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Old July 24, 2012, 04:27 PM   #1
jbcricket
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which rifle/cartridge dilemma...

I grew up shooting magnum rifles, everything up to 338 win mag is not a problem for me as far as recoil goes. Then i fell into the big magnum craze and at one point i bought a 340 weatherby Mark V stainless synthetic with a skinny factory 26" barrel, promptly loaded up some hot 250 gr speer grand slams that chrono'd at over 3000 fps. That was a whole new level of recoil for me. I sold that rifle and then a while later i unexpectedly aquired a rem 700 stainless synthetic in 338 RUM with a 26" factory medium contour barrel, what'd i do with that you ask?... i loaded up some 250 gr sierra game kings at max levels. Havent chrono'd them yet but the recoil is reminiscent of the weatherby i had, anyway i've finally come to the realization that i dont much care for all this recoil. Yeah i can be a tough guy and shoot them but i dont enjoy it all that much so i've decided to go with a smaller type of rifle. The dilemma i have is that i've fallen in love with the ruger hawkeye alaskan with the 20" barrel and i have to decide between the 375 ruger cartridge which probably kicks as much as the others i had, or the 338 rcm which everyone seems to think wont be around for long,.. if only ruger would offer that rifle in either 30-06 or 338 win mag i wouldnt have this problem. So the question is, does anyone have a ruger hawkeye alaskan in 375 ruger, or the mkII hawkeye compact magnum in 338 rcm and if so how do you think the recoil compares to the cartridges i've mentioned?
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Old July 24, 2012, 05:13 PM   #2
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Have you ever tried those .22 CB rounds?
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Old July 24, 2012, 08:23 PM   #3
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i've decided i hate this forum! 148 people have looked at my post and all i get is one smart ass answer!
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Old July 24, 2012, 09:10 PM   #4
imp
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Not trying to be funny, but why not choose the caliber you want, then find a suitable rifle that its chambered in? Or buy a Hawkeye Alaskan and rebarrel it, and have some sights put on it.
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Old July 24, 2012, 09:16 PM   #5
Art Eatman
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The question I nearly always--repeat, nearly--ask of myself before buying a rifle is, "What am I going to do with it?"

I know that the old ought-six is plenty good for deer out to 500 yards if need be, so I've never had any interest in going bigger.

So whatcha gonna do with this Hawkeye Alaskan?
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Old July 24, 2012, 09:26 PM   #6
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The 338 RCM would have a little less recoil than the 338 Win Mag, even in a lighter rifle, and should be a terrific game round for anything in NA. If you don't handload, you may have a problem in the future, but if you do load your own, just buy enough brass to last you and then it's no prob.
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Old July 24, 2012, 10:27 PM   #7
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just buy the 375 ruger and load to match the recoil/ballistics you want. Max loads are not required you know. Try trailboss and 375 win bullets
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Old July 24, 2012, 11:35 PM   #8
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I have a .375 Ruger, it has some recoil, it's not unmanageable but it lets you know when it goes off.
That said, I would rather shoot my .375 than a .300 Weatherby of my fathers, the recoil impulse, not energy but impulse feels much different to me.
If you don't like recoil, don't buy a magnum.
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Old July 25, 2012, 05:18 AM   #9
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i've decided i hate this forum! 148 people have looked at my post and all i get is one smart ass answer!
That's cause we don't have an answer for you. We look at the post, think "Hmmm" then click away. Would you rather have 148 smart-assed answers?
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Old July 25, 2012, 10:30 AM   #10
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Quote:
That's cause we don't have an answer for you. We look at the post, think "Hmmm" then click away. Would you rather have 148 smart-assed answers?
No, i'd rather have no comments at all then one smart ass one.
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Old July 25, 2012, 11:31 AM   #11
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Shooting should be fun for you. What about shooting do you enjoy?

There is no animal that I [that's me, not you] am likely to hunt that I can't kill handily with my 30/06.

