.300 Win Mag vs .300 WSM

Discussion in 'The Ammo & Reloading Forum' started by eyezlo, Feb 2, 2009.

  1. eyezlo

    eyezlo New Member

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    I recently ordered a .300 WSM by Savage Arms at Dick's Sporting goods. The guy sold me the ammo for it also. The ammo was Winchester .300 Win Mag. Is this the correct ammo?
  2. cycloneman

    cycloneman Active Member

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    No. The 300 short mag and the 300 win mag are 2 different animals. The short mag has a short case and the 300 win mag has a long case.
  3. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    100% correct.
  4. The Rifleman

    The Rifleman Former Guest

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    My advice is not to buy the short magnum.

    Since it is apparent that you do not know much about guns, I will give you a short lesson on Short Magnums.

    If you talk to any real gun expert, they will tell you that gun technology has not progressed much since the 1950's and the .300 Winchester Magnum.

    The 30/06 Government is the cartridge that was the model for the .50 Browning machine gun. All they did was make it bigger. The gun manufactures at the time knew that since the 30/06 did everything they wanted it to do and was a good design, that all they had to do was make it bigger and it would work the same way.

    The .300 Winchester Magnum is a belted cartridge - which means that it has a belt - small piece of brass that goes the whole way around the brass cartridge - which does absolutely nothing except make it harder to resize and reload. It does not improve the performance of the cartridge one bit.

    The .300 Winchester does shoot faster, further and a little better - with heavier bullets than a 30/06 govt. does with a 150 gr. round. The .300 Winchester Magnum does it's best work with a 180 gr. bullet.

    The .300 WSM ( Winchester Short Magnum) is nothing more than a old elephant gun cartridge, shortened and necked down to .308 The same diameter as the 30/06 Govt. and the .300 Winchester Magnum.

    The only advantage to a short magnum is that the powder is in a bigger jug, which allows them to use a short action on the rifle. It also helps it to burn a little better with a magnum primer - because like I said - it is in a bigger jug. Think about it like this - milk comes in a quart, half gallon and gallon jug. They will all pour a cup of milk. The gallon jug will pour it out a little bit faster - because of the weight of the milk inside of the jug is pushing the milk towards the cap with more force in the gallon jug than it would in a quart jug - because the quart jug only has 2.1 lbs of milk in it. Where the gallon jug might have 8.4 lbs of milk in it.

    They will all kill a deer or an elk or a moose. Just that the Short magnum will have a little bit more force behind the bullet than the 30/06 or the 300 Winchester magnum has.

    The downfall of this cartridge is that it does a lot of damage to a thin skinned animal like a white tail deer. Not something that is desirable for anyone that is a meat hunter.

    The gun will kick more, which will make it more uncomfortable to shoot, which will lead to less accuracy.

    The price of the ammo is as much as 4 times the price of a box of 30/06 shells and almost double that of some of the .300 Winchester Magnum. Not the kind of gun you would want to have - if you desired to go to a shooting range and shoot off 4 or 5 boxes of ammo in a weekend.

    The short magnum is nothing more than a fad and will disappear in a couple of years and will never be seen again. Browning / Winchester brought it out, only to sell more guns. There is only so many ways you can reinvent the wheel.
  5. 300 H&H

    300 H&H Active Member

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    The .300 Winchester Magnum is a belted cartridge - which means that it has a belt - small piece of brass that goes the whole way around the brass cartridge - which does absolutely nothing except make it harder to resize and reload. It does not improve the performance of the cartridge one bit. end quote...

    Not quite right.....The belt is there to headspace the cartridge, and to streghthen the head of the case. More and thicker brass is stonger, especially if the chamber end of the case is not toatally enclosed, like in the pre 64 M70 Win, or several other bolt actions. The H&H "belt" was intended at first to be used in break open action express rifles. It is still used today for proper headspacing of the case. It does not interfere with resizing the case, or reloading in any way. Best regards Kirk
  6. The Rifleman

    The Rifleman Former Guest

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    Kirk,

    I have 10 boxes of reloaded .300 Winchester Magnum ammo.

    They all have expansion on the belt, aprox .0015 - .002, and will not chamber in my firearm. Browning Pump Rifle.

    You can take the ram of the press and put it against the die - RCBS and it does nothing to the belt.

