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The Truth About High Velocity Hunting Bullets

Rifles Nov 09 Tortoise and Hare:
Photo by Tim Bower

Back in 1915, firearms designer Arthur Savage stood the shooting world on its nonfunctioning ear by introducing a cartridge that sped an 87-grain bullet on its way at the then galactic speed of 3000 fps. Called the .250/3000, it appeared in an era when the .30/30 was considered a red-hot round, and it marked the start of a craze from which we have not yet recovered. With every decade cartridges get bigger and muzzle velocities get higher. Maybe it’s time to ask why.

Sudden Death Shortly after the .250/3000 appeared, stories began to sprout in the pages of outdoor magazines about the unearthly killing power of the little cartridge. A World War I–era Field & Stream described it as sudden death on tigers and other large Indian game. You can kill a tiger with a .250/3000, or with a .22 Long Rifle (and I will come and visit you in prison), but it is a stunt. High velocity by itself does not kill anything, nor does it kill anything faster than standard velocity.

I started out believing devoutly in lots of speed, but 40 years later, having shot creatures of all sizes with just about everything that goes bang, I’ve never been able to find any correlation between bullet speed and sudden animal demise.

For 15 years I hunted whitetails in South Carolina, where you can shoot lots and lots of deer, so I had the ability to draw some valid comparisons. The smallest cartridge I used was the .257 Roberts; in other years I used the .270 Winchester, .257 Weatherby, and 7mm Weatherby. None of them killed anything any faster or deader than any other cartridge.

Same with the .338, .340 Weatherby, and .338 Remington Ultra Mag., all of which I have used a lot. The latter two give anywhere from 250 to 300 fps more than the former, which is a bunch, but the beasts do not go down any quicker.

Magnum Force Not only do super-speed cartridges not kill any faster, but there are distinct disadvantages to them as well. First, let’s consider recoil and muzzle blast. Most of my .338 loads use around 70 grains of powder with 225-grain bullets. This gives me around 2750 fps. My .338 Remington Ultra Mag., with the same bullets, swallows an appalling 93 grains and produces 300 fps more. In a 9-pound rifle, a .338 so loaded produces about 28 foot-pounds of recoil, which is tolerable only to experienced shooters and the criminally insane. The RUM churns out 40 foot-pounds, which leaves you feeling as if you’ve gone five rounds in the Octagon with Chuck (“The Iceman”) Liddell. Muzzle blast also rises proportionately. You can, of course, get a muzzle brake, but that presents its own set of problems.

Second, when you get bullets traveling at 3000 fps and over—these days, way over—even the strongest and slowest-expanding of them makes a mess of whatever it hits unless the shot is long enough to let some of the velocity drain off. If you are a trophy hunter and don’t mind an acre or so of hamburger around the entrance hole, this is not an objection. But if you like wild meat and are disturbed by the waste of same, it is a problem.

Third, barrel life for the super-speed cartridges is considerably shorter than it is for standard-velocity loads. A well-cared-for .30/06 (60 grains of powder per cartridge) will give you about 5,000 rounds of first-class accuracy. Any of the super .30s (80 grains of powder) will get perhaps 1,500 before they start to deteriorate—and the cost of a good barrel, installed, is now about $600.

Why Bother? Given all these drawbacks, why is it that high velocity keeps getting higher, and new and horrific super loads keep appearing? Because nothing makes hitting at long range easier than a good dose of feet per second. If you think you will need to take a shot at 300 yards and over, high velocity is your very best friend. Last winter, I asked Ed Brown and Mark Bansner, makers of top-level custom rifles, what their most popular chambering was. Both replied that it was the .300 Weatherby. Kenny Jarrett’s biggest seller for years has been the .300 Jarrett, a ravening beast of a cartridge, the bullets of which turn the air fuchsia where they pass. These men build guns for trophy hunters who expect to take long shots as a matter of course, and in that arena, speed is king.

In fact, if there is such a thing as the No. 1 high-velocity cartridge, it would be any of the big .30s: the Weatherby, the .300 RUM, the .300 Jarrett, or the Lazzeroni Warbird. Loaded with streamlined 180- or 200-grain bullets, these cartridges are not even getting unlimbered at 300 yards.

However, speed alone will not solve all your problems in hitting at long range. You also need resistance to wind drift and momentum, or the ability to sustain velocity way out there. The way you get it is by going not to light bullets that give the highest initial velocity—but to the heavier slugs in a given caliber, and to bullets that are streamlined.

For example, if you have a 7mm magnum, you want 160-grain bullets in preference to 140- or 150-grain, and if your rifle is one of the real 7mm monsters, you may find that 175-grainers are the way to go. In .30 caliber, you should look for nothing lighter than 180-grain, and so on. As for bullets, you want sharp points (preferably polycarbonate) and boattails, both of which increase the ballistic coefficient of a slug. For example, much as I love Swift A-Frames, they are not particularly aerodynamic, and I would prefer Swift Sciroccos if long range were in the equation.

The truth about high velocity is that it is a mixed blessing. But when your target is a dot in the distance, it is the deadliest thing since the cholera.

 

PETZAL'S RULES OF THE RANGE: AN UNTROUBLED MIND
Recently, I pulled targets for a women-only rifle match, shot prone at 100 yards with .22s. One of the two perfect scores turned in—a 100x4X—was shot by a competitor who had never fired a rifle before. She went into the contest with nothing to prove, no reputation to uphold, no preconceptions, and simply did what she was told, no more and no less. We can all benefit by her example.—D.E.P.

Comments (65)

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from T.W. Davidson wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Excellent article, Mr. P.

These days my favorite rifle is a 7x57 Mauser, though I have other rifles that will shoot much faster. True, I handload my 7x57 to shoot 120, 130 and 140 grain bullets at velocities that match healthy handloads for the 7mm-08--an easy and safe thing to do in a strong, modern rifle--but that's as far as I go, and my 7x57 is at least as much gun as I need for 99.8% of the centerfire rifle shooting (and very limited hunting)I do. With my Mauser, and with handloads I've developed for my rifle (a Model 70 Featherweight which has been tweaked and loved by a P.O. Ackley-trained gunsmith), I feel comfortable taking shots out to 300 yards, or maybe just a touch farther under optimal conditions. I'm not comfortable taking a shot on a game animal at more than 350-400 yards with any rifle in any caliber even though I'm a good shot, I handload and chronograph and test my own ammo, and I practice as often as I can.

Incidentally, although my eyes are not quite at the same super-vision power and acuity level they once were, I believe I can actually see factory load 7x57 Mauser rounds going down range after I shoot them, from about 30 yards out and then onwards. (The bullet drop difference even at 100 yards between any of the standard factory loads is significant compared to my handloads in any bullet weight.) Years ago I could routinely see 9mm Parabellum and .45 auto bullets going down range when I was in the service or when I was at the pistol range in the years that followed. I admit I am mystified as to how any person can see a rifle bullet going 2600 fps or faster going down range.

Do you (or any who read this blog) ever see your bullets going down range?

TWD

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from Brian W. Thair wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

We had an indoor range with 10 places. If I shot from #8 with only the spotlights on the targets, I could see a .45 coming from #1 out of the corner of my eye. A gray stripe about a foot long, just in front of the target. Hard to remember but not more than 800-900fps (range regulation).

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from Brian Jackson wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

I've seen .22LR when doing target shooting at long distance (for a .22). Shooting with my neighbor's tricked out target rifle and a 20+X scope you can see the .22 impacting the target. According to Winchester ballistic tables that's right around 1000fps at 100 yds.

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from WhitetailHunter706 wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

thats a preety good article tells you bout everything you need to know or care to know

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from JASmith wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

Excellent discussion!

As likely everyone is aware, there's a growing community that believe the .223 Remington is the cat's meow for deer. Furthermore, there's not much discussion of differences in size of deer.

I think your comments on the use of the .223 for deer and other comparable sized game would be welcome to the larger community!

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from jamesabrt wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

I have an aquaintance who has managed to put together a long-range rifle that's pretty amazing, to me at least.
It's a .338 ultra-mag. He started out with a standard 798 Remington receiver and from there it really took off. The barrel is ported and the overall length from the buttplate to the brake is 49 and 1/2 inches. He added a NightForce NX25 42x56 scope, and the program for the scope will run on his cell phone, computing adjustments for distance, elevation,windage and curvature of the earth. He finished it off with a McMillan custom stock and this beast should still be super-sonic at one and a half to two miles. That's over 1,125 fps at that distance.
Since I'm still sort of Old-school and like to hunt with iron sights, it's hard for me to get my mind around a weapon such as this. I have photos and believe me, it's truly a work of art.
From Mr. Petzals article, I can only imagine the recoil, even with the most advanced recoil pad. It must be like pulling both triggers on a double 10 gauge, and I know from experience and accident, THAT HURTS.
STAY SAFE: James

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from Jag2u612 wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

It would be nice for once to hear a salient discussion about current events in bullit fragmentation and the damage and potential lead poisoning happening to deer and any other game animals shot by high velocity lead bullits. Who cares about another my guns bigger than your gun discussion when there are real health issue going on with lead conatamination in game meat. The Minnesota DNR tested rifle bullits along with slugs on the carcass's of sheep (considered similar) and road kill deer to check on the lead spread as it were. They found it upwards of 18 inches from the impact shot and could not be completely sure it would not travel farther due to the limitations on the x ray machine and the sizes of the animals being used.

