Recommendations on .375 H&H?

Malpaso

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My background - civilian, I have done a lot of shooting, mostly competitive handgun, but very little rifle other than lever guns. I'm looking for a recreational bolt gun. From reading, this site has a lot professionals and experts, far above my level. I hoping for some of that knowledge to trickle down to my situation. I haven't found a lot about the .375 H&H here, so I'm finally posting to get some direction.

Bolt gun experience - I bought a Savage 10FP a number of years ago for this purpose, and put a handful of rounds through it before our club promptly lost it's 200m range. It sat in the safe and I finally sold it. I did keep the IOR 2.5-10x42 MP8 scope. I hope to reuse that on a new gun. I would also like to have irons.

Where I'll be using it - My club only has a 100m range. I know this type of rifle will be kind of wasted on a short range, but it's going to be recreational as I mentioned, and unless/until I join another club with a longer range, it is what I have.

Choice of caliber - completely a whim. I like the history of the cartridge, and since I'll never own an H&H double gun, I will take what I can get. Also, I like to reload. Reading about the .375, there's a lot of options for reloading.

I'm willing to pay for quality, but I don't need to overspend for recreational ability, use and distances.
 
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CMP70306

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To be honest the .375 H&H would not be my first choice for a target rifle, light rifles and heavy bullets don't make for a pleasant combination when shooting long strings. Now if you planned on hunting and only needed one rifle then the .375 would be an idea choice as you could take any game animal in the world with it. Since you reload that will really cut down on the ammo cost and allow you to load down for a more pleasant shooting experience.

For rifles my recommendation would be either the Winchester Model 70 Alaskan or the Browning X-Bolt. There are several different models of X-bolt chambered in .375 so pick which one best suits you. You could look at other manufacturers to determine if there is another action you prefer however they will all pretty much be Safari Style rifles.

While I know the .375 will work with up to 300gr hunting solids I would do some research to determine the largest bullets the rate of twist will be able to handle. This can be done online with the JBM Ballistics Stability Calculator. Should they stabilize I believe the longer match bullets will have to be single fed, this is the issue I run into with my 300 H&H as the 2.850 case length does not allow for some of the higher BC bullets at Mag length.

Personally I skipped the .375 H&H, with several .300 mags and a 45-70 I chose the .458 as my safari rifle as I can utilize the same bullets as the 45-70 and have an increase in close range energy over the 300 mags.
 

mcameron

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    .375 is a great caliber.....probably the most versatile hunting round on the planet.....and will kill anything big enough to die.

    i have a ruger No.1 in .375 and love it.....im also in the process of getting a Winchester M70 Safari express in .375 as well.

    but from what ive seen, the CZ550, Winchester M70 and Ruger No.1 are the most popular .375 production guns out right now.


    as for Recoil, its really not that bad......its actually similar to shooting a 3" deer slug.........but where the slug feels like a punch to the shoulder......the .375 feels like a hard push. i find its actually quite pleasant to shoot.
     

    Vargmat

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    For a proper big game hunting rifle, sure!
    If you are a masochist with deep pockets, then by all means, get it as a range gun. I tried an old Sako huting rifle in said caliber last year, I took 4 shots with it and handed it back to the owner, it was enough for me. The rifle shot wonderfully, but it is a handfull.
    The owner shot just over a box of ammo through it at that session, after which he offered me to buy the rifle for 350$, that was less than he paid for it, he said it was too much for him.
    I did not buy it.
     

    mcameron

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    For a proper big game hunting rifle, sure!
    If you are a masochist with deep pockets, then by all means, get it as a range gun. I tried an old Sako huting rifle in said caliber last year, I took 4 shots with it and handed it back to the owner, it was enough for me. The rifle shot wonderfully, but it is a handfull.
    The owner shot just over a box of ammo through it at that session, after which he offered me to buy the rifle for 350$, that was less than he paid for it, he said it was too much for him.
    I did not buy it.

    honestly, the big boomers arent really that bad if you know how to shoot it

    you want to shoot it more like you shoot an M4 than you do a National match rifle.

