View Full Version : whitetail projectiles

01-04-2010, 01:12 PM
Heavy or light bullets of a given caliber? I am a heavy bullet user I am happy to sacrifice some velocity for energy transfer. Does anybody agree or disagree?

01-04-2010, 05:13 PM

With jacketed bullets I will usually go with a light-for-caliber bullet, provided the rifle shoots it best. I like 150gr in my .30cals as they are more than enough for even a very big deer and a lot easier on my shoulder than 165's or 180's in a session at the range. Not that recoil makes any difference in the field, but I like to shoot my deer rifles regularly and am down to the range quite often when the weather cooperates and after 50 rounds through my .308, my shoulder sure knows the difference. Also, shooting at varying ranges and targets, I know where the bullet is going to hit without thinking about it, whereas if I hunted with something heavier than I practice with, I would have to stop and think more about range and bullet drop. I don't tend to keep a rifle that prefers really heavy jacketed bullets regardless of how accurate it is. If it's not fun to shoot, it only gathers dust, and I won't hunt with a rifle that I haven't practiced enough with during the year.

With cast bullets it all depends on what the rifle likes, and many of my rifles prefer heavier bullets, so I am agreeable and load them.

With a handgun, unlike a rifle, I am much happier with heavier-for-caliber bullets, jacketed or cast, but while I don't mind sacrificing some velocity, I will still go for accuracy over weight every time. In the end, it's up to the pistol or revolver.

The bottom line for me is accuracy. I want the most accurate load I can work up (within reason) for a deer rifle. Much more important to me than caliber, bullet weight, or velocity is shot placement, and then proper bullet construction (or alloy). Deer aren't that hard to kill with a shot in the right place - most poachers busted around here in recent years use .22lr in a semiauto rifle or pistol. I think what you use is much less important than how you use it. For each hunting gun I own, I shoot just one load and keep it sighted in for it. This is not to say I am not constantly trying new components, but when I finish a test session, if I have had to adjust the sights, I re-sight for "the load" before I leave the range.

Some hunter/loaders like to choose a bullet first and then try to find a load that works for it. I let the gun tell me what it likes best by offering it a reasonable selection of different weights and styles (usually whatever I have on hand at the time) and if one or more of its picks is appropriate for what I want to hunt, that's what I start my load development for it with.

01-05-2010, 01:33 AM
i usually pick nominal weights at medium velocities.
in the 30's it's 150's or 165's
in the 7mm it's usually a 139.
but in the smaller bores like 25 i like the heavies 120's are all i use in them.
in the handguns i go a bit on the nominal to heavy side but most of my handguns are supermags or magnums.
i usually shoot only cast in both the rifles and revolvers over 7mm though.

01-06-2010, 12:34 PM
Runfiverun what type of 139 ? I will not pose the cast ? here since I have done so elsewhere but in response to versifier " you can kill a deer with a 22lr" (paraphrased) I am an avid archery hunter so I agree as I have taken nice deer with a125gr 250fps broadhead but I rarely am afforded a clean shot due to the areas that I hunt and I definately do not want the deer traveling to the next guy or across the swamp as it is more difficcult each year getting my quarry out (of the swamp) I consider myself an ethical hunter and in short I want the most humane, quickest kockdown kill possible thus I prefer bonded ,jacketed ,heavy for caliber bullets. Is my theory unfounded or too extreme? Shot placement and accuracy are absolutely critical always

01-06-2010, 07:25 PM
I don't think it's unfounded or extreme. Your own experience is a good guide to what will and won't work well for the conditions you have to hunt in. For the record, as a long time HE instructor I never advocate using anything smaller than 6mm/.243 on deer. If for any reason you don't have confidence in the load, don't use it. A little more weight or power isn't going to hurt unless it seriously affects accuracy. Obviously my trusty .35rem is not going to be up to 400 yard shots, even though it's just the ticket for the moderate ranges around here. On the other end of the spectrum, I think what may or may not constitute "overkill" mostly depends on the range involved. I have to shake my head when I see hunters heading into heavy brush with wsm's and highmag scopes when I know 25yds will be a long shot for them. I would call that unfounded and extreme. Personally, I think most of them will have better luck with a fist-sized rock. :mrgreen: It sure isn't going to make any difference to the deer as they will be long gone before they can be found in an 8x or 10x scope. :shock:

