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Berger 210 VLD on Black Bear - Field Report

 
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  #8  
Old 06-18-2008, 10:23 PM
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Thanx for the report. Although I have never used the VLD's I can say that your experience mirrors pretty much all the ones I have read about.
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  #9  
Old 06-23-2008, 02:50 AM
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I use the 210 VLD's in a 300 WM. - around 2870 fps.

I've taken several large Gemsbuck bulls - virtually nothing in 30 cal (other than monlithics) exits them anyway, but I've had VERY quick and satisfying results.

Smaller animals I have had some exits. Generally anything through the shoulders on larger game there are none - through the ribs you may get exits.

I shot an Eland Bull (+/- 1000lbs) wounded by another hunter in the shoulder at about 10 yards. Eland are notoriously heavy in the shoulders (almost like a back to front buck!), anyhow, he was dead in seconds. I don't recommend them for that, but it worked.

I take broadside or quartering towards shots only so as to get into the chest cavity quickly.

The Berger bumpf says the sharp nose results in 2-3 inches of pepentration and then "BOOM". It works well for me.

Not saying you are wrong or on the wrong track here, just sharing my experience.

Wouldn't use them in thick bush where I may need a bunch of penetration prior to reaching the vitals.
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Old 06-23-2008, 07:20 AM
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Thanks for in info. I have never shot anything that close, but as fo my experience with VLD's, having killed a very nice 6x7 Elk last fall @ 250 (broke both shoulders no exit) folded him up. A nice adult Buck Muly @ 360 bang flop , 2 Axis bucks, a Black Buck, and a very nice Aoudad Ram @ 205 (high shoulder and a 1" hole through the heart and out the other side). All in the last 8 months with 210 Bergers @ 3050 MV from my 30-378. I am very pleased with them. Plus they really seem to shoot very well for me at long range too. I too am just stating my experiences and agree with what "LRHWAL" said about exit and brush and like stated, I have never shot them at closer than 50 yds.

Jeff
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Old 06-23-2008, 05:22 PM
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Thanks for contributing your experiences. Very interesting to me since I'm pretty interested in using them for long range shots at big game where the bullet velocity will have slowed quite a bit prior to impact.

Here's another bit of information on the construction of these bullets that I didn't realize. Maybe everybody else already knows this, but here goes. Earlier this spring (5 weeks ago) I fired two of the 210 VLDs into the side of a vertical bedrock cliff from 812 yds away. I had a cardboard target propped in front of the cliff. There was still a lot of snow on the ground at that time. Well last weekend I went up to set a target up in front of the cliff again and I found a small circular piece of copper jacket laying on the ground surface just beneath the point of impact from the two shots I'd fired 5 weeks early. Upon closer examination I realized it was the base of the copper jacket - a little larger than 30 caliber in diameter. What blew me away was how thin this jacket material is! I didn't try to measure its thickness with a micrometer since it wasn't exactly flat, but I would estimate the jacket is about as thick as 2 sheets of Xerox copier paper. No more than three sheets of paper. The jacket material is literally paper thin. So the composition of the lead itself is basically what controls the rate of expansion / fragmentation of these VLD bullets. This would explain why they appear to expand so reliably, even at the lower velocities associated with long range.

By the way, I completed processing the black bear and nothing new to report there. I didn't find any sizeable pieces of lead or jacket material. But numerous small pieces of lead, and a few small pieces of copper jacket. I would describe the bullet's upset as shrapneling, rather than expanding at 3000 fps.
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Old 06-23-2008, 05:33 PM
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Based on this information I wonder if there is a realistic concern of consuming minute lead frags/lead dust particles, etc. when eating biggame animals shot with this bullet.


Quote:
Originally Posted by phorwath View Post
Thanks for contributing your experiences. Very interesting to me since I'm pretty interested in using them for long range shots at big game where the bullet velocity will have slowed quite a bit prior to impact.

Here's another bit of information on the construction of these bullets that I didn't realize. Maybe everybody else already knows this, but here goes. Earlier this spring (5 weeks ago) I fired two of the 210 VLDs into the side of a vertical bedrock cliff from 812 yds away. I had a cardboard target propped in front of the cliff. There was still a lot of snow on the ground at that time. Well last weekend I went up to set a target up in front of the cliff again and I found a small circular piece of copper jacket laying on the ground surface just beneath the point of impact from the two shots I'd fired 5 weeks early. Upon closer examination I realized it was the base of the copper jacket - a little larger than 30 caliber in diameter. What blew me away was how thin this jacket material is! I didn't try to measure its thickness with a micrometer since it wasn't exactly flat, but I would estimate the jacket is about as thick as 2 sheets of Xerox copier paper. No more than three sheets of paper. The jacket material is literally paper thin. So the composition of the lead itself is basically what controls the rate of expansion / fragmentation of these VLD bullets. This would explain why they appear to expand so reliably, even at the lower velocities associated with long range.

By the way, I completed processing the black bear and nothing new to report there. I didn't find any sizeable pieces of lead or jacket material. But numerous small pieces of lead, and a few small pieces of copper jacket. I would describe the bullet's upset as shrapneling, rather than expanding at 3000 fps.
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  #13  
Old 06-23-2008, 06:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Varmint Hunter View Post
Based on this information I wonder if there is a realistic concern of consuming minute lead frags/lead dust particles, etc. when eating biggame animals shot with this bullet.
Amazing what the do gooder know it alls get people to worry about. My grandfathers grandfather and beyound, my grandfather, my father and myself have been eating game shot with lead shot and lead bullets forever and I have no worries what so ever.
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  #14  
Old 06-23-2008, 08:14 PM
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I'm certain more lead exposure is worse and less exposure is better, but whether the periodic ingestion of some lead equates to any measureable ill health effects is probably hard to quantify, even for a trained epidemiologist. I do know that lead toxicity is of greatest concern with the developing brains of toddlers and children.

Beyond that issue, I did have to trim away substantially more meat from surfaces surrounding the wound channel than would have been necessary with Nosler Accubonds, which is what I've shot my last 4 black bears with. Since I hunt black bears for the meat more than the hide, I'll be taking broadside shots behind the front shoulders through the lungs when using the Berger VLDs at longer ranges. This is my preferred shot no matter which expanding bullet I'm using. It typically results in the least amount of blood/bullet shot meat damage.

For close up shots, I'll normally have a different type of bullet available. It just happened that I didn't have any other bullets loaded on this trip. A new rifle with a new bullet and load combo and I hadn't yet loaded up or shot any Accubonds, BTs, or TSXs.
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