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Thread: Where do all of the wildcat rifles go when owner die ?

  1. #81
    Boolit Buddy Ozark Howler's Avatar
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    I had a 257 Roberts Ackley Improved built on a commercial 98 action and Bishop stock, built by Harry McGowen himself in the late 60's. I think I paid about $300 at the time and used it for many years, when I went to sell it I could not find anyone that wanted it, eventually I removed the barrel and sold the action and stock separately, and made a little more than I initially paid for it.

  2. #82
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    I had a .17-222 in a beautiful Martini action and stock. The loudest thing I’ve ever owned. Played with it for awhile but traded it off. Now I’ve got a .310/.32-20 martini cadet, don’t know if you would call this a wildcat, it’s not a .310 cadet anymore or a 32-20. I form .32-20 brass using .30 carbine dies and .321 bullets. It’s a real sweetheart and I enjoy shooting it a lot. Don’t plan or getting rid of this one. As to the op’s question, successful ones become factory, .300 blkout for example while the rest wind up in the back of someones safe or are rebarreled back to a common caliber after the new owner got a really great deal on a ‘project’ rifle at the estate sale.
    Last edited by Baltimoreed; 05-19-2020 at 12:28 AM.

  3. #83
    Boolit Master
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    I figure that when I die, then it won't matter anymore what my family does with my guns. Keep em, sell em, dispose of them. That is their problem then. Of course with thje current corona virus adventures, they may become much more militant though.

  4. #84
    Boolit Master Drm50's Avatar
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    I was at auction where an estate was being sold. A good many guns and several wildcats, all in varmit type BA rifles. The 700 Rems were bringing $400 average, all older BDLs. The wildcats that were on 98 actions all with bull barrels averaged $200. Less than the actions and triggers were worth. It is very true customs and wildcats are not going to get your money back.

  5. #85
    Boolit Master


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    When my grandfather died the family was in turmoil and while I did end up with a few things, there were several I would have loved to have gotten - would have happily paid for - that vanished. Long story that I won't retell here.

    One, in particular, was a small-ring(?) 98 Mauser in 7x57 Ackley that had the barrel turned down to a light sporter contour and was stocked with a pretty straight-combed classic stock and some sort of aftermarket trigger. It was as fine an example of the post-WWII sporterization of Mausers as you could have asked for, and the grain of the stock was gorgeous.

    I don't know where it went. I suspect it's still floating around north Mississippi and I'd probably pay more than it was worth to get it back.

  6. #86
    Boolit Master


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    I have a 6.5 jap that was rechambered to 6.5X257 roberts. It is pretty nice except the front sight is home made from a block of steel and a nickle soldered together. I got it because it was not a standard chambering and I wanted to play with something non standard. That itch is and has been well and truly scratched. I will probably offer it someplace like here with dies and some brass at some point. It is fun and accurate but I have to be careful not shoot 6.5X55 ammo in it.
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  7. #87
    Every now and again I’ll see an older rifle that’s wildcatted at the local gunshow. Usually they are so expensive I can’t justify the chance on something that’s maybe shot out. I do have one 22-243 Rayhill Rocket it’s a lot of fun. I hope the kids are interested so I have someone to leave it to.

  8. #88
    Boolit Master
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    IIRC you can shoot base ammo in ackley improved chambers with no ill effect, like 7x57 in a 7x57 imp chamber.

  9. #89
    Boolit Buddy FrankG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by justashooter View Post
    IIRC you can shoot base ammo in ackley improved chambers with no ill effect, like 7x57 in a 7x57 imp chamber.
    True to some extent . Not all reamers were always cut to same dimensions for same cartridge designation . It used to be deep dark secrets with gunsmiths !

  10. #90
    Boolit Buddy
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    If they are Wildcats built on 1885 Winchesters, they usually end up at my house!

  11. #91
    Boolit Mold
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    I only have a couple, a .357 Herrett Contender barrel that I used for IHMSA and a XP-100 that was rechambered in 7mm IHMSA. Always liked the .357 Herrett.

