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Can someone rank rifle calibers from .50 BMG to .308 for me?

Discussion in 'Caliber Corner' started by alfred10, Jun 3, 2010.

  1. alfred10


    May 18, 2008
    I want to compare rifle calibers from largest most powerful to smallest from .50BMG to .308.

    I mean like .44 mag, 41. mag, 10 mm, .357 mag, .45 acp, .40, .357sig,, .380, .32acp, 25 acp, .22 lr
  2. RMTactical

    RMTactical CLM

    Oct 7, 2000
    Behind an AR-15
    That might be practically impossible. There are so many calibers, who even knows them all?

  3. tk47


    May 27, 2010
    You sure you don't mean pistol calibers cuz thats what you have listed, with the exception of the .44mag, .357 mag, and .22 lr which are used in both pistols and certain rifles.
  4. hurley842002


    Nov 18, 2009
    Littleton, Co
    I believe he's using the Pistol calibers as an example of how he would like to list the Rifle calibers. Good luck
  5. RedHaze

    RedHaze Handgunner

    Aug 23, 2009
    SE WA
    Not sure how the heck we're going to rank rifle calibers for you... there's a bunch. :dunno:

    (From wikipedia)

    Common centerfire

    .17 Remington
    .17 Remington Fireball (based on the wildcat .17 Mach IV)
    .17-357 RG
    .191 (4.85mm SAA)
    .204 Ruger
    .218 Bee
    .219 Zipper
    .20 Tactical
    .20 VarTarg
    .22 BR Remington
    .22 Hornet
    .22 PPC
    .22 Spitfire (MMJ-5.7, 5.7mm MMJ)
    .220 Russian
    .220 Swift
    .221 Fireball
    .22-250 Remington (.22-250 Ackley Improved)
    .22/30 (T65 Duplex)
    .221 Remington Fireball
    .222 Remington
    .222 Remington Magnum
    .223 MINISAS
    .223 Remington (.223 AI)
    .223 WSSM
    .224 Weatherby Magnum
    .225 Winchester
    .240 Weatherby Magnum
    .243 Winchester (.243 AI)
    .243 WSSM
    .244 H&H Magnum
    .244 Remington (6 mm Remington)
    .250-3000 Savage
    .256 Winchester Magnum
    .256 Newton
    .25-06 Remington
    .25-20 Winchester
    .25-35 Winchester (6.5 x 52R)
    .25 Remington
    .25 WSSM
    .257 Roberts (.257 Roberts +P, .257 Roberts Ackley Improved)
    .257 Weatherby Magnum
    .260 Remington
    .264 warrior magnum
    .264 Winchester Magnum
    .270 Weatherby Magnum
    .270 Winchester
    .270 Winchester Short Magnum
    .270 Sabi
    .276 Pedersen
    .280 British
    .280 Remington (a.k.a.7 mm Express Remington)
    .280 Ross (a.k.a.280 Rimless Nitro Express)
    .284 Winchester
    .30 Carbine
    .30 Newton
    .30 Remington
    .30 Remington AR
    .30 TC
    .30-30 Winchester
    .30-06 Springfield
    .30-40 Krag (.30 Army)
    .30-378 Weatherby Magnum
    .300 H&H Magnum
    .300 Remington SA Ultra Mag
    .300 Remington Ultra Magnum
    .300 Ruger Compact Magnum
    .300 Savage
    .300 Weatherby Magnum
    .300 Winchester Short Magnum
    .300 Winchester Magnum
    .303 British
    .303 Savage
    .307 Winchester
    .308 Marlin Express
    .308 Norma Magnum
    .308 Winchester
    .32-20 Winchester (.32 WCF, .32-20 Marlin, .32 Colt Lightning)
    .32-40 Ballard
    .32-40 Winchester
    .32 Remington
    .32 Winchester Self-Loading
    .32 Winchester Special
    .325 WSM (Winchester Short Magnum)
    .33 Winchester (.33 WCF)
    .338-378 Weatherby Magnum
    .338 Federal
    .338 Lapua Magnum
    .338 Marlin express
    .338 Remington Ultra Magnum
    .338 Ruger Compact Magnum
    .338 Sabi
    .338 Winchester Magnum
    .340 Weatherby Magnum
    .348 Winchester
    .35 Newton
    .35 Remington
    .35 Whelen
    .35 Whelen Improved
    .35 Winchester
    .35 Winchester Self-Loading
    .350 Remington Magnum
    .351 Winchester Self-Loading
    .356 Winchester
    .358 Norma Magnum
    .358 Winchester
    .375 H&H Magnum
    .375 Ruger
    .375 Remington Ultra Magnum
    .375 Weatherby Magnum
    .375 Whelen (.375-06)
    .375 Winchester
    .376 Steyr
    .378 Weatherby Magnum
    .38-40 Winchester
    .38-55 Winchester
    .40-60 Remington
    .400 H&H Magnum
    .400 Tembo
    .401 Winchester Self-Loading
    .404 Jeffery (10.75 x 73)
    .405 Winchester
    .408 CheyTac
    .416 Barrett
    .416 Remington Magnum
    .416 Rigby
    .416 Weatherby Magnum
    .417 (High velocity cartridge for the M82, M93, M95 and M107 Barrett Firearms Company rifles)
    .43 Mauser
    .44-40 Winchester
    .44 Remington Magnum
    .444 Marlin
    .45-70 Government
    .45-90 Sharps
    .450 Bushmaster
    .450 Marlin
    .450 Rigby
    .458 Express
    .458 Lott
    .458 Sabi
    .458 SOCOM
    .458 Winchester Magnum
    .460 Weatherby Magnum
    .465 H&H Magnum
    .470 Nitro Express