    Engineers - 30 years ago, realized that the belt does absolutely nothing and that it was nothing but a gimmick.
  7. 300 H&H

    300 H&H Active Member

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    I beg to differ,

    The belt is there for the reason I stated, to head space on and because they came from break action rifles (double rifles) that have a shotgun type exractor that doesn't work with a rimless case. You should become more informed about this, as you are mistaken. The short mag types say the belt is a gimmick, and try to sell you a new rifle....If you exceed the preasure of your rifles action, and the head expanded it is because you OVER loaded the casing on the previous loading. Or for another possible reason, the casing exceeded max lenght becase it was not trimmed, and caused an over preasure situation. This is what causes case heads to grow, as any advanced reloader knows. It has nothing to do with the belt....And since you did not take time to discover this by measurement, or tring a few before you loaded 10 boxes, well I leave that one alone....:p Some folks have all the answers:rolleyes:;).....Best regards Kirk
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2009
  8. The Rifleman

    The Rifleman Former Guest

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    Kirk,
    You are an idiot

    All of the reloads I have, are once fired Winchester and Federal and Remington once fired cases.

    If they were reloaded wrong, it was done wrong at the factory, because once they were fired, they became oversized. The brass I have - came from 3 different guns. The problem is - if you knew anything about guns - was that the Browning Pump Rifle was only made for a couple of years.

    300 Winchester Magnum and 7 mm Remington magnum was their only two offerings in a magnum.

    I highly doubt if 3 different manufacturers intentionally loaded their factory ammo beyond a safe limit.

    I do believe that when the bore of the rifle was hard chromed that it was not reamed properly and that it is a little tight. Nothing to worry about with original factory shells, but a problem with reloaded ammo.

    Heat, along with pressure from the discharge of the cartridge is what caused the brass to grow. All ammo grows some when it is fired the first time. That is why you have to trim brass and check everything before it is reloaded and shot again.

    The belt, does absolutely nothing - to improve the performance of the cartridge. It does not make the base of the shell stronger and it does not allow it to have more chamber pressure and it probably doesn't do much in the way of making a temporary seal - for the couple of thousandths of a second that the powder is in the shell - when it is fired.

    There is no reason for the belt to be on the .300 Winchester Magnum shell - other than like you said, if someone wanted to use some over glorified British double rifle.

    Just for the sake of your information, if you were hunting dangerous game - you wouldn't use a 300 Winchester magnum, you would use a .338 Winchester magnum. There is very little that will walk away from being shot with a .338, even just one time! Double guns were designed at a time when the best gun you could get was maybe a Mauser type bolt action or a single shot. The thought behind that was that two shots were better then one.

    I can pump out 4 shots from my Browning Pump rifle - before you could shoot 3 from your double rifle.

    Also for the record, I don't like short magnums - because the shell is so big that the most you can hold in the gun is 4. 3 in the clip and one in the chamber. The same exact rifle with a clip will hold (5) 30/06 shells.

    I have a .270 Winchester Short magnum - Browning A bolt Medallion and I only hunted whitetail deer with it once, because it does too much damage to the carcass.

    I like to eat deer meat, but I don't want it to come pre chewed!
  9. 300 H&H

    300 H&H Active Member

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    As for me being...what you said,

    This type of thing is not permitted here....

    Since 1920 the belted casing has been used in all types of actions, in all types of weather, hunting, target shooting, and thousand upon thousands of shots, and happy users have had no trouble with them...Oh but you know soo much more than anyone here right! Did you happen to come here for another forum, and why? I bet I know:D....I'm done with you sir....
  10. muddober

    muddober Active Member

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    Rifleman: Hey guys I am probably the "idiot" for jumping in here but with all due respect we all have varying opinions and name calling is simply not fair game just because we don't agree. Rifleman, the reason your pump gun won't handle the reloads is because you need to us special dies when loading any belted case in the Browning auto loader or pump gun. The dies have an different designation marked right on the box, I have a set for 300 Win Mag for when I used to have a BAR and I would look but my reloading room is at my office and I am home.

