E-Tip Bullets: Go with the Gild

A guest-written gear review by Executive Editor Mike Toth

The PR: Anticipating a possible demand for rifle bullets that do not contain lead, Winchester Ammunition [www.winchester.com] and Nosler Bullets jointly developed the E-Tip, a bullet constructed totallly of gilding metal. A polycarbonate tip sits atop an internal chamber to promote mushrooming. The companies claim that the boattail bullet retains 95 percent of its weight after expansion. Available calibers are .30-06, .300 WSM, .300 Win Mag, and .308.

Etip_web2The Takeaway: The day before the NRA Show opened, I watched company executives fire .300 WSM E-tips into ballistic gelatin at the Olin manufacturing facility in East Alton, Illinois. The recovered slugs had mushroomed beautifully (as shown in the photo), fired at 3000 (left slug) and 2500 fps (right slug). If state and/or federal agencies start talking about requiring lead-free bullets in certain areas (there has been an ongoing stink about carrion-eating California condors that are supposedly getting lead poisoning by ingesting slugs in deer that were shot but never recovered), Winchester and Nosler will be ready.

The Cost: Winchester says E-Tips will fall into the same price range as their premium-bullet line.—Mike Toth