.338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community

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post #1 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 01:08 AM Thread Starter
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.338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

I'm looking for feedback on the .338 Winchester compared to the .375H&H. I've heard the recoil is pretty similar, with the .338 having a faster, sharper recoil. The .375 is said to have more of a firm push. The rifles are both Browning Stalkers with the BOSS and muzzle brakes. Anyone have experience with these?

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post #2 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 01:27 AM
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

Depends on what your target is. 375 is not necessary for any North American game except Brown Bear. 338 kicks worse in my opinion, once you shoot a 375 a little you wonder what you were afraid of. 338 is good for a headache and sore shoulder after 10 rounds, but also the best elk medicine ever made. With a boss, its more noise than recoil. Those things will make you deaf if your not careful.

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post #3 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 01:32 AM
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

dont know about the browning stalker, but iam a huge fan of the 338, have a rem and ruger, the good thing about the 338 over the 375 is u can shoot 160 grain up to 300 grain out of the 338, that could take you to deer, up to grizzly, recoil is a little bit more with the 375, but in the field you wont feel anything when shooting at game anyhow. if it was me the 338 would be my pick, good luck.
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post #4 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 02:12 AM
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

I have never seen where all the hooplah has come from over the .338 Win Mag's "legendary and horrible" recoil. Always thought the .338 came back at me about the same as any of the .300 Mags.

In identical rifles, the .375 H&H recoils, on average, 25% more than the .338 (about 42 lbs vs 32 lbs) The H&H also recoils about 2 ft/sec faster than the .338 and generates about 1/2 lb/sec more impulse.

That being said........ neither one is particularly hateful to shoot. I've shot a pair of H&H's in the A-Bolt Stalker and it's a good combo. A Limbsaver pad will also help a good deal. Neither rifle was comped or had the BOSS system. So I cannot comment to the added blast.


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post #5 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 02:13 AM
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

I disagree totally about some of the recoil info posted here. I think the .375 is worse. I have a .338 Win Mag in a Ruger Hawkeye and shoot 250 grain bullets out of it. It is a pussycat to me. No problem at all. I have shot deer, black bear, several caribou, moose and a grizzly with the .338 Win Mag and find it to be a very effective killer of game. It absolutely flattened my grizzly in it's tracks. Obviously, the .375 is effective also. I have shot several eland in Africa, a gemsbok, a blesbok and an imapla with my PH's Musgrave .375 H&H. I would not say the recoil is punishing, but to me it is more than the .338. A .375 is unnecessary in North America. The .338 is more vesatile, a shorter action, has more readily available ammo and is good for any game in North america.

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post #6 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 11:13 AM
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

I owned 2 rifles in .338 mag and did not find them too bad on recoil. They do jump a bit more than my .300 Win but not much. I know a guy from South Carolina who patented his own style of muzzle break and claims his .375 is like a .308. I have not had the pleasure of trying one of them.

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post #7 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 12:11 PM
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

If you're going to have a muzzle break, the recoil isn't an issue. If you plan on shooting either one without the break you'll definatly notice a difference in recoil. When you are shooting 300 grain bullets at near max loads the recoil is punishing on the 375H&H, and anyone that says differently hasn't shot one. Both are great cartgidges and will serve you well. Quite honestly, both are overkill for North American Hunting. I personnaly like the 375H&H over the 338, no real reason other than if you wanted to kill anything in the world you wouldn't be under gunned. I did shoot a whitetail with mine once, not a real impressive kill, the partition didn't open up on such a small thin skinned animal.
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post #8 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 12:27 PM
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

Lots of good advice given. I might add that its very different off the bench than in the field. The weight of the gun has alot to do with the recoil as well. There are 6 pound 338's and 7 pound 375's out there. Without a muzzlebreak, you don't want to meet them. With a Boss, it should be very noisy and expensive fun to shoot either one. I can assure you this, either gun off a bench with no brake, not many tough guys will take a box of shells from either caliber, MHO.

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post #9 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 01:07 PM Thread Starter
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

Thanks for the great feedback! It's always good to hear from guys who have "been there, done that". The hunt will be for Russian brown bear, if that makes a difference. Not quite sure how I feel about hunting something that can hunt me back, if you know what I mean.

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post #10 of 42 (permalink) Old 03-10-2012, 01:33 PM
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Re: .338 Win Mag vs. .375 H&H

Either cartridge will serve you well on that hunt. Pick the one you prefer and buy it. Personally, I would leave the brake. It will deaf you and is not worth the bother. Shooting at game in the field, you will not even notice any recoil.

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