My next rifle, 35 Whelen?

Cousin Bongo

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Ok, I'm going to keep the Tikka 30-06 (sorry guys) and I can use it with 180 grain bullets for elk-size game. I think a Pachmyr recoil pad will probably help my recoil management.

Considering just going for .375 H&H for larger game. I can use it for moose/bear and it will be nice practice for my eventual trip to Africa.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

You came to a solid conclusion as far as I’m concerned. When I lived in Alaska, I initially used a 338 Win Mag and it was okay, but not really all that much better than my trusty 30-06. Later, I got the hankering for a 35 Whelen and built one. Once I had the 35 Whelen, the 338 Win Mag was regulated to gathering dust. Not that the Whelen was superior - what one will do, so will the other - but because the rifle was lighter and more “friendly”, etc. (However, for serious excursions away from home base, I took my 30-06 because I knew I could always get ammo for it, something that can’t be guaranteed with the other two.) I used the 35 Whelen - which is, for all practical purposes, the ballistic twin of the great 9.3x62 - for several years with complete satisfaction easily taking game out to a bit past 300 yards which is the farthest I will shoot on unwounded game. Then one day I was talking to Don Johnson out at Bear Lake Lodge on the peninsula, and he recommended the 375 H&H, especially if I ever intended hunting Africa. Well, I built up a custom 375 H&H on a Mauser 98 action and I’ve never looked back. I still have and use my 30-06 and my 375 H&H and I wouldn’t be without them! (I also have a custom .458 Win Mag to supplement these two for certain things.)

CB
 

5shot

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I am not sure if I have mentioned it without going back through the whole thread but Woodleigh do a 275 and 310 grain bullet in 358. Stick the 310 in a Whelen and you have the same performance Taylor spoke of with the 350 Rigby.

The 310 is limited to 2200 fps...but should still be a crusher at that velocity.
 

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Greetings,

I am thinking about my next rifle. I currently have a .30-06 Tikka T3 and I just got a Kimber in 6.5 Creedmore. The Kimber is a sweet little rifle and I can't wait to take it out to the range. My thinking is to use the 6.5 for deer size game, but I want a rifle for larger creatures; elk, moose etc (and eventually kudu, eland). I am 'man enough' to admit I am recoil sensitive. I have gotten better dealing with the recoil from my '06 but I think I'm going to have a challenge with anything that kicks harder than that.

I have seen many folks extolling the virtues of the 35 Whelen and I like what I hear; 200+ grain bullets with good energy with manageable recoil. My concerns are that is doesn't have great ballistics past 200-300 yards and there seem to be few rifles offered in this caliber, it's either Remington 700 or a Ruger No 1. I'm concerned over Remington's spotting reputation for quality, the Ruger is a handsome rifle too.

Also, I think I might sell the .30-06. It's a bit too much recoil for a deer rifle but not powerful enough for the larger game. I think the '06 is in many ways the 'jack of all trades, master of none' rifle, if you're going to have just one hunting rifle the '06 is it, but if you're going to several (and why not have several), you really don't need one.

What do you think? Should I go for the Whelen? Remington or Ruger? Am I completely off my rocker on the 30-06?
Keep the. 30/06 and tame it down with recoil dampeners, heavier barrel etc, as guys here suggest. I've got both an FN 9.3x62 and a Ruger M77 (tang safety) in .30/06. Over the last 35yrs I've taken just about everything with the '06, including kudu and wildebeeste. Indeed my daughter rolled her water buffalo with it using Woodleigh 180gr PSPs. We're taking it to SA next july for PG, including gemsbok. All it comes down to is reloading it sensibly, with proper bullet selection for your intended need. I swear by Woodleigh 180gr PSP projectiles - they've proven deadly time and again!!
 

Milan

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Greetings,

I am thinking about my next rifle. I currently have a .30-06 Tikka T3 and I just got a Kimber in 6.5 Creedmore. The Kimber is a sweet little rifle and I can't wait to take it out to the range. My thinking is to use the 6.5 for deer size game, but I want a rifle for larger creatures; elk, moose etc (and eventually kudu, eland). I am 'man enough' to admit I am recoil sensitive. I have gotten better dealing with the recoil from my '06 but I think I'm going to have a challenge with anything that kicks harder than that.

