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View Full Version : 338 Lapua as a hunting round....



alinwa
02-18-2012, 08:11 PM
I tested muzzle brakes today on a 338 that's sending 300's at 2750fps.

To say the recoil is "horrendous" would be an understatement :)

Here's what I did. I set up a 7mm Rem Mag at 11 pounds and loaded it up until it was max'd out with heavy bullets. Recoil was up there where most people would find it bothersome, NOT comfortable on the bench. I set this up on the sled as a benchmark and it moved my recoil sled 4 1/4 inches.... The gun and sled are around 25lb (???? guessing) and recoiled just over 4" on all six different days of testing. Very consistent.


My best muzzle brake cuts this down to 1 3/4 inches and "feels" like a .243.....


So, after baselining the test and trying some other hunting rifles on the sled, some of which neared the 4" mark, I strapped the 11lb 338 down and yarked the string.





15 1/4 inches of recoil.......



HOley cow, I've got some work to do..... I was hoping to cut the rifle weight down a couple-three more pounds :):)


LOL


al

John Kielly
02-18-2012, 08:20 PM
So which end of the gun are you proposing to use to down game.....?

alinwa
02-19-2012, 01:26 AM
We use them out on the Peninsula for clear cut shots and cross canyon shots on the Roosevelt Bulls.

But when I hit the ridges on foot with a little overnight pack, I carry my 7 pound 338 Win.

Below is one of my brakes with a 308 Win cartridge and a 338 Lapua cartridge. Rifle weighs 9-1/2 pounds, recoil is not bad at all.

300 Match Kings are a no-no for elk. Use a good 225 grain or so premium hunting bullet for elk.

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a1cc26b3127ccefe9b6afc5e6200000030O02QZsmjZw5aA9 vPgw/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/


For hunting, as in walking around, the load is 225 Barnes TTSX's at 338WM velocity. The 300's are for specialized usage, shots over 500yds as up close they tend to leave only pieces.

al

IndianaJames
02-19-2012, 02:33 AM
My son allowed me to develop loads for his 338 Ruger Mountain Rifle...no brake. 0,o Not the nicest thing I've ever been volunteered for.

J

tillroot1
02-19-2012, 01:15 PM
I suppose this may open something up, but why not the 300 grain Sierra on Elk? I have used them for a few years now, and they have been flawless in everything I hit, even 2 mule deer does lined up, went thru both of them, entry and exit looked nearly idetical, shot from 540 yards. Just asking. Ron Tilley


Al, what are you building as far as breaks? any pictures? I have been using Defensive Edge breaks and they work well.

alinwa
02-19-2012, 06:00 PM
I suppose this may open something up, but why not the 300 grain Sierra on Elk? I have used them for a few years now, and they have been flawless in everything I hit, even 2 mule deer does lined up, went thru both of them, entry and exit looked nearly idetical, shot from 540 yards. Just asking. Ron Tilley


Al, what are you building as far as breaks? any pictures? I have been using Defensive Edge breaks and they work well.

I can't get the Sierras to go into one hole all the time.

The brakes I'm building are designed similarly to Shawn's (or Holland Radial, Benny Cooley, etc) but three times as wide.

al

Lynn
02-19-2012, 09:12 PM
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Alinwa
Go with the clamshell style brake and never look back.It won't kick up dirt and it work force the buttstock into your jaw either.The Holland Ultra brake is shown on the clamshell for size comparison.I think Barrett sells a clamshell with deflectors if the concussion bothers your ears or sinuses.

Tillroot1
My dad shot a 6X6 bull east of Baggs,Wyoming with a 243 and a 107 Sierra Matchking.
Lynn
Edit: Just looked at the Defensive Edge muzzlebrakes.They look right and don't have combustion gases bouncing off the ground are pushing the stock into your face.

alinwa
02-19-2012, 09:30 PM
Lynn, that's exactly what I'm doing, making clamshells..... (that's why I said "3 times as wide) ........ the difference being, mine are tunable like a BOSS. They are essentially Calfee style overhang tuners but clamshell muzzlebrakes.

