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Thread: Whelen woes

  1. #1
    Member The Kid's Avatar
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    Default Whelen woes

    I've finally gotten my Whelen up and going and it shoots great.......
    with most any bullet of 220gr or less. Now I know I could probably get by with 220gr bullets, but I think the point of this cartridge is to shoot heavier bullets than the 30-06 that I already had.

    I went to the range yesterday and tried several different loads with heavier bullets, none of which were very impressive.

    I tried 250 and 225gr Barnes Xs, 250 Speer spitzers, and some old old 250 RN bullets I scrounged up that are believed to be Bitterroot Bonded cores.

    The 225 Xs were first and they turned in around a 2in group, followed by the 250 Speer which shot about the same. The 250 Barnes was pretty bad with 5 shots going around 3.5 inches. Now, and I'm sure you can all see it coming, the supposed Bitterroots shot into an inch, with the first 3 touching, trouble being I only have 15 left and they haven't been prduced in about 25 years.

    I assume that the slow twist of 1in16 that myy barrel is rifled with has alot to do with the heavy bullet performance, and my groups aren't helped by the fixed 2.5 power scope that sits atop my rifle, but I think I can come up with something slightly better than this.

    So do any of you guys who have shot or loaded for a Whelen have any heavy bullet recipes for me to try? Specifically you guys that shoot a Remington factory rifle so chambered, as they have the same rate of twist.

    I know that any of the above listed combos would be minute of moose at normal hunting ranges, and I'm not searching for one hole groups, just something a little better.

    Also, does anyone know of another 250gr .358 round nose bullet other than the Hornady, I'm none too fond of Hornady Interlocks after last fall's experience.

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    Member shphtr's Avatar
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    225 NP's have worked well enough for me that I haven't tried anything else.....

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    Not sure how conservative your loads are but sometimes increasing the powder charge will help accuracy. First thing I suggest is to increase your powder charge 1 grain at a time till it is safely maxed out.

    Even though your rifle doesnt have a quick enough twist for the 250's sometimes you can get lucky if they are going pretty fast.
    Tennessee

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    Yes thew 35 Whelen is supposed to shoot a heavier bullet than the 30-06 but that doesn't mean that it has to. Just the bigger diameter at the same velocity makes it a good cjoice if you want something a little bigger than the 220 in a 30-06. Besides it will shoot the 225 at the same velocity that a 30-06 will shoot a 200 and it will shoot a 250 at th same velocity as the 30-06 will a 220.

    The Barnes can be a finicky bullet to use. I like the 225 Partition in my 35 calibers. A good all around bullet.

    What powder are you using? Have you tried Varget, RL15 or even AA2015?

  5. #5

    Default A 1 in 14 twist

    is pretty standard and will stabilize the heavier bullets better. I used a 35 Whelen exclusively for years and think it was made for the 250 gr. bullet which is a great performer. I think it is the optimal cartridge using a medium diameter bullet at a reasonable velocity. Never had it fail me. I like the Hornady 250 gr. Interlock.

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    Try to measure your Bitterroot bullets and compare that with the Barnes (a micrometer will be better than calipers for this). It may be that the Bitterroots are a slightly different diameter than the Barnes' and if so it could explain why they're more accurate in your rifle.

    Also when you mention those group sizes, what distance were you shooting at--200 yards?

    Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Kid View Post
    I assume that the slow twist of 1in16 that myy barrel is rifled with has alot to do with the heavy bullet performance, and my groups aren't helped by the fixed 2.5 power scope that sits atop my rifle, but I think I can come up with something slightly better than this.
    I do not think the issue is the 1:16 twist-my rifle is fine with 250s. So long as the bullet holes are round in the target I would look at other contributors.

    Hawk makes a 250 RT (round tip) as well as FP and SP in various jacket thickness. I've not used a lot of Hawk bullets, but pure copper and pure lead make for a pretty good combination IMO.

    http://www.hawkbullets.com/Pricelist.htm

    What's wrong with the 250 Interlocks?

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    Kid should have got a .36 Whelan

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wildalaska View Post
    Kid should have got a .36 Whelan
    +1

    Hey Kid,

    Didn't you know that the 9.3 x 62 is a far superior cartridge than the new fangeled 35 Whelen.

    You should have just got a Blaser.....

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    61 grains of h4350 and 250 Hornady spire . This combo shot a .464" 3-shot group in mine , 62 grains shoots 1.0" and poi moves up 1.5 inches.

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    I was shooting at 100yds for the poster who asked.
    I dont have tons of usable powders for this cartridge yet, kinda have to get one pound per paycheck you know. What I do have and have been trying are 3031 and Ball-C-2. I also have both 4198s, which Ive never seen a published load for, and some 4350 of either persuasion.
    Have any of you guys used any Hawk bullets? I've never even laid eyes on one but I have heard good things about them. As far as the Interlocks go, I had one shed a jacket on a deer last fall and it just kinda left a bad taste in my mouth even though I'm sure it was just a fluke deal. I guess I need to give them another try, but I can't seem to find any around town, all spitzers so far.

    Now down to brass tacks, Sean and Ken, If you guy did your homework instead of killing the forest with all that paper you shoot with your Blasers. You would know by now that the 9.3x 62 only works well in Southern Africa, while being carried by men of Dutch lineage. It is much too European for Alaska, the bears will only laugh, while waving the surrender flag and volunteering to skin themselves at the mere mention of my Whelen.

