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Reloading Berger Bullets


berger vld or barnes for long range

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Unread 05-09-2013, 07:43 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: deer park, wa 99006
Posts: 152
Re: berger vld or barnes for long range

Originally Posted by shaymac View Post
im shooting a rem 700 sendero 7mm ultra mag... have you done that seating test yourself if so what was the outcome and how drastic was the results
I'm shooting Berger 185gr vld in my 300wm. My gun likes them at .090" jump
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Unread 05-09-2013, 08:06 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: SW Montana
Posts: 5,804
Re: berger vld or barnes for long range

I shot Barnes bullets for a lot of years believing they were the best combination for meat loss and lethality until I got a chance to hunt a bunch of elk that I could observe every hit and watch it's affects, no flying through timber or cover just open field where you see everything. I came so close to loosing a couple elk because I believed the Barnes bullet was the be all end all of bullets that it made me realize that some of the shots on elk in the mountains that I though were clean misses were likely not, I have a very low tolerance for not recovering a hit animal and I was forced to look for better bullets.
The biggest eye opener for me was when I started shooting Berger, I'd find very little blood shot which as a meat processor rates high on my list of what I want to see, a little more than a Barnes but definitely acceptable and way less than a bonded tipped bullet. The biggest thing was the wound channel inside physically affected whole organs not just cutting something getting lucky, at longer ranges the bullets all exit and leave a blown out hole but it's not a pile of blood shot but just a hole which is acceptable. That kind of bullet performance has brought home more meat for me because I've brought home every animal I hit, and every animal I hit the hit was extremely evident with no guessing if I hit it. Switching to high sectional density bullet of the Berger design was the best thing that every happened to all my hunting, close or far. I don't like shoulder shooting unless I have to but the high section density bullet out perform the light fast copper bullets every day on that shot as well.

The best thing is to just not drink any Koolaid, load up and test different bullets, everything I shoot I have Berger, Matrix, Nosler, Barnes and Cutting edge bullet for and I test them till I settle on the one that delivers balance of performance I'm looking for in meat loss, lethality and accuracy.
"Pain is weakness leaving your body"
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Unread 05-09-2013, 11:53 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: New Mexico
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Re: berger vld or barnes for long range

Originally Posted by X-man View Post
Energy has nothing to do with it.
Barnes bend back rather than expand and use very little energy to in the "expansion" process.
A 2000fps impact kills much the same as a 3200fps hit.
Though 1800fps is the best minimum they will expand at lower speeds...say 1500-1600fps.

A conventional bullet shows a larger difference in the violence of expansion depending on the impact speed.

I know..but if you read what he was saying. He was talking about energy. I am saying that energy doesnt matter whether the animal is big or small. They both get hit with the same amount of energy. I was saying that that was a wrong way to look at it and people shouldnt be confused by it. He wasn't talking about expansion.
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Unread 05-10-2013, 12:58 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Maple Valley, Washington
Posts: 982
Re: berger vld or barnes for long range

My point that a bigger animal gets hit harder than a small animal when the bullet passes ALL THE WAY THROUGH is based on nothing more than physics, specifically, E = 1/2 MV2. If the bullet is still moving after it exits the animal, it still has kinetic energy. That remaining energy WAS NOT delivered to the animal but is instead used on whatever it hits next be that tree, rock or dirt. Since an elk is thicker than a deer and made out of the same basic material a Barnes bullet will spend more time traversing an elk than it will a deer and thus have more loss of velocity and dump more energy in the elk. HOWEVER, the rate of energy dump is governed by the square of the velocity and is not proportional to the thickness of the animal. In other words twice as thick does not equate to twice the energy dump.

If you plot the equation for kinetic energy based on the velocity of the bullet as it slows down in the animal, the energy delivered to the animal is the area under the curve of that plot. Such a plot would only be accurate for a Barnes or similar bullet that loses no mass as it traverses the animal. What you would see on the plot is that more energy is dumped in the first 12 inches of animal than the last 12 inches. If a bullet is losing both mass and velocity like a Berger, the rate of energy delivery is even higher. This appears to align with how these bullets work on animals. The Bergers appear to be the ultimate hammer with a well placed shot and results in a lot of DRT while the Barnes just kill them while preserving the most meat. Iíve yet to lose a animal shot with a Barnes so all is good so far.
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