How many of us have ever taken a shot at some big game animal over 300 yards? Less than 2% I would imagine. I have land around 200 acres that alone probably puts me in a smaller sub category. I have a few shots on my land at or beyond 300 yards and you know what? I don't take them period! Two thirds to three quarters of the deer taken in Minnesota where I live are taken at less than 100 yards. About half of those are taken at less than 50 yards!

So less chat about what the cake eaters need, want, or expect from high velocity ammunition and high powered rifles that the average hunter never touches. And more chat about health concerns and reality. Check the Minnesota DRN Web Site for downloadable information on the lead study. http://files.dnr.state.mn.us/fish_wildlife/lead/bulletstudy/resources/sh...

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from udarrell wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

I am loading 100-gr 6mm "bonded bullets," for my .243 Win & for my 243/06 Wildcat, that will help reduce lead fouling of the meat.

The all copper bullets are also a solution.
Wisconsin DNR is speaking to this lead contamination issue on this page>
http://dnr.wi.gov/org/land/wildlife/lead.htm - Darrell

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from fallenleader wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

it's somewhat off topic but what about FMJ rounds? or as above said, copper. and there are some other alternative alloy's?

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from jamesabrt wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

Jag2u612, you have a very good point about the potential of lead poisoning, but lead poisoning isn't confined to high velocity rounds.
It would be a good subject for an article and discussion, but since Mr. Petzals article was about high velocity rounds, I thought that was supposed to be what was commented on, not lead poisoning, or any number of subjects that are important in their own right.
STAY SAFE: James

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from guyandarifle wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

For the sake of another take I'd like to throw this out there for consideration. Deer are not terribly hard to kill, be it with a .223/30-30 or whatever. A well struck deer with any decent round/bullet probably isn't going far. Upshot is you're pretty limited in differentiating one cartridge from another. Now, a .30-30 and a .300 Wby shoot the same caliber bullet. Instead of deer I'm now planning on shooting a grizzly. I have PROFOUNDLY different expectations of the efficacy of the two cartridges for the task at hand and it's got nothing to do with ranging. I'll have no problem with either hitting my target at 100yds but have more than a little interest in terminal impact differences between the two. (and don't even get me started on having to stop a charge) For that matter I'd MUCH prefer my .340 Wby with 275gr A-Frames over the .300, and again it's not a question of long range trajectory.

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from pautof wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

Dave: never saw a person kill a tiger with a .22 LR, but was very impressed by a photo that used to be on the DPMS site, the caption read "This was a one shot kill on a 2100 pound bull buffalo using a DPMS LoPro Classic in .223. Shot by Jesse S____ and pictured by Jim R_____. Shot placement is critical, excellent accuracy by DPMS. Thank you guys for making this day exciting!"

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from Cheap Shot wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

A lot of guys at my gun club shoot moly-coated bullets. When conditions are right they leave a "contrail" of vaporized lube in the air.

A bullet traveling directly away from you (in your line of sight) is easier to see than one viewed from off to the side of the line of fire where your eyes have to "track it" to see it.

I have people who know I shoot and hunt ask me what kind of rifle they should get. If they just want one for general purpose, my answer for years has been a .30-06. Besides it's proven performance as a cartridge, there are TONS of reloading data and components out there. There's even surplus ammo still available. Often their response would be, "Well, what about the 300 Win Mag? or 7mm Mag?" The next time I get that question, I'm going to send them the link to this discussion. Thanks for some great observations!

Jamesabrt, your buddy with the tricked out ultra-mag doesn't have to feel the recoil. Just strap the thing down on sandbags and pull the trigger with a string when the image from the scope lines up with the target - as seen on the cell phone screen. ;-)

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from fisherus wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

This author has quite a few things right on the nose. The true dynamics of the killing power of any rifle is always going to be superceeded by shot placement. I always stress that if you have a gun you can shoot well and know it's limitations, you have the right gun for you. The second part of the killing sequence is measured with a combination of bullet speed, type, and ballistic coefficient.
If you haven't seen a bullet fly out of a gun barrel, shot a .45acp in the air in a safe direction. You can even see the bullet tumble in some instances.

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from fisherus wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

I have always said that shot placement is the number one priorty in being an effective hunter. If you have a firearm that you are comfortable with shooting,shoot it well,and know it's limitations, you have the right firearm for you.
The Author hit the nail right on the head. Speed makes bullets shoot flatter. It takes a combination of speed connected with the ballistic coefficient of the bullet to keep the speed up at long distances. Bullets without the appropriate aerodynamics and ballistic coefficient will not travel as far, just reach shorter yardage targets faster. This comes at a price to the shooter due to barrel burn. As an avid varmint shooter and reloader, I learned that the fastest speed also doesn't make for the best accuracy. Keeping my .22-.250 Remington and .22-.250AI under 3600fps triples my barrel life. Larger calibers such as my custom .300RUM and .338Edge don't see the volume of rounds pumped through them that my varmint rifles do, so I have far less concern with using high velocity to reach long range targets.

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from Gunslinger wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

To each his own: For me, I've hunted the Rockies for yeas,taking Elk, Mlies, W-tails and hundeds of W-tails her at home. I use teh Re, 700 CDl with 24" bbl and the Sciroccos in l80 grs. It has killed all the above. I zero for 200 yds, and last year in MT killed a Animal at 385 yds using the above. Bullet oly dropped 2" from poit of Aim, now thats what I call hittig the spot. I would trust this set up on all NA game other than the Brownie or Griz.And would attemt those providing I had a back up shooter wth a 375 H&H. 553 ys ago when I bought my first 06, I was told I needed Westerns 220 gr round nose for deer???? yep,I bought some and yet have a box or so around. But when the Polymer tip and Boattail hit the market I knew what I wanted. It flies true and flat. Put your cross hairs on the spot you plan to hit and if you hold steady it will hit within 3-4" of that at up to 400 yds I know. I don;t hunt anywher wher ovr 400 yds is needed, in fact with a Nikon 3x9x40 i doubt I could even hold on target beyond that range, without the scope/Bincs it does enable me to make longe shots than her at home where the average shot is 100 yds etc. And teh old 30-30 is yet a good woods gun with open sight, in fact it's a must here where I live with lots of 2nd growth oaks.Do have about 4 fields that can shoot up to about 300 yds if at the furtherest point.But the Gun Mfges and Ammo makes,got to come out with new stuff, so us Idiots will think will guarantee a nice trophy for their wall. No so, pratice,pratice, pratice and right equiptments does that. Ifit ai't broke, leave be.Shoot-um-straight and very often.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

David, I'm surprised you overlooked the 264 Win Mag of its origin and how it met its fate! If and when metallurgy and cartridge components catches up to this fine cartridge it will never get the true honor it deserves!

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

Has anyone ever stood behind a person shooting prone during a High Power Match especially shooting a magnum and watch the shock wave travel down there body to there toes and back up again.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

What Is The Real Truth About High Velocity Hunting Bullets?
It all depends on your geographical location!

I cannot over emphasize the following,

From Clays archives of bookmarks, places, information and things to read,

ken.mcloud said it best! “

So, I think that the superior killing power of larger rounds is largely in our heads.(likely testosterone induced) A flat-shooting round that you can accurately place will produce as many if not more "bang-flop" kills as a heavy caliber round.”

And may I add to this, It all depends on your geographical location!!

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from BeardogRed wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

Thanks for the review!

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

Not only do super-speed cartridges not kill any faster?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrostatic_shock

Hydrostatic shock
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Average time until incapacitation decreases rapidly with pressure wave magnitude as magnitudes approach 500 psi. See: Links between traumatic brain injury and ballistic pressure waves originating in the thoracic cavity and extremities. Brain Injury 21(7): 657–662, 2007.The term hydrostatic shock describes the observation that a penetrating projectile can produce remote wounding and incapacitating effects in living targets, in addition to local effects in tissue caused by direct impact, through a hydraulic effect in liquid-filled tissues.[1][2] There is scientific evidence that hydrostatic shock can produce remote neural damage and produce incapacitation more quickly than blood loss effects.[3] The debate between proponents of bullets that are "light and fast" versus bullets that are "slow and heavy" often refers to this phenomenon.

Human autopsy results have demonstrated brain hemorrhaging from fatal hits to the chest, including cases with handgun bullets.[4] Thirty-three cases of fatal penetrating chest wounds by a single bullet were selected from a much larger set by excluding all other traumatic factors, including past history.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

Take another Rolaids Dave :)

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

When it comes down to the bottom line, I'll stick to the rifle I've had now for 41 years, a 30-06 03-A3 built by my Father so I can shoot with the "BIG DOGS" and boy did I!! So what you shoot a Magnum, I bridged the gap with special loads and skill :)

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from albertahunter wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

Excellent article. Here in Alberta we have a little more space and 300 yard shots are common or you get nothing. I hunt an area several thousand acreas with large open areas. I coached my 12 year old nephew to his first deer couple days ago with 7mm-08 at a rangefinder distance of 285yds. Both shots he fired hit it and one would have been ok but with the lack of snow here I didnt want it to get into the bush. I usually shoot a 30-06 but use a 300WM if I have no buck by last few days. Again, excellent article and can be used in a lot of arguments with speed addicts.

