I have a Browning .338 win mag A-Bolt rifle that I would like to make into a long range hunting rifle. Will this make a good long range rifle?
There's no doubt the cartridge will do the job, but I would focus more on the rifle itself. I've owned several Brownings and yes they are nice but to shoot long distances the appeal goes away. I wouldn't feel comfortable shooting any gun unless I could get sub moa, preferably 1/2 moa
I'm sure you'll find out real soon you'll be wanting a heavier barrel, better trigger...etc, but as a starting point just try not to stretch it too far unless you have the load right where it needs to be. Which brings the rifle into question.
Hope my 2 cents helps. Good luck!
My final authority in all matters of faith and practice is the King James Bible. It's still the monarch of books!!
Actually near as I can tell. a better trigger does help accuracy, and so does a stiffer (generally heavier) barrel. Otherwise, bench rest shooters would all shoot sporters. I put a Timney trigger in my Ruger M77mkII and my groups shrank by about 1/2in. A 3 lb trigger is much easier to hit with than a 6.5 lb trigger. That still doesn't make the ruger a tack driver, but it got it under an inch at 100yds with 4 different bullets, as opposed to 1 1/2 to 1 3/4in with the lawsuit proof trigger it came with.
Also, a .338 bullet weighing 225gr. at 2900 fps should be going somewhere between 1200 and 1300 fps at 900yds if its BC is around .420 or so and the alitiude is around 1000 ft. But who hunts elk at 1000 ft? At 9000ft and above, the velocity goes up and the drop decreases due to lower atmospheric pressure. You will get a significantly flatter trajectory from 600 yds on. Check it on a ballistics calculator. Also, the round will hit with at least as much energy as a .357 at the muzzle even at 900yds. If you use a bullet that will still expand at 1200-1300fps, like a Sierra or a Speer, it should do fine on deer and even elk at 800yds. In other words, if you do your job, the Browning .338 will do its job, too.
A trigger does not affect accuracy at all, and my 7mm mag isnt bedded at all, and can hold .25 inch groups at 100 yards... and it holds at the most 5 inch groups at 1000 yards...
Oh really? That's why I shoot a 2 ounce trigger on my three position and airgun. So you're saying that if I bump the trigger up to about 2 pounds I'll still be able to shoot a one hole 10 shot group standing? Also, check the High Power line at Perry. I'd guarantee almost all will have their trigger at the minimum.