Gun Deals
Southwest Firearms
Simply Triggers
Sporting Systems
J&B Firearm Sales
Buster Beaver Cerakote
Defensive Arts
Low Price Guns
Oregon Rifleworks
Advertise on Northwest Firearms
HighLine Firearms
Messages
488
Reactions
254
I know we all love those whats the best caliber questions, so here's another.

I am looking to get an additional precision rifle. I have one in .308 that work well and I enjoy shooting, but want something different. I am thinking maybe something that will extend beyond the range of the .308. At first I had considered maybe just going with a 6.5 Creedmore as those seem to be all the rage these days, but not sure I am getting much more over the .308 other than a flatter trajectory. I will be using it for fun, so won't be shooting matches with it and I will be reloading. I am thinking maybe a .338 Lapua, .338 Norma or .300 Norma, but I am hoping some of the long range guys on here can school me as shoot ARs mostly. Thanks in advance.
 

mortar maggot

Messages
965
Reactions
1,100
Just now getting into this long range stuff. I went 338Lapua because I got a bunch of factory loaded ammo real cheap, and it has Lapua brand brass. It was so cheap I can fire off a round and have a piece of brass for free.

If doing it from total scratch I believe the 338 Norma is a better option, as the case is shorter and you can seat the bullet out further.

Ballistically I believe that they are virtually the same.

The Lapua has more Brass options, Peterson makes some really good brass also. But I am sure the Norma will get more of a following soon.

The same applies to dies, just more Lapua support. But with that said you will likely be looking at high end dies, or custom made dies even really crazy. The true precision dies are made in both. Lee, Hornady, RCBS, make good stuff and make Lapua dies, not sure about the Norma dies.

I went with L.E. Wilson inline dies
 
Messages
488
Reactions
254
That is helpful. It is a tough decision because as you said, the market support for the Lapua is leaps and bounds above the Norma calibers.
 
Messages
26,755
Reactions
65,505
I just sold my .50 BMG. I have a number of .308/7.62x51 rifles which seem adequate out to 1km (yes, I have shot a 7.62x51 at that distance). I guess it depends on why you need precision; competition? Hunting? Self-defense?

If I had to choose, it would probably be .338 LP, but I have given up any pretense of trying long distance shooting (I was never really into it, certainly not in any serious way - just enough to be aware of what happens and what my rifle was capable of).
 

Ura-Ki

Messages
17,621
Reactions
68,988
.300 Win Mag, might as well take advantage of all the ballistic data available for it, and it's a well known caliber with some pretty serious potential, and it's also more of a challenge! .338 Lapua is a lot of fun, especially once you start to home in on the skill set it takes to get the most out of it, but recoil can be brutish, especially with a lot of the factory stocks, and it requires a serious muzzle brake, which will not endure you to fellow shooters at the range! Everything is more expensive for the .338 Laupa, so there is also that, and they eat pounds of powder, not ounces! :D
 
Messages
488
Reactions
254
Yeah, I figured with the lapua I would be using a lot of powder after looking into the common loads people are using. I did give the .300 win mag a thought as well and I know with the correct loading (ie very hot) it can come close to what the lapua can do. I had considered the .50 BMG, but just can't think of a practical reason to get one because it's not something you could ever hunt with and a lot of ranges have bans on .50 BMG for various reasons.

I'm not saying you would want to hunt with a bench rifle though either, but the potential exists. As I said, I am mostly just looking for something that will extend beyond the range of my .308 and will be used for something new to try as I have not done a ton of shooting beyond 700-800 yards or so.
 

flashpan

Messages
1,694
Reactions
1,903
For what it's worth.. a fair number of the boys who shoot paper in competition at 1000 yards use the 284. They are are custom rifles with chambers set up for 180/190 grain bullets. Not a big boomer like the 300/338 class but they are nicer to shoot.
Expensive rabbit hole any way you chase it.:)
 
Messages
8,608
Reactions
21,734
For what it's worth.. a fair number of the boys who shoot paper in competition at 1000 yards use the 284. They are are custom rifles with chambers set up for 180/190 grain bullets. Not a big boomer like the 300/338 class but they are nicer to shoot.
Expensive rabbit hole any way you chase it.:)

It used to be that the .284 was a real barrel burner. A father and son team in our club both shot them with good results, but admitted that they changed their barrels every year. They'd turn up in January to settle the new barrels in and check their loads, and then shoot the season - then do the same the next year with a new barrel after the edge had gone off the old one in as few at 700 rounds or so....so they said,
 
I sold my 338 LM and now shoot 338 Edge instead. Almost identical, with regard to ballistics.
I would consider either one of those cartridges as 2 mile capable.
Problem with a big boomer like the Lapua or Edge, if you put a brake on it, it's obnoxious on the line.
With and without a brake, I shoot a 7mm Long Range Magnum (Gunwerks cartridge). Without brake, I shoot a 6.5 Swede Ackley Improved. Both are a joy to shoot, and I consider those 2km rifles.
@Ura-Ki wrote about the 300 Win Mag. There are also guys who shoot the 338 RUM, 300 RUM and 7mm RUM out to a mile. The 7 is a barrel torch.
You might also look into the 6.5 PRC. Currently brass is only offered by Hornady. When ADG and Peterson start making brass for them, the cartridge will be an excellent long range precision and hunting gun to load for and shoot.
If you're just doing paper out to 1K, most cartridges will do that if you do your part. @flashpan's rifle is a hoot to shoot.
Do you belong to DRRC, Tri County, or another club, or do you plan on going BLM like Sawtel or Colton area?
 
Messages
488
Reactions
254
I live not far from the Colton area, but have been considering switching to a club with a 1000 yard range as my current club only offers 300 yards. Wow, you guys have given me so many calibers to look at I am more lost now than I was before. Lol.

I have seen some really good results with the 6.5 PRC that folks have posted about online.
 
Messages
1,137
Reactions
2,372
I've been reading this book, "Precision Shooting at 1000 Yards" edited by Dave Brennan. It's a couple of years old but totally crammed with good useful information I found by reading that there's a few guys using .264 Win. I'm not promoting that but it was interesting. 6.5X284 seems like a decent choice.
 

ELRShooter

Messages
71
Reactions
142
I'm happy with both my .308 and 6.5 CM at 1,000 yards. I too wanted something different and ended up landing on the 300 PRC because of lower ammo cost and recoil compared to the 338 Lapua and 300 Norma. It's really nice to squeeze the trigger on and I've stretched it to a mile so really happy with the performance. Ammo cost is just under $2 a round.
 

flashpan

Messages
1,694
Reactions
1,903
It used to be that the .284 was a real barrel burner. A father and son team in our club both shot them with good results, but admitted that they changed their barrels every year. They'd turn up in January to settle the new barrels in and check their loads, and then shoot the season - then do the same the next year with a new barrel after the edge had gone off the old one in as few at 700 rounds or so....so they said,
Yep...the reg competition folks will spin on a new barrel a year or more. They will get around 1200 rnds per barrel but each barrel is different. The 6.5/284 barrels had a lot less life ... thus the popularity in 7mm.
 
Southwest Firearms
Advertise on Northwest Firearms
Sporting Systems
Cerberus Training Group
Let Freedom Ring
Copeland Custom Gunworks

Upcoming Events

Oregon Arms Collectors January Gun Show
Portland, OR
Wes Knodel Gun Shows
Chehalis, WA
Wes Knodel Gun Shows
Redmond, OR

Latest Resource Reviews

New Classified Ads

Top