400 whelen
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  1. #1
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    400 whelen

    i have a sporterized 98 mauser in 8x57 and next year i'm either going to rebore or rebarrel to the 400 whelen. (read https://web.archive.org/web/20101203...pace_myth.htm# to headspace it). i was going to do the 375 whelen but i already have a 9.3x57(.366"). and i can say that 4-something something!


    since 150 lbs whitetails will be its main course, i'll only go 1600-1800fps in 350-400gr fn gc. i hunt in close cover, so 60+ yards is a loooong shot, 25-35 yards is more likely.


    1944 98 mauser 8x57mm





    i've been thinking of taking it to JES(i like that peep sight) but i might rebarrel it to 24"(it has a 22" barrel). i doubt that extra 2" is a make or break situation, but i like the 24" over the 22". the 98 mauser NEEDS a timney trigger and i'll go with richard's stock( Richards Microfit Gunstocks ), it will be a wolverine style and either a blue coral or black walnut stock.


    i doubt highly that i'll get the chance to hunt elk or moose, but my sons' might and i'll just happen to have a rifle that they can use....it sounds good, don't it!!!



    “Einstein's relativity work is a magnificent mathematical garb which fascinates, dazzles and makes people blind to the underlying errors. The theory is like a beggar clothed in purple whom ignorant people take for a king... its exponents are brilliant men but they are metaphysicists rather than scientists.”
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    Quote Originally Posted by 500linebaugh View Post
    i have a sporterized 98 mauser in 8x57 and next year i'm either going to rebore or rebarrel to the 400 whelen. (read https://web.archive.org/web/20101203...pace_myth.htm# to headspace it). i was going to do the 375 whelen but i already have a 9.3x57(.366"). and i can say that 4-something something!



    since 150 lbs whitetails will be its main course, i'll only go 1600-1800fps in 350-400gr fn gc. i hunt in close cover, so 60+ yards is a loooong shot, 25-35 yards is more likely.


    1944 98 mauser 8x57mm





    i've been thinking of taking it to JES(i like that peep sight) but i might rebarrel it to 24"(it has a 22" barrel). i doubt that extra 2" is a make or break situation, but i like the 24" over the 22". the 98 mauser NEEDS a timney trigger and i'll go with richard's stock( Richards Microfit Gunstocks ), it will be a wolverine style and either a blue coral or black walnut stock.


    i doubt highly that i'll get the chance to hunt elk or moose, but my sons' might and i'll just happen to have a rifle that they can use....it sounds good, don't it!!!

    Nice project and choice for a conversion.

    If you want/need a quality 6.5mm, there is one more cartridge to consider on the other end of the spectrum based on the 8x87 Mauser, rimmed and rimless. The 6.5x57 is a great performing cartridge. Commercial ammo is available by Sellier and Bellot, quality brass by RWS, loads of bullet options, and modern powders really give it a new level of performance. Bolt face and magazine feed do not need modifications.
    PDP aka: Pappy
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  3. #3
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    Met a fellow at the Safari Rifle Shoot in Montana earlier this summer who was using a 400 Whelen, built on a Springfield action. He really liked his rifle, and said that it worked flawlessly.

    The 400 isn't needed for anything in North America, but if you want it, why not?

    I think that if it was my project, I'd just go with a JES re-bore of the existing barrel.

    Guy

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    400 Whelen was noted as having a small shoulder (almost a "ghost shoulder") and headspace issues were the result. According to some, the .375 is about as much as the modified 30-06 case can handle and still have enough shoulder to prevent the headspace issues of the 400 Whelen. Before you take the leap, consider the .411 AI, or better yet the .411 Hawk. Both have a minimum body taper (the .411 Hawk more so) and they eliminate the headspace issues of the original 400 Whelen.

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    Do a bit of research and buy a reamer for the original spec. .400. Supposedly has less taper and therefore a sharper shoulder, IIRC. I've often considered such a build, having a barrel cut with .410 grooves, which then gives me the flexibility to use the many .41 cal moulds I use for the 41 magnum. the heavier moulds would be a useable choice for deer, 260, 280, and 290 gr. Personally, I'd go with a new barrel, 24" as you're all ready thinking, and have it turned with a Rigby style contour, then a band ramp front from NECG with a sourdough blade. Makes a great, fast, accurate sight, especially in dark heavy cover.

