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#2620190 - 12/05/08 04:26 AM Barrel Length for .35 Whelen?
Timberline Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 06/13/05
Posts: 261
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO
I am considering a semi-custom .35 Whelen build project, most likely utilizing a trim Remington M700 action and a McMillan stock. I have years of hunting experience with a broad assortment of cartridges from .243 to .458, but none with the .35 Whelen, which is exactly why I want to give this old classic a try.

My only real dilemma is barrel length.

I’ll press the rifle into action mostly for hunting elk in the dark timber. Shots will almost always be under 200 yards, with the majority of encounters taking place at approximately 100 yards. To save time, I will likely use 225- to 250-grain factory ammunition from Remington, Federal or Nosler. A handy and reasonably lightweight rifle, say 7.5 pounds all up, rifle is desired.

What barrel length – 22 or 24 inches – should I settle on? And why?
"Don't let the things you can't do, stop you from doing the things you can do."

#2620266 - 12/05/08 05:30 AM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: Timberline]
firearms44 Offline
Campfire Guide

Registered: 02/25/06
Posts: 3817
The 700 Classic is a 22" barrel 1 in 16 twist. Will handle 180, 200 and 225 bullet weights with same POI. The 250gr drops 8 inches after sighted in with the 3 lite bullets. This is just tests that I've done with my Classic.

Had T/C make me a 24" barrel for my Encore and it was 1 in 14 twist. Would only shoot 1 bullet weight accurately at a time. Say if you wanted 250gr, then sight in and hunt with that 1 bullet weight. Wouldn't shoot 2 bullet weights same POI.

Why not just buy a 700 Classic and just change the stock to a Micky. Forget the build, save some money and have a tack driver with the 700 factory barrel. On a good day when I'm at my best I can get groups of just over 1/2 inch at 100 with the 3 lite bullets.

PS - I forgot to answer your question - 22" barrel


Edited by firearms44 (12/05/08 05:31 AM)

#2620303 - 12/05/08 05:50 AM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: firearms44]
lochsa Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 12/07/04
Posts: 724
Loc: Idaho
You won't gain anything from a 24" barrel except extra weight. I prefer a 22" for the Whelen.

I have a 700 classic and it is fairly light as is. If you put one in McMillan "edge" remington classic stock, it would certainly be in the 7 to 7.5 lb. range.

#2620489 - 12/05/08 07:15 AM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: Timberline]
Brad Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Registered: 10/31/00
Posts: 22509
I'd do a 1-14" twist replicating the Standard Rem contour cut to 21" in an ADL Hunters Edge. The Whelen really doesn't need a 24" barrel and 22" would be my second choice. 21" is the number of God (3) multiplied by the number of Perfection (7) so you know it can't go wrong (grin).

Seriously, I just like the way the 21" works on a LA and in the Hunters Edge will look perfectly balanced against the very short forearm of the Hunters Edge.

To me, a Whelen is something built for packing and, again for me, that means light weight.
Cartridges are more alike than different.

#2620592 - 12/05/08 08:03 AM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: firearms44]
SKane Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 07/08/07
Posts: 13021
Loc: Middle West
 Originally Posted By: firearms44

Why not just buy a 700 Classic and just change the stock to a Micky. Forget the build, save some money and have a tack driver with the 700 factory barrel.

I did this exact same thing a number of years ago. And don't know for the life of me why I moved it other than I found a steal on a 700KS in 35 Whelen. A little trimmer and lighter was my reasoning. I've long been puzzled at why Remington offers it in a 1:16 twist, but I've yet to find a bullet weight that won't shoot accurately.

I'm for the 22" pipe and could easily see a 21"......Don't really see the need for a 35 Whelen with a 24" tube.
My signature line.

#2620696 - 12/05/08 08:56 AM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: SKane]
Mad_Mikee Offline

Registered: 03/20/08
Posts: 214
Loc: Calgary, AB, Canada
I plan on building a semi-custom 35 whelen as well.
Just gathering parts right now.

Remington ADL 30-06 as the donor (barel is trashed)
Remington Ti style fluted bolt
Holland overside recoil lug
Holland overside firing pin
Holland spring kit (trigger, ejector, bolt stop)
Remington factory bottom DM metal
B&C DM stock
1 piece low talley rings
Leupold VX-II 2x7 33mm (to be ordered still)
Pacnor stainless barrel (to be ordered still)

I'm planning on going with a 21 inch barrel in the 1-14 twist.

Not sure what to shoot yet but probably something in the 225 -250gr. size.

#2622260 - 12/05/08 07:35 PM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: Mad_Mikee]
Gone_Huntin Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 668
Loc: NE PA
Your question was a 22 or 24 inch barrel. I say 22 inch for 2 reasons. The Whelen is very effecient with a 22 inch barrel and the 22 inch is also handier for the black timber you wish to use it in. I have a 358 Win with a 21 inch barrel and a 9.3x62 with a 20 inch barrel. I am quite pleased with the performance and handling they provide.

NRA Patron Member.

#2622313 - 12/05/08 07:52 PM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: Gone_Huntin]
ready_on_the_right Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 01/26/01
Posts: 12470
Loc: GA, USA
12 twist #3 at 22 inches is what I did on a VZ-24 and I really like it.

God, Family, and Country.
NRA Endowment Member

#2622334 - 12/05/08 08:00 PM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: Timberline]
MtnHtr Offline
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 07/22/01
Posts: 8406
A 22" bbl length would suit me fine. Anything shorter and the blast is just a bit much imo.


#2622543 - 12/05/08 09:32 PM Re: Barrel Length for .35 Whelen? [Re: MtnHtr]
BCSteve Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 07/14/04
Posts: 1393
Loc: BC, Canada
22" on my custom stainless Ruger MKII Whelen.

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