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338 win mag vs. 375 H&H

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 17:22
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I've done a search and can't find a real comparison of the 338 win mag and the 375 H&H in a sporter weight rifle.  I'm thinking something with a 24-26" barrel and weight unscoped and unloaded around 8#'s.  Set aside the heavy barreled, 9# African versions for this comparison (unless you're convinced otherwise).  Also set aside the excellent new 375 RCM and other calibers - I'm interested in history.  I'm counting on a heavier, larger magnification scope to add additional weight to help with recoil. 

Remington, Sako, Savage, Browning and others all offer these calibers in what you'd call sporter weight rifles.  In fact I was surprised at the number of 375 H&H's in these rifles thinking that most would only be available in 'African' set-ups with open sights, low-powered scopes, etc. 

My main question (concern) is an assessment of recoil, comparing the two and perhaps with smaller rounds.  I'm not experienced with either round but have read/heard the usual commentary of the 338 'hit' versus the 375 H&H big 'push'.  I'm wondering if two identical rifles (including weight) chambered in each caliber would have different felt recoils firing identically weighted bullets.  There seems to be some overlapping around the 260-275 grain bullet size.  I'm thinking the H&H would be heavier just looking at energy calculations.

Here's a few rifles I have in mind.  They're all in the 8# weight class.  The first is a Sako Kodiak with a 21 1/4" barrel, shorter than what I had in mind.  The second is a Dakota 97 with a 24" barrel.  The third is a Sako 85 with a 24 3/8"barrel - I'd prefer it without the open sights.  The fourth is a Remington 700 XCR - the 338 has a 26 clean barrel, the 375 a 24" with irons.  There are lots of others but these represent what I'm thinking.

Thanks,
Timber







Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 17:38
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What do you want to use the rifle for, Timber?  Those are all very fine rifles you're considering, BTW!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 17:41
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I have a Remington M700 Classic in .375 and the recoil is similar to my friends .338 M70 Super. Both recoil more than the .300 mags in similar guns by a good margin. Of course the 300 and 250 grain bullets make a difference there. My gun is a little over 9 lbs with scope and it is not a bench rest gun, for sure. I sight it in periodically and test loads.
Mine is probably an African set up but is suitable for any shot I'll ever take at big game up to 300 yds.
I like all of your choices in either of the calibers. If Africa is on the menu I would look at the .375, though.
Here it is with a Kahles 1.1-24 in Talley QD's. Sorry if I bored you regulars with this.




Edited by tahqua - July/13/2008 at 17:54
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 17:55
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As Doug mentioned, if Africa is on the menu, the .375 will be more effective for the larger African game.  Plus, I could be mistaken, but I believe I read something to the effect that the laws in certain regions spell out .375 as the minimum legal caliber for dangerous game.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 17:59
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Alaska.  At this point Africa is but a dream.  But maybe someday.  It'd be nice to have one that would work for both.  Please comment more about recoil.  Thanks.

Edited for spelling.


Edited by timber - July/13/2008 at 18:00
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 18:01
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Also, I had a fixed 4X on it for years. That scope was actually quite a bit lighter than the Kahles and I can't tell a difference in recoil. I have yet to take an animal with the new scope on it.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 18:03
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I'm trying to get a fix on recoil.  I have some experience with 300 win mags and 300 Weatherby's.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 18:08
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You wouldn't be undergunned with either in Alaska.  I can't recall noticing a big difference in recoil between a .338 and .375, both loaded with 250 + grain bullets and shot out of similar weight rifles with similar recoil pads.  One thing to consider is the fact the Sakos have fairly hard rubber recoil pads, so if you go with one of them, you may elect to change out the recoil pad, which on the Sakos are glued and pinned in place, not screwed to the stock.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 18:08
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Here is a range report I did a while back. I also mention a Leupold 1.5-5 I had on it for a short time. http://www.opticstalk.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=10149&PN=1
I shoot a Remington Custom KS in 7mm RM that comes in under 7 lbs without glass. It is approximately a lb lighter than the .375 and they both have fairly heavy Kahles scopes. For comparison, the 7 mag is a puppy and I can shoot 20 rounds, no problem. From my .375 post you can see that 15 rounds from that H&H hurts and disrupted my shooting.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 18:14
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Originally posted by timber timber wrote:

I'm trying to get a fix on recoil.  I have some experience with 300 win mags and 300 Weatherby's.


I have had shot a LazerMark in .300 Wby during a same range session. This is anecdotal at best, the H&H definitely kicks more than the Wby. The Wby is also heavier recoiling than my 7 mag I mentioned. The Wby has a lot of muzzle blast that adds some bang to the fun, too.
I have shot all three at the same session.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 18:19
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If your main issue is recoil and you have a fair amount of time behind a 300Win mag I don't think you will find the 338 a big deal.  I cannot compare to the 375 H&H cause I have only shot 375 in a RUM.
 
