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Old January 31, 2014, 03:20 PM   #1
D.A.M.
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Will a .300 Win Mag Really Kill Better Than a .30-06?

Does a .300 win mag have any more noticable ability to kill elk and black bear under 300 yards than a .30-06? And if so, how much more kill ability dwould you say a .338 win mag has than a .300 win mag?
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Old January 31, 2014, 03:43 PM   #2
eldermike
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The question deals more with down-range considerations. Less bullet drop and more retained energy based upon more powder used. Given the same shot and the same bullet more powder wins.
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Old January 31, 2014, 04:06 PM   #3
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Under 300? No. The '06 has plenty of juice, and dead is dead. Longer range, sure. Shooting the same bullet, the .300 WM will reach further. How much? Check one of the on line ballistic calculators. I shoot a .338 WM, but it's kind of a different beast. While you can shoot, say, 200 grain bullets at about the same velocity as the .300, they will have a slightly inferior BC. The '33' comes into its own with 250 (and bigger) bullets at moderate velocity. Bone crushers that carry a lot of energy a long way out. I like the round, and there are a number of folks that swear by it. But it's really overkill in the Lower 48.
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Old January 31, 2014, 04:42 PM   #4
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In my opinion, at the distances you are talking about, the 30-06 is going to do just as good a job as the 300 Winchester Mag. I have very limited experience with the 338 Winchester Mag so can't comment on that.
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Old January 31, 2014, 05:15 PM   #5
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With equal bullet weights the 300 WM gives about 50-100 yards more effective range. And a 30-06 with good handloads will still have enough power for elk at near 500 yards. If you are good enough shot to make hits at 550-600 then the 300 has a slight edge at those ranges.

I don't see any advantage to the 33's. If you compare comparable 30's to 33's such as 308 vs 338 fed, 30-06 vs 338-06, or 300 mag vs 338 mag. The 33's will shoot equal bullet weights about 50 fps faster. But the 30's give much better ballistics and penetration when equal weights are used and will outperform the 33's at any range. A .03" greater bullet diameter is simply not any advantage.

You have to move up significantly in bullet weight for the 33's to equal or beat the 30's at close range. Then you give up longer range performance. A 30-06 or 300 mag shooting 200-220 gr bullets will do anything one of the 33's will do shooting 225-250 gr bullets.

If a 30-06 or 300 mag isn't enough gun, I'd go straight to a 375 and skip everything in between.
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Old January 31, 2014, 05:38 PM   #6
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Your shoulder might not approve.
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Old January 31, 2014, 05:54 PM   #7
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A 300 does not "kill better" than an 06. It does the same thing with an additional 75 to 100 years of range.
Think of it as an 06 with small percentage more range. That's a realistic way to see it.

If the 180 grain bullet drops 24 inches at 400 yards when it’s zeroed at 200 from the 30-06, the same bullet will drop about 19” with a 300.
If you look at what that 5 inches equates to, compared to the 57,600 inches that make up 400 yards, you can see that the percentage of advantage is quite small indeed.

5 inches flatter trajectory may make a difference to some who are really good shots, and many men are, but I have to submit this as a back-drop to the discussion;
If you can take advantage of a 5” advantage, you must necessarily be able to hold a wobble of about 5” at that range. If you can hold for 5” less elevation you can hold it. Right?
So if you can hold it you could also hold 5” higher.

So much for the huge advantage of a 300 over the 06!

There is nothing wrong with a good 300. Quite the opposite.
But they are not death rays that beat the old 06 by 2X as many seem to think. They are just the same bullet going a bit faster. Enough faster to see a 5” flatter trajectory at 400 yards.
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Old January 31, 2014, 06:48 PM   #8
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It depends on where you are going to shoot the animal. I've seen 30-06 bullets not pass through a deer when crushing through bones on a double shoulder shot. My .300 has always passed through and dropped them dead. Dead is dead, but from what I've seen at my camp among friends it's a matter of how far do you want to track an animal
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Old January 31, 2014, 08:34 PM   #9
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Remember that bullets kill game. Cartridges just shoot them. And the faster bullets strike game, the more effective they are.

That .300 will shoot a given bullet about 10% faster than a .30-06 will. At 300 yards away, game won't know what cartridge shot that bullet.

And a .30-06 has twice the barrel life as a .300 Win Mag. Plus, a .30-06 is much easier to shoot accurately with.
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Old January 31, 2014, 09:48 PM   #10
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I've taken elk with 30-06,300mag and 338mag and few others. When nephew got serious about wanting to hunt elk I gave him a 300mag. He's take some nice bulls/bucks with that rifle and my largest bull I ever killed was with that rifle.

I've never put myself into a spot what ever rifle I'm using won't do the job so I'm not into judging which kills faster or whatever. I've always like the 30 cal mags. I started using 30-06 mainly for cow elk tag and I get little more picky on a bull tag and got my cow tag filled last year with 30-06.

