Best bang for a specialty pistol

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by strictlyRUM, Jul 30, 2006.

  1. strictlyRUM

    strictlyRUM Well-Known Member

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    This question is directed twords Kirby but anyone is welcome to chime in. I am building and XP100 with a barrel from 15-18 inches. It will be mainly for shooting but will find itself hunting and must be practical. I dont want to go over 18 inches total length, dont mind recoil and dont like muzzle breaks on my hunting pistols. Just wondering if anyone had actual real world experience with 6.5s vs 7mm vs 30cal out of a 15-18 inch barrel. I am looking at short mag configuration and would like the ability to shoot an elk at 300 yards given the moons align correctly. I know Kirby has a wealth of knowlege and real experience with these. I just cant settle on one caliber and down the road it may end up a switch barrel setup. But for now I need to know the best use of powder for down range, say 500 plus shooting. Which one would be superior?

    Thanks Jason
     
  2. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    I have been using the 6.5mm WSM for several years in my personal XP-100 and I have never been wanting more but will also say I have only been hunting deer. I have taken several out to 400 yards and a big beyond and everytimes the round and handgun has performed very well.

    Ballistically, I would say the 6.5mm and 7mm will be your best options.

    Recoil wise, if your not using a brake, all three will be a handful in a hunting weight handgun, the two larger calibers may be more then you want to deal with, in fact they may all be more then you want to deal with without a brake.

    The best compromise between the three would be the 7mm WSM. High BC bullets that are still light enough to keep recoil to a somewhat controlable level but with plenty of bullet for big game hunting at longer ranges.

    I am not a 30 cal fan for handguns and long range hunting. First off, recoil can get severe with 180 gr class bullets and the bullet flight drops quickly.

    Personally, If I were building an XP without a brake, I would not go over the 284 case in capacity. Even this round will not be all that easy to shoot unless handgun weight is up there.

    All three will cleanly harvest elk at ranges well past 300 yards with a quality bullet and shot placement so that is not an issue. What is is shootability in my opinion.

    I have a 15" Lilja on my 6.5mm WSM XP and personally prefer that length for a hunting handgun. For a dedicated long range XP, 18" is fine but it is pretty long for a packing handgun.

    Kirby Allen(50)
     

  3. strictlyRUM

    strictlyRUM Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Kirby,
    When I was talking about the brake it was for length purposes. I dont want something stupid long for carrying. I have a 300wsm and a 338-06(both 15 inch) in an encore and cant get speeds up to where I would be in a bolt gun, because of preasure(preasure blows open encores). Neither gun has a brake. Recoil in handguns doesnt really bother me. But I dont go and put 300 rounds through it in one day either. I was leaning more along the burn efficiency for the wsm platform. As well as down range ballistics. I have read some of your posts on the subject and just cant decide. I really like the sounds of the 6.5 but have little experience with wildcats. Is it enough for elk? What kind of vellocities are you getting with what bullets? Do you think you can still get enough out of the 7wsm to be worth it over the 6.5?

    Thanks again,
    Jason
     
  4. Ernie

    Ernie SPONSOR

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    Jason,
    If all you want is elk out to 300 yards, the 284 Win will do the job for you. Mine was a 15.75 inch barrel and it accounted for two bulls and a number of cows from a 150 yards to over 300 yards.
    I pushed 140 grainers @ 2750 FPS. That is the only bullet weight I used for my 284 Win (Partitions or NBT's)
    Personally, since you are considering the WSM's for elk, I would choose the 7WSM over the 6.5WSM, but that is just a preference.
    I have been in a similar place as you are with the encore a number of years ago with a 338WM. It was a learning experience.
     
  5. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    If your looking at efficency you may want to go larger in bore diameter. I have a 338 WSM that will amaze you what it will do in a 15" barrel. I do run her pretty warm but it will get 2950 fps with a 180 gr and break 2750 fps with a 200 gr Ballistic Tip. Only problem, when I had it built I used a 1-12 twist instead of a 1-10.

    This was before I got into building my own.

    With a bore the size of the 338 you can use powders in the Rl-15 burn rate which will really increase velocity potential in a short barrel. Also, larger bores have less baring surface for a given bullet weight compared to smaller calibers of equal bullet weight. This translates into more velocity potential.

    My 338 WSM has a 15" Lilja as well. TO keep things short I would recommend this over a longer pipe and add a Defensive Edge brake to the barrel and you will be happy. My 338 WSM recoild about like a 357 Mag in a large frame revolver, nothing really.

    The 200 gr Ballistic Tip, 210 gr Wildcat, 225 gr Wildcat or 225 gr Accubond would be my first choices for a handgun chambered in 338 WSM.

    Just another option to murky the waters for you /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif!!

    Remember though that all the WSMs will be very hard on XP stocks. They need to be designed specifically for this type of round. I have seen many of wood stock break and even laminated stock will also crack under this work load unless properly modified for just such a chambering.

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  6. Ernie

    Ernie SPONSOR

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    ditto on 50's stock comment. My 7.82 Patriot (slightly larger then the 300 WSM) broke a older H-S center-grip stock and Kirby did some strengthing modifications to my McMillan stock for my 7mm Dakota.
     
  7. strictlyRUM

    strictlyRUM Well-Known Member

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    What contour would you suggest? I might flute it dunno? Just getting ready to order a barrel and dont know what a good end diameter is. I think I am gonna go with the 7mm for now and make a 338 wsm for my encore to see if I like it. Preassures should be a little lower than the 300. I might be able to reach 2800 with 180s dont ya think? Thanks

    Jason
     
  8. ewallace

    ewallace Well-Known Member

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    Why not make it a switch barrel xp-100 and have a choice of what barrel you put on it. You could do a 7mm WSM or 7 STW and a 338 WSM or 338 WM and a 30 WSN or a 300 Weatherby Mag or all of the above on the same action with the same bolt. Just tell your smith you want a switch barrel rig get a barrel vice and action wrench and unbolt one barrel and install another. just a thought /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif
     
  9. strictlyRUM

    strictlyRUM Well-Known Member

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    It will be a switch barrel down the road. I allready have all the stuff for barrel work, I have been making rifles for a while. My problem is I havent actually held a custom XP and I am trying to build one without knowing barrel contour or possible vellocities out of short barrels. I have bitten of a big bite! Nothing new though I am always doing stuff before I know what I am doing.

    Jason
     
  10. ewallace

    ewallace Well-Known Member

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    as for taper it depends on how much weight you want to carry around I like heavy guns so I can use a rifle scope here is a pic of one of my xp's 1.200 HV taper


    [​IMG]
     
  11. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    I would stay away from the WSM case for the encore, you will get excessive frame flexing which can damage your receiver. Been there done that.

    If I were you I would look at the '06 Improved rounds if you want to go with the Encore. Save the hot stuff for the fixed breech XPs.

    Kirby Allen(50)