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February 27, 2008

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The .338 for Deer, and Other Bad Craziness

A number of you on the previous post asked what was I doing with a .338 in the Maine whitetail woods when I have been yowling the praises of the 6.5 Swede and the 7mm/08. Two reasons: First, I was looking for an excuse to use the .338, which had never been away from home. Second, as I said, tracking in Maine is very difficult when there's no snow on the ground. The last whitetail I killed up there moved less than 75 yards from where it was hit, but it took myself and another, much more skilled, tracker a couple of hours to find it, crawling on our hands and knees. What the .338 gives you over smaller cartridges is more internal damage and a big enough exit hole on the far side that you get a decent blood trail instead of a drop every 12.2 yards.

As for killing power, I direct your attention to the comments of Mr. Dick McPlenty on the previous blog, whose command of the facts and logic are nothing less than sublime. He is correct that there is little, if any, difference in killing power (provided the bullet goes where it should) between cartridges, and that strength of modern bullets has pretty much blurred whatever difference they may have. (I knew of an African PH who used a 7x57 Mauser as his backup rifle. He claimed he got the same penetration as he did with a .375 H&H, and that he could get off four aimed shots in the time it took to get off two with the .375.)

One of the worst cases of losing a game animal I ever saw happened in New Mexico in 1977. A hunter I ran across had flung 19 .338 rounds at an elk that probably would have made B and C, and hit it at least several times. He started shooting at around 400 yards when the bull was out in the open, but the animal made it into the timber and was never found.

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Comments

sarg

WAMTNHUNTER, of course you are more adept to see sucking chest wounds, Exit holes, etc in combat, everyone is shooting FMJ bullets Not really made for proper expansion. I still say older writers would not want a bullet that exited the animal. a bullet does not have to expand to exit an animal, just be too heavy or too fast for the size critter you are shooting. Simple isn't it?

sarg

Hey, anyone of you guys seen the muzzleloading barrel for the Mossburg 500 shotguns? Midway USA has them. Anyone tried one yet??

WA Mtnhunter

Sarge

You are correct in the usual definition of a sucking chest wound.

However, if you ventillate the chest cavity above the diaphram ON BOTH SIDES, there is a better chance that both lungs will collapse. Elk have thick hides with a good layer of fat during hunting season and a small diameter hole in one side can be covered up and sealed by the shifting hide rendering the lungs operable. You put a .35 caliber hole on both sides and the air will go out of that dude!

To each his own. That has been my experience. I have only shot one elk that I didn't recover in short order. I hit him high on the shoulder and didn't hit the spine obviously. We blood trailed him for over a mile, mostly on hands and knees. I did not take a follow up shot because I was confident he would fall over any second. Wrong! Another mistake that I never repeated.

Jim in Mo.

Mark-1,
I was going to make the very same post but thought better cause as a kid I'd throw rocks at birds when I ran out of BB's. Also if I'm not mistaken about you or another mark, WHERE'S MY PIZZA!

Clay Cooper

David Petzal

First of all, you have my most humble apology!
The .340 Weatherby is in fact a .338 on steroids and not only you can add moose to that list and 1” inch thick plate Steel may I add! So you took your .338 to Africa in 1987 and took a dozen antelope of various types plus several crocodiles? I would have liked to see your reactions on your first African Trophy and I bet it was a dandy too! Speaking of one inch plate steel, my Brother has a 340 Weatherby and shot several holes thru it. So I decided, well if he can do it with a 340 Weatherby, my 338 Win Mag might do it too, WRONG! Talk about having a 250 grain Nosler Partition whistle over your head WOW! That 200+ fps does make a difference!

Clay Cooper

Hey Shaky
338-06 is not a Wildcat?
O’Brother here we go again!
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The .338-06 is a wildcat cartridge based on the .30-06. It allows heavier .338 caliber bullets to be used from the .30-06 non-belted case. This is a better choice for heavy bodied game such as moose, elk, and black bear than the .30-06. 338 caliber bullets became more widely available after the introduction in the late 1950s of the .338 Winchester Magnum cartridge, frequently chambered in the Winchester Model 70 rifle. The .338-06 maintains much of the benefits of the .338 Magnum cartridge but has substantially less recoil, makes more efficient use of powder, and allows use of widely available .30-06 commercial and military cases. The trade off though, is less available range due to reduced muzzle velocity. It is similar in concept to .333 OKH as well as the .35 Whelen, which also use the .30-06 brass case as a basic for the cartridge.

