Lets say your figuring on a shot between 800-1200 max distance 1600.
caliber would be your choice. if you vote say 15&up because you shoot a big gun then say thats why
Well, there is a miles differenc between a 800 yard shot and a 1200 yard shot and 1600 is another level again.
So, I will think in terms of a 1200 yard shot and say this. I sure would not want a rifle under 12lbs if I wanted my success rate to be good. And for the 1600 yard shots I would want a 16 lb .338.
Scott, in all the rifles in different calibers I have built, it has always been the heavier rifles that were the best tack drivers. Even though they all have very effective brakes. You should shoot my 14 lb 6 br with a brake. I get your drift but I feel weight will be of help for accuracy no matter what the recoil. So probably it would be good to look at it this way. What is the distance potential of the caliber with the intended weight of bullet you will use? Then, what would be the accuracy level for that rifle to do what you need it to at that distance, .5 moa, 1 moa? Then decide how thin of a barrel and light weight of a rifle you can get by with. I don't feel it is all in recoil, the human error is multiplied with a lighter rifle. From ability to hold on target, heart beat right down to the smoothness and brake of the trigger, weight is your friend.