Long range bullet minimal expansion

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by elkaholic, Sep 11, 2012.

  1. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Hi guys....I've been trying to get everything geared up for elk season next month and wanted to test my newest 208 grain SXR for maximum range expansion. It has already proven to be very accurate at long range. I have found that H20 is a good media to use for determining the LOWEST velocity a bullet will expand at. H20 is VERY hard on jackets, probably because all the force is on the tip with little pressure to hold the side of the jacket. This causes good expansion but also separates the jacket from the core more than flesh would. Given that fact, you can usually add a couple of hundred feet per second on flesh, providing no heavy bones are struck. I chose a known quantity to test against it, the Berger 215 Hybrid. I have found this bullet to be EXTREMELY accurate and there is a fair amount of data around for this bullet already regarding use on game. I used an old 60 qt. cooler with windows cut out of the ends and inserted 45 gal. industrial grade plastic bags. This is an inexpensive way to contain the H20 and not have to shoot thru other material on the way. This gives more consistent bullet to bullet comparison. I backed up the water container with my wet cardboard bullet box to catch the bullets which were pretty much spent and expanded about as much as they were going to be. Most of the shrapnel was easily collected from the bottom of the garbage bag and only the heavy chunks of lead passed thru into the cardboard. I found that I could get two or three tests out of one garbage bag by careful placement before each shot. Bear in mind that this test was intended to show the affects of a narrow meplat with no ballistic tip vs a wide meplat with a ballistic tip. Both bullets have a thin nose section (within a thou or two). You can draw your own conclusions based on the range that you intend to hunt and the intended target. You will notice that the SXR has both a bonded and non-bonded version, for comparison, and also that the necessary velocity for expansion was far less than the Berger. I didn't attempt to shoot the SXR below 1300', but as the pics show, it probably would expand somewhat down to about 1200'. This puts my elk killing range farther than I will shoot at one. With 3000+ fps mv and a .688 b.c., this should make my 30/375 S.I. pretty lethal......Rich DSCF0181.jpg

    DSCF0182.jpg
     
  2. phorwath

    phorwath Well-Known Member

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    The value of the tipped bullets helping to ensure lower impact velocity bullet expansion becomes visibly apparent with these photos.

    Seems like I've read 1800 fps being the minimum recommended velocity to achieve consistent expansion from the Berger hunting bullets in the past. Your testing of their 215 Hybrid is consistent with what I've read. The Hybrid came apart at 1900 fps, but no expansion at 1800 fps.

    Good to know, and thanks for posting the results of your tests with photos.
     

  3. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Paul....as I mentioned, water tends to expand bullets better than flesh so the hunting application should be adjusted accordingly.....Rich
     
  4. Coyboy

    Coyboy Well-Known Member

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    I killed 2 deer last week on Ag damage tags.
    The 140 Berger Hybrids are a poor choice, 460 yards and the out holes were very small. If they hit heavy bone the results were a little better.

    Can't wait for some hunting hybrids.
     
  5. barnesuser28

    barnesuser28 Well-Known Member

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    Nice testing Rich. i would go bonded for elk and up and non bonded for deer down to mice.:D I am going to try to find the lowest velocity the Lrx, CE, Berger OTM, and SMK will expand.
     
  6. Outlaw6.0

    Outlaw6.0 Well-Known Member

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    Riley, if you are still set up to test & are willing, I can send you some 300SMK's that I have uniformed the meplats on. That makes the Meplat larger & could/should create quicker expansion.

    let me know.

    t
     
  7. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    You can't tell by the pics but the unbonded bullets perform much like the bonded on flesh at approx. 2200' and under so bonding for the long range work isn't really necessary (even on elk).......Rich
     
  8. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Jim.....
    That 4 port slab muscle break that I put on my 30/375 S.I. turns a tiger in to a pussy cat:D.......Rich
     
  9. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

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    I'll take 400 of the Non-bonded Please :D I've dug some of the 300gr OTM's out of sand or dirt banks that are fully expanded with an impact velocity of 1300 fps ish at 1900 yards and a 300 SMK just bends like a banana at that range.

    You know every time you post pictures Dad and I have to discuss how to get some Corbin tooling :D
     
  10. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    That's encouraging with the OTM's. One thing about a large, heavy bullet, that inertia will help expansion over a lighter bullet with the same type of jacket. The SMK is the WORST bullet I've tested as far as expansion in a target style bullet. It's not because the jacket is thicker, it is because of the tangent ogive vs a secant; or at least that is what I believe. The angle of entry against the nose has a lot to do with whether it opens or not. The sierra jacket is actually a thou or two thinner than a J4. If you build that S.I., I may donate some SXR's for testing:D......Rich
     
  11. barnesuser28

    barnesuser28 Well-Known Member

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    Outlaw i sent you a pm.
     
  12. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    I need to make a correction on a post I made yesterday concerning the Berger. I got looking at my notes and thought that I had made a major mistake so I did the test over today. It turns out that the Bergers take quite a bit more velocity to open than what I originally posted. Part of the problem was, I was also testing some bullets with drilled out tips and confused some of the data. Below is a pic of todays test. I have also determined that the tips that are drilled out will expand down to at least 1900' (maybe farther). I hope to test this further when I get a chance. By the way, this is in no way a knock on the Bergers because as far as I know, they are not advertised as hunting bullets anyway. Also, it doesn't mean that they won't work as hunting bullets within some parameters....Rich DSCF0183.jpg

    Note the pic of the tip! This is a recurring result with the tip not expanding from the meplat, but rather rupturing, or breaking off, at the end of the hollow cavity where the lead begins. This is around .4" from the meplat which explains the high b.c. of the Berger without needing excessive twist for this long of bullet (i.e. not much weight forward) You can also see that the bullet fired at 1900' was starting to rupture at that point. It appears to me that the pressure entering the hollow point takes a path of lesser resistance which happens to be at the junction of the core and ruptures there rather than expand at the tip?
     
  13. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Here is another pic of the tip phenomenon....... DSCF0177.jpg
    lousy pic, I will post another.
     
  14. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Clearer pic of tip DSCF0178.jpg