  12. #12

    Default Today's Results: Nosler 250 gr. Partitions w/RE15

    Hello Kid--I just happened to be at the range today working on handloads for what sounds like the very same rifle you are using--the short barrelled 1 in 16 twist 700 Classic. The barrel is free floated, and the action glass bedded. These were Remington factory cases, using CCI 200 primers, all 3-shot groups at 100 yards. I use a Bushnell Elite 4200 8-32X40 scope for load development target shooting, all off a bench rest set. Starting load was 49.0grains--2179 fps and poor group, with over 120 fps between high and low velocities. Next one up was 50.5 grains, with a better group (1.7"), but still very inconsistent velocities. Next one was 52.0 grains--average 2235 fps with 67 fps spread, shot .911" group. Last one was max in the Nosler bookat 53.0 grains. It shot a .476" group, average 2259 fps, with a 30 fps spread. Pressure looks definitely acceptable, and if I can keep it within the last two group sizes in the future, it looks like it will be my load. It might be a good try for you, too.
    Best Regards,
    Jim

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    Well the powder to use in the Whelen is either RL-15 or IMR 4064 maybe H4895 as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by midnightsunfun View Post
    Hello Kid--I just happened to be at the range today working on handloads for what sounds like the very same rifle you are using--the short barrelled 1 in 16 twist 700 Classic. The barrel is free floated, and the action glass bedded. These were Remington factory cases, using CCI 200 primers, all 3-shot groups at 100 yards. I use a Bushnell Elite 4200 8-32X40 scope for load development target shooting, all off a bench rest set. Starting load was 49.0grains--2179 fps and poor group, with over 120 fps between high and low velocities. Next one up was 50.5 grains, with a better group (1.7"), but still very inconsistent velocities. Next one was 52.0 grains--average 2235 fps with 67 fps spread, shot .911" group. Last one was max in the Nosler bookat 53.0 grains. It shot a .476" group, average 2259 fps, with a 30 fps spread. Pressure looks definitely acceptable, and if I can keep it within the last two group sizes in the future, it looks like it will be my load. It might be a good try for you, too.
    Best Regards,
    Jim

    What kind of powder were you using?

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    Quote Originally Posted by midnightsunfun View Post
    Hello Kid--I just happened to be at the range today working on handloads for what sounds like the very same rifle you are using--the short barrelled 1 in 16 twist 700 Classic. The barrel is free floated, and the action glass bedded. These were Remington factory cases, using CCI 200 primers, all 3-shot groups at 100 yards. I use a Bushnell Elite 4200 8-32X40 scope for load development target shooting, all off a bench rest set. Starting load was 49.0grains--2179 fps and poor group, with over 120 fps between high and low velocities. Next one up was 50.5 grains, with a better group (1.7"), but still very inconsistent velocities. Next one was 52.0 grains--average 2235 fps with 67 fps spread, shot .911" group. Last one was max in the Nosler bookat 53.0 grains. It shot a .476" group, average 2259 fps, with a 30 fps spread. Pressure looks definitely acceptable, and if I can keep it within the last two group sizes in the future, it looks like it will be my load. It might be a good try for you, too.
    Best Regards,
    Jim
    Sounds like you got it shooting pretty good, what bullet and powder are you using?

    My rifle is not one of the Remington classics, although they are nice and I would love to have one. I am shooting an older Ruger M77 that I rebarrelled, but the barrel I got such a killer deal on has the slow twist, no other options or you can bet I would have picked a 1 in12, since I like heavy for caliber bullets in anything under 416cal. I full length glassed the stock along with the usual lug lapping and reciever truing prior to barrelling, added a trigger job and bobbed the tube at 20in. I know it has the potential for good accuracy because it shoots lights out with bullets weighing 225 and under, I just haven't gotten the heavier ones to shoot well yet, aside from the one round nose design I tried.

    Here is a picture of it as it sits now, waiting to be beadblasted and blued after a little engraving.

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    Whoops just caught the header of your post.

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    What kind of barrel is it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Kid View Post
    I dont have tons of usable powders for this cartridge yet, kinda have to get one pound per paycheck you know. What I do have and have been trying are 3031 and Ball-C-2. I also have both 4198s, which Ive never seen a published load for, and some 4350 of either persuasion.
    I think that you may have located your problem with heavier bullets Kid, 3031 and 4198 are too fast for the Whelen (with bullets over 200 grains) IME and 4350 is a little slow with all bullet weights. BLC2 might be okay, but I've never tried it. Definitely try some IMR 4064 since you have a 20 inch barrel. I primarily use RL15 in my Whelen as I only load 225 and 250 grain bullets; IMR 4320 works nearly as well in my 24 inch barrel and powders in the mid range perform better IME. This is especially the case with heavier bullets. I am willing to bet that you will find much better accuracy with powder that is a touch slower when firing the 250 grain bullets.

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    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    Work up to 58 gr of RL 15 or Varget with 250's, they should be clocking 2500 fps and accuracy should be excellent. I know many folks shooting whelens and RL 15 is the mainstay powder. I used both RL 15 and varget in my whelen ackley and they both performed well.

    Other than the 250 gr X, I really don't think the 1-16 twist is an issue. My 35 whelen ackley did need to be pushed hard to group, though it had a 1-14 twist barrel. That accuracy problem was due to having a friend of a friend chamber the barrel vs. a real gunsmith. When it was re-chambered to a 350 rigby and re-crowned by a real smith, groups shrunk dramatically.

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    Thanks for the advice fellas, I thiink we might be getting somewhere, as soon as I can afford some more powder. I picked up some more bullets today to try. So please keep the suggestions and loads coming, I'm learning alot here.

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