The .25-35 Winchester

By Chuck Hawks

The .25-35 Winchester was introduced in 1895 for the Model 1894 Winchester rifle. It was one of the famous Winchester trio of high velocity, smokeless powder hunting cartridges. Along with the .30-30 Winchester and .32 Winchester Special, the .25-35 helped revolutionize North American hunting and usher in the modern era of high velocity, small bore rifle cartridges.

The traditional ballistics of the .25-35 Winchester called for a 117 grain flat point bullet at a muzzle velocity (MV) of 2300 fps and muzzle energy (ME) of 1375 ft. lbs. At 100 yards the numbers were 1910 fps and 945 ft. lbs. The mid-range trajectory over 200 yards was a reasonable 4.6 inches. This may not sound impressive today, but at the time it was regarded as quite adequate for deer and pronghorn antelope--and in fact it still is.

According to the Hornady Handbook, Third Edition reloaders can duplicate the original 2300 fps load with Hornady's 117 grain Round Nose bullet in front of 25.7 grains of IMR 3031 powder or 28.1 grains of IMR 4320 powder. Hornady describes this as, ". . . a very deadly game bullet which will not only buck the brush well but will expand easily even at low remaining velocities." Hornady ballistic figures show that at 100 yards this bullet is traveling at 1965 fps and retains 1003 ft. lbs. of energy. At 200 yards the velocity is still 1668 fps and the energy 723 ft. lbs.

Note: The complete article about the .25-35 Winchester can be found in its entirety on the Rifle Cartridge Page.

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Copyright 2004, 2012 by Chuck Hawks. All rights reserved.