Re: berger 168 vld hunting bullets.
Okay, going to hit a few points in this reply, so here goes:
I use the 180 Bergers (hunting, never tried the target bullets) in my 7 STW, I have almost the opposite problem, at 200 yards or less they tend to blow up on me, usually nice small entrance hole, but blow to shrapnel inside with just tiny fragments of copper and lead found, with no exit. Over that range they tend to seem to expand fairly well, usually exit (judging expansion by exit hole) but if not I either find a mushroomed bullet or the base of the bullet and three or four torn off 'wings.' They however seem to have the least knockdown of any big game hunting bullet I have used (with the possible exception of the SST), I have shot 7 or 8 elk and more deer than that with them (plus several deer and elk I have let other people shoot with my rifle), and the only ones I have knocked down have been either spine or head shots. Most don't even act like they have been hit until they keel over. That being said everything I have shot with them has been killed fairly efficiently, and the few that have had to be blood trailed left an acceptable blood trail. I don't care for the lack of knockdown, but continue to use them because I haven't had a problem with their lethality and really like the long range ballistics and accuracy.
I will never use the SST's again, after shooting an elk six times (starting at 20 yds, it made it to about 50 before I shot it behind the ear and put it down) with 140 SST's in a 270, and finding EVERY ONE of them shed the jacket shortly after entering and the pieces wandered of on tangents. I know four other people that same year who had the same problems with SST's on deer, elk, bear, and in one case cougar. They used a 7mm Ultra, a 270, and 2 300 Win mags; so it wasn't just the one caliber and bullet that had the problem. Now I have one friend who has used them for years in a 7mm Ultra and swears by them, but he bought a bulk lot of them before any of the rest of us bought the ones we all had problems with, so possibly they have changed the design.
If you truly want an absolutely killing bullet that is accurate I would suggest the Grand Slams, I have never found anything that delivers more DRT kills than them, or any bullet that is as accurate in a 270, and practically anything else you feed them to likes them also. They don't however have the downrange ballistics of the true long range bullets. And they are a little hard on the pocketbook.
Oh and just to throw a little gasoline on the fire, I despise the 7mm magnum also. I know I am prejudiced against without good reason, it is a perfectly fine cartridge, but growing up everyone who had a 7mm mag (the 'new' hot caliber at the time) bragged on them unmercifully and swore there was nothing else capable of reliably killing anything from ground squirrels to Kodiaks. I'm a little bit contrary and listening to a bunch of blowhards brag on their 'superior' 7's caused be to develop an absolute hatred for them.