Aug 2, 2011
Savage makes their new ultralight chambered in this. It's got a proof carbon fiber barrel. 280AI is a sammi cartridge and a great performing 7mm long action option. I doubt it's going out of style anytime soon.
I PM'd you on facebook.....your Rokslide acct......


Well-Known Member
Dec 26, 2020
Cincinnati, OH
I had GAP build my 280AI in 2011 and I've seen more and more availability since then (factory ammo, more brass offerings, etc) and I see more and more posts with reloading data, comments on the rifle, etc. Net, growing availability and popularity vs 9 yrs ago.

Performance of the cartridge is great for most NA game and as someone mentioned, getting nearly 7mm mag performance with a lot less power (= less recoil). Great bullet offerings and ballistics for the 7mm bullets. Maybe I'm just a supporter but if I started over and could only build one rifle for my hunting purposes I'm not sure if there is anything else I'd find more appealing than the 280AI.

Good luck on your pursuit..... half the fun is researching and figuring it all out... like Xmas everyday. :)


Well-Known Member
Jan 2, 2020
280ai is a fantastic cartridge. Might also consider a 7 Saum as it’s close to a ballistic twin on a short action
I would be torn between the 2. To get long heavy bullets, it's worth going to a long action with the saum, but if your going long action, why not go 280AI?


Well-Known Member
Feb 8, 2020
Enumclaw washington
I would be torn between the 2. To get long heavy bullets, it's worth going to a long action with the saum, but if your going long action, why not go 280AI?
Only reason I would go to 280Ai is to shoot the 195 Berger’s or the heavier hammers. But I load the 180 vlds into a short action at a tad over 3k with no issues at all. That being said, I have mulled over building a 280ai just because I want one!

CBH Australia

Well-Known Member
Dec 12, 2020
Ok so bear with me I’m new to the forum. I’ve gone through the search bar and done a lot of research way before ever making an account.
I’ve been on a quest to build a all around mountain rifle and keep landing on .280 ai for the caliber.

my question is what’s yalls opinions on it sticking around. I want to buy a a factory rifle vs build one. My problem is I’m seeing a lot of rifles that were offered in .280ai that are no longer so makes me worry that it’s losing popularity. But I also see that Peterson started offering brass this years it’s just out of stock. I’m not exactly against building one but I’m scared to invest in something that I wouldn’t be able to get components for. But also enjoy having the option to purchase factory ammo in a pinch.
I just built one on a budget. I also noted 6 months ago a large retailer had good prices on Christensen Arms but they have taken a big increase when I went back on the site .

Build vs Buy, I think I found you had a Christensen Arms or other you might find it’s will hold its value or may be easier to sell than a custom. Known quantity and readily referenced for pricing comparison. Just my view from looking at various used guns sites. How often do we see a Custom that someone spent “xyz” and Advertising at a reduced price.

My build in Aussie dollars and round figures came in just over $3000 vs CA at $4500
Precision Defence Industries or Bolly Carbon Fibre stock $1000
Tikka clearance new rifle for action donor $950
iBI CArbon Fibre barrel $900
Gunsmith $250

I got some deals this would be closer to $4000 otherwise. Buying the Christensen when the price was right ($3500?) would have been a good move

Otherwise this worked out OK for me as Proof Research CF barrels run at $1500 here.

As for the .280ai, I like my 7mm-08 and used a 7mmRm in Africa and spoke with many shooters on mother forum and then researched the .280ai, so many good reports that the general consensus had to be true.

I’ve only loaded 20 and fired 17 in testing . I have it on paper but need to put it over the bench with a decent rest.

I purchased Nosler Brass online it was available, I later found a really good forum review of Petersen brass and the consistency and pricing were shown to be better.

I built because off the way things fell and the deals that available but what is the rifle worth if I wanted to sell it? Would people wonder why if I offered it for sale? Anyway I’m keeping it as a light weight hunting rifle.

26” was the available length in Carbon Fibre, I could have had a little taken from the rear before chambering i guess.

So the rifle is light but the CF barrel being long and perhaps heavier than a pencil thin barrel does put the weight forward but it feels like handling a heavier rifle. So light to carry but stable with that forward weight when shouldering it standing. This may be an advantage. I don’t hunt as hard and high as some but I did intend it Tom be a lightweight build.

It has an atlas works bottom metal as the stock makers recommend this.

I want to test the rifle, test myself, test the IBI barrel and test my Ginsmith, I’m happy it’s not a 5kK plus experiment.

I’m happy with the cartridge and component availability, I also ordered dies when I got started. A retailer found them in Wholesalers inventory and got them for me so everything was available in Australia just a couple of months back.

A member of another forum sent me a case and dummy round to check it out or we talk my appetite, like I needed encouragement. I fondled them fondly. He also offered the loan of a reamer but as luck would have it my smith had one on order with some others.

My smith does a lot of F Class rifles and showed me the 7mm SAUM, as a hunter it was not a consideration, just my preference.

I think the .280 ai is a good choice for a lightweight, mountain rifle, sheep rifle or just a hunting rifle.

Also, the barrel etc works ok as I have A Limbsaver recoil pad standard on the Bolly stock and the forward weight of the barrel I don’t experience a lot of muzzle jump and I never even considered a brake anyway and probably won’t.

Also consider PSE composites stocks from Ireland, I almost went down that line and export orders do not attract the VAT so they will send you an export price list.


Well-Known Member
Aug 7, 2013
I have been hunting with a 280 Remington ( the Ai's younger brother) for 30 years(**** I'm old). I have never had an animal walk away from the squeeze of a trigger. If I were buying an ultra light gun today, it would be the Kimber Ascent in 280AI, its about a pound lighter than the Remington mountain. Of course all guns and ammo are made of unobtanium right now, but this summer the classifieds will be filled with them.


Well-Known Member
Feb 1, 2020
Roanoke Va
I’ve owned all the Magnum big bangers and after 35 yrs of hunting settled on the .280ai as my favorite all around flavor. The guys on this site have given u some excellent advice on the performance and caliber longevity. I want to add that recoil management is a huge benefit for me. Maybe it’s the specs of my builds, but I’ve owned light, heavy, and in between....with and without brakes. Every .280ai has been a joy to shoot. Everyone’s different but show me a rifle that you don’t like to take to the range and I’ll show you one that gets sold, becomes a safe Queen, and is the last one u reach for when going afield. If you don’t practice you won’t be confident or accurate. I don’t think there is a recoil to energy chart, but I’m guessing the .280ai would be at or near the top.
My current rig can shoot 140s at blistering speed. I am running 168VLDs at 3000fps and the recoil feels like a .243.....with a 9lb rifle.
I too am a fan of building what u want, just know that you will likely find a way to blow your budget. I haven’t bought a factory rifle in many years, but recently I’ve considered scooping up a Cooper. All factory rifles are not created equally. I have a friend who has - safe full of Coopers and the results have been beyond expectations.
U could get the rifle cerakoted and the stock painted or dipped and can still come in at a fair price. Just saying. By the way, I’ve seen as many .280ai Coopers listed as any other caliber.