The 300 Ham’r in Canada

Copyright 2023 – Stephen Redgwell

The 300 Ham’r has only been around for a few years in the US, but quickly moved from the design stage to field use. Its creator, Bill Wilson, has done a lot of testing on hogs on his Texas ranch. He created it for the AR, but that’s not going to make it popular in Canada until they change the hunting regulations governing the use of ARs. For the time being, Canadians will only be able to use bolt action rifles or single shots with this cartridge. We have to hope that Ruger, Savage or Howa will add a 300 Ham’r to their line ups. In the meantime, rebarreling will be the way to go.

If you are not familiar with the 300 Ham’r, it uses a 308 bullet, loaded in a modified 223 Remington case. That makes it suitable for hogs, whitetails, coyotes, wolves and more. What I like about it is the Ham’r is based on a modified 223 case. The brass is plentiful and easily converted to 300 Ham’r. Or you can order the brass from Starline like I did. It’s a modern, 300 yard whitetail cartridge that is powder stingy and doesn’t have much recoil.

I expect that 125 to 135 grain bullets will be its sweet spot, but you can use 100 to 150 grain pointed bullets and see what works best in your rifle. I’m even going to try some 150 gr cast lead bullets!

There’s more. It uses 6 or 7 grains less powder than a 30-30 for the same velocity…and uses pointed bullets. Those spitzers can reach out farther than flat nosed, 30-30 bullets. The trajectory will be flatter and the bullet will retain more energy. The Ham’r is often compared to the 30-30, so I ran some computer simulations last fall. There was plenty of information about the Ham’r on the Web, but you have to consider the sources. For that reason, I stuck with the designer, Bill Wilson, and got almost all of my information from his site – – as well as his youtube videos.

30-30 – MV – 2235 fps

150 gr. Speer FN – 2011

Velocity and energy numbers are 100, 200 and 300 yards

Velocity – 1926 – 1650 – 1407
Energy – 1237 – 907 – 659

300 Ham’r – MV – 2210 fps

150 gr. Speer SP – 2023

Velocity and energy numbers are 100, 200 and 300 yards

Velocity – 1988 – 1794 – 1617
Energy – 1315 – 1071 – 869

Last November, I ordered a 24 inch barrel from Match Grade Machine in Utah for my single shot Contender. It will look exactly like the one below. It has not arrived, but I am hopeful it will be here by the end of August at the latest. It will join my 6×45 and 223 Rem/223 Wylde rigs, all of which use easy to find 223 Remington cases.

The cartridge has been approved by SAAMI which means that we will see more reloading equipment and ammunition for it as time goes on (I hope). Unfortunately, living in Canada often means a considerable wait for things like brass and off the shelf rifles. For that reason, having a gunsmith install a Ham’r barrel on a pre-existing 223 Rem rifle is the way to go. Barrels can be imported from the US from MGM (Contender and Encore), Shaw, and Preferred Barrel Blanks. These last two will be for your bolt action rifle. You can try building one here from a selection of actions.

Pre-fit barrels by action – Preferred Barrel Blanks

Canadians still get the chance to get in on the ground floor. I bought some Lee dies and have a collet die coming from Higginson Powders. RCBS also makes dies for the Ham’r.

I bought Starline cases from X-Reload. AA 1680 and CFE BLK have already been tested and other powders like IMR 4227 and N110 may work, depending on the bullet weight. Since most of the testing has been done with ARs, I hope that a few other powders not suitable for that action will work in my Contender.

Since the 300 Ham’r is based on the 223, you’ll need small rifle primers. They are easier to find.

Here are some links about the 300 Ham’r.

American Rifleman 300 Ham’r Review

Wilson Combat looks at the 300 Ham’r