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300 wsm

Discussion in 'Rifle Discussion' started by pslyke, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. pslyke

    pslyke Portland Active Member

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    Looking for some recommendations for a new hunting rifle and I am pretty set on 300 wsm. I am looking to spend about a grand and don't want something heavy like a sendero but don't want a featherweight beating me up either.

    A slightly tactical look would be nice but I also like classic looks too...any thoughts? I saw a sako tecomate that caught my eye...
     
  2. billt

    billt Glendale, Arizona Active Member

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    If I may ask, what is attracting you to the short fat .300? The reason I ask is because these cartridges were sold on the concept of a short powder column being more accurate than a long one. That has not necessarily panned out in the real world. It has resulted in shorter barrel life, however.

    I currently own and shoot 3, .300 Winchester Magnum rifles, and have had extremely good luck with all of them. The .300 Win. Mag. has a lot going for it. Brass is avaliable everywhere, and quite inexpensively. There has been reams of handloading data written for it since it's introduction in 1963. And it is very accurate.

    A lot of the short fat cartridges have already died out. The Remington SAUM's, (Short Action Ultra Mags), are all but dead, while their conventional long cased Ultra Mags are a smashing success. I've seen a lot of high grade Model 70's heavily discounted because all of them were chambered in hard to move short fat cartridges.

    Some people have this "thing" about a belted cartridge which I simply do not understand. A belted case was desirable because of the short headspace it provides. Now all of a sudden it's some type of detriment? I've been shooting the .300 Winchester Magnum since 1972, and it has never let me down. It is avaliable in a limitless line of rifles, by most every manufacturer in the industry. Even Browning chambers their BAR in it.

    I'm not trying to steer you away from what you want, it's just that the more I examine these short fat cartridges, the less of an advantage they seem to provide in real world shooting situations. And you would hate to sink a lot of money into a cartridge that might not survive in the marketplace as well as a well proven performer has like the .300 Winchester Magnum has for the last 48 years. These are my .300 Win. Mags. Bill T.

    Remington700BDL300WinMag.jpg

    Remington 700 BDL (1972 vintage with blued Stainless Steel Barrel)

    Kimber84002.jpg

    Kimber8400LAPoliceTactical.jpg

    Kimber 8400 Police Tactical

    Savage110FCP-K.jpg

    LeupoldMarkIVTacticalRings008.jpg

    Savage 110 FCP/K with Accustock and Accutrigger.
     
  3. pslyke

    pslyke Portland Active Member

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    My limited experience with the cartridge has shown me I can get a smaller handier action and an overall lighter weight rifle without being punished with too much recoil. My understanding is that the velocities are very similar to the regular mag rounds
     
  4. pslyke

    pslyke Portland Active Member

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    Nice looking guns, by the way! Any of them lighter weight? the sako tecomate is 6.6 lbs and I'm wondering if the recoil would be too much with such a light rifle..
     
  5. yotehunter

    yotehunter north west Active Member

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    bang for buck that's light get one in a Tikka... But if it were me I too would get 300 win mag. If you travel somewhere and run out or forget ammo it is easier to find and way less expensive.
     
  6. 9mmMike

    9mmMike Gladstone, OR Member

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    I love my Savage in 300WSM . Shoots fantastic groups for me with a 4-16 4200 Scope on it. I shoot 180 grains for everything, but factory loads in 150 and 165 are available. If you intend on reloading a 200 grain or bigger round, the WSM is not for you as you really have to compress the powder to fit a 200 grain bullet. Great round, but as said above, I don't know that it offers anything, other than the short action, that the 300WinMag can't offer. All 300 Magnum Factory ammo is expensive, and the WSM is only a buck or two more than the standard Magnum for high end ammo. Wish you the best whatever round, gun you choose...
     
  7. billt

    billt Glendale, Arizona Active Member

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    A 6.6 pound .300 Magnum is going to be a bruiser, regardless if it's of the short fat variety, or a full length Magnum. There is just no way around it. This will make working up loads, or testing factory ones with the rifle on the bench a painful experience. No rifle is worth it if it cannot be shot properly in just a few rounds. Accuracy means nothing if a shooter starts flinching. Even with a lightweight hunting scope and mounts the gun will still be under or at 8 pounds.

