Re: .408 Status???
Just to add some information on this 408 & 50 cal subject.
1. The 408 Is legal in any heavy gun 1000 yard benchrest competitions in the USA that I am aware of. Rules state that a bullet no larger then 40 Cal can be used. There is NO mention of diameter in the rules. A 408 ceases to be a 40 caliber when it reaches 41 cal or .410 Diameter. No different then calling a 308 diameter a 30 caliber
2. We use to have the 50 cal 1000 yard matches at our range in Williamsport until the target frames were torn to pieces and we found bullets in like new condition in empty fields and neighbors yards 1500 yards downrange from the targets. We stopped 50 cal competitions when this happened.
True the record for a 50 was 3.5" then went to 3" but, that is only 5 shot groups.
I have seen the first 5 shots on many targets come back to the target room at Williamsport that measured 1 1/2" the first 5 rounds of a 10 shot string. This can be checked because the targets are all plotted on every shot. These were shot with 30 cals.
As a matter of fact, one of our shooters had a 10 shot group that measured 3" this past match and the first 9 shots were measured at 2" again with a 30 caliber.
At some of the 50 cal matches the guys would try to get good groups with 10 shots and failed measerably and it was credited to the high volumn of powder and of course a rapid heat buildup. The best they could do with good bullets was 15" (plus) groups when they tried 10 shots. Even the "average" 5 shot groups were 11 and 12" and bigger.
I would like to think that the 408 is not hype or BS as I would like to try one and experiment with it. If it didn't pan out, I could always neck the 408 brass down, rebarrel to the 338 diameter and shoot nothing but the 300 Gr MK in it. It would then be just the cost of another new barrel.
I agree that a 2500 yard 1 shot kill without a spotter round or two fired first, would be
an ultimate shot to say the least. It may be able to be done in time but, I question if that time is here NOW with ANY round?
I don't think so but, who knows for sure?
Anyway, if I get the action I want, I will have a 408 to play with before next year rolls around. I sometimes like to experiment with new things.
Good shooting to you and since you don't live too far away and if you want to compete in 1000 yard matches (not with a 50) , come to Williamsport and give it a try. Maybe you already have?
PR and Information Officer
The Original Pennsylvania 1000 Yard Benchrest Club