Best short barrel long range calibre?

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by Topshot, Jun 18, 2011.

  1. Topshot

    Topshot Well-Known Member

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    Looking at barrel lengths from 24" to 26" maximum. (not including brake)

    What would you say was the best calibre choice for long range hunting of large game?

    Ease of obtaining components like brass cases would be a major consideration.
     
  2. angus-5024

    angus-5024 Well-Known Member

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    if your thinking 26+brake then you have all of the rum's an the big mags. If your thinking unbraked at 24" then I would say either 300WSM or 7WSM. I've heard that the .338 NORMA does well in short barrels but dont know. really though, most rounds will do fine with 26" of burn.
     

  3. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

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    I would disagree with 26" barrels for a RUM size cartridge. The RUMs are better in 28"+ (heck, my 300RUM has a 32" barrel!!)

    The 'standard' magnums, like the 300winmag, do well in 26". I do agree that the WSM cartridges would do well in a 26" barrel.
     
  4. Mikecr

    Mikecr Well-Known Member

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    The problem with a ton of very slow powder in a short barrel, is that a significant amount of that powder will not burn INSIDE the bore. It just creates a helluva fireball off the muzzle that hurts accuracy like a bad crown.
    Does it really make sense to use a short barrel for 'long range hunting of LARGE game'?
    Not to me.
    The best/extreme example of what I'm talking about is with a barrett light 50. Don't take long with one of these to declare it the worlds most inaccurate LR gun!
     
  5. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

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  6. angus-5024

    angus-5024 Well-Known Member

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    my .338RUM has a 26" barrel plus a 1 3/4" brake and I get between 2750 and 2800 fp swith a 300 grain bullet. yes you can go longer and get more speed, but I feel that 26" is fine... though trebark may be right that a 28-32" would be better.
     
  7. highridge1

    highridge1 Well-Known Member

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    I have a 26 inch 338 rum and I like it more than my edge that was 32 with brake. There is only 75 fps difference between these 2 setups to me it's not worth having the clumbersome super long barrel for such a small return.In fact I believe the shorter barrel is going to promote more accuracy because of less barrel whip.The RUM's do excellent in 26 inch barrels !
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2011
  8. Mikecr

    Mikecr Well-Known Member

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    It's a balance, and it isn't about velocity.
    There is less whip with shorter barrels, but higher muzzle pressures.
    This results in a window of best overall performance for different cartridges.
    A window where accuracy is best.

    Otherwise every gun would naturally be built on stiff 22" barrels like the relatively tiny 6ppc.
    But if you built a 6ppc in either 18" or 26" even it would lose competitive performance that you could not recover with load development. It would languish outside it's performance balance.
    Factories sacrifice performance for practicality in field carry. Their accuracy standards are also inline with general masses rather than actual LR hunter needs.
    Same with 'tactical' gunbuilders. The average LE/SWAT sniper use occurs around 80yds, and the last thing they need is to lug around a 'competitive' barrel for this.
    On the flipside, every year I visit the Williamsport WO(1Kyd comp) and see hundreds BR boomers, and I don't see any with stubby barrels. They typically range from 28" to 34".
    NEVER will you see a competitive 1kyd magnum used with a 22" barrel, and it's not because they need velocity. It's because they need bullets cleanly released, and with low ES.
    The only way to get both is to burn as much powder as they can INSIDE the bore.
     
  9. Topshot

    Topshot Well-Known Member

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    This could be a case of the chicken and the egg. But in this case I am designing the rifle to suit my needs and then picking the best cartridge to suit the rifle.
    So the barrel is going to be about 25" plus a brake. I have a Sako action spare and am looking at building a .338 calibre rifle based on the .375 Ruger case.

    The .338 Norma looks interesting but cases are very hard to come by down here. This is not so with .375 Ruger cases as they are plentiful and cheap for some reason.

    Any other ideas? I am open to suggestions.
     
  10. Long Time Long Ranger

    Long Time Long Ranger Well-Known Member

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    My preliminary testing with the 338 sin looked good out of a 24" barrel. 338 Dakota brass to fireform is easy to get and good brass. By this weekend I should have quite a few rounds down the tube. I will post the results. It is an easy fit on standard mag actions with no modifications.
     
  11. djtjr

    djtjr Well-Known Member

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    +1 on the norma great round ESP in a shorter bbl I like it as much if not more than my lapua
    D