.350 Legend

BY Herschel Smith
10 months, 2 weeks ago

While perusing this piece on new rifles from the SHOT show (most of which I find far too pricey), I ran across an ammunition type I hadn’t seen before, the .350 Legend.  That’s because it’s brand new.

The 2019 SHOT Show saw the release of the latest cartridge from Winchester—the .350 Legend. The new cartridge is a .223 case blown out to have straight walls, making it a perfectly viable choice for those states which require the use of a straight-walled rifle cartridge for deer hunting. The bullet diameter is listed as .357″, and the rimless design will require the cartridge to headspace off the case mouth.

Winchester is currently offering five different loads for the new cartridge: a 150-grain Deer Season XP at 2350 fps, a 180-grain Power-Point at 2100 fps, a 160-grain Power Max Bonded at 2225 fps, a very affordable 145-grain FMJ in the USA ammo line at 2350 fps, and a Super Suppressed 265-grain load at 1060 fps.

I had the opportunity to shoot the .350 Legend at SHOT Show’s Industry Day at the Range in a Winchester bolt-action rifle, and it was plenty accurate and pleasant on the shoulder. They had the Deer Season XP load and the USA Full Metal Jacket loads on hand; point of impact between the two was so close at 100 yards that a hunter could easily use the much more affordable FMJ ammunition for off-season practice as well as plinking, and switch to the Deer Season XP for hunting. In Winchester’s comparison to the veteran .30-30 Winchester, the .350 Legend shows to have an energy advantage of 120 ft.-lbs., yet delivers less recoil than the old deer classic.

It would appear that the idea is a straight-walled cartridge that isn’t quite the punch in the shoulder that the .450 Bushmaster is, but still with a lot of power.  I confess that I had thought before about the possibility of a carbine chambered for .357 Magnum.  This is a step up.  For the 150-grain bullet they get 2350 FPS, whereas by comparison, for the 300 Blackout at 125-grains, it’s pushing 2215 FPS.  It’s got the 300 BO beat.  They must have partnered with CMMG, because there’s already a gun for it.

CMMG makes nice-looking, well-functioning guns.

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Comments

  1. On February 1, 2019 at 3:22 am, Nosmo said:

    I’ve harbored – for years – a wondering about a .3565″ projectile (38 Special, 357 Magnum) from 5.56 cases. Specified OD of a 5.56 case is 9MM – .3543 inches – with wall thickness around .010″ – .012″, leaving an ID of ~.3323″, which is (about) 24 thousandths too small for a .3565″ projectile. While I contend that shortsightedness about future opportunities led to 5.56/.223 brass being designed too small from the outset, brass is ductile so stretching it to accommodate a .3565″ projectile is not difficult.

    A ~158 grain projectile at 1800-2500 FPS is a game changer for the 357 magnum cartridge that has demonstrated extremely successful performance from >4″ barrels. I do not understand why it took so long to get to this point (think: rimless .357 Maximum).

    300 Blackout is interesting, but .350 Legend is about the single greatest reason for removing SBRs from NFA I have ever seen, except perhaps for a similar device in the 10MM Magnum cartridge; a 12″ barreled suppressed Ruger PCC, similar to their 9MM version, in .350 Legend with a 12-18 round magazine answers nearly every home and personal defense question.

  2. On February 1, 2019 at 6:37 am, Ratus said:

    I’m liking this a lot more than .300 blowup.

    According to the SAMMI spec, you can’t accidentally chamber it in a 5.56 or .223 like 300 blackout.

    https://saami.org/technical-information/new-cartridge-chamber-drawings/

  3. On February 1, 2019 at 9:12 pm, BRVTVS said:

    They skipped right over the 200 and 220 grain loads, making comparison to a 35 Remington difficult.

  4. On February 1, 2019 at 11:06 pm, Herschel Smith said:

    @BRVTVS,

    Don’t know, it would appear they want to keep the weight down and velocity up, but I should point out that this round also has the 7.62×39 beat, at least at the muzzle.

  5. On February 2, 2019 at 1:18 am, Jorge said:

    It’s a semi-auto around .30-30 power levels, which is really nice. The 180gr bullet at 2100 FPS is beating .41 Magnum numbers out of a rifle in weight and speed. Ought to be able to handle anything in the Americas, without being massively overpowered. It sounds like a really great goldilocks round.