    My Remington 700 BDL is as light as I would dare go with a .300 Magnum. And even with it, after 20 rounds on the bench, I have to really concentrate as not to flinch. These guns wear you out faster than one might think. No one wants to carry a heavy rifle in the field, so weight does have it's limits in a hunting rifle. With that said you want enough of it to make the rifle as shootable and stable of a platform as possible.

    I own and shoot several bolt guns in .308 and personally I've never understood any of this much publicized handiness a short bolt action supposedly provides. What makes a much bigger difference is how well the action itself operates. A nice smooth, close fitting bolt like that in a Browning or Weatherby, will operate in a long action far better than a sloppy one in a short action rifle. You are talking about an inch or so of travel. That's it.

    As far as recoil there isn't that much difference between the two with equal weight bullets at similar velocities. If a given weight bullet is going to accelerate to a given velocity in a given barrel length, the recoil will be very similar regardless of the type of cartridge that launches it. Sir Issac Newton all but guarantees that.

    All in all the .300 WSM is not a bad cartridge in the least. And if no other cartridges existed in it's class, it would be the cats meow. But with older, more well proven cartridges around like the .300 Winchester and Weatherby Magnums, not to mention the newer .300 Remington Ultra Magnum, it has a much more difficult time proving the need for it's very existence.

    With all of that said, if your choice is still the .300 WSM I would select it in a heavier platform, and just to be safe, stock up on a large amount of brass, and or ammunition, just in case it becomes another victim of failure in the marketplace like many of the other short fat cartridges have in the past few years. The .300 WSM is a bit better established, but nothing could be worse than investing hard earned cash in a rifle / scope combination, only to have to hunt for ammo with more diligence than the game you're after. Bill T.
     
    mjbskwim and (deleted member) like this.
  8. billt

    billt Glendale, Arizona Active Member

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    This is a point I failed to make in my initial post that is very important. The .300 long action Magnums, (Winchester, Weatherby, and Remington Ultra), really come into their own in the range department when shooting the heavier weight bullets. Let's face it, from a hunting perspective the only reason to go with a .30 caliber Magnum in the first place is the range potential they have over a standard cartridge of the same caliber, say .30-06 or .308. Heavier bullets are far better performers at long range, than lighter ones. 1,000 yard rifle shooters have proven this at most every match they compete in. Sectional density becomes king in long range competition, as well as long range hunting scenarios.

    A heavy weight bullet will retain it's velocity over long range far better than a lighter one will. In this regard I've never shot anything in my .300 Magnums lighter than 180 grains. Mostly 200+ grains exclusively. There just isn't any reason to shoot anything lighter in them because you are defeating the purpose.

    As you pointed out this is where the short fat Magnums are suffering a rather large handicap. You are giving up one of the best reasons to own a .30 caliber Magnum rifle to begin with. That is to deliver heavy bullets at very long ranges. Yes, you can shoot a 200 grain bullet out of a .300 WSM, but it isn't easy to do it, and you are giving up some velocity in the process. You have to weigh everything when selecting a given caliber. And with all of the .30 caliber Magnums avaliable out there, there just doesn't seem to be enough in the short fat Magnums corner when compared to the rest. As always, your mileage may vary. Bill T.
     
  9. pslyke

    pslyke Portland Active Member

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    all good advice, thank you guys. I'm still stuck on what I want...but thats half the fun of looking for a new rifle!
     
  10. motoman98

    motoman98 Gresham, OR Active Member

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    I own both a Mk V .300 WM and a Ruger SS .300 WSM and I like them both. I can say I save the Weatherby for open areas for Large game with heavy bullets, and the Ruger for slightly shorter areas and brush, but WTH. Like I said, I Like Them Both!
     
  11. Spaz

    Spaz Clackamas County Active Member

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    If you are looking at .300WSM, I like it in a Weatherby Vanguard. I own one, and have put close to 600 rounds through it in 2 years. Lightweight and superb accuracy are the two reasons I bought it.
     
