Originally Posted by highridge1
The 338 Edge and similar rounds are very tough to beat because within realistic longrangehunting distances they will get the job done with authority. When you starting talking about more power and going past a mile and even 2000 yards I start to think about just having fun and hitting rocks and steel.At those extreme ranges the accuracy isn't good enough with any round to be a serious hunting tool as far as I am concerned.Thats what makes the 338 edge. Ultra ,lapua etc so perfect because within the range I consider workable for hunting accuracy say about a 1600 yard limit those rounds have plenty of power and just make alot of sense.
I can not disagree with what you say but you are missing one aspect about long range shooting and hunting. Yes an Edge will do anything you need to do in ideal conditions, even in not so ideal conditions.
In a 10 mph crosswind the Edge will be pushed around 40" at 1000 yards. Not to darn bad. Thats with a 300 gr Berger loaded to standard 338 Edge/30" barrel velocity of 2850 fps. In a 15 mph wind, it will have 60" of drift at 1000 yards.
Now how difficult is it to tell a 10 mph wind from a 15 mph wind at 1000 yards???? If your off 5 mph in wind estimate your shot will land up to 20" off point of aim IF everything else is perfect which it never will be.
Now a 338 AM in the same conditions will have 31" drift at 1000 yards in 10 mph crosswind. 15 mph will be 47" of drift. Thats roughly 22% less drift then the Edge. That equates into a 22% larger margin of error in your windage estimate at 1000 yards.
Thats just one aspect. We can look at many more. For instance retained energy and velocity at long range. Does the 338 Edge have enough energy, certainly but at higher terminal velocity and energy always produce more consistant bullet performance, especially with long range match bullet designs. The 338 AM will have 2330 fps and just over 3600 ft/lbs of energy at 1000 yards. Compare that to the 338 Edge with 1935 fps and 2490 ft/lbs of energy. Looking at it another way, the 338 AM numbers at 1000 yards are nearly exactly what the standard 338 Edge will get you at 550 yards. Again, not hammering the Edge in any way, I build them 5 to 1 to my 338 AM as they fit most hunters needs much better but there are levels of performance out there that most have no experience with.
Another KEY aspect to responsible big game hunting at long range is getting the bullet down the barrel and to the target big game animal before the animal moves. We all know this is a real possibility and one of the biggest risks to us big game hunters that results in poor hits. The time of flight for the 338 Edge to 1000 yards is 1.278 sec. Again, not bad at all. BUT the 338 AM will cover the same distance in 1.074 sec. Now, 0.200 sec does not seem like alot but if you figure the amount of time it takes a big game animal to take a full step....... Its a LONG TIME when the bullets in the air and the target decides to take a step.
AGAIN, I am a huge fan of the 338 Edge, there is nothing bad you can say about it but most of the time when I hear guys say there is no need for anything larger then the 338 Edge I get the feeling that they have never experienced the next level of performance. All I can say is that until you do experience this level of performance you have no idea what its like. Hell, a quote from my good friend Shawn Carlock who knows a thing or two about the Edge said about the 338 Allen Magnum shooting at 1000 yards, "Its as easy as kicking your best dog!"
Hitting small targets at long range, especially in conditions that you can not peg exactly on is dramatically easier with this level of performance. On paper numbers is one thing, in real life the difference is much more dramatic. I am not saying the 338 AM is better then the 338 Edge, as I mentioned, I recommend and build the 338 Edge 5 to 1 compared to my 338 AM. That is because it DOES fit most hunters needs much better as far as rifle size, cost and just what they need for how they hunt.
My only point being, for special situations, the 338 Edge could be considered marginal, even at ranges of 1000 yards or less.