Home Main Category General Firearms

338-06 or 35 Whelen? What should I make it?

snake284-1snake284-1 Senior MemberPosts: 2,500 Senior Member
It's looking more and more like my next project will be rebarreling my Ruger 77. I have talked about a 35 Whelen for over 2 years now and was pretty much set on that. However, of late I have been hearing a lot about the 338-06. They use similar weight bullets, but the 338 gives better velocities down range because of higher BC for the same weight. What are some opinions here on this? I'm still leaning toward the Whelen, but I'm pretty iffy at this stage. Both are a reloading proposition, which is no step for me because I have dies for every centerfire rifle I own (except my Mosin) and I have a couple rifles already in cartridges that are reloading propositions and I shoot very little factory ammo.

So should I proceed with the Whelen, or should I go with the 338 version?
I'm Just a Radical Right Wing Nutt Job, Trying to Help Save My Country!
«1

Replies

  • WeatherbyWeatherby Senior Member Posts: 4,953 Senior Member
    What will be the purpose of the rifle ?

    I think I'd go with the Whelen as you have plenty of long range thumpers already.

    The Whelen could be a good pig thumper for you
  • Ernie BishopErnie Bishop Senior Member Posts: 8,496 Senior Member
    If distance is not the main issue, then the 338-06 would not have the advantage.
    Get what you want the most:agree:
    Also, you could just neck down the Whelen and have an improved 338-06.
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 27,461 Senior Member
    I solved that problem by getting both!
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • snake284-1snake284-1 Senior Member Posts: 2,500 Senior Member
    Well, that's more up MY ally and how I would normally solve this. However, if I do that, I'm gonna have to get another gun safe, LOL!!! I've about run out of room.
    I'm Just a Radical Right Wing Nutt Job, Trying to Help Save My Country!
  • snake284-1snake284-1 Senior Member Posts: 2,500 Senior Member
    Yeah Weatherby and Ernie, I hear ya. Like I said, I was still leaning toward the Whelen. I just got a knee jerk for a minute. 338-06 got me thinking and that's when I get in trouble,

    :rotflmao::rotflmao::rotflmao:
    I'm Just a Radical Right Wing Nutt Job, Trying to Help Save My Country!
  • WeatherbyWeatherby Senior Member Posts: 4,953 Senior Member
    no when you think 270 you get in trouble
  • Ernie BishopErnie Bishop Senior Member Posts: 8,496 Senior Member
    I don't think you can go wrong with the 338-06 or the AI version or the 35 Whelen=All good choices
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 27,461 Senior Member
    For the hunting that you do, Snake.........the Whelen would be perfect. It will reach as far as YOU are likely to shoot and thump a piggy pretty handily.

    The last pig I shot with my Whelen weighed 300 pounds and at 80 yards.........slumped to the ground at the shot. I load 200, 225, and 250gr bullets. That's a wonderful array of .35cal options. It will do what YOU need. You aren't shooting past 300 yards so the added BC of the .338cal bullet is wasted on your purposes.
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 12,575 Senior Member
    I vote for the 35 Whelen. For old time's sake.
    Concealed carry is for protection, open carry is for attention.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    I've got a brand new .338-06 reamer, with only one chamber cut on it, and it was a short-chambered A&B barrel which required maybe a .030" deepening of the existing chamber. It's available for loan if your gun builder doesn't have one on hand.
    Jerry
  • Ernie BishopErnie Bishop Senior Member Posts: 8,496 Senior Member
    Hee! Hee!
    That is what I like to see-A true enabler:cool2:
    And he is even rooting for my favorite (what I call large bore) caliber:up:
    Ernie

    "The Un-Tactical"
  • snake284-1snake284-1 Senior Member Posts: 2,500 Senior Member
    I'll say one thing, this is a very successful thread info wise, but I'm no closer than I was. I'm still leaning to the Whelen. However Ernie, you and Teach got me thinking again. I'm thinkin', ahh I'm thinkin' I like Zee's idea even more, get em both. What the heck is another $600 for another gun safe? Ohh I'm getting a headache.

    :bang: :bang: :rotflmao: :rotflmao: :rotflmao:
    I'm Just a Radical Right Wing Nutt Job, Trying to Help Save My Country!
  • snake284-1snake284-1 Senior Member Posts: 2,500 Senior Member
    Whatever I end up with, I appreciate all the enab I mean advice. LOL!!! But everyone has made valid points, which makes me that much more indecisive. But your advice will help. I'm going to give this a lot of thought. However it ends up, it will be a great rifle, because it already is. This Ruger is one of the sweetest rifles in my safe. With a Shilen Match barrel, no matter what cartridge it's chambered for it's gonna be a shooter.
    I'm Just a Radical Right Wing Nutt Job, Trying to Help Save My Country!
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 27,461 Senior Member
    Either cartridge will do what YOU need it to do with unequivocal finesse. The Whelen will just do it with more class.
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • DoctorWhoDoctorWho Senior Member Posts: 9,496 Senior Member
    I still drool when I remember the Ruger M-77 Teach let Me shoot, He did such a great job building it, 6.5mm-06, I love that chambering..........
    "There is some evil in all of us, Doctor, even you, the Valeyard is an amalgamation of the darker sides of your nature, somewhere between your twelfth and final incarnation, and I may say, you do not improve with age. Founding member of the G&A forum since 1996
  • JasonMPDJasonMPD Senior Member Posts: 6,577 Senior Member
    I vote for this:

    9_3X62_Msr.jpg
    “There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers
  • JerryBobCoJerryBobCo Senior Member Posts: 8,227 Senior Member
    Why don't you ask me something hard?

