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Old January 23, 2019, 11:52 AM   #1
Nathan
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Looking for a big 50-100yd Buffalo Rifle...

I’m thinking bolt action, CRF, FR swivel on barrel, open sights, wood stock....

I’m wanting to buy a 50-100 yd, open sight DG Rifle. I would like a Win M70 action or maybe a Ruger...Obviously the custom m70 type actions are good too.

I’m struggling with what caliber...

375 H&H...seems like it is a good choice but not quite a buffalo or elephant round

416 Rem Mag....Nice velocity with ~400 gr bullets, but is it enough?

458 Win Mag....Easy choice...more guns available

458 Lott....big...really big. No question it is enough...458 Win Mag could be reamed to this??

What is available now for under $1500....or if I pinch pennies...$2000??
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Old January 23, 2019, 12:33 PM   #2
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I've never been to Africa,and I do not pretend to be an expert on your subject.

Of course,local laws and your outfitter's rules will matter.If you have an outfitter picked out,talk to them.

My opinion,FWIW,there is a difference between being the hunter/client,and being the PH with the stopping rifle.

The PH will set the client up with a good ,workable shot before he tells you where to shoot.

Under those circumstances,with a proper bullet,if you do your part,the .375 H+H has been doing the job on any creature on earth for approaching 100 years. A really important balancing factor is this: A lot of folks can manage and shoot a 375 H+H well. I can.I enjoy it.

But I took part in a project to build some 416 Rem Magnums on P-14 actions.

I got in on sighting in the first one on the bench. I'm not ashamed to say that rifle exceeded my limits of having fun. It took extreme concentration to keep my eyes focused on the sights with no cringe or squint through the shot.

And under some circumstances,maybe taking a shot at a buffalo,my concentration might lapse. I might close my eyes as the trigger broke.

If my PH told me the 375 is not enough,I'd believe him. If my PH tod me a 375 will do nicely,I'd believe him.

In the grand scheme of things,I think the PH would prefer a client who can reliably shoot a 375 over a client with a 458 Lott who blinks.


For rifles: You might consider a Whitworth Express ( tha Zastava/Mark 10 version of a Mauser big rifle)

Or the CZ. You can get the CZ in 416 Rigby,also.


Just my opinions based on my limitations. You do what works for you.
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Old January 23, 2019, 12:46 PM   #3
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Mossberg Patriot in 375 Ruger. Save the extra $1000 to spend on your trip.
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Old January 23, 2019, 01:22 PM   #4
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Im a fan of the rigbys. But as stated above don't see any issues with the H&H. The bolt action on the other hand in one of those calibers? Traditionally are they not slightly frowned upon?
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Old January 23, 2019, 02:52 PM   #5
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A North American Bison(buffalo) doesn't need a great, big, magnum, round to kill. A .30-06 will do it. Buff were shot by natives with .36 calibre revolvers from horse back too. The reason the "Buffalo hunters" feeding the RR types used big calibres was for range. A .45-70 will kill it easily too. Lots of those around well within your budget.
That's not the same as an "I want one!" rifle. It'd be a Sharps 1874 .45-70 for me, but that's way over your budget(mine too.).
The .375 H&H is the minimum allowed dangerous game hunting cartridge in most African countries. It'll kill any bison on this continent or any other continent with no fuss.
You may want to find a way of trying one of the cartridges you think you need before buying a rifle. Guy came into the shop years ago who was going to Africa. He just had to have his own .458 Win rifle. Buys a Win M70 African and 20 rounds of ammo(about $50 Cdn. then). Picks it up on a Friday evening, he's back Saturday with the rifle, 18 loaded rounds and 2 empties asking us to sell it. A 500 grain bullet at 2100 FPS out of a 9 pound(way light, but a current Win M70 Safari Express is 9 lbs. MSRP is $1559.99) rifle recoils with 62.3 ft-lbs of energy.
And if money is an object for the rifle, you'd best look into the cost of ammo too. .357 H&H ammo starts at about $60 per 20. .458 Win at over $100.
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Old January 23, 2019, 04:36 PM   #6
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What do you plan to use it on & where?
The CZ boltguns in heavy calibers are excellent choices.

