300 H&H vs 375 H&H vs 35 Whelen

300 H&H vs 375 H&H vs 35 Whelen

This is a discussion on 300 H&H vs 375 H&H vs 35 Whelen within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I have been without a bolt gun for sometime now, and since my wife has joined me deer hunting, I have set up my little ...

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Thread: 300 H&H vs 375 H&H vs 35 Whelen

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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    300 H&H vs 375 H&H vs 35 Whelen

    I have been without a bolt gun for sometime now, and since my wife has joined me deer hunting, I have set up my little 1894 44 mag with a fixed Burris 4x for her to use.

    I was thinking about 1 bolt gun to do it all, from deer, to big bear, and another possible African hunting safari. I am partial to big bullets and a 35 caliber seems like the ticket. The latest fast steping magnums just don't do it for me.

    The 3 listed above seem to have the attributes in a wide range of usable bullet sellection, caliber , and velocity. Also open sights are a must, even though it will be scoped. I cannot fathom why anyone would want a rifle without irons for backup. Also, this rifle will only be used with my own ammo, that I assemble.

    Anyone have any thoughts concerning these three? Recoil characteristics? Experience in the field with them? Suggested rifles currently in production for the listed calibers?
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    I don’t have any experience with any of them but since the 35 Whelen is based on a necked up 30/06 that would be my choice. Brass availability and being able use a standard action verses a magnum action are another plus.
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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    I agree with that Msgt. The longer action doesn't bother me though, or the added weight. But it's true, I could just run my 30-06 cases thru the Whelen die and make them. Anyone know who currently manafacturers the 35 Whelen chambered rifle?
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    300 H&H is a good round. I've fired them through my .300 WBY Mag a few times. Much cheaper, and they reach out ALMOST as far. For deer and such they've always worked great, but I haven't tried them on anything bigger. The .300 WBY Mag is an EXCELLENT round, though. I wouldn't rule that out as a possibility. They do have quite a bit more knock down power, and they don't drop as much. I do plan on using it for bear, and I've heard that it works great. As far as African game, I really have no idea. The 35 or 375 would probably be better for that, but I think those are a bit overkill for deer.

    Recoil isn't too bad with the .300 H&H or WBY Mag, but I have no experience with the other two.

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    Don’t know of any manufacturers but a quick look on GunBroker yielded 17 rifles and the prices were not too bad except for the Dakota Arms rifle, very pricey.

    Buy 35 whelen Bolt Action & Sell 35 whelen Bolt Action Items at GunBroker.com
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    I guess that if I had to pick just one of those 3 you mentioned, I'd go for the .375. Yeah a bit of overkill for deer, but dead is dead. I think that the .375 has more potential for the big, bigger, biggest game........
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chaplain Scott View Post
    I guess that if I had to pick just one of those 3 you mentioned, I'd go for the .375. Yeah a bit of overkill for deer, but dead is dead. I think that the .375 has more potential for the big, bigger, biggest game........
    IIRC, the .375H&H is the minimum caliber you can use in several African countries (for big game). It would be my choice too.
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    Can't say much about the other two cartridges but I have a .375 H&H Magnum in the form of a 1980s vintage Winchester Model 70 Super Express.

    Seems to give a trajectory performance much like the .30-06 when used with 180 grain loads which ain't half bad. I've never taken it hunting but have shot at random targets at longer ranges. Mine has open sights but requires little hold-over to hit random targets out to 400 yards.


    Shown here taking part in some informal rock busting. The target was a rectangular rock roughly 18"X24" stood up vertically and positioned about 380 yards out according to a range finder. Even the 300 grain round nose load would smack the rock when the sights were placed up near the top. It was surprising that the round nose bullet shot that flat.



    A healthy charge of IMR 4350 will propel a 300 grain Hornady round nose soft point or the Sierra 300 grain spitzer boat tail to 2628 fps. This gives a muzzle energy of 4602 ft./lbs. Using the 300 grain spitzer boat tail at this velocity, the rifle may be sighted to be 5 inches high at 100 yards. It will then be 5 3/4-inch inches at 200 yards and dead on at 300 yards. It still hits with over 3100 ft. lbs. at 300 yards.

    It certainly is not needed for anything found in Texas but the rifle and cartridge are interesting and fun. The .375 H&H seems to be really accurate. Even with open sights it will group under 2-inches at 100 yards for 5-shots.

    Recoil is heavy though. A couple of 5-shot groups off of the bench rest and I'm ready to go do something else for awhile. I can push it on through a box of 20 but won't be shooting my best groups if I open the second box. The rifle is much more manageable when shot off-hand.


    A factory Winchester 270 grain Silver Tip spitzer chronographed at 2714 fps with 4417 ft. lbs. of muzzle energy.
    Last edited by bmcgilvray; May 24th, 2011 at 03:25 PM.
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    When you say "African game" do you mean the big, dangerous kind? (lion, buffalo, elephant?) If so, the 375 by all means. Since you said you brew your own, you can easily download the .375 to a mild deer rounds.

