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Thread: Insight / Discussion RE magnum calibres for mountain rifle

  1. #1
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    Insight / Discussion RE magnum calibres for mountain rifle

    Hey team,

    I'm basically a self taught hunter and still (and always will) have a lot to learn in all areas.

    I'm currently shooting a nice Carbonlight 7mm mag with a big 3-18 VX6HD scope. This has been a fantastic rifle, I really like it. Smacked a variety of quality animals over the last while. Max I have stretched this out to is 410yards, this is my longest shot in all the years I have been hunting. The rifle weighs 3.8KG scoped and is fitted with a muzzel brake.

    I'm doing a lot more hunting on the coast which involves more close quater action. I'm regularly backpack hunting for at least a week doing some pretty serious miles and obviously every gram counts.

    I seem to think that a 7mm mag setup like this is a bit overkill. I have recently missed 2 big bull tahr on the coast when doing a standing shot in the scrub, still haunts me. The rifle felt a bit big / awkward to use for these situations.

    I have been considering something like a 260 or 6.5CM as a more of a light weight package with a smaller scope, possibly a VX3. This would weigh around 3.1kg scoped. I don't want to suppress the rifle as I would be lucky to shoot one round on a trip.

    Surely a 143gr proj (out of a 6.5) compared to a 162gr eldx running similar FPS will not make much of a difference if the max I'm shooting out to is around 500?

    Excuse my ignorance, any insight would be welcome. Thought I'd bounce my thoughts to those who are experienced with different calibres and their potential.

    Here's a cool photo from just prior to the whole valley being devastated by gunships
    Name:  20200820_211802.jpg
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    Last edited by hotsoup; 17-09-2020 at 01:56 PM.
    jakewire, outdoorlad, NRT and 22 others like this.

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    i shoot 140 from 7mmRM, works a treat and very flat

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    Quote Originally Posted by gonetropo View Post
    i shoot 140 from 7mmRM, works a treat and very flat
    Meaning a 143gr out of a 260 compared to a 162gr out of a 7mm mag

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    Awesome photo @hotsoup, I hunt by myself most of the time & find it hard to get a good pic with a Thar, haha be a lot harder now lol !
    Woody, timattalon and hotsoup like this.

  5. #5
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    now me being a tight arse.....try a different scope on the 7mm you have.....50 quid to knob of goat shit if feels wrong for that standing shot because you have piss poor field of view 3x plenty low enough,something else wrong here..... try a few standing shots...doesnt matter what you shooting at,milk bottles or paper plates its getting yourself used to doing itthat matters. and the above suggestion of a lighter load in 7mm mag isnt silly for the spook n shoot or standing shots...no point in knocking your self around with recoil when not needed.
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    Another option is you could shorten the RM? It will then do your close quarter stuff more easily whilst still having ample going for it in the open country. I am loving my RM in this form at the moment. So nice to carry, shoot and use.

    But yea something like a 6.5/260 would be mint. Drop it back to 18" and keep a suppressor on it. So much nicer to use but still got plenty of legs for the range of shots you want to make.
    hotsoup likes this.

  7. #7
    By Popular Demand gimp's Avatar
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    Ive been hunting with only moderate 6.5s shooting 140-147 gr Amax or ELDM at 2700ish fps for 10+ years now continuously (except for starting to use a .223 now) and have never felt that it was inadequate or lost an animal due to the cartridge/bullet not performing. 3-5 deer a year on average + chamois/tahr. Longest kills in 500-600m bracket.

    I did use the 143gr ELDX out of my 260 for maybe 3 deer and a few tahr and found it didn't work as well for my preferred shot placement and speed I was loading at as the softer Amax and ELDM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stagstalker View Post
    Another option is you could shorten the RM? It will then do your close quarter stuff more easily whilst still having ample going for it in the open country. I am loving my RM in this form at the moment. So nice to carry, shoot and use.

    But yea something like a 6.5/260 would be mint. Drop it back to 18" and keep a suppressor on it. So much nicer to use but still got plenty of legs for the range of shots you want to make.
    Yeah good thoughts. I cant cut the barrel on a sako carbonlight, that wouldn't go down well haha. Prefer to sell as original
    Moa Hunter likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gimp View Post
    Ive been hunting with only moderate 6.5s shooting 140-147 gr Amax or ELDM at 2700ish fps for 10+ years now continuously (except for starting to use a .223 now) and have never felt that it was inadequate or lost an animal due to the cartridge/bullet not performing. 3-5 deer a year on average + chamois/tahr. Longest kills in 500-600m bracket.

    I did use the 143gr ELDX out of my 260 for maybe 3 deer and a few tahr and found it didn't work as well for my preferred shot placement and speed I was loading at as the softer Amax and ELDM.
    Awesome that's what I was hoping to hear. My only concern was not being confident that a 260/6.5cm would be adequate for my needs.

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    Reducing rifle weight will make your offhand shooting worse not better everything else being equal. Practise, particularly with a 22 will probably reward you better than changing rifles.

    I think the current "fashion" for big scopes adversely effects a rifles balance, makes a lot of rifles top heavy and I took the VX5 of my Tahr rifle for that reason, a fine scope but it was a handicap.
    ebf, Dama dama, Woody and 2 others like this.

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    you said longest shot has been 410 yards.......the humble .308 or mighty poohseventy would do that all day long with one hand tied behind back....sometimes I reckon we overthink shit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Micky Duck View Post
    you said longest shot has been 410 yards.......the humble .308 or mighty poohseventy would do that all day long with one hand tied behind back....sometimes I reckon we overthink shit.
    yeah exactly. I'm no long range hunter thats for sure. Far prefer getting at least within 500 which makes me feel like 7mm isn't really necessary

  13. #13
    By Popular Demand gimp's Avatar
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    Rifle setup does make a difference; however I've had S&B PMII, Leupold Mk6 and Mk4 (600-850gm scopes) on top of rifles that are 2.5-2.7kg bare and they balance fine, possibly it's not set up right as far as eye relief or the stock may be too long for you if you're a shorter bloke.

  14. #14
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    When you start getting out around 4-500 and beyond its impact speeds, retained energy and wind drift that start becoming important. That's where the more efficient cartridges assist the shooter. Most cartridges will all do it, but some will be more forgiving when the shooter makes an error on things like the wind. I've made wrong wind calls at 400 with my good 7mm that results in a shot back behind the shoulder just connecting lung. Had that been a cartridge not as effective in those conditions I would have had a gutshot deer as an example. it is definitely a rabbit hole and we definitely over think it a lot but there's is also plenty of merit to over thinking it as well. A fine balance between the two haha.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by gimp View Post
    Rifle setup does make a difference; however I've had S&B PMII, Leupold Mk6 and Mk4 (600-850gm scopes) on top of rifles that are 2.5-2.7kg bare and they balance fine, possibly it's not set up right as far as eye relief or the stock may be too long for you if you're a shorter bloke.
    Agree with this. I've never had an issue with bigger scopes like my VX5 effecting balance as they sit directly over the action central on the rifle. I have found more issues in poor eye relief or stocks that I don't like the feeling of or long barrels with suppressors hanging off the end etc.

 

 

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