I have built several 338-378wby imp rifles in a very light, 8# class, it dont kick much at all. 338LM is basicly the same thing. My 338 snipe-tac rifles (338-408C-T), in 14-16# range kick like a 300win mag with no brake, now that with the same 300mk bullet at speeds 3400fps. Your 338LM will be around 2800fps with same bullet. I use a similar brake style on my rifles, an improved Holland, no top holes. 3 to 4 expansion chambers for more gas release. A heavier gun somtimes will have more push recoil, it is harder to stop a heavy mass once it starts to move, a lighter rifle will stop faster and feel like its moving forward some, less felt recoil.
Srhaggerty, sounds like your getting ready to have some fun. If your not worried about weight and your going to be driving and setting up on a spot, I would go with something around 25 to 30 pounds. Also, if your going with the 338 Lupa Mag, I would suggest an improved version. You will get more velocity with the Improved version of the 338 Lupa Magnum. I am having a 338 Lupa Magnum Improved built right now, It's called the 338 Yogi. With the improved 338 LM, you will be able to push the 300grn MK at around 3000 to 3100 fps. Here are some more 338 Improved verions, Kirby Allen designed the 338 Kubla Khan which is a 378 Weatherby Mag necked down to 338, and Improved. The Kubla Khan performance and velocity are better than the 338 LM or 338 LM improved version. Shawn Carlock designed the 338 Edge which is a 300 Remington Ultra Mag necked up to 338. Performance is pretty much the same as the 338 Lupa Mag.
Regarding barrel, I would go with a Lilja. I've read and heard they work well with the larger caliber bullets. Go with a 32" barrel, 1-10 twist, and go with a diameter of 1.350 tapered to 1.100, or larger. I am using a Lilja on my 338 Allen mag, it will be 32" long, 1-10 twist, 1.350 tapered to 1.250.
Regarding Trigger-This is easy-go with the Jewel Trigger.
Stock-McMillan, they are worth the wait. If you want a benchrest type stock, go with a Tooley MBR. If you want more of a hunting or tactical model, go with the HTG or an A-5.
Action-Great choice, the Lawtons are sounding and performing awesome. I am using the Lawton M8000 for my 338 Allen Mag. It is being built by Kirby Allen, a.k.a Fiftydriver.
Gunsmith- I would recommend the gunsmiths on this site such as Kirby Allen or Shawn Carlock. I am having Kirby Allen Build my 338 Allen Mag, his customer service has been outstanding and his rilfes are receiving awesome reviews from their owners. From now on, Kirby will build all of my custom rigs. Shawn Carlock will be doing my coating on my 338 Allen Mag, his customer service has been excellent too!!
Scope-Easy go with Nightforce 5.5x22x56 NXS.
I can't wait to see the pics and hear how she shoots, once you get her. Good luck with your decision, and have fun.
I would have to agree with SR90, How do you get a 5.5 lb barrel that has a 1.4" shank and a 1.1" muzzle diameter. Is this an ABS barrel? Even that seems very light for an ABS.
I ran the numbers for my Lilja 32". It starts with a 1.350" barrel shank that is 6" long and then straight taper to 1.1" at the muzzle. IT has HUGE 7/16" wide flutes that are 0.200" deep and it still pushes the scale to a bit over 7.5 lbs.
Just curious what barrel you are using to get a 5.5 lb barrel weight?
Allen Precision Shooting
Home of the Allen Magnum, Allen Xpress and Allen Tactical Wildcats and the Painkiller Muzzle brakes.
In Idaho's infinite wisdom they limit you to 16#. Even still I was thinking a 12 or 13# rig anyway.
I want to stick with the LM cartridge. All the other rounds you've listed, I have given much thought to. But as Kirby knows I have a hidden agenda. I already own a 277 AM, which as many know is based on the 338 LM case.
After chatiting with Kirby some yesterday and thinking some things over. I like the idea of a Lawton barrel. I was thinking in the range of 30".
I will be going with the Rifle Basix trigger. I loved the one Kirby had put on my 25-284.
As for the stock I had 2 thoughts on that. I want the A-5. I like the HTG as well. But I liked the Manner Tactical stock with the thumb hole.
As for the scope. I was thinking an IOR 6-24 or 9-36. Base and rings will be Seekins Precision.
The last carbon bbl i recieved was 1.400 breech, M24 taper 33" muzzle, 1" It weighed 5.7# If you make it 1.350 and taper it to .950 muzzle, 32" you will loose some more weight. Yes the same size bbl in all steel would be around 10# i assume. I just recieved one from Mike Rock, 32" 1.400 breech,tapers to 1.140 has a Navy taper of some kind, .945 at the muzzle, the customer wanted it light, it has six heavy flutes. It weighs in at 6# with muzzle brake.
The carbon winding removes about 40% of the weight, but the larger the bbl dia in relation to steel, the percentage goes up rather fast. I talked with Mike D. the other day and he said the 1.400 breech with a straight taper to 1.100 at the muzzle only adds 5-7 ounces to the M24 type taper. I would think a steel bbl with that contour could be 12# or more, same thing in Carbon is around 6#. He calls it a truck axel. I have two of these on order for customers. I can post the exact weight when they come in next week.
Here is pic of the lighter steel bbl on the 338snipe-tac.
They are claiming twice the bbl life from the carbon ABS bbls, he also said, that when your done with it, there is enough materail left to rebore and rifle up to the next caliber size for a minimal fee.