  12. orygun

    orygun West Linn Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I'd look at Winchester themselves. A nice Classic Model 70 that can be had in stainless or blued. I consider blued the classic look, but in the Willamette Valley area deer season usually brings LOTS of rain and has steered me into stainless rifles. I'm also a CRF fan, and Winchester covers that base. Or, maybe the Kimber is your style. It's a nice "copy" of the Model 70 and can be had in blued/wood or the Montana is stainless with a kevlar stock. The Kimber 8400 Montana I have is one sweet rifle.

    Billt forgot to add the amount of powder into the recoil equation. The less ejecta (powder), the less recoil. So even though the 300 WSM is in a lighter rifle than the 300 Win Mag, it shouldn't kick the daylights out of you. Bench shooting is where you will notice it the most, but if'n you're shooting at an animal, you won't feel the recoil or hear the blast. If the bench gets painful, put together a standing rest. Recoil is much less when you are standing.
    Also, the WSMs use less powder for the velocity they attain, which is the main reason, besides being short action, for the attraction to the WSMs.
    I still believe that the good ol' 300 Win Mag will outrun the 300 WSM, especially with heavy bullets, but you've picked a winner. Since the 30-06 will do everything we're gonna do around here, a little more velocity isn't going to be a bad thing.
     
  13. pslyke

    pslyke Portland Active Member

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    I Hadn't considered a winchester because of the horrible reputation they had before they moved factories or whatever... I guess they have a good reputation once again and I really like the way they look I'll have to find one to hold and see how it feels. I like their extremem weather ss with the fluted barrel.

    I also like the Remington cdl sf buut I would have to get an aftermarket stock cause orygun is right its way wet around here during season. I don't See a Remington with a nice sporter barrel and quality synthetic stock like the m70 has.
     
  14. BK13

    BK13 PNW Member

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    My short fat .30 is a Winchester Extreme Weather. Seems like a nice package, but I haven't wrung it out at all. Darn this working out of town!
     
  15. nmntz

    nmntz terrebonne Member

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    That is an awesome choice on caliber. One of my first real "custom rifles" is chambered in 300 wsm and its a hammer. 1275 yards and still going, lol. I am gonna take it out to 2000 yards eventually, here is a pic of it now. and i would recommend win70 or rem700.

    IMAG0102.jpg
     
  16. DBake

    DBake WA Member

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    Where did you get your information on the short mags abusing barrels quicker?
     
  17. billt

    billt Glendale, Arizona Active Member

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    It's not so much "abuse" as it is the shorter,wider powder column does produce slightly more throat erosion just ahead of the chamber. A gross example of this is the .223 WSSM. Articles have provided information showing barrels in this caliber have had significant throat erosion in just 350 to 400 rounds. When compared to a standard .223 / 5.56 MM which can last several thousand rounds. Yes, the .223 WSSM provides more velocity, but it hardly seems worth it if your going to cook off a barrel in one afternoon of Prairie Dog shooting.
     
  18. Bigfoot

    Bigfoot Clack Co. OR Well-Known Member

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    Don't worry about the weight of the rifle just make sure it has a good recoil pad. Mine weighs 6.8 lb loaded, scoped and slung, thankfully it came with a 1" thick Pachmayr Decelerator pad. Factory loads don't faze me although the muzzle climb is considerable. I bought a Vais brake for it at the time of purchase but I've decided that I don't need it so the barrel remains unthreaded. If you really want to shoot it a lot work up some 308 or -06 equivalent loads for deer and practice and save the full power loads for elk season.
     
  19. 2506

    2506 Seattle Well-Known Member

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    I happen to think 165 grains is optimal for my 300 RUM. It launches Accubonds at 3600 fps--that's flat shooting. That bullet at that speed will kill anything in North America, DRT.
     
  20. rodell

    rodell Newcastle, WA Active Member

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    I like the 300 WSM - the case is about optimum at 30 caliber. Barrel life isn't an issue for a hunting implement.

    In your price range, the Browning, Winchester, Tikka T3 and the Sako A7 would all be good choices, along with the Vanguard. I would highly recommend you look at the Sako A7.

    I don't have any experience with the Kimbers, but lots of people recommend them.