    4.85mm SAA (.191)
    5.56x45mm NATO
    5.6x50mm Magnum
    5.6 x 52R (.22 Savage Hi-Power)
    5.6 x 61 SE (5.6 x 61 Vom Hofe Super Express)
    5.8x42mm DBP87
    6 x 35 mm
    6 mm BR Remington
    6 mm PPC
    6 mm Musgrave
    6 mm Remington (.244 Remington)
    6.5 Jonson
    6.5 mm Creedmoor
    6.5 mm Grendel
    6.5 mm Remington Magnum
    6.5x50mm Arisaka
    6.5x52mm Mannlicher-Carcano
    6.5x53mmR Mannlicher
    6.5x54mm Mannlicher-Schoenauer
    6.5x57mm Mauser
    6.5x68mm (also known as the 6.5 x 68 RWS, 6.5 x 68 Schüler or the 6.5 x 68 Von Hofe Express)
    6.8 mm Remington SPC
    7 mm-08 Remington
    7-30 Waters
    7 mm BR Remington
    7 mm Express Remington (a.k.a. .280 Remington)
    7 mm Remington Magnum
    7 mm Remington SA Ultra Mag
    7 mm Remington Ultra Magnum
    7 mm STW
    7 mm Weatherby Magnum
    7 mm WSM (Winchester Short Magnum)
    7x33mm Sako
    7x57mm Mauser (.275 Rigby)
    7x61mm Sharpe & Hart
    7x64mm Brenneke
    7x65mmR Brenneke
    7.5x55mm Schmidt Rubin
    7.5x57mm MAS mod. 1924 7.5x54mm MAS mod. 1929
    7.62 mm caliber
    7.62x25mm Tokarev
    7.62x45mm vz. 52
    7.62x51mm NATO
    7.62 x 54R (rimmed) (7.62 Russian)
    7.63x25mm Mauser
    7.62 Jonson
    7.65x22mm Parabellum
    7.65x53mm Argentine (7.65x53mm Mauser)
    7.63x54mm Greek Mannlicher-Schoenauer
    7.7x58mm Arisaka
    7.92x33mm Kurz
    7.92x36mm EPK
    7.92x57mm Mauser (8 mm Mauser or 8x57 JS)
    8 mm Lebel
    8 mm Remington Magnum
    8x56mm Mannlicher-Schoenauer
    8x58mm RD (rimmed danish)
    8x60mm S
    8x64mm S
    8x68mm S
    9x19mm NATO (Parabellum)
    9x56mm Mannlicher-Schoenauer
    9x57mm Mauser
    9.3x64mm Brenneke
    9.3x66mm Sako
    9.5x57mm Mannlicher-Schoenauer (.375 Rimless Nitro Express x 2-1/4")
    11x60mm Mauser


