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Thread: My next project! 375 WSM?

  1. #1

    Default My next project! 375 WSM?

    I've mentioned on this forum about a new FN Winchester model 70 Featherweight in 325WSM that sits in my gun cabinet. I really like this rifle but the gap in the shooting line up that it fills belongs to my 338-06. It will never see any use as is.

    I am lacking a .375(besides my 375 Winchesters). I played with a Howa in 375 Ruger for a while but it was very straight stocked and was a cheek slapper.

    I have been considering sending my 325 WSM to JES Reboring and have him rebore it to .375. Then have the 24 inch barrel cut down to 20 inches and have a good set of sights installed.

    I would suspect better performance than a 375 Scovill and performance that would be on par with or just behind a 375 Taylor.

    I have 300 rounds of WSM brass and several boxes of different .375 bullets to play with so it just seems like the right thing to do!

    Have any of you done one of these yet? Thoughts..pro and con! Thanks EKC

  2. #2

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    Now you have my sincere attention.

    I've been scratching my head about this ever since the WSM line appeared and narrowed it down to a .358 or .375. Either would be fine, but I think I had started leaning toward the 358 for the better BC of the 250's, compared to the 270's in .375. But of course I already have a couple of 375 H&H's I'm real happy with, one with a 20" barrel. If you do it before I do and post glowing results, I could just as easily swing with a 375 anyway.

    Long as you're expanding necks, have you taken a look at 416? I don't know what else is out there with similar case capacity, but that might make an even better short barrel thumper. You've already got the M70 on hand, but my mind was originally wandering toward the BLR in 325 as a starting point. Any of the three calibers would result in a lever that I'd find a lot more useful than any of my others, I think.

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    I can see some merit in a .375 WSM. Less than a .375 H&H and more than a .375 Whelen in a rifle that's a bit handier than either. That is enough reason to pursue it EKC. Though if you're going to the trouble and expense of a semi-wildcat then you might consider a 9.3 on the WSM platform....Lots of good bullets to choose from and at the very least it'd be something to talk about.
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    A couple of years back a friend of mind, John Noveske, came over to hunt spring bear with me - He showed up with a 416 WSM with an 18" barrel on a model 70 action and it was a sweet "little" gun - I can't remember now what it chrono'd but it was very surprising, it was not unpleasant to shoot and quite accurate - I tried to buy it but he wouldn't let it go and I've been slightly haunted by it's image since - I think a 375 WSM is a grand idea and 20 - 22" seems perfect for the pipe

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    I have heard plenty of times that the WSM wasn't worth doing in more than the 325 for the manufacturers and that 358 was about the biggest you should go in a wildcat. Funny thing is that I have never heard anyone give hard data to back up those statements so I am definitely interested to see this come together.

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    Any ideas about case capacity once it's re-sized to .375 with an adequate length neck. Any quick load people out there to come up with velocity forecasts?

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    I have actually loaded........developed the load date for this cartridge. All the WSM wildcats from 6.5 up to the 416. I have dies from Redding and Dave Manson has made the reamers for this series. A smith in Fairbanks has made guns in this chambering and I used his rifles to develop this load data. I believe barrels were 20 or 21 inches. The dies are now non-custom and cheaper than custom of course. I have data and I do like the performance it is a very efficient cartridge. Lots of horse power from a little powder.
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    I too am very interested to track along with this project as I am thinking one of these would take precedence over all others for my "next" - I wonder if there would be enough barrel left in a rebore from a 325 ?

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Murphy View Post
    I have actually loaded........developed the load date for this cartridge. All the WSM wildcats from 6.5 up to the 416.
    What kind of ball park velocities did you get from the 35, 375 and 416 Murphy?

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by BrownBear View Post
    What kind of ball park velocities did you get from the 35, 375 and 416 Murphy?
    I just logged on to ask the very same thing! So Murphy if you don't mind sharing? I'm all ears especially in regards to the 375WSM. I might even bring it down and let ya shoot it iffen ya let me pick your brain some!