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from GLASSMAN73 wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

Ok lets see...In reguards to seeing the bullet's flying down range is called a VAPOR TRAIL...And whats happening is that the bullets traveling at high velocitys are spliting the air with the nose of the bullet,causing a light refraction anomaly, thus giving you your vapor trail....So what your usually seeing is the billowy cone streaking directly behind the projectile and not really the bullet it self....But it is posible to see the bullet's on slower projectiles if the lighting is right...GLASSMAN73

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from GLASSMAN73 wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

As for the article.This is good stuff, bringing to light what alot of people just can't see.People always want that hot new round runnin 3300fps blowing the shoulders off of some poor deer at 60yrds.Now if your hunting out west or way up north shooting elk or moose at 4 or 500 yrds.YES a nice magnum is in order.But whitetails or antelope even fat mule deer can be easly harvested with a 270 or 3006 out at 4 or 500yrds.As long as you have a good bullet, know your dope and have practiced at those ranges.I use a 3006 with 165gr sst hornady ammo.And i have taken a few white tails out at around 300 yrds with no problem. The bullets were not recoverd.But the bulk of my kills have been less than 100 yrds. And the same with most of the people i have hunted with.I'm out of north eastern virginia where 2 or 300 yrd shots are very rare.But I still see alot of BELTED MAGNUMS out there with 12 power scopes.Its almost become a kinda joke.And there are those that get it, and those that, JUST DONT GET IT.. GLASSMAN73

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from GLASSMAN73 wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

When it comes to the use of a 223 for deer. I would not recomend it.AT ALL.The bullet is way to light to deliver sufficient energy to target for a humain kill.The bullet its self is like 50 gr and around 3300fps, but the high velocity does not make up for lack of mass, the weight of the bullet witch = energy to target.So what you get is a bullet that is very light and very fast and deflected easily,say off a leg bone or a rib.Sending the bullet off in who knows what direction leaving you with a wounded animal..And that is never a good thing....GLASSMAN73

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from ricochet wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

In reference to jag2u612 's comments about not "chatting" about long range, high speed rounds,etc.,It's just "chat", thats what gun lovers do! I applaud you recognizing your limits and not shooting at 300' or beyond. There are those that don't have a problem with those ranges though, and may not have shots inside of it. As long as they also know their limits..no problem. As for the lead and x-rays, just say it..they haven't found lead beyond 18". To say that it may be the machine, or the size of the deer or whatever is just trying to bend the facts to your argument. Besides, what caliber, speed, range, etc. were those shots that were tested? Could they have been from a .30/.30? In closing....it's just Chat!

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from wyattblevins wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

Shoot the 69 gr. .223 Remington express. It has 1133 ft-lbs at 100 yards. Thats more than enough to kill your deer humanely. I've never had a problem with injuring a deer with one of these.

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from Steve Marlin wrote 4 years 12 weeks ago

Interesting article. I like the post note on marksmanship.

On side note: Please,please anything but rehashing ".223 for deer" again.

F&S staff - please consider making no ".223 for deer" posting part of the user agreement on this site.

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from Steve Marlin wrote 4 years 12 weeks ago

Interesting article. I like the post note on marksmanship.

On side note: Please,please anything but rehashing ".223 for deer" again.

F&S staff - please consider making no ".223 for deer" posting part of the user agreement on this site.

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from coyotezapper wrote 4 years 4 weeks ago

The reason for the velocity craze is MPBR which can make an average shooter a little better at longer ranges. This is accomplished by either a light bullet run really fast or a heavy VLD bullet run at moderate to fast velocities. There is only one light bullet for caliber in my opinion that will work in this scenario and that is the Barnes TTSX. It will not come apart at high velocities. I shoot a 120 TTSX in a 7mm mag at 3550 fps and it is a true long range performer. I have also shot Berger VLD's at moderate velocities and they are actually better past 700 yards in the wind but the bullet performs more like an Accubond type bullet, which is still okay. All of this being said in the 36 years I have been hunting, other than varmints the longest shot I have ever had to take is 520 yards. Plenty close for a good 30-06. Notice I said "had to take". I always get as close as I can as it is called hunting and not shooting. There is way to much long range hype. If you do it, practice,practice,practice!!!!

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from WeatherbySven87 wrote 4 years 3 weeks ago

i like a 243 for antelope hunting as its light and doesnt kick much which is nice cause you spend alot of time walking, running and going from standing to prone rather often. i much prefer a .300 for elk and bear hunting though because of the possibly greater distances and the nature of the beasts. i have really gotten to likeing the magnum because they shoot so flat. 100 and 200 yards is dead-nuts on the crosshairs with 300 yards hardly dropping the bullet at all either. im somewhat conservative on my budget and as much as i want a monarch with a BDC i cant afford one. so if i see a monster bull at 400 yards i take comfort in knowing the bullet will get there, on target, and then some.

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from WeatherbySven87 wrote 4 years 3 weeks ago

i was also noticing alot of peeps talking about the 223s and killing deer with them. someone said a 69gr bullet will creat 1150 or so ft/lbs at 100 yards, which is sufficient, but beyond that its slightly less predictable if it will kill efficiently and humanely. Ron Weatherby's theory when creating his cartridges was to drive a large bullet at super high speeds, rather than just a small one, to creat hydrostatic shock in ammount sufficient to kill large animals at great distances. im sure u can kill a deer with a .223 at 300 or even 400 yards. but in my oppinion thats more of a wager and not a guarantee. when you only get one shot i prefer a guarantee

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from WeatherbySven87 wrote 4 years 2 weeks ago

and it appears speed DOES kill. after all isnt that why we use guns and not small rocks. if you pick up a rock about the size of a bullet and throw it, it wont do anything to the deer but scare it. now make this small rock go 3000fps and it definitally will kill a deer. also the reason we use guns and not sharp sticks is because we cant catch a deer on foot. i.e. we arnt fast enough. i have hunted a few times with someone using a 30-30(there is a place for the 30-30 but this situation called for somthing better) and he had an elk cross up a hill in front of him 400 yards or so. his son(using a .243) took a couple shots(hit nothing) but he shouldered his lever, aimed then brought it back down knowing fullwell there wasnt a chance in hell for him to hit it.
saying speed doesnt kill is saying people should just use .22lrs instead of 220s or 22-250s cause the speed isnt necessary. i disagree

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from DakotaMan wrote 4 years 2 weeks ago

It appears that I am in the minority here but I like speed. Of course I shoot a lot more than an occassional deer. I shoot prairie dogs out to 400-600 yards commonly and long range shots at antelope, coyotes, foxes and muleys are common in the midwest. A lot of the animals I target are running full speed and the higher the velocity, the easier they are to hit. My observations after a lifetime of hunting have been a litte different. I find that when bullet speeds are very high (like over 3500 fps) the hydrostatic shock does flatten all animals much more than at slower speeds. I shoot squirrels in the foot at speeds between 3750 fps and 4100 fps for guaranteed instant kills. That way it doesn't pulverize them. I have shot deer in the jugular vein of the neck (because that is all I could see) and had their liver and lungs pulverized from the shot. I have hit very few deer over 3500 fps that even quivered let alone took a step. I don't turn meat to mush because I usually hit them high in the rear of the shoulder where the bullet passes through. If they are out at ranges beyond 200 yards, the bullet has slowed anyway. You will notice that when you hit a deer with a 30-30 it is advisable to cut its throat so the meat bleeds out. When you hit it with a fast bullet, cutting the throat won't make any difference because the blood has already been pulled from the circulatory system. Take a look at Clay's link above. Try it, you will see. I shoot a 25-06 and a .300 Dakota for most hunting. The 25 is all that is necessary up to deer sized game and the .300 shoots 165g bullets over 3500 fps for just about anything else. Like you say, I use the large for caliber 210g bullets in that for 1000 yard shooting to retain enough speed to harvest an elk at that range. I am not so interested in killing deer deader... I depend on the speed for minimum hold over, minimum wind allowance and minimum lead. The phenominal sudden death is just a bonus if the animal is within a hundred yards or so. If I am in thick brush with a 25 yard shot, an arrow or a slug is just fine.

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from fng wrote 4 years 2 weeks ago

Ive yet to kill anything, but my poor underloaded 6.5x55 swede (140 grains, sd of .28, 2550 fps) will still put a bullet in a deer head sized area at 400 yards. Id say that that is a dead deer.

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from Bellringer wrote 4 years 1 week ago

I have seen several whitetails killed with .22lr hollowpoints, it just depends on where you hit them.

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from Bellringer wrote 4 years 1 week ago

I have seen several whitetails killed with .22lr hollowpoints, it just depends on where you hit them.

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from Sarge01 wrote 4 years 5 days ago

Over the years I have played the long distance speed game. Last year the second week of our WV deer season my newest speed burner arrived and I was able to kill a buck the last day of the deer season. I used to shoot 270 Win. 270WSM 7MM Magnum's 257 Weatherby Mag then 300 WSM but my newest is the speed burner 338 Federal. My 200 grain bullets are traveling at a sissling 2550 FPS, will put 3 Hornady 200 grain interlocks in the same hole at 100 yards, and with approx. 50 grains of powder is very easy on my shoulder and when a deer is shot with the 338 Federal it is as dead as any of the high speed rounds. The rest of my high power rifles may never leave my gunsafe again. What a wonderful gun.

