.358 Win. Or .35 Whelen?

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mashburn posted this 20 February 2021

I bought a .358 1-16 twist barrel blank from Ed a couple of years ago. I have three actions to put it on and have not completely made my mind up as of now but getting close. My question to you readers is: Should It be chambered in .358 Winchester or .35 Whelen? I will be shooting both cast and jacketed bullets.Why.

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 21 February 2021

... how about the 35 Whelen ... except you then run in a 25-06 Imp. reamer to turn it into a 35 Whelen Imp ...  ... 

...or do you run in the 25 imp first ? ... 

anyway, you wind up with a really spiffy cartridge ... 

*****************

you can load the Whelen down, but you can't load the 358 up ...  heh ...

ken

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RicinYakima posted this 25 February 2021

Ken, How much power do you  need? I have a .358 Norma on a very nice Springfield action from Bob Apex and stocked by  Monty Kennedy. For it to shoot well with cast bullets, it kicks too much. 35 Whelen is the sweet spot with cast bullets, little recoil and enough power to kill elk at 100 yards. Ric

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RicinYakima posted this 20 February 2021

I prefer the Whelen, but only for tradition's sake. Mine is made on a salvaged Springfield Sporter barrel and action. The two 358 Winchesters I have own were light weight hunting rifles and kicked badly with 250 grain Speer bullets I was using for elk. Just not enough weight and poor stock designs for heavy bullets. Shooting cast, you can just load to the level you like.

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Spindrift posted this 20 February 2021

I only have a .35 Whelen, never owned a .358 win. I would like to get one, one day. 

Both cartridges have their merits, and the best choice would depend on your goals. 

 

- If you’re building on a standard action anyway, you might as well choose the Whelen. 

- If you have access to a short action, and want a short/light rifle, .358 win is the logical choice

- If you plan to use >250grs bullets, the Whelen is the better choice

 

Good luck with your project!

 

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oscarflytyer posted this 21 February 2021

my vote is 358 Win because

1)  I have a 358 BLR - and LOVE it!  2 deer so far and both DRT

2)  358 is short action - really like that

3)  w/o looking, expectation is that the 358 will use less powder

4)  358 because I LOVE Lever Guns!  Not aware of a Whelen in a lever gun (OR pump) (but guess you could rebore a Win 1895 30-06 to a Whelen), but the BLR is a lever, and both Win 100 and Savage 99 came in 358 Win, and either in 308 could be rebored to 358.  Same on rebore of a 760 pump to 358 (don't THINK they came in 358...)

5)  35 Whelen is even more overkill (yeah, I know, no such thing as too dead!) than the 358 for my dinky Southern whitetail.

 

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Lee Guthrie posted this 24 February 2021

Never shot a .358 Win, but I have a Shilen custom built rifle on Rem 700 action (my only custom built) chambered in Ackley Improved .35 Whelen with 25" light contour varmit barrel, 1 in 14 RH twist.  I also load for two nephews shooting unaltered Rem 700 BDLs.

Someone above inquired about recoil.  hahahahaha   No, it doesn't kick, and come on in the water is fine .........  Well, you can make it memorable with a case full of medium burning rifle powder and a 225 grain Nosler partition.  I almost ran out of friends to shoot the "free ammo" out of it when fire forming a bunch of brass.  No one wanted to fire more than a handful of rounds at a time.

With cast bullets you can make it pleasant to shoot or "memorable".  It is very accurate, jacketed or cast.  I cast the bullets below for the three rifles:  accuracy ranges from fine to great.  I have cast the two NOE designs, but due to taking my loading room apart for moving I have not loaded them.  I expect "Thumper" to be impressive on bambi.  The NEI loaded to 1850 fps is very accurate, not bad on recoil, and after being hit with it deer are DRT.  I have the smaller 200+ grain moulds, but have never tried them:  you can shoot a 200 grain bullet from a .30 cal rifle, so ....

Lyman  3589       280gr  HP  GC

Lyman 358009    280gr RN  GC 

Lyman  358318   250gr  RN  GC  

NEI      358-290  290gr  FN  GC

NOE    360-280   280gr GC Spitzer

NOE    360-310   310gr FP GC “Thumper”

 

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GBertolet posted this 25 February 2021

I have the Whelen Imp on a P17 action. Very versitile, from cast plinkers to grizzley bear loads. If you have a long action go with the 35 Whelen. Short action go with the .358. A very easy decision.

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GBertolet posted this 26 February 2021

I couldn't get the size below the 2mb max. I used another camera. I have two muzzle brakes for this rifle. I couldn't get the shorter one to group with the Sierra 225 BT, so the builder sent me a larger brake, which worked much better. Ironicly I switched to the Speer 250 grain Hotcore anyway for my hunt. The brakes load up with cast bullets, which I removed for cast bullet use. The rubber resonator on the barrel, does make a difference in accuracy. Small but definite.

I let the builder go, to add what he thought best. A Douglass 1-12 barrel, Timney trigger, cock on opening bolt, extra power FP spring, Pacific Research fiberglass stock.( I was told that this stock was a prototype, one of a kind, at least back in 2001 it was). The action was blueprinted, receiver was contoured to take Win 70 scope bases,(it was a Winchester Enfield),  metal parts were finished in a teflon bake on finish. Apparently the chamber was cut to minimum dimensions, as no matter how hot of loads I used, and I had some screamers, the fired cases glided effortlessly through my Redding sizer die. Total cost was a little over $1000, with me supplying the action, back in 2001.

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99 Strajght posted this 20 February 2021

I have rifles in both calibers and for cast, both shoot about the same. I have killed deer with both. For jacketed the Whelen will have a little more velocity but the deer will not know the difference.

