22" or 24" Barrel .300 Win Mag

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by fatpete, Jan 28, 2011.

  1. fatpete

    fatpete Member

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    Newbie question-

    I am having a rifle built and am torn between getting a 22" or 24" barrel, the action will be .300 Win Mag. I am leaning towards the 22, as I will be using this gun for backpack hunting and would like the shorter length.

    My question is this: How will the shorter barrel affect the ballistics? I notice that most calculations from the ammo manufacturers and on the Zeiss ballistic calculator site are based on a 24.

    An important side note- I won't be using this rifle for shooting over 600 yards (unless I get a hell of a lot of practice in.....). I also will only be using factory ammo, as I do not reload.

    Thank you for any guidance or ideas. This site has been a tremedous help.
     
  2. liltank

    liltank Well-Known Member

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    I was told by very seasoned shooter in both .308 and 300WM (should be a hint as to what he did) said 26" is by far the best length for 300WM. But if you want a short barrel, I wouldn't go any shorter than 24" w/o changing caliber to a 300WSM.

    Tank
     

  3. budlight

    budlight Well-Known Member

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    Hello Fellow Nevadian! The generality you hear are numbers like 25 - 50 feet per second per inch of barrel length from 20 - 28 inches. All rifle loads on FPS are also genralities that would require actual chronograph time with you particular combo.

    I've humped some Nevada mountains with big barrels with over 20 pound rifles. you can go with a smaller contour barrel and the difference in weight between a 22 and 26 inch is negligable. or even 28 with a brake.

    Personally i don't shoot super ranges or at moving animals because the possibility of wounding and loosing them goes up exponentially.

    but I believe that longer barrels are easier to hold steady and the added FPS and less muzzle blast is a plus. You only need a short barrel for thick brush and dangerous game! LOL
     
  4. 375fan

    375fan Well-Known Member

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    I would recommend the 24" barrel so as to get the most from your 300wm. If your using the same contour for a 24 or 22in, that 2 inches is not but a few ounces at most in weight.
    I have 2 300wm one with 24"barrel, the other 25". Wouldn't think that 1 inch difference in length would have much effect on velocity but it does, chronograph shows that fact.
     
  5. fatpete

    fatpete Member

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    Thank you guys for the advice. I am going to go with the 24" barrel. Another thing that a buddy told me was "If 24 is unbearable, you can always have it cut down to 22. You can't add material if you find that the 22 is too short."
    Thanks again and have a great day,
    fatpete
     
  6. cyrekzz

    cyrekzz New Member

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    also - what twist rate are you going to go with? The more twist with the shorter barrel - you'll be able to stabilize the bullet better. Like 1:10 would be good for your 24" - you'll just loose a little velocity than say a 26" barrel with the same twist.
     
  7. budlight

    budlight Well-Known Member

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    Hey do you ever shoot out at the Washoe range? You could apply the same logic to a 26 inch if you don't like it make it 24. LOL
     
  8. jack1k

    jack1k Active Member

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    I do a lot of long range shooting, and a 300 Win mag should have at least 26" barrel. Shooting anything less, you only need a 30-06. Not a lot of difference except more recoil. A Win .300
    WSM will do very well with a 24" barrel.

    jack1k
     
  9. Moman

    Moman Well-Known Member

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    It sounds like you're set on the 24" and I think that makes a lot more sense than the 22". I have had three 300 wm's and have shot many rounds through them. They were a 24", 25", and a 26". By far my favorite for all around packing and carrying all day, while keeping up good velocity has been the current 25" Broughton bbl. Just for reference I shoot a 180 AB at 3050 with a max load of H-1000. Best of luck with your choice.
     
  10. johnnyk

    johnnyk Well-Known Member

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    I agree with jack1k on this one. I see no reason to go shorter than 26" for the .300WinMag. The difference is mere ounces.
    If you truly want to drop the weight, go with a "Mountain Rifle" profile, short action, 24" lite contour barrel and synthetic stock, caliber .300WSM. JohnnyK.
     
  11. load

    load Well-Known Member

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    i have a 300wm in 24" and wish i would have gone with the 26 for the extra 80 to 100 fps. I am happy however with the 24 (most velocities from manufacturers in this cal are with a 24) if you want a 22 i'd go with a 30/06
     
  12. trueblue

    trueblue Well-Known Member

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    My 300 WM has a 24" barrel and shoots the 190gr Bergers at 3030fps. with Retumbo.