Olympic Arms "Whitney Wolverine" - junk?


May 28, 2008, 05:27 AM
I've heard mixed reviews on the "new" Wolverine pistol, seen here (http://www.olyarms.com/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=shop.flypage&product_id=135&category_id=10&manufacturer_id=0&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=37), but not really much here on THR. Does anyone own one? Was it worth the money - and what did you pay? MSRP is just shy of $300.

I really like the looks, and if they didn't change the grip from the old ones, I really liked how it felt and pointed.

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May 28, 2008, 08:03 PM
The fact it seems no one owns this new gun is unsettling... did it get bad reviews in gun rags or something?

May 28, 2008, 10:48 PM
Other than the "What's New" section, I've not seen anybody review these in the gun rags. I've seen one of these in person. It looks pretty cheap to me. I don't know if the dealer who had it actually sold it (these was about a year ago and I see the dealer regularly - it might be telling that it's gone and he hasn't gotten another).

May 28, 2008, 10:55 PM
First I've heard about them. So they look like the originals? Are they made in China?

May 28, 2008, 11:58 PM
I've only seen two: one at a local shop and one at a show. Both were tagged at about the same as the "street price" of a new Ruger Mk.III. IMO, the one that I examined closely was at least as well-finished as the original Wolverines. The action worked smoothly enough and the trigger was so-so. The MSRP is probably what's doing the most to kill it off - again.

May 29, 2008, 01:06 AM
Well, I've made up my mind. Since I was a little kid I've wanted a Wolverine, and I've not found an original. Everything I've heard about other OlyArms products has been fairly positive. Looks like I'll be the guinea pig.

May 29, 2008, 01:30 AM
I bought one about two years ago after examining them at the NRA exhibits. Sort of liked the originals but never got one, and this seemed decent.

The quality and execution is generally okay, but functioning has never been very good. With the ammo I use in my other semiauto .22 pistols I regularly get a couple of misfeeds every magazine. They recommend CCI Stingers which worked a little better but still were unreliable--and a little pricey for plinking.

Early on I called Oly's service number, but got a rather clueless and disinterested response. My request for a follow-up call from the regular service person went ignored. Obviously they don't care too much once you've bought it. :confused:

Every now and then I break it out to see if it will work any better, but it doesn't. The originals may have been superior to these.

From my experience the Oly Wolverine is a "curio and a relic", a conversation piece and paperweight. if you want a gun to shoot, do what I did those many years ago and get a Ruger instead. :rolleyes:

May 29, 2008, 03:57 AM
I regularly use CCI MiniMags in my .22 autoloaders, but if even those won't cycle a Wolverine reliably... Geeze.

Maybe I won't get one afterall.

May 29, 2008, 07:09 PM
It has been one of those holy grail guns for me. I saw the new one when they first came out. Looked good with a poly. frame. ONE mag. Mags were hard to come by so I passed. The store owner finally sold it after many months and never heard back from the buyer.

May 30, 2008, 12:11 AM
I bought one of these about a year and half ago. I wouldn't make the same mistake again. I eventually managed to make the gun work somewhat reliably (no more than 1 or 2 malfunctions every hundred rounds) with Wal-mart Federal bulk hollowpoints-and none of the other six brands of .22 I tried would manage to function without at least failure per magazine.

It also didn't have any consistent single method of failing to function; it would have failures to extract, feed, and light primer strikes- sometimes it would malfunction 6 or 7 times per magazine. I attribute this to the gun being cheaply manufactured, and poorly fitted, and I suspect that if you get one, it will need to be sent back to the factory or a competent gunsmith at least once.

May 30, 2008, 04:58 PM
I've seen one at the local range,. The guy had several types of .22 lr but none of them were stingers or mini mag as I recall. The Wolv was consistently not ammo sensitive as it jammed on every magazine with all of the available rounds.

June 2, 2008, 10:37 AM
That's too bad that folks seem to have problems with them. I recently bought an original Wolverine and it's magnificent. It hadn't been shot in decades and the first mag had 3 jams. A few drops of lube and it's been flawless ever since. I would've liked to get a new one because I like the pointability and don't want to wear the original out too much but, with all of the complaints, I'll have to pass. A whitney rep said that all of the parts except the barrel nut and the rear sight are interchangeable with the originals. If that's the case, all of these problems must be due to lax fit and manufacturing standards. 'Tis a shame.

June 2, 2008, 01:43 PM
The last gun show that I went to had the people from Olympic Arms there with all their wares, including several copies of the latest Wolverine (price just under $300), but after hefting one, I have to admit it felt flimsy.

At another table was one of the original Whitney Wolverine pistols, and the fellow had a price tag (almost typed toe tag) of $450. The original had a nice heft to it, but not quite on target for me.

I post this for reference.

