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Old 11-12-2018, 08:58 PM   #1
Ecobeast
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Default 280 AI or 7mm STW?

Which one and why, I also handload so ammo price is not a factor. Plan to use it for long range hunting and longe range plinking in general.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:13 PM   #2
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Which one and why, I also handload so ammo price is not a factor. Plan to use it for long range hunting and longe range plinking in general.
Sounds like you don't need some short and nimble truck gun. If you are cool with a long barrel (28+) then I would go with the STW. If you want to stick in the 24-26" range the .280AI makes sense. I have a couple .257 STWs, a 7mm STW and a plain ol' .280 Rem. (24"). The STWs shine with longer tubes. Slight advantage on brass availability/quality on the .280.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:17 PM   #3
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While both great cartridges, two different beasts IMO. I think the STW really shines once you get into the heavies. The Ackley does really well with 140-168gr pills. For true long range hunting, I would opt for the STW with a fast twist for the 195 Berger.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:17 PM   #4
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Depends on how much plinking. The STW is harder on barrels and harder on you. If it's straight long range hunting then the STW gets the nod. Add in alot of plinking and you will get more barrel life with the AI.

I had an STW and it was fine but if I was doing it over again now I'd probably also be looking hard at the 28 Nosler.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:21 PM   #5
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Depends on the kind of long rang hunting you have in mind. Hiking or spot and stalk I would do the 280AI, more comfortable to pack and shoot in a lighter package. The 7STW in a heavier stock would be legit for long range plinking and blind style hunting, but you wouldn’t want to tote it around all day. I know from experience, 7mag in an ultralight rifle... sucks. STW is gonna pack a little more punch than 7mag, so there is no way I would want to endure that punishment.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:22 PM   #6
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Default Split the difference

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Which one and why, I also handload so ammo price is not a factor. Plan to use it for long range hunting and longe range plinking in general.
Why not split the difference and go with a 7 Rem Mag? It'll do 90% of what a 7mm STW will do with much greater ammo/reloading component availability and less cost. I was thinking along the same lines as you recently and ended up building a 7RM. Hard to beat the old standbys when it comes to practicality. Just my $.02.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:47 PM   #7
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The 280AI will be easier on your shoulder.
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Old 11-13-2018, 12:33 PM   #8
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Sounds like you don't need some short and nimble truck gun. If you are cool with a long barrel (28+) then I would go with the STW. If you want to stick in the 24-26" range the .280AI makes sense. I have a couple .257 STWs, a 7mm STW and a plain ol' .280 Rem. (24"). The STWs shine with longer tubes. Slight advantage on brass availability/quality on the .280.
The 7 STW was gonna run a 26" and the 280 AI I was thinking 24" barrel, 280 AI would definitely run the 140 Nosler BT's and the 7 STW would probably run the 168 berger's only because we already have a load developed for the STW, granted it may have to be tweeked or just may not shoot in the 1-10 twist of the 7 STW. Just saw that hornady is now producing Precision Long Range Hunter ammo in the 280AI and the 7 STW now wonder how those would perform. Even making the ammo for my .257 wby mag too may have to give that a try as well.
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Old 11-13-2018, 12:36 PM   #9
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Why not split the difference and go with a 7 Rem Mag?
My first thought. There's a common cartridge right in between those.
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:03 PM   #10
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I had a STW and its not a light kicker for sure but it will reach out there .. 26 nosler would be my choice to do over today .
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:17 PM   #11
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I also shoot a STW with 168 gr Bergers it is a hammer at long range shooting !
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:44 PM   #12
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A 280AI will do what a 7mag will do, but with a non-belted standard head case. I personally would opt for the 280AI unless you are talking past 1000 yds then I would be looking at either a 7STW, or 28 Nosler if not stepping up to the big 30s. My choice would be the 280AI as its just such a versatile round with a much longer barrel life and lower recoil which would make spotting misses and hits much easier at distance.
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Old 11-13-2018, 01:45 PM   #13
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I have a 280 Rem with a 26" that I reload for. It has a medium bull barrel and it's taken animals from 30yrds to over 250yrds. If the 280AI shoots like we've all heard it's a hard caliber to beat and it will kick a lot less than a 7STW.
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Old 11-13-2018, 07:29 PM   #14
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Why not split the difference and go with a 7 Rem Mag? It'll do 90% of what a 7mm STW will do with much greater ammo/reloading component availability and less cost. I was thinking along the same lines as you recently and ended up building a 7RM. Hard to beat the old standbys when it comes to practicality. Just my $.02.
This.

