375 Whelen (375 Whelen Improved)
The 375 Whelen, also known as the 375-06, is another cartridge that was not developed by the late Col. Townsend Whelen, but was named in his honor. The cartridge was actually the work of the late gunsmith and writer L.R. "Bob" Wallack in 1951 and is based on the 30-06 case necked up. There are two versions, one based on the standard case and retaining the original 17 degree, 30 minute shoulder angle, the other Improved case with a 40 degree shoulder angle. The Improved case holds slightly more powder and and provides better headspace control, so it is the more popular version. The 375 inch caliber is as far as one can go in expanding the 30-06 case without running into headspace problems due to lack of a distinct shoulder. Experiments with larger diameter bullets have invariably led to headspace problems. An example of this was the 400 Whelen which never became popular and is no longer chambered.
The 375 Whelen is not as powerful as the 375 H&H Magnum or the 375 Weatherby Magnum but is nevertheless a good medium bore for most dangerous game. It is certainly adequate for any North American big game. It uses bullets from 200 to 3000 grains, and because it is strictly a handloading proposition, can be quite flexible. There is no reason why it can't be loaded down with 200 or 250 grain bullets for deer hunting as well as loaded to full power for larger animals. This is one advantage of wildcat cartridges; they must be handloaded and so can be tailored to fit different game and hunting situations. As with the 338 and 35 versions of the '06, Ackley's improved design is much superior. In this instance, it is mandatory to ensure adequate headspace control.
Source: Cartridges of the World
|375 Whelen (375 Whelen Improved) Reloading Data|
|Bullet (grs.)||Powder / (grs.)||MV||ME||Source|
|200 SP||IMR4064 / 58.0||2450||2265||N/A|
|235 SP||IMR4064 / 60.0||2475||3205||N/A|
|270 SP||IMR4064 / 57.0||2380||3400||N/A|
|300 SP||IMR4064 / 52.0||2110||2975||N/A|
|Note: This loading data should not be used for loading the standard 35 Whelen or for firefoming improved cases.|
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