Rocky Mtn Hunter

AS most of you know my thoughts on calibers, 30-06's; I do believe you can use to large a bullet as well as to small. Like Sarg said, use a bullet that opens up and flares out and destroys the vitals. I;m guilty of using to large a bullet due to the fact I hunt the Rockies and hunt both Elk and Mule Deer at same time. I forget sometimes when i arrive home and when w-tail season opens I continue to use the l80's. This psat fall i shot a Buck at 270 yds using the l80 gr Scricco's, the bullet entered about 2" above teh top of the rigfht foreleg and exited the same on teh left side. The bullet also made hamberger out of his Vitals. That deer, dumped a 5 ft high fence, ran over 80 yds, never saw a drop of blood, but when my Son got to the deer,blood was coming out of both holes like a water hose, plus from his nose and mouth. Now, did I use to much bullet or not? Both legs were broken as well, how it ran at all beats me. With that same gun and ammo in Mt 2 weeks earlier,I shot a 4 x 4 at 345 yds, bullet entered his rear left rib about 5 " below his back bone and went all way thru the deer and out his right front shoulder.Yep, he fell in his tracts. So in 2 different cases same gun and ammo with two complete different success stories. I do believe the last one ran on pure fright ashe was standing brodside to me and had to make the fence jump and run. No tell me what gr bullet I should have used in each case or did i use the correct one? I am a firm believer in trust in your ability and the fiearm. This 700 CDL just feels correct to me, after I added 2 lb wt to butt and got the gun at 10 lbs. with a 4lb trigger. And, I pratice a lot before I head West. Just hope I can draw again as age catching up.Hey, any you guys hunted Elk in KY. I'm applying thanks to Sarg, hopefully will draw and be near home and save a few $$ to buy the new Marlin on order in 270????? Can you believe that? after my sermons on 06's? but I want to try the 270 on Lopes in WY.I know how the man felt who sold his 30-30, I did the same thing, but a few years ago, ran into a guy needing $ and bought a like new 336 in 30-30. This one I will keep as it's my woods gun, open sights. Hopefully can get my wife to use it this fall and put her shotgun aside. Shoot-um-straight and often.

In 45+ yrs., I have never had a Nosler Partition fail, period!!!
However, I have every Siera HP Boatail fail on big game. They never opened up and went straight through with on exception. I neck shot a mulie at aprox. 300 yds with 139 grain and it lodged under the skin after penatrating the Spine. If I hadn't hit bone it would have never dropped the deer. The bullet was so perfectly formed it could be reloaded again if I chose. That was in the 1965-75 era. I have always used any thing but Sierra since. I under stand they make a good bullet for hunting now. I always used them for benchrest 100 to 1000yds but never after again for hunting. Weatherby always used partition bullets and I figured the knew what they were doing. 340, 270 and 257 all were outstanding rifles that they made and new they cost me about $368 new with a 26 in barrel. I bought the 340 for bear, but my friend were getting one shot kills with a 30-06(165gr. Barnes all copper) I think thats the way to go because you get a better BC in a 130gr. 270WSW than a 150gr.

John white
I'm now interested in trying the

Jim in Mo.

Clay,
Why you dumpin' on Shaky? As far as I'm concerned the 338/06 is no longer a wildcat. Weatherby picked it up and SAAMI approved so whats the deal?

Shaky

Clay, old buddy, the 25/06, 22/250, 35 Whelen, 7/08, .243, .244,.358, and a half dozen more standard calibers were wildcats at one time, but are no longer. The criteria we use for designating a wildcat is that SAAMI has not recognized a standard measurment and pressure limit. Presented to SAAMI in 1998 by A-Square, SAAMI issued standard measurements and a pressure level of 53000lb, thereby legitimizing the .338/06-A-Square. My old .338/06 was built on a 98 Mouser action and was a wildcat, a bit short to seat the bullets where I wanted them. This one is built on a 700 Rem., chambered A-Square,STANDARD, not a wildcat.

sarg

WamtnHunter, no doubt a large exit or entrance will bring down a nd bleed out an animal for a kill, some how I never figured on an animal to bleed out except when bow hunting. I am probable old fashioned in my beliefs but I grew up with the old writes who always tried to do the damage inside the carcus. I,ve always was taught the bullet should enter, expand to twice its size, retain it's mas and then we always did out the slug and compare to last shot. I know that the way a bullet performs depend on where it hit,s Thats why placement is important to the performanceof the slug. This year I loaded some 150gr. ,.308 round nose bullets for the .308 Win. I took a nice doe with one hitting high on the back. Deer did not run, but I was not really pleased with the large exit wound.. I wish I had hit lower so I could actually see what the bullet was capable of. Clay told me to try 130gr. this year and I believe at the range and all, this would do great. I've never hunted Elk or bear, had I done so I might change my feeling on exit wounds and larger bullets.
I wouldn't hesitate to use a .338 , or 7mm08 on deer or lrger animals like where you live and hunt, still believe in bullet placement. You have a good day..

Mark-1

I’m very careful when I use “hollow points”. Some are designed for varmints. Others are designed for big game hunting then there are those for targets. It sounds as if the fellow having problems with serrias for hunting was using Match King target bullets for hunting. Attention to detail! Attention to detail!

I’ve had extremely good hunting with Serria Game King bullets over the years in 140-grain 7mm’s and 225-grain 35-caliber.

Bubba

When I started reloading back in the early 70's, Hornady was a superb paper puncher. The "boys" that were serious about killing game used "Sierra" almost exclusively. Of course you had the guys that thought if it wasn't "Silver Tip", you were just wasting time!
My caliber of choice is the .270 Win. I've tried lots of different bullets from 90 grain HP's to 160 Nosler Partitions! After much trial and error, I shoot the Sierra 130 gr BTSP and approximate factory loadings! A well placed shot may not drop a deer in it's tracks, but if you go to where they were standing when you fired, normally you can see them from there! I don't mind a 40 yard tracking job!