American bison, African water buffalo, which & where?
Denis

Last edited by DPris; January 23, 2019 at 05:35 PM.
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Old January 23, 2019, 05:07 PM   #7
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I based my response on this line from the OP

Quote:
375 H&H...seems like it is a good choice but not quite a buffalo or elephant round
I'm not sure where the bison interpretation came from
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Old January 24, 2019, 12:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
The bolt action on the other hand in one of those calibers? Traditionally are they not slightly frowned upon?
Do you mean compared to a double rifle? To me, bolt actions that feed we’ll have a lot of nice features that make them better in the hunting role. Bolt guns generally have better triggers and a 3rd round to feed in. They are also generally more accurate and lower cost.

Who frowns on a bolt gun in a hunting role vs a stopping role?

Quote:
And if money is an object for the rifle, you'd best look into the cost of ammo too. .357 H&H ammo starts at about $60 per 20. .458 Win at over $100.
I plan to reload. Still, these rounds cost more. I think the 375 & 416 will have better case availability.

Quote:
What do you plan to use it on & where?
The CZ boltguns in heavy calibers are excellent choices.

American bison, African water buffalo, which & where?
I looked at the CZ, but consider a firing pin locking safety mandatory, as I carry loaded when hunting.

I don’t have a hunt planned. This will just be a big rifle for fun and to scare friends with....basically as an example of what heavy recoil really is!

Regarding what buffalo, it should be Cape buffalo capable.

Last edited by Nathan; January 24, 2019 at 12:47 PM.
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Old January 24, 2019, 01:23 PM   #9
Jim Watson
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What is your experience with heavy rifles?

I think a .458 Win will be adequate to kick a flinch into your friends.

Actually, I found a .416 Remington to be a harder kicker but that might have been a function of stock shape and weight.
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Old January 24, 2019, 02:25 PM   #10
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Buffalo rifle ='s .50 or .54 Hawken. Givem a chance.

.02

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Old January 24, 2019, 04:04 PM   #11
Nathan
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Quote:
What is your experience with heavy rifles?
None...I have a 375 JDJ pistol..
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Old January 24, 2019, 04:25 PM   #12
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If you don't get a good fit with the stock, the gun will hurt.

I got a bit lucky back in 2006 and found a Weatherby in 460 for $1000. I think the guy just bought it for a novelty. He might have shot it 5 times and then the novelty wore off.

It fits me very good and I can shoot it standing without problem. Sitting at a bench is a no-no.

It is a good shooter and will push you back hard, but it does not hurt. I have pulled the trigger on a couple of 458 Win Mag, and they hurt after a few rounds. The recoil is different. Hard to explain, but if you can, shoot one a few times and then describe it here.

The 375 H&H is a kitty kat in comparison.

A buddy of mine also has a 460 and he does not reload. He paid $125 for a box of ammo and he hasn't shot all of it yet.
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Old January 24, 2019, 04:32 PM   #13
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Older brother detatched a retina shooting his .416 Remington.

I came into a H+R single barrel shotgun barrel. 10 gauge. I fitted it to an H+R 12 ga receiver. I believe the 3 1/2 reamer was applied...its been a while.

This shotgun was not weighted as the original "Goose Gun " was.

I fired it the same day I fired the 416 Rem.

When I fired the 10 ga,,the break-open lever behind the hammer was buried in the web of my hand.

That 416 had a fairly heavy Boyds laminated stock and a #5 bbl contour.It was not a FWT. It kicked as hard as that 10 ga.

A "yuk-yuk " round or two is one thing. Benching a group is ,IMO,unpleasant work.

I decided I did not need a 416 Rem. My 375 Taylor is just right.Its fun.2600 fps with a 260 gr Accubond.I'm not shooting cape buffalo or elephants.

