375 H&H Dangerous Game build?


New Member
Jan 19, 2021
Copper Center, Alaska
I've got a Sako AV in 375 H&H that I use for everything from caribou to moose to black and brown bear. Might be a good option for you if you can find a Sako action somewhere. It is one of the smoothest feeling and feeding actions I have. This one has an 18" barrel which is awesome for the bear stands and brush. It doesn't have a whole lot of weight to it and it doesn't have a brake on it so the recoil is kinda stiff but it's not horrible.

Elk Hunter 338

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2010
I have done a few builds using Defiance Deviant actions and carbon barrels for long range shooting and hunting. Switching gears I want to build a gun for Africa and Brown bear in Alaska, not sure what to do????? I am guessing that some of the true gunsmiths on this site have worked with DG rifles and might be willing to help me out. I want something on the heavy side (10-12lbs with scope), standard safari style stock out of composite or fiberglass (most shooting will be off sticks), action and barrel to be stainless, BDL floor plate, radial muzzle break. I know a little about controlled feed (seems to be go to for DG rifles in Africa) but I have only worked with R700 actions. Is there any reason not to build off another Defiance (R700) platform? Is there a better action for this purpose? Any suggestions on stock to use? I know quick access to safety is a must, any thoughts on that? Any insight would be much appreciated, thank you!

It Sounds like a sweet build for sure.. i'll give my 2 cents on it.. and how i would build it and how I've built them before and they are slick!! also one word of advise stick with what you know and are comfy with.. nothing spells trouble like switching a simple thing like the safety too throw you off in the heat of things

defiance deviant ultra lite nitrided every piece on it nitrided DLC
trigger tech special timed and tuned for that action
Control round feed but with rem style saftey WHY because you use too it!! and its what you know
#5 kreiger or maybe #6 depends on you really, fluted however if you want nitrided also 22-23" chambered in 375 HH
Mcmillan winchester express inletted for the defiance
barrel band swivel

very clean simple setup! if it were me building a purposeful DG rifle I would not put open sights on it !! I would run a lower power optic for my main (which in all reality will never fail and honestly how many guys have you ever known personally that there scope failed and they couldn't physically shoot at 50 yards), then i would have a small red dot reflex sight like an RMR or which ever you prefer BUT high quality that can bolt too a pic rail mount easily already zeroed. traveling I always have my fixit kit and that optic in its little case .. if your main optic goes down you can swap out on less than 5 minutes for an easy back up! simple ... bullet proof!
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Well-Known Member
Dec 4, 2004
I would disagree about a 24 inch bbl as well; I bobbed my .416 RM back to 22" and the Cape buffalo sure didn't notice. The .416 is practically a straight walled cartridge and doesn't use slow burning powders; my observation is the slower the power, the longer the bbl.

As for controlled round feeding, I have shot all of my DG with a Mod 70 CRF but two leopards and a lion with a Rem 700; in AK I shot DG with a 700 and Ruger 77. I don't think CRF is mandatory. In fact, you can make an argument that a really hot load in a CRF Mod 70 will fail to extract; a 700 will either pull it out, rip the brass off the rim, or break the extractor (unlikely).

I have two .375s but if I was building one from scratch, I would either go with the Ruger or go all out and get a .375 RUM.


New Member
Aug 31, 2013
Like Elk Hunter 338 said stick with the safety you know.
IMO 9 pounds total, 23 - 24 inch barrel, and a slightly longer LOP is perfect for shooting off sticks.
For me, the muzzle blast from shorter barrel length (and/or muzzle break) outweighs the benefits. For me 23 - 24 inch barrel balances and points nicely.


Well-Known Member
Jul 8, 2010
Gillette Wy
I’ve only hunted cape buf one trip. I was able to kill 2. Been over to Africa 6 times now. In the bush a shorter barrel is handier. If it was me I’d go to a 22 inch barrel. Will lose a little from the 24 inch but not much. Take a look at the.375 Ruger unless the nostalgia of the H&H calls to you. By the way a 300 gr Swift A-frames does a good job on Buffalo.


Active Member
Aug 26, 2008
I also thought a Defiance with CRF and 3 position safety would be the ants pants but it's not as nice to cycle as the push feeds. Fortunate to handle one at Hill Country Rifles where they had a built up rifle to test.

My existing custom is the USRAC action with the old M70 trigger. Bought a new Safai Express and only kept the action. It works a treat. Great gunsmith but boy took 3 years! Not that it mattered. Completed in 2003 and only hunted in 2019!

Purely because you can buy 24 or 22" factory rifles my barrel is 23" why not!

Oh and barrel band swivel is a must to keep that muzzle low in brush. Custom talley bases and 1/4 rib just for looks and flip up ivory night sight completes it.

Was 10lb 5oz with Swarovski 1-4x24. Took it to Africa in 2019 for the first time and it worked wonderfully!

That 3pos safety holding back the firing pin is nice to have when you have one up and have to sling it or carry.

Scott E Ames

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Dec 25, 2012
I had a 375 H&H and after my first Cape Buffalo hunt promptly bough a 416 Rigby and sold the 375. I know the 375 kills buffalo but it is nowhere near as effective at turning a dangerous game charge as the 416's or 458's. The observed effects of a perfect 375 broadside shot to the heart on that first buffalo were about equal to a horsefly bite. Shot that one 3 more times before it dropped. The 40 caliber plus rounds work much better on really dangerous game. The 375 H&H is perfect for large plains game but even perfect shots will take some time to work on buffalo and elephant unless you brain them. Again just my opinion which is worth what you paid for it.


Well-Known Member
Apr 23, 2014
I have one with 24" and my friend have 20".
I will recomomended 20" because with same ammo velocity loss is 25 fps.
I myself thinking to shortened my rifle to 18".

For muzzle brake I will use it.
My rifle is Sauer S 202 Hatari


Well-Known Member
May 13, 2012
Dakota del norte
I have a Remington 1-of 500 SPS in 375 H&H that shoots like a dream. Off sticks or bench 270 Gr. SP or 300 Gr. solid clover leaf at 100, Hornady ammo, Weaver 1.5X6.5 Illm. Dangerous Game scope.
You too eh? I've been dumping rounds from my sps dg 1 of 500 for years. My rifle wears a straight 6x Nikon Monarch... My rifle eats 300tsx or 285 gs pills but shoots solids decently too... The 270 speer is accurate as heck in my rifle also as is the 260 AB... Never did get the 300 hdy boat tail to shoot, but I only had a partial box.


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