I have a 28 Nosler and while it is definitely a long range hammer a 7rm is no slouch and only a couple hundred fps slower and ammo and brass is much cheaper and much much easier to find. My next purchase will be a 7rm.
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Old 11-13-2018, 07:51 PM   #15
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A 280AI will do what a 7mag will do, but with a non-belted standard head case. I personally would opt for the 280AI unless you are talking past 1000 yds then I would be looking at either a 7STW, or 28 Nosler if not stepping up to the big 30s. My choice would be the 280AI as its just such a versatile round with a much longer barrel life and lower recoil which would make spotting misses and hits much easier at distance.

According to nosler load data, the 280 AI is about 150 FPS slower than a 7 mag, so no the 280 AI wont do what a 7 mag will and, add to the list that ammo is not everywhere and, if you shoot 280 in a pinch you will lose even more power, and 280 is not even as common as a 7 mag.

So i would have to go with the 7 rem mag guys
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Old 11-13-2018, 08:26 PM   #16
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The .280 AI is already a little over bore capacity, meaning you get a very modest increase in performance out of any larger case in that bore size. Mostly just use more powder and shoot out the barrel much quicker. I have a .280 AI, and a 7mm Remington mag, the difference in performance in those two is negligible. The 7RUM will burn more powder, give you a LITTLE more performance, if the last few FPS is what you are after, and MUCH abbreviated barrel life... JMHO..
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Old 11-13-2018, 08:40 PM   #17
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The .280 AI is already a little over bore capacity, meaning you get a very modest increase in performance out of any larger case in that bore size. Mostly just use more powder and shoot out the barrel much quicker. I have a .280 AI, and a 7mm Remington mag, the difference in performance in those two is negligible. The 7RUM will burn more powder, give you a LITTLE more performance, if the last few FPS is what you are after, and MUCH abbreviated barrel life... JMHO..

280ai 2950

7 MAG 3130

7RUM 3300

Those are all top velocities out of a 24 inch barrel from hodgdon load data for 150 grain bullets, i would say both the mag rounds are a considerable step up in performance over the 280 AI. Any time you go for big velocities you are going to burn barrels faster, if barrel life is your major concern a 308 would be the way to go
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Old 11-13-2018, 09:00 PM   #18
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According to nosler load data, the 280 AI is about 150 FPS slower than a 7 mag, so no the 280 AI wont do what a 7 mag will and, add to the list that ammo is not everywhere and, if you shoot 280 in a pinch you will lose even more power, and 280 is not even as common as a 7 mag.



So i would have to go with the 7 rem mag guys


150fps slower yes, but to have the non belted case, less powder capacity, lower recoil, etc the 280AI shines over the 7mm. And that’s coming from a guy who is a 7mag fan. Plus the OP said he handloads so the availability of factory ammo is mute.


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Old 11-13-2018, 09:19 PM   #19
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150fps slower yes, but to have the non belted case, less powder capacity, lower recoil, etc the 280AI shines over the 7mm. And that’s coming from a guy who is a 7mag fan. Plus the OP said he handloads so the availability of factory ammo is mute.


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\

Might as well go with the 7-08 then it will do 2800 with a 150 with less powder and recoil and more efficiency than the 280 AI, but the OP said he wanted the BEST for long range hunting and that equals horsepower, so might as well go big, or use a 7-08 and talk efficiency and recoil management
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Old 11-13-2018, 09:37 PM   #20
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6.5 PRC

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Old 11-13-2018, 10:55 PM   #21
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This.

I have a 28 Nosler and while it is definitely a long range hammer a 7rm is no slouch and only a couple hundred fps slower and ammo and brass is much cheaper and much much easier to find. My next purchase will be a 7rm.
I had my 7RM built with a 1:8 twist so I could use the 195 Berger. At 2850 fps it carries 1000 ft/lbs out to 1200 yards. The 28 Nosler increases that range to 1400 yards which didn't seem to be worth the extra ammo expense, barrel length, and need of a muzzle brake. Recoil is light enough that my 13-yr old son can shoot it and the faster twist has had no effect on accuracy or MV of the lighter 160 Accubonds I use most of the time.
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Old 11-14-2018, 10:17 AM   #22
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In your brain pan which one hits the mark? IMO 99% of shooting is phycological and muscle memory.
Two guys can shoot the same "gun" and the result will be different.
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Old 11-16-2018, 07:44 PM   #23
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Douglas or Kreiger barrel?
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Old 11-16-2018, 07:51 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by canny View Post
150fps slower yes, but to have the non belted case, less powder capacity, lower recoil, etc the 280AI shines over the 7mm. And that’s coming from a guy who is a 7mag fan. Plus the OP said he handloads so the availability of factory ammo is mute.


