Yup, you've givin' me something to think about alright! What yer doing is overloading my small brain with too many options!!!
I'm 5' 11" and about 235 and haven't ever really used a dedicated recoil pad aside from what came with the firearm (i *think* i had something on my 1st .300 Win, it's been a long time...). Ya, i agree that good, *solid* shoulder-placement is a necessity and not just for recoil, but for accuracy as well (consistency, consistency, consistency).
I know from taking whitetails that i've never felt anything when shooting game, but the day on the range with the .338Win was pretty 'impacting'.
Here we go again - .300Win or .300RUM or .300Win or .300RUM or .300Win or .300RUM or .300Win or .300RUM or .300Win or .300RUM
- Aha, maybe a .30-.378 Weatherby?!?