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Hello from Scotland~

As we all know these new cartridges are designed to sell us all new guns and to some exstint improve on existing cartridges.

There would appear to be a good accuracy potential and of course lighter shorter actions which may prove very useful in "mountain type rifles"

.223 WSSM
.243 WSSM
.270 WSM
7mm WSM
.300 WSM

Are avaible at present to my knowlegde.........what will be next to appear ??? Or will these new WSSM and WSM prove to be a fad ??

What "NEW" WSSM and WSM would you like to see ?? At present none of these new offerings will get my hard earned cash out of my wallet !
Although if Browning introduced a .260 WSM in there wonderful A-Bolt a reckon i would find it very hard to resist !

I reckon there could be a few guys round here who could be tempted by .35 WSM or perhaps a .338 WSM if they were introduced ?

What about wildcatters ??? What new options do you guys see if any in this new range of cartridges ?? What room is there for "IMPROVING" them ? ie: increased case life and powder capacity ??

Englander
 

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You will never see it from the manufacturers, but the fat little WSSM in medium to big bores (.338-.458) in a M70 Featherweight would give us bolt gun guys something light and compact but with some thump. You lever guys can not keep the fun to yourselves forever with your .444s and .45-70s. Darn it!

Fireplug
 

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Go ahead and get a LeverGun or two. There are enough to go around. Besides, I do have one bolt in the safe myself!
 

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You forgot to add Remingtons RSAUMs to the list. I agree that they won't get my money. I'd rather have the longer cartridge that they're replacing. Longer cases give you the flexiblity with heavier bullets than normal.

De Oppresso Liber
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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Understand the .243 Win WSSM isn't available at this time due to some sort of problems.

The main drawback with the short, fat magnums - according to some - has been encroachment of the powder capacity of the standard weight and heavier bullets. That the true potential of the cartridge can't be produced. The shorter action for these cartridges is deemed a good thing, reducing bolt throw and "weakness" of a springy longer bolt.

My 7mm Dakota qualifies as a short, fat magnum, being based on a cut-down, necked down .404 Jeffery case. It has more than enough powder space and it's loaded with 175 gr Hornady FBSP's! Of course, this is a customized Ruger M77 (old tang safety) with a new Shilen SS barrel replacing the older 7mm Rem Mag barrel. Had to open up the bolt face slightly and the guide rails, but these were no major jobs. True, this being the standard length action means the bullets can be seated out a little further for magazine clearance considerations than the short action WSM's and RUSM's. Don't really notice any "springiness" to the heavy Ruger bolt, either.

I'm a believer in the short, fat cases and think they do acheive better combustion with more efficiency than the older, longer tapered cases. A .260 WSM should equal the old .264 Win Mag - the same with a .351 WSM wouod equal the old .350 Rem Mag. Both known to be effective killers.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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If the lugs are at the front of the bolt, as nearly all modern bolt-action guns are, then the length of the bolt is of no consequence with regards to gun strength.

Whether the back end of the bolt would rattle around enough to affect barrel vibration, I don't know.
 

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The main drawback with the short, fat magnums - according to some - has been encroachment of the powder capacity of the standard weight and heavier bullets. That the true potential of the cartridge can't be produced. The shorter action for these cartridges is deemed a good thing, reducing bolt throw and "weakness" of a springy longer bolt.
This is what killed the original short magnum, the .284 Winchester, and is a load of horse ****e. It's time this myth was dispelled, but gun writers go on and on about it still. I believe there was an article about this in Handloader recently, showing it to be a joke. How much does a 160gr or 175gr bullet encroach on the powder capacity of the tremendously popular 7mm Rem Mag? When is the last time you EVER heard this mentioned?

kdub,
that's directed at the writers who continually repeat it, not you.