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Old February 1, 2014, 12:10 PM   #11
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Quote:
It depends on where you are going to shoot the animal. I've seen 30-06 bullets not pass through a deer when crushing through bones on a double shoulder shot. My .300 has always passed through and dropped them dead. Dead is dead, but from what I've seen at my camp among friends it's a matter of how far do you want to track an animal
At the ranges listed by the OP there is no difference. Past that its pretty small improvement for a much higher cost in cartridges, rifle and barrel life (if you target shoot, hunting a sight in will not be enough to wear the barrel out). Hand loaded 30-06 with the right progressive powders will match factory loads.

The difference is the bullet and how it performs. You have to have the right bullet for the game and distance you are shooting at.

In the case of the above, he is obliviously using the wrong bullets in the 300 for his shooting and the 30-06 did what it was supposed to (expended all its energy on the target) . If the 30-06 had been a good heart lung shot maybe not. It was a kill shot, just not a good one.

The 300 would likely have done the same thing if hit in the same spot angle etc (it may have gone through but it would not have killed quickly)

There is nothing magic about velocity. Shots going through are wasted effect. Poking holes through things eventually causes them to bleed out but thats not the goal. Broken down shoulders stops game as well. You may have to do a mercy shot though the game will not have gone anywhere unlike a shot through wound if it misses heart or lungs it can go a long distance before dying and be lost.

I vote for the 30-06 in all cases as I do not see the minor improvement in trajectory at distance as anything a normal shoot can achieve (some can, I would need a solid rest and if I had that 5 inch difference on long range would not affect the shot as hold over is hold over and a bit more or less is a matter of practice).

338 is far more than needed though if you are hunting moose or big bear (black bears do not count) then you can use it for dual purpose and poke holes though lighter game than large bears or moose though you better have good shot placement or said game will go dies someplace you cannot find it.
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Old February 1, 2014, 12:20 PM   #12
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Shots going through are wasted effect
Not in my opinion. I want a through shot. If you do have to track an animal an exit wound leaves a better blood trail. An entrance wound often doesn't bleed much.
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Old February 1, 2014, 12:55 PM   #13
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Like somebody said, the difference between the two is just maximum range. Way back when, I used a 35 Remington and it did a very fine job at out to 150 yards. Later I went to longer range cartridges, but the deer aren't more dead.

And then there's the difference in recoil. That'll matter to some (and me).
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Old February 1, 2014, 03:06 PM   #14
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I do like exit wounds and would choose a bullet that would exit big game, no matter the caliber/cartridge I was using. I like Barnes TTSX.

The difference between a .300Mag and a .30-06, at 300 yards or less, given identical bullet placement and identical bullets, will be how much energy the tree on the other side absorbs.
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Old February 1, 2014, 04:19 PM   #15
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Shot placement is paramount. Where you place the shot is king.
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Old February 1, 2014, 04:26 PM   #16
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No! I have limited experience on black bears, but have seen many elk shot with about every caliber/cartridge combo. that you could possible imagine from the .243 up to the 416. Thinking back I would say that I have seen more elk wounded with the various 300 magnums than any other cartridge. (this is do to shot placement not cartridge performance) I have seen very few premium 180gr 30 cal. slugs stay in an elk at the distances that you have mentioned from the 300 mags or the 3006. From my experience, when you step up to the 338 you will surely see a difference. Now I must say that I am not a big fan of the 338 mag simply because they are tough on the shoulder, but there is no denying that they work great on the elk if you can shoot them well. That's just my 2 cents I'm sure that there are others that will chime in and tell you that all you have to point a "magnum" in the general direction of an elk and they just fall right over. Some of them might even be from my hunting camp. Lol...
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Old February 1, 2014, 04:27 PM   #17
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Read into the Mk248 Mod1 300WM cartridge. It falls short of the .338LM, but close enough that our government wouldn't switch the system out at a higher price, they just converted the .308 over to the 300WM. The Mk248 Mod1 is one heck of a round. I had just under a case, they would amaze you at the accuracy and velocity at 800+ yards.

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Old February 1, 2014, 08:57 PM   #18
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Quote:
how much more kill ability would you say a .338 win mag has than a .300 win mag?
With a 225-250 grain Partition, you can shoot an Elk at any angle and get 5 feet of penetration.
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Old February 1, 2014, 09:15 PM   #19
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At 300 yards the only noticeable differences will be the amount of pain in your shoulder and the amount of ruined meat in the animal. Of course there will be more of both with the .300 win mag. A shot that only wounds the animal with a .30-06 will do the same with a .300 win mag. Shot placement and bullet construction is everything.