01-08-2010, 08:39 PM
most of the boxes in my reloading room are red, hornady interlocks [one interbond]
if you don't wanna chase a deer,elk whatever.
you need to use a bullet that'll do the most damage on it's way through.
if you have time to make a behind the shoulder shot the sierras are very good.
but for the unknown shots and penetration with good expanson i'll take the interlock everytime.
the interlocks at 2700-2850 [yeah the 308-30-06 7x57 reloading range.]
perform very reliably and consistently.
i have no choice but to hunt a variety of terrain as the deer can be found across a canyon, in the brush, or even in the open sage brush where i hunt so need a reliable short long range bullet.
so i hedge my bets by going to the accuracy side as close to the middle of the road as i can get.
so far it's worked for me on deer from 20 yds to 250 yds, and elk at just under 50 and just over 150.
my wife uses them at 2750 in her x57 i use them in my ackley and i.c.l. chambered x57 at 2850.
and my girl uses them in her x57 and 7.65 argie at 2800 and 2700.
no complaints from either end.

03-01-2010, 10:18 PM
Interbonds are my first choice, btsp interlocks gamekings and accubonds my second. I definately stay away from the fragmenting type. Those folks down in Grand Island, NE sure do make quality ordinance.

Wayne Smith
03-26-2010, 06:48 PM
For thin skinned animals like deer all you need is a cup and core bullet. Serria, Speer, Remington, Winchester, etc. all make them. If I'm going to take a chance on a bear I'd look at better hanging together/penetrating bullets such as the interlocks and accubond, etc. I like heavy for caliber at slow velocities (30-30) and lighter for higher velocity rounds.

04-21-2010, 01:21 AM
Speed kills!

04-21-2010, 02:54 PM
No, energy transfer kills. Speed must be matched to the range and the construction of the bullet. Too much speed and you get a neat little hole or an ugly surface wound and a lingering death. Cast bullets manage do a wonderful job of putting down deer at less than 2000fps. For that matter, so does a pickup truck at 45mph and in some parts of the country kill more deer than hunters.

06-13-2010, 05:53 PM
if you need more power get a bigger gun.
i like 150s in 30 cals 138s in 7mm 110- 130 in 270 and so on

06-07-2014, 01:08 PM
Speed definitely kills but does it do it the way you want it done?

30-40 Kraig
06-09-2014, 07:39 PM
I guess my first pick would be to use the bullet that shoots best out of a gun. A sure shooting bullet gives me confidence to hit where I am aiming. That is more important to me. That being said I will not use a hollow point bullet on anything deer sized and bigger. (Deer are the biggest animal in our area). I want to make sure that my bullet penetrates bone if I hit forward of the ribs on a deer. Hate to see a light hollow point hit the shoulder and wound a deer. I recently noted that I liked the 120 gr bullet for my 260 rem for deer and moved up to that size of a bullet from a 100 gr pill that I used for coyotes. Then someone commented that many a deer have been killed by the 95 gr and lighter bullets in the 243 rifles. 243 might be the perfect rifle for deer across a wide area. It is also the smallest caliber allowed in Kansas to be used for deer. I have shot a large doe with my 270 using a 110 gr V Max. It worked but left lots of shrapnel in the meat. I guess all in all the shot placement is more important than the bullet weight.

12-24-2014, 06:08 PM
Eighteen wheelers kill lots of deer too, but I never ate one of those.

12-24-2014, 08:11 PM
s[eer 150gr mag tips in a 30cal going about 2700 usally drops the deer around here faster then the heavier or faster bullets. in 25 cal most 100gr seem to kill faster then the 115 or 120gr bullets

07-01-2022, 05:48 PM
What the Heck!?!
Bot attack!?!
No moderator, I take it.

07-01-2022, 05:50 PM
I was just getting into versifier's perspective when these funny posts of unreadable text occurred