Englander,
I personally think the .270 and .300 WSM's will be here for quite some time, especially the .300. I think the velocity of the .300 speaks for itself despite bullet seating depth. It's not as though the current premium 180gr bullets won't perform better than the 200gr bullets of yesteryear that "eat up so much powder space" The 7mm WSM will not, in my opinion, gain much ground against the 7mm RemMag. The two WSSM's don't really appear to do anything too special, and have an alleged reputation for burning barrels from the early reports. You'd think Winchester would have learned the lesson with .264, perhaps that is what is causing the delay in production of the .243 WSSM: they did learn the lesson. I don't see a lot of room for "improvement" in the cartridges. They are short and fat and designed for maximum performance in a shorter than normal, for the power level, action. I would hazard a guess that, if it would feed and extract reliably, Winchester would have made them that way to start with. Of course they could have been afraid that the gunwriters would say a sharper shoulder, or less taper, could cause problems, even though the rifle functioned perfectly when tested. I see some potential for wildcatting these rounds. The .243 WSSM, in the latest form I've read of it, would probably do very well necked to .264 in a ultra light hunting rifle. I don't think we'll see it as a factory offering. .338 and .358 WSM? I think a lot of guys will make them, but I don't see it competing with the .338 Win Mag over the long term.
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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You're right on all points, kciH -

I agree with you completely, so no offense taken. My points are these:

Without new cartridges and hype, both gun rag writers and gun manufacturers will face very lean times, indeed. Now, what these folks are doing today has been done in the past by the manufacturers (to wit: .284 Win and .350 Rem Mag) and countless wildcatters. Everyone wants to monkey with the perfectly good cartridges on the market. to name a few: 7mm Mauser, 30-06 Spfld, .300 Win Mag. There are so many variations of these fine rounds the list would be overwhelming.

As I've stated in another thread of this nature, when Lazzaroni, Dakota Arms, Kenny Jarrett and others began building their proprietary chambered rifles and capturing an increasing share of market, the big name manufacturers felt this was a viable market to tap into. Hence, their R&D departments came out with the "short" and "ultra short" cases using the old faithful .404 Jeffery to build on.

Again, I'm a proponent of the short, fat cases - but, if I had a perfectly good rifle already chambered in the standard cartridges I wouldn't rush out to sell it to buy one of the new WSM's or RUM's. As you say, there's absolutely nothing wrong with the existing cartridges and the new short jobs are hard pressed to equal or exceed them. The only true advantage is the shorter action, with resultant less weight and shorter bolt throw. Personally, when shooting "magnums" I prefer as much weight in the rifle as reasonable to lug around.
A small disadvantage with the short magnums is loss of magazine capacity by one round. Sometimes this has meaning, sometimes not. I never load any magazine type firearm to max capacity, anyway.
 

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I stopped by one of the better known competition gunsmith's in Alaska today and he was fooling around with a 270 WSM necked down to to 264, no other changes made. The reason for doing it is because he is such a fan of the 6.5mm rounds for long range competition. He was measuring throat erosion on a Lilija cryo treated stainless barrel in the new chambering. He was getting more than .006 erosion in the throats every 20 rounds! It sounds like the same problems Winchester is experiencing with the 243 WSSM and 223 WSSM. Those short fat cases do have their place, but maybe not when necked down so small.
 

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Alyeska,
you and I think alike on this matter. I shoot a .270 Wthby, and it is an overbore cartridge, I believe the .270 & 7mm WSM are also, albeit more efficient that the Wthby. I think the .300 is a near perfect all around, minus your big bears, cartridge. I think this cartridge will be with us for quite awhile, but I've been wrong about many such things.

As far as the WSSM's go, I see some promise in necking them up. The .243 WSSM must hold more powder than the .243, probably somewhere in between the .308 casing and the .284 unless the gain is purely from increased pressures. The 25-06 is overbore, perhaps a .257 WSSM would make a good super light hunting round. I think that this cartridge will spawn many wildcats. If it holds more powder than a .308 casing, I can see a valid use for those desiring a short, light rifle in calibers from .25-.35 caliber. The true value of these cartridges will be for the guys who need the rifle that weighs 4 ounces less than the excellent short action rounds and rifles we already have. 6mm Rem, .257 Roberts(AI),6.5 Swede, 7-08, 7x57, .284 Winchester, .308, and .358, .350 Rem Mag...all excellent rounds. I don't see the .223 WSSM taking much business away from the 22-250. The .243 WSSM likely isn't going to make too many folks run out and sell their 6mm's either.
 

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Been there, still enjoy it

Hi Guys! Interesting thread.

