Re: Hornady 165 SST vs Nosler 165 BLT Hunting
Based on everyone's experience here with the plastic tipped bullets, both NBT/BST and the SST, the takeaway seems to be that at short range shot placement is critical. Bullet expansion seems unpredictable at short range, sometimes causing pass throughs with insufficient damage, sometimes the bullet over expanding or blowing up, dependig on the shot angle and the bullet path through the animal.
So I think our advice to fellow shooters of these bullets should be something like:
1. At longer ranges aim where you wish and the bullet will do its job
2. At short ranges aim for the neck/head if broadside or from behind
3. At short range, if head on, aim at the base of the neck.
#3 is a DRT shot with the .30 150gr NBT/BST at any range. If you hit the spine s/he is DRT. If you hit a little low the round will tuck under the spine and between the shoulders, travelling the length of the body cavity, turning the organs to bloody jello. I killed a medium-large doe (140 lbs gutted) with this shot placement at less than 30 yds in a howling, pouring rainstorm in the mid 90s. She folded instantly, dead before she hit the ground I'd guess. After I hung her in the garage and skinned her I found the remains of the mangled jacket/base, lead missing, in the flesh in front of the right hip. The downside to this cavity shot is the bloody mess you have when gutting them. With head/neck shots I only get a little blood on my gloves during gutting. With this one I had blood up to my elbows.