    essentially the way i shoot big bore rifles is i stand with my shoulders square to the target, and my feet in a position just like im about to throw a hard punch. the stock is placed more on my chest and less in my shoulder pocket......ide say the toe of the butt is about 3" above my nipple

    this places more of the recoil into my chest, and less onto my shoulder, allowing the spine to absorb the recoil

    more like this:
    proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fencrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com%2Fimages%3Fq%3Dtbn%3AANd9GcSrcyOyx_kq...jpg


    and less like this:
    proxy.php?image=https%3A%2F%2Fencrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com%2Fimages%3Fq%3Dtbn%3AANd9GcT6thZgPaJ8...jpg

    if you try to do the latter, you are going to end up with a nice welt on your shoulder
     

    308pirate

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    And even worse than using a target shooter stance is shooting a big bore from the bench.

    Why American shooters are addicted to benches, I will never know.
     

    redneckbmxer24

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    I'm willing to pay for quality, but I don't need to overspend for recreational ability, use and distances.

    Uhhh, lobbing .375cal projectiles capable of taking the largest game on the planet to shoot targets at 100 yards is certainly overspending.

    Do yourself a favor and buy a nice 22, you'll get a lot more enjoyment out of it and you'll shoot it way more. My recommendation would be an Anschutz.
     

    mcameron

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    yeah, i almost never shoot from a bench......if i need a steady shot, im shooting prone, or from a sling........personally, i dont care if my rifle can shoot 0.2MOA from a bench, there arent going to be any benches for me to shoot from in the field.....

    its kind of like saying "my car can run a 1/4 mile in 7 seconds if i run 110 octane fuel".......but only ever running 83 octane pump gas in it........

    Uhhh, lobbing .375cal projectiles capable of taking the largest game on the planet to shoot targets at 100 yards is certainly overspending.

    Do yourself a favor and buy a nice 22, you'll get a lot more enjoyment out of it and you'll shoot it way more. My recommendation would be an Anschutz.

    ....gee you must be fun at parties......why not just buy a pellet gun.
     

    Malpaso

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    Uhhh, lobbing .375cal projectiles capable of taking the largest game on the planet to shoot targets at 100 yards is certainly overspending.

    Do yourself a favor and buy a nice 22, you'll get a lot more enjoyment out of it and you'll shoot it way more. My recommendation would be an Anschutz.

    I have considered a 5.56/.223 (Savage Axis II) as an alternative. It might be better suited for my available distances, and I do have a decent amount of ammo. Reloading is not a whole lot of fun however. I'm not sure I've ever used ".22" and "enjoyment" in the same sentence.
     

    jbuck88

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    I have one as well, a Win model 70 safari express

    There is some recoil but it isn't very fast or violent. There is a lot of comparison of the 300gr 375 to the 180gr 30-06 with hunting bullets, trajectory wise. I've shot flyweight 308's that hurt more then my 375 to shoot from the bench, ymmv
     

    308pirate

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    Do yourself a favor and buy a nice 22, you'll get a lot more enjoyment out of it and you'll shoot it way more. My recommendation would be an Anschutz.

    Cheaper for sure. Not sure about the "more enjoyment" part.

    FF to the 5 min mark for the enjoyment to begin


     

    redneckbmxer24

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    I have considered a 5.56/.223 (Savage Axis II) as an alternative. It might be better suited for my available distances, and I do have a decent amount of ammo. Reloading is not a whole lot of fun however. I'm not sure I've ever used ".22" and "enjoyment" in the same sentence.

    I'd seriously recommend that you take a step back and evaluate your needs. You're looking at shooting targets at 100 yards, that's really the only requirement you've stated for purchasing a rifle.

    Your original post is asking about a heavy recoiling rifle that will not be "cheap" to purchase, or shoot regardless of whether you load your own ammo. Now you're also considering a bargain bin POS Savage Axis? I think you're looking to make a purchase on a whim and logic and reason is out the window.

    How is a 22 not enjoyable to shoot? Comparing a bolt action to your other choices they're apples to apples, and it's easily capable of the distances you're looking to shoot and well beyond. It easily fills your requirements, is far more economical to shoot, and is a far more logical choice for 100 yard target shooting.
     