A few years ago I got into reloading the 7-30 Waters, had a machinist friend make a custom case trimmer, experimented with loads, etc. It was fun and engaged my brain in some mental gymnastics, which I figure is loads better (OK, so it's a pun - are puns allowed on this Forum?) than loafing with my brain in "Alpha State" in front of the boob tube.

I like to link gun and cartridge use with practical applications. That said, I occasionally touch base with reality by remembering a Federal Cartridge advertisement. Maybe some of you other guys remember it. It may have been fabricated by a marketer, but it could have been true. The advertisement showed a table top with an old Federal 30-06 paper box with the end flaps open and a 20-round cartridge carrier next to it. There was only one loaded Federal cartridge in the carrier -- 19 empty holes. Next to those on the table was a 3X3 B&W snapshot of a guy in a checker pattern jacket in the snow with a downed elk. Also on the table was a handwritten letter to Federal which said something like this: "I wanted to take a moment to thank you for making a really great product. Every year for the last 19 years I have filled our meat locker using just one of your cartridges per year. In fact, I like them so much I thought you'd be pleased to know I am getting ready to buy another box."
That may not have been a real letter --- then again, it could have been. Hmmmm . . . . . Even so, I don't regret a moment spent messing with that 7-30 Waters and I might someday experiment with the 243 WSSM even though a properly used Win 243 will cleanly take any Florida deer.
 

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Ok I can see alot of positive remarks on the WSM/WSSM's, what are the draw backs, not sure time will tell, maybe rifleing wearing will be sooner than standard carts, how about case wear, will brass life be shorter?, how about head spaceing, does this become a problem. How are these carts to reload. Is it affordable to reload using these componets. I'm not sure either, if anybody does let us know. Aim small hit small. RAMbo.
 

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If nothing else the new rounds/rifles give us something to dream about...talk about. Trying to improve on the proven is a lot of what this game (ie guns and shooting) is all about. I haven't been too swayed by the new cartridges but will have to admit that the 300 WSM has caught my attention once or twice, and probably is the most useful of the lot.

However, I will never turn my back on my 30-30 WCF, 270 Win, 30-06, and 300 Sav. These are real performers and have lived much longer than almost all of these new rounds ever will. And will do all that any of them will too...except possibly at a shorter range. I have to get closer to make them work. Maybe that's one problem I have with the new stuff.

I have received 2 different boxes of 300 Sav ammo as gifts over the years...one each of 150gr and 180gr. Both of these boxes had one round missing from them. I'll never know for sure but the romantic part of me wants to think that they were the only round needed "that" season. Sadly, the 300 Sav has been outperformed by so many different "new" cartridges over time that it is hardly known anymore, at least by anyone but us oldtimers.

The new stuff is interesting...but the old stuff still works. Just ask the smokepole shooters.

Bart (waxing nostalgic and showing his age)
 

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Bart,
You make some very good points, all valid. It is my belief, in line with most everything else today, that these cartridges are meant to make many folks into something they are not. The vacation time is tight, the hunts shorter, the hunter in poorer condition, the game a wary as ever. The idea behind these cartridges, and a brilliant marketing ploy it is, will likely sell some guns. (1)The rifles weigh a little less, so you can allegedly hunt longer on more difficult terrain without actually having to improve your personal condition. This is pure bunk, but makes for good marketing. (2) The rifles don't kick nearly as hard as rifles that shoot the traditional magnums. I would say this is also BS for the most part with all else being equal. This also helps market magnum rifles to individuals who don't want to put in their time practicing to master the additional recoil and muzzle blast that a magnum rifle produces. The muzzle blast should be less pronounced with these cartridges than "traditional magnums" so there is a good thing. (3)The cartridge is more inherently accurate. This is also BS in large part. The rounds use succesful benchrest technology in their design, which has little to do with a field rifle under field conditions. The accuracy is more likely a result of premium bullets in a factory cartridge that are optimized for the chambering dimensions, read that throat length, for the rifles that they are chambered for. (4)You need a magnum to shoot across that canyon at that ____ on the last day of your hunt with your HUGE scope to kill an animal at dusk. This is also catered to hunters who don't have the skill or ambition to get closer to game. While I agree it's nice to have the trajectory of a magnum, and I like to shoot them, I don't believe it's all that neccesary or even good to have unskilled riflemen shooting at game at 3-400yds, even if the cartridge has the punch to get the job done.