Glenn

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OU812 posted this 20 February 2021

I once owned a Browning blr chambered in 358 winchester, but I always wanted the Remington 760 pump chambered in 35 whelen. Never really liked the Browning's old design lever action.

Both calibers are about the same when shooting lower velocity cast. Plenty of 308 brass available to expand.

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Bud Hyett posted this 20 February 2021

As a cast bullet gun, I'd build a .358 Winchester. I've long thought a Savage 99 in this caliber would be a great brush gun. Either the RCBS 35-200-FN or the SAECO #352 mold will be fine. 

Thirty-five years ago, the .358 Winchester was shot at the matches at Windhill, The shooter did well. He shot the RCBS 35-200-FN bullet. 

 

Farm boy from Illinois, living in the magical Pacific Northwest

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 20 February 2021

My vote is for the Whelen and ditto Ric's comments. 

David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
-Services: Wars Fought, Uprisings Quelled, Bars Emptied, Revolutions Started, Tigers Tamed, Assassinations Plotted, Women Seduced, Governments Run, Gun Appraisals, Lost Treasure Found.
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admiral posted this 20 February 2021

What are you building it on?

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Elmer posted this 22 February 2021

The Whelen I shot years ago, M700 with 250 gr Rem ammo had a nice push, pleasant boom. Quite enjoyable to shoot offhand.

Steve Timm had nice things to say about the .358 Win in the Nosler Reloading Manual No. 3, p. 268.

If I were going after elk, I'd opt for the Whelen vs .358 Win. Bob Hagel and others would say there are lots better choices, esp with elk acting like WTD due to hunting pressure, accordingto BH. Locals who had lots of time, premium projectiles and broadside shots at reasonable ranges would probably do alright with the Win. It's all about the shot placement as many fine hunters have said.

JSM

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 25 February 2021

i say again :

" you can load the 35 whelen down

but you can't load the 358 winchester up "

*************

for the past few years i have left my powder measure stuck on 7 grains of Unique ... works for 30-30, 6.5 swede, 300 Savage, 308 Win., 30-06 ...  might be just fine in a 35 whelen also ...

and i too have a spare 357 barrel ... 26 inch varmint wt ... it would look good in a 35 whelen ... anybody wanna split a good cast chamber reamer ?? ...

ken

 

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rmrix posted this 26 February 2021

I have a Remington 700 35 Whelen since 1990 new and shot it a bunch. Is there a problem people are having the shoulder moving forward upon firing or with the headspace on these? (not trying to be a contrary)  I have not had that issue. As a cast bullet hunting rifle, it has been outstanding for me with the LBT 275gr SP he made for mine. I only hunted elk with it. As it turned out, I have not had a shot longer than 200yds. All one shot kills.

That is everything I have on the Whelen except,  ... if you only had one rifle....   that 35 Whelen in a bolt rifle and or the 45-70 in a singleshot rifle can do it all with cast bullets.

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mashburn posted this 21 February 2021

Ken,

You rascal, you know how much I like wildcats and you're trying to entice me to do something that I love to do. I've always wanted to have a .375 Whelen and If  I had any .375 barrels left, I would have to build one. That set of reamers, of yours that I have here (25-06 Mashburn)  would really make a thumper, wouldn't it? I think that I will try and keep my sanity and go with either a .358 Win. or a .35 Whelen.

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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mashburn posted this 21 February 2021

Admiral,

You asked, what I plan on building the .35 on. Here are the choices that I have.. An O3A3 Springfield action that is already sporterized- new turned down custom bolt handle-drilled and tapped for scope-steel floor plate-after market trigger and freshly blued. Next is a custom single shot that I built about 20 years ago. I built this action myself. It is now a complete rifle chambered in .219 Donaldson Wasp  and stocked with presentation grade Black Walnut crotch figure. The action is color case hardened, by me, in my shop also. It is a beautiful rifle but hasn't been fired in about 18 years. I would like to turn it into a rifle that I would use and hunt with. But, if I do, you can guarantee that that pretty Niedner (misspelled I'm sure)  checkered steel butt plate will have to be replaced. The butt plate and grip cap are also color cased.

I have a rifle, that I built on a O3 Springfield, it is re-barreled to 7X57 and  is a little 18" Manlicher (again misspelled ) The rifle is not completely finished but I have had it to the range several times.

The last is a 1955 production year model 88 Winchester. It is a .308. I hate to think about taking it apart but I have other Model 88's. It would be very uncomfortable to shoot with its dropped heel and higher comb. This one will probably survive. I also have a early Remington 700 ADl that I would consider  sacrificing.

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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mashburn posted this 21 February 2021

I've listened to all of the pros and cons given by you people and all of you agree with the things that I also think. Like David and Ric said, the Nostalgia is the best thing that draws me to the Whelen. I have plenty of brass for either and have ..358 dies but not .35 Whelen which is no big problem. I have plenty of .358 bullet molds and a pretty good stash of jacketed .358 bullets, so there it goes, Which one. Somebody convince me. One last question: I have always heard that the .35 Whelen is a kicker. I've shot a lot of .358's but not a Whelen. I'm not recoil conscious but while working up loads from a bench you can get a little punchy after a while. If you shoot my .375 Cogburn, for a while, you would have to become immune to recoil or quit shooting it and get rid of it.

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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mashburn posted this 21 February 2021

Hello Spindrift,

I have seen some of the cast groups that you have fired with your custom quick change barre .35 Whelenl Remington. I would say very impressive. I also wish to thank you for the cast and powder coating information that you have shared with me .I never seat gas checks any other way than the demonstration that you posted on the forum.

Thanks,

Mashburn

David a. Cogburn

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