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Old 11-15-2015, 04:32 PM
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Originally Posted by JonP View Post
A 35 Whelen AI is not a standard 35 Whelen. Aren't those numbers better than a std Whelen can produce?
I shoot a .35 Whelen AI and there is no real world velocity gain over what you can do with the standard unit, unless you just start to pour more powder into it until it does what you want. My 25" barrel likely does more for it than the improved case.

If you increase the powder charges for the standard Whelen, based on the increase in case capacity, you're looking at about 25-50fps...about the same thing an inch of barrel will do for you.

It's a very efficient cartridge, as it does what the '06 will do with 25% more bullet weight for basically the same powder charges. The thing I question now, many years after having it built is if it will do anything the '06 will not do, as the 30-06 with a 200gr bullet at 2600fps is no joke.

Last edited by kciH; 11-15-2015 at 04:38 PM.
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Old 11-15-2015, 04:57 PM
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A 200 gr .308 pill is serious medicine for sure, 2600 fps for the 200 gr Accubond still carries a ton of energy to the 400 yard line I believe.

With that said, a 250 gr .358 bullet at the same 2600 fps out of the Whelen or AI is vastly more dire out to 300 yrads at least, and the frontal diameter of a .358 bullet makes no apologies for the harder hit it makes when it comes to on-gme effect. I have shot animals with the .270 Win, 30-06, 300 Win Mag and the 35 Whelen or in my case, the 35 AI. The 358 caliber bullets win hands down for on-game effect when it comes to the larger elk class of animals. I would entertain that deer and the like probably wouldn't know the difference, but I see a difference on elk in favor of the .358 diameter.
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Old 11-15-2015, 06:17 PM
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Maybe your buddy just doesn't like to sit behind a single shot 35 Whelen spitting full power 250gr loads and he's made up this long range stuff so he doesn't have to admit it. The .35 Whelen, especially in a lighter rifle, is more than most can handle from a bench rest. It is, for all intents and purposes,very close to a 338 WM.

The 180gr TTSX would have a couple inches less drop at 300 yards than your 250gr Speer, it's pretty much academic. It would have about 25-30% less recoil in identical rifles, if that is of concern.

I will say that I was looking online at barrels for the TC Encore a few days ago and was rather puzzled by the wide distribution of 35 Whelen barrels, now all is explained!

Last edited by kciH; 11-15-2015 at 06:33 PM.
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Old 11-15-2015, 06:58 PM
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The 250's have a good bit more recoil in any weight rifle when loaded to top velocities vs the 180/200's loaded to top velocity. Add in a single shot (light weight) and I bet it is a heavy recoiling affair from the bench.
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Old 11-15-2015, 07:31 PM
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Originally Posted by hbonser View Post

The 250's have a good bit more recoil in any weight rifle when loaded to top velocities vs the 180/200's loaded to top velocity. Add in a single shot (light weight) and I bet it is a heavy recoiling affair from the bench.
I bet it would be about all the fun you'd want to have in a Handi-Rifle. The Encore with a synthetic stock is not exactly a heavyweight either.
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Old 01-28-2016, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Saskshooter View Post
I believe that is true. There is very little to be gained by using a large caliber with light bullets. The lighter you get with the bullets of any caliber, the closer you get to shooting a washer of that caliber. Ballistic coefficient, sectional density, and momentum are all very important for terminal performance on game, and the heavier the bullet in any given caliber, the stronger they all become.

Muzzle velocity is not nearly as important as people like to think.
Late to the party, but after using the .35 Whelen for over 40 years, I wholeheartedly agree with Jakesnake66 and Saskshooter that the 250 grainer is the bullet for the job for all of the reasons cited. I use a 35 Whelen Ackley Improved in an Encore Pro Hunter pistol for the LA primitive weapons season. The 250 Speer Hot-Cor is an excellent deer bullet. I like the Nosler 250 gr. Partition and the 250 gr Speer Grand Slam (now discontinued) for heavier beasts such as black bear, elk and really big hogs.
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Old 02-08-2017, 03:08 PM
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When I built my first Whelen on a Mauser action I shot everything with it. A coyote at 300 yards, a mule deer at 250, a medium sized black bear at 100, several blacktails, and many feral hogs at close range. I used the 250 grain Speer almost exclusively with an occasional 250 gr Hornady RN on a hog. Two things, first effective with large exit, second it easily shot flat enough for shots out to 300 yards. My load pushed the 250's to 2500 fps. For some reason I drifted to other cartridges but the Whelen is in my safe just waiting for another Black bear hunt.
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Old 02-16-2017, 04:10 PM
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225 grain sierra with imr 4064 works great. Has similar path to 30-06 with 180 grain bullet. No need for premium bullet, cup and core work great on whitetails, and russian boar.
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Old 02-16-2017, 07:01 PM
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I have good accuracy with the 225 Sierra's. And velocity is pretty good as well. No flies on them! Because they are a fairly short bullet I even ran some H4350 under them. Got average velocity but upped recoil a good bit because of heavier powder charge. Just worked that load up early on as I was feeling out my AI.

I think bullet weight is important however bullet construction is of as much importance these days because we don't have to rely on sheer weight to perform. I am a huge proponent of the Barnes 200 TTSX as many of you have seen and read over the past number of years.

However if I was generally shooting lighter and smaller game and elk were not on the menu, I would be happy with most any traditional cup and core.
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