Once when I was considering an African hunt, I shot a friends .416 Remington. Not this rifle just seemed to fit me. It handled well, had a great trigger, and just felt like a killing tool. Please imagine my dismay when I could not keep three shots on a 8 x 11" target at 100 yards offhand. That thing just plain hurt to shoot.

Now, for me, [not you] a .30/06 is at the top limit of what I consider fun. So, I have learned that by carefully selecting my bullets, I can kill most anything. A couple of years ago that rifle shot endways clear through a 325 lb. Utah Mule deer with a 180gr Hornady Interbond bullet.

But even with that rifle, 20 rounds is about all the fun I can stand for an afternoon. So, for fun, I shoot rifles that don't hurt. My .260 Remington is good for 3/8" groups at 100 yards, and close to 1" at 300 yards on a calm day. That is fun for me.

What is fun for you?
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Old July 25, 2012, 11:34 AM   #12
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i personally enjoy the 7mm rem mag
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Old July 25, 2012, 12:51 PM   #13
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No, i'd rather have no comments at all then one smart ass one.
Seriously, you mention that you don't like recoil anymore, then want to know whether to get a 338 knockyouonyourbutt or a 375 dislocatedshoulder, then you get mad about a wisecrack? Really?

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Old July 25, 2012, 01:07 PM   #14
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The 338 RCM is essentially a 338-06 in perfomance and recoil, just in a short action. Not bad really

The problem you have is wanting a particular rifle, but in a different chambeing that available. The answer is a custom, or semi-custom rifle. Buy the All Weather stainless rifle in 30-06 or 338 Win mag, have a gunsmith chop the barrel to 20" and install iron sights. That way you get the gun you want, in the chambering you want. Probably for less money.
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Old July 25, 2012, 02:13 PM   #15
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cricket, I'm with PawPaw, in that when I read your post all I could think about was 'Wow, a Ruger Compact in 338...man that's gonna hurt'. I didn't have much constructive info to offer. I have a Ruger Compact in 260 and it's delightful to shoot. Would I want it in a big caliber? No indeed. Anyway, take the advice of buying a Ruger Hawkeye and rebarrel it to 35 Whelen or buy it in 30-06 and have it modified to 30-06AI.

I have a buddy that bought a 340 Weatherby Mag for an Elk Hunt. Shot it once at the range and said "Oh, Damn...that hurt". Took it on the Elk hunt and shot one elk and came back and sold the rifle. Said "I'm not shootin that damn thing again". He could have done the hunt with way less than the 340. It's your money and your shoulder, but do you really need a cannon?
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Old July 25, 2012, 08:59 PM   #16
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The 338 RCM is a small step up over 30-06 recoil. It shoots the same bullet weights 50-75 fps faster, with .03" larger diameter. A 35 Whelen is not a "Magnum", but has recoil levels greater than a 300 "Magnum"

Just because a chambering does, or does not have "Magnum" stamped on the case does not always reflect recoil levels.
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Old July 26, 2012, 09:38 PM   #17
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Well now...I didn't calculate actual recoil, but let's look at what these various calibers (per the Lyman 49th) will do with a 200 grain bullet:

30-06 pushes it about 2650 fps max
35 Whelen pushes it at about 2700
300 H&H Mag pushes it about 2980
300 Win Mag pushes it at about 2950
338 RCM pushes it about 2950 (data from internet)

The 338 RCM should kick a good bit more than the Whelen and the 30-06. It does sure look like a good caliber, if you need that much horsepower, but it is going to kick.
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Old July 27, 2012, 12:16 AM   #18
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If you look at case capacities, then jmr40 is right on about the 338 RCM being a short action 338-06-- they're nearly identical. I would have to see the chronograph readings of 2950 with a 200 grain bullet to believe it, and I would not stand near the rifle when fired, either. I'm not saying it couldn't be done, but it would have to be very, very warm.

I believe any velocity the 338 RCM could achieve could be exceeded with the same weight bullet in the 35 Whelen at the same or lower pressures. It has a larger case capacity and a better expansion ratio.