  12. #92
    Boolit Grand Master

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    With no Saami standard for a wildcat round, every reamer ground can be different under the same designation. Everyone has their idea of what works best and whats needed. several wildcats Ive seen some what recently were the 30-378 there were 7 or 8 versions before weatherby took it up as a factory round. The 6.5 X 284 also had a lot of versions before being picked up by the factorizes. There were many versions of the 6.5 creed moor and 300 BO also, before it was settled out. This is why its so important to make a cast of a wildcat or custom chamber. Just to make sure what you have as to version, throat leade.

  13. #93
    Boolit Master
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    Not that I'm looking to sell but this thread made me think about it. Have an Encore barrel chambered in 307EDKR. How long would that take to that sell?

  14. #94
    Cast Boolits Owner


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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed K View Post
    Not that I'm looking to sell but this thread made me think about it. Have an Encore barrel chambered in 307EDKR. How long would that take to that sell?

    Not the 307EDKR?

    What’s the story behind that one?
    "Things always get better once thought, time, and money are applied in the correct amounts at the correct time"
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    "The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion."
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  15. #95
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by No_1 View Post
    What’s the story behind that one?
    As has often been said given the number and variety of SAAMI recognized cartridges there is really no need for wildcats in this day and age. OK, with that in mind we on this forum have to admit spending a lot of time and energy doing things that 98% of the population either would (1) never even recognize the need for or (2) just go to the store and buy it if they could or (3) go without if they couldn't. So with that in mind:

    Was pretty well into the Contender platform and definitely preferred a rimmed case (bear in mind we're not claiming rimless cartridges are less accurate, just a preference in break-opens). As some point most Contender shooters eye the Encore platform for its' increased potential in power. However most of the bottlenecked rounds giving that advantage do not have a rim. Really wasn't looking for anything in the way of power over and above a 308 which is a nice, balanced round.

    Around the same time a local custom TC barrel maker (On Target Technologies LLC) opened shop and a friendship was struck with the owner. Mike holds a patent on an EDM chambering method as well as he was involved in trademarking a cartridge configuration with a radius at the shoulder-neck transition (OTTR). We put our heads together and came up with the 307EDKR:
    • Parent is a 308 based round
    • Win 307 brass used for its' rim and thicker walls/heavy weight
    • Case body blown out straight in the Ackley style
    • Neck bears the trademarked OTTR radius
    • Throated for a 165gr boat tail bullet
    • 16-1/4" barrel for pistol or carbine use
    • Built on a fluted special twist Pac-Nor SS super match blank



    Keeping in mind this was at least as much an R&D/Development effort as it was a means to arrive at an end the results are nonetheless worthwhile:
    • Performance is great(power/accuracy)
    • The blown out walls roughly offset the reduced volume of the 307 relative to the 308.
    • Case life is fantastic (no doubt aided by Mike's perfectly matched custom dies)
    • Properly headspaces factory 308 ammo - all that's required is switching extractors.


    As to whether the Weatherby-ish OTTR offers an improvement, it would take more controlled experimentation than this shooter is capable of to prove one way or the other. Ultimately the collaboration was enjoyable and while the end result is practical the path getting there certainly was not - but fun! It's personalized to the degree selling doesn't ever enter into the mind...

  16. #96
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed K View Post
    Have an Encore barrel chambered in 307EDKR. How long would that take to that sell?
    Don't know if there's standard time limit to sale things like that.

    It could go overnight if you find a buyer that quickly. ??

  17. #97
    Boolit Mold
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    Many years ago I found a nice custom pre-war Winchester Model 70 custom rifle chambered for something called the .284 Bennet Magnum at my local gun shop. It was in great condition and very inexpensive. It was so cheap I could not pass it up. I could never find much information on the .284 Bennet Magnum, so I had it rechambered for the 7mm Remington Magnum. It turned out to be a tack driver and I killed several deer with it.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check