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    I have been studying on straight case cartridges from a different angle. I'm stuck with 38cal minimum and am looking for the most velocity I can get. With straight case limitations and cases available there is only so much you can get as far as velocity. When you are up in 38cal and larger light bullets are blunt and are a handi cap at longer ranges. I'm trying to stay away from cartridges that headspace on case mouth. Belted mags are going to be to large a caliber to achieve velocity. I don't think you can go over 40 cal before it becomes a lost cause. I'm looking for a cartridge that will be used on deer only. That will make the best offhand hunting rifle that is capable of 300+ yds without rediculous hold over. Most shots are under 100yds but I want capability for the occasional shot that always pops up. In Ohio several times a season you will get to watch a trophy buck in a clearing or field that is out off range . Since we have rifle it has extended practical range to 200yds. I'm looking for more.
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    If the 400 Whelen is as good as the 35 Whelen, that should be a big animal dropper.
    M700 and 500linebaugh like this.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drm50 View Post
    I have been studying on straight case cartridges from a different angle. I'm stuck with 38cal minimum and am looking for the most velocity I can get. With straight case limitations and cases available there is only so much you can get as far as velocity. When you are up in 38cal and larger light bullets are blunt and are a handi cap at longer ranges. I'm trying to stay away from cartridges that headspace on case mouth. Belted mags are going to be to large a caliber to achieve velocity. I don't think you can go over 40 cal before it becomes a lost cause. I'm looking for a cartridge that will be used on deer only. That will make the best offhand hunting rifle that is capable of 300+ yds without rediculous hold over. Most shots are under 100yds but I want capability for the occasional shot that always pops up. In Ohio several times a season you will get to watch a trophy buck in a clearing or field that is out off range . Since we have rifle it has extended practical range to 200yds. I'm looking for more.
    With a straight case you're only headspace options are on the case mouth, on a belt, or on a rim. Ruling out the case mouth and a magnum belt leaves you with a rimmed cartridge and the challenges that brings to a standard bolt rifle. One exception to your criteria would be a wildcat based on the .24o Weatherby Magnum. The .240 Wby uses a belt similar to the belt of magnum cartridges. However, the 240 Wby belt is the same diameter at the rim and base as a standart 30-06 or 308 cartridge.

    There has been some discussion along these lines on another forum. A poster there named 375Carp designed a straight wall .375 caliber using the .240 Weatherby case. Another poster, crooked creek, came up with a 405-2" (.411" caliber) wildcat based on the Weatherby case. Further, crooked creek forms his cases from .308 brass using a .240 Wby die and it creates the belt in the process.

    Here is crooked creek's 405-2" Belted below. He says, "Bullet used: Hornady 350 Grain Flat Point .411" marketed as for 405 Winchester."

    93809d1550518764-405-x-2-belted-american-img_0304.jpg

    I see no reason the same couldn't be done to create a 405 (.411") cartridge on the full length 240 Weatherby case or an altered 30-06 case. The process, I suppose, could be used to make a cartridge for whatever length action you have - .308 length (2.8"), 7x57 length (3.0"), 8x57 length (3.25"), or 30-06 length (3.36").

  10. #9
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    For some good info on the .400 Whelen check out the Gun Digest 2018, 72nd edition, page 149. " The .400 Whelen" by Bob Woodfill. Discusses the original specs of the round, where to get the reamer,etc. A good read for info. Also, if you are thinking about "a" variant of the .400 check out the Gun Digest 2006, 60th edition. Page 10, "Magnificent Maverick: The .400 Brown Whelen" by William V. Woodward. Again, an excellent read on the cartridge and variants. Some years ago in Rifle or Handloader there was another good article on the .400. I recall the gent used a Ruger 77, just to show a push feed action could work with the minimally shouldered .400. You'll have to look that one up yourself, it's in my archives, but too many things to get done right now to look.
    The .400 should be a wonderful medium large bore rifle for cast slugs. The reason I've been eyeing up my large box of actions lately.

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    Tactical Lever likes this.



    “Einstein's relativity work is a magnificent mathematical garb which fascinates, dazzles and makes people blind to the underlying errors. The theory is like a beggar clothed in purple whom ignorant people take for a king... its exponents are brilliant men but they are metaphysicists rather than scientists.”
    Nikola Tesla


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