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from whitetailfreek wrote 3 years 50 weeks ago

Absolutely awesome article.

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from Swede1945 wrote 3 years 50 weeks ago

A SC deer study suggests that although shot placement is the most important factor in quick kills, the faster energy transfer of soft rifle bullets (compared with slower expanding types) produces kills with more instant drops and fewer yards travelled, on average. See: http://www.dnr.sc.gov/wildlife/deer/articlegad.html

A West Point deer study with handgun bullets also showed that for comparable (center of chest) shot placement on broadside deer, the faster (1450 fps) bullet with greater energy transfer dropped deer more quickly than the slower bullet (950 fps). See: http://arxiv.org/ftp/physics/papers/0702/0702107.pdf

Possible mechanisms are discussed in a number of articles, including these: Jim Carmichael, Outdoor Life, July 31, 2003, http://www.outdoorlife.com/node/45560 and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrostatic_shock . I find it interesting that those claiming "no correlation" never publish their data, but there is abundant published data supporting increased wounding and incapacitation potential of loads with high rates of energy transfer.

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from DaleScrambler wrote 3 years 39 weeks ago

Noob Replying to Swede 1945: Through my research I compare all cartridges to the .30-06 150gr to 180 gr. To me, it is the standard rifle round.

A quick search revealed .30-06 speed to be around 2500-2900 FPS. I personally would like my hunting rifle bullets (regardless of caliber) traveling 2550-2700 fps, not more. Unless we are Snipers and shoot ridicumalously far, I see no need for more barrel wear. .30-06 @ 2700 FPS is the standard Killing round, being used in WWII. I hear Deer ain't all that different from humans as far as body goes.

A .30 caliber rifle shooting a round at 2550 fps, to me, is considered lol a, "High Power Rifle" as my grandma would say. I can't imagine needing more speed to kill a deer. \

A minimum fps, I hear, for deer killing is 1000. So, yes, I would want my hunting HANDGUN to shoot real fast but how many handguns can reach 2500 fps??? 2000 FPS would be fast for a handgun! Another example: A 22-250 at 4000FPS. What are we trying to do, destroy a wolf with reactive tank armor!? If you prefer high speed, fine. I'd say there is nothing wrong with you at all, it is your preference. To me, 2700 FPS means dead bodies as much as 3700 FPS.

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from JOHN LENARTZ wrote 3 years 39 weeks ago

I have both a savage 240/3000 and a 300, model 99's. If you want to shoot flat at 200yrds the 250 will do it. But learn the right elivation on the 300 and the knock down power is there. Best elk gun around.

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from Treestand wrote 3 years 39 weeks ago

I have used a Win M/100~243 for thirty years,
useing the 80gr,75gr,70gr
and hand loaded 60gr ammo on whitetail's(one shot stop)its bullit
placement,and Hydrostatic shock that stops. no meat damage,but
the 100gr Rem core-lokt will give you meat damage. C~FL

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from shane256 wrote 3 years 34 weeks ago

My .260 Rem using 140gr @ ~2700fps has proven to be exceptionally good deer medicine.

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from darksoldierscadamia wrote 3 years 34 weeks ago

largest rifle i own is a 7mm-08, this cartridge has gotten me some really good venison. i will admit, supersonic speed demon bullets and large accurate rifles are fun. but as far as i am concerned i enjoy meat too much to go wasting shots at over 150 yeards.

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from darksoldierscadamia wrote 3 years 34 weeks ago

and seriously, lead poisoning is lead poisoning. and a hole is a hole. if it is a big hole in the right spot, you now have the vital ingredient in venison spaghetti.

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from viperkat wrote 3 years 24 weeks ago

I would like to put your concerns about lead poisoning in proper perspective...please bare with me.

I am 67 years old, having hunted for over 50 years for just about everything, including Brown Bears. For work, I was a splicer for the telephone company, splicing lead sheathed cable, breathing the lead fumes from the melting pot and handling the lead plates and sheaths of the trade. Further, I melted lead for sinkers and lead bullets for my .38s and .357s.

If you remember being a kid, and all the times we played with Mercury, coating pennies and dimes, or pushing it around with our fingers. I don't believe I remember every being concerned about Mercury Poisoning.

I am not a Physician or a Scientist and I cannot guarantee that you won't get sick from something but keep all things in perspective and don't lose your love for hunting and fishing based upon someone's opinion on something that they still don't understand. I hope I am still hunting at 80. I'm still working at 67, and hunting as hard as ever.

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from LDW wrote 3 years 24 weeks ago

Ammunition is an interesting topic because those who are not familiar with guns have no idea there are so many variances in ammunition. Thank you,
Venice Florida MLS

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from deerslayer2200 wrote 3 years 21 weeks ago

If you want a quick kill, shoot your deer in the head. there's no damage to meat. a .223 can easily do the job out to 200 yards

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from willhrichardson wrote 3 years 21 weeks ago

I shoot a .243 Winchester. Hit a whitetail high in the shoulder and it isn't going anywhere. True, 300 yd shots aren't possible, but in the woods in Georgia I usually don't get shots much farther than 150 yds. Most guys just want to say they have the biggest, baddest gun money could buy. No pun intended, but it's usually overkill.

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from Oldclimber wrote 3 years 16 weeks ago

I have only been connecting on deer well in the last 10 year. Did not have a lot of time to hunt before that. I have been using a Win .308 in a Remington 760 pump for 30 + years now, and since I butcher my own exclusively, I am able to account first hand for the devastation that even this mid-velocity round can do if an improperly (or expeditiously) placed shot brings home the meat that is left. Whatever quarter this round hits (in 180 grain, Cor-Lokt, PSP) is a throw away, given a non-chest cavity hit. My last deer, I hit slightly quartering into me at 50 yards, still hunting, that moved as I pulled the trigger. It hit a little high and midway back. There was a .30 caliber hole at the entrance point, and no exit. Under the skin at the entrance hole, there were no rib bones for a diameter of 2 inches. The bullet took the liver, the top of stomach, the back of the lungs, the tenderloins (nipped the front-most, transmitted to the back), and transmitted I don't know how many foot-pounds into the chops of that section. Needless to say, it was not a good hit. Also needless to say is that I can not imagine what one of these mag loads would have done given this sub-optimal placement, at this sub-optimal range, at this typical scenario for Pennsylvania hunting. Actually, I am beginning to think the .308 is a tad on the heavy side, but I am reluctant to change. As a correlative to this perception it is a cinch that the mags are out.

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from Zacpro wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Great article!

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from Oregon Jim wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

It just seems wise to me to match the caliber you are shooting to the maximum of your needs for the occassion. If your maximum shot is to be under 300 yards for example, a smaller caliber is surely adequate, but if your target is 1,200 yards out on a distant mountain side, a heavier caliber is the norm.

Simpy put, one size does not meet all expectations.

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from Magnimus Stryker wrote 2 years 42 weeks ago

Actually, higher velocity loads do carry more energy than slower, contrary to what another poster said; but it is not just the energy that counts, it's how it is imparted to the target, and that's where bullet mass, and bullet construction come in. Also, shot placement is pretty important.

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from hutter wrote 2 years 36 weeks ago

Just something about a 20gr. .17 cal.bullet sizzeling along at4350 to 4450 fps that makes my heart flutter. Prairie Dogs are just a memory while the shot is still in your ears. Haven't ever tried it but P.O. Ackley said it would completly jellify a burro.

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from Steve Spruiell wrote 2 years 31 weeks ago

guess im in the minority too, been shootin a 7mm Mag in a cheap savage 110 for bout 25 yrs. taken more than my share of good white tails with winchester powerpoints and now ballistic tips and i can say that FEET PER SECOND IS MY BEST FRIEND!!!!!!!!!
zeroed at 200 yrds leaves very little adjustment needed either way.
when i first got it, i ran across an older man that shot the same thing, He gave me the very best advice anyone couldve.
said he'd made many kills without having to track or throw bloodshot meat away by aiming right for the deers dead center at broadside. for 25 years now, ive been walking in his footsteps and with some of the most awsome killshots forever etched in my mind because 90% of the time, with a well centered shot, you will see the whites of their bellies as they are blown right off their feet!!!!!!! with the belted magnums, any shot between the front and rear legs is lethal!!! doesnt even matter if you hit em in the gut. crap, im not a perfect shooter so every now and then ill have one go high,low or foward or back and it just dont matter!!!!!!! previously, i have tracked wounded deer half the day or night, sometimes you find em and sometimes not. Either way that craps no fun.
BELTED MAGNUMS BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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from dbramley wrote 2 years 29 weeks ago

i have read alot of the comments here, have shot hundreds of different rounds and different calibers and found that the high velocity rounds are good for distances greater than 500 yrds allowing them to slow and reach their potential. I would rather look at the fpe than the fps. I shot a deer at 150 yrds with a 7mm mag small entrance wound,same size exitwound, bullet was moving to fast for expansion. so i would rather shoot a slower bullet like a 30/30 with does all its damage in 12-18 inches. you can kill any animal with any size round with shot placement but deer dont run when you hit them with a higher fpe and a slower round that allows for proper expansion upon hitting the target.

