.300 Winchester Magnum cartridges

Best bullet for a .300 Win Mag

Q: Someone at the range warned me that the short neck of the .300 Win Mag, which measures a mere .264”, allows a heavy 200gn bullet to move from lack of case neck tension and be driven back into the case when subjected to recoil in the magazine. 

He said that the same thing may happen with some of the longer180gn bullets.

Is this true? If so, is there any way I can prevent this kind of thing from happening? 

What weight bullet do you prefer for big game in a .30 magnum?

Ron Matthews

A: I’ve heard this complaint about the .300 Win Mag many times, but never from a hunter/reloader who owned one. 

Most modern rifles chambered for this cartridge have magazines and throats made long enough that bullets can be seated out where they belong (far enough out to gain all the efficiency of which the case is capable). 

Reloaders realised this and started seating heavy bullets out as far as the magazine would allow, because this helped hold heavy bullets more tightly in the short neck.

With today’s tough 180gn bullets there is really no need for heavier 200 and 220gn bullets, as the 180s penetrate deeper and offer a flatter trajectory over normal hunting distance. 

While the base of practically any 180gn bullet seats below the base of the neck, taking up some powder space, it does not reduce capacity enough to make a significant difference.

There sure ain’t no flies on the good 180gn Nosler Partition leaving the muzzle at 3100fps. Sighted in 3” high at 100yd, it is 4” high at 200, on point of aim at 300, and only 9” low at 400.




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Nick Harvey

The late Nick Harvey (1931-2024) was one of the world's most experienced and knowledgeable gun writers, a true legend of the business. He wrote about firearms and hunting for about 70 years, published many books and uncounted articles, and travelled the world to hunt and shoot. His reloading manuals are highly sought after, and his knowledge of the subject was unmatched. He was Sporting Shooter's Technical Editor for almost 50 years. His work lives on here as part of his legacy to us all.