New 338 Edge will not fire. What now?


Well-Known Member
Nov 3, 2008
I am having a problem with a new .338 Edge rifle that I just picked up from a gun smith. It is a Remington 700 built on a Sendero SF II platform.

The rifle will not fire.

With a bullet seated off the lands, the firing pin leaves no indentation in the primer and the case will not eject as the rim has not engaged under the extractor clip.

With an empty, brand new case chambered, the extractor will not ride over the rim when the bolt is closed. The case just remains in the chamber. If I raise the rifle the case just falls out.

I tried to seat a bullet out so that it was into the lands. I had hoped that the bullet seated into the lands would hold the case base against the bolt face. I hoped that this would enable me to fire form the cases but the rifle still would not fire. As you can imagine, with a .338 Edge this is not very good for the nerves to have a miss fire.

As the primer had no firing pin indentation, it looks like there was not enough case neck tension and the bullet was pushed back down into the case as I chambered it. This I think meant that the rim did not slip over the extractor clip again.

From these tests. I would assume that the head space of the chamber is too long.

Any ideas what to do next?
Until otherwise known, I would also assume, for safety's sake, that there is a potentially dangerous headspace issue and take the rifle directly back to the smith. I wouldn't try to use the firearm at all. Hope you get it figured out soon! Good luck.
Well I just managed to get it to go bang.

I had to take the bolt out, wedge a live round under the extractor rim then load both the bullet and bolt as one unit from the rear.

The live round had the bullet seated way out to be into the lands, so as to hold the cartridge against the bolt face.

Holding the bullet in place I chambered it and got it to fire. I don't mind saying that I was shitting myself as I pulled the trigger.

Man that case stretched. It now has a very short neck. I would say that the case shoulder moved forward over 0.080".

I rang the gun smith and he is going to fix the problem, right away.

This is a good way to develope a bad flinch.:cool:
Man that was a pretty silly thing to do, your very lucky that case didnt seperate. The problem was a no brainer excessive head space to the extreme, seating the bullet into the lands may have taken up the excess and allowed the firing pin to do its job but that brass is going to flow foward until it either stops where it should have been to begin with or seperates. And some people on here rubbish remington cases they carnt be to bad can they. Glad nothing bad happed anyway, i dont know who built that gun for you but to allow it to go out of the workshop like that is unforgivable. Good luck with it the edge is a fine cartridge.
In my opinion, find another 'smith. You'll probably never know why this happened, but on this rifle it was grossly negligent, or incompetent.

Why ?

1. Huge mistake on headspace. There are at least 3 test stages during chambering that will
catch headspacing error. I don't know how anyone could miss all of them.
2. He couldn't have tested it for feeding and extraction. It would have done the same
that it did to you. Even without firing, it still would have failed to pick up the rim and extract.
3. It should have been test fired before turning it over to you. All of the problems you have
would be discovered when it wouldn't fire. Even though some shooters want to do all the
barrel break-in, any custom rifle should be test fired by the builder, with agreement in
in advance, especially a boomer.
4. I don't want to pile on, but jmden and Big Mick got it right, you should never have fired it. You
can get away with a lot of mistakes on a .22 Hornet, but not a boomer like the Edge.
Extremely dangerous. You were very lucky.

Joel posted while I was writing this novel. He got it in one sentence.

Good luck and good hunting, Tom
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OTOH, what you've just described is a standard wildcat case fire-forming technique.

You could call your new wildcat the .338 Edge Magnum...or more appropriately, the .338 O.S. (oh ****!). :D
I have been going over and over this post and Lewis H brings up a possibility. All of my boomers have belted cases and I haven't fireformed a shouilder headspaced cartridge in years. If you are fireforming from .338 Rum cases the difference in the datum line to base dimension might be accountable for the rounds going too deep into the Edge chamber. I'm not familiar with either round except that I know they headspace on the shoulder. I don't know how to fireform this case correctly, but if that's the problem, I don't think seating the bullet to engrave the rifling in order to hold the cartridge against the bolt face is the answer.

I hope it turns out that the headspace is correct for the Edge, and it is just a matter of finding out how to safely fireform these cases to the longer chamber! If that is the problem, I still think the 'smith should have test fired the rifle and took about a minute to be tell you how he held it against the bolt face for safe firing.

There are a lot of Edge shooters on this site that know how it's done.

If there are Edge cases and you're using them, you just have a really bad chamber.

Let us know how it comes out, Tom
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IMO the Edge is not worth the hassle. The 338 Ultra has plenty of energy and in a pinch you can shoot factory ammo. Like when you are 1100 miles from home and find that your ammo is still sitting on the bench. Ca ca happens.
Probably he best way to fire form the brass would be to expand the neck to something like .345-.355 inside diameter. Then, neck size just enough of the neck to make the case snug in the chamber.
That is how a lot of folks make the 6 Dashers from 6 BR brass and probably BRX cases, too.

My choice would be to simply take enough off of the shoulder and face of the barrel to make the rifle a plain vanilla 338 Ultramag and forget the whole Edge idea.
I'd sure like to know what the 'smith used for headspace gage(s).
Is it possible that a 338 RUM factory case/round was chambered in the 338 EDGE chambered rifle? Could this have caused the excessive headspace?

Someone must have tried this before. What do you think?
The EDGE is just a 300RUM case necked up to .338. That's it. Very simple and very powerful and quite a few here think it is worth the minimal effort to work with this chambering as it is more powerful than the .338 RUM.

If the OP was mistakenly using 338 RUM brass, this could be the cause of the issue noted as 338 RUM brass is quite a bit shorter---by about .080, if I recall correctly.


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OK, This is a photo of two edge cases for comparison. The one on the left is unfired and the one on the right is the case that I managed to get to fire in my new rifle. Both cases were made from Remington 300 RUM brass.

As you can see the fired case has had the shoulder pushed a considerable way forward. There must be a lot of slop in the chamber. about 0.080" as I measure it. I won't be attempting to fire this rifle again until the gun smith has fixed it in two days time.

I think when he installed the oversize recoil lug, he forgot to take the extra thickness into account? Maybe? Who knows?

Unfortunately he lives 7 hours drive away, so I have to drive up to his place, wait for him to fix it then drive 7 hours home again.

Anyone want to test fire it for me??????? I now have a bad flinch.

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Why would you drive the rifle there - just ship it. I just shipped a rifle out the other day, USPS. It cost about $15 with Delivery Confirmation. Insurance is extra if you want it.

Seven hours each way - no way!
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