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Effect of bullet diameter (caliber) on terminal performance.

 
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Old 02-03-2012, 05:12 PM
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Re: Effect of bullet diameter (caliber) on terminal performance.

I see what you mean now also. This may add some to that. Many bullet manufactures use a thinner jacket and softer lead in light for caliber bullets and tougher with the heavies. So that would make a difference. So many factors. I can use my 22's through 257's and drop deer like lightning with lung shots and explosive bullets at 3600-4200 fps. Where my 338-378 wby with a 225 CE would send that deer into high gear for a hundred yards before it went down. So it depends on the animal, bullet construction and velocity. But once you get into the large big game animals like large bull elk and not cows the parameters change and large calibers have more effect on game to carry you to longer distances.
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Old 02-03-2012, 11:16 PM
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Re: Effect of bullet diameter (caliber) on terminal performance.

If you had a very dense medium that would stop both bullets, I would say that it would be pretty equall. But if the medium wasnt so dense (ie. deer) and there was complete pass through on both bullets, I would think that the larger diameter bullet would have more suface area to dump that energy/momentum. But thats speaking purely energy/momentum, if you were to talk penetration (ie. elephant staight on heart shot) the smaller bullet would probably penetrate deeper, more likely reaching vitals. That being said I would never shoot an elephant in the heart... or use a little gun.

Im completey talking out of concept and the only physics knowledge I have comes from high school. Just the way i think of it I guess.
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Old 02-04-2012, 01:45 AM
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Re: Effect of bullet diameter (caliber) on terminal performance.

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Originally Posted by angus-5024 View Post
If you had a very dense medium that would stop both bullets, I would say that it would be pretty equall. But if the medium wasnt so dense (ie. deer) and there was complete pass through on both bullets, I would think that the larger diameter bullet would have more suface area to dump that energy/momentum. But thats speaking purely energy/momentum, if you were to talk penetration (ie. elephant staight on heart shot) the smaller bullet would probably penetrate deeper, more likely reaching vitals. That being said I would never shoot an elephant in the heart... or use a little gun.

Im completey talking out of concept and the only physics knowledge I have comes from high school. Just the way i think of it I guess.
Speaking of elepahants and small bullet penetration, "Karamojo Bell", a famous elephant hunter reportedly killed some 1000+ elephants. He killed 80% or so with the 275 Rigby (7x57 mauser), and the balance with a mix of the .256, 303, and 318. He preferred the brain shot, but took heart shots when required. Critical factors were solid bullets and precise shot placement.
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Old 02-04-2012, 12:00 PM
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Re: Effect of bullet diameter (caliber) on terminal performance.

Elephants can be different story, and the reason Bell used a small caliber is because of his violent experience with large bores (8 bore black powder) and cost factors as was a market Hunter (hunted for profit).

While I am no expert but have killed and seen Elephant killed penetration for a brain shot can work and calibers like the .375 H&H with solids tend to penetrate as well or better than the large doubles say 470 NE. However, the big bores are much better for heart shots and/or shoulders to break them down and of course charges with more margin for error.

As LTLR stated there are minimum caliber and/or enery requirements in most African countries for "dangerous game" for a reason. Today we are sport hunting and not market hunting. I am sure you could kill lion with a 22 mag with proper shot placement but NO I would not try it.

On smaller game I totally agree that the "energy dump" with thin jacketed, small, fast moving bullets tends to take deer sized animals much better. Thousands of antelope are cropped on South African game ranches every year with efficient cartridges like the .243 Win. Personal experience shows that my 25 caliber works much better on small course deer than my fast 30 cals. The 30's tend to pass through, they do the job but 25's dump the animal with proper placement. Again, distance is an issue with the 25 vs the 30.

Bigger game absolutely diameter matters and leave a much better margin for error.

Bottom line its all a trade off and as stated it depends on the distance you intend to shoot and of course size of animal.
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Old 02-04-2012, 12:27 PM
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Re: Effect of bullet diameter (caliber) on terminal performance.

Interesting discussion.

What if a 130 grain bullet of similar construction were fired at similar velocities from 25/6mm/7mm/30/8mm cartridges into gel or other terminal performance material? It would seem to me that the larger the caliber the more violent the results and possibly less penetration due to larger frontal expansion. Dunno though.....
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Old 02-04-2012, 12:55 PM
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Re: Effect of bullet diameter (caliber) on terminal performance.

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Originally Posted by royinidaho View Post
Interesting discussion.

What if a 130 grain bullet of similar construction were fired at similar velocities from 25/6mm/7mm/30/8mm cartridges into gel or other terminal performance material? It would seem to me that the larger the caliber the more violent the results and possibly less penetration due to larger frontal expansion. Dunno though.....
No doubt ballistic gellatin would clearly illustrate the differences. It'd be fun to obtain some and do all kinds of testing. I'd like to test several bullets at extreme ends of the velocity spectrum. Too bad pigs aren't transparent.
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  #14  
Old 02-10-2012, 07:32 AM
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Re: Effect of bullet diameter (caliber) on terminal performance.

One man with one gun say an 06 will do a great job shooting a 30 cal bullet at proper
distance.
Shot placement is the major factor there is no perfect bullet out there the Accubond and PT
are two very good bullets and the PT has killed thousands of elk and deer with the 06.
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