I have seen many folks extolling the virtues of the 35 Whelen and I like what I hear; 200+ grain bullets with good energy with manageable recoil. My concerns are that is doesn't have great ballistics past 200-300 yards and there seem to be few rifles offered in this caliber, it's either Remington 700 or a Ruger No 1. I'm concerned over Remington's spotting reputation for quality, the Ruger is a handsome rifle too.

Also, I think I might sell the .30-06. It's a bit too much recoil for a deer rifle but not powerful enough for the larger game. I think the '06 is in many ways the 'jack of all trades, master of none' rifle, if you're going to have just one hunting rifle the '06 is it, but if you're going to several (and why not have several), you really don't need one.

What do you think? Should I go for the Whelen? Remington or Ruger? Am I completely off my rocker on the 30-06?
I would recommend a CZ550 FS in 9.3x62. Kicks no more than a 30-06 and is quieter than most rifles even with the 20" barrel. Really pleasant to shoot. It should do everything the Whelen will do and a little bit more perhaps.
 

TOBY458

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Greetings,

I am thinking about my next rifle. I currently have a .30-06 Tikka T3 and I just got a Kimber in 6.5 Creedmore. The Kimber is a sweet little rifle and I can't wait to take it out to the range. My thinking is to use the 6.5 for deer size game, but I want a rifle for larger creatures; elk, moose etc (and eventually kudu, eland). I am 'man enough' to admit I am recoil sensitive. I have gotten better dealing with the recoil from my '06 but I think I'm going to have a challenge with anything that kicks harder than that.

I have seen many folks extolling the virtues of the 35 Whelen and I like what I hear; 200+ grain bullets with good energy with manageable recoil. My concerns are that is doesn't have great ballistics past 200-300 yards and there seem to be few rifles offered in this caliber, it's either Remington 700 or a Ruger No 1. I'm concerned over Remington's spotting reputation for quality, the Ruger is a handsome rifle too.

Also, I think I might sell the .30-06. It's a bit too much recoil for a deer rifle but not powerful enough for the larger game. I think the '06 is in many ways the 'jack of all trades, master of none' rifle, if you're going to have just one hunting rifle the '06 is it, but if you're going to several (and why not have several), you really don't need one.

What do you think? Should I go for the Whelen? Remington or Ruger? Am I completely off my rocker on the 30-06?
Put a limbsaver recoil pad on the 30/06. I had a Tikka in 308 that was tamed nicely with the softer pad.
 

BC.Pat

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Something you might consider is world wide availability of ammunition if you intend to travel with your rifle. Im not sure about the whelen, but 9.3x62 is widely available in most parts. Even in up north.
But as others have said you can't really go wrong with either.
Have fun sorting it out. :)
 

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My 2 cents worth.
Fit a Limbsaver recoil pad. It helps absorbing the recoil. I have one fitted on all my Tikka rifles. Get your self a .22LR rifle. When at the range, shoot 1 round with the ‘06 and 5 to 10with the .22 LR, making sure you concentrate on the target, see the impact and follow through. You will soon start doing it with the ‘06 and not worry about recoil anymore.
The Tikka is a nice light rifle. You can carry it all day long.
 

Rob404

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I have a limbsaver on all of my rifles partly for recoil mostly for length of pull. I agree with Alchmist, I developed a bad case of the yips a few years back and had a constant flinch. I put away all my medium and heavy caliber rifles and shot my 22lr, 6mm Rem and my 223 varmint until I cured myself.
When I go to the range nowdays I always pack my 22 or my 6mm and use them to kind of warm up the move into the medium and heavy Caliber rifles.
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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Greetings,

I am thinking about my next rifle. I currently have a .30-06 Tikka T3 and I just got a Kimber in 6.5 Creedmore. The Kimber is a sweet little rifle and I can't wait to take it out to the range. My thinking is to use the 6.5 for deer size game, but I want a rifle for larger creatures; elk, moose etc (and eventually kudu, eland). I am 'man enough' to admit I am recoil sensitive. I have gotten better dealing with the recoil from my '06 but I think I'm going to have a challenge with anything that kicks harder than that.

