Pics of Berger Bullets NOT Performing????

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by bullridety, Dec 5, 2012.

  1. bullridety

    bullridety Well-Known Member

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    Here is a picture of a 7mm mag 180gr. VLD .659bc bullet that i shot a cow elk with at 626 yards. THIS IS A HUNTING VLD BULLET (NOT TARGET) THAT CAME OUT OF THE ORANGE BOX. I have never bought a target Berger bullet so there is no question that it is a hunting VLD. The bullet was found under the hide of the elk on the opposite side of the rib cage. This elk had ran off and I was lucky enough to get one more shot to eventually put her down. But my question is why didnt this bullet perform? The riflings on this bullet are very apparent and it doesnt look like this bullet was going to expand no matter what! Could just about reload this bullet again! Shot placement was perfect and 7mm mag at 3,025fps should have done a perfect job! Also in the picture is another Berger bullet (300gr. .818bc 338 Lapua cal) that a friend shot a bear with at 1,152 yards. The bear was not recovered but we knew it was a hit! We went over and found the bullet in the hill side and 1 speck of blood. Another question here is why didnt this bullet expand like it should? I eventually switched to my 243 Ackley Improved 115gr. Berger bullet .545bc at 3,153fps and shot my mule deer buck at 731 yards. Perfect Shot placement and bullet performed how it should. It dropped the deer in his tracks and had excellent blood on the ground. Am I just way over gunned or what? I really am disappointed on the performance of my custom 7mm mag not being able to put down an animal with the 180gr. Berger VLD hunting bullet. These are just a few stories of the bullets we actually recovered. But we do have video footage of animals getting hit and just walking off! Maybe someone can explain or share similar stories. I know there is great talk about Bergers performing, but it seems to only happen sometimes and not ALL the time! I just want feedback of simliar stories!
     

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    Last edited: Dec 5, 2012

  2. Wheatgerm

    Wheatgerm Well-Known Member

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    I've heard stories but that's crazy you recovered the bullets... my 185 vlds 30cal didn't perform like I had EXPECTED but all 4 shots had passed threw completly so I was not able to retrieve the bullet. Needless to say the exit holes were bigger than the entry just not as big as I thought they should be. And looking at the blood trail from the first shot it was apparent there was ALOT of damage. I only have one story to share, but I've talked to alot of friends and we've wondered if it would be smarter to aim for bone on our trophies? It should greatly increase chances of maximum bullet performance. Im still not sure if its a great idea or not however..

    Sorry for your bad luck. Ill be watching this thread to see if there is a verdict because I too am interested
     

  3. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

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    Have you contacted Bergers guys yet to give/get some input on the issues?

    IMO if your having issues regularly a guy really has to look at his bullet seating and carrying method for closing the meplat some how.
    How well is your twist rate matched to the bullets?
     
  4. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

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    At only 626 yards a 180 from a 7mag would have plenty of velocity to exit if it did not expand as shown in the pic. I don't know what happened here but something is wrong.

    Both those bullets look just like some I have recovered from dirt from very very long distances at targets, all subsonic, bent noses and flattened on the side as well as a color from tarnish.

    Here are how they perform for me just this season.
    http://www.longrangehunting.com/forums/f19/cmparing-berger-210-vld-215-hybrid-88657/

    I wish I could be of more help but all I can say is I have used them for years now and been there for literally close to 100 kills and never seen anything like you are reporting. I to think you should contact Berger, they will want to help.

    Jeff
     
  5. jeff 300

    jeff 300 Well-Known Member

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    That sucks here and see this. i have killed all kinds of game with as well as my daughter and never had one bit of trouble out of them. I can't believe u where able to find the bullet after shooting it at 1,152 yards wish i could i never get to find any of mine and I'm shooting mostly in the same place. you got some good luck. I would give Berger a call n see what they say.
     
  6. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    Give the Swift Siroccos and Hornady Interbonds or Nosler Accubonds a try.

