berger in brush country

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by rscott5028, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    Has any study been done with the effects of weeds, leaves, twigs on Berger hunting VLDs?

    I'm shooting 180g Bergers in a 7mm Rem Mag.

    Obviously these bullets excell in long range open country and there are other bullets/cartridges better suited to brush country. But, I was wondering whether broom weed, dove weed, or even a small weesatche twig would trigger expansion and terminal ballistics at the actual target (deer).

    ...and, how the distance from initial contact with such things 1 yd, 10 yds, or farther ahead of the target would make any difference.

    I guess the bottom line is... How much resistance and at what velocity does it take to trigger expansion with these bullets?

    (Sorry if this has already been discussed, but I couldn't find anything.)

    Thanks!
    Richard
     
  2. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    If no study has been done, does anyone have an opinion or rule of thumb?

    thanks!
    Richard
     

  3. Michael Eichele

    Michael Eichele Well-Known Member

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    Any long sleek bullet fired at high velocity will tumble when it contacts even a very small twig. I have never 'tested' this but have seen it when there was a small twig 10" infront of my target. In 10" of travel the bullet impacted sideways. This twig was about the diameter of a toothpick.
     
  4. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Michael!

    I would not have guessed such a radical outcome from something so small and close to the target.

    It would be great to hear from others as to their experiences.

    Thanks all!!!
    Richard
     
  5. peashooter

    peashooter Well-Known Member

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    Hi RScott5028,

    My son-in-law missed a very good Wy. buck when his 180 grain bullet hit a twig 10 yards in front of the deer. Bullets will not plow through twigs, brush or the such.
     
  6. Bravo 4

    Bravo 4 Well-Known Member

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    A good rule of thumb is expect anything to deflect a bullet, and the further from the target your bullets strikes something the more deflection you can expect. Think of it this way- spin a top on a flat surface at really high RPM and barely touch it and watch what happens. Now think about a bullet spinning hundreds of thousands of RPMs and imagine the consequences.
     
  7. RDM416

    RDM416 Well-Known Member

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    I agree with what everyone has said about even small twigs and such causing a bullet to deflect. The thing no one has mentioned is that it really does not matter about the "shape" of the bullet. A Berger is no more likely to deflect than a Barnes or Nosler....... The old wives tale of a round nosed "brush bucking" bullet is just that, an old wives tale.

    The one thing that does make a difference is bullet weight. The heavier the bullet the harder it is for anything to push it around. For example a .224 / 55 grain bullet traveling at 3000 fps will be deflected much more than a .338 / 300 grain bullet traveling at the same speed and hitting the same twig. It is the old "object in motion....." physics thing. The higher the mass the more energy required to move it.
     
  8. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    I guess I was fixated on expansion because some of the high speed videos and dramatizations show Berger bullets fragmenting rapidly on impact. But, I'm guessing it takes a fairly solid hit to trigger that effect. (water jug, ballistic gelatin, deer, elk...) Would a small twig do the same?

    In any case, deflection far ahead of the target would certainly be more of a problem than just in front of it.

    I guess I'm still wondering how much effect weed tops and grass might have such as prone shooting in relatively flat country and how much you need to worry about a clear loophole.

    thanks!
    Richard
     
  9. RDM416

    RDM416 Well-Known Member

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    In my opinion (which is just that!) I think deflection is more likely than the bullet expanding or "blowing up". However, if you hit a large enough twig it certainly could happen.

    That is one of reasons I typically shoot off a tripod for my front rest with shooting sticks or a bipod at the butt end of the stock. I sit either on my butt or short 3 leg stool. This gets me above small grass and such.
     
  10. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    Interesting.
    I never thought about using a bipod at the butt stock.
    Thanks
     
  11. sp6x6

    sp6x6 Well-Known Member

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    I hunted in the alders alot and I used to pack prem. bullets, usually barnes, and my long accuracy load. I am of the school bigger is better also, up to 300 gr.
     
  12. Hntbambi

    Hntbambi Well-Known Member

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    My rule of thumb has always been only take clean shots. It's really a pretty simple concept. lightbulb
     
  13. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    Hntbambi,
    Thanks for the valued feedback and I hear you loud and clear. But, what are each of us comfortable with in terms of a *clean* shot?

    ...50 yds, bench/sandbags, no wind, no dragon flies in the air

    There are a lot of situations ranging from target practice to high dollar trophy hunting.

    With targets, you have the opportunity to setup the shot as you like.

    If I run up on some wild hogs, I'm taking the shot even if there is some interference (provided that there's no safety concern ...for humans anyway). Those things are a huge pest here.

    I tend to be a lot more conservative with other game.

    Even so, terrain and situations vary from NM pronghorns to Cape Buffalo.

    Then again, you have law enforcement, personal defense, and millitary applications where you might have to shoot through glass or something.

    The feedback has been all good. And, I've searched around and found some ad hoc studies, but nothing definitive/scientific. I guess the number of variables are too great.

    So, clean shot is the best policy whenever possible. It just doesn't cure my curiousity.

    I suppose the millitary has a lot of info. If those guys miss, the prey may well shoot back.

    thanks all!!!
     
  14. rscott5028

    rscott5028 Well-Known Member

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    ohhh yeah... I've read where Barnes TSX will drill through a pine tree and still kill game. (that's not coming directly from Barnes, it was just a guy on the internet)

    But, I think the general concensus is that most bullets of the same design are equally susceptible to deflection.

    There even seems to be some evidence to suggest that large bullets may really be no less susceptible to deflection than small ones. ...in spite of the basic inertia/mass in motion physics argument