I have seen many folks extolling the virtues of the 35 Whelen and I like what I hear; 200+ grain bullets with good energy with manageable recoil. My concerns are that is doesn't have great ballistics past 200-300 yards and there seem to be few rifles offered in this caliber, it's either Remington 700 or a Ruger No 1. I'm concerned over Remington's spotting reputation for quality, the Ruger is a handsome rifle too.

Also, I think I might sell the .30-06. It's a bit too much recoil for a deer rifle but not powerful enough for the larger game. I think the '06 is in many ways the 'jack of all trades, master of none' rifle, if you're going to have just one hunting rifle the '06 is it, but if you're going to several (and why not have several), you really don't need one.

What do you think? Should I go for the Whelen? Remington or Ruger? Am I completely off my rocker on the 30-06?
NickyMaz
If you find the recoil of the ought six to much the Whelen may well be as well.
I mainly 225 grain accubonds in mine at 2,800 fps and it killed everything I hunted in Namibia.
Not being mean mate but I would stick with the 06 it will do what you need.
I do love my Whelen and wouldn't be without it. The recoil is a bit more than the 06 but with a muzzle brake it's more like a 7mm 08.
Cheers mate
Bob Nelson
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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I think you came pretty close to hitting the nail on the head when you called the .30-06 a jack of all trades and a master of none....but it’s pretty damn close to a master of most things it’s capable of. Your issue with recoil may have to do with the fit and weight of your rifle. The T3’s always felt a little on the light side to me, so I passed and went with a Steyr instead.

That being said, if you want a .35 Whelen then go for it. I’m an unabashed Savage fan, but you can get into one pretty cheap and then get a barrel made in .35 Whelen and come in under the price of getting a Ruger No. 1. I’ve thought about doing the same thing myself, but I believe I’ve settled on the .338 Federal as my first medium bore.
JakeH
If you like the Savage check out my Savage Whelen with Zeiss 3-9X40.
20200201_135545.jpg

Accurate hard hitting and flat shooting 225grain accubonds 2,850fps chronoed
Cheers mate Bob
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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Buy a Savage, or another Tikka, in 30-06 and just get a new barrel for it in 35 Whelen.
Sgt Zim
I went the Savage. A lot cheaper than the Tikka and even with another barrel on the Savage he will still have enough for a reasonable scope and a box of ammo compared to the Nosler.
Cheers mate Bob
 

MS 9x56

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Greetings,

I am thinking about my next rifle. I currently have a .30-06 Tikka T3 and I just got a Kimber in 6.5 Creedmore. The Kimber is a sweet little rifle and I can't wait to take it out to the range. My thinking is to use the 6.5 for deer size game, but I want a rifle for larger creatures; elk, moose etc (and eventually kudu, eland). I am 'man enough' to admit I am recoil sensitive. I have gotten better dealing with the recoil from my '06 but I think I'm going to have a challenge with anything that kicks harder than that.

I have seen many folks extolling the virtues of the 35 Whelen and I like what I hear; 200+ grain bullets with good energy with manageable recoil. My concerns are that is doesn't have great ballistics past 200-300 yards and there seem to be few rifles offered in this caliber, it's either Remington 700 or a Ruger No 1. I'm concerned over Remington's spotting reputation for quality, the Ruger is a handsome rifle too.

Also, I think I might sell the .30-06. It's a bit too much recoil for a deer rifle but not powerful enough for the larger game. I think the '06 is in many ways the 'jack of all trades, master of none' rifle, if you're going to have just one hunting rifle the '06 is it, but if you're going to several (and why not have several), you really don't need one.