That said, both are great cartridges and no game animal on earth could tell the difference if the proper bullet were used.
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Old July 27, 2012, 07:53 AM   #19
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A bit more digging shows you guys to be more right than I am. Real world reloading of the 338 RCM shows a 200 gr bullet at just over 2800 fps. That's a step up from the 30-06 but about the same step down from the 300 Win Mag. It looks like a useful cartridge, just like the 35 Whelen, for bigger critters (bigger than I shoot).

My first batch of 338 RCM performance data came from Hornady and not from the Lyman 49th. I shoulda know better than to use manufacturer specs.
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Old July 27, 2012, 03:34 PM   #20
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Quote:
There is no animal that I [that's me, not you] am likely to hunt that I can't kill handily with my 30/06.
I will go one step further and say that there is no animal that I am likely to hunt that I can't readilly kill with my 243.

What Art said... what exactly are you going to do with this rifle? The answer to that will drive your decision. Maybe your need a 375 or 416... or maybe a 338 win mag is all you need.
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Old July 27, 2012, 04:21 PM   #21
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Recoil is a factor of 4 things. Bullet weight, bullet velocity, , guns weight and powder weight.

I own both 338-06 as well as several 30-06 rifles. 57 gr of H4350 gives me 2800 fps with 180's from a 22" 30-06. 60 gr of the same powder gives me 2700 fps with 200's in the 338-06 from a 24" barrel. Those loads are 1-2 gr below max and I could get a little more speed from either, but accuracy is where I want it. I doubt if 2800 fps is possible in my 338-06 safely. Probably 2750, which puts it pretty close to the 338 RCM.

Accoding to this website

http://www.handloads.com/calc/recoil.asp

The 30-06 will have 21 ft lbs of recoil with 180's from an 8 lb rifle
The 338-06 will have 23 ft lbs with the 200 gr bullets in an 8 lb rifle

In the real world I doubt any game animal will ever notice the difference. The 180/30 cal has better sectional density. The 338 is .03" larger diamter and slightly heavier.
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Old July 29, 2012, 09:53 AM   #22
phil mcwilliam
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The dilemma you have is you've fallen in love with the Ruger Hawkeye 375 for all the wrong reasons,for looks alone.
It will only end in bruises and tears. You state you dont care for all this recoil in magnum rifles, yet you choose a light weight 375 to fall in love with.
I recently purchased a .375H&H CZ that weighs a bit over 11 lbs with a scope that I actually enjoy shooting. If you want to enjoy shooting large caliber rifles I recommend the heavier the better, but as others have said, it depends on what you want it for.
I find my .375H&H gets a bit heavy after half a day of walking around mountainsides.
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Old July 29, 2012, 10:27 AM   #23
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The Benelli R-1 auto is available in 338 Win. That will reduce the recoil quite a bit !
There are special recoil pads that reduce recoil nicely .You could add weights to the gun. You could reduce the load 5-10 % . You could get the barrel ported [shooters next to you will hate you] .
One or more of those will help you for sure !
You could shoot a 600NE , then the 338 would seem like a baby.
The 600NE as a steady diet usually in time causes things like detached retinas, neck and shoulder damage.
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Old July 29, 2012, 06:55 PM   #24
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You can reduce felt recoil by shooting a light weight bullet and by increasing the effective mass of the rifle. I have a 6"x 6" x 3" bag of 7 1/2 lead shot I put between the rifle buttplate and my shoulder. It sure takes the sting out.
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Old August 5, 2012, 10:33 PM   #25
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I have found that the .338 win mag is about as much recoil as I care to shoot. The cartridge is inherently very accurate 1/2 - MOA in my experience I am trying to get mine down to 1/4 MOA for comp and hunting. I get around 34-38 free lbs of recoil with the 225- 250 grain hornadys I use a light recoil pad and call it a day. The range depends on how far you are able to shoot accurately. I get 3.5 inch groups at 400 yds so I estimate my ability to hit at MOA up to 800 the problem is with large game like elk you want 1800 ft lbs of retained energy. That limits most loads to 500/600 yds UNLESS you want to shoot a 300 grainer at 2450+ FPS then it reaches out quite a bit further
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