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Old 03-14-2010, 21:09   #1
JohnW1963
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308 or 300 Win Mag

I am looking to get into long range shooting in a more serious way. For the past couple of years I have been shooting mainly WWII rifles with Iron Sights like a K-31, K-98, 1903A3 and M1 Garand. All of them had steel butt plates with no type of recoil pad and I could comfortably shoot 40-50-60 rounds per range trip plus a couple hundred of a .223 if I brought that one. I have a AR-15 .223 which is good from 0-300-400 yards. But I want to get a longer range sniper type rifle for target shooting and maybe eventually some long range competition shooting, like 600-1000 yards.

The 308 seems to be very popular, lots of ammo easily available, along with brass and bullets. I am also starting to reload my own rounds and will most likely be hand loading in stead of buying Match ammo.

But I am very attracted to the 300 Win Mag. In looking at the loading charts it is putting out bullets at 500-600 FPS faster than the 308. The Four potential downsides I see are: 1) More powder means more expensive ammo; and, 2) More powerful charges means shorter barrel life; and 3) More recoil; and, 4) They cost more by +$200 or so.

My practical self tells me to get the 308 and be happy and train like crazy with the saved money and if later on, say in 3-5 years I really do get into 1000 yard matches, at that time consider getting a 300 Win Mag or 7mm Remington Ultra Magnum for better, flatter long range shooting.

But part of me is thinking, why not get the 300 Win Mag now so I don't have to upgrade later? With a decent recoil pad the kick should be manageable and since I'll be loading my own the ammo won't cost that much more to load than the 308. And, it is just a downright kick-ass, bad-ass rifle.

Any feedback will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 03-15-2010, 12:03   #2
Zak Smith
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There is a sticky in this forum entitled "Introduction to Practical Long-Range Rifle Shooting - Resources". There are several that discuss cartridge selection and comparison in depth. For now, let me direct you to Page 2 of this one:

GATE Long-Range Shooting
article | Practical Long-Range Rifle Shooting, Part I - Rifle & Equipment GATE Long-Range Shooting

If you already reload, which it sounds like you do, buy a .260.

GATE Long-Range Shooting
article | The Case for .260 Remington: A Better Cartridge For Practical Long-Range Shooting GATE Long-Range Shooting

As you say, the main benefits of .308 are ubiquity of match ammunition and components and long barrel life; however, it is at a ballistic disadvantage compared to other rounds for long-range shooting. The .260 will match factory .300WM ballistics in terms of wind and drop with about half the powder burned.
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Last edited by Zak Smith; 03-15-2010 at 12:04..
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Old 03-15-2010, 18:05   #3
JohnW1963
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Thanks for the information. When I first posted the Sticky wasn't there yet, otherwise I would have read it prior to posting. I'll be sure to read it now. You are the second or third or fourth person who has mentioned the remington 260. Now I have more research to do! This is just so much dang burn fun! Thanks again and if I get some more questions I'll be sure to try and phrase em good to help you to help me become a better, more knowledgeable shooter.
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Old 03-30-2010, 08:55   #4
JohnW1963
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After extensive research and with your help I have decided that the Remington 260 is just what I'm looking for. If anybody wants some once fired Lake City 308 brass, or some 308 bullets or dies, message me or email me at john329esq@yahoo.com. I also have it posted in the for sale section under parts and accessories.
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