An African Dilemma......Hmmm....What to Use?

Shootist43

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Is the 8 x 68 and the 8 x 68S the same cartridge? I just looked up loads for the 8 x 68S and it looks to me like a 35 Whelen with 225 Gr Bullets at 2800fps has it beat. Just slightly mind you, but anything you can take with a 6 x 68S you can take with the 35 Whelen. So it too, could be a one rifle battery.
 

IvW

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Is the 8 x 68 and the 8 x 68S the same cartridge? I just looked up loads for the 8 x 68S and it looks to me like a 35 Whelen with 225 Gr Bullets at 2800fps has it beat. Just slightly mind you, but anything you can take with a 6 x 68S you can take with the 35 Whelen. So it too, could be a one rifle battery.

Same thing.

The 8 x 68S will beat the 35 Whelen in the field as it shoots a slightly smaller diameter bullet with a higher SD and BC in the same weight at higher velocity. The 8 x 68S does its best work with heavier bullets at long range, a superb African cartridge for the job on the toughest African plains game.

Typical factory specs:
35 Whelen

225 gr (15 g) SBT 2,613 ft/s (796 m/s) 3,412 ft·lbf (4,626 J)

8 x 68S

14.5 g (224 gr) RWS KS 870 m/s (2,900 ft/s) 5,488 J (4,048 ft·lbf)

Both are excellent cartridges and good choices as one rifle battery, for larger game out to longer range, and as you mention they can take the same animals, but I would personally give the 8 x 68S the nod ahead of the 35 Whelen.
 

Shootist43

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We might be looking at different ballistic tables. Mine showed 225 gr bullets out of the Whelen at 2800 fps and 220 gr bullets out of the 8x68S at 2700fps. Either way the nod goes, the difference is very slight. I wouldn't sell either one to buy the other. If I had both as the case is here, it would be a matter of which gun I shot the best or enjoyed shooting the most.
 

AlphaHunter

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For plains game, anything from .270 to .30 due to the distance you shoot. I shot a springbok in the Freestate at 946mts (heart shot) with a .308 using 150gr FMJ to prevent meat damage. On your list, the most appropriate for game up to kudu is the 7x57. For bigger game, from Eland to buffalo, I would recommend 375 H&H. 375 is very manageable and fast for a follow up shot on dangerous game. Very popular in South Africa.
 

8x68

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We might be looking at different ballistic tables. Mine showed 225 gr bullets out of the Whelen at 2800 fps and 220 gr bullets out of the 8x68S at 2700fps. Either way the nod goes, the difference is very slight. I wouldn't sell either one to buy the other. If I had both as the case is here, it would be a matter of which gun I shot the best or enjoyed shooting the most.
2800fps for the 225gr bullet seems a tad high. Sierra 7th edition lists max velocity out of a 26" bbl is 2700fps. Which table/manual are you using?
8x68 velocity with 200gr Woodleigh's is as listed. What's impressive is the Woodleigh 250gr RNSP in the 8x68 is going 2600fps+ at the muzzle. That's some serious thump for an non magnum 8mm bullet I would say.
I think at distance the 8x68 would have the edge.
 

8x68

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Playing with ideas. I'm sure everything has been "done to death" but I had thought about taking the 404 Jeffery case and necking it down to .323. First off is it possible, and secondly would be ending up with basically a 8x68?
 

8x68

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I think the 35 Whelen and 8x68S are both great cartridge choices. They are just as accurate as each other. I would lean towards the 8x68 as the more classy choice. It also allows the ability to reach out there a little further and touch someone. Kinda like showing up at the range and people ask "whatcha got today?" You reply a 35 Whelen (most nod their heads) and then you say 8x68. Most will look at you as if you just blew a dog whistle (head canted to one side, brow furrowed, with a quizzical look). Then you have to 'splain them Lucy'
 

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I believe I have a solution to your enviable problem. First rather than necking down the 404 Jeff you simply sell it to me. Second use the 375 HH if it is in fact what you shoot the best. Most important laugh and enjoy
 

8x68

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I believe I have a solution to your enviable problem. First rather than necking down the 404 Jeff you simply sell it to me. Second use the 375 HH if it is in fact what you shoot the best. Most important laugh and enjoy
Uh..........NO! It be mine, mine, mine I tell ya. LOL
My 404 wont be going anywhere......well hopefully to Africa...er....with me.
I was just curious as to whether or not it's been done and what kind of ballistics one could get from it. 404-8 sounds interesting.
 

jacques smith

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Oh come on u can lose one little rifle. If u miss it too much I'll loan it back to u for Africa or I'll loan u my sako375 HH or my Dakota arms 400 HH. What ever u decide GO to Africa and use something
 

Shootist43

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2800fps for the 225gr bullet seems a tad high. Sierra 7th edition lists max velocity out of a 26" bbl is 2700fps. Which table/manual are you using?
8x68 velocity with 200gr Woodleigh's is as listed. What's impressive is the Woodleigh 250gr RNSP in the 8x68 is going 2600fps+ at the muzzle. That's some serious thump for an non magnum 8mm bullet I would say.
I think at distance the 8x68 would have the edge.

I used Nosler Data. They show two loads at 2800 fps and above. the first is 60.5 Gr. of Varget for 2800, and 59 Gr of 4064 for 2805 fps. I use the latter & my Whelen loves it.
 

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IMG_20170312_140523.jpg
All those guns and no 30-06?

I'm also a big CZ fan, love the no frills reliability they can offer.