Bubba

Clay Cooper

Hey Shaky Sir you got me thinking on this. I was thinking along the line that a Leopard didn’t lose its spots. Instead what I realize what you’re saying is that Wildcats get Citizenships too!
Ok, I’ll buy that! By the way here is some info on SAAMI.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sporting_Arms_and_Ammunition_Manufacturers%27_Institute
SAAMI was founded in 1926 at the behest of the US government, with a charter to create standards, coordinate technical data, and promote firearms safety.[1] For example, they publish a list of Unsafe Arms and Ammunition Combinations which details situations where a smaller cartridge may fit in a firearms designed for a larger cartridge, but would be unsafe to use.[2] For example a .44 Magnum cartridge will chamber in a .45 Colt firearm but operates at a higher pressure and would be unsafe. SAAMI is an accredited standards developer for the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

sarg

Rockymtnhunter, I once had a 336 in .35Rem. loved the gun, Had very pretty wood and shot great, but I only wanted one gun to hunt deer so I sold it and bought my Rem.700. I should have kept the 336 and still bought the Rem. which I could have,but just wasn't thinking. I would load 158gr. ,357 bullets in the 336, shot good with these also. I like the Rem much better. I was at (Yes, Walmart ) Walmart looking at guns again this afternoon in Ashland, Still dont like the new 700 ADL, Well I'm thinking about bed, going to get up tomorrow and go to the Armory, the Boys are in now but leave for WI. Monday for a couple weeks before going to #[email protected]^%&*(*^$ For a year. sure going to miss the guys being a small town....

GREG

Hell you guys know more about calibers ,powder loads, yadda, yadda, yadda> I have learned so much from yall you are going to get me into massive trouble on the home front! I now want different calibers for comparison just to play with instead of utilitarian guns for the purpose of puttin meat in the freezer!Mr. Petzal I will hold you personally responsible for the repercussions. I may even give the Lady of the house the blog to let her tell you, If we can still afford it after my first .338! so beware!!LOL

GREG

Hell there has to be another drunk bastard out there, come on!

GREG

Oh I dont sleep much.

Blue Ox

Morning, GREG!
There's time enough for sleep in the grave.

sarg

Mark1, you are absolutly correct about hollow point bullets, take the 168gr hpbt in .308, should never be used on larger game. The expansion in not right for a proper kill. (Here we go again). as Clay can verify, they are great at target out to 600 or 1000 yds. People should really consider the game when selecting bullet type.

Rocky Mtn Hunter

Sarg: After I saw the new Remington 770 and 715 which replaced the 710 I was sick. I called Remington and gave them my 2 cens worth ( what good , other than to me). They informed me that the ADL is yet available , but only to Walnart stores. So the ADL you saw is a hunk of junk compared to the older ADL's. In my opinion, this new MArlin XL7 will eat Rem. alive on cheaper priced firearms. If Rem. starts mfgering the BDL and CDL as they did the 770 and ADL for Walmart;s then our other US mfgers will make great enrows in sales. The New Savages are much improved in looks. I always thought they had quality for the $$ now they got the quality and the beauty. They got one model that is Walnut and looks like the Rem 700 BDL at about 30% less than the BDL. I do have a KL7 Marlin on order in 270, but dealers tell me they got so many back-orders it may take a yr to fill the demand. Also, Remington has come out with a new trigger, and will retro-fit the present 700's we got, but cost is about 100 bucks, and they in short supply as well.My CDL is at 4 lbs, and it's fine for me hunting, but I would like 2 l/2lbs for bench pratice. O well, will put 3 shots in a 2" spread at 200 yds and thats good enough so far.I got a Custom Built Mauser in 30-06 with 12oz pull, much too light for hunting, ok on bench, but I;m afraid to go hunting with it for that reason, plus its my show and tell gun and prefer to not scratch it up.Some excuse, but kinda figure my estate will be worth a tad more some day, as appears I;m gonna spend all my cash on hunting and firearms. Now,wonder what I will see I gotta have after the XL7 arrives. Another advantage for a new firearm with me is, I always kill game on the first hunt I go on with a new gun. On this 700 CDL in 06, it has been used to shoot at animals 5 times, and 5 kills , all one shot.The Old Southern Gun Slinger:::: Hey, Sarg. got my Applications in the mail, now a waiting game for about 2 months.I;m gonna E-mail you in a nite or so, need more info from you, OK. Take care.Shoot-um-straight and often.

sarg

Way to go RockyMtnHunter , Let me know in May how it goes, we'll look at some motels around Pikeville,or Prestonsburg.. Depend which zone you drae.

Jim in Mo.

Western big game hunters,
Is this really good news? I've got my doubts.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080303/ap_on_sc/pronghorn_wolves;_ylt=Alisggb6yT0jCmUAMaUJUQSs0NUE

Jim in Mo.

Something went wrong

Jim in Mo.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080303/ap_on_sc/pronghorn_wolves;_ylt=Alisggb6yT0jCmUAMaUJUQSs0NUE




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