What do you think? Should I go for the Whelen? Remington or Ruger? Am I completely off my rocker on the 30-06?
Too many shooters put too much emphasis on ballistic tables. Ballistic tables do not take game. A shooter who knows his rifle putting a bullet in the right place is the only thing that matters. The only way to become that shooter is by taking the rifle and selected load to the range and practicing until you know where to hold at what range. No ballistic table will do that for you. As the old saying goes, practice makes perfect. Damn the ballistic tables full speed ahead.
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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I'm building a whelen on a large ring mauser action for my wife right now.. Its going to be a pretty heavy rifle.. Im guessing it will end up 10lbs or so with an optic.. We're giving it a 24" barrel with a #3 profile.. and its got a pretty heavy boyds laminate stock on it.. plus steel bases and rings, etc.. and a pachmayer decellerator.. Im thinking it will shoot pretty soft with 225gr bullets..

She has a .308 that is her go-to gun for most everything.. and a .243 for the smaller stuff.. but is interested in taking on eland when we do our next Africa trip, and is also thinking about some larger stuff on this side of the pond.. so she wanted something that could handle a little bit bigger bullet without having to quite step into the recoil of something like a .338 win mag..

the vast majority of the shots she has taken on game have been 100 yards or less.. with only a handful of animals taken at the 125-150 yard range.. so the ballistic downside of the whelen dropping like a rock starting at 200 really wasnt a concern..

Her next rifle after this one will probably be a 6.5 creed.. not because either of us plan on doing any 300+ yard hunting.. so much as I think she would like to do some 300-500 yard shooting... I think the creed will be about perfect for that..
@mdwest
Everyone keeps say the Whelen drops like a rock past 200 yards why I don't know. Maybe it's because gunwriters over the years have been telling people it's a grand BRUSH CARTRIDGE for bigger game with 250gr bullets. Maybe If'n they got out from behind their type writers and used it they would think differently.
A 225gn accubond started at 2,800fps and sighted 2.5 inches high at 100 yards only drops 21 inches at 400 yards and still has 2,000fpe of energy at that range.
A 250gr speer hotcore sighted the same drops 25 inches at the same distance.
Flater shooting than both the 308 and the 6.5 manbun.
Hitting a 6inch gong at 300 yards with the Whelen is doable and consistent with practice.
Bob
 

sestoppelman

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JakeH
If you like the Savage check out my Savage Whelen with Zeiss 3-9X40. View attachment 346769
Accurate hard hitting and flat shooting 225grain accubonds 2,850fps chronoed
Cheers mate Bob
I never noticed it before but what the heck kind of camo trees do you guys grow down there anyways?? Some sort of gum?
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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I never noticed it before but what the heck kind of camo trees do you guys grow down there anyways?? Some sort of gum?
@sestoppelman
The tree I use for my photos is a Sydney eucalypt. It sheds its bark every year and grows new bark. This way it provides ground cover to keep the moisture in during the hot summer and as it breaks down food for itself. They are great trees. When we went to Namibia the first two trees I noticed entering the property were Australian Eucalyptus.
Bob
 

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Cool looking tree.(y)
 

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I'm building a whelen on a large ring mauser action for my wife right now.. Its going to be a pretty heavy rifle.. Im guessing it will end up 10lbs or so with an optic.. We're giving it a 24" barrel with a #3 profile.. and its got a pretty heavy boyds laminate stock on it.. plus steel bases and rings, etc.. and a pachmayer decellerator.. Im thinking it will shoot pretty soft with 225gr bullets..

She has a .308 that is her go-to gun for most everything.. and a .243 for the smaller stuff.. but is interested in taking on eland when we do our next Africa trip, and is also thinking about some larger stuff on this side of the pond..

Funny seeing this old thread tonight and a post made almost 4 years ago… when we are flying out in less than 48 hours with the 35 Whelen I talked about building in this thread, to hunt the eland also mentioned in this thread
 

CoElkHunter

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@sestoppelman
The tree I use for my photos is a Sydney eucalypt. It sheds its bark every year and grows new bark. This way it provides ground cover to keep the moisture in during the hot summer and as it breaks down food for itself. They are great trees. When we went to Namibia the first two trees I noticed entering the property were Australian Eucalyptus.
Bob
Bob,
When I lived in Californicate, there are eucalyptus trees growing by the thousands along the railroad tracks. The story I got was that they were used for wood fuel in the old steam locomotives of the bygone era. They smell great too when using the wood in a fireplace or campfire. Just a little useless trivia.
CEH
 

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