Plenty for anything in Alaska.


FWIW,I met a Gentleman ,KB,at the range. He built an upscaled Rem 700 receiver. Barreled it in 50 BMG. No muzzle brake. He just had open heart surgey.He could not risk shooting it. He invited me to to do the deed so he could see it go boom.
I fired 3 or 4 of GI ball 50 BMG. That was fun. The 416was not.


But you do whatever makes you happy. I'd vote for a 375 H+H
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Old January 24, 2019, 07:26 PM   #14
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You can kill an American Bison with a 30-30. Every animal on the planet including elephant have been taken with 6.5X55 and 7x57.

A bolt action in 375 is a good place to be for an all around rifle and it certainly qualifies as a DG rifle. Either the Ruger or H&H version. The 375 Ruger fits in a true long action and actually has a bit more power. You'll get more rifle for less money going with 375 Ruger.

Most modern 375 H&H rifles are built on long actions that have been modified to work with the longer cartridge. Traditionally it was used on magnum length actions, but very few manufacturers make them, no USA made magnum actions.

The 375 is considered perfectly acceptable for any game in Africa, certainly more than adequate for bison. With lighter bullets it shoots with about the same trajectory as 30-06 and is usable on game as small as deer out to at least 400 yards.

Not that I'd choose one for deer hunting, but if I were hunting in Africa and wanted to use one rifle for everything from elephant to small plains game the 375 is the way I'd go.
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Old January 24, 2019, 09:06 PM   #15
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I would buy a Henry 45-70 and do it like they did 150yrs ago.
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Old January 24, 2019, 09:34 PM   #16
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Quote:
American bison, African water buffalo, which & where?
African water buffalo? Water buffalo is Asian, Cape buffalo is African.
And bison isn't buffalo at all.
Quote:
Regarding what buffalo, it should be Cape buffalo capable.
I am getting ready to go to Africa for my first time next year. I was planning on building a 375 H&H for the trip. One of my customers who goes every year says 338 Win Mag will take anything, it is only limited by laws and the shooter. Admittedly, he is a good shooter, but I have heard the same from many who went to Africa.
Quote:
375 H&H...seems like it is a good choice but not quite a buffalo or elephant round
For years, it was THE choice of customers and professional hunters alike. Enough power for elephant as long as the shooter had the pelotas to stand and face a charge. If not, there is the 416 Rigby or 458 Win Mag. Most shooters can't handle the 458 Lott or 450 African Express 3-1/2".

A lot of the historic safari rounds are obsolete or obsolescent (404 Jeffries, 505 Gibbs, 318 Westley-Richards, etc) so if you lose you ammo, you are out of luck.
Quote:
416 Rem Mag....Nice velocity with ~400 gr bullets, but is it enough?
416 Rem Mag kicks harder than the 416 Rigby for the same performance. That is one reason the Rigby has lasted 100 years, it will kill anything moving but will not kill the shooter. The 450, 500 and 600 Nitro Expresses kick really, really hard. Hard enough to detach retinas. Same with the 378 Weatherby, 416 Weatherby, 460 Weatherby, and the 458 Lott. More power only makes up for poor shot placement up to a point. And one of the most popular hunting cartridges in Africa is 300 Win Mag, FWIW. Enough oomph for gemsbok or eland, without the punishment of the 416.
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Old January 24, 2019, 09:37 PM   #17
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Well, it seems to me you want one just to impress your buddies with and really have no intention of taking a cape buffalo. Seems like a waste of money but o.k. You can get a Weatherby Vanguard Dangerous Game or Safari in 375 H&H that will easily take a Cape Buffalo. Heck Roy Weatherby took one with a .257 Weatherby.

Now if you really wanted to impress them, spend a couple of grand more and go for a Barret M99 Bolt action single shot in 416 or 50 BMG.
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Old January 24, 2019, 10:04 PM   #18
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I worked with a CZ in .375 H&H, it was a nice rifle & those BRNO/CZ rifles are well-regarded.
Perfectly safe to carry with a round chambered.