The main advantage of a .300 win mag will be trajectory, but that comes into play more with long range target shooting than with practical hunting range. Your still going to have to know how much to hold over or how many clicks to dial on your scope regardless if the drop is 20" or 50".
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Old February 2, 2014, 01:20 AM   #20
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There is a lot more involved than caliber. The two guns are pretty close up to 300 but as Bart said the 300 may be harder for some to shoot accurately. At this range and especially closer they better have a heavy game bullet. Bullet speed at a given range causes some concerns if you don't use the right bullet . I've seen elk dropped without problem out to 450 with a 30-06 with old silver tips. Silvertips wouldnt be my choice because more shots are at under 300 so I would choose nos partition or barnes tssx or a simular heavy game round. But I also agree that around 300 yds the 300 and 338 began to gain some edge.I believe the 300 is superior 300-600 on elk size animals. I like the 338 And it is a good choice on elk but looses its edge due faster drop and speed loss. It would though use the 338 if hunting where I may become the pray further north especially for shots out to say 350-400. A major thinng on any of these is to match the right bullet to the condition . I have seen 120 lb whitetail run off shot by a 7 mag at 75 yards like you hardly touched him. Why? Core lock at that range hits rib over the lungs and turns inside out. What eventually stopped the deer , tracking to where he got backup , 2nd shot and found the shattered rib perforated the lungs slightly, bullet without lead just under the skin. To much speed at that range for core lock to stay together I guess.

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Old February 2, 2014, 01:46 AM   #21
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One post mentioned 243 for elk and a question about black bear. I no someone that thought the 243 was big enough for elk till an already angry black bear got after him. He now has a 280 r. After hitting him 4 times without significant penetration a single shot at close range and closing fast was all that stopped him in the eye socket. Know of some elk kills with 243 but also have heard several wounded an never found. I guess if you respect your limitations it will work but that does mean turning down shots.

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Old February 2, 2014, 01:59 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Pfleuger
I do like exit wounds and would choose a bullet that would exit big game, no matter the caliber/cartridge I was using. I like Barnes TTSX.

The difference between a .300Mag and a .30-06, at 300 yards or less, given identical bullet placement and identical bullets, will be how much energy the tree on the other side absorbs.
Agreed, killed some deer this year with the TSX and have been thoroughly impressed. The shots were perfect but still DRT.

At 300yds i wouldn't hesitate to use a .243, .260/6.5CM, or .308. Two years ago shot a 200+ lb buck right around 300yds with a berger 175gr BT LR moving 2618fps out of my .308 he didn't move.

500 under most cartridges have similar ballistics as far as drop is concerned sure one will deliver more energy than another but it isn't really until extended distance that the advantage really strikes.

Quote:
One post mentioned 243 for elk and a question about black bear. I no someone that thought the 243 was big enough for elk till an already angry black bear got after him. He now has a 280 r. After hitting him 4 times without significant penetration a single shot at close range and closing fast was all that stopped him in the eye socket.
243 is good enough for elk. 688yds and DRT. As mentioned before shot placement is key. Not sure i would use it for a bear but i would take an accurate .243 and 105gr VLDs or 115gr DTACs elk hunting.
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Old February 2, 2014, 02:32 AM   #23
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I like the tssx in my 25 06 gets good penetration while expanding well at all range/ speeds and releasing almost its entire energy on the animal . It would take elk with the ideal shot at long ranges but isn't my first choice due to the fact that all situations are not ideal. Also the guy who shot the bear with the 243 pulled all bullets out of the fat with his index finger. The shot to the eye very lucky.

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Old February 2, 2014, 07:38 AM   #24
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Give some thought to the variations among rifles and hunting loads. Also the differences between advertised performance and the real world. Years ago, preparing for my first elk hunt, I took my rifles to a local gun club on their public sight-in day to check my zero. I had great fun taking advantage of a member's chronograph. My .30-06, apparently on the tight side and firing the Federal P3006R ammo, a 180 grain Nosler Partition advertised at 2880fps, clocked an average 2901fps for three rounds. The previous shooter, with a .300WinMag and a 180 grain Silvertip load had his average a few fps slower. He was not pleased, but I certainly was.

Judging from the nearly identical performance on the range, I think the Hornady Light Magnum 180s are just as fast in my rifle.
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Old February 2, 2014, 08:02 AM   #25
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The 300 MAG has more reach but that's the extent of its usefulness for majority of hunting situations. The advent of Premium bullets has enlarged wound channels and provided deeper penetration for common cartridges such as 300 Savage, .308, and 30-06 to the point where magnum performance is difficult to describe. 300 MAG is a hard kicking cartridge that is intimidating to most hunters.

A much more useful cartridge is the 280 Improved which almost matches the velocities of 7mm MAG. This cartridge also has more reach than the 30-06 but with virtually identical recoil.

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