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I disagree. The 280 AI doesn’t “shine” over the 7mag. The 280 AI is about as perfect a cartridge ever concieved for North America. But to say it “outshines” the 7mag is a stretch.
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Old 11-18-2018, 12:09 AM   #25
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I have a 280ai and it has become my favorite rifle. I also have a 300win and a 7mm mag in almost the same configuration. 25” proof research barrel on the ai and 26” on the 7mm. I like shooting both but the longest I shoot at any deer would be about 500yds tops. That being said I’ve started taking longer shots at pigs and smacked one last weekend at 679 yrds with a 140ttsx and he dropped on the spot because I spined him. This 280ai has seen the field much more then the other 2. And for some reason I feel that my 280 has a handicap to it, super accurate. I load 140AB to 3100, 140TTSX to 3080, 150ABLR to 3055 and 160AB to a little over 3000. The powder it likes the best is H4831sc and my most recent load with RL16 It really likes too. I also use federal 215m primers all across the board on it. I’ve been working up some 168 vld loads that are looking promising for longer range plinking at pigs. I just haven’t gotten it nailed down yet.
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Old 11-18-2018, 12:49 AM   #26
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Who uses a 24" tube to test top level velocities of the most efficient Ackley round ever made & then compared to other belted mags made to feel they are even in the same family / future generation??...I've seen standard 24"tube speeds using the 30-06 parent case with the lighter usable bullets for deer hitting the desired 3k/ft.easily achieved.

The 280ai gets her velocity readings of a 7mag with less powder & substantially less felt recoil which is even more outstanding when you compare the cases by volume side by side. Both great rounds but the 280ai is the superior cal / round in terms of efficiency with performance No other current case design in her fight class can equal the results with such minimal case capacity.

Name a round that can touch a 120gr bullet at 3400fps out of 26" tube with a case capacity of the 30-06 & recoils like a 25-06

Last edited by Artos; 11-18-2018 at 01:25 AM.
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Old 11-18-2018, 08:41 AM   #27
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Name a round that can touch a 120gr bullet at 3400fps out of 26" tube with a case capacity of the 30-06 & recoils like a 25-06
I have a 6.5 Gibbs that can do that each and every day and twice on Sunday.. I normally run 140’s though at a little over 3200fps.
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Old 11-18-2018, 09:01 AM   #28
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... surprised Stick1 hasn't chimed in. 280 AI is one of his favorites
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Old 11-18-2018, 09:02 AM   #29
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I have a 6.5 Gibbs that can do that each and every day and twice on Sunday.. I normally run 140’s though at a little over 3200fps.
...PRC maybe I'll have to check speeds
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Old 11-18-2018, 12:00 PM   #30
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Name a round that can touch a 120gr bullet at 3400fps out of 26" tube with a case capacity of the 30-06 & recoils like a 25-06

According to hodgdon a 3006 can do it but with a 125 grain bullet and less powder, but fanboy on brother, fanboy on.....


PS recoil is a direct result of bullet weight, powder weight, velocity, and rifle weight, but the laws of physics never stopped anyone else on the internet, so don't let it discourage you
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Old 11-20-2018, 08:28 AM   #31
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So this thread went from 280 AI vs 7mm STW... to 280 AI vs 7mm Rem Mag.

Apparently 280 AI vs 7mm STW are two different beasts to compare?

280 for shorter ranges, shorter barrel, longer barrel life, less powder.

7mm Rem Mag for longer ranges, longer barrel, shorter barrel life, more powder.

Framing hammer vs sledge hammer...? Am I off?

(I was recently given a 7mm STW and the had the pucker effect of $50 per 20 rounds...on the cheap side.)
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Old 11-20-2018, 10:23 AM   #32
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I built an STW back in the late 80's early 90's when Layne Simpson first wrote about it. Their was no info to speak of or components either, no brass for sure or reloading data.

It was all trial and error. I remember changing a load from large rifle mag primers to match and getting some serious over pressures to the point the bolt didn't want to open and when it did all stamping on the case was gone and I couldn't tell where the primer was, it was all flat brass.


