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Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics Applied Ballistics



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Unread 03-22-2008, 05:11 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 2,369

I have a brown bear hunt this fall and absolutely positively need a new backup spare rifle (and a spare for that one too).

Doc Ed Harren, being the kind gentleman that he is, has put up with my latest desire to build a lightweight 458 Win Mag.

Today was christening day for the new rifle. I wasn't sure how badly the thing was going to recoil and from the recoil calculators I could find it looked like it might be pretty stout, somewhere between a 12 gauge super magnum load and those images of men shooting the 577 T-Rex.

I figured the rifle would weight about 9lbs (I'm not a fisherman) and get 2000 fps with a 500gr bullet... not too bad but I did happen to notice the stock we had selected has a recoil pad of about the same consistency and density as Vibram shoe soles.

On to the shooting part; the rifle is still in the white and I don't want iron sights (if a bear gets close I'll point shoot, I figure to use the scope at about 15 to 50 yards). We set up an Oehler (wedged it into a handy dead bush) to shoot across so I could calculate recoil and have an idea of load value. Ed (being the gentleman the wiser of us) let me shoot first and offered to leave the immediate area so as not to disturb me in my moment of glory. 1 from-the-hip shot and 9 proper (but crouched to get the rounds over the Oehler) from the shoulder shots later we were done. The rifle works fine, no gigantic fireball, no sights needed for the stump at 15 feet and no detached retina....

I now have a fine big game rifle capable of cleanly harvesting anything from a junk Frigidaire refrigerator to an African elephant.

I believe Ed and I have selected a name for it (the rifle) but I thought I would run it past a few folks here for thoughts on calling it "Ol' Hematoma".

My shoulder is a little sore and my neck is somewhat stiff but I'm good to go I believe.

Oh.. When we got back to Ed's shop we checked the weight on the rifle as I shot it, 7lbs 6oz. 2030fps with a 500 grain bullet over 73 grains of powder = 24fps and 72ft/lbs recoil... I like it.

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Unread 03-22-2008, 05:25 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Buenos Aires, ARGENTINA
Posts: 131

I gone thru the same experience years ago, with my Ruger Nro.1 loaded with 450gr Barnes X and later with a custom CZ 602 in .458 Lott.

After one session I finished with a so much pounded shoulder that I couldn't use the right hand for about a week...

May I suggest a great and cheap solution?

Try a PAST Magnum recoil shield, it really works !!
regards, Gus

LoadBaseŠ Desktop & Mobile editions - the ballistics/reloading software solution
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Unread 03-22-2008, 06:00 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 2,369
The bruise looks much worse than reality, I use it as a sympathy extractor... I may get an extra piece of cake or something (maybe a beer) if my wife falls for the ruse.
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Unread 03-22-2008, 06:05 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Yakima, Washington
Posts: 3,775
I'd say you've picked an appropriate name.

You know, if Ed was any kind of a smith and friend, he'd have volunteered for the multiple shot duties. But my guess is he's been there and done that before and has a good memory.;)

I've shot a 12# 458 and it was not something I'd say was on my list of favorite things to do.

All in all, if it's a charging refridgerator or a charging bear, I think you'll have it covered quite nicely. I agree with the Past for target time but in the field when shooting at a big furry critter you'll never even feel it when it goes off.
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Unread 03-22-2008, 06:51 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Potomac River
Posts: 5,089
Wouldn't it be less painful to just have Eddie weld on a bayonet stud. Also cheaper, emergency room docs charge a lot less for suturing claw and bite wounds than surgeons do for shoulder joint replacements.
The Smokin Fur Rifle Club
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Unread 03-22-2008, 09:01 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 2,598
Dave, is the 73 grains 4895? I had a 45 Win Mag when I live in AK. and my laod was 74 grains of 4895 and Federal 210 primers in Rem. brass with a 500 grain soft for 2110 FPS in a 24" barrel...
range it,check the wind, dial in correction, aim and only one shot
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Unread 03-22-2008, 10:47 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Columbia, MO
Posts: 1,476
Make sure you don't shoot it too much and end up like this:
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