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from dbramley wrote 2 years 29 weeks ago

i have read alot of the comments here, have shot hundreds of different rounds and different calibers and found that the high velocity rounds are good for distances greater than 500 yrds allowing them to slow and reach their potential. I would rather look at the fpe than the fps. I shot a deer at 150 yrds with a 7mm mag small entrance wound,same size exitwound, bullet was moving to fast for expansion. so i would rather shoot a slower bullet like a 30/30 with does all its damage in 12-18 inches. you can kill any animal with any size round with shot placement but deer dont run when you hit them with a higher fpe and a slower round that allows for proper expansion upon hitting the target.

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from DakotaMan wrote 2 years 16 weeks ago

Just to clarify: I don't use speed to kill deer deader... to me speed helps immensely in just being able to hit game in the vitals in many cases. Once a bullet actually hits a deer in the heart, its speed is not too relevent to death as long as it is over 1800 feet per second. They all die... some make it 20 feet and some drop in their tracks. When your maximum whitetail distance is 50 yards, you can shoot just about anything and a fast rifle could be a hinderance because it can defelct easily in brush and it destroys meat if you aren't careful in your aim.

However, on the prairie where game is normally quite distant and often running, speed is king. For those of us who grew up with that kind of hunting, you won't find many rifles slower than a 7MMM mag. I would hazard a guess that you will NEVER find a .30-.30 or a .35 Rem. For coyotes and antelope, the most common among my family and friends are the 22-250 and the 25-06.

Every once in a while a visitor shows up with a .308 shooting at 2700 fps. They usually go home with a lot of empties but very little game. Not that a .308 is a bad rifle, but it really makes hitting a distant running coyote a challenge. Can you imagine attempting to determine whether your antelope lead should be 85 feet or 90 feet? Good luck!

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from hutter wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

P.O. Ackley comes to mind. When he was developing the .17 he would shoot large burros and the small light weight bullet going 4000fps would "jellyfy the insides. Velocity KILLS.

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from hutter wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

P.O. Ackley comes to mind. When he was developing the .17 he would shoot large burros and the small light weight bullet going 4000fps would "jellyfy the insides. Velocity KILLS.

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from missedit wrote 1 year 49 weeks ago

JUST go out & shoot & have fun.
22 is cheap to shoot.
Just rember the proper tool for the proper job!!!!.

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from deadeyedick wrote 1 year 46 weeks ago

I am speed freak and always will be. The faster the better. The only time I tone down my reloads is when accuracy starts to suffer. This is in reference to varmint loads only. When it comes to big rifles I prefer accuracy over speed

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from T.W. Davidson wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Excellent article, Mr. P.

These days my favorite rifle is a 7x57 Mauser, though I have other rifles that will shoot much faster. True, I handload my 7x57 to shoot 120, 130 and 140 grain bullets at velocities that match healthy handloads for the 7mm-08--an easy and safe thing to do in a strong, modern rifle--but that's as far as I go, and my 7x57 is at least as much gun as I need for 99.8% of the centerfire rifle shooting (and very limited hunting)I do. With my Mauser, and with handloads I've developed for my rifle (a Model 70 Featherweight which has been tweaked and loved by a P.O. Ackley-trained gunsmith), I feel comfortable taking shots out to 300 yards, or maybe just a touch farther under optimal conditions. I'm not comfortable taking a shot on a game animal at more than 350-400 yards with any rifle in any caliber even though I'm a good shot, I handload and chronograph and test my own ammo, and I practice as often as I can.

Incidentally, although my eyes are not quite at the same super-vision power and acuity level they once were, I believe I can actually see factory load 7x57 Mauser rounds going down range after I shoot them, from about 30 yards out and then onwards. (The bullet drop difference even at 100 yards between any of the standard factory loads is significant compared to my handloads in any bullet weight.) Years ago I could routinely see 9mm Parabellum and .45 auto bullets going down range when I was in the service or when I was at the pistol range in the years that followed. I admit I am mystified as to how any person can see a rifle bullet going 2600 fps or faster going down range.

Do you (or any who read this blog) ever see your bullets going down range?

TWD

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from JASmith wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

Excellent discussion!

As likely everyone is aware, there's a growing community that believe the .223 Remington is the cat's meow for deer. Furthermore, there's not much discussion of differences in size of deer.

I think your comments on the use of the .223 for deer and other comparable sized game would be welcome to the larger community!

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from guyandarifle wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

For the sake of another take I'd like to throw this out there for consideration. Deer are not terribly hard to kill, be it with a .223/30-30 or whatever. A well struck deer with any decent round/bullet probably isn't going far. Upshot is you're pretty limited in differentiating one cartridge from another. Now, a .30-30 and a .300 Wby shoot the same caliber bullet. Instead of deer I'm now planning on shooting a grizzly. I have PROFOUNDLY different expectations of the efficacy of the two cartridges for the task at hand and it's got nothing to do with ranging. I'll have no problem with either hitting my target at 100yds but have more than a little interest in terminal impact differences between the two. (and don't even get me started on having to stop a charge) For that matter I'd MUCH prefer my .340 Wby with 275gr A-Frames over the .300, and again it's not a question of long range trajectory.

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from jamesabrt wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

I have an aquaintance who has managed to put together a long-range rifle that's pretty amazing, to me at least.
It's a .338 ultra-mag. He started out with a standard 798 Remington receiver and from there it really took off. The barrel is ported and the overall length from the buttplate to the brake is 49 and 1/2 inches. He added a NightForce NX25 42x56 scope, and the program for the scope will run on his cell phone, computing adjustments for distance, elevation,windage and curvature of the earth. He finished it off with a McMillan custom stock and this beast should still be super-sonic at one and a half to two miles. That's over 1,125 fps at that distance.
Since I'm still sort of Old-school and like to hunt with iron sights, it's hard for me to get my mind around a weapon such as this. I have photos and believe me, it's truly a work of art.
From Mr. Petzals article, I can only imagine the recoil, even with the most advanced recoil pad. It must be like pulling both triggers on a double 10 gauge, and I know from experience and accident, THAT HURTS.
STAY SAFE: James

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from Cheap Shot wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

A lot of guys at my gun club shoot moly-coated bullets. When conditions are right they leave a "contrail" of vaporized lube in the air.

A bullet traveling directly away from you (in your line of sight) is easier to see than one viewed from off to the side of the line of fire where your eyes have to "track it" to see it.

I have people who know I shoot and hunt ask me what kind of rifle they should get. If they just want one for general purpose, my answer for years has been a .30-06. Besides it's proven performance as a cartridge, there are TONS of reloading data and components out there. There's even surplus ammo still available. Often their response would be, "Well, what about the 300 Win Mag? or 7mm Mag?" The next time I get that question, I'm going to send them the link to this discussion. Thanks for some great observations!

Jamesabrt, your buddy with the tricked out ultra-mag doesn't have to feel the recoil. Just strap the thing down on sandbags and pull the trigger with a string when the image from the scope lines up with the target - as seen on the cell phone screen. ;-)

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

Not only do super-speed cartridges not kill any faster?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrostatic_shock

Hydrostatic shock
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Average time until incapacitation decreases rapidly with pressure wave magnitude as magnitudes approach 500 psi. See: Links between traumatic brain injury and ballistic pressure waves originating in the thoracic cavity and extremities. Brain Injury 21(7): 657–662, 2007.The term hydrostatic shock describes the observation that a penetrating projectile can produce remote wounding and incapacitating effects in living targets, in addition to local effects in tissue caused by direct impact, through a hydraulic effect in liquid-filled tissues.[1][2] There is scientific evidence that hydrostatic shock can produce remote neural damage and produce incapacitation more quickly than blood loss effects.[3] The debate between proponents of bullets that are "light and fast" versus bullets that are "slow and heavy" often refers to this phenomenon.

Human autopsy results have demonstrated brain hemorrhaging from fatal hits to the chest, including cases with handgun bullets.[4] Thirty-three cases of fatal penetrating chest wounds by a single bullet were selected from a much larger set by excluding all other traumatic factors, including past history.

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from albertahunter wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

Excellent article. Here in Alberta we have a little more space and 300 yard shots are common or you get nothing. I hunt an area several thousand acreas with large open areas. I coached my 12 year old nephew to his first deer couple days ago with 7mm-08 at a rangefinder distance of 285yds. Both shots he fired hit it and one would have been ok but with the lack of snow here I didnt want it to get into the bush. I usually shoot a 30-06 but use a 300WM if I have no buck by last few days. Again, excellent article and can be used in a lot of arguments with speed addicts.