    If antelope and gizzelle is more your speed, the .300 would be more than ample (and less punishing).

    I thought I loved the .458 Win Mag until I managed to fire both barrels on a fine English double one day. Never fired that rounds again!
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    I would go with a 375 H&H in a CZ You can pick them up new for around $1100 and the single set trigger is pretty sweet
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    I would also recommend a CZ 550, but in the 9.3x62 Mauser cartridge that is so popular in Europe and Africa. Its caliber is big enough to be legal in Africa. It is only a tad larger in case capacity to the 35 Whelan.

    Only real downside is that you would pretty much need to handload. But you would practically have to do that with the 35 Whelan as well. Nosler makes all of their best bullets, including the Partition and Accubond in 9.3mm, and Hornady makes their excellent Interlock in that caliber too. Plus there are bullets available from Barnes and Lapua.

    Here is a photo showing it with other common cartridges:




    The 9.3x62 is on the far left. Second from the left is the 30-06. The last cartridge on the right is the 308 Win

    It seems to me that the 9.3x62 is just the exact cartridge that you want. Like it was made to order for your needs. It is just slightly more powerful than the 35 Whelan, and also legal for big game in Africa.

    It would be a fantastic cartridge for hunting American Buffalo too. This teenage girl in this photo used a CZ 550 in 9.3x62 to take this nice Buffalo:




    CZ also makes the model 550 in a Mannlicher carbine version in the 9.3x62 with a 20.5 inch barrel that has a very handsome stock:






    A fellow on 24 hour campfire.com said that he was able to get his to shoot real well after just doing a little experimenting handloading. Here is a handload using the Hornady Interlock:




    The standard CZ 550 rifles come with 23.6 inch barrels. Besides the standard wood stocked 550 American rifle, CZ also offers the 9.3x62 in the 550 American with a Kevlar stock, and a carbine version with the same short 20.5 inch barrel, but again in a touch Kevlar synthetic stock. So there are a total of 4 models to choose from.

    .

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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    Lanceorygun , thanks for the suggestion on the 9.3x62. I did a little research and found it was invented for the Dutch and Germany settlers in South Africa as a do it all cartridge. This is intriguing to me as my wife is Dutch and from South Africa. This may very well be what I'm looking for. I believe I shotone over there a couple of years ago, but didn't even understand what it was.

    The 375 H&H may have a little more recoil than I want to deal with, and if the 9.3x62 is good for Cape Buffalo, I'm thinking it's good for anything. This may be it.
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    Distinguished Member Array LanceORYGUN's Avatar
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    Well, whether it is legal for Cape Buffalo will depend on the country that you are hunting in. I believe that it is acceptable in both South Africa and Zimbabwe. Some countries do require the 375 H&H for Cape Buffalo. The 35 Whelan certainly would be ruled out.

    The 9.3x62 would certainly be well suited for big game in North America. Plenty of gun for Elk, Moose, Bear, and Buffalo. Definitely overkill for deer, but the 375 H&H would be even more so. Bullets usually range from 250 to 285 gr. Although Lapua makes a lighter 220 gr hunting bullet in 9.3mm It might be a good choice for developing a deer load.

    I'm really not a magnum fan either. And as well all know, shot placement is way more important than the sheer energy of a cartridge.

    Besides the CZ 550, Ruger introduced their brand new Model 77 Hawkeye African standard action length rifle this year. Previously the rifle has only been offered in larger Magnum calibers. And 9.3x62 is one of the cartridges being offered in it.





    This Ruger rifle is also available in the new .375 Ruger caliber. It matches the .375 H&H in power, but in a much shorter and more modern case design that fits in standard action lengths.

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    Glockman, I have handloaded for a friends .375 H&H for years. I load 235 grain Speer hot cores for him over a light charge of powder. This load flattens deer and doesn't recoil too bad. I'd say it's on par with a hot 30-06. The .375 H&H is THE do it all caliber. It is what many Alaskan guides use for the really big bears and it is the minimum legal caliber for dangerous game in many African countries. The 9.3X62 is also a fine round but it's not nearly as prolific as the .375 H&H. Almost every gun manufacturer, bullet maker and ammunition plant support the .375. The 9.3x62 doesn't have the support here that the .375 has.

    The .375 H&H is a legend and is revered as one of the finest chamberings ever developed. I would pick it hands down over any other caliber if you have dreams of Africa floating around in the back of your mind. Recoil isn't bad either when you are doing the handloading.
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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    Thanks Atctimmy. This is going to be a harder choice than I thought. I have been doing some research and the 9.3 is not going to be hard to find components for. Also , you are correct on the 375. All I know at this point is I can't wait to knock around in the hills with one of those big rifles. I like the looks of them, and everything about their versatility. I will probably research this for a couple of months.
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