help! pick cartridge for new rifle...

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by knukhuntr, Apr 13, 2012.

  1. knukhuntr

    knukhuntr Member

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    Hello, This is my first post, hope to get good info/advise!

    Buying new Browning X-Bolt Comp Stalker with Leupy VXII 3-9x40, LOTS of research. This will flank my Rem 700 Mountain in 308 with crappy 3-9x40.

    Need help picking a cartridge. X Bolt to be used for Deer/ Moose / ELK out to 400 yds *personal MAX*; in open prairie for deer, northern canadian mixed forest for Moose / Elk.

    Rifle has to be light / short to carry in nasty bush. I use my 308 for Deer **sucessfully** and will use for Moose / Elk **just starting out** at shorter ranges. Not looking at the std mag's **300WM / 7RM / 338WM** they're too long; 46.75 OAL for the X-Bolt. I don't handload but buy premium factory loads, not worried about obscure loads can stock pile.

    My cartridge preferences for the X bolt, in order with reason:

    1. 300 WSM; similar #'s to 300 WM, great for Deer(150gr) Moose / Elk (180)
    2. 7 WSM; great SD, very flat shooting
    3. 325 WSM: .015 bigger bullet then 300, but little more recoil, big for Deer
    4. 30/06: similar to 308, reach a little further, best ammo selection
    5. 280 REM: similar to 308, flat shooting with good reach

    Any advise ON CARTRIDGE selection would be great! Also, anyone have ejection / feeding problems with X-Bolts in WSM's?

    Thanks,
    kh
     
  2. 270winshort

    270winshort Well-Known Member

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    I would go with the 300 WSM for your first choice if you are not going to hand load ,good bullet choice and ammo is usally easy to find, the 7 WSM is also a great choice, but ammo can somtimes be harder to find, which ever you choose I would suggest trying several bullet choices and pick the one that shoots best for you, I always try and pick the biggest bullet with the best BC and just stick with it. I wouldnt change bullet weight after finding a load that works, it will just be more consistent if you stick with one, good luck and happy hunting
     

  3. D.ID

    D.ID Well-Known Member

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    From the rounds you listed I would opt for the 300wsm as well. Great elk cartridge. Why the x-bolt? Since you have not decided on caliber yet I am assuming something particular struck you about the xbolt in general? Just curious................ Also have you considered just upgrading your 308 scope and loading it heavy for elk? At 400 it ought to be ok with heavy bullets and good shot placement.
     
  4. knukhuntr

    knukhuntr Member

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    Thanks for the info so far!

    HTML:
     
    Also have you considered just upgrading your 308 scope and loading it heavy for elk?
    
    I only own the one rifle, 308, it will be either my primary or backup depending on which hunt I'm on, I will be getting premium 180's as a backup for Moose / Elk. It's treated me well on numerous whitetail to date; 5x5 buck shot threw the heart @ 250 yds... also I have $$ buring in my pocket and NEED a new rifle!:D

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    Why the x-bolt?
    
    Fits me very well, points great
    The weight; 6.4 lbs is in the range I'm wanting
    The OAL; 42.75" for the WSM's is also what I'm wanting
    Great reviews regarding the stock/recoil pad being able to absorb lots of recoil
    Own a 10 yr old Win SX2 shotty and love the DURATOUCH, still in exc shape!
    Trigger/det mag/rifle's accuracy got good reviews.

    HTML:
     
     7 WSM is also a great choice, but ammo can somtimes be harder to find
    
    I noticed that as well, luckily I live not too far from Cabelas / Wholesale Sports in Winnipeg, Canada so if I went with the 7 and they had my ammo, i would definitely stock pile. But, that is one of the main reasons why the 300 WSM is @ # 1.
     
  5. 4bycamper

    4bycamper Well-Known Member

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    Sounds right to me.
    IMHO You just nailed it. If 300wsm is available, will do the job you need done, and works for you, then go with it.

    Let us know how it shoots. :D
     
  6. MHO

    MHO Well-Known Member

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    Another vote for the 300 wsm.
     
  7. knukhuntr

    knukhuntr Member

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    Well so far 4 votes for the 300 WSM... that's what I'm leaning towards.

    Also, anyone have ejection / feeding problems with X-Bolts in WSM's? I've read about some issues.

    Thanks again for all/any info!
     