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from GLASSMAN73 wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

Ok lets see...In reguards to seeing the bullet's flying down range is called a VAPOR TRAIL...And whats happening is that the bullets traveling at high velocitys are spliting the air with the nose of the bullet,causing a light refraction anomaly, thus giving you your vapor trail....So what your usually seeing is the billowy cone streaking directly behind the projectile and not really the bullet it self....But it is posible to see the bullet's on slower projectiles if the lighting is right...GLASSMAN73

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from GLASSMAN73 wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

As for the article.This is good stuff, bringing to light what alot of people just can't see.People always want that hot new round runnin 3300fps blowing the shoulders off of some poor deer at 60yrds.Now if your hunting out west or way up north shooting elk or moose at 4 or 500 yrds.YES a nice magnum is in order.But whitetails or antelope even fat mule deer can be easly harvested with a 270 or 3006 out at 4 or 500yrds.As long as you have a good bullet, know your dope and have practiced at those ranges.I use a 3006 with 165gr sst hornady ammo.And i have taken a few white tails out at around 300 yrds with no problem. The bullets were not recoverd.But the bulk of my kills have been less than 100 yrds. And the same with most of the people i have hunted with.I'm out of north eastern virginia where 2 or 300 yrd shots are very rare.But I still see alot of BELTED MAGNUMS out there with 12 power scopes.Its almost become a kinda joke.And there are those that get it, and those that, JUST DONT GET IT.. GLASSMAN73

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from GLASSMAN73 wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

When it comes to the use of a 223 for deer. I would not recomend it.AT ALL.The bullet is way to light to deliver sufficient energy to target for a humain kill.The bullet its self is like 50 gr and around 3300fps, but the high velocity does not make up for lack of mass, the weight of the bullet witch = energy to target.So what you get is a bullet that is very light and very fast and deflected easily,say off a leg bone or a rib.Sending the bullet off in who knows what direction leaving you with a wounded animal..And that is never a good thing....GLASSMAN73

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from wyattblevins wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

Shoot the 69 gr. .223 Remington express. It has 1133 ft-lbs at 100 yards. Thats more than enough to kill your deer humanely. I've never had a problem with injuring a deer with one of these.

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from DakotaMan wrote 4 years 2 weeks ago

It appears that I am in the minority here but I like speed. Of course I shoot a lot more than an occassional deer. I shoot prairie dogs out to 400-600 yards commonly and long range shots at antelope, coyotes, foxes and muleys are common in the midwest. A lot of the animals I target are running full speed and the higher the velocity, the easier they are to hit. My observations after a lifetime of hunting have been a litte different. I find that when bullet speeds are very high (like over 3500 fps) the hydrostatic shock does flatten all animals much more than at slower speeds. I shoot squirrels in the foot at speeds between 3750 fps and 4100 fps for guaranteed instant kills. That way it doesn't pulverize them. I have shot deer in the jugular vein of the neck (because that is all I could see) and had their liver and lungs pulverized from the shot. I have hit very few deer over 3500 fps that even quivered let alone took a step. I don't turn meat to mush because I usually hit them high in the rear of the shoulder where the bullet passes through. If they are out at ranges beyond 200 yards, the bullet has slowed anyway. You will notice that when you hit a deer with a 30-30 it is advisable to cut its throat so the meat bleeds out. When you hit it with a fast bullet, cutting the throat won't make any difference because the blood has already been pulled from the circulatory system. Take a look at Clay's link above. Try it, you will see. I shoot a 25-06 and a .300 Dakota for most hunting. The 25 is all that is necessary up to deer sized game and the .300 shoots 165g bullets over 3500 fps for just about anything else. Like you say, I use the large for caliber 210g bullets in that for 1000 yard shooting to retain enough speed to harvest an elk at that range. I am not so interested in killing deer deader... I depend on the speed for minimum hold over, minimum wind allowance and minimum lead. The phenominal sudden death is just a bonus if the animal is within a hundred yards or so. If I am in thick brush with a 25 yard shot, an arrow or a slug is just fine.

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from Steve Spruiell wrote 2 years 31 weeks ago

guess im in the minority too, been shootin a 7mm Mag in a cheap savage 110 for bout 25 yrs. taken more than my share of good white tails with winchester powerpoints and now ballistic tips and i can say that FEET PER SECOND IS MY BEST FRIEND!!!!!!!!!
zeroed at 200 yrds leaves very little adjustment needed either way.
when i first got it, i ran across an older man that shot the same thing, He gave me the very best advice anyone couldve.
said he'd made many kills without having to track or throw bloodshot meat away by aiming right for the deers dead center at broadside. for 25 years now, ive been walking in his footsteps and with some of the most awsome killshots forever etched in my mind because 90% of the time, with a well centered shot, you will see the whites of their bellies as they are blown right off their feet!!!!!!! with the belted magnums, any shot between the front and rear legs is lethal!!! doesnt even matter if you hit em in the gut. crap, im not a perfect shooter so every now and then ill have one go high,low or foward or back and it just dont matter!!!!!!! previously, i have tracked wounded deer half the day or night, sometimes you find em and sometimes not. Either way that craps no fun.
BELTED MAGNUMS BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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from Brian W. Thair wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

We had an indoor range with 10 places. If I shot from #8 with only the spotlights on the targets, I could see a .45 coming from #1 out of the corner of my eye. A gray stripe about a foot long, just in front of the target. Hard to remember but not more than 800-900fps (range regulation).

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from Brian Jackson wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

I've seen .22LR when doing target shooting at long distance (for a .22). Shooting with my neighbor's tricked out target rifle and a 20+X scope you can see the .22 impacting the target. According to Winchester ballistic tables that's right around 1000fps at 100 yds.

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from WhitetailHunter706 wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

thats a preety good article tells you bout everything you need to know or care to know

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from udarrell wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

I am loading 100-gr 6mm "bonded bullets," for my .243 Win & for my 243/06 Wildcat, that will help reduce lead fouling of the meat.

The all copper bullets are also a solution.
Wisconsin DNR is speaking to this lead contamination issue on this page>
http://dnr.wi.gov/org/land/wildlife/lead.htm - Darrell

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from fallenleader wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

it's somewhat off topic but what about FMJ rounds? or as above said, copper. and there are some other alternative alloy's?

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from jamesabrt wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

Jag2u612, you have a very good point about the potential of lead poisoning, but lead poisoning isn't confined to high velocity rounds.
It would be a good subject for an article and discussion, but since Mr. Petzals article was about high velocity rounds, I thought that was supposed to be what was commented on, not lead poisoning, or any number of subjects that are important in their own right.
STAY SAFE: James

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from pautof wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

Dave: never saw a person kill a tiger with a .22 LR, but was very impressed by a photo that used to be on the DPMS site, the caption read "This was a one shot kill on a 2100 pound bull buffalo using a DPMS LoPro Classic in .223. Shot by Jesse S____ and pictured by Jim R_____. Shot placement is critical, excellent accuracy by DPMS. Thank you guys for making this day exciting!"

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from fisherus wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

This author has quite a few things right on the nose. The true dynamics of the killing power of any rifle is always going to be superceeded by shot placement. I always stress that if you have a gun you can shoot well and know it's limitations, you have the right gun for you. The second part of the killing sequence is measured with a combination of bullet speed, type, and ballistic coefficient.
If you haven't seen a bullet fly out of a gun barrel, shot a .45acp in the air in a safe direction. You can even see the bullet tumble in some instances.

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from fisherus wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

I have always said that shot placement is the number one priorty in being an effective hunter. If you have a firearm that you are comfortable with shooting,shoot it well,and know it's limitations, you have the right firearm for you.
The Author hit the nail right on the head. Speed makes bullets shoot flatter. It takes a combination of speed connected with the ballistic coefficient of the bullet to keep the speed up at long distances. Bullets without the appropriate aerodynamics and ballistic coefficient will not travel as far, just reach shorter yardage targets faster. This comes at a price to the shooter due to barrel burn. As an avid varmint shooter and reloader, I learned that the fastest speed also doesn't make for the best accuracy. Keeping my .22-.250 Remington and .22-.250AI under 3600fps triples my barrel life. Larger calibers such as my custom .300RUM and .338Edge don't see the volume of rounds pumped through them that my varmint rifles do, so I have far less concern with using high velocity to reach long range targets.

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from Gunslinger wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

To each his own: For me, I've hunted the Rockies for yeas,taking Elk, Mlies, W-tails and hundeds of W-tails her at home. I use teh Re, 700 CDl with 24" bbl and the Sciroccos in l80 grs. It has killed all the above. I zero for 200 yds, and last year in MT killed a Animal at 385 yds using the above. Bullet oly dropped 2" from poit of Aim, now thats what I call hittig the spot. I would trust this set up on all NA game other than the Brownie or Griz.And would attemt those providing I had a back up shooter wth a 375 H&H. 553 ys ago when I bought my first 06, I was told I needed Westerns 220 gr round nose for deer???? yep,I bought some and yet have a box or so around. But when the Polymer tip and Boattail hit the market I knew what I wanted. It flies true and flat. Put your cross hairs on the spot you plan to hit and if you hold steady it will hit within 3-4" of that at up to 400 yds I know. I don;t hunt anywher wher ovr 400 yds is needed, in fact with a Nikon 3x9x40 i doubt I could even hold on target beyond that range, without the scope/Bincs it does enable me to make longe shots than her at home where the average shot is 100 yds etc. And teh old 30-30 is yet a good woods gun with open sight, in fact it's a must here where I live with lots of 2nd growth oaks.Do have about 4 fields that can shoot up to about 300 yds if at the furtherest point.But the Gun Mfges and Ammo makes,got to come out with new stuff, so us Idiots will think will guarantee a nice trophy for their wall. No so, pratice,pratice, pratice and right equiptments does that. Ifit ai't broke, leave be.Shoot-um-straight and very often.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

David, I'm surprised you overlooked the 264 Win Mag of its origin and how it met its fate! If and when metallurgy and cartridge components catches up to this fine cartridge it will never get the true honor it deserves!