Scorch- Without getting too technical, I was merely trying to determine if American or African when he was discussing "buffalo".
More as in "which country" than where true buffalo come from.
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Old January 25, 2019, 02:52 AM   #19
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Quote:
More as in "which country" than where true buffalo come from.
Didn't mean to seem snarky, but I recently saw a picture of a water buffalo with a caption suggesting it is the same as a Cape buffalo. While water buffalo are not tiny they are not generally regarded as aggressive, unlike the Cape buffalo.
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Old January 25, 2019, 12:16 PM   #20
HiBC
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It would be interesting to hitch Mbogo up to a cart or plow. :-). I believe I'd pay a whole dollar to watch. But not real close.

I read the OP first post again. It mentioned Dangerous Game rifle,and "elephants and buffalo"

In that context,the post had nothing to do with the American Bison....which,technically,is not a buffalo.

Someone misinterpreted the OP into asking about a bison rifle and took the thread off track.(see post #5)

Clearly,the question is about rifles appropriate to dangerous game in Africa.

(Confirmed post #8 "Regarding what buffalo, it should be Cape buffalo capable. ")

American Bison rifles are not the topic.(I'd choose a BPCR single shot,or maybe an 1886 Win)

Last edited by HiBC; January 25, 2019 at 01:42 PM.
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Old January 25, 2019, 12:46 PM   #21
DPris
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That's what I was trying to clarify.
Most people call what we have "buffalo".

Our bison are not generally considered dangerous game, but didn't know if original poster was referring to US rifle or a true dangerous game gun for Africa.

Generally speaking, there's no need for anything bigger than a .375 for ANY game in America, including Alaska.
And you can get by with less here.

Africa would be a different matter, if you have the money to get there.
And a .375 is still fully viable on Cape buffalo.

But- if you don't even plan to ever go, no point in buying a major shoulder buster that runs even heavier.
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Old January 29, 2019, 04:00 PM   #22
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Quote:
Mossberg Patriot in 375 Ruger. Save the extra $1000 to spend on your trip.
Absolutely! I have one and it is awesome--shoot it right and you can shoot it well (like most big hitters). A modern, conventional-sized chamber cartridge that will drop anything on earth within the range you're talking about.
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Old January 29, 2019, 04:42 PM   #23
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Bout beat myself to death

My wife bought me a really nice factory built Thompson Center Hawken for about the price of the kit. We just loved the old Monkey Wards surplus store. It was a fixture in PDX for many many years. Got the gun on closeout for about a hundred bucks back in the day. Gorgeous rifle.

Me being a 20 something kid just have to go bigger. I bought some 450? grain buffalo bore bullets for it. Then I went to the range.

110 grains of holy black with those heavy bullets beat the crap out of me from the bench, and yes I shot it prone too....prone was brutal.

I learned years later that curved butt belongs on your arm, not your shoulder. I was black and blue for a couple weeks.

It was easy shooting it standing, easy to soak up that big push. From the bench or prone?.....never again. I still have one of those mushroomed bullets that I dug out of a clay bank, nice mushroom of likely 80 caliber or so.

That was my experience with a big boomer. I have not fired any of the dangerous game smokeless rounds, and have no burning desire to do so.
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Old January 29, 2019, 07:55 PM   #24
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Nathan: I think you are over doing it. Go pick up a H&H single shot 10 Gage Mag. and a 5 round box of heavy buck shot for it. That will rattle your teeth. But before you hand it to your so called friend to shoot. Make sure you show him how its done. Just to be fair.
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Old January 29, 2019, 08:04 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathan View Post
...
This will just be a big rifle for fun and to scare friends with....basically as an example of what heavy recoil really is! ...
That's easy. Bring your friends to Texas and you can experience the full 12,000 ft-lbs of excitement pulling the trigger on Boomer (.50 BMG) with the suppressor on and muzzle brake off.

Maximum 1 shot per shoulder.
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