In summary, I think these rounds are good cartridges and will be especially useful in the hands of skilled riflemen and hunters. They offer a benefit in that they SEEM to shoot as well or better than most other rounds out there on the average, according to the gun writers. Will they help the unskilled, unpracticed woodsmen to bag game at obscene range with any greater degree of proficiency than a 300 WinMag? Not unless it's that much easier to shoot that it encourages practice, and I don't believe that will be the case. As I said earlier, I'd pick the 300WSM as the star of the bunch, followed by the .270WSM. I don't see the 7mm WSM making any kind of dent in the popularity of the 7mm RemMag. For the hunters who spend money, like $3-10K, plus travel and tags, on the guided 10 day _____ hunt, a rifle with these virtues will be hard to pass up. I think they will be of value of those of us who decide to try them, as the design and efficiency is a good thing. I've though about replacing my .270 Wthby M70 with a new WSM, but then I do shoot my .270 Wthby and say "why?".
 

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The Troll Whisperer (Moderator)
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You forgot the part where the once-a-year hunter shows up in camp clutching his new 40" bbl'd stainless/polymer rifle with the 8X45X80 scope, prideful fevered eyes wide and glinting and exclaiming "Why, this is my new .293 Micro Short Magnum that Wunderjabber wrote about that is guaranteed to shoot across the Grand Canyon and nail the critter right in his hoof prints!"

That, Gentlemen, is what it's all about! ;)
 

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Kdub,
you pretty well hit the nail on the head. I tried to debunk the advertised advantages, but you succinctly made it short winded and to the point. I believe the cartridges are a step forward, but we wrangle over the most petty differences already. The simple fact is, in my opinion of course, that: there is a suitable cartridge, or VERY many VERY suitable cartridges already at hand, so it's all alot of blather. If you can't find a cartridge that will do what you want in a rifle you want, in factory guise, you're a nut. I guess that's why we all congregate here, cuz we're all nuts! Are the WSM's "new and improved"? Yes, they are, as aptly praised by our guns scribes of the day. Are they really? Who cares. It will sell guns. It will form the foundation for many new wildcats on a inexpensive factory case. It will keep the never-ending debate alive. It will kill ____. It will have a succesor that will keep the industry alive. If you want one, buy one...and of course let us know how it works:). If you don't want one, don't bash it unless the factories offer up ammo that doesn't work or rifles that won't shoot. These new cartidges will not change the minds of many, if any, but they will keep the debate and the shooting going. Hopefully the sales as well. I think they are a step forward in many ways, but the true performers will always be here. I don't see the old rounds going away. The 7mm and .300 Mags are a fixture in hunting in this country, so I believe there is room for one or two more. I wonder what a .338 WSM could muster with a 210gr Barnes XBT-XLC? From a 22-24" barrel? With all that powder capacity intruded upon by the "long, deep-seated" bullet? I guess we'll find out. More choices equals more fun equals more guns equals more people shooting, which equals the preservation of a tradition and RIGHT. What more could a guy ask for? Ligher, faster, more efficient, and better is the way of the world..and advertising. Why should our guns take a back seat?
 

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300wsm

kdub said:
You forgot the part where the once-a-year hunter shows up in camp clutching his new 40" bbl'd stainless/polymer rifle with the 8X45X80 scope, prideful fevered eyes wide and glinting and exclaiming "Why, this is my new .293 Micro Short Magnum that Wunderjabber wrote about that is guaranteed to shoot across the Grand Canyon and nail the critter right in his hoof prints!"

That, Gentlemen, is what it's all about! ;)
While I have to agree with this I have to say that I love the 300WSM. After using a sporterized '03 in 30-06 for more than 20 years on all kinds of game I finally treated myself to a Winchester model70 Classic laminate in the 300WSM.
Both the old '03 and the WSM were similar in weight, both wear similar recoil pads, and have the same length barrels.
Yet the WSM is so much more pleasant to shoot; especially at the bench. I can't say much about the other short mags due to lack of personal experience with them, but for the hunter who doesn't already own a standard magnum I would highly reccomend the 300WSM.
Just my 2 cents worth ---whizzum300---
 

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Rmouleart said:
Ok I can see alot of positive remarks on the WSM/WSSM's, what are the draw backs, not sure time will tell, maybe rifleing wearing will be sooner than standard carts, how about case wear, will brass life be shorter?, how about head spaceing, does this become a problem. How are these carts to reload. Is it affordable to reload using these componets. I'm not sure either, if anybody does let us know. Aim small hit small. RAMbo.

