Re: Need Help With Grizzly Bear Question
Good Luck Dakor. You can't compare bullet performance on small game vs a big Grizz. Here's a few words from Sir Samuel W. Baker on hunting Dangerous Game.... He was a well known explorer in the 19th Century - died about 1893. Baker wrote this in his book "Wild Beasts & Their Ways..."....
"......There is no more fatal policy in hunting dangerous game than a contempt
of the animal, exhibited by a selection of weapons of inferior calibre. Gunmakers in London of no practical experience, but who can only trust to the descriptions of those who havetravelled in wild countries, cannot possibly be trusted as advisers. Common sense should be the guide, and surely it requires no extraordinary intelligence to
understand that a big animal requires a big bullet, and that a big bullet requires a corresponding charge of powder, which necessitates a heavy rifle. If the hunter is not a Hercules, he cannot wield his club;
but do not permit him to imagine that he can deliver the same knock-down blow with a lighter weapon, simply because he cannot use the heavier.
We lost only last year one of the most daring and excellent men, who was an excellent representative of the type which is embraced in the proud word "Englishman"--Mr. Ingram--who was killed by a wild female
elephant in Somali-land, simply because he attacked the animal with a '450 rifle. Although he was mounted, the horse would not face some prickly aloes which surrounded it, and the elephant, badly but not really seriously wounded, was maddened by the attack, and, charging home, swept the unfortunate rider from his saddle and spitted him with her tusks.
This year (1889) we have to lament the death of another fine specimen ofour countrymen, the Hon. Guy Dawnay, who has been killed by a wild buffalo in East Africa. The exact particulars will never be ascertained,
but it appears that he was following through thick jungle a wounded buffalo, which suddenly turned and was not stopped by the rifle.
I cannot conceive anything more dangerous than the attack of such animals with an inferior weapon. Nothing is more common than the accounts of partially experienced beginners, who declare that the '450 bore is big enough for anything, because they have happened to kill a buffalo or rhinoceros by a shoulder shot with such an inferior rifle. If the animal had been facing them, it would have produced no effect whatever, except to intensify the charge by maddening the already infuriated animal.
This is the real danger in the possession of what is called a " handy small-bore," when in wild countries abounding in dangerous game. You are almost certain to select for your daily companion the lightest and
handiest rifle, in the same manner that you may use some favouritewalking-stick which you instinctively select from the stand that is filled with a variety.
All hunters of dangerous animals should accustom themselves to the use of large rifles, and never handle anything smaller than a '577, weighing 12 lbs., with a solid 650 grain hard bullet, and at the least 6 drams of powder. I impress this upon all who challenge the dangers of the chase in tropical climates. No person of average strength will feel the weight of a 12 lb. rifle when accustomed to its use. Although this is too small as a rule for heavy game, it is a powerful weapon when the bullet is hardened by a tough mixture of antimony or quicksilver. A shoulder shot from such a rifle will kill any animal less than an elephant, and the front shot, or temple, or behind the ear, will kill any Asiatic
I would not recommend so small a bore for heavy thick-skinned game, but the '577 rifle is a good protector, and you need not fear any animal in your rambles through the forest when thus armed, whereas the '450 and even the '500 would be of little use against a charging buffalo.
At the same time it must be distinctly understood that so light a projectile as 650 grains will not break the bone of an elephant's leg, neither will it penetrate the skull of a rhinoceros unless just behind
the ear. This is sufficient to establish the inferiority of small-bores.
I have seen in a life's experience the extraordinary vagaries of rifle bullets, and for close ranges of 20 yards there is nothing, in my opinion, superior to the old spherical hardened bullet with a heavy charge of powder. The friction is minimised, the velocity is accordingly increased, and the hard round bullet neither deflects nor alters its form, but it cuts through intervening branches and goes direct to its aim, breaking bones and keeping a straight course through the animal.
This means death.
At the same time it must be remembered that a '577 rifle may be enabled to perform wonders by adapting the material of the bullet to the purpose specially desired. No soft-skinned animal should be shot with a hardened bullet, and no hard-skinned animal should be shot with a soft bullet.
You naturally wish to kill your animal neatly--to double it up upon thespot. This you will seldom or never accomplish with a very hard bulletand a heavy charge of powder, as the high velocity will drive the hardprojectile so immediately through the animal that it receives nostriking energy, and is accordingly unaware of a fatal wound that it may have received, simply because it has not sustained a shock upon the impact of a bullet which has passed completely through its body.
To kill a thin-skinned animal neatly, such as a tiger, lion, large deer, etc. etc., the bullet should be pure lead, unmixed with any other metal.
This will flatten to a certain degree immediately upon impact, and it will continue to expand as it meets with resistance in passing through the tough muscles of a large animal, until it assumes the shape of a fully developed mushroom, which, after an immense amount of damage in
its transit, owing to its large diameter, will remain fixed beneath the skin upon the side opposite to its place of entry. This bestows the entire striking energy of the projectile, and the animal succumbs to the
tremendous shock, which it would not have felt had the bullet passed through, carrying on its striking energy until stopped by some other object beyond.
I must repeat that although gunmakers object to the use of pure lead for rifle bullets, upon the plea that lead will form a coating upon the inner surface of the barrel, and that more accurate results will be obtained in target practice by the use of hardened metal, the argument does not apply to sporting practice. You seldom fire more than half a dozen shots from each barrel during the day, and the rifle is well cleaned each evening upon your return to camp. The accuracy with a pure leaden bullet is quite sufficient for the comparatively short ranges
necessitated by game-shooting. The arguments of leading the barrel, etc., cannot be supported, and the result is decidedly in favour of pure lead for all soft-skinned animals.
The elephant requires not only a special rifle, but the strongest ammunition that can be used without injury to the shooter by recoil. It is impossible to advocate any particular size of rifle, as it must
depend upon the strength of the possessor. As a rule I do not approve of shells, as they are comparatively useless if of medium calibre, and can be only effective when sufficiently large to contain a destructive
bursting charge. I have tried several varieties of shells with unsatisfactory results, excepting the half-pounder, which contained a burst bursting charge of 8 drams of the finest grained powder.
This pattern was my own invention, as I found by experience that the general defect of shells was the too immediate explosion upon impact....."
GOOD LUCK! [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img]