    .14 Walker Hornet
    .17 Ackley Bee
    .17 CCM
    .17 Hornet
    .17 PMC/Aguila
    .17 Mach IV (now commercialized as .17 Remington Fireball)
    .17 PPC
    .17/23 SMC
    .17-357 RG (.172" Wildcat based on the 357 SIG)
    .19 Calhoon Hornet
    .19 Badger
    .20 VarTarg
    .20 Tactical
    .219 Donaldson Wasp
    .22 Cheetah
    .22 Eargesplitten Loudenboomer
    .222 Rimmed
    .22-243 Middlestead
    .223 AI
    .240 Apex (.240 Belted Nitro Express and .240 Magnum Flanged)
    .264 warrior magnum (6.5x40 mm)
    .275 H&H Magnum
    Modern .275 H&H (Based on Full length 375 Ruger case)
    Modern 7mm Rem mag (based on 375 Ruger case)
    Modern 300 H&H (based on full length 375 Ruger)
    .30 USA
    .309 jdj
    .30-06 JDJ
    .300 Dakota
    .300 ICL Grizzly
    .300 Lapua Magnum
    .300 Remington American Magnum
    .300 Whisper (.300 Fireball)
    .330 Dakota
    .338-06 A-Square
    .338 Whisper
    .338 Voschol
    .338 x 57 O'Connor
    .375 Dakota
    .375 Whisper
    Modern .375 H&H (based on full length 375 Ruger)
    .40-65 Winchester
    .40-70 Sharps
    .408 Chey Tac
    .416 Barrett
    .416 Taylor
    .416 Whisper
    Modern 416 (based on full length 375 Ruger)
    .425 Westley Richards
    .44 Henry
    .45-90 Sharps
    .45-110 Sharps
    .45-120 Sharps
    .450 Watts Magnum
    Modern 450 (2.598" 404 Case)
    Modern 460 (2.850" 404 Case)
    .458 SOCOM
    .470 Capstick
    .475 OKH
    .475 Ackley
    .500 Phantom


    4.5mm mkr
    5mm Craig
    5mm/35 SMc
    6mm BRX
    6mm Dasher
    6mm XC
    6x45 mm
    6 x 47 Swiss Match (6mm/222 Mag)
    6.5 Grendel (6.5x39mm)
    6.5x40mm (.264 warrior magnum)
    6.5 x 47 Lapua
    6.5x55 Swedish Mauser
    6.5 x 57
    7mm Dakota
    7mm Gradle Express
    7x54mm Fournier
    7.62 Thumper
    7.82 Lazzeroni Patriot
    7.82 Lazzeroni Warbird
    10,4 x 38 Vetterli (US: ".41 Swiss")
    10,4 x 47 Italian Vetterli
  6. degoodman

    degoodman Out of Columbus

    Jun 7, 2004
    Marysville, OH
    I don't know if you're looking at finding ALL of the calibers, because good luck there. Also, once you're bigger than the .375 H&H, you're into stuff that's not all that useful in this country anyway. but, here's a stab with some of the more common suspects.