  8. 4bycamper

    4bycamper Well-Known Member

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    Don't think so. Don't know about X bolts but my A bolts in 25 wssm. 270 wsm, 7mm saum all feed fine, No problems at all.

    I have had Winchesters in 25 wssm and 270 wsm. Also no feed problems ever. Makes me wonder where this talk about feeding issues with the wsm family comes from...:rolleyes: :D
     
  9. knukhuntr

    knukhuntr Member

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    It looks like the issues I read about are one off's from older generation WSM's...

    Thanks everyone. I'll probably go with the 300 WSM and try 180 Accubond / Partition or XP3.

    Got 6 months until my Moose hunt!
     
  10. Bughole

    Bughole Well-Known Member

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    one vote for the 325 WSM. Check the ballistics, for moose or elk it's better than the 300WSM. I love these little cases I have a 270, a 300 WSM , a 7WSM and a 325 WSM. Study ballistic numbers all of the time. The neat thing with the case is as the bore diameter increases these little cases respond with surprising numbers. Good for african plains species as well. I think the 300 WSM is the choice for an all around mountain rifle though. A few years back I was in the NWT HUNTING SHEEP with a 270 WSM and with all of the bear encounters (GRIZ) I decided that the 270wsm wasn't enough gun and so opted up to the 300 wsm so as to get the better heavier bullets, I hunt with a barnes 168 gr. Works near or far, though the 300wsm punches a pretty fair out hole in game at times.
     
  11. Long Time Long Ranger

    Long Time Long Ranger Well-Known Member

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    You may want to consider another brand besides Browning. You may want to rebarrel at a later date to something else and the Browning actions are not a good choice for gunbuilding. If you plan on keeping it as is from now on then it should perform well.

    Of the cartridges you listed I like the 300 wsm the best.
     
  12. bamadawg2009

    bamadawg2009 Well-Known Member

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    Im voting for the 280 as my first pick, less recoil and you can always have a gunsmith ream it out to a 280ackley then you have something close to a 7mm magnum and if you want to reload you can always find brass to fireform, just use 270, 30-06, or 25-06.
    Im in the process of building a 300wsm just for the hell of it. I cant say much about this caliber but have heard good things about it and I just wanted a 30 cal magnum.

    +1 on buying another brand of rifle, Brownings are great rifles but if you ever do get the itch to re-barrel some smiths wont touch it.
     
  13. knukhuntr

    knukhuntr Member

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    Thanks for all the info! My Leupy VXII 3x9-40 LR duplex just came in and I went to a couple LGS yesterday for one last browse... the XBolt sure feels great and there's only one 300 WSM left in town, I think I'll have to decide quickly.

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    one vote for the 325 WSM. Check the ballistics, for moose or elk it's better than the 300WSM
    
    you make a good point which I thought about, however this rifle will be used just as much for flat prairie deer hunting as well.... I think the 325 would be a bit too much for whitetails

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    You may want to rebarrel at a later date to something else and the Browning actions are not a good choice for gunbuilding
    
    good to know, that's something I never considered... at this point I'd leave the rifle as is with no plans to rebarrel but who knows down the road??

    HTML:
     
    Im voting for the 280 as my first pick, less recoil and you can always have a gunsmith ream it out to a 280ackley
    
    If I don't go with a WSM, the 280 really interests me. It would be great for deer, but it just doesn't have the same LR energy as the 300 WSM which will help for those big Moose / Elk... The 280AI would be great, but I don't reload and ammo is pretty scarse
     
  14. Long Time Long Ranger

    Long Time Long Ranger Well-Known Member

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    I would not rebarrel or work on any Browning rifles when I had my shop. Very cheap metal that was prone to cracking in a vise and very poor quality. I would not own one knowing what I do about them. There are much better choices out there.

    BamaDawg from Florida, Now that is a combo I want to know more about. Sounds like an Alabama native that is a Georgia Dawg fan now living in Gator country. Now that is a mix for sure. I know how competitive the SEC religion is down there in sports so that just intrigued me.

    I grew up in Georgia and have been a Dawg fan for 50 years. Went to grad school at Alabama and have been a roll tide fan for 35 years. So basically I hate anything with orange in it. When they play each other it's like being forced to choose between the pick of the SI swimsuit issue or the playmate of the month, tough choice. My wife is a fanatic Roll Tide fan who is one of a few who can claim Paul Bear Bryant as a former baby sitter. He watched after her at times in his office and would take her to the local soda shop.