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.338 Federal ??
 Moderated by: Slingshot, Rockydog, klallen, DesertMarine, -6
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 Posted: Sat Jan 18th, 2014 08:24 PM
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Ionian
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Anyone have experience with the .338 Federal? I hate to see the caliber die, but it seems that it is already in the grave. I would consider it the ultimate caliber for all species in N. America in a bolt action rifle. I know that it won't shoot flat across 3 states, but any responsible hunter will get as close as possible to wild game so 300 yards is plenty reach for a hunting rifle in my opinion.



 Posted: Sat Jan 18th, 2014 09:20 PM
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Charley



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.338 Federal looks interesting, but already have its older brother, the .338 Whelen. I'm sure the .338 Federal can do anything it can do, and it can do a lot!



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 Posted: Sat Jan 18th, 2014 09:36 PM
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klallen



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Ionian wrote: Anyone have experience with the .338 Federal? I hate to see the caliber die, but it seems that it is already in the grave. I would consider it the ultimate caliber for all species in N. America in a bolt action rifle. I know that it won't shoot flat across 3 states, but any responsible hunter will get as close as possible to wild game so 300 yards is plenty reach for a hunting rifle in my opinion.


in my opinion, the cartridge was really up against it from the start.  small case, small powder capacity, small power.  just wasn't a whole heck of alot there to fall back on.

regarding your definition of the "ultimate" cartridge for all species of north american game or the parameters that constitute a "responsible" hunter     ...     i respect your opinion, but politely disagree on both counts.

 

k



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 Posted: Sat Jan 18th, 2014 10:48 PM
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SansSouci
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I wonder what would have happened to the 7MM Rem Mag if Remington had offered the .280 Rem in its Model 700 line and loaded to its potential.

The reality is consumers decide which cartridges survive. There is a lot of duplication in cartridges. The very good 6MM Rem couldn't compete with the excellent .243 Win. I've read not all that long ago that the .308 Win has surpassed the deservedly venerated '06. A hunter carrying an '06 has all that he needs for any North American game. But then again, the same could be said for many other cartridges, especially the .280 Rem & .308 Win.

I don't know much about the .338 Federal, but from what I don know, it seems well-suited for all North American game at intermediate ranges. I think it'd really shine in a Model 88 or Browning type lever action.

Last edited on Sat Jan 18th, 2014 10:48 PM by SansSouci



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 Posted: Sat Jan 18th, 2014 11:19 PM
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mtman714
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I have the ballistic twin 338-284S, the 284 Win.case shortened and the shoulder set back, picked it up years ago, a fellow shooter put it together back in the early 70's, on a short action MD 700, had the barrel re bored, to .338, best groups run 1.25 to 1.5 at 100yds, used it to take a muley buck at about 60dys, carries easy, use it for elk in the timber, with 210 Nosler Par., and 215 Sierra, use.338 Fed for load data, case holds the same amount of water, just goes to show nothing is really new.



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 Posted: Sat Jan 18th, 2014 11:44 PM
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Ionian
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The cartridge has a lot going for it. .338 bullets have a high BC, the cartridge is easy and cheap to make from the parent case, and 200 grain bullets leaving the barrel close to 2500 fps is plenty for big game out to at least 300 yards.



 Posted: Sat Jan 18th, 2014 11:55 PM
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SavageShooter



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338 Federal would be a nice short action big game cartridge for those who want to shoot bullets above 200gr, recoil would be mild compared to a Magnum cartridge. I've considered building one, but then common sense gets a hold of me and I let that thought of building one pass.

I figure it's a damn good cartridge for people who don't want Magnum recoil but want the energy that a .338 caliber bullet can deliver on game.



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 Posted: Sun Jan 19th, 2014 01:01 AM
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RHC
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One day, I might have a custom barrel in .338 Federal put on a Remington 7 Synthetic or CDL. That would be a nice rifle.



