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Old November 19, 2017, 05:04 PM   #1
welnet
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Medium/Long Range Rifle

I’m thinking about purchasing a new medium/long range bolt action rifle. Trying to decide between .308 Win or .300 Win Mag in a Savage rifle. It will be used primarily as a target rifle on a 100 yard range (10 minutes from home). The longest range use would most likely be around 600 yards (again, target shooting) when I feel like making a day trip about half a day’s commute from my home (not often). I’m not a hunter – BUT – I want something that is viable to hunt with. The largest big game in my area is Elk, the largest dangerous animal is Black Bear. The avid hunter’s I know who hunt the areas around us say a 200 yard shot is very rare, most shots at deer and elk they have taken are usually 75-150 yards. So 308 Win or 300 Win Mag? This will not be my first/only rifle, just adding to the line up
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Old November 19, 2017, 05:16 PM   #2
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The 308 is more than capable of hunting up to moose and within 200 yards you can shoot point blank sighted in 1-1/8" high at 100Yards. The 308 cartridge has been used in 1000 yard competitions and is no slouch. Shooting it at 600 yards will only take an accurate load and a change of sight adjustments.

Unless you really enjoy a hard beating to your shoulder you won't often use the 300 magnum on paper targets. It is unnecessarily brutal unless you are going after dangerous game 5 times your weight or large game at 4 to 500 yards. For deer, elk or black bear the 308 is more than enough gun.
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Old November 19, 2017, 05:20 PM   #3
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I 2nd the 308, lots of available off the shelf ammo and it wont beat your shoulder or your wallet to shoot it
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Old November 19, 2017, 05:24 PM   #4
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If 600 yards is max range, most any .30 cal will work fine, be it .308, .30-06, or .300 Blackout.
I would avoid 7.62x39 though.

As shootist alluded to, zero at 200 yards and your sights are good out a little further.

Edited: Mia culpa, thought 1 wrote another.
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Old November 19, 2017, 05:28 PM   #5
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I'd say 6.5 Creedmoor #1 with 308 in 2nd place. The 300 WM isn't even in the discussion. Either of those will cleanly take deer out to 500 yards or farther and elk or bear at 400 with a fraction of 300 WM recoil and cost. That is assuming YOU have the skills. I'm not advocating everyone taking game at those ranges, simply stating what the cartridges are capable of. Very few shooters are capable.

The 300 doesn't start to show an advantage in hunting until you get beyond 600 yards. And it doesn't offer any advantage for target shooting until you get past a mile compared to the 6.5. The 308 starts running out of gas a little past 1000 yards, 6.5 will remain supersonic to 2000 yards. All of the 1000 yard records are being set with rifles in various 6.5 cartridges.

There is nothing at all wrong with 308, but the 6.5 has about 25% less recoil and it beats 308 beyond about 200 yards. At inside 200 yards 308 has the edge on paper. Match grade rifles and ammo is readily available at very good prices. Even Walmart is selling match grade ammo loaded with Berger bullets for $28/box. Hornady match ammo is about the same price, just not available at Walmart. You can buy a rifle out of the box under $400 for either caliber with enough accuracy to do what you want. Match grade ammo for a 308 will set you back around $40 and expect $60+ for really good 300 WM ammo.
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Old November 19, 2017, 05:34 PM   #6
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30 Carbine!! Just kidding!

308 will work fine for everything your looking to do.
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Old November 19, 2017, 05:56 PM   #7
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Never heard of a 30-30 or a 300 Blackout being a 600 yd target rifle.
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Old November 19, 2017, 07:32 PM   #8
Art Eatman
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.308s have been successful in long-range competition, and are certainly good for elk, moose and black bear.
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Old November 19, 2017, 08:24 PM   #9
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Another vote for .308.
Reduced recoil of the 6.5's is a plus, as is an exponentially increasing advantage beyond 600- but IMO if longer distance shooting isn't a consideration ammo variety/availability/cost makes .308 the one.
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Old November 20, 2017, 07:55 AM   #10
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You'll lose interest in shooting the 300WM from the bench pretty quick.
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Old November 20, 2017, 10:27 AM   #11
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I would suspect the largest dangerous animal in your area (as well as all of ours) is Homo Saipan's.

A stick is a good choice to use on black bear.

308 and 30 WM are to far apart as to be a non starter.

As 6.5 is well known for use on the Scandinavian regional meese, I would think it would work as well on an Elk.
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Old November 20, 2017, 12:31 PM   #12
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Like Mobuk says, a .300 Mag will not be fun to shoot all day. Excessive felt recoil, noise and muzzle blast. And there's no game in North America you can't kill with a .308. However, if you're planning on a heavy barreled target rifle,(like say a Savage M12). Their M10 GRS would do though.) it's probably will not be a great hunting rifle anyway.
"...the Scandinavian regional meese..." That's the 6.5 x 55, not the Creedmoor.
Homo what? snicker.
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Old November 20, 2017, 12:33 PM   #13
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I don't disagree with most of the posts, but I shoot both, and I don't agree that recoil is a huge issue unless your playing PRS, tactical steel, or another rapid shot, recoil management game, in which case even .308 is way too much without recoil mitigation.

My .300WM is a heavy rifle with a full fluted plama barrel. With either the Badger Brake or an EA can it has considerably less felt recoil than a .308 without recoil mitigation. It's pleasant to shoot an 80-100 round match. I don't feel like I've done anything special when I'm done. Yes, the scope jumps off target when you pull the trigger, but you're not feeling it shot to shot, and that's with 210gr running around 2,850fps.

