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elk rifle
Big Game Hunting topics that dont fit other categories
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captbrian
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 4:56 pm    Post subject: elk rifle Reply with quote

i'm not sure what size we would hunt the most of, but would like something capable of taking large, mature bulls. i would rather pass on a shot because of the shot itself, not because of uncertainty of the caliber.

i like to think i can shoot my 7mm-08 pretty dang good, and i know it's all about placement. but, i do have that 'permission' for a new toy.

i don't think i'm up for shooting the .338's and .375's. not too sure how accurate i would be with that.

what are the advantages/disadvantages of long action/short action. i was hoping to go with the short action if possible, but i'm not sure why, other than that's what my 7mm-08 is and i really like it.

would you shy away from the wsm's because of ammo availability, performance, or their uncertain future? i'm not a reloader, so i'd be relying on factory ammo.
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Dimitri
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 5:17 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

Only problems between Long and short actions I can see is if you use a short action round in a Long action, if you dont feed it right it will jam I've read because of improper feeding. The US Army has this problem because they feed the 308Win in a Long action Remington (wanted to be able to convert from 308Win to 300Win Mag in the future). But I hear this problem can be corrected with practice. And the other problem so to say is the fact it will take longer to cycle the action. Very Happy

Ammo avalibilty to me is key, if I cant pick up a box of ammo at any store that sells ammo then its not a good idea to get that caliber in my mind. (Yes I know good 8mm Mauser is hard to find good full power ammo here ..... dang liability issues ..... but I got my FN49 as a gift so I make do Laughing )

Then Performance, the 300WSM and the 300Win are pretty close and are like one and the same. So I dont see why someone should get a new 300WSM instead of a time tested 300Win Mag. Smile

Uncertain future, well everything is uncertian to a extent unless you stick to the "Magnificant Seven" thouse being: 30-06 Springfield, 303 British, 8mm Mauser, 30-30Win, 45-70 Goverment, 300 Win Mag and 7mm Rem Mag. Smile

Dimitri

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mikekuzara
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 7:13 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

If you are not comfortable taking long shots, 300 yards plus, then I would stick with what you are used to. I have used a 30-06 for every elk I have taken. The longest was 350 yards. 180 grain or higher is a must for elk.

The magnum rounds are great for long range knock down power, but under 300 yards a 30-06 will do just fine. Since you are used to shooting this round, you may feel more comfortable with it. Since most elk hunting is a LOT of up and down at high altitude, the lighter the rifle the better. When you combine light weight with magnum cartridges, you get one heck of a sore shoulder. Ihave seen a lot of people that can't hit a thing because they flinch from the heavy recoil.

Pick a round you are comfortable shooting in a light rifle and practise shots at 200 yards, preferably 300. A range finder is also a good idea.

Just my 2 cents worth.

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Handloader
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 8:48 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

As an elk guide, the most critical thing in the shooting equipment is the type of bullet used, IMO. A whole new generation of deep penetrating bullets have come to market and are superior to the standard bullets in terms of busting bone and, importantly, exiting.

Regardless of the cartridge/rifle you select, buying ammo with premium bullets is cheap insurance for consistent results. Federal, Remington and Winchester all offer premium bullets in common cartridges. Look for Nosler partitions, Barnes TSX, AccuBonds, Trophy Bear Claws, etc.
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george20042007
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2006 11:16 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

All good advice here. When Weatherby came out with the Vanguard, I felt I could finally step up a bit & get a real elk gun...my choice being the 300 Weatherby magnum. I haven't been able to hunt elk yet with it, but, when that opportunity comes to be, I have a lot of confidence in it and my handloads. Like Mike, that's my 2 cents worth Laughing
Keep it coming...
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1895ss
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2006 10:42 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

Some great advise so far. There are so many good or excellent choices some depend on the terrain you will be hunting in. I think the 300's would be the middle of the pack. All the Elk I've shot have been with my 30-06 and would sure like to drop one with my 45-70 one of these years. You see I haven't been able to go Elk hunting because of work for a couple of years.

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squirrelbait
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 6:07 am    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

1895ss, I am thinking about the Marlin lever in 45-70. What would you consider max range for elk size game with it?? I know it would depend on load but just some relative idea? Seems like a grand old cartridge to me.
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DallanC
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 8:36 am    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

squirrelbait wrote:
1895ss, I am thinking about the Marlin lever in 45-70. What would you consider max range for elk size game with it?? I know it would depend on load but just some relative idea? Seems like a grand old cartridge to me.

200-250. I'd be concerned with both the drop and loss of energy out past 200. I know there is some nice premium ammo for the 45-70 now that is too strong for 1880's rifles.

I've shot elk with a .50cal frontstuffer before at 110 yards. Never recovered a round, all complete passthroughs, lots of fun!


-DallanC
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squirrelbait
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 8:46 am    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

Dallan, sounds like shot placement, shot placement, and shot placement.
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1895ss
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 5:45 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

I agree with Dallan. They hit hard out to about 200 yrds but past 200 yrds you really have to know your bullet drop. They drop really fast after about 225 yrds. I generally limit my shots to approximately 200yrds. It is a great old caliber and a joy to shoot and I love it, but I'll warn you, max loads (smokeless powder) like I shoot can be abusive if your not careful.

