What is in a cartridge name? (Part 3)

Written by Sierra Bullets Ballistic Technician Philip Mahin

Here we are, back to another round of different naming systems. So far, we have explored the way names have evolved from military designations to sporting cartridges and how others got their name from cartridge dimensions. You have undoubtedly noticed there are some cartridges that don’t necessarily fall in the before mentioned categories. Take for instance the 30-338. The cartridge gets its name from necking a 338 Winchester Magnum down to use a 30 cal bullet. You will notice the 30-338 designation lists the new bullet diameter first and what it came from second. On the opposite end of this is would be something like the 400/350 Rigby. This cartridge gets its name from necking down a 400 Purdey case to use a 35 cal bullet. Two names are common on a lot of cartridge, namely Remington and Winchester. Some examples are 243Win, 270Win, 308Win, and others still are 25-06Rem, 7-08Rem, and 35Rem. After these, you get into the cartridges that were named after the inventor, 257 Roberts and 35 Whelen are just two, albeit a very good two but this is just the tip of the iceberg. Maybe, someday we’ll be writing about the new wizbanghooziwhatsit that you’ve got floating around in that head of yours, just remember to name it appropriately.

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