I took the rifle to Tanzania for a 21 day hunt, and killed everything from a dik dik to and eland with it at ranges out to over 800 yards.
It is a killer for sure especially on animals that are big enough to absorb the energy

I've had several 300 mags and prefer the STW recoil is moderate and you don't need a break on it
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Old 11-20-2018, 10:43 AM   #33
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I built an STW back in the late 80's early 90's when Layne Simpson first wrote about it. Their was no info to speak of or components either, no brass for sure or reloading data.

It was all trial and error. I remember changing a load from large rifle mag primers to match and getting some serious over pressures to the point the bolt didn't want to open and when it did all stamping on the case was gone and I couldn't tell where the primer was, it was all flat brass.


I took the rifle to Tanzania for a 21 day hunt, and killed everything from a dik dik to and eland with it at ranges out to over 800 yards.
It is a killer for sure especially on animals that are big enough to absorb the energy

I've had several 300 mags and prefer the STW recoil is moderate and you don't need a break on it
That is my story as well. I still have that issue of Shooting Times laying around somewhere. Looking back I think some of Layne's loads were very hot. I made cases with 8mm Mag and ire forming 300 H&H's back then.
Dale Wise in San Antonio did the rifle work for me. That thing is in a safe collecting dust and hasn't been shot in 25 years It was a hammer back in the day though.
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Old 11-20-2018, 10:49 AM   #34
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280 would be my preference.
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Old 11-20-2018, 11:08 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ecobeast View Post
Plan to use it for . . . longe range plinking in general.

This sentence alone tells you to go with the AI.

The STW is a worse barrel burner than the 300 win mag. Average barrel life I have seen is around 8-900 rounds with the very elusive exception being 1000 or better. Unless you want to rebarrel in the near future stick with the AI.



Sierracharlie out…
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Old 11-20-2018, 12:17 PM   #36
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That is my story as well. I still have that issue of Shooting Times laying around somewhere. Looking back I think some of Layne's loads were very hot. I made cases with 8mm Mag and ire forming 300 H&H's back then.
Dale Wise in San Antonio did the rifle work for me. That thing is in a safe collecting dust and hasn't been shot in 25 years It was a hammer back in the day though.
I to made cases from 8MM, and still have them. I thought Layne's loads were conservative. The first 200 rounds or so I fired were all thru a chrono and I surpassed his loads by a few hundred fps.


Mine to is a safe queen but I did bring it out last year and some 20 year old loads I had to see how it would shoot. It about ripped the 9' steel plate I have set up at 400 yards off the chain. My boys who shoot a lot of 260 Rem, 7mm-08 that sort of stuff were like OMG
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Old 11-20-2018, 01:43 PM   #37
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I have both.
The Ackley launches 140 Accubonds at 3200 and 168 Long Range Accubonds at just under 3000. Both shoot to same point of impact.

The STW with IMR 8133 launches the 140 Accubonds at 3450.

Brass for the STW is now being sold by Hornady, prior to that it was pretty expensive as it was made in limited runs by Winchester and Remington.
Nosler mkes brass for it too but their cases run about $3.00 a piece.

Hunting and plinking the 280 AI will get the nod.
Hunting at long ranges or long range shooting the 7STW shines.

IF I were to do it again on the STW ?
I'd go 26 Nosler and not have to deal with the belted case.
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Old 11-20-2018, 11:56 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by Briar Friar View Post
So this thread went from 280 AI vs 7mm STW... to 280 AI vs 7mm Rem Mag.

Apparently 280 AI vs 7mm STW are two different beasts to compare?

280 for shorter ranges, shorter barrel, longer barrel life, less powder.

7mm Rem Mag for longer ranges, longer barrel, shorter barrel life, more powder.

Framing hammer vs sledge hammer...? Am I off?

(I was recently given a 7mm STW and the had the pucker effect of $50 per 20 rounds...on the cheap side.)
Dangit...I misspake... and meant 7mm STW.

800 yards on a heavy animal is awesome!
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Old 11-21-2018, 09:28 AM   #39
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I have both.
The Ackley launches 140 Accubonds at 3200 and 168 Long Range Accubonds at just under 3000. Both shoot to same point of impact.

The STW with IMR 8133 launches the 140 Accubonds at 3450.

Brass for the STW is now being sold by Hornady, prior to that it was pretty expensive as it was made in limited runs by Winchester and Remington.
Nosler mkes brass for it too but their cases run about $3.00 a piece.

Hunting and plinking the 280 AI will get the nod.
Hunting at long ranges or long range shooting the 7STW shines.

IF I were to do it again on the STW ?
I'd go 26 Nosler and not have to deal with the belted case.
I mispoke as well, that should read 28 Nosler.
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