338 Win barrel length

switchbackkd

Member
Jan 22, 2012
69
0
Which barrel length is best 22 24 26.

I did find the Savage Bear Hunter 23".

I'm looking to get middle of the road gun.
 

memtb

Member
The .338 WM is not really considered an “over bore” cartridge. Meaning, that from the generally accepted barrel length of 24” your gains or loses in velocities / per inch of barrel length should not be significant! It seems that 15 FPS to 30 FPS change in velocity is considered to be the norm. That’s probably less than the potential differences between fast or slow barrels of the same length! memtb
 

swampokie

Veteran member
Jul 29, 2013
1,112
13
42
Haworth Oklahoma
I have a 116 bear hunter that "lobs" 250 grain corelokts into a jagged hole. 23" Not sure how much it loses not being 24" but damn its accurate
 

Micah S

Active Member
Jan 11, 2016
186
89
Sandy Oregon
You gain more speed with a longer barrel. If you don't need more speed or your going to shoot off hand get a shorter barrel.
 

Joseph

Active Member
Jan 25, 2014
221
108
Creston BC Canada
I would say it depends on your hunting style, for me personally I don't like a barrel longer than 22" mainly because I hike a lot in the mountains. Still hunting is my favourite method closely followed by spot and stalk so I find a shorter barrel handier. I also backpack hunt a fair bit so shorter(less sticking above the pack) while moving through the trees means less hang ups. I have one rifle(I bought a Savage Axis youth in 7mm-08rem for my girls) that with a 20" barrel, short action cartridge, and reduced LOP comes in 3.5" shorter than my other rifles. It is really handy on a backpack trip or in the thicker stuff. The animals are never going to notice the extra few FPS you might get with a couple extra inches.
 

memtb

Member
I would say it depends on your hunting style, for me personally I don't like a barrel longer than 22" mainly because I hike a lot in the mountains. Still hunting is my favourite method closely followed by spot and stalk so I find a shorter barrel handier. I also backpack hunt a fair bit so shorter(less sticking above the pack) while moving through the trees means less hang ups. I have one rifle(I bought a Savage Axis youth in 7mm-08rem for my girls) that with a 20" barrel, short action cartridge, and reduced LOP comes in 3.5" shorter than my other rifles. It is really handy on a backpack trip or in the thicker stuff. The animals are never going to notice the extra few FPS you might get with a couple extra inches.

I too, like shorter barrels, for the same reason as yourself. However, if you wish to keep a longer barrel, but wish to maintain portability....this is what I did with my rifle. Relocate the forward sling swivel to the barrel. This effectively and substantially lowers the muzzle when the rifle is “shoulder carried” ! Actually, the muzzle is lower than the original muzzle position! Another plus when relocating the forward swivel, is that, if you shoot a high recoil rifle...during recoil the forward swivel “cannot” be driven into the web of the hand! memtb
 

bdan68

Active Member
Nov 13, 2013
270
8
52
Rochester, Washington
My 338 has a 24 inch barrel but I've read that there's no advantage to a 24 inch over a 22 inch in the 338 Win. Mag. Or, they say even a 20 inch barrel is just fine in the 338. So it mostly depends on what feels best to you.
 
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HuskyMusky

Veteran member
Nov 29, 2011
1,151
59
IL
22-24" max!

23" would be perfect!

I don't have the chart in front of me, but basically... a 243win with a 22" barrel has more powder/barrel volume than a 338win mag with a 24" barrel. possibly even 22".
 
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