Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 19

Thread: Slow and Heavy Bullet Choice

  1. #1

    Slow and Heavy Bullet Choice

    A little knowledge is a dangerous thing so I was hoping someone could straighten me out on something I have only half understood.

    Is it right that when considering slow-moderate velocity, heavy cartridges such as 6.5x55 and 9.3x62, standard soft points are usually preferable to premium, bonded bullets? As I (sort of) understand it this is because the lower velocities make it unlikely that a premium bullet will expand, while the high sectional density means that poor penetration is unlikely to be a problem with a standard soft points.

    Is this correct? If so does this apply to all game or just thin skinned big game?

  2. #2
    I have always but the bullet choice to the game, not the velocity. Even 2000 fps has the ability to drive a 220 grain, 30 caliber solid through the greater length of an Elk. I believe that most hunting rifles have enough energy to cause a bullet to expand provided it meets enough resistance.

    I had these thoughts this morning as I was forming some 9.3x57 brass and loading up a few dummy cartridges with the PRVI 286 grain lead tipped SP bullets. My intended targets are deer but I feel that any deer raked through it's pulmonary system with this -or any- bullet is going to die. Also, there is no arguing that the .366" bullet will punch a large enough hole so that even if it were a solid, the holes in and out would be something a 243 shooter would respect.~Muir

  3. #3
    A slow, heavy bullet has a loopy trajectory and is therefore better suited for use at shorter ranges.
    Due to lack of velocity both expansion and penetration will suffer at longer ranges.
    My first stalking rifle in 1961 was a Merkel, DB, O/U, 7X65R which was regulated to fire the 11.2 gramm or 173gr RWS softpoint-roundnose bullet.
    I shot Chamois at 200 metres and Reds at similar distances with no problems but as with all my quarry species I try to get much nearer if possible.
    We should attempt to be close-range stalkers and not long-range snipers who `chuck it and chance it`.
    As with all rifles correct shot placement is more important than calibre or type of bullet used.

    HWH.
    Last edited by stag1933; 20-02-2011 at 18:37. Reason: `calibre` was spelt wrongly.

  4. #4
    Shot placement is everything. I knew a hermit who hunted whitetails with using a 30-06 Springfield loaded with surplus 173 grain FMJ bullets, loaded over surplus powders. He always killed his deer quickly because he could place a shot with cold precision. ~Muir

  5. #5
    The advice I have read is that anything under 3000fps does not require a premium bullet, precisely because of what Stag1933 said- the lower velocity causes issues with expansion. If this is indeed the case then am I right in thinking that as Muir suggests matching the bullet weight to the game is the way forward? If so does that in turn suggest that in an ideal world different bullet weights should be used on different deer according to their size (this being an ideal world of unlimited funds and never changing zeroes)?

  6. #6
    Liam, if you read the reloading manuals they give the recommended fps range for each of their bullets. The Hornady premium bullets like the .308 interbond in 165gn have a range of 2,200-3,400 fps, so they will work from quite slow speeds. Like most information about reloading and ballistics, it is hard to generalise.

    I use the 129gn SST's in my 6.5 and their range is 1,500-3,200 fps.

    Simon.

    Edit; I would think it unwise to expect a cheap softpoint to expand as well at very high speeds as it does at normal velocities, but I would expect a premium bullet to work well at all speeds that the manufacturers recommend.
    Last edited by flytie; 26-02-2011 at 10:38. Reason: non linear thought process (stupidity)
    Blindness to suffering is an inherent consequence of natural selection. Nature is neither kind nor cruel but fiercely indifferent.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by flytie View Post
    Liam, if you read the reloading manuals they give the recommended fps range for each of their bullets. The Hornady premium bullets like the .308 interbond in 165gn have a range of 2,200-3,400 fps, so they will work from quite slow speeds. Like most information about reloading and ballistics, it is hard to generalise.

    I use the 129gn SST's in my 6.5 and their range is 1,500-3,200 fps.

    Simon.

    Edit; I would think it unwise to expect a cheap softpoint to expand as well at very high speeds as it does at normal velocities, but I would expect a premium bullet to work well at all speeds that the manufacturers recommend.
    Thanks Simon, I have done some digging on t'internet (I do not yet own any manuals) and I see what you mean about the manufacturer's recommendations. So do you use the 129gn SSTs on all sizes of deer? I was looking at the 155gn Lapua Mega as my rifle seems to like these heavier bullets and I have seen it recommended for roe and for moose, but I cannot get my head around how one bullet can work well on game of such wildly different sizes.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by liamnjs View Post
    Thanks Simon, I have done some digging on t'internet (I do not yet own any manuals) and I see what you mean about the manufacturer's recommendations. So do you use the 129gn SSTs on all sizes of deer? I was looking at the 155gn Lapua Mega as my rifle seems to like these heavier bullets and I have seen it recommended for roe and for moose, but I cannot get my head around how one bullet can work well on game of such wildly different sizes.

    Liam, I shoot mainly fallow, a few roe and a very small proportion of muntjac and quite happily use 129gn SST's on all of them. I know one friend of mine in Scotland uses his 6.5 with 120gn BT's to great effect on red deer, and he shoots more than a few in a year, in fact far more in a year than I have ever shot. And they do punch through the red deer and leave a good exit hole.

    I have been given some 140gn soft-points which I will try again, although I used to use Federal Powershok to good effect so there should be little difference. I have some Barnes TSX 130gn which I will try too (just in case they do ban lead). I bought some Sierra 100gn Varminters which produce ragged bug-holes at 100yds. The largest bullets I have used were Norma Oryx 156gn, they produced good groups too. But, and it's a big but, I am going to try 120gn BT's and sod what all the nay sayers and doom mongers say about them!

    Simon
    Blindness to suffering is an inherent consequence of natural selection. Nature is neither kind nor cruel but fiercely indifferent.

  9. #9
    I now use Hornady 180gr sst's through my .308 running at approx 2450 fps ,so they are in no hurry to get there , but anything I hit stays hit . Very little carcass damage , most of my shots are sub 150m so trajectory isn't an issue for me.
    Brough

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Brough View Post
    ......, but anything I hit stays hit . ......
    Brough
    It would be almost phenominal if that was NOT the case

Similar Threads

  1. Slow, non fragmenting bullet?
    By david1976 in forum Ammunition, Reloading & Ballistics
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 04-06-2010, 09:05
  2. Incredible- slow- motion-bullet-video
    By StalkingKent in forum Ammunition, Reloading & Ballistics
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 11-05-2010, 08:02
  3. Slow Motion video of bullet impacts
    By ash243 in forum Deer Stalking General
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-10-2009, 19:38
  4. Bullet choice
    By Stuart in forum Diseases, Welfare and Biology
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 03-07-2009, 23:20
  5. Bullet choice
    By stuartp in forum Ammunition, Reloading & Ballistics
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 02-03-2007, 16:37

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •