Thank you everybody who gave me feedback in my lead-free bullet thread. I went on a backpack hunt last weekend and ended up getting a shot at a mere 36 yards (who says you can't swing an 11lb. long range rig like a quail gun!).
But here is the deal: I have killed the last 10 deer with a lung shot from a 300 mag at betweeen 100 and 250 yards; they have ALL made one lurch and then piled up. I shot this one (the first time I have tried lead-free bullets on game), with a 150 grain TSX out of a 27" barrelled, 3.600", 300 Win. Mag.
I made a perfect double-lung shot right behind the elbow; at the shot the deer took off as if not even hit. I was shocked! There was only a tiny bit of lung material on the ground, but luckily it had rained and I was able to track by following hoof prints (he went about 200 yards). The exit wound was about the size of a dime (a Partition or Accubond will leave nasty quarter sized hole with lots of lung and blood all over the ground).
I am concerned that if lead free bullets do not "dump 'em" at near muzzle blast range, how would they perform at long range?
I've made a couple of posts on this subject and this confirms what I think many of us have learned. Unless you are hunting elephants or Mack trucks, I see few adantages and many disadvantages to using these bullets.
There might be a difference between an animal that is unaware of the hunter, usually drops on the spot, and an animal that is aware of the hunter, usually runs a distance.
I have often had animals that I have shot at close range run off while most of the animals I have shot at long range, 300 + have dropped on the spot with a similar hit.
I put it down to the animal at close range being a bit hyped up, with a bit of adrenaline pumping around taking longer to realise it is dead.
What did the lungs look like when you gutted the animal? I have seen the same thin happen at close range with a 300 WM using lead tip spire point bullets. That time it was a non recovered white tail. An animal can go a long ways at full speed with devastated lungs in the 20 seconds it takes them to die.
It is hard to say. I have shot more at close range than long range by far. At close range shots through the boiler room have more often than not have resulted 100 yrds give or take travel after the shot. Get them out past 200yrds and they generally don't move much. That's been my experience anyway.