    I had a conversation with Jess at JES Rifle Reboring today and it's on! I will be sending my rifle his way next week. Will also see about getting a set of dies ordered.

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    EKC if your doin this on the mod 70 featherweight aren't you a bit concerned it will be a kicker without more weight???
    May be lookin at a porting job if rig is too light weight, so shortening that bbl to 20in and adding sights may be a problem?
    When asked what state I live in I say "The State of Confusion", better known as IL....

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Smokey View Post
    EKC if your doin this on the mod 70 featherweight aren't you a bit concerned it will be a kicker without more weight???
    May be lookin at a porting job if rig is too light weight, so shortening that bbl to 20in and adding sights may be a problem?
    Not really, the stock design on the model 70 fits me well. It's not near as straight as the Howa in 375 Ruger. The truth is the Howa just didn't feel good when shouldered. I have a 458 Win mag with a 20 inch barrel that doesn't weigh much more than the 325 Featherweight and it kicks plenty but it's not punishing!

    I like this gun so well that I can man up for the recoil. The Howa in 375 Ruger didn't have that going for it.

    I never liked ported barrels or muzzle brakes , just to old fashioned I guess(or hard headed)!

  13. #13

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    I'm with elmerkeithclone: also don't care for ported barrels or muzzle brakes. Never cared for barrels shorter than about 21" or 22" either...causes more muzzle blast, and less velocity. I think the 325WSM would be a superb round opened up to 375. Maybe Winchester will do just that.

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    been thinkin' alot about this project and I think for MY needs a 338 WSM would fit better (I think somebody calls it 338 redneck) I don't want to highjack this thread but I would like to hear if anyone knows this wildcat

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    I had a 416 WSM built up by Gary Junk in Fairbanks on a Ruger 77 MKII that started life as a 350 Rem Mag. Used a Mcgowen 20" stainless barrel and had it contoured to match the Hawkeye Alaskan barrel profile which allowed me to order the banded front and Alaskan rear sights from Ruger. Had those installed and it bedded to a Mcmillan classic.

    I have a 700KS Safari and a highly customized M70 Classic Stainless and when it comes time to hunt, that little ruger is so light and handy that you always want to grab it instead of the heavier ones. It will put 5x 340gr Woodleighs over 4895 into 1.25".

    So in the end, go for it, 375 or 416, you will love it.

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    AK375: did you run any of those 416s over screens?

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    I never did chrono the loads but the data on hand showed 2450 fps from a 20" barrel with a 350gr Hawk. Having a 416 Remington and two 375H&Hs, I never intended to try and turn the WSM into either. Whether it is 2450 or 2400 or even 2350, it is a hell of a lot of fire power from a short lightweight rifle.

    Here is the ballistic data from the same source for the 375 WSM:

    270 gr. Hornady 2631 fps SD of 11
    260 gr. Nosler 2673 fps SD of 08
    250 gr. Kodiak 2702 fps SD of 05
    235 gr. Speer 2840 fps SD of 17

  18. #18

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    I like those number AK375! Thanks for sharing!

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    I did the load development for Gary in Fairbanks on the 338, 375 and 416. Not sure if he had a 358 reamer then. I own the 20" 338 that I used.
    I have data for all WSM wildys but can't get to my notes for a while. I'll post my data for all interested in a few days.
    I also have a .411 diameter WSM and all from 6.5 up to the 416 are just 300WSM necked. Not the 7mm case it is different. (shoulder forward)
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



  20. #20
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    Yes, this my Data. They are all good performers in short barrels. Did you load any if these?

    Quote Originally Posted by AK375 View Post
    Here is the ballistic data from the same source for the 375 WSM:

    270 gr. Hornady 2631 fps SD of 11
    260 gr. Nosler 2673 fps SD of 08
    250 gr. Kodiak 2702 fps SD of 05
    235 gr. Speer 2840 fps SD of 17
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



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