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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Has anyone done anything with the Rigby case? Seems there's a lot of wildcats out there off the Jefferey case, but I haven't seen much on the Rigby even though it's fatter and longer.
Seems you could get close to Weatherby factory ballistics with it, since RW's is basically the Rigby with a belt.
In particular, I'd be interested in 33- 35- and 37-bore.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Hey, good question there, bud.
I did some looking around, and it looks like the 338 Lapua is made from a shortened and improved Rigby, and the 450 Rigby and 450 Dakota are as well.
Maybe with the influx of CZ 550 magnums into the US, you may see somebody using that 3.8" COL on some super-ultra-mega-uber magnums.
 

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Isn't the 338 Lapua based on the Rigby?

I don't think there would be any advantage or noticeable difference between the Rigby cat and the various Wby, Dakota or Lazzeroni offerings. It takes a bunch of really slow powders and hot primers. Combinations not known for consistentancy.
 

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Rigby wildcats

sideironjohn,

I'm quite sure that the Rigby case has been wildcatted up and down at least once for each caliber. I know for a fact that there is a 30-416 Rigby on the full case and the 338 Lapua is a shortened version of the Rigby. You mentioned the big Dakotas. There is the 300 Phoenix on a 2.5" case and the 30 Cody Express, again on the full case.

What you find is that the case capacity doesn't work in anyone's favor when it gets to be that large. The barrels need to be long, sometimes 40" plus, just to get that huge amount of powder to burn. These are not what I would call portable for any form of hunting that is done on foot. Now, vehicles and shooting tables used for long distance hunting and shooting are a different story. Testing the full case Rigby wildcats against the somewhat smaller and commercially available 300 RUM will get you results of very similar velocities yet significant savings in powder. So the smaller case is more efficient.

These jumbo cases really shine when you let them work in the larger bore, dangerous game rifles becoming more and more popular these days. The large cross section bores coupled with cavernous case capacity and heavier bullets get you incredible increases in energy without having to resort to light speed velocities. The original 416 Rigby is still successful but is being supplimented with the likes of the 416/577 Rimless and the 585 Nyati. The Nyati reportedly has a muzzle energy of 10,600 ft/lbs. with a 750 grain soft point bullet. I've seen this case necked down as far as .375 also. Not my idea of a good time!

Don't forget the other classic biggies either, the 500 Jeffery and the 505 Gibbs.

I have listed a couple of other sites for you in a PM.

Best.
 

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Wildcats on the Rigby case

Since this is where I earn my living I will put in my two cents worth. All of the "Canadian mags" are based on the .416 Rigby case as is the 450 Rigby, .3754 Rigby and my creation the .366 DGW. This cartridge is on page 201 of the tenth edition of Cartridges of the World. It pushes a 300 grain bullet at 2900+ FPS and a 250 grainer at 3250. As you can see the Rigby case has a lot to offer, far mor then the Remington improved 404 case.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the response, Judson. First, let me say how very cool it is that you can earn a living wildcatting. You are a lucky man.
If you check the specs for the Canadian mags, I think you'll see they're based on the Jeffery.
The perfromance of your 9.3 is quite impressive indeed. Should handle anything you put in front of it. There's also a 358 RG, a 378 Weatherby necked down, and with the same venturi shoulder. Pretty hot stuff.
Back when I wrote the first post, I was looking for a big elk-buster that could also handle bruin if it came to that. I chose the Jeffery case, for a number of reasons, most of which boil down to efficiency vs performance. I can get most of the speeds of a Rigby case with much less recoil, and at any rate way more than I need. I have 280g North Forks ushering forth at around 2950 (but I don't push it that hard, more like right at 2900) and 250's go to 3100, maybe beyond, though I haven't tried. This is a 26" bbl, also. The Weatherby case gave the 358 RG another 100-150 fps, so the gain is there, but he's also using about 28% more powder to get 5% more speed. Not my idea of a good trade. There's some monster 308 and 338's made on improved Lapua cases, and it would seem a natural fit to try that case necked to 375 and trimmed to a 3.6" COL, loaded with 350g solids at maybe 2600 for the bigunz. Add a 270g of your choice, and forget the second gun. Sort of a 378 K-T beltless.

And I agree with Crispin to a point. I think the smaller calibers do have use for the bigger cases, but they need the longest bbl you're comfy with (26-7"?) and the heaviest reasonable bullet (.30 SD) for it to make any sense at all. Basically like the big brother of a 6.5-06 shooting 160g.

Have you had a chance to hunt with your creation? I'd love to hear stories.
Happy shooting!
Taylor
 

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I do not make my living doing Wildcats. My living comes from building custom rifles some of which are chambered for Wildcats. I love custom work and the Wildcats add to this. I built my .366 on a P17 action which I fitted with a P14 bolt so there would be no counter bore needed on the barrel. These actions are very under ratted and will swallow up huge cartridges with ease. As for hunting with the beast I have shot, (all one shot kills) everything from Springbok to Eland with 4 whitetails thrown in since I live up here in Maine. The cartridge has accounted for 42 one shot kills including moose, bear two Elands and some other tuff critters. 15 of these were from me and two trips to Africa. I have built five rifles chambered for this cartridge and as is true with any cartridge you have to hit them right but when you do the critter drops QUICKLY!!!!
 
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