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Thread: A tale of two extremes

  1. #1

    A tale of two extremes

    I have been shooting deer with a 6.5 Lapua for some years now. It's a great round but the results are inconsistent. The deer always die, but sometimes they run, sometimes they drop on the spot. There seems to be no relationship to awareness, species, terminal velocity, shot placement - perhaps there is no answer, but I fancied trying a couple of extremes to see if I could get some sort of consistency.

    The Lapua shoots a Nosler 120BT at 2950fps. All pretty middle of the road.

    So I now have two new rifles in the cupboard. A .308 and a 280AI.

    The .308 is a stumpy. 16" barrel, shooting a 168grain AMax at 2500fps. The slow and heavy theory. A lot of thought went into the choice of the Amax. I know it's frowned upon for shooting deer with, but when your terminal velocity is going to be 2300fps to 2400fps you need a bullet that is going to expand reliably. That velocity window is reputed to be the sweet spot for the Amax, hence the selection.

    The 280AI is loaded up with a 120 grain Barnes TTSX running at 3400fps. Again, a lot of head scratching over bullet selection but if you are going to launch a 120 grain bullet at that pace and are likely to get TV's over 3200fps your choices get very limited.

    I have worked up loads for both rifles in the last couple of weekends and both are shooting 0.5 MOA. Next step is to get out into the field and see what happens! Might take some time to reach a conclusion, if I ever manage to do so, but it's going to be very interesting finding out.

    Will also be interesting to see how the Barnes is for meat damage. Bullets going that quickly usually cause a great deal of damage in my experience, but I have been using 70 to 85 grain bullets in 6mm running at 3300 to 3500fps in the past. Will be interesting to see how different the Barnes is due to the very different construction.

    I have a good plan B for both rifles if the experiment doesn't work for any reason or proves a point and rules one out for deer. Stumpy will be a great Boar rifle loaded up with 180 Partitions and the 280AI will end up shooting 140 Accubonds.
    So much to learn and so little time left

  2. #2
    Subscribed to this post, looking forward to the results in real life experience
    :-)

    Paul

  3. #3

  4. #4
    Did you get anywhere with the survey you started a while ago which was exploring similar issues?

  5. #5
    I would expect the 308 with 168n bullet to knock the deer off their feet and then they will kick for 30 to 40 seconds before expiring. Heart and lungs will be nicely shredded and well bled out.

    the 280 AI with 120 gn bullet will cause the deer to run for a few or even 10 seconds covering a bit of ground in the meantime. The heart / lungs will be mush and a lot of bloodshot meat.

  6. #6
    I would recommend that you watch the video by Dr Kevin Robertson which is called "Perfect Shot" (based upon the book by the same name). He explains that when the heart is full of blood it will explode, when the chamber is empty the bullet makes a hole through it and the animal bleeds out, he then goes onto to demonstrate the principle, which explains why some heart shot animals run and others drop.

    I run a 6.5x47 using 140 amax and the expand beautifully and deer which are chest shot tend to go down either instantly or very quickly. The barnes bullets only fail if they are run too slow, at the velocity that you are stating they should peel all the way back, meat damage will be minimal.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by McKenzie View Post
    Did you get anywhere with the survey you started a while ago which was exploring similar issues?
    Only had one set of data returned to me, so no real sample to go at yet. If anyone has some to send please do so.
    So much to learn and so little time left

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by 1894 View Post
    What sample size?
    I shoot about 50 a year, so in a couple of years I should have 100 to go on. They will not all be heart shot, but I will make an effort to focus on that shot placement. Not a massive sample, but I tried getting data from others some months ago and have not had very much back so decided to give it a go myself. I'm not looking to try to prove anything to anyone other than myself, but a few people might be interested in the findings, even if it goes on to prove nothing.
    So much to learn and so little time left

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Cumbrian 1 View Post
    I would recommend that you watch the video by Dr Kevin Robertson which is called "Perfect Shot" (based upon the book by the same name). He explains that when the heart is full of blood it will explode, when the chamber is empty the bullet makes a hole through it and the animal bleeds out, he then goes onto to demonstrate the principle, which explains why some heart shot animals run and others drop.

    I run a 6.5x47 using 140 amax and the expand beautifully and deer which are chest shot tend to go down either instantly or very quickly. The barnes bullets only fail if they are run too slow, at the velocity that you are stating they should peel all the way back, meat damage will be minimal.
    Now that's very interesting. How the hell can you prove that one? Understand the principle.

    That was my theory on the Barnes hence the selection.
    So much to learn and so little time left

  10. #10
    don't you think the psychological status of the deer makes the most difference with regard to how far they run etc.
    so if a deer is spooked and you heart shoot it it will run further than one that is feeding and heart shot for example.

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