THE 338 I have shot is in a Savage 116 with synthetic stock. I really don't find it a problem at all.  A typical bench session would be at least 20 rounds and it is fine.
 
As to which calibre is the better choice for Alaska I'll leave that discussion up to our members with more experience in DGR hunting.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 18:27
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I was more annoyed with the noise (even with protection of course) of the 300 Wby than the recoil.  But 20 at the bench was enough recoil for one session.

A 338 Savage is a good comparison as I think it'd have a similar weight of those I mentioned.  You're thinking it's maybe a little heavier kicking than a 300 win mag?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 20:13
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I have a 338 and have shot a buddy's 375 on the same range day. My 338 is a Wby Vanguard in a B&C medalist stock  w/pachmyr decelator and  topped with a 4200 2.5-10 . The 375 I shot was a Win 70 sporter with a Limbsaver installed and a Leupold 1.5-5 ( maybe a half a pound heavier that the 338) . Firing both while standing wasn't a problem, even kinda fun . I was shooting 250gr Fed'l hi energy fodder in the 338 Win mag, and in the 375 H&H --270 gr Hornady heavy mag . At the bench, the recoil difference showed itself. It wasn't untolerable , but certainly there..
It's a tough call for Alaskan game , either will get'r done with the right load. For me, to do it all over again-I'd  would have got a 375 , could possibly still do it, if for no other reason that to have a rifle just that much bigger than a 30 cal.
That being said, for shots under 200 yd.s I wouldn't feel under gunned with a 45/70 either and the right load.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 21:11
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if you place the first shot correctly either one will work just fine, im a chicken sh*t, so i would error on the side of caution and vote for the .375 for extra oomph
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 21:38
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I see what you mean, a 375 is a bigger step up from a 30 caliber than a 338.  My 30 is a 30-06.  Ballistic tables out to about 300 yards are surprisingly similar for the 30-06 and 375.

With legal limitations of the 338 in parts of Africa if I thought I could master a 375 for some longer shots (without undue attention to recoil) I'd choose that over the 338.  But a 338 may be more adaptable to longer range shooting in a sporter weight rifle.




Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 21:41
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with a 270gr .375 and a .338 250gr, out to 400yds there really isnt a lot of difference in speed or energy, after 400yds the .338 starts to pull away

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 21:49
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Hey pyro6999.  I know what you're saying, the 338's b/c's give it better long-range ballistics and energy.  But I'm a very average shooter and long range for me is 300 yards.  Would that change your opinion?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 21:54
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Originally posted by timber timber wrote:

I see what you mean, a 375 is a bigger step up from a 30 caliber than a 338.  My 30 is a 30-06.  Ballistic tables out to about 300 yards are surprisingly similar for the 30-06 and 375.

With legal limitations of the 338 in parts of Africa if I thought I could master a 375 for some longer shots (without undue attention to recoil) I'd choose that over the 338.  But a 338 may be more adaptable to longer range shooting in a sporter weight rifle.






There isn't a whole lot of difference in trajectory if you take a look. I think they are both good 300 yard guns for large non-dangerous game. An inch or three in long range trajectory doesn't amount to a whole lot in a chest the size of an elk or moose. I have shot at these ranges on the B-8 and 1.5 moa is not a problem. On a good day it's better.



Edited by tahqua - July/13/2008 at 21:54
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 22:03
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So you're thinking any accuracy I might suffer from shooting the heavier recoiling 375 over the 338 is no big deal?  And therefore the benefits of a 375 at closer ranges makes it a better choice?

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 22:16
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I think they are both accurate for their intended purpose of large game and the recoil won't make much difference in your accurate shooting of them. The .375 300 grain will penetrate better than a 250 gr .338 if the bullets are of equal construction. The difference isn't as much as we might think, though. The .338 has, in fact, been used on cape buffalo where legal with decent results. The .375 is the legal minimum in Africa for dangerous game in several countries being the big difference.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/13/2008 at 22:39
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Okay, the 338 is probably easier to shoot and be accurate with, even under 300 yards, but it's not a big difference.  And the 338 is enough for N. America.  I could always get a 375 later if I needed it.  My brain is telling me to get a 338 but my heart is saying 375.

BTW, would you take walnut to Alaska?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/14/2008 at 03:28
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/14/2008 at 07:00
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Generally speaking the 375 is a superbly accurate caliber. It certainly is the best all round African caliber.
The 338 in turn does not have a good name in South African hunting circles, mainly as a result of excessive meat damage.
My vote would go for the 375 H&H.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/14/2008 at 07:11
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Can't go wrong with either, do what your heart tells you.  I would take a wood stocked rifle to Alaska although hard to argue with synthetic for poor weather.  My rifles aren't abused but they are tools and not treated like holy relics.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: July/14/2008 at 07:57
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I like the 375, although my preference is for the 338. I'm not sure that the 375 is really needed for N American game. I concur that there really isn't alot of difference between the two though. Both can be loaded up or down for nearly any large or dangerous game.
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