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Old February 13, 2013, 11:26 PM   #1
jrhilde
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New H&R in .35 Whelen

Just recently bought an H&R for the single shot, exposed hammer, primitive weapon caliber stipulations in some states and am looking for some info on the caliber---I know it's based on a necked up 30-06 case and the gun shop owner and a few others have mentioned that the recoil is noticeable--the recoil pad on it is about standars size for a typical big bore and even has a little give to it, but it's nowhere close to the bigger and much softer pad on my 700 in 06---so I'm asking, would it be wise to go ahead and have my gunsmith replace this pad with a good Packmeyer or Limbsaver or just man-up and shoot it as is---I have no problem with the recoil on my 06's but this is a much smaller, shorter and lighter gun and as I mentioned, I've been told the .35 Whelen is pretty snappy--- John
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File Type: jpg H&R pig gun, 35 Whelan 005.jpg (246.6 KB, 41 views)
File Type: jpg H&R pig gun, 35 Whelan 010.jpg (247.8 KB, 22 views)
File Type: jpg H&R pig gun, 35 Whelan 011.jpg (242.4 KB, 18 views)
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Old February 14, 2013, 01:05 AM   #2
FrankenMauser
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Recoil will be noticeable, but isn't anything to worry about.

Shoot it as-is. If you decide you don't like the recoil, go from there.
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Old February 14, 2013, 10:39 AM   #3
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just load your ammo to match the recoil level you want. If you make reduced loads you could use 35 rem bullets or heavy jacket 357 bullets
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Old February 14, 2013, 11:55 AM   #4
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That ought to be a rocker! 250 gr bullet at 2500 fps out of a 5 lbs rifle???
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Old February 14, 2013, 02:22 PM   #5
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I used to have one in .45-70, and you really can load anything you want in those rifles. No need to worry about cycling, etc. I had 2 loads I shot a lot. One pushed a 350 grn hard cast at 1100. The other pushed a 350 interlock at 2050. The full bore .35 whelen is going to buck quite a bit, as did the .45-70. I used iron sights for that reason. I didn't want a frownie face on my forehead.
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Old February 14, 2013, 03:45 PM   #6
FrankenMauser
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Quote:
That ought to be a rocker! 250 gr bullet at 2500 fps out of a 5 lbs rifle???
It isn't as bad as you might think.

H&R's listed weight for the rifles isn't very precise. The .35 Whelen version weighs in at about 6.6 lbs with iron sights, and 7.5 lbs with the factory scope (if selected).

It's a good compromise weight for compactness and carry-ability, versus recoil and controllability.

It'll let you know you just launched a sledgehammer, but shouldn't be punishing with proper technique.
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Old February 15, 2013, 11:10 PM   #7
jrhilde
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I will have to admit, my Remingtons and Rugers have had very good recoil pads [ the ones that didn't got a good one shortly after purchase ] and so shooting the 06's and the .300 WSM was not really uncomfortable--- I've just never been a fan of a sore shoulder if it can be avoided---so I'll go out and sight in this thing and see if the semi-soft factory pad is enough---I enjoyed shooting my #1 in 45-70, but the Rugers are somewhat heavy and that helps dampen the recoil---fortunately, it seems that in the mad rush to stock up on ammo, the .35 Whelen was pretty much overlooked, had no problem finding plenty of ammo for it at Gander Mountain. Found it on an end cap with the 45-70's and .444 Marlins-----I don't have anything that fires .223, but it will be nice to be able to buy .22 lr again at some point----
Forgive me, but I like threads with photos---
Attached Images
File Type: jpg H&R pig gun, 35 Whelan 006.jpg (240.2 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg H&R pig gun, 35 Whelan 012.jpg (247.8 KB, 9 views)
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Old February 16, 2013, 11:42 AM   #8
Jack O'Conner
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My custom Winchester 670 in 35 Whelen has a LimbSaver pad and the muzzle was ported in Michigan by MagnaPort. Barrel length is 24 inches. Recoil is noticeable but not brutal at all. Muzzle jump was eliminated by the MagnaPort process.

