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Thoughts on SST's(long)

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Old 12-09-2003, 09:58 AM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: south carolina
Posts: 53
Re: Thoughts on SST\'s(long)

A bullet in the neck should do the job unless the bullet just catches the the fringe. My friend does not take poor shots and rarely misses. He is also a very good tracker(he owns and runs a hunting lodge) and also has several four-legged trackers as well. We could find no evidence that the two bucks died from their wounds. I still believe a larger wound channel would have been lethal and we would have found them.
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Old 12-09-2003, 10:37 AM
Posts: n/a
Re: Thoughts on SST\'s(long)

You don't need a tough bullet if you take neck/head shots. If I were shooting for a small target (head/neck) I would want a fragmenting bullet just in case I was a little off.
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Old 12-09-2003, 02:30 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Western Pa.
Posts: 24
Re: Thoughts on SST\'s(long)

Just so happens I have a picture of the 154SST and a caribou shot at 335 yds. Hope it helps.

[ 12-09-2003: Message edited by: ol_spark ]
Exactly how far is that Scotty??
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Old 12-09-2003, 06:25 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: La Grange, TX
Posts: 222
Re: Thoughts on SST\'s(long)


I never said your friend was a bad shot. I'm a fair shot and have muffed a few of my own. The head actually provides more bone to initiate expansion than the neck does. There is a lot of area in the neck that will show a hit and even knock a deer down and yet be either non lethal or not lethal till a few days or more have passed.

Its just a fact that the bullet must have missed the spinal column and or all of the major blood vessels. Or the tracking job was poor. Sometimes we simply cannot find what we shot. Its a sad fact of the process that we try to avoid as much as we can.

I've guided a number of years and on the place we guided we harvested on average about 350 deer. I've seen more neck shot deer simply paralyzed and had to be finished that it sorta makes me sick. From many rounds.

I agree with Harv that shooting for the head or neck I'd prefer a more frangible bullet. It helps if you err a bit in placement. But I've done lots of severe damage to the heads with 180X in the 300 wtby. Enough to say either the bullet expands very well or the velocity is enough to basically take the off side of the head away.

Respectfully, (typing often leads to mis- informed communciations)
Get as close as you can, but utilize your skills as needed.
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Old 12-09-2003, 06:47 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: La Grange, TX
Posts: 222
Re: Thoughts on SST\'s(long)

Hey heres an interesting one for everyone while we are on bullet performance. 145 pound WT buck. Broadside 113 yards. 30 cal Sierra 165 BTSP at 2847 fps. Shot hits 6th rib from front going in about mid height, hits 7th rib going out. Both holes 30 cal in size. This bullet normally expands in my buddies rifle and on this size deer. (can not get X bullets to shoot in this rifle) Deer is knocked down(probably mostly a slip from the surprise) and leaves a few spots of lung blood. We searched(5 folks) for over 6 hours for that buck. Assumed it was lost. It appears 2 weeks later non the worse for wear. Its shot in the head so we know exactly what happened from the first shot. A bit of cartilage type tissue forming in one lung but nothing much of anything else. Deer did not have fever. Did not indicate having been hit before.

Its one of those things where the shot was in the right place but we thought we failed in our tracking job. I've seen it once before with a 45 ACP ball round through the lungs of a spike. Killed about a week later non the worse for wear.

Even though I said I woulnd't get into the bullet part, I guess I lied. And I don't doubt anyone of you a bit, but the only bullet I"ve seen that has performed exactly the way its advertised and been lethal every time its shot from Africa to Alaska, Canada and the US is the family of FS and especially the X bullet(if you have a rifle that will shoot them)

Sorry to have gotten into stirring folks up too much.

Get as close as you can, but utilize your skills as needed.
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Old 12-10-2003, 02:47 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Mukilteo, WA
Posts: 1,091
Re: Thoughts on SST\'s(long)

Jeff, what load did you use for the 802 yd shot? Was the hit right in the lungs or did you take out some bone?

Given my testing, I personally don't trust the X's to open up quickly at low velocity if you stick one right between the ribs.

In this test:

The "low velocity impact" X bullet on the left barely started expansion by the time it was stopped and left a very small wound channel. The Scirocco and AccuBond, however, opened up quickly.

Those are just my observations, but it is enough for me to favor plastic tipped bullets (or MK's, of course) for that type of shot. I'm interested in hearing more about your experiences with X's on the subject.
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Old 12-10-2003, 06:53 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: La Grange, TX
Posts: 222
Re: Thoughts on SST\'s(long)

Jon A

Nice pics! Seeing those just jarred me a bit. I'm different than a lot of folks on these pages. The X does just what it needs to for me. It expands. Sometimes more, sometimes less depending on speed etc.. But it will always penetrate if I hit bone that I don't intend to. I'd rather have the caliber size penetration(a 338 is a decent size hole already) than to have the bullet come apart. The only thing I have used the plastic tips for is devastating head shots. But if I make a mistake with them and hit a shoulder(if I was using them for that) or have to take a raking shot, then I"m either destroying too much meat or not penetrating the way I need to.

Lets just say my philosophy may be a lot different than most. And its probably because I'm mostly a bowhunter. So I expect to trail. And I really enjoy the trailing portion as much as the other aspects. I'm dejected when they fall in sight.

That being said I used a 225 X flat base for 802. First shot was about 3 inches behind the front leg about half way up. It got both lungs and a major lobe of the liver. The lung holes were about thumb size. The liver hole was a bit larger with many more fractures. You know how liver reacts to bullets. The bull went about 20 yards in bad shape and stopped again. My spotter thought that the first shot was pretty low in the cavity so I held a bit higher and that shot broke the spine. Both were pass throughs. The cavity was full of blood.

2nd bull was with 230 FS that my friend shot. Only about 400 yards but the first shot hit the shoulder high. Plenty of expansion. Exit was about the size of a quarter. He got up again as I expected( I was spotting and telling him what to do) and the second shot broke his spine. A bit more expansion. Both total pass throughs. He shot him a 3rd time when we got there with my 44 airweight and 180 jhps. That one did not pass through. Lesson learned there. Use larger pistol bullets.

I get into a lot of shooting testing 223 ammo at 600 plus yards. I get lots of questions as to why something works or doesn't. I'm not that type of person. If it works great and I use it. I don't pay much attention to a chrono. I rely on the results of the groups on paper and the scores they net.

Its the same reason I use the X mostly. I dont' know why, but for me I've had no failures with them ever. I've had failures with lead tipped rounds. And with plastic tipped rounds. So I end up using what works. Same in my bowhunting. Failures with all the new open on impact type heads. Cut on contacts have always worked the best and so I keep using those heads.

Differences keep the world turning right.

Get as close as you can, but utilize your skills as needed.
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