    338-06 and don't look back.
    Jerry

    Gun control laws make about as much sense as taking ex-lax to cure a cough.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    DoctorWho wrote: »
    I still drool when I remember the Ruger M-77

    You'd like it better now- - - - -the barrel grew 2"! I found a new 24 inch 6.5X57 barrel from a European manufacturer at Gun Parts Co. and reamed the chamber to -06 length. It was already blued and threaded for the Ruger action.
    Jerry
  • MileHighShooterMileHighShooter Senior Member Posts: 4,975 Senior Member
    9.3x62. If going with a 30-06 type medium bore, go with the original! Unless you really just want to shoot 200-225gr bullets, which you can do with an 8mm too (which you already have, right?) And really, if handloaded and pushed what is the difference between a 338-06 and 8mm Mauser? That jumps you back up to the 35 Whelen. And then again, unless you just really want to shoot the 200's, its only another small jump from .358 to .366 :) You can choose from 232, 250, 270, 285/286 (the gold standard here, like 180gr 30-06) 300gr and 320gr. Plus you could say you own a genuine dangerous game capable rifle (when pushed hardest with the toughest bullets).....you ain't got one of those! Plus it'll still lay the smack down on the piggys just fine, as well as the deer, but with a bit more class and history.
  • JasonMPDJasonMPD Senior Member Posts: 6,577 Senior Member
    9.3x62. If going with a 30-06 type medium bore, go with the original! Unless you really just want to shoot 200-225gr bullets, which you can do with an 8mm too (which you already have, right?) And really, if handloaded and pushed what is the difference between a 338-06 and 8mm Mauser? That jumps you back up to the 35 Whelen. And then again, unless you just really want to shoot the 200's, its only another small jump from .358 to .366 :) You can choose from 232, 250, 270, 285/286 (the gold standard here, like 180gr 30-06) 300gr and 320gr. Plus you could say you own a genuine dangerous game capable rifle (when pushed hardest with the toughest bullets).....you ain't got one of those! Plus it'll still lay the smack down on the piggys just fine, as well as the deer, but with a bit more class and history.

    Like I said, I vote for this:

    9_3X62_Msr.jpg

    :tooth:
    “There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers
  • DanChamberlainDanChamberlain Senior Member Posts: 3,395 Senior Member
    Mine's a Whelen.
    It's a source of great pride for me, that when my name is googled, one finds book titles and not mug shots. Daniel C. Chamberlain
  • BuffcoBuffco Senior Member Posts: 6,244 Senior Member
    I attended the Bigboreshooter School, where I was steeped in the love of the venerable .35 Whelen.

    I haven't graduated yet, because that requires you buy one. It's next on the list.
  • BigboreshooterBigboreshooter Member Posts: 155 Member
    Buffco wrote: »
    I attended the Bigboreshooter School, where I was steeped in the love of the venerable .35 Whelen.

    Did you ride the short bus?

    Back to the question at hand......

    Snake, no need to worry about the differences in BC between the two rounds. Under FIELD conditions, you can't hold for the difference in trajectory at any range suitable for these cartridges. Anybody who tells you they can is pulling your leg. The only elk I've ever killed, I shot with the Whelen at just a touch over 400 yards. If you miss at any reasonable range, it won't be because either round couldn't get the job done.

    If I could only have one round to hunt with for the rest of my days, it would be the 35 Whelen. Just because.....
    "When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are undisturbed. Luke 11:21
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 27,461 Senior Member
    It takes a Whelen thread to get you to come out of the woodwork?
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 27,461 Senior Member
    Did you ride the short bus?

    Do you really have to ask?
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    The old standby .30-03 (no, that's not a typo) case has been necked up, down and sideways from .22 caliber to .400. Some of those wildcat chamberings didn't survive, while others got standardized by SAAMI. The .35 Whelen was one of the wildcats that got legitimized. The .338-06 is somewhat standard, but correct-headstamp brass is scarce, along with factory-loaded ammo. It began as the .333 OKH, and got upgraded to .338 diameter as the smaller bullets got hard to come by. Whether the bullet is .34 or .36 caliber, these heavyweights represent the biggest practical size that can be launched from an -06 type case with any reasonable amount of velocity. There just isn't enough case volume to push a heavier bullet up to effective speed, no matter what powder is used. Choose either bullet diameter- - - -the performance on game isn't going to be appreciably different. I don't think the animal is likely to notice that one of them makes a .020" bigger hole in its hide.
    Jerry
  • BigboreshooterBigboreshooter Member Posts: 155 Member
    Zee wrote: »
    It takes a Whelen thread to get you to come out of the woodwork?

    It's like using the spotlight to signal Batman. Whenever a Whelen thread is started anywhere on the interweb......I am drawn to it in an almost trance-like state.:guns:
    "When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are undisturbed. Luke 11:21
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 9,326 Senior Member
    If you want a .338 with "better velocities down range", get a RUM, or better still, a Lapua.

    Do the Whelan. Preferably, Ackley's version.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • ghostsniper1ghostsniper1 Banned Posts: 2,645 Senior Member
    I like the oddball Mike. Go with the Whelen. Handloaded with todays powders, there's not much you can't do with it. As I say...... Do it baby.
  • BigboreshooterBigboreshooter Member Posts: 155 Member
    The Whelen may be the only cartridge that was praised by both Elmer Keith and Jack O'Connor.
    "When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are undisturbed. Luke 11:21
Sign In or Register to comment.
Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Guns & Ammo stories delivered right to your inbox every week.

Advertisement