500 African Express Rifle

CowboyCS

Well-known member
I am including the links under each pic because Photobucket seems to be having major issues lately with pics showing on forums but the direct links seem to work all the time.

This is a project I've been working on for a couple years now, I don't get a lot of time to play with my own ideas since I am backlogged with customers orders. A few hours here and there every so often and I finally finished it up this week and managed to get it out to my pasture, I mean my Range to work on some load development.

The idea I had for this was to build a bullet gun that would be hard hitting enough for big African Plains game and maybe even Cape Buffalo. The bullet idea is nothing new, it's just a variation of a Whitworth style bullet were the rifling and bullet are a matched set. I ordered the barrel blank with a 1:24 twist and a couple extra inches longer than I needed so that I could make a rifling/swaging die.

The specs:
Action is a E. Wesson Style Boxlock(casting by Pete Allan)
Barrel .500" bore, .512" Groove, 1:24" twist, 28" long Octagon to tapered round(with wedding band transition)
Stock English Walnut
All Iron Furniture
NECG Multi-leaf Rear Sight on a Quarterrib
Silver Caterpillar Front Sight on Ramp
Weight 10 pounds and a few ounces
Leaf and Vine Engraving on the action and trigger guard
Oil Finished wood
Patina'ed rust blued metal finish

Left Side

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0002.jpg

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0005.jpg

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0036.jpg
Right Side

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0016.jpg

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0018.jpg
Quarterib and Rear Sight

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0010.jpg

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0038.jpg
Front Sight

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0013.jpg

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0040.jpg
Butt Plate

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0014.jpg
Engraving

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0008.jpg

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0023.jpg

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0026.jpg

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0028.jpg
Rifling/Swaging Die

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0047.jpg

And the best target of the day:
6 shots

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0049.jpg
500gr bullet
150grs FFFg Goex
#11 CCI cap
ten string average of 1532FPS

I tried a bunch of other bullets and loads also:

http://i269.photobucket.com/albums/jj75/cstolzer338/Wesson 500 African Express/Finished Pictures/IMG_0044.jpg
From left to right
.458-500 Woodleigh
.515-450 wheel weight cast, lubed and pre-rifled
.515-500 wheel weight cast, lubed and pre-rifled
.452-230 cast speer
.452-185 Remington JHP
.458-500 wheel weight cast
With the .452 and .458 I used Hornady Sabots.

Running the 150gr FFFg loads with .452" 185JHP's I was getting 2074FPS and still holding under 2" groups. Not the best accuracy but certainly minute of whitetail and 2000+ FPS with that bullet should be devastating on small and medium game.

I wish I could have got the Woodleighs up to the 1700fps minimum that is recommend but it just won't quite do it.

It should make a very versatile rifle for Africa or anywhere else for that matter.

After I am done experimenting with various bullets and powders I will probably put this one up for sale and build myself another one with a few slight changes.

Colin
 

BelchFire

I speak fluent Vise-Grip
Admin
What kind of range was that 6-shot target? That's some impressive shooting and some stellar work. Sweet rifle, cowboy!
 


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