Thank you for all the info and welcome to the forum.
I have not used your VLD for game yet, but have used SMK's, A-Max's and Richard's Wildcat bullets with success. I have a 7mm Rem Mag Imp in a rear grip MOA Maximum specialty pistol that likes your 180 grainers and hope to use it this year.
Any advice for the 140 grain in the 6.5 as regards to minimum impact velocity? Same question for the 7mm 180 grain.
Ernie (xphunter) "The Un-Tactical"
This is a part of a story I posted back in May about the 6mm 115 Berger and the 240 Wby. The bullet penetrates like crazy and blows big holes as it goes through.
So, we were sitting there looking at the two pigs down in the clearing when pigs showed up in the corner at 550 yards. I spun up the scope dial and swung the barrel around and the crosshairs lined up on a very big pig. All of the stone mason work I had done laying the flat rocks for the gun rest was going to pay off big time. Another pig came walking into the corner and went past the big pig and then turn back and went behind him. Thus there were now two pigs lined up but were facing opposite directions. The 240 Wby with the 30 inch barrel gives the 115 Berger a very good launch and the Berger will penetrate a very long ways even at ranges past 800 yards. I felt very sure that at a measly 550 yards I could kill the front pig and break the hind quarters down on the back pig and then finish it. Lacking any experience with pigs I did not realize exactly how strong a pig was with just its front legs working.
I now had the crosshairs on the front pig who was facing left and the bullet was going to pass through him and hit the hind quarters of the back pig who was facing right. Finally Chris gave the command to fire and I broke the trigger. The front pig was DRT and just flopped over as the 115 Berger passed through him and the back pig was now broken down as planned and just needed a finishing shot. Therein was where things got interesting and because I shoot a mauser single shot action, I have to spend a little time off of the scope, carefully placing the next round so the rim is under the extractor or else I will get a jam. So when I got back on the scope there was some confusion as to where the pig was and I wound up shooting a bush which refused to fall over and die. I got to laughing and joking about killing the bush and after a short conversation with the spotter I figured out where the pig really was and launched a round and it is unclear where it landed but the pig continued to crawl toward the trees so I reloaded again and continued to laugh and make jokes and try to shoot at the same time. I got the crosshairs settled and was starting to squeeze when Rimfire shot. I saw a puff of white limestone dust out past the pig and believed he had missed, so I finished the squeeze and even as deaf as I am and with earmuffs on I heard the Berger impact hard. So the big sow finally fell on over, deader than dead, and there were no more pigs to shoot. Plus it was now dark. Fun was over!!!!!
Autopsy of body parts of the second pig showed my first bullet had not only passed through the first large hog but had broken the rear quarters of the sow and still exited that pig too. There was a small piece of the jacket found in the exit hole so there wasn’t much bullet left when it exited the second pig, but just enough. Rimfires’s LSR 300WSM with the 175 SMK had broken a rib going in and another rib exiting and then caused the puff of chalk dust I had seen. My last bullet had hit the neck right on the leading edge of the shoulder and apparently hit something pretty hard being as I found a piece of the lead core in the wound channel.
Trying to make a “reverse twofer” on hogs at 550 yards might not have been the most intelligent idea I have ever had, but it was some of the most fun I have had in a long time. I might have shot a little better too if I could have quit laughing.
i've seen 2 examples where the sierra failed on game.both shots were under 100 yards. both blew up with no/very little penetration.i used to hang out in Saskatchewan and spend 5 weeks hunting deer.it was with an outfitter so you got to see a little bit of everything.first was a mule deer that wasn't supposed to be shot, but he nailed him right on the shoulder blade. i know this because 3 hours and 2 miles later we were looking at each other as he laid under a spruce tree and my boss stuck him with his yellow handled knife as he tried to get away.a couple small pieces of whatever went inside the ribs but most of the bullet blew up on the outside.
the second example was an impact on the middle of the backbone,as the deer( a 170 whitetail) was quartering away. bullet hit the backstrap about the bottom of the backbone and never even broke it's back. made about a tennis ball sized hole in the strap, but again, never even went through the backbone. just pieces of jacket all over. after seeing these 2 examples it was hard for me to put trust in match bullets for game.
both examples were shot with a 270 and were under 100 yards. to be honest, i'll never own a 270. not saying there's anything wrong with it, but the bad taste will always be there.
my personal opinion is not to use match bullets smaller than 30 caliber for big game and always the heavy per caliber bullets.
The info on the Bergers is great. I like their bullets in .223 and 7mm, but haven't hunted with them. In 1985, I started hunting with Sierra MKHP, but only in .30 cal. Have only killed whitetails with them, but have absolute confidence in them. Have used .300 WM, .300 H & H, and .30 x .378, all with 190 gr MKHP's, and all lung shots. Some were knocked down and stayed down, some ran 20 feet - 20 yards. Don't know if they went down and got up or not; enough recoil and muzzle flash that I don't see the hit or the immediate aftermath. Longest shot was 280 yds, shortest was 100 yds on a hard-running buck. My brother saw that hit and said he was in mid-air, and looked like he was hit by a freight train.
Nearly every page in the Sierra manual says that MK's are not recommended for hunting. I wouldn't hunt thick skinned or heavy boned game with them (except for hogs), but I suspect that my 300 gr MKHP .338 x .378 load could handle Black bear or even Elk very well.
Last time I checked, Berger wasn't making anything bigger than .30 cal.
Good thread, Tom
Texas State Rifle Association Life Member
NRA Endowment Life Member
A big fast bullet will beat a little fast bullet every time