Planning to build a new rifle - starting with a Kreiger 26", 5R, 9" twist. Want to shoot 160gr bullets 3000+ fps. Question is, of the following, which will provide both the results as well as reasonable barrel life?
A 7wsm prolly will too. But I'm told barrel life is better with a RM over a WSM.
Just like a engine, the faster you go the more it costs in every department, wear & tear, fueling it, etc.
Barrel life should be at least 1200 rounds in a 7mmRM if you shoot slow and keep the barrel clean and don't get it hot.
7 RUM barrel life is just stupid. STW not really any better.
If I wanted to shoot 160's @ 3000 and get all the barrel life I could, I'd go 280 Ackley. Sierra list max loads in a 26" barrel at 2950fps, and I find the Sierra load manual to be a little conservative on the top end. the 280 Ackley is pretty common, loading dies are available off the shelf. It's the fastest non magnum 7mm.
On your list of cartridges, the 280 Ackley Improved would fit between .284 Win & 7Wsm.
The more powder you burn per shot, the more barrel you burn per shot.
What are you after? If your looking to do long range hunting per this website, you'd be better off to use the heaviest 7mm bullets as they would be more forgiving in cross winds & have more down range energy...
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I routinely have shots at whitetails from 300 -500yds. I assume this qualifies as long range hunting? My goal, perhaps like some others, is to spit something downrange that doesnt create the need for a lot of elevation correction and will still deliver the goods without knocking me out the tree. As you made comment, barrel life with the hot mags is stupid. Breaks my heart to spend that much on a premium barrel and trash it in a short time. Appreciate the feedback, will look into it.
.280 Remington with .160's offers terminal ballistics more than adequate at 500 yards for Whitetails or Mulies. Why not go with something that offers readily available ammo, and modest recoil in an easy to load proven performer? Velocities aren't quite up to what you are looking for, but they are close. The 7MM Rem Mag fills all your expectations with just a little more recoil.
300-500 yard deer with minimal elevation correction. Get a 257 wby shooting 100 grain bullets 3750 fps. You can zero it for minimal elevation adjustment to 500 yards. Nearly point blank but not quite. Most deer will drop in their tracks. Also minimal recoil next to the 7mm's with 160's. It is about the best there is over the counter for this purpose. I have way over a hundred rifles to choose from. Aks my son which is best for your purpose with minimal recoil. He shoots the 257 wby exclusively.
Predictions are difficult, especially when they involve the future
The 115 gr Nosler ballistic tip comes out of the barrel about 200 fps slower than the 100, but is essentially as flat as the 100 with 200 ft lbs more terminal energy (about the same as the .280) The 160 gr .280 round will drop 42 inches vs the .257 115 gr at 30 inches with a 200 yard zero.
If you are a Weatherby guy the .257 is a great choice- but for deer I much prefer the heavier bullet.
long time long ranger said that one well, a 257 wby with a medium contour barrel and decent optics, 8-9 pounds, mine is a little over 9, but it feels like my 243, the first deer I took with that rifle was 268yrds and i was sighted 1" high at 100, 100grn hornady spire, that thing folded up like a book. They are quite a bit of an overbore but they are not that hard on barrels unless you get um heated, dont shoot anymore than 3-4 rounds without any cool down, they will last well beyond 1000 rounds if you do that. If not a regular 7mm rem mag with a 10 twist is all you will ever need for anything under 170 grains. comparitively the 162 grn sst interlock will give you the most terminal energy with its .550 bc it will still have about 1015ftlbs at 900yrds with 3000fps mv.