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

Has anyone ever stood behind a person shooting prone during a High Power Match especially shooting a magnum and watch the shock wave travel down there body to there toes and back up again.

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

What Is The Real Truth About High Velocity Hunting Bullets?
It all depends on your geographical location!

I cannot over emphasize the following,

From Clays archives of bookmarks, places, information and things to read,

ken.mcloud said it best! “

So, I think that the superior killing power of larger rounds is largely in our heads.(likely testosterone induced) A flat-shooting round that you can accurately place will produce as many if not more "bang-flop" kills as a heavy caliber round.”

And may I add to this, It all depends on your geographical location!!

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from BeardogRed wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

Thanks for the review!

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

Take another Rolaids Dave :)

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from Clay Cooper wrote 4 years 20 weeks ago

When it comes down to the bottom line, I'll stick to the rifle I've had now for 41 years, a 30-06 03-A3 built by my Father so I can shoot with the "BIG DOGS" and boy did I!! So what you shoot a Magnum, I bridged the gap with special loads and skill :)

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from ricochet wrote 4 years 19 weeks ago

In reference to jag2u612 's comments about not "chatting" about long range, high speed rounds,etc.,It's just "chat", thats what gun lovers do! I applaud you recognizing your limits and not shooting at 300' or beyond. There are those that don't have a problem with those ranges though, and may not have shots inside of it. As long as they also know their limits..no problem. As for the lead and x-rays, just say it..they haven't found lead beyond 18". To say that it may be the machine, or the size of the deer or whatever is just trying to bend the facts to your argument. Besides, what caliber, speed, range, etc. were those shots that were tested? Could they have been from a .30/.30? In closing....it's just Chat!

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from Sarge01 wrote 4 years 5 days ago

Over the years I have played the long distance speed game. Last year the second week of our WV deer season my newest speed burner arrived and I was able to kill a buck the last day of the deer season. I used to shoot 270 Win. 270WSM 7MM Magnum's 257 Weatherby Mag then 300 WSM but my newest is the speed burner 338 Federal. My 200 grain bullets are traveling at a sissling 2550 FPS, will put 3 Hornady 200 grain interlocks in the same hole at 100 yards, and with approx. 50 grains of powder is very easy on my shoulder and when a deer is shot with the 338 Federal it is as dead as any of the high speed rounds. The rest of my high power rifles may never leave my gunsafe again. What a wonderful gun.

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from Swede1945 wrote 3 years 50 weeks ago

A SC deer study suggests that although shot placement is the most important factor in quick kills, the faster energy transfer of soft rifle bullets (compared with slower expanding types) produces kills with more instant drops and fewer yards travelled, on average. See: http://www.dnr.sc.gov/wildlife/deer/articlegad.html

A West Point deer study with handgun bullets also showed that for comparable (center of chest) shot placement on broadside deer, the faster (1450 fps) bullet with greater energy transfer dropped deer more quickly than the slower bullet (950 fps). See: http://arxiv.org/ftp/physics/papers/0702/0702107.pdf

Possible mechanisms are discussed in a number of articles, including these: Jim Carmichael, Outdoor Life, July 31, 2003, http://www.outdoorlife.com/node/45560 and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrostatic_shock . I find it interesting that those claiming "no correlation" never publish their data, but there is abundant published data supporting increased wounding and incapacitation potential of loads with high rates of energy transfer.

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from Treestand wrote 3 years 39 weeks ago

I have used a Win M/100~243 for thirty years,
useing the 80gr,75gr,70gr
and hand loaded 60gr ammo on whitetail's(one shot stop)its bullit
placement,and Hydrostatic shock that stops. no meat damage,but
the 100gr Rem core-lokt will give you meat damage. C~FL

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from shane256 wrote 3 years 34 weeks ago

My .260 Rem using 140gr @ ~2700fps has proven to be exceptionally good deer medicine.

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from Oregon Jim wrote 2 years 45 weeks ago

It just seems wise to me to match the caliber you are shooting to the maximum of your needs for the occassion. If your maximum shot is to be under 300 yards for example, a smaller caliber is surely adequate, but if your target is 1,200 yards out on a distant mountain side, a heavier caliber is the norm.

Simpy put, one size does not meet all expectations.

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from dbramley wrote 2 years 29 weeks ago

i have read alot of the comments here, have shot hundreds of different rounds and different calibers and found that the high velocity rounds are good for distances greater than 500 yrds allowing them to slow and reach their potential. I would rather look at the fpe than the fps. I shot a deer at 150 yrds with a 7mm mag small entrance wound,same size exitwound, bullet was moving to fast for expansion. so i would rather shoot a slower bullet like a 30/30 with does all its damage in 12-18 inches. you can kill any animal with any size round with shot placement but deer dont run when you hit them with a higher fpe and a slower round that allows for proper expansion upon hitting the target.

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from deadeyedick wrote 1 year 46 weeks ago

I am speed freak and always will be. The faster the better. The only time I tone down my reloads is when accuracy starts to suffer. This is in reference to varmint loads only. When it comes to big rifles I prefer accuracy over speed

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from Jag2u612 wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

It would be nice for once to hear a salient discussion about current events in bullit fragmentation and the damage and potential lead poisoning happening to deer and any other game animals shot by high velocity lead bullits. Who cares about another my guns bigger than your gun discussion when there are real health issue going on with lead conatamination in game meat. The Minnesota DNR tested rifle bullits along with slugs on the carcass's of sheep (considered similar) and road kill deer to check on the lead spread as it were. They found it upwards of 18 inches from the impact shot and could not be completely sure it would not travel farther due to the limitations on the x ray machine and the sizes of the animals being used.

How many of us have ever taken a shot at some big game animal over 300 yards? Less than 2% I would imagine. I have land around 200 acres that alone probably puts me in a smaller sub category. I have a few shots on my land at or beyond 300 yards and you know what? I don't take them period! Two thirds to three quarters of the deer taken in Minnesota where I live are taken at less than 100 yards. About half of those are taken at less than 50 yards!

So less chat about what the cake eaters need, want, or expect from high velocity ammunition and high powered rifles that the average hunter never touches. And more chat about health concerns and reality. Check the Minnesota DRN Web Site for downloadable information on the lead study. http://files.dnr.state.mn.us/fish_wildlife/lead/bulletstudy/resources/sh...

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from coyotezapper wrote 4 years 4 weeks ago

The reason for the velocity craze is MPBR which can make an average shooter a little better at longer ranges. This is accomplished by either a light bullet run really fast or a heavy VLD bullet run at moderate to fast velocities. There is only one light bullet for caliber in my opinion that will work in this scenario and that is the Barnes TTSX. It will not come apart at high velocities. I shoot a 120 TTSX in a 7mm mag at 3550 fps and it is a true long range performer. I have also shot Berger VLD's at moderate velocities and they are actually better past 700 yards in the wind but the bullet performs more like an Accubond type bullet, which is still okay. All of this being said in the 36 years I have been hunting, other than varmints the longest shot I have ever had to take is 520 yards. Plenty close for a good 30-06. Notice I said "had to take". I always get as close as I can as it is called hunting and not shooting. There is way to much long range hype. If you do it, practice,practice,practice!!!!

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from WeatherbySven87 wrote 4 years 3 weeks ago

i like a 243 for antelope hunting as its light and doesnt kick much which is nice cause you spend alot of time walking, running and going from standing to prone rather often. i much prefer a .300 for elk and bear hunting though because of the possibly greater distances and the nature of the beasts. i have really gotten to likeing the magnum because they shoot so flat. 100 and 200 yards is dead-nuts on the crosshairs with 300 yards hardly dropping the bullet at all either. im somewhat conservative on my budget and as much as i want a monarch with a BDC i cant afford one. so if i see a monster bull at 400 yards i take comfort in knowing the bullet will get there, on target, and then some.

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from WeatherbySven87 wrote 4 years 3 weeks ago

i was also noticing alot of peeps talking about the 223s and killing deer with them. someone said a 69gr bullet will creat 1150 or so ft/lbs at 100 yards, which is sufficient, but beyond that its slightly less predictable if it will kill efficiently and humanely. Ron Weatherby's theory when creating his cartridges was to drive a large bullet at super high speeds, rather than just a small one, to creat hydrostatic shock in ammount sufficient to kill large animals at great distances. im sure u can kill a deer with a .223 at 300 or even 400 yards. but in my oppinion thats more of a wager and not a guarantee. when you only get one shot i prefer a guarantee

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from WeatherbySven87 wrote 4 years 2 weeks ago

and it appears speed DOES kill. after all isnt that why we use guns and not small rocks. if you pick up a rock about the size of a bullet and throw it, it wont do anything to the deer but scare it. now make this small rock go 3000fps and it definitally will kill a deer. also the reason we use guns and not sharp sticks is because we cant catch a deer on foot. i.e. we arnt fast enough. i have hunted a few times with someone using a 30-30(there is a place for the 30-30 but this situation called for somthing better) and he had an elk cross up a hill in front of him 400 yards or so. his son(using a .243) took a couple shots(hit nothing) but he shouldered his lever, aimed then brought it back down knowing fullwell there wasnt a chance in hell for him to hit it.
saying speed doesnt kill is saying people should just use .22lrs instead of 220s or 22-250s cause the speed isnt necessary. i disagree

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from whitetailfreek wrote 3 years 50 weeks ago

Absolutely awesome article.

