I'd like to avoid the brake, that's why I limited myself to the 300 Win Mag. Yes, I'll have to reload eventually, but I don't plan on doing it (or shooting to 1000 yards) out the gate. After I get the rifle broken in, probably upgrade the trigger, etc I will think about finding the dollars to get reloading equipment.
Incidentally, what is the barrel life difference between these two?
Thanks guys...I'll probably go with the .308 and was leaning that way before. I'm not worried about the win mag being too much gun, it can't be much worse than a muzzleloader pushing a 250 grain bullet at 2300 fps. Basically I like the thought of cheaper plinking ammo to get used to everything and being able to get more rounds through the gun before my shoulder gets too sore or the barrel too hot.
Looks like I'm in the minority? I'd get the 300, and learn to shoot it, right from the start. Recoil is as much a function of the weight of the rig as it is the powder charge; at least in these two cartridges. Forget the muzzle break, in my opinion. Put some weight in the stock, if you are sensitive. I think time in flight might be a factor, accuracy wise, all things being equal?
Never had a .308, but it's on my list. I have had lots of experience with magnums, and watching hunting clients with magnums. I would strongly suggest starting out with the .308. Most of the shooters I've seen shot much better with the smaller rounds. Most of the newer shooters I've seen armed with magnums "couldn't hit a bull in the butt with a handful of rice". [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img]
here is my opinion regarding starting with rifles with recoil. I have never been one to say "start with this....then go up to something bigger when you get used to it". If you are like many people, you will get a "starter" rifle then sell it to get the better one. I say get the one you should get in the first place then practice with it. handling recoil just requires getting used to it with practice. if you flinch, practice and good advice from your fellow shooters will greatly improve that. the trick here is practice. however if you can't stand the recoil and end up not shooting because of it, well then a powerful recoiling rifle will not likely ever be in your future.
my first heavy recoiling rifle was a 458 win mag. yes it did kick. but after a few shots I knew what to expect and was able to concentrate on my shooting rather than trying to worry too much about that recoil. I now regularly shoot that rifle off the bench, full power loads, and getting a 5/8 group at 100 yards. just took practice and getting used to.
so get the rifle that will get the performance you want and work with it.
300 RUM and a 458 win mag...what more can a man want!