    .50 BMG
    .460 Weatherby Mag
    .458 Lott
    .378 Weatherby Mag
    .416 Remington Mag
    .458 Winchester Mag
    .416 Rigby
    .404 Jeffries
    .375 Remington Ultra Mag
    .375 H&H
    .338 Lapua
    .338-.378 Weatherby Mag
    .338 Remington Ultra Mag
    .30-378 Weatherby Mag
    .338 Winchester Mag
    .300 Remington Ultra Mag
    .450 Marlin
    .444 Marlin
    .45-70 (Modern Handloads, not BPCR loads)
    .300 Winchester Magnum
    .300 WSM
    7mm Remington Magnum
    .35 Wheelen

    That's a rough list, with lots of the common candidates. while I consider it roughly ordered, you're really looking at "classes" of calibers that are all roughly peers. .50 BMG stands on its own. Everything from the .460 on down to the .375 RUM are all generating 5000+ - 6000 FPE, and kick like missouri mules in the process. The stuff from the .375 H&H down to through the .338's are all generating 3500 - 5000 FPE, and while still heavy recoiling, are definitely manageable by many more shooters than the african calibers. The stuff smaller than that, the old or new straightwall .45's and .44 class cartridges, and the .30 calibers all come in somewhere between 2800 FPE and 3500 FPE, with the exception of the two exotics, the .30-378 and the .300 RUM, which leap up into .338 class performance.

    Within each class, there are efficient ways of skinning the cat, classics like the .458 Win Mag, .375 H&H, and .338 Win Mag get you to class typical energies with obtainable brass, reasonable powder charges, etc.

    Then you can go off towards exotics, which burn massive columns of powder in expensive, hard to obtain brass, to drive a sub-caliber bullet so fast that it moves up a weight class in terms of the energies its sending. .338-.378 Weatherby, .30-.378 and .300 RUM and the like are on this list. I don't quite get the reasons for these calibers, specialist rounds like the .338 Lapua aside, because once you're up into the .375+ class rounds, you're not shooting at far away critters, and sending the heaviest slug you can matters more than sending a light one at Warp 9.

    There's a list, have fun with it.
  7. Butch

    Butch RetiredDinosaur Millennium Member CLM

    Dec 17, 1998
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2010
  8. VoodooChile

    VoodooChile noob

    Jan 8, 2006
    Detroit MI
    inbetween the .50BMG and the .460 Weatherby you have some goofball safari rounds that are extremely rare such as the .700 & .600 Nitro Express, the .585 Nyati, and the .577 T-rex. Oh, and the .505 Gibbs too!
  9. Dean22


    May 10, 2010
    Dallas TX
    Well putting them in order from smallest to largest is nice but doesn't explain the whole picture. Barrett for example has designed a round .416 Barrett that blows everything out of the water near it's size.
  10. mdehoogh


    Jun 28, 2009
    Fort Worth, TX
    Here's a nice picture. Click it to zoom in, its pretty large

  11. alfred10


    May 18, 2008
    Wow didnt realize there are so many. Guess I will rank from large to high the more common american rounds. IS the .416 whetherby the largest common round under .50 BMG?

    What round does the power of a 3 inch 12 gauge magnum slug compare to? Debating on what to get for Grizzly bear protection.

    I think an M1A socom would be a good defense gun but not sure if its large enough for a charging grizzly. The .308 has a pointed tip and seems like it would be good for penetrating bears compared to the flat 45.70. Also like that the trajectory of a .308 is flat.
    Next I am looking at the 45.70 but it has a rainbow trajectory. Finally looking at a mossber590A1 but not sure if a slug out of this is enough.
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2010
  12. degoodman

    degoodman Out of Columbus

    Jun 7, 2004
    Marysville, OH
    Now we're getting somewhere. Now you have a question that we have a chance of answering.

    The Weatherby rounds are not all that common. They're not completely obscure, but they aren't everywhere either, especially the big boys.

    Of the calibers larger than .30 calibers, the most common 4 are probably the .45-70, .338 Win Mag, .375 H&H, and .458 Win Mag, and probably in that order. The bigger the round you're talking about, the less need most people have for it, and the harder it is to operate. the .416 and .458 caliber cartridges are built for taking african game that can weigh over a ton, or in the case of an elephant, several tons. Even the largest North American game is nowhere close to that. realistically speaking, there isn't anything in North America that a .375 won't take cleanly, and the same probably holds true for a .338 Win Mag.

