338" cartridges story

I would like to have a BRIEF story of the 338" sporting rifle cartridges.
Development of use of 338" bullets especially



I assume you really do mean .338"?

The 33 Winchester was introduced in the Winchester M86 rifle in 1902 and was discontinued in 1936 when the M71 rifle in 348 Winchester replaced it.

There were no more .338" cartridges in the USA until 1958 when the 338 Winchester Magnum was introduced. This opened the flood gates and in the last few years the number of 338 cartridges has exploded with many factory and proprietary cartridges, such as Weatherby, Lazzeroni, Black Mesa, Canadian, Lapua, Dakota, Remington, Excaliber, JDJ, A-Square, and the new ones like the Federal and Ruger. I’m sure I’ve missed some.

There are also quite a few 338 wildcats.

Except for possibly the 33 BSA, I believe that all other “33” caliber cartridges use the .333" bullets which makes them, technically, a 325 bore.

Wasn’t there was a thread on the Forum some time back where IHMSA 80x80 (or somebody) posted a photo of his favorite 338 cartridges? Do a search.


Yes I did that Ray. It was posted during the St. Louis cartridge show, since many of us couldn’t make it. I could repost the picture here if someone wants to see it.

Thanks,so the 33 winchester should be the first 33" caliber american cartridge ever made.The first english 33" cartridge should be the 333 jeffery

IHMSA,please can you re-post your picture?I found the topic,but the picture has been erased


Sure thing Pivi…here it is.

There are some wildcats and proprietary cartridges too.The last one should be the 338 Excaliber,I think


IHMSA80x80: I take it that the first one is the .338 Whisper Mk II, followed by the original .338 Whisper?

The first one looks like a 338-223 straight to me.

Pivi: The .338 Whisper Mk II is based on the .221 Fireball case. It should be quite close to the short version of the .338-223 Straight.

Pivi…very good, got both the first and last ones correct. Only 20 more to go.

Daniel…I don’t have the .338 Whisper MKII, you are correct, the second one is the original .338 Whisper.