338 winmag or Lapua?

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by Northman, Feb 6, 2007.

  1. Northman

    Northman Well-Known Member

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    IF you were to build a rifle, a 1200yard capable rifle, would you either go with the 338 win mag, or the 338 Lapua?

    Considering:
    338 winmag 26" barrel
    225 accubond ~ 2900fps
    250 smk ~ 2800fps

    338 Lapua 26" barrel
    225 accubond ~ 3200fps(?)
    250 smk ~ 3000fps

    One thing I see here, is the Lapua, it does have superior brass, and ballistics, it still is limited by barrel life. The 338winmag, burning 30 grains less powder, should give it considerably longer life. Am I wrong thinking 4000 rounds? Thats more then 2 barrel changes on the bigger 338 Lapua. Wich will save you $600..?

    You will have 10" less wind drift at 1200 yards with the Lapua, compard to the win mag.

    My only grudge against the 338 bore, is lack of cheap plinking ammunition. $1 per round is expensive when you shoot alot!
     
  2. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    4000 rounds is very optimistic for the 338 WM. I think closer to about 1/2 that is more realistic.

    If you can afford the LM, that is a far better 1200 yard cartridge. If you cant, then dont sweat it.

    You are right, the 338 LM brass is phenominal brass and the LR potential of the cartridge is great indeed. Plan on 1200-1500 rounds +/- of good barrel life with the LM in a good SS barrel.
     

  3. D.P.

    D.P. Well-Known Member

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    For a 1200 yard rifle capable of what? for just shooting plinking neither of the two cartridges you mentioned come to mind. If its for hunting the 338 Lapua and 300 Rum
     
  4. screech

    screech Well-Known Member

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    I would go with a 338lapua or edge. I dont care if you want to use it for target practice just expect to be paying more than some cartridges. I got a 338-378imp and you can really tell when you hit a rock at 800yrds. much cooler than the 7mmstw shooting 162gr. amaxes. Although I dont want to try plaing catch with either one. If the big 338 is the one you want buy it. I like the 338win they just aren't my style hence the reason I would go with the lapua.
     
  5. Hired Gun

    Hired Gun Well-Known Member

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    For 1200 yards in a factory cartridge you are forgetting the 338-378Wby. Why not a 300RUM or 300Wby. Both are solid 1200 yard medicine for paper. My 11 pound 300Wby with a brake is almost recoiless and still has 1300 ft pounds of energy at 1000 yards with 200 grain Accubonds. It's within 150 foot pounds of energy the Lapua has with 225 Accubonds. There are a lot more bullet choices for the .308 bores. Brass is a whole lot easier to buy.
     
  6. Northman

    Northman Well-Known Member

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    Allright.. its for hunting. Whats the biggest animal you hunt with a long range rifle? Elk? Moose? Sheep?

    Is a 30. cal enough for the biggest animals you would hunt? Or, where goes the limmit for choosing a 338 over a 30 caliber?

    And I handload!
     
  7. Hired Gun

    Hired Gun Well-Known Member

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    The answer for me is Elk. My rifle is far more capable than I am. Anywhere within my capability to place a killing shot every time the 300Wby or 300RUM are plenty of gun.
     
  8. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    If your intention is to hunt mature elk at ranges out to 1000 yards or more, I recommend a 338 over any smaller caliber simply because of the larger frontal area of the bullet and heavier bullet weigths for added momentum for penetration on these stout critters.

    Will the big 30s do it, easily but if your building a rifle with this use in mind, go big from the start.

    I would also go with the Edge or Lapua over a 338 Win Mag. The win mag is a great round but it is what it is, the smallest of the 338 magnums currently available. Asking it to get you 1200 yard performance is not out of the question, there are just better options to be had out there.

    The 338 Edge and Lapua are ballistically identical. The Edge is easier to fit into conventional facotry receivers, the Lapua has more consistant cases. Still, I have never had a problem using Rem RUM case in my Allen Magnums so I would say it would really come down to what receiver you will be using and then I would select the one that would fit best in that receiver.

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  9. remingtonman_25_06

    remingtonman_25_06 Well-Known Member

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    I 2nd the vote on the 338 EDGE. Its pretty much a Lapua w/out the expensive cases. The 338 Win mag will not give 4000 round of accuracy, maybe at most 2500. WIth a good LR scope and base, you'd have no problems getting to 1000 with a 338 WIn Mag, I believe. They do drop quite a bit. Seems like the biggest bang for the buck is the 338 EDGE.
     
  10. steelhead

    steelhead Well-Known Member

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    I'll also recommend the EDGE or 338/300. For the reasons already stated, plus the cost of brass is $65 per 100 compared to $200 per 100 for the Lapua.
     