June 2, 2008, 04:50 PM
I was at a gunshow yesterday and one of the dealers had an original Wolverine. Yep, $450. I'm in Western Washington. It might have been the same pistol Cliff47 saw.
I looked at it real hard, but ended up leaving with a new Springfield Champion 45 and a S&W Model 19-2 (1961-1966) Unfired in the original box with papers and sight adjusting screwdriver. :D


July 21, 2008, 11:12 AM
I have an orginal Whitney Wolverine including the original box it came in. I am curious to know how much it's worth. Other than being packed away for the last 40 years, the gun is practically new.

July 21, 2008, 12:30 PM
The most honest answer I give you is to put it up for auction and see what it brings.

IMO, the only measure of what anything is really worth is how much you can get someone to offer you for it on any given day.

There are various books that will tell you what in the opinion of the authors something ought to be worth to other people.

As those estimates have varied so widely, IME, both from each other and the amounts that I've seen people actually demonstrate that they're willing to pay for those items that I have come to be very skeptical about their validity.

Your best sources of factual estimate information, IMO, are a reputable firearms speciality auction house's appraisal and/or searches of the databases on a couple of the online firearms auction sites to see what similar offerings have actually been sold for recently.

Next would be from the members of a specialized collectors site or association. The caveat here, IMO, is that if the item is greatly desirable in their niche of interest you're likely to get lowballs from opportunists looking to score a bragging-sized bargain instead of a real estimate.

Hope this helps you sort it out. Good luck!

November 14, 2008, 06:48 PM
I recently ordered a Whitney Wolverine from a local gun shop. They did not have a gun in stock, so they ordered it from the distributor who ordered it from Olympic Arms. When I received the firearm I took it to the range for test firing. It would not chamber ammo or fire! It was completely non functioning! The dealer and distributor were not interested in providing customer service. After weeks of e-mails and phone calls a manager at Olympic Arms made it quite clear that they would not stand behind their customer satisfaction claims in their own manual. My experience and the actions of Olympic Arms is that their products are junk and their customer service is a joke. Quality Assurance is not assuring and I have no confidence in the company nor the products.

Vaughan Pederson
Houston, Texas

April 9, 2009, 02:21 PM
I'm sorry that you had that experience, in my case it was a very different experience, I just came from the range today with the "new" Whitney Wolverine that I just purchase 3 weeks ago and I have to tell you, the feel of the pistol (ergonomics) it is a very comfortable fit (for me at least) it just feel natural and the balance is great, the ammo used was a CCI Mini-Mag 22LR round nose (0030) and I did not have any issues and also I tried the Eley Sport and kept jamming (don't use that), Olympics Arms does not recommend using "inexpensive" ammo. I fired today 100 rounds and the pistol is very accurate (1 to 2 inches clusters) at 25 feet, now in my experience do not load the full magazine (10 rounds) because I had some jamming, I load 8 round and it was perfect, also at the beginning (when I just got the pistol) I had a little issue with the safety and I called Olympic Arms and they were very courteous and helpful they ask me to send the pistol and they will fixed for free (Lifetime Warranty) but after that reading again the manual and playing a little I realize it was a "user" error and there was nothing to be fixed, so far I fired over 500 round and I really like this pistol and I would definitely recommended, by the way if you are going to disassemble to clean it use a light color towel or any cloth underneath because some (like 2 or 3) little pieces will come out flying and it is going to be difficult to find later on, overall (in my experience) this is a nice pistol and it's and excellent plinker.

April 14, 2009, 11:13 PM
Well I have 2 of the orginal wolverines-one is black and the other the very rare silver anodized model. I have shot both of these many times and never have I had any trouble feeding with any brand of ammo if I use round nose LR .22's. These pistols just seem to fit in your hand perfectly and point themselves. I wouldn't trade mine for anything. If I found another at a gun show in good shape I would buy it at any reasonable price as I like them that much and so do my shooting buddies who would like me to sell them one.
One of the Olympic arms chiefs engeniers traded my brother in law a new desert eagle for an his orginal MINT wolverine at a gun show here in western washington in the early 80's and told him they planed to reverse engenier this pistol and manufacture it again..The Desert eagle is one of the pistols they manufacture so it was no big deal in this trade for olynpic arms.
I don't know about the new models but I sure like the orginals. When they first came out they were touted as the fastest semi-auto .22 on the market at that time (around 1957-or 58).

April 15, 2009, 11:24 AM
I picked up an original a couple of months back in superb condition, which has sparked my interest in getting the remake, just for comparison's sake. But darned if I can easily get my hands on one. A couple are advertised on GunsAmerica, but I like dealing locally and my FFL guy has yet to locate one. Despite the so-so reviews, I want to add it to the fold ... just to complete the Wolverine collection from old to new.

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