Those are mine in the pic, from left: zkk600 in 30-06, cz550 in 416 Rigby and a cz 527 in 22 hornet.
 
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One of these days before I get to the point of being non functional I would like to hunt Africa. Here is my dilemma....I have too many choices of rifle. I want to hug them all and bring them all but that would be most silly and expensive. Hunt choice would be a plains game safari, and then a DG hunt.
So what would you bring?
From top to bottom we have the following buffet of choices.
#1 BRNO 600 in 7x57
#2 BRNO 602 in 8x68S
#3 CZ 550 FS in 9.3x62
#4 BRNO 602 in 375 H&H (yes recoil pad will be replaced)
#5 CZ 550 in 416 Rigby
#6 Custom M70 in 404 Jeffery
#7 CZ 550 in 450 Rigby
#8 BRNO 602 in 458 Lott (again recoil pad will be replaced)
Not built yet but almost...Custom CZ 550 in 358 Norma Mag.
View attachment 157020
@8x68
Being a 35 nut I we ould use the 358 Norma.
In reality tho I would hat to be in your shoes as you have a lot of great rifles and calibers to choose from
Hmmm a difficult choice
Bob
 
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no 1 and no 3, and then either no 5 or no 6. at least you get to play with 3 of them then ;) and well as you taking 3 you might as well take 4 so go get a 500 jeff :D
@spike.t
You aren't making it any easier on the poor man.
Apart from the 358 norma my choice would be No1 and either 6 or 7. I do like the old classics
Bob
 
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#3 and #5 and buy a .243W for most of the small plains game. There is an awful lot you can hunt with a .243W in Africa.
@Code4
To me that last cartridge you mentioned,yes that horrible little 243 has not place in that classic selection or any other place hunting is done. To me there is nothing the 243 is useful for apart from making tomato stakes.
Bob
 
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Same thing.

The 8 x 68S will beat the 35 Whelen in the field as it shoots a slightly smaller diameter bullet with a higher SD and BC in the same weight at higher velocity. The 8 x 68S does its best work with heavier bullets at long range, a superb African cartridge for the job on the toughest African plains game.

Typical factory specs:
35 Whelen

225 gr (15 g) SBT 2,613 ft/s (796 m/s) 3,412 ft·lbf (4,626 J)

8 x 68S

14.5 g (224 gr) RWS KS 870 m/s (2,900 ft/s) 5,488 J (4,048 ft·lbf)

Both are excellent cartridges and good choices as one rifle battery, for larger game out to longer range, and as you mention they can take the same animals, but I would personally give the 8 x 68S the nod ahead of the 35 Whelen.
@IvW
35Whelen
225gn accubond at 2850fps 4,000+ fpe
225 gn Woodleigh at 2,900fps 4,300fpe
250 gn 2,700fps 4,000+fpe
Bob
 

sestoppelman

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Lets not forget that little thing called powder room, size matters.

8x68s - 86.5 grs of water

.35 Whelen - 72.6 grs of water

.338 WIn - 85.6 grs of water

An extra 14 or so grains of powder is not inconsequential.

And while Bobs long barreled and throated personal custom rifle may be able to achieve such speeds, I would wager dang few factory rifles will and certainly 95 percent of Whelen owners wont ever tread in those waters.
 
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Lets not forget that little thing called powder room, size matters.

8x68s - 86.5 grs of water

.35 Whelen - 72.6 grs of water

.338 WIn - 85.6 grs of water

An extra 14 or so grains of powder is not inconsequential.

And while Bobs long barreled and throated personal custom rifle may be able to achieve such speeds, I would wager dang few factory rifles will and certainly 95 percent of Whelen owners wont ever tread in those waters.
@sestoppelman
As you know my loads are not hotrodded they are taken from actual certified load data.
The Whelen already has a long throat standard. So the loads I use are achievable in any factory rifle using proper safe loading practices.
As for my long barrel it is only 25 inches as opposed to the average 24 inch.
All I have ever done is enlightened people that the Whelen is capable of far better performance.
There are a few on this forum that were getting better performance than the standard Whelen using 4064 and Re15 before I came along. There are even more now that have realised the benefits of loading the Whelen to its potential.
I have had PMs from people on this forum thank me for the information I have provided and have used the loads in STANDARD RIFLES, rugers and Remington and achieved the same results to the point their Whelen using these loads have become their go to rifle now instead of it languishing in the safe in favour of supposed better calibers. They have come to realise the Whelen is now better than it has ever been with more than enough power and a flat enough trajectory to bring it out from its old status as a good woods cartridge. It is now a cartridge capable of longer range and power enough to dispatch game at 400 yards plus if they do their part. It is also capable of putting a big hurt on game close in with 275 and 310 grainers.
Is it the perfect rifle.
NO it isn't, but it's a lot better and more versatile than at any other stage in its life.
There are those that like it as much as me and others that are coming to realise what it is capable of.
There are others that like it as much as I do the 243, but to each there own and I have no problems with that.
There are also a lot of cartridges out there that are loaded to their potential and reloading can't match or improve on the factory loads
To be honest I'm getting a bit bored with case capacity and all the other stuff. Loaded to the same pressures there ain't much difference in them.
The old ought six originally loaded with a 150 grain at 2,700fps was a long way behind the 300 win mag. Now we push the same 150gn in the 06 to over 3,000fps narrowing the 300 06 velocity gap.
All I have done is using existing information for the Whelen to bring it up to where it belongs.
Bob
 

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