  11. uncleB

    uncleB Well-Known Member

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    Norhman,
    If you are set on a 26" barrel your best bet is to go with 338UM. an EDGE or 338 Lapua or 338-378 will not do noticeably better with this short of a barrel. if you were talking 36" it would be a different story.
    UB
     
  12. Wild_Bill

    Wild_Bill Well-Known Member

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    Hi where are you going to get a 338 Win MAg with a 26" heavy barrel i dont know if they are made. If you can get one send it to Kirby or Shawn and get the rifle trued and rechambered to 338 Edge or get any magnum Rem700 and send it to either and have them build a 338 Edge to your required needs and likes. The 338 Edge has a slight advantage over the 300 Ultra and an added advantage of a better barrel life if looked after nearly twice the life.

    If you want a factory rifle get a REm Sendaro II in 300 Ultra Mag and shoot it until the barrel is shot out use 220 or 240gr Sierras ( i would use the 240's if they stabalise) and when the barrel is shot out at around 1000 to 1200 rounds send it to the above gunsmiths and have them true it up bed the action and rebarrel it to 338 Edge. I would also get a Muzzle break fitted straight away as it will help with your long range shooting.

    Cheers Bill
    Australia
     
  13. Northman

    Northman Well-Known Member

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    Just a question here. 338win mag compared to a 338EDGE/lapua.

    At 1200 yards 250 grain sierra.
    Drift Energy

    338 Win: 2800fps 115" 890ft/lbs
    338edge:3000fps 105" 1050ft/lbs

    The 338winmag burns 10-15 grains more powder then the 30-06, (and 10-15 grain less then the super magnums) but its also going down a larger bore. Not doubting any of you who says its shoot out in 2-2500 rounds. Just hard to belive.

    But, is 10" of drift, and 160ft/lbs worth it to go to a super magnum? Would you guys say a 338 win would be a first starter for someone who might get a chance once in a while, to shoot out to 1200 yards, but 90% of the time wont?
     
  14. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    Norhman,

    In most cases the 338 Win Mag will be hard pressed to break 2700 fps with a 250 gr pill.

    The 338 Edge will push over 3000 fps and at times near 3100 fps with that bullet weight so your numbers are a bit closer then I would say they would be in real world comparisions.

    From the numbers I list the comparison looks more like this at 1200 yards with the 250 gr SMK using a BC of .587 as listed by Sierra:

    Energy:
    338 Win Mag........857 ft/lbs
    338 Edge...........1171 ft/lbs

    Drift in 10 mph wind:
    338 Win Mag........118.3"
    338 Edge...........97.8"

    That said, you are correct. The rifle will more then likely be used at much closer ranges. Lets look at 600 yards which is not uncommon for guys on this board.

    Energy at 600 yards:
    338 Win Mag.............1899 ft/lbs
    338 Edge................2597 ft/lbs

    Drift:
    338 Win Mag.............24.7"
    338 Edge................20.3"

    Here I will admit that windage is really pretty much the same basically. But at closer ranges, the big 338 Edge will have an even larger advantage in kenetic energy.

    Now lets look at why the 338 Edge is really superior to the 338 Win Mag, its ability to use the 300 gr SMK!!!

    The Edge will get you 2800-2850 fps with this very large bullet. In the 338 Win Mag it is really not even a viable option in my opinion because velocity will be less then 2500 fps at most. So if we compare the 338 Win Mag loaded with a 250 gr SMK at 2700 fps and the 338 Edge with the 300 gr SMK at 2850 fps, lets see how they compare at 1200 yards:

    Drift:
    338 Win Mag...........118.3"
    338 Edge..............77.2"

    Energy:
    338 Win Mag...........857 ft/lbs
    338 Edge..............1684 ft/lbs

    The comparision become clearer now as to why the Edge is vastly superior when used with the proper bullets for that size of a case. Not only these numbers but if you look at retained velocity, the 338 Win Mag drops under 1500 fps at around 900 yards. I like to use 1500 fps as a standard but proper bullet expansion with these type bullets. The Edge will carry this velocity well past 1200 yards with the 300 gr SMK.

    Really, when using the proper bullet for each design, there is no real comparision between the two. Yes, if you use the best bullet in the smaller round and limit the big round by using that same bullet the comparision is better but not an honest predicition of how the two will perform head to head with their best personalities.

    Just my opinion.

    It would be like comparing my 7mm AM to a 7mm Rem Mag with both loaded with the 160 gr Accubond. Certainly my 7mm AM will have a velocity advantage but down range advantage will not be what one would expect.

    However if you use a 160 gr Accubond in the Rem Mag and the 200 gr ULD RBBT in the 7mm AM, they are not even remotely in the same class of performance.

    Just what I see here. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif

    Good Shooting!!

    Kirby Allen(50)