    Vargmat

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    mcameron; Yeah, I would say that I know my way around rifles, atleast better than the avarage Joe. Like I said, the rifle shot great, but I dont have any use for the power of a .375 H&H and I dont have the masochistic urge to use one for recreational target use. There are better tools available for the job at hand.
    My 6,5x47 Lapua gives me pretty much all I need and want. I suggest that "Malpaso" reconsideres his available options.
     

    mcameron

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    Jesus.......if he came here and said " im looking at a .50bmg/.338 lapua/ .416 barret"........would yall be telling him to buy a .22?

    Some people dont buy guns for the cold calculating reason of what they "need"......sometimes they look for guns because they are fun


    if the guy is looking at a .375hh.....im assuming he already has a .22, or at the very least knows its an option........
     

    spife7980

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    Also, I like to reload.

    Reloading is not a whole lot of fun however

    Well which is it? How can we recommend stuff if you dont even seem to know what you want? I would never in my wildest dreams get a 375 for frequent recreational target shooting if I werent reloading for it.

    I will recommend you get a 223 based on your stated uses, especially if all youll be shooting is 100 yards. Plentiful ammo available and most of all affordable. Paying 3-4 bucks per shot of 375 is not fun to me. You could shoot literally 10x as much 223 as you could 375 per dollar.
    Now if youre only going to shoot once every few months and can stomach the 60 bucks for a box then by all means go for the 375 and get your rocks off, big guns can be a literal and figurative blast. I personally would rather shoot the 223 and be able to shoot it every weekend (and I do!).
     
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    Malpaso

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    Well which is it? How can we recommend stuff if you dont even seem to know what you want?.

    Well, since you clipped my original quote, I'll reiterate.

    <<I have considered a 5.56/.223 (Savage Axis II) as an alternative. It might be better suited for my available distances, and I do have a decent amount of ammo. Reloading is not a whole lot of fun however>>

    Reloading for 5.56/.223 is not a whole lot of fun.

     

    Geno C.

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    If you want one, here's a nice custom 375 in the classifieds here.

    Just throwing that out there...

    If it's what you want, then get one. If you're just looking to punch paper at 100 I would think there are better options out there. A PPC or 30br come to mind for tiny groups or score shooting. I would agree with the 22 though. A silenced 22 at 100 yards is about as much fun as a guy can have with his pants on!
     

    Beneviolence

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    Just a heads up, the CZ 550's in the big boy calibers may need some tuning to get to feed properly. I'm not poo-poo'ing them at all, they're great rifles; particularly for the price. If I were in the market for that caliber, that's what I'd go for. You may want to lurk on the 'africahunting' forum for more information on the 375H&H.
     

    moosemeat

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    If I was buying a 375 H&H it would be a winchester model 70 African. Hell i think about doing just that every couple of months. If you hunt large game the 375 is about the best you can do for a one rifle plan. Everything from white tail to cape buffalo.
    The real questions
    1) Whats your goal? 375 H&H is fine out to 300 yards but is not a long range round.
    2) Whats your budget?
    3) How much experience do you have shooting rifles? If i was kicking off my rifle experiance with a centerfire and had the knowledge I do know I'd pick up a nice 223 bolt like a T3 or if I hunted a 243. That way i could afford to shoot, not worrie about recoil, and develope skills.
     

    sandwarrior

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    CZ 550

    And no others

    ^^^^
    This...

    On the other hand, I would recommend a much more reasonable cartridge for here in N. America. The .375 is a dangerous game cartridge and the only thing really in it's league are Grizzly's (can't hunt), Alaskan brown bear and Alaskan bull Moose (that might charge). Unless your plans are to hunt these, get something in the 30-06 class of cartridges or .308 class.
     

    mcameron

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    Personally if i were going to get a cz550....i would just go whole hog and buy a .458Lott or .505Gibbs.

    if youre into big bore rifles, thats going to be your next purchade after a .375 anyways.....might as well just make that jump now.