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 Posted: Mon Jan 20th, 2014 01:28 PM
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Rockworx
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I was looking into rebarreling my .308 Ruger scout to a .338 Federal. But in the end, I decided a 180gr bullet in .308 will do everything I needed (without the extra expense).



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 Posted: Mon Jan 20th, 2014 05:36 PM
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TMan51
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Ionian wrote: Anyone have experience with the .338 Federal?
Not a bit.  But I suspect it will not die, ultimate cartridge or not.  The availability of .308 brass will keep it alive forever.

When I bought my first 7-08 in the early 80's, the guys I hunted with predicted a total disaster for the round.  In retrospect, it did have a pretty flat start, and slowly gained momentum.  I'm wondering if the .338F might do the same over time.

The factor holding me back is a couple purpose designed bullets.  The .338-06 has enough go to get the lighter bullets to expand well, and the heavier bullets to penetrate deep.  The .338F, not so much.  By comparison, the .358 Winchester and .35 Whelen are blessed with bullets made for that power range.



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 Posted: Mon Jul 11th, 2016 03:40 AM
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horsecollar
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Notice that Federal factory ammo in the Fussion line and in the PowerShok line with 200 grain bullets state velocity @ 2700 fps. Looking for load data to duplicate those figures but none of the manuals or Loaddata.com show any loads with that high velocity.

Does anyone have recipes duplicating those figures in the .338 Federal? Also does anyone have a good load for a 225 grain bullet?



 Posted: Fri Apr 14th, 2017 11:52 PM
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2ndtimer
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You can get close with Ramshot TAC, or IMR-8208XBR. According to Alliant's loading data, you can surpass the Federal factory 200 gr load with a maximum load of their Power Pro 2000MR. I would take both the Federal factory load velocity with a grain of salt, and the Alliant velocity, likewise. Have found both to be optimistic based on my chronograph data.
We had good results with the Nosler 180 gr Accubond and IMR-8208XBR in a Ruger Hawkeye. I know this is late, but in case the original poster was curious, thought I would share some real world experience.



 Posted: Sun Apr 16th, 2017 04:57 PM
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SeabeeChief
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Never actually used it but I've read a lot about it. IMO, simply not enough case for the bullets size/wt. I opted for the 338 RCM which does great but the 338-06 should be awesome. The 06 case seems to be more efficient for the 338 caliber and factory hunting rifles are available for it. If you want a low recoil 338, the the federal round should fit the bill.

Ken



 Posted: Mon Apr 17th, 2017 11:32 PM
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MapleHill
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This caliber is much like many of the new(er) rounds introduced the last few years. Where does the 338 Federal fit in? Is it that much better than a 308...I mean really? But you could ask that question about dozens of rounds. 300WSM? THAT much better than the old tried and true 300 Win Mag? we could go on and on. What it amounts to is SELLING MORE...the manufacturers want the public to think they can't live without XYZ Magnum, marketing to a razor thin niche to sell more ammo, more rifles etc. Now as a lover of all things firearms and reloading, I don't, won't turn down a new opportunity to try loading and new toy, but trying to figure out where it fits is a moot point. The tried and true 30-06 has been killing game dead for over a century...is a 338 Federal gonna kill it deader? The makers are gonna keep introducing "new" stuff until the public stops buying it. e.g. the new Nosler offerings. Are they that much better than the Remington Ultra Mags? or the STW or heck, the old 264 Win Mag or 7mm Rem mag? How much farther can the average hunter shoot game reliably? But, they will be offered until they stop selling!



 Posted: Wed Apr 19th, 2017 11:49 PM
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msgtmike
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I have one in a Sako 85 stainless synthetic. Carries very nice and put the brakes on a mature PA whitetail buck a couple of years ago. First load I tried was Varget pushing a 200 gr CT ballistic tip. It held an inch at 100 yards. Load development done, took it hunting. Had a quartering towards me shot at 75-80 yards. Piled him up. Energy dump must have been massive as the bullet never hit the heart, yet the heart was rolling around freely in the chest cavity. I like it...but I like a lot of cartridges..

Semper Fi,
Mike



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