Re: 300 RUM or 7mm with 180 bergers at 3000 fps
Please don't take offense to this as I respect what you have to say and are a wealth of information on this site.
The new powders of today and barrel advancements have changed what the some of the older cartridges are capable of. For example, if a 7WSM can run a 168 at 3100 in a 26" barrel, which it is easily capable of, then there is no reason that a 7RM can't do the same thing. The WSM does run at higher pressure, but the 7RM has a couple more grains of case capacity and is at a little less pressure. When the 7RM is chambered with the longer VLD's out where they need to be, it turns it into a whole new animal, especially with the new powders out...mainly Retumbo.
The 300RUM is a specialized tool for sure. Using a 210 Berger/300RUM and a 7RM/180 Berger the ballistics are almost identical with the RUM having a few hundred ft/lbs more energy. It does have the edge, but at a cost. There is only one way to build confidence in this sport, which I am sure you will agree. That is to shoot. Practice under field conditions and put in the time. Being limited to one rifle, the 300RUM is definitely not the best choice here. Personally, I would have to rebarrel one 2-3 times a year if it was my only rifle. The 7RM will give guys a chance to shoot alot and build confidence and know EXACTLY what their rifles are capable of. It may be a little light for elk at 1K, but if they know their rifle and are confident in placing the bullet in the right spot, that is what makes the difference. A ****** shot is a ****** shot regardless what the caliber. Elk aren't bullet proof at all. Everything comes down to shot placement and that takes practice. This is a precision sport, plain and simple. If a guy is not confident in their equipement, then honestly, they have no business even pulling the trigger. The ONLY way to gain that confidence to go shoot and proove it to yourselve that you can in fact do it. Yep, the 300RUM does have a slight energy edge over the RM, but it comes at a cost. It takes a longer barrel to perform, more powder, more recoil..... It is still a favorite of mine, but it all comes at a cost. Especially for people that are just getting into the sport and needing that shooting experience.
Guys think they need the biggest cannons out there to do this game and then they think it just comes easily. I am in agreement that if you can handle the horsepower, than use as much as you can control and are comfortable with. In our shooting classes 99% of the people out there don't shoot the big magnums as well as they do a lighter recoiling rifle. They want all the horsepower, but are afraid of the blast, recoil, or whatever it may be. Set them behind a lighter recoiling rifle, and they are hammering the targets at all ranges. I talk to several people a week that think if they get a 300 ultra or 338 Edge that they can shoot 50 rounds a year and be able to kill an elk at 1k or farther. I ask them why they would only shoot that little, and they respond that those big rifles have to much recoil! This just confirms what we have seen in our shooting classes. They are trying to rely on horsepower rather than precision.
Again, I mean no disrespect at all and I hope you didn't take it that way. I am just going off observations as of lately.