Don't get me wrong I would like the bullet to expand as long as it will penetrate deep enough all the time. I have yet to shoot a solid bullet that really wowed me with its accuracy. I am testing some in the near future though that show some promise. I believe that the failure of non expanded bullets to do the job is a result of not hitting bone or penetrating vital organs. Alot of people shot recover the animal gut it out looking at damage to the organs quickly then look in the chest cavity to see the entrance and exit wound properly place and write the lack of killing power up to bullet performance. I believe that on closer inspection of the organs will find that most people shoot too high for a heart hit and many times only hit one lung. Even though placement was really good bullets don't always penetrate the organs like we think.
During the thousands of hours of SWAT training I have attended over the years the ability to incapacitate a deadly aggressor is a hotly debated subject. In the hundreds of shooting reports, autopsies, real shootings and video I have seen one thing is perfectly clear, you can count on nothing 100% of the time to work. A side from that the the highest % shot is to the CNS this requires penetration. Next in line is multiple penetrations of organs that bleed alot this doesn't include lung only hits as they take away the ability to put air in the blood and really don't produce the serious bleeding effect we are looking for. (They are great for tracking because they blow alot of the blood loss that they do produce from the animal.) Gunshots to a single lung hit are usually recoverable. Hits to the heart where 1 or more chambers are penetrated seldom are recoverable and will usually make the subject passout from lack of blood pressure in short order. Hits that penetrate the heart, lung and spine drop them like magic but this is a small target.
Back to animal engagements, shooting to the high shoulder (but not to high) is my prefered shot some like this some don't. Like all things it is not perfect there is an area with the HSS that the bullet can penetrate the shoulder but not the spine or the lungs, this is a small window though and you have still broken up the shoulders. In my mind the HSS on a deer for instance is a circle of only about 4-5 inches for maximum effect. Hitting this circle requires acccuracy and penetration both. The hit produces bullet fragments along with bone fragments that perforate the organs of the chest cavity. Is it perfect ..... No doese it work 100% of the time .... No Does it work a very high % of the time .... Yes. But lets look at the 2 shots when placement is not perfect. Take the crease shot if the heart is missed (easy to do) we now are counting on the lungs to not get air into the blood if by chance only one lung is hit well or one only partially collapses we now have a slow bleeding animal still getting air in the blood and it will be a long day. If the high shoulder shot goes less than perfect one of 2 things will happen the shoulders will be broken and the chest cavity will not be effected enough but the animal is now imobile. If you miss the shoulder mark and hit back you are in the crease back at the single / double lung issue. Lung shots tend to be more effective with fragmenting bullets but if you miss the mark with them and hit the shoulder you may have a 3 legged 2 lunged animal and several really long days ahead of you. So that is the best explanation I have for what I do in terms of bullet selection and placement. This is why I have always said for me it is about placement and penetration.
I've been following the post to see where it would go before I replied.
You stated you had a Rem 700 L/A and alot of 200g Wildcat and 180g Berger bullets to shoot. I agree with Shawn on using the 7mm Ultra Mag. You'll get your most velocity out of that case with those bullets, on a Remington action. The gun will get you out to a mile for busting rocks and hitting steel but there is alot more equipment to shooting at extreme distances like this than just the rifle. A accurate range finder. Unless you drop around $2500 for a Russian laser your next best option is a optical coincidence such as a Wild, Barr and Stroud or Zeiss. These will give you an accurate reading but it takes practice using this piece of equipment to know your getting a good reading. The other big piece of equipment is optics. You'll need a top notch scope such as Nightforce or such with higher magnification so you know your hold is true. Then your spotter nneds even better optics so that person can spot the shot that far away. A good set of Kowa, Zeiss, Leica, Swarovski spotters with ample magninfication to see detail at that distance is a must. Once you have all the components to make the shot and spot the shot you'll need someone with the capability to spot the shot. A 200g bullet at 1 mile will leave very little impact at that distance and your spotter needs to have alot of experience watching bullets fly to be able to see a hit. Now once you have all this, Mother Nature jumps in and ruins all your plans. The conditions for this shot need to be next to perfect. To much sun and you'll have alot of mirage, too dark and you won't be able to see the hit. Wind will kill your shot everytime and unless you practice from the same spot everytime and learn the wind patterns for that area and how they effect your bullet flight a 1st shot hit depending on your target size is highly unlikely.
Experience, the proper equipment, conditions and a ton of practice is the key to the extremely long shot. I've been long range shooting and hunting for 20 years now and I've made several 1 mile plus shots on rocks and a woodchuck at 2017 yards. But I've been trying for a 1 mile kill on deer now for close to 10 years and have never had the opportunity to even fire a shot at a deer that far. Some day I may and hopefully I will be ready. My advice to you is practice out to 1000 yards, when you get consistently good at that start stretching your legs a little at a time. A 7mm at 1 mile is very possible but by jumping up to a .338 caliber (or larger) on a large case will make it more practical. You'll find in the end that it will take years and years to honestly be able to make that shot and know your going to hit it.
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I'll go with a 7mm RUM, 30" tube...but a 1/8 or 1/9 for the big wildcats?
Good choice & twist rate. Sometimes it just takes us a while to get to the heart of the matter. Hope you end up with a tack driver because the accurate rifles are the fun ones.
Oh... I just noticed you were asking about the twist rate. Berger says 1:9 or faster for their 180 VLDs. So for the 200 gr Wildcats, you better plan on a 1:8 to 1:8.5 twist. Somewhere in that range. Someone shooting the 200 gr Wildcats should be able to confirm their twist rate, and now that they know you're asking for directioin -> keep watching and someone will sound in...