Hello, I am new to the board and would like to ask for opinions on a couple calibers, but first a little background history about me and what I want from a rifle.
We do quite a bit of long range shooting in the off season and some long range hunting as well. We have been taking a trip out west every year since 1994. We usually hunt antelope and mule deer with the emphasis being to make long range shots. We use the following calibers right now: 25/06, 7mm rem. mag., 7mm STW, .300 win. mag, and a .300 RUM. The ultra mag is the only one we have yet to take something way out there with. By way out there, I am talking from 500 to 1000+ yards. My longest kill to date is 1098 yards on a mule deer with the STW. Now on to the questions!
Accuracy is not the problem, provided the wind is calm, ENERGY IS! I am looking for a caliber that will have enough energy to CLEANLY harvest game at 1000 yards. my initial ideas are either a .338 RUM or a .375 RUM. in a fluted satinless sendero. Lets hear what you think!
Location: The rifle range, or archery range or behind the computer in Alaska
Re: Need some input PLEASE!
Just my 2 cents, With a standard 300 weatherby mag or win mag or even the new short mags you can deliver 1000+ FPE at 1000 yards with a 190 grain MK. A 44 mag has about the same at the muzzle. Would you feel comfortable with that?? By the way this would be at 1500'ASL at 59 degrees F. and 3000 FPS starting. The win mag is capable of 3100+ FPS with this bullet. Higher altidude only gets better. Unless you hunting in freezing conditions. The 180 Barnes XBT at 3100 will yeild 1100 FPE at 1000 yards in the same conditions. The wby mag or the Ultra mag would do even better. How about the 30-378?? McMillan makes a custom version that will deliver .5 MOA and 3600 FPS with 180 grain bullet.
Long range shooting is a process that ends with a result. Once you start to focus on the result (how bad your last shot was, how big the group is going to be, what your buck will score, what your match score is, what place you are in...) then you loose the capacity to focus on the process.
Huntaholic, you have pretty much described the effect of game shot at long range with conventional or premium bullets. At low impact vel, even when the "energy" numbers look good, there is little effect on game.
Problem is simply not enough vel to open up the bullets or bullets too tough for the impact vel. As S1 suggested, try the 162gr Amax at 3300fps. This is a fragile bullet at high impact vel. but becomes a "controlled expansion" bullet as vel slows down. Very high BC and a very accurate bullet.
Conventional softpoints need about 2000fps to work well. Premium bullets like Barnes X need a whole bunch more (my guess is 2400fps and up). Some match and varmint bullets, as well as the Nosler BT and Hornady SST expand readily down around 1500fps.
I was there when a very large moose was taken with a 120gr BT launched from a 7mm rem mag. Conventional wisdom would say that this combo is nuts. Bullet weight too light and too fragile. However, when the bullet hit way out there, it had slow down enough to expand and penetrate to the offside shoulder. Moose was down in a couple of steps. Live weight estimated to be over 1000lbs. 62" spread in the antlers.
How far? Not sure as this was before I had rangefinders. However, it took us over 20 min to walk there over fairly flat ground. Would guess that it was at least 750yds.
Speed up the muzzle vel., or use a more fragile bullet. The shock effect is not going to be there but well placed shots will take game down quickly.
I have a 300RUM in the works with a 35" barrel. It should launch the 240's at 3100fps or so. The impact vel at 1000yds and beyond should still be sufficient to cause expansion. There certainly is enough "energy". Refer to DC for his results on game with a similar and larger combo.
Thanks alot guys! There is definately some useful information there! UNLIKE the response I got to the same post on accuratereloading.com!
With my .300 win mag, I am using 83.5 gr. of H-1000, and a 180 gr. sierra SBT. I have yet to take an animal past 625 yards with it, but it does ok to there! What would you suggest I try in it? perhaps a 180gr A-max?
In the .300 Winnie, I'd look at a 200gr Sierra MK. I think the increased weight will prove helpful, and the 200gr you can still push fast enough to be comfrotable in the event that conditions become a tad breezy. A 180gr bullet would work, but 200grs would do better for you. If you read through enough threads here, you'll take note that match-style bullets are often used at the longer ranges; this is good common sense stemming from years of experience by a great many. Yes, I have also used the match-style bullets, and yes, they do work. I wouldn't recommend quartering shots, and shooting at armored deer <this was covered in another post, where we discussed options for when mammals return fire>. [img]images/icons/rolleyes.gif[/img]
Seriously, now, I think the best thing to consider would be upping the weight a little. 150grs for 7mm is...a little light for long-range work. Don't get me wrong, sometimes they work great; percentage-wise, you'll have less failures with the heavier bombs, and your energy figures go up <this is associated with a round that delivers that energy, and creates a fair amount of penetration.> I have seen whitetail deer nailed at very close range run for a considerable distance <over two-hundred yards in some instances>, and later autopsy reports pointed to the fact that he could've gone along with the tin man to Oz--he didn't have a heart, either. So...<palms up> Try those bigger match bullets. In 7mm, I'd try the 160-168 grainers, in .300, I'd try 190+, with 200 probably being my first pick. For the 300 Ultra, 220gr minimum. Hope it helps!
PS everyone's a decent fellow on this board; sometimes we mess with each other just to get Len and the other moderators' attention, but you can usually count on good replies from good people. [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]