Hey Rmouleart and Fellas,

The biggest drawback, for me, is that I waited forty years for a gun company to see the pluses in the .404 Jeffrey case,...then they screwed it up by putting it in a short action.

F.Y.I. Winchester did not come up with the idea. Rick Jamison went to Win/Browning with the idea, based on his 'Jamison' cartridge line. He dealt with them for months before they 'sneaked'(for want of a better word) in with the .300 WSM. He got no credit whatsoever. There was, and still might be, a lawsuit pending. I know this to be true because he is a friend of mine. I have spent time at his place and he has spent time at mine.

Getting back to the .300 WSM; Roy Gradle, Fred Wade, Parker Ackley, and John Howell all fooled with the .348 Win. case, either rimmed or turned rimless with new extractor groove cut. These are identicle in base diameter as the .404. I was wishing for a rimless, Howell based factory load, same long neck, in a long action. I didn't get it.

Look at a cut-away of the .300WSM with a Scirroco 150 gr bullet(Swift Reloading Manual). The bullet base is WAAAY down in the case. Picture where a 180gr. or 220gr would be. That is serious encroachment on the powder space.

A bigger gripe, for me, is the fact that it's in a short action. I can't seat the bullet out to touch the rifling. My biggest gripe is throat life(read accuracy life). Use a straight-edge and draw a line, in line with the shoulder, in relation with the case mouth. Can you picture what the unburned powder grains are going to do to the throat? In my opinion, the shoulder should have been a little steeper and the neck a little longer.

Jamison disagreed with me. The cartridge he was pushing to Winchester/Browning was identical to the .300WSM. Go figure.

So,...I put my mony where my mouth was. I drew up a design, had Brad Elder, at PowrPakr(Ricks nephew) send for a reamer. After we received it I sent the reamer to Neil Jones for an exact measurement on a form die set. Rick and I checked and found a Ruger 77II in .300 Win Mag would handle the big cases, slick and smooth. I bought one, in stainless, then ordered a fluted match barrel from Lilja.

The bottom line is that I have what I've always wanted. Using the .300WSM case, I set the shoulder back for a .380 length neck, 40deg. shoulder. With the 150gr Scirocco seated to the base of the neck(Long throat), and bullet touching the lands, the case holds one(1) grain more water than the .300WSM, seated to factory length. I'm also getting 50fps more than a max load in the WSM with the same charge and mine isn't max.

With a combustion chamber slightly larger, I thought I would get less pressure AND less velocity. Didn't happen. I think the reason is the way the powder burns. Going back to the cut-away in the Swift book and a cut-away of mine, it is clear that the powder gasses are 'pushing' the bullet differently. I think it's analogous to having three guys pushing a car. You push with one guy in the back and the others pushing on the sides it is somewhat inefficient. Put all three in the back and you have all their 'power' right from the get-go. That is a guess. You might also notice that straight-edging my case, will show that unburned powder granules do not hit the throat. They hit the inside of the neck and get more chance to burn It has to have less erosion-longer throat life.

I call it the .30 Pittbull.

Okay, I'm done running my mouth. Good luck and good shooting.

Bud
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Bud,

I've enjoyed Rick's articles and learned a lot over the years. Count me as a fan. Saw the short magnums when introduced and as I recall he wrote one of the first articles, not too long after his short .30 wildcat? Must have been painful to have to write about Win's great new cartridge and not be able to mention how he'd already done all the work a couple of years earlier... oh well. Tell him to stop by the forum sometime....
 

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MikeG,

I don't think he has written one word concerning the WSM cartridge line. Did you notice that Winchester gave the test guns to Layne Simpson for the 'newsbreak' testing. Rick must have really ticked them off.



Bud
 
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