  6. On February 2, 2019 at 4:38 am, Dan said:

    A new face in an already crowded and competitive field. Only time will tell whether it fills a need or if it’s just another solution in search of an answer.

  7. On February 2, 2019 at 4:54 pm, Gryphon said:

    I’m with Dan there, the “Wildcat Cartridge” marketplace seems to have been Discovered by the major Gun/Ammo Manufacturers, in that there’s enough Buyers willing to try any new Ammo that can be somehow fitted into an AR Magazine.
    Not Knocking the “Experimenters” as such, but the flood of “Latest and Greatest”
    has me rolling my Eyes.

    p.s. My Grandfather’s Winchester Lever-Action .30-.30 Deerslayer is 70 Years Old, and still Puts them in the Freezer when I Want.

  8. On February 2, 2019 at 9:18 pm, MoralFracas said:

    A man with a plan and a 30/30, that’s the legend. “Don’t let a clothes salesman make a fool out of you” I used to tell my friends during the disco age. Time is short boys and girls. Think food.

  9. On February 3, 2019 at 2:10 pm, Ned said:

    Oh c’mon Gryphon – you mean there’s not a whizbang SuperShortMagnum in your future?

  10. On February 3, 2019 at 5:00 pm, Conrad said:

    There is a good article on this in the recent Guns and Ammo. (Seeing how Freddies got rid of their magazine section you might be out of luck), but it is a 200 yard gun for areas where they don’t want rounds traveling long distances before landing, think footballs. Sounds effective, compare it to the .300 PRC and you’ll see what I mean.

  11. On February 3, 2019 at 7:23 pm, Gryphon said:

    Ned- If the Magazine/Feed Issues can be Solved, why not an AR-10 in .30.30?

  12. On February 3, 2019 at 9:09 pm, Mike said:

    The reason for the 350L and 450BM is that ANY bottle neck, (think 30-30), rifle cartridge and any cartridge over a certain length, (think 45-70), are flat out illegal to hunt with in many ‘shotgun’ zones. Like both my hunting areas. What you see here is one solution to what many see as a problem, not a solution seeking one as some misguided souls seem to think. They fail to consider the three first rules of real-estate. Location, location, location. Being saddled with a slug gun for life some hunters just want to try something different and possibly more effective. The 30-06, 45-70, 30-30, 270 and on and on are just dandy if you can use one but for the rest of us some of these new straight walled offerings are a breath of fresh air. My Henry .45 Colt, Muzzleloader and crossbow all put deer in the freezer this year. My 30-30 and 30-06 never have. Hell, my pellet guns have put more meat in the freezer than those two, sad to say. That said the 450BM will easily triple my personal effective range with the 45C.
    If I had my choice I would usually carry the ought-6 but I don’t have that luxury at this point in my life. Hopefully someday travel to hunt will be in the cards. In short, the 450BM and 350L are two guns I can hunt with and what hunter does not want to actually use his guns for more then paper punchers? So for many this new 350 Legend is a useful tool whereas a 375, 415, 270, 30-30, 30-06, 308, 45-70, 5.56, 6.5 and so on, (just to help cement the point), are for us just toys for playing with and actually quite useless for anything else.

  13. On February 4, 2019 at 7:07 pm, Gryphon said:

    Mike- I will Agree with you that in Locations where Long-Range Calibers are Dangerous for Hunting that an ‘oddball’ Intermediate Round is Good. If You’re going Into the Woods after them, You probably won’t see a 50-Meter+ Target anyways (at least, not where I’m at) and even the Shotgun does the Job.

    Where I really have to Differ with You (and I thing Captain Smith would Agree) is you saying …” whereas a 375, 415, 270, 30-30, 30-06, 308, 45-70, 5.56, 6.5 and so on, (just to help cement the point), are for us just toys for playing with and actually quite useless for anything else.”

    They’re all good Tyrant-Hunting calibers, IMO.

  14. On February 5, 2019 at 12:00 am, BRVTVS said:

    @ Mike: The 45-70 is straight walled. Also, though the 30-30 is not straight-walled, its parent cartridge, the 38-55, is a straight-walled cartridge.

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You are currently reading ".350 Legend", entry #20515 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) Ammunition,AR-15s and was published January 31st, 2019 by Herschel Smith.

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