Obviously it's way more than a 6mm or 6.5mm with a big brake or can, but that's virtually no recoil. Those are also have very little energy at longer range, and they are much more affected by poor, windy conditions compared to a 210gr out of a .300WM. They're great for paper or steel, or game at medium range, but not good for taking longer shots ethically IMO.

I shoot sporting clays frequently and if I shoot a round and then a couple of boxes for break n' chip, or team 5 stand I have a visibly bruised shoulder for a couple of days afterwards. I never start noticing till after more than 100 birds, so I guess I'm not very recoil sensitive. I'm used to high round count 12ga, and long matches.

I've certainly shot many .300WM rifles that would beat the hell out of you, but there are plenty of ways around that if what you're after is a lot of energy and penetration out in teeny tinny land. It's not "THE BEST LR" cartridge for sure, but it's certainly the most available, affordable to shoot, and I don't find it difficult to tune it to the rifle.

I shoot my .300 WM a lot less than my lighter and faster rifles, but then I send way more rounds down range competing in tactical steel rather than hunting. I know that .300WM has fallen out of favor, but I'm still a huge fan, know lots of hunters and LR hunters who love it, and don't see that changing. There certain games where you still see .300WM in the winners circle frequently.
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Old November 20, 2017, 05:12 PM   #14
welnet
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Thanks for all the feedback - I think .308 it will be
I thought about 6.5 creedmoor, but with a barrel throat life of around 1200 rounds, I would have to be swapping the barrel out almost every year. From the feedback here, looks like the .308 will do everything good that I want to do.
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Old November 20, 2017, 05:36 PM   #15
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^^^
Match accuracy of the 6.5 Creedmoor should be around 2000 or so, with "hunting accuracy" maybe 50% more. Not bad, really. The .243/6 Creedmoor is in the neighborhood of what you stated. That's why the 6.5 is so popular, it's a reasonable compromise between velocity and throat erosion.

Barrel life (oversimplified) is a function of the amount of powder burned/bore diameter. Take a 6.5 case and neck it down as with 6.5/6 Creedmoor, or the various iterations of the .308- 7mm-08, .260 (same as 6.5 Creed), and .243 (same as 6 Creed).
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Old November 20, 2017, 09:58 PM   #16
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308 all day. No question.
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Old November 21, 2017, 01:38 AM   #17
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7mm-08.... Far better suited to the posted uses of the rifle.
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Old November 21, 2017, 04:41 AM   #18
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Ridgerunner665 Big fan of the 7-08 here and have to agree whole heartedly..I own 3 for different hunting situations.
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Old November 21, 2017, 09:19 AM   #19
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Do you reload?

If not,
6.5 Creedmoor is going to be hard to beat if mostly target shooting, with the 308 Win or 7-08 being the better all around.
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Old November 27, 2017, 10:35 AM   #20
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If you had to shoot .30, a .308 will be better. The 300 WM is expensive to shoot. The 6.5mm in the creed or 6.5/284 are great options to consider.
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Old November 27, 2017, 10:42 AM   #21
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.260, 6.5CM, 7mm-08, .308 would be my suggestions. Not a huge difference in performance on game animals, but the first two will be less recoil than the .308 for target shooting.
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Old November 27, 2017, 04:23 PM   #22
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Quote:
Thanks for all the feedback - I think .308 it will be
I thought about 6.5 creedmoor, but with a barrel throat life of around 1200 rounds, I would have to be swapping the barrel out almost every year. From the feedback here, looks like the .308 will do everything good that I want to do.
A Savage is an easy rifle to rebarrel. There are gobs of pre fit barrels by a lot of mfg you just screw on and head space is set by a gauge not any reaming.

Of the barrels, Shilen and Lother Walther are the ones I have experience with and like.
XC Barrels not so much (rougher and so so accuracy wise)

While the 6.5 is a great caliber, you will get a lot more roudns out of 308. Shoot enough you will need to replace the gun or get a new barrel.

Cabellas has two on sale (store models, you won't get those elsewhere) , the 12FV I think is under $300, the 10T is under $500.

I like the 12FV as it has the Top bolt release where it belongs (my opinion).

Boyds makes great stocks when you want to replace them. The 10T has the better OEM stock.
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Old November 27, 2017, 04:36 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by std7mag
30 Carbine!! Just kidding!
Perfect for a long range pistol!
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Old November 28, 2017, 11:01 AM   #24
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I shot a lot of 308 and 300 WM in 1000 yard competition. Going over some of my old score books, on the average, my 308 scores are higher. Fatigue kicks in with 300 Mags.

Either work for hunting, just people tend to shoot the 308s better.

I dont hunt with either. My primary hunting round it the 270 Win. Good as any for long range hunting.

Now after saying that, the last two years I'm been playing with the 6.5 CM. I'm totally impressed. It could easily pass my 270 as a hunting round.

As to competition, now days for me its mostly 30-06 as I got involved in the CMP GSM Vintage game.

Not legal, but I've often thought how impressive a M1903a3 or a4 would be in a 6.5 CM.
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Old November 28, 2017, 01:45 PM   #25
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Any centerfire round is going to have a barrel life issue. As for the 6mm or 6.5 compared to a .308 with any of those 3 if you reload your own, and buy in huge bulk to cut per round cost. You spend tbousands for ammo to wear out the barrel that you spend a couple hundred or more to replace. So that ahould be a non issue in the end.
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