With that in mind, the 325 WSM is a better choice for situations where very large and tough game like sambar deer or moose are likely to be encountered at close range. Propellant held firmly in place in that manner burns evenly. On the other hand, if a light weight rifle is less important and if you don’t have any issues with a standard length rifle action or just prefer an older and more established cartridge with a larger variety of ammo and rifle choices, then go with the .300 Win Mag. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction; that is one of the physical laws of our universe. Below are the averages for all forty rounds that we compiled for this article. The particular 300 WSM load above shoots the same weight bullet at very nearly the same muzzle velocity (over 99% as fast), but uses about 8.5% less powder. So your rifle is going to be a major factor in the velocity of these rounds being a pro or con.
What’s the point of using a round if it can’t be put on target?
The situation with rifles in is pretty similar. Interestingly enough, a .323″ bullet diameter is exactly halfway between the .308″ bullets used by the 300 WSM and .300 Win Mag on one hand, and the .338″ bullets used by the .338 Win Mag on the other. Note: these are not the only broad categories of rifle actions. If your particular rifle can handle them, then it’s not an issue at all. The .338 Winchester Magnum and 325 Winchester Short Magnum cartridges have similar, external ballistics, especially at ranges inside 300 yards. We are not under the impression, nor do we want to make the impression, that all rounds available are going to fall within this range. They’re both great cartridges and I’d personally say that the 325 WSM is the second most appealing choice out of the Winchester Short Magnum line (behind the 300WSM). In this graph, we are looking at the bullet drop (inches) at the 200 and 300-yard mark. It’s nothing we can look at with these ten rounds under our criteria, but it’s something we thought you would like to take into consideration and research a little more on your own.
The answers to the above questions really depend on the rifle, ammunition, and shooter in question though. The 325 WSM also has a slightly higher maximum SAAMI pressure than the .338 Winchester Magnum (65,000psi vs 64,000psi).Unlike all the other comparisons in this article, the 325 WSM and .338 Win Mag use different sized bullets. In the table below, we have listed the averages of the forty rounds we compiled and their short range trajectory numbers.
Deeper penetration is not always an indicator of a better cartridge. It did just that, driving .30 caliber bullets (within reason) at similar velocities to the belted .300 Winchester, but it’s not as simple as that. Both of these cartridges were designed to be able to reach out at far distances and be able to still carry enough kinetic energy and punching power to kill the target on impact and large targets at that. The 1929 edition of the same textbook stated, in addition, that recoil velocity should not exceed 15 fps; above that velocity a gun-headache was very likely to occur.
In addition to potentially giving up a little bit of magazine capacity due to the fat and stubby design of the 325 WSM cartridge, those same traits (along with the cartridge’s very steep shoulder angle) can sometimes present feeding problems. You won’t see this reduced powder charge reflected in factory ammunition prices, but if you handload and shoot hundreds of rounds a year, you can save a few dollars with the 300 WSM. The reduced recoil — if Mr. Newton of apple-falling fame was correct in his prediction that for every action there is an opposite, equal reaction – will be slightly less in the WSM because there may be 5 to 7 fewer grains of powder. The .300 Winchester Short Magnum comes with other issues. The .300 Win Mag rounds do have around an extra 40-50fps at each range marker.
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