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Old August 17, 2014, 05:23 PM   #26
Picher
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Send it back to the manufacturer. It's obviously defective and there's nothing you can do to correct that amount of instability, provided the ammo is correct.
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Old August 17, 2014, 05:43 PM   #27
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I really, really hate to ask, but did they rifle the barrel?
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Old August 17, 2014, 06:22 PM   #28
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Yes, It's rifled
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Old August 17, 2014, 08:38 PM   #29
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It's really simple to find out what's wrong, put a cleaning rod with a tight patch down the tube. Mark the cleaning rod and measure the distance it moves down the bore in the time it takes it to make one complete turn, if it's greater than 16" that's your problem and only a new barrel will fix it or start shooting round nose and pistol bullets. Don't shoot anymore ammunition through it until you measure the twist.

I imagine you picked up this Whelen for primitive deer season, the bad news is it probably won't be fixed in time to hunt with this year.
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Old August 17, 2014, 10:50 PM   #30
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These are normally good shooting rifles. I'd waste no more time screwing with it, call support and get a call tag to send it in for repair...

Tony
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Old August 18, 2014, 01:11 AM   #31
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A close friend of mine had the same problem--an older Remington bolt action that was stamped .270. Wouldn't hold paper at 25 yards, and when it did, it keyholed.

First thing I did was clean the bore. Then, I got a spare lead slug--a Hornady 148 grain HBWC. These are dead soft lead, and will work fine.

I ran an oiled patch down the bore, and then took the lead bullet and rolled it between two pieces of metal until I reduced the diameter. I tapered one end, oiled it, then tapped in to the muzzle with a block of wood and a mallet.

I removed the bullet, and measured it.

It mic'ed out at .308.

I then got out my .30-06 dummy rounds, smoked the shoulder and neck and chambered it. Chambered just fine.

I then took it to the range, and loaded it with .30-06 ball ammo. The single round went OK, and the case measurements were good. Now, I shot it with 3 rounds for a group at 100 yards. The group measured just under an inch.

My friend had a .270 marked rifle, chambered in .30-06.

Check that bore diameter.
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Old August 18, 2014, 01:25 AM   #32
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if it's not a bored out barrel I would think that at that range with keyholing that the crown is damaged and a bur is snagging the bullets as they are leaving the barrel and giving them backspin, is there anything like a burr or other jagged edge out of the ordinary visable near the muzzle?
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Old August 18, 2014, 04:22 PM   #33
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Take it to a gunsmith and get a chamber cast done. Then you will know for sure.
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Old August 18, 2014, 06:09 PM   #34
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Have you tried to put a bullet in the muzzle end to see how far it goes? If it goes in all the way you will know the problem.
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Old August 18, 2014, 09:45 PM   #35
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um... he did, it's in the thread.
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Old August 19, 2014, 06:59 PM   #36
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I took it back today to the shop I bought it from. He gave me a new rifle and was good enough to give me a new box of Hornady Superformance to replace the shots I used sighting in.

He is going to shoot it this week with new type of ammo and see if that what it was. I will post the results
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Old August 19, 2014, 07:26 PM   #37
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Did you check the head stamp on the rounds you actually fired? Any possibility 30-06 were packed in the 35 Whelen box by mistake? Just a WAG.
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Old August 19, 2014, 09:04 PM   #38
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but be darned if I've ever seen one with each bullet hitting the target perfectly parallel to it!!



My thoughts, exactly. And all points toward the right, too.
The only thing I have on the place that keyholes is a 5.45x39 shooting 70 grain FMJ. It only throws a profile like that once in 20+/- shots. Sometimes point left and sometime point right(or up or down or ??)
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Old August 20, 2014, 08:01 AM   #39
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well all's well that ends well. good luck with your new rifle.
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Old August 20, 2014, 08:48 AM   #40
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You bought the rifle from a good dealer. He'll figure out the problem, or return it to the factory. Please let us know what the problem was, should you find out.

Good luck with the new rifle.
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Old August 20, 2014, 03:07 PM   #41
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Please reduce the size of your pictures.
Key holing is caused by undersized bullets, oversized barrel or sometimes too low velocity. A lack of lube on cast bullets will do it too. It has nothing whatever to do with the rifling twist. Especially at excessively short range. A bad crown won't either. That'd just have really bad accuracy.
You can't disguise a .444 barrel by stamping it wrong. A .444 barrel is way bigger than a .358 barrel. You'd notice a .30 cal vs .35 too.
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Old August 21, 2014, 01:36 AM   #42
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1st thought

Immediately thought that some '06 ammo got in the Whelen box.
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Old August 21, 2014, 11:40 AM   #43
taylorce1
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OP said the bullets fit the bore, so bore/bullet mismatch wasn't the problem. OP never did run a tight patch down the bore to measure twist, which could have also told us if there was other problems. I guess it's like a Tootsie Pop "The world may never know!"
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Old August 21, 2014, 11:46 AM   #44
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OP got the rifle replaced, nothing more to see here.
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