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from DaleScrambler wrote 3 years 39 weeks ago

Noob Replying to Swede 1945: Through my research I compare all cartridges to the .30-06 150gr to 180 gr. To me, it is the standard rifle round.

A quick search revealed .30-06 speed to be around 2500-2900 FPS. I personally would like my hunting rifle bullets (regardless of caliber) traveling 2550-2700 fps, not more. Unless we are Snipers and shoot ridicumalously far, I see no need for more barrel wear. .30-06 @ 2700 FPS is the standard Killing round, being used in WWII. I hear Deer ain't all that different from humans as far as body goes.

A .30 caliber rifle shooting a round at 2550 fps, to me, is considered lol a, "High Power Rifle" as my grandma would say. I can't imagine needing more speed to kill a deer. \

A minimum fps, I hear, for deer killing is 1000. So, yes, I would want my hunting HANDGUN to shoot real fast but how many handguns can reach 2500 fps??? 2000 FPS would be fast for a handgun! Another example: A 22-250 at 4000FPS. What are we trying to do, destroy a wolf with reactive tank armor!? If you prefer high speed, fine. I'd say there is nothing wrong with you at all, it is your preference. To me, 2700 FPS means dead bodies as much as 3700 FPS.

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from JOHN LENARTZ wrote 3 years 39 weeks ago

I have both a savage 240/3000 and a 300, model 99's. If you want to shoot flat at 200yrds the 250 will do it. But learn the right elivation on the 300 and the knock down power is there. Best elk gun around.

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from darksoldierscadamia wrote 3 years 34 weeks ago

largest rifle i own is a 7mm-08, this cartridge has gotten me some really good venison. i will admit, supersonic speed demon bullets and large accurate rifles are fun. but as far as i am concerned i enjoy meat too much to go wasting shots at over 150 yeards.

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from darksoldierscadamia wrote 3 years 34 weeks ago

and seriously, lead poisoning is lead poisoning. and a hole is a hole. if it is a big hole in the right spot, you now have the vital ingredient in venison spaghetti.

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from viperkat wrote 3 years 24 weeks ago

I would like to put your concerns about lead poisoning in proper perspective...please bare with me.

I am 67 years old, having hunted for over 50 years for just about everything, including Brown Bears. For work, I was a splicer for the telephone company, splicing lead sheathed cable, breathing the lead fumes from the melting pot and handling the lead plates and sheaths of the trade. Further, I melted lead for sinkers and lead bullets for my .38s and .357s.

If you remember being a kid, and all the times we played with Mercury, coating pennies and dimes, or pushing it around with our fingers. I don't believe I remember every being concerned about Mercury Poisoning.

I am not a Physician or a Scientist and I cannot guarantee that you won't get sick from something but keep all things in perspective and don't lose your love for hunting and fishing based upon someone's opinion on something that they still don't understand. I hope I am still hunting at 80. I'm still working at 67, and hunting as hard as ever.

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from LDW wrote 3 years 24 weeks ago

Ammunition is an interesting topic because those who are not familiar with guns have no idea there are so many variances in ammunition. Thank you,
Venice Florida MLS

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from deerslayer2200 wrote 3 years 21 weeks ago

If you want a quick kill, shoot your deer in the head. there's no damage to meat. a .223 can easily do the job out to 200 yards

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from willhrichardson wrote 3 years 21 weeks ago

I shoot a .243 Winchester. Hit a whitetail high in the shoulder and it isn't going anywhere. True, 300 yd shots aren't possible, but in the woods in Georgia I usually don't get shots much farther than 150 yds. Most guys just want to say they have the biggest, baddest gun money could buy. No pun intended, but it's usually overkill.

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from Oldclimber wrote 3 years 16 weeks ago

I have only been connecting on deer well in the last 10 year. Did not have a lot of time to hunt before that. I have been using a Win .308 in a Remington 760 pump for 30 + years now, and since I butcher my own exclusively, I am able to account first hand for the devastation that even this mid-velocity round can do if an improperly (or expeditiously) placed shot brings home the meat that is left. Whatever quarter this round hits (in 180 grain, Cor-Lokt, PSP) is a throw away, given a non-chest cavity hit. My last deer, I hit slightly quartering into me at 50 yards, still hunting, that moved as I pulled the trigger. It hit a little high and midway back. There was a .30 caliber hole at the entrance point, and no exit. Under the skin at the entrance hole, there were no rib bones for a diameter of 2 inches. The bullet took the liver, the top of stomach, the back of the lungs, the tenderloins (nipped the front-most, transmitted to the back), and transmitted I don't know how many foot-pounds into the chops of that section. Needless to say, it was not a good hit. Also needless to say is that I can not imagine what one of these mag loads would have done given this sub-optimal placement, at this sub-optimal range, at this typical scenario for Pennsylvania hunting. Actually, I am beginning to think the .308 is a tad on the heavy side, but I am reluctant to change. As a correlative to this perception it is a cinch that the mags are out.

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from Zacpro wrote 3 years 4 weeks ago

Great article!

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from Magnimus Stryker wrote 2 years 42 weeks ago

Actually, higher velocity loads do carry more energy than slower, contrary to what another poster said; but it is not just the energy that counts, it's how it is imparted to the target, and that's where bullet mass, and bullet construction come in. Also, shot placement is pretty important.

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from hutter wrote 2 years 36 weeks ago

Just something about a 20gr. .17 cal.bullet sizzeling along at4350 to 4450 fps that makes my heart flutter. Prairie Dogs are just a memory while the shot is still in your ears. Haven't ever tried it but P.O. Ackley said it would completly jellify a burro.

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from dbramley wrote 2 years 29 weeks ago

i have read alot of the comments here, have shot hundreds of different rounds and different calibers and found that the high velocity rounds are good for distances greater than 500 yrds allowing them to slow and reach their potential. I would rather look at the fpe than the fps. I shot a deer at 150 yrds with a 7mm mag small entrance wound,same size exitwound, bullet was moving to fast for expansion. so i would rather shoot a slower bullet like a 30/30 with does all its damage in 12-18 inches. you can kill any animal with any size round with shot placement but deer dont run when you hit them with a higher fpe and a slower round that allows for proper expansion upon hitting the target.

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from DakotaMan wrote 2 years 16 weeks ago

Just to clarify: I don't use speed to kill deer deader... to me speed helps immensely in just being able to hit game in the vitals in many cases. Once a bullet actually hits a deer in the heart, its speed is not too relevent to death as long as it is over 1800 feet per second. They all die... some make it 20 feet and some drop in their tracks. When your maximum whitetail distance is 50 yards, you can shoot just about anything and a fast rifle could be a hinderance because it can defelct easily in brush and it destroys meat if you aren't careful in your aim.

However, on the prairie where game is normally quite distant and often running, speed is king. For those of us who grew up with that kind of hunting, you won't find many rifles slower than a 7MMM mag. I would hazard a guess that you will NEVER find a .30-.30 or a .35 Rem. For coyotes and antelope, the most common among my family and friends are the 22-250 and the 25-06.

Every once in a while a visitor shows up with a .308 shooting at 2700 fps. They usually go home with a lot of empties but very little game. Not that a .308 is a bad rifle, but it really makes hitting a distant running coyote a challenge. Can you imagine attempting to determine whether your antelope lead should be 85 feet or 90 feet? Good luck!

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from hutter wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

P.O. Ackley comes to mind. When he was developing the .17 he would shoot large burros and the small light weight bullet going 4000fps would "jellyfy the insides. Velocity KILLS.

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from hutter wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

P.O. Ackley comes to mind. When he was developing the .17 he would shoot large burros and the small light weight bullet going 4000fps would "jellyfy the insides. Velocity KILLS.

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from missedit wrote 1 year 49 weeks ago

JUST go out & shoot & have fun.
22 is cheap to shoot.
Just rember the proper tool for the proper job!!!!.

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from Steve Marlin wrote 4 years 12 weeks ago

Interesting article. I like the post note on marksmanship.

On side note: Please,please anything but rehashing ".223 for deer" again.

F&S staff - please consider making no ".223 for deer" posting part of the user agreement on this site.

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from Steve Marlin wrote 4 years 12 weeks ago

Interesting article. I like the post note on marksmanship.

On side note: Please,please anything but rehashing ".223 for deer" again.

F&S staff - please consider making no ".223 for deer" posting part of the user agreement on this site.

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from fng wrote 4 years 2 weeks ago

Ive yet to kill anything, but my poor underloaded 6.5x55 swede (140 grains, sd of .28, 2550 fps) will still put a bullet in a deer head sized area at 400 yards. Id say that that is a dead deer.

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from Bellringer wrote 4 years 1 week ago

I have seen several whitetails killed with .22lr hollowpoints, it just depends on where you hit them.

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from Bellringer wrote 4 years 1 week ago

I have seen several whitetails killed with .22lr hollowpoints, it just depends on where you hit them.

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