It's easier to buy/build round brakes and modify for tuning but they don't catch enough gas.

al

Boyd Allen
02-20-2012, 11:47 AM
Years back, a friend had a .338-78 KT built, as a hunting rifle. The case is larger than your Lapua. He loaded 250s up over 3,100 with a lot of H870. It was built on a maxed out SAKO action, with a wood stock, a Decelerator pad, one of those in the butt mercury filled recoil reducers, and a conventional, but good sized muzzle break. I shot the rifle from the bench, more than once, for several shots. The recoil was not painful. I could concentrate on my shooting. BUT the blast made you feel like your hart had stopped for an instant, and anyone who was near the shooter (concrete firing line floor and steel roof extending ' in front of the bench) had better have on double protection, and be pushing their muffs into the sides of their head. That 870 was giving a lot of muzzle pressure, and blast. Only a fool would shoot that monster without a brake. His experience with that rifle taught him that hunting bullets in that caliber are not constructed to hold together at that caliber's top velocity (obviously distance related) so when the .338 Lapua came out, he had one built because its smaller capacity was a better match for the velocities that he favors. Actually, it is a variant with a 37 degree shoulder. Built on a BAT single shot action, with a walnut and carbon fiber stock, it is extremely accurate. I will be interested in your results.

Hunter
02-20-2012, 02:38 PM
I can't get ... Sierras to go into one hole all the time.

Don't feel badly; I can't do that either.

UncleB
02-20-2012, 06:48 PM
I tested muzzle brakes today on a 338 that's sending 300's at 2750fps.

To say the recoil is "horrendous" would be an understatement :)

Here's what I did. I set up a 7mm Rem Mag at 11 pounds and loaded it up until it was max'd out with heavy bullets. Recoil was up there where most people would find it bothersome, NOT comfortable on the bench. I set this up on the sled as a benchmark and it moved my recoil sled 4 1/4 inches.... The gun and sled are around 25lb (???? guessing) and recoiled just over 4" on all six different days of testing. Very consistent.


My best muzzle brake cuts this down to 1 3/4 inches and "feels" like a .243.....


So, after baselining the test and trying some other hunting rifles on the sled, some of which neared the 4" mark, I strapped the 11lb 338 down and yarked the string.





15 1/4 inches of recoil.......



HOley cow, I've got some work to do..... I was hoping to cut the rifle weight down a couple-three more pounds :):)


LOL


al

Al, you must be doing something wrong. I have a Lapua 338 Improved that will shoot the 300gr SMK at 3050fps with recoil like a 22 rimfire..................almost forgot to mention this rifle has a Vais brake and weighs 54 pounds.

UncleB
02-20-2012, 06:56 PM
I can't get the Sierras to go into one hole all the time.

Al, The problem with the 300gr Sierra's is that they vary greatly in bearing surface length from the same box of 500, as much as .011". If you segregate them by .002" they will go into one hole all the time.
If you want to borrow the measureing tool would be happy to let you use it.

alinwa
02-20-2012, 09:03 PM
Al, you must be doing something wrong. I have a Lapua 338 Improved that will shoot the 300gr SMK at 3050fps with recoil like a 22 rimfire..................almost forgot to mention this rifle has a Vais brake and weighs 54 pounds.

I'm thinking this must be a joke? ..............almost forgot to mention this rifle has a Vais brake and weighs 54 pounds.

Well, yeahhhh, at 54lb it WOULD recoil like a rimfire ;) even with a puny Vais brake...

This one is 11 pounds........ it does NOT recoil like a rimfire! Altho a clamshell makes it perfectly manageable.

And yes I've run the 300's up to over 3000fps even in the short barrel....

al

Dave Tooley
02-21-2012, 08:23 AM
Al

Be careful about unintended consequences. Muzzle gases exit at 7000-8000 FPS. Depending on your design, gas can and will pass the bullet and if given a chance will close in around the bullet and cause accuracy issues that will drive you nuts trying to figure out what's wrong.

Dave

alinwa
02-21-2012, 12:24 PM
Thank You Dave.... for the Voice Of Experience :)
al

bill larson
02-21-2012, 06:17 PM
What kind ( amount of ) clearence are you guys using beyond bullet diam....????.... I use .020".... i.e .308 cal.=.320"
Bill Larson

alinwa
02-21-2012, 09:24 PM
I use from 20 (.308= .328) to as much as 40thou (.308=.348)

al

BountyHunter
02-21-2012, 09:37 PM
Al

Be careful about unintended consequences. Muzzle gases exit at 7000-8000 FPS. Depending on your design, gas can and will pass the bullet and if given a chance will close in around the bullet and cause accuracy issues that will drive you nuts trying to figure out what's wrong.

Dave

OK Dave, which design tends to do that?

Inquiring minds want to know.:cool: