338 EDGE or 338 Ultra Maxx?? please help

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by gearfoot, Aug 29, 2009.

  1. gearfoot

    gearfoot Member

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    This will probably be along winded post, but here goes. I have lurked here for a long time and am always impressed with how much knowledge everyone has. Please keep in mind, to this point, the farthest I have ever shot is probably 350 yards.

    I got a new 338 Krieger barrel from a pawn shop that has not been fired. It will finish out at 28.5". It's a 1:10 twist #18 light varmint contour.

    First and foremost, money is a major issue with me. Stay at home wife, kids, yadda, yadda, yadda. I have an older Remington 700 300 Win mag with a bent barrel from when my horse fell on it. It's just been sitting in the closet ever since. I'd love to rebarrel to a potent 338 for target shooting and maybe a long range shot at a deer once I got good at shooting.

    I have lurked here a long time and it looks like the cartridges I listed in the title are what would work best since a Lapua won't work too well on a Remington from the sounds of it. I have a good friend who is a hobbyist gunsmith and will help me chamber and accurize for free. I have an older Leupold Mark 4 10x hand-me-down from my father I will use for optics.

    Which chambering would work the best? The 338 Ultra Maxx looks very impressive on paper. Where can we get the reamer for one? Is it worth it to go to the 338 Ultra Maxx over just the Edge? It looks like there are close to 120 fps to be gained in the Ultra Maxx.

    Is there any reason not to use the Ultra Maxx?

    Thanks in advance for any advice.

    Hans
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2009
  2. dogdinger

    dogdinger Writers Guild

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    i am not sure if you mean the ultra mag or maxx? IMO you would be better off going with the remington ultra mag. you do get a litte less case capacity but that wouls be offset by the fact that you could buy factory ammo and dies would be readily available. i just had to fork out 285$ for a set of edge dies. you might consider sending the barrel to one of the smiths here for the chamber job. AJ
     

  3. jmden

    jmden Well-Known Member

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  4. gearfoot

    gearfoot Member

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    Yes. It was the Allen Precision 338 I was referring to. I do hand load a lot for a 223 and my friend has all the reloading stuff I'd ever need so I can reload for the wildcat stuff.

    I did send joecool a PM last night about the 338 Ultra Maxx but I have yet to hear back from him. he will probably be able to help too.

    Thanks.

    Hans.
     
  5. AJ Peacock

    AJ Peacock Well-Known Member

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    Go with either the 338 RUM or the 338Edge. As Dogdinger stated, you can get factory loads for the RUM and the dies are much cheaper. There is around 100fps difference between them. I only heard of one UltraMAXX being built, this would severely complicate getting a reamer and dies.

    Both the RUM and Edge are great long range hammers.

    AJ
     
  6. jmden

    jmden Well-Known Member

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    As I recall from my discussion with joecool, he and Kirby split the cost on the reamer. Not sure where the dies came from. As I understood it, Kirby had the reamer.

    I've heard the 338 'EDGE IMP' guys are say they are getting better case life than the regular 338 EDGE due to different shoulder configuration.

    Edit: The Ultramaxx was near 35 deg shoulder, if I recall correctly. I think Kirby and joecool went with Kirby's standard shoulder angle.

    If I was you, I think it'd be easier and cheaper to go for the 338 EDGE.

    Jon
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2009
  7. Long Time Long Ranger

    Long Time Long Ranger Well-Known Member

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    I can tell you there will not be a 125 fps difference. With a slight increase in powder capacity you should get a slight increase in velocity. I have seen 338 ultramags outshoot 338-300 ultramags just because of a fast barrel or a slow barrel. There is hardly any difference between the two and improving it 5 or so grains of powder is just not going to make that much difference. If velocity is important to someone they need to step up to the 378 or 416 imp case and get a bit more. I would get a 338 ultramag for your action. It will feed better, be cheaper to get set up for reloading, can buy over the counter shells and may be faster than the next guys 338-300 because you may get a fast barrel. In a hunting situation you are just not going to notice any difference.

    Again, here are average velocities fired from many rifles in some of the popular 338's. Anyone can deduct from these that a slight powder gain from improvement is not going to make a new world beater or make that much difference in a hunting situation. All 28" barrels 250 grain bullet; 340 wby six rifles accuracy loads from 3012 fps to 3065 fps. 338 ultramag and 338-300 ultramag over a hundred rifles accuracy loads from 3058 fps to 3145 fps. 338-378 weatherby accuracy loads from 15-20 rifles from 3239 fps to 3351 fps. I can look up loads for many more rifles in my database but I think this a good representation.

    These rifles loads were from 86 grains of powder to 130 grains of powder and look at the results. From a fast 340 to a slow 338-378 there is 174 fps difference. The ultramags and Lapuas and variations of them fall between these two. So there is your velocity spread with the popular 338's. There is no golden bullet. Pick one and have fun with it. When I see these claims of improving a cartridge 5-8 grains and getting huge velocity increases in 338 caliber you see why I just go to the next post. A guy could improve a cartridge and hit on one fast barrel and get glorious results but you have got to look at the averages the next guy might get.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2009
  8. Joel Russo

    Joel Russo Official LRH Sponsor

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    Well said Long Time Long Ranger.
     
  9. yobuck

    yobuck Well-Known Member

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    youve gotten good advise from knowledgable people on the cartridge issue.
    of equal importance is the scope.
    nothing wrong with a 10x leupold, i have several older 12x i still use.
    however you will need at least an elevation target knob if it dosent have one.
    leupold will install them on older scopes.
    best to have both windage and elevation.
    if funds are an issue, you could get by with just elevation and hold over on windage.
     
  10. jmden

    jmden Well-Known Member

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    In conversations with joecool last year, I recall he found a load he liked with the 338 Ultramaxx and the 300 SMK in the 2990's fps. He'd been hoping for about that. 30" barrel, if I recall. Lots of variables, obviously. You could PM him. Good luck.