    Interestingly enough I agree in part with both of you and I disagree in part. The purpose/reason for the belt is exactly what 300 H&H said. The bad part is that all belted cartridges head space on the belt and not the shoulder meaning if you only neck size there is a good chance that ammo will only chamber in the gun from where it was shot. Belted ammo can and has caused feeding problems in magazine rifles. The belt adds nothing to the strength of the case because it is behind the powder charge and not along side of it. I have read and I agree that Weatherby was responsible for the belted magnum mania and I for one am glad to see that for the most part the new magnums are devoid the belt. I have been playing with the 416 Rigby(came out in 1911) before it became vogue for the second time in its life in the last 15 years or so. I shoot a 400 grain from my rifle at 2800 fps producing over 7000 ft lbs of energy which is well over any factory belted cartridge. Also several of the double rifle manufacturers are now offering the 416 Rigby even though it has no belt. In closing I have read several post by 300 H&H and as here while I may not always 100% agree with him he certainly is no idiot and neither are you.
  11. GMFWoodchuck

    GMFWoodchuck New Member

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    To answer your question without going on a belt tangent. No, the guy sold you the wrong stuff. You need .300 WSM ammo. WSM is short for winchester short magnum. They are the same lengths (about) as the 308. The 300 winchester mag ammo you bought is a much longer shell and will never go into the action as they are the same (about again) as the 30-06.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2009
  12. 300 H&H

    300 H&H Active Member

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  13. GMFWoodchuck

    GMFWoodchuck New Member

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    Interesting read even with the mistakes that are in it.
  14. MuleyJ

    MuleyJ New Member

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    I guess I could be proven wrong, but I was under the impression that the belt on "belted magnum" cartridges was designed by H&H specifically for the 300 H&H and later the 375 H&H. The reason being the very shallow shoulder angle made it impossible to headspace off the shoulder as every other bolt action chambering had done before. After that time, for some unknown reason, every "magnum" had the belt as some were parented by the 300 H&H. However, this belt was not necessary to headspace on as most of these cases had more than enough shoulder to headspace on, as has been proven by multiple firearm manufacturers in recent years. The big problem with the belted magnums is that when the cartridge is headspaced from the belt the case is pulled away from the front of the chamber and when fired is allowed to stretch forward toward the front of the chamber. A majority of this stretching usually takes place directly ahead of the belt, and full length resizing compounds the problem. This leads to thinning of the case wall, case head seperation and reduces the number of times the belted cases may be reused as compared to a non-belted case. So, in my opinion the belt on a cartridge is actually a weakness in a case not a strength. That being said the 300 Win. mag is a spectacular cartridge, I love mine, but the cost of reloading is slightly higher due to shorter case life.
  15. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

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    Muley +1 and welcome to TFF ! You are correct though that H&H were the first to use a belt on a cartridge, but it was not a magnum and was not a 300. The first to use a belt was a non-mag .400/375 in 1905.
    Weatherby would the ones responsible for starting the "Belted Mag Craze" though, they brought it to the masses.
  16. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

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    By the way, I did happen to pick up some Weatherby .375 H&H Mag Ultra-Velo at the gun show last month. I bought it only to add a couple of rounds to my collection of ammo and the price was right. If anyone locally is interested, I've got 10 rounds left. I gave the others away to friends that wanted one to put on their display also. I'm not sure how much UPS shipping would be, probably more than the round is worth; but if you're going through the Waco area or if I'm in the Dallas/Austin areas; we could meet up at one of the local gun shops and I'd be happy to give you one for your collection. Doesn't take much to twist my arm and get me out to the gun shop or show.
  17. Claude Clay

    Claude Clay New Member

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    i dont own one but i recall an artical that mentioned the belt being added to prevent the magnum case from being chambered in some rifles [ i dont remember which ones] but were too powerful to fire safely. so a belt was added to the magnum to prevent them from being chambered.
  18. MuleyJ

    MuleyJ New Member

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    Well that didn't take long! You learn something every day on these forums, and thank you for the warm welcome. The 300 H&H was the first belted "magnum" in the US, (375 was chambered 13 years before it but was only introduced by US gumakers later) and along with the 375 H&H are the only "magnum" cartridges to actually need a belt. I have never seen the cartridge you speak of. Any links to a pic or article, now I'm interested.
  19. woolleyworm

    woolleyworm Active Member

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    H&H patented the belted cartridge in 1904, production was in 1905.

    From : Holland and Holland 'The Royal' Gunmaker" by D.Dallas


    Interesting article on the .375:

    Guns Magazine article by Clair Rees in the July 2000 issue. Pg 70

    From Africa to Alaska, this tough old cartridge can handle nearly any creature that walks the face of the earth.
    The .375 Holland & Holland Magnum is a cartridge that stirs men's souls. It evokes romance and high adventure, a reminder of exotic lands where hunters risk death or dismemberment from tusk, hoof, fang or claw.
    When the cartridge was introduced in 1912, African hunting was still basking in its golden age. The .375 H&H was the first cartridge to deliver real big-game power and performance from a medium-bore bolt rifle. It soon became an all-around favorite for African hunting.