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Coyote_Hunter_
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 9:53 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

captbrian -

In a hunting rifle you are unlikely to see any advantage between short and regular mags. The differences between individual rifles will be greater than any inherent difference in the accuracy of the cartridges.

Use a premium bullet and anything from a .270 and up will do the job, some cartridges just have a bit more reach. Since you already have a 7mm-08 I'd recommend a 7mm Rem Mag or .300 Win Mag.

A 7mm Rem Mag was my choice for nearly 25 years. Use a good 160g bullet and it will do the job very reliably. If you don't handload I recommend the Federal 160g Trophy Bonded load, second choice would be the Federal 160g Barnes TSX load. I use a 160g North Fork handload these days, my hunting buddy uses a 160g Trophy Bonded handload. Longest shot was a 6x5 bull at 350 measured yards. Put it behind the shoulder and got an exit. The bull dropped, got up and took a struggling step or two, then dropped for good. Recoil is more than your 7mm-08 but not bad at all - about the same as a .30-06.

The last couple years I have hunted with a .300 Win Mag and 180g North Fork and TSX handloads. In factory loads I would use Federal 180g Trophy Bonded or Barnes MRX, or 165g Barnes TSX. My North Fork load is plenty accurate at 600 yards and still retains more than enough energy for big bulls. Took a big cow (the guides estimated 800 pounds, I think less) this year with the North Fork at 250 yards, behind the shoulder with an exit. The cow managed 20 yards before piling up.

My .45-70 uses 350g North Fork handloads and is good to 250 yards easily, and out to 300 yards under perfect conditions. The one bull I took with this load was a 6x6 at 213 lasered yards. He just tipped over after a broadside shot. Recoil makes the .300 Win mag look like a pussy cat, something to consider. For factory loads the Buffalo Bore 350g Speer load is the one I would use. I load the same bullet to similar velocities and it shoots very well.

To answer your question about short magnums, I would stay away from them for a variety of reasons.

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george20042007
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 12:15 am    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

squirrelbait wrote:
1895ss, I am thinking about the Marlin lever in 45-70. What would you consider max range for elk size game with it?? I know it would depend on load but just some relative idea? Seems like a grand old cartridge to me.

I have an 1895 Marlin in 45-70 & really enjoy shooting with it. I've handloaded some pretty stout rounds with it & would use them out to 300 yards for elk. But, Hornady has the new LeverEvolution that shows ballistics for a 325 grain bullet to be 1225 fps (1083 ft pounds of energy) at 300 yards where the bullet drop is around 30 inches (4 inches at 200 yards). That's pretty good performance. My handloads are with 300 grain bullets, but, felt recoil is greater than that of the LeverEvolution. Still, I wouldn't hesitate taking elk out to 300 yards with a 45-70.
Keep it coming...
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sniper
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 2:31 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

captbrian wrote:
i'm not sure what size we would hunt the most of, but would like something capable of taking large, mature bulls. i would rather pass on a shot because of the shot itself, not because of uncertainty of the caliber.

i like to think i can shoot my 7mm-08 pretty dang good, and i know it's all about placement. but, i do have that 'permission' for a new toy.

iwhat are the advantages/disadvantages of long action/short action. i was hoping to go with the short action if possible, but i'm not sure why, other than that's what my 7mm-08 is and i really like it.

would you shy away from the wsm's because of ammo availability, performance, or their uncertain future? i'm not a reloader


Hello:
Your 7mm-08 will do just fine. It is the modernization of the 7X57 MM Mauser, and that is capable of taking any animal on earth. Not that it would be ideal for the great bears, or the African Big 5, except maybe Lion, but it has done the job, and would again. For Elk, your 7mm-08 will be just fine, and ammo will not be much of a question. My .270 with 150 gr. Nosler Partition (Federal load) did fine on elk.

The new, Whiz-Bang cartridges are intersting but are the answer to an unasked question, imho. Sure, they all work, but are they better than the plain vanilla, no longer exciting 7mm Remmie Magnum, or the 30-06?

I doubt it. Look at the numbers, and you will see that most of the short, fat magnums are about equal to the "old technology". The gains seem to be mostly incremental. If you just GOTTA have one, go for it!

Long action/short action...maybe a bit of advantage in rigidity, and ounces lighter, but but a good gunsmith should be able to make a magnum action feed a .22 long rifle properly, if necessary.

But, for hunting, choose whatever you like. Your 7mm-08 is a short action, I betcha and so are the.223, 22-250, 25-3000, .243, .300 Savage, and .308.

The long actions hold all the rest; the 6MM Rem., 6.5X55 mm Swedish, 257 Roberts, the 7X57 25-06,.270, 30-06, 7mm maggie, up to 375H&H.

Don't miss the golden opportunity to add to your arsenal, and have fun! Very Happy
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shooterjon
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2006 3:23 pm    Post subject: Re: elk rifle Reply with quote

Don't miss the golden opportunity to add to your arsenal, and have fun! Very Happy.

Sniper I like the way you think, I have just added a 17 HMR,308 and another 243 to my arsenal and never been happier! Very Happy
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