35 Whelen is a very good cartridge for all of North America's big game.

Jack
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Old February 16, 2013, 06:47 PM   #9
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Do some research before you buy it. There was a recall on the .35 Whelens due to misfires. I think they even stopped making them for a while. The problem is that a single-shot headspaces off the shoulder and the .35 Whelen has a VERY tiny shoulder. Therefore, it is easy for the headspace to be off in a break-open Whelen.
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Old February 16, 2013, 10:16 PM   #10
FrankenMauser
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Quote:
Do some research before you buy it. There was a recall on the .35 Whelens due to misfires. I think they even stopped making them for a while. The problem is that a single-shot headspaces off the shoulder and the .35 Whelen has a VERY tiny shoulder. Therefore, it is easy for the headspace to be off in a break-open Whelen.
That was several years ago.

They learned their lesson the hard way, and have corrected the issue.
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Old February 17, 2013, 07:59 AM   #11
jrhilde
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Just haven't had the chance to get out to the range with it as yet, but obviously already have it so I'll work with what I have---the WMA officer that highly reccomended it stated he and at least two other hunting companions have them and they have had no issues at all with them and that the accuracy was very good---just commented on the stiff recoil but that can be countered with a decent pad----I'll try and get out this week and give it a try and then get back on here with either a "wow" or an "ouch"-------John
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Old February 17, 2013, 10:17 PM   #12
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Don't get your eye too close to the scope! I have a 700 BDL and it has 2 stock cross pins just like a magnum No powder puff gun a 35 Whelen!
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Old February 18, 2013, 08:09 PM   #13
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Thanks for the warning Guv--maybe I better take another look at the scope and be certain it's as far forward as it can be and still get a full field of view, without getting clobbered--- I usually do pretty well with most of the boomers, but it can be hilarious when some of the very friendly strangers out at the range offer to let me shoot something I've been admiring, their .338 magnum, another guy's .500 S&W and the best of all, an old buddies Ruger #1 in .416---not trying to sound macho or reckless, just get a kick out of moderate recoil --- the more I hear about this Whelen, it sounds like I'm in for a treat--- got to be honest though, it sounds like a replacement recoil pad might be going on there real quick-----John
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Old February 18, 2013, 10:20 PM   #14
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35 Whelen

I have two H&R Whelens, My wife has the light barrel gun, I load 200 grn bullets for her and 250 grn bullets for my heavier barrel model.
The guns shoot well and recoil isn't a problem, think of it as a 30-06 on steroids. I shoot 250 grain bullets with moderate recoil, not much could take a hit from a 35 Whelen.
The caliber seems to be popular with Bear hunters, North Fork makes two copper big game bullets in 358, Barnes does as well.
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Old February 18, 2013, 11:09 PM   #15
jrhilde
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One of the many reasons I moved from Indiana to Louisiana is for the pig hunting which is the primary reason for the .35 Whelen, which has now been added to the list of calibers for our single shot exposed hammer rifles--I was all set to buy a 45-70 or the .444 marlin, but then got a chance to talk to a WMA officer out by the Honey Island Swamp range and he tipped me off about the Whelen--he says he and a number of his fellow hunters have all switched over to the Whelen and it is a real hog buster---
I was all set to buy a camo stocked beauty, but I really like the wood and when told it was actually walnut, told the shop owner to order me this one--I got on the net and read up on H&R accuracy and dependability and .35 Whelen ballistics---all looks good to me and I'll be getting out to the range soon--if the scope catches me just above the right eye, I'll have my wife take a photo to share with you all------John
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Old February 18, 2013, 11:19 PM   #16
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A couple more shots of it--I'm thinking I'm going to have some fun with this round-----------John
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File Type: jpg H&R pig gun, 35 Whelan 008.jpg (232.9 KB, 12 views)
File Type: jpg H&R pig gun, 35 Whelan 007.jpg (242.7 KB, 10 views)
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Old February 18, 2013, 11:26 PM   #17
Guv
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I think it's a good looking gun, better than my 1st deer rifle, a 157 H&R 30-30.
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Old February 19, 2013, 12:10 AM   #18
jrhilde
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Thanks Guv, I think I'll learn to shoot this one well and keep it---haven't even had the chance to put a round thru it, but I sure like how that round looks, like a 30-06 that's been working out--------John
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Old February 20, 2013, 01:02 PM   #19
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I agree that the scope is very likely to hit your forehead as mounted.

The .35 Whelen is an excellent cartridge that will handle anything on this continent, including big bear.
The recoil in that rifle might be punishing, but with a top notch recoil pad might not be too bad.

Jerry
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