I got my new Daystate Wolverine earlier in the week, and with a busy schedule it had to sit for a day or two before I could get it sighted in. I’d had one of the first Wolverines that came into the country to use for a couple hunts, and some range work and plinking in between. I really liked the rifle and had a lot of success shooting long range jack rabbits with it. I liked almost everything about the gun, it has a beautiful and ergonomic stock, it was accurate, a nice trigger, and I liked the concept of the .303 caliber gun shooting a range limited projectile. My only two complaints is that it’s a fairly large package, but this is not a big deal on a larger caliber gun and it balances so well that it doesn’t feel it’s size/weight. A bigger issue for me was that the gun was loud, and as I was looking for a suburban hunting gun (which I the reason I like the reduced BC on the Diabolo pellets). I heard at the Extreme Bench Rest competition that the new guns would incorporate he Huggett suppression system, so based on that experience and faith in the Huggett enhancement, I placed my order.
When the Wolverine arrived, the gun was in the box unshrouded, with the shroud nestled into a padded slot next to it. I cleaned the gun, mounted the shroud, and filled it to 25o BAR, then let it sit for a couple days to make sure it was holding pressure….. which it did. I then mounted a Hawke 3-9X40 scope using BKL medium profile rings. This scope has excellent quality glass, and I think the perfect magnification options for this particular gun. Additionally it is compact and light, and fits the rifle well keeping the weight down.
One of the things I was interested in was how effective the Huggett suppressor was in quieting the gun down. I’d fired a couple shots out the back door when I’d first filled the gun, and was really impressed by just how quiet the rifle was. I thought is sounded quieter than some of my other shrouded standard bore pcps, and was obviously an order of magnitude quieter than the original gun. I have a sound meter application on my iPad, and set it on a table next to me, loaded and cocked my Benjamin Marauder .25, Daystate Huntsman Classic .22, and Wolverine then fired one shot with each gun. In the attached screen capture you see the waveform amplitude from all three guns followed by two handclaps as a point of reference. The sounds appeared to be about the same loudness, but were different. When I look at the waveforms, it appears that the Wolverine is a bit louder than either of the other moderated guns but peaks later and is sustained a little longer.
One of the reasons that I’m hung up on the sound level produced by this gun is that I really want to use it to do some urban hunting and on some smaller properties. I think the performance characteristics of the .303 pellets are the perfect fit, but if the bark noted with the original unshrouded gun isn’t substantially reduced, it won’t fulfill my requirement. I was very pleased with the results, the gun was about as loud as many standard caliber/power pcp’s….. I love the fact that it’s a backyard friendly mid bore that I can get a lot of practice in with.
I had laser sighted the gun and when I got out in the field, set a target at 75 yards and shot a few groups off my gorilla sticks while sitting in the snow. I was getting groups slightly larger than a quarter, which suited my purpose just fine. I wasn’t bench testing the gun, just making sure that if I called a coyote into 75 yards I could drop him with a headshot. I bought ten tins of pellets with the gun, and am trying to get some hunting time in with the Wolverine before taking it with me to Texas in a couple weeks. Sometime before then I’ll get out for a serious range session and get chrony measurements and shoot some benchrested groups printed.
As I mentioned in the last couple blog entries, I’m just moving into Minnesota, and have been looking for new spots to hunt. I’ve driven out to two big farms and a big private bird hunting club to see if they’d let me hunt predators on their property …… all three said sure, just call and let us know when you’ll be on the property! If everybody is this cool about it, I could be looking at virtually unlimited coyote hunting close to home in my future!!
I went out tonight and started hiking one of the new areas, hiking a trail I’d marked using Google maps. Saw lots of deer, a scattering of pheasant, and coyote tracks were fairly thick. I realized on the drive out that I hadn’t bought my hunting license yet, and rather than returning to but one decided to make this a pure scouting trip, and for that reason choose not to call (no reason to educate the dogs just to satisfy my curiosity). But I’ll be back out this week with calls, lamps……. and of course, the Wolverine.