    While the .375 is considered underpowered for buffalo and elephant today, it has killed countless numbers of these big, hardy beasts. This time-proven magnum continues to enjoy widespread use in Africa and is a popular choice for hunting Alaska's huge coastal grizzlies.
    A milestone in cartridge development, the .375 H&H introduced the magnum concept to an eager world of power-hungry riflemen. It wasn't the world's first belted cartridge. That distinction belongs to the .400/375 Belted Nitro Express introduced in 1905. Less potent than the .375, Holland & Holland's belted .400/375 was never very popular with African hunters and was discontinued in 1938.

    Stretching The Belt
    Why was a belted cartridge needed? When the .375 was being developed, most British rounds were loaded with Cordite, an early smokeless propellant that tended to deteriorate in the African heat. Such deterioration could escalate pressures when the ammo was fired.
    To minimize such problems. H&H wanted a cartridge large enough to generate desired velocities at moderate pressures, providing an important safety margin. Originally loaded to mid-40,000 c.u.p. pressures, modern .375 H&H Mag. factory ammunition can safely reach industry-standard maximums of 53,000 c.u.p.

    To insure trouble-free extraction, the case was designed with a long, smooth taper. This left the cartridge with a minimal shoulder, creating a headspacing problem. The long, tapered round couldn't be counted on to headspace reliably on the shoulder alone. If a cartridge was chambered too vigorously, the shallow shoulder might fail, causing the round to move forward in the chamber and preventing the firing pin from striking the primer with a solid blow.

    Misfires aren't acceptable in a dangerous game rifle, so another answer had to be found. A rimmed cartridge would do the trick, but that presented feeding difficulties from a box-type magazine. The solution was an encircling belt the company had already invented.
    Used on a rimless case, the belt rode just forward of the extractor groove. When the cartridge was chambered, this raised band rested against an abutment at the rear of the chamber to provide positive headspace.
    The .375 H&H Mag. was an extremely successful design. It functioned reliably in bolt-action Express rifles and quickly proved deadly on all but the largest game. It also delivered flatter trajectory than other cartridges intended for serious African hunting.

    The .375 Goes West
    Almost immediately after it was introduced, the .375 H&H Mag. was a big success with British hunters on the dark continent. Its popularity soon spread to the United States. Enough American sportsmen adopted the round that the Western Cartridge Company began offering .375 H&H Mag. factory ammo in 1925. A dozen years later Winchester produced a .375 H&H version of its Model 70 rifle, becoming the first major American arms maker to chamber the round.

    In 1925, Holland & Holland necked the big, belted .375 case down to accept .30-caliber bullets. The .300 H&H, or "Holland's Super 30" was born. After winning the 1,000 yard Wimbledon Cup Match in 1935, the .300 H&H Mag. became a favorite of longrange shooters.
    By the early 1940s, Roy Weatherby had begun experimenting with the .300 and .375 H&H cartridges. He gave the case a more pronounced shoulder, then necked it down to accept smaller caliber bullets. The resulting .270, 7mm, .257 and .300 Weatherby Magnums delivered sizzling velocities and launched Weatherby to fame and fortune.

    Weatherby's success in promoting his powerful high-speed, flat-shooting cartridges set the stage for all the belted magnums that later followed.

    The .270 Wthby.Mag. was the first American magnum. It wouldn't be the last.

    Half-Ton Bears And H&H
    While Weatherby, Winchester and other manufacturers have developed a growing variety of domestic magnums, Holland's big, belted .375 has long been the cartridge of choice for hunting Alaska's giant grizzlies. Alaska bear guide Ed Stevenson likes to get his clients as close as possible before they pull the trigger. He'll guide hunters who show up in camp carrying a .338 Win. Mag., but he's a lot happier when they're toting a .375 H&H, the cartridge he always recommends. It's also the round he relies on to prevent annoyed bruins from chewing up paying clients.
    As a deer-hunting teenager, I longed to travel north in search of half-ton bears. I dreamed of the day I could hunt with a .375 H&H Mag. rifle. The long, belted .375 was the cartridge that automatically came to mind whenever I thought of hunting gargantuan grizzlies on Kodiak Island or anywhere along the Alaskan coast.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2009
  20. 308 at my gate

    308 at my gate New Member

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    So with all that has been said so far about belted magnums. Do they still headspace off of the belt or not? I was always under the impression from reading my reloading books that they do.