 and save myself the pounding unless wanting to hunt big bears. This would also allow for a lot of off-hand practice using surplus ammo.

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    Default Ruger M77 Hawkeye .338 RCM

    Santa just brought me one of these 7 weeks ago. Hornady and Ruger worked together to create this new round about 2 years ago. Check out the ballistics; it flies flatter & faster & with less powder than other .338s.

    The rounds are physically very short, the action is short, and it shoots more accurately with an only 20" barrel than other .338s. Weighs 6.75 #

    I put a wide aperture 42mm scope on it (to better gather light in dusky times), flip up scope covers, neoprene sling, and a butt mounted synthetic zipper-bag that has elastic on the outside to hold 5 rounds at the ready.

    It comes with such beautiful iron sights, I was tempted to not scope it at all. It also comes with scope rings.

    Mine is synthetic stock, stainless barrel. From the printing on the box, I can see that Santa got it at Great Northern Guns in Anchorage.

    Nice butt pad built into stock. Feels great to hold. Haven't shot it yet.

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