    I was about to buy a cz550 in 458 until i got a good deal on the winchester......

    will probably end up buyong one in a few months anyways
     

    Malpaso

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    If I was buying a 375 H&H it would be a winchester model 70 African. Hell i think about doing just that every couple of months. If you hunt large game the 375 is about the best you can do for a one rifle plan. Everything from white tail to cape buffalo.
    The real questions
    1) Whats your goal? 375 H&H is fine out to 300 yards but is not a long range round.
    Purely recreational, and reloading experiments. I only have a 100yd range at this point. No big game hunting plans

    2) Whats your budget?
    Probably between $1k and $1.5k not including glass, which I already have

    3) How much experience do you have shooting rifles? If i was kicking off my rifle experiance with a centerfire and had the knowledge I do know I'd pick up a nice 223 bolt like a T3 or if I hunted a 243. That way i could afford to shoot, not worrie about recoil, and develope skills.
    I've shot thousands of rounds, but all lever and AR, very little bolt gun.

     

    sandwarrior

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    Purely recreational, and reloading experiments. I only have a 100yd range at this point. No big game hunting plans


    Probably between $1k and $1.5k not including glass, which I already have


    I've shot thousands of rounds, but all lever and AR, very little bolt gun.

    What size lever guns? 444 Marlin? .450 Marlin? If you can handle the big rounds in a lever you can do okay with a big round in a bolt gun.

    If not the suggestion still stands as to work on something more reasonable for recoil.
     

    Malpaso

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    What size lever guns? 444 Marlin? .450 Marlin? If you can handle the big rounds in a lever you can do okay with a big round in a bolt gun.

    If not the suggestion still stands as to work on something more reasonable for recoil.

    .357mag, .44mag, .38-55, .45-70
     

    moosemeat

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    My advice would be to buy a good heavy barreled bolt in 6.5 something if you want to play at extended range. If you just want a classic hunting rifle i stand by my statement. Get a winny m70. A cz is also nice. If your ready to drop $70 a box of shell until you start reloading go ahead and get a 375 H&H. Ive shot one. Its not horrible. Less punishing that my featherweight 300wsm. If you got a shotgun that can handle slugs go put some 3" magnum slugs through it and that shoulx give you a 80% experience to a 375. I think a 45/70 guidd gun is a kitten in comparison to a 375.
     
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    I shoot and reload precision .300 H&H. It is a Remington 700 blueprinted. Rock Creek barrel. McMillan stock. Shoots very well. I can't imagine going with parent cartridge at 100m target shooting unless you are going hunting the man eating lions of Salvo.
     

    spaniel

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    If you are set on a 375, I'd give serious consideration to the 375 Ruger before comitting to the H&H. It's pretty much a modernized and optimized version and leaves nothing on the table to the H&H.

    That said, I scratch my head as to why you're wanting one. I mean if you do, go for it, I own a BFR revolver in 45-70. Not much more practical. But for <200 yard paper punching I'd shoot .22 or 6mm caliber.
     

    hollowoutadime

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    When I think .375, I think a double rifle on an African safari. When I think of an Savage Axis, I think drop gun.
     

    Malpaso

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    First off, thanks to all who posted, both positive and negative recommendations, all were informational. The more I read, the more I began to agree that the .375 H&H probably isn't the most rational caliber for my circumstance. I also made the rounds of all the larger gun stores in the area to look at and handle as many bolt guns as I could. I did find a used CZ in .375. I did not bring it home. I also looked at a number of other CZs and Tikkas.

    I also read the 962 posts on the Tikka T3. I may shift my focus toward the T3X in .223.

    Thanks again.
     

    NateVA

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    First off, thanks to all who posted, both positive and negative recommendations, all were informational. The more I read, the more I began to agree that the .375 H&H probably isn't the most rational caliber for my circumstance. I also made the rounds of all the larger gun stores in the area to look at and handle as many bolt guns as I could. I did find a used CZ in .375. I did not bring it home. I also looked at a number of other CZs and Tikkas.

    I also read the 962 posts on the Tikka T3. I may shift my focus toward the T3X in .223.

    Thanks again.

    That sounds like a much better choice.
     

    spife7980

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    In any case you won't regret having a good varmint barreled 223. You can shoot it all day long with a smile