    For comparison, a 12 GA slug is delivering between 1800 and 2500 FPE depending on the load. A slug is delivering less energy than most of the common .30 calibers.

    For bears, the .45-70, with modern full power loads, not powderpuff cowboy loads or stuff that a trapdoor springfield will eat, will far outclass most of the .30 caliber toys. Any hunting appropriate load in .30 is an expanding bullet. if its pointy and non-expanding it WILL NOT WORK ON DANGEROUS GAME. Someone will come up with an anticdote or a new article saying look here, it did this one time so you're full of s**t, but trust me, its true. FMJ or OTM bullets won't stop a bear. Heavy flat faced .458's will.

    At ranges you'll be potentially defending yourself from a bear, trajectory will mean NOTHING to you. range is going to be 50 yards in, so no matter what you're using, its going to be flat at those ranges.

    A SOCOM is not a good woods gun. They're heavy, .308 is on the bottom end of what's useful for real bears, and they're not legal for hunting in many of the places where you're going to risk a bear encounter. And that's important, because hunting and cleaning a carcass is one of the things that will legitimately draw in a bear on you in the field.

    I know a fair number of guides out west in bear country, and more than one of them carry a Marlin guide gun in .45-70 as their backup gun. They're relatively light, compact, and have the power it takes to drop all but the largest coastal and river fed brownies. In places where REALLY big bears might accost you, Kodiak Island brownies, river fed bears, polar bears and the like, the few people I know who play that game generally are packing a .375, and one guy I know has a .458 Winny.

    I'll allude to some other recent threads where the truth of the matter is that if you educate yourself about how to operate in bear country, the odds of an encounter are pretty low, and bear spray will probably be more useful to you than a big rifle. But if you're doing something that legitimately creates the possibility of running on to a bear, or drawing one in on you, the rifle you want is NOT a tacti-cool anything in an american service caliber from the last century or so. Get a lever action guide gun, or a bolt gun in a .338 or bigger if a grizzly in a possibility. If its the biggest species around is a blackie, then a .30 is plenty of medicine.
  13. Dean22


    May 10, 2010
    Dallas TX
    Yeah if you looking for something that will give you a lot of punch in close range situations like you described, I'd have to agree that bear spray might be a better bet. If I had to put my life into the hands of anything in that situation it would be the largest caliber AR I could afford to buy/shoot with often enough to be comfortable with. Some might be more comfortable with a large caliber hand gun though instead of an AR.
  14. Berto

    Berto woo woo

    Sep 15, 2003
    .308< .50bmg
  15. I'd rank these 50 and 38 naval calibers as top tier;


    Bob :supergrin:
  16. Chonny


    Mar 30, 2010
    Edmond, OK
    .408 CheyTac
    .416 Barrett
  17. method


    Mar 27, 2002
    Cleveland, OH
    Go to a book store, buy yourself a copy of the current Gun Digest. In the back, there are tables listing the ballistics of all the currently commercially available cartridges.
  18. nickcarr


    Jun 6, 2002
    Bellevue, WA
    Don't forget the new 20mm tactical load that the FBI is using as a long-range sniper solution. Yes, I said 20mm.

    Check out Tactical Weapons magazine for details. The rifle is 7ft long and weighs 110lbs (without silencer and fancy optics.)

    In case you're wondering, the range is around 4900 yards! :wow:

    Take a guess which one it is:


    More info on the rifle here:
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2010
  19. RedHaze

    RedHaze Handgunner

    Aug 23, 2009
    SE WA
    Not exactly a brush gun though.
  20. 2nd Mar Div

    2nd Mar Div

    Nov 9, 2008
    Far right
    All this big bore talk and you guys left out the .500 Jeffery! sheesh!