    I'm with the others, both of those bullets you recovered appear to have been tumblers. My bet is that neither struck any bone on the way through. Hard to believe though that such a bullet didn't exit the cow elk if it didn't strike bone and strike it hard.
     
  7. eddybo

    eddybo Well-Known Member

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    Yep. I have seen many instances of the bergers acting just like standard cup and core bullets, but never anything like that.
     
  8. bullridety

    bullridety Well-Known Member

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    Ya the bullet was matched with the twist rate of the custom gun i built, i two have shot plenty of animals with the Berger bullets and some have performed like they should and some have been a pencil hole in and pencil hole out with no blood trail. Or the animals just walk off hit, but never able to find them! I shoot my guns alot and many different long range setups. All my rounds are seated at the correct depths and only getting a couple fps extreme spread with the Hodgon powders i use (Retumbo and H1000). My father shot a bull this year at 705 yards with the 210gr. Berger in a 300 ultra mag, high shoulder shot and dropped the bull in his tracks, he slid down the park about 300 yards and into the trees and we figured he was dead.. by the time we got up there an hour later we saw the skid marks with not one drop of blood anywhere. we followed it the tracks into the trees and found the bull there still alive. I have this on video as well when he put a final kill shot at 20 yards. Broz I have read your thread on the 215gr. 30 cal, looks like a great combination and very lethal setup you have! I have put together alot of long range rifles and have had good feed back on most, but there has been some instances with these bullets that i cant figure out! It just seems that they are to inconsistent, but yes i was really glad to retrieve this bullet to finally see what some of this was going on! I personally am not the only one that i have talked to and heard these stories unfortunately. I love the high b.c. of Berger bullets and have to use them for the long range hunting, but its really making me wonder! Thank you guys for your inputs and we will see what else comes through this thread!
     
  9. Broz

    Broz Well-Known Member

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    My question still is how could any bullet fired at over 3000 fps that never expanded hit an elk at 600 yards and not pass through. The bullet still has it's point but yet it stopped before exiting? This is what all the manufacturers of solids and bonded bullets depend on, exits, yet this bullet kept it's shape and point but didn't exit? Anyone else here see a problem with this?

    Jeff
     
  10. phorwath

    phorwath Well-Known Member

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    I didn't recover the bullet because it passed through and left a .308 exit hole on the off-side of a dall ram in 2010. Here's a link to the Thread describing my experience.
    http://www.longrangehunting.com/forums/f92/alaskan-dall-sheep-210-berger-vld-60791/

    I have shot about 7 game animals with the VLDs. 168 grain .284s and 210 grain .308s. Great experiences with 5. Marginal on 1. And unacceptable on the dall ram.

    You were fortunate to have recovered the bullet under the hide. I suspect most bullets that don't open up pass out the off-side of the game animal, never to be seen again. But I'll pay attention to see if any more photos are posted.

    Thanks for sharing your experiences.
     
  11. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    Tumbling and just bouncing around inside till it's energy is expended would be the only possible answer.

    Of course, that would create one hellish wound channel and as such the animal should have gone down immediately.
     
  12. bullridety

    bullridety Well-Known Member

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    This is a great topic on why the bullet didnt exit or expand thats why i posted this pic! Obviously my velocities and point of aim ect..had to be dead on to hit this animal at 626 yards. so i think that i did my part on placing the shot ect. BUT exactly that is my Question why didnt this bullet expand at 3,025 fps?? Also here is a great question to you as well: why is Best of the West all of a sudden promoting the 300 win mag after all these years they said the 7mm mag was the best??....Maybe Broz is right on this one by shooting the 300 win 215VLDs
     
  13. bullridety

    bullridety Well-Known Member

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    Broz----Did Erick send any bullets your way for the testing and all the info you produced?
     
  14. COBrad

    COBrad Well-Known Member

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    I used the 7mm 180 Hunting VLD's this year out of my 7 rem mag for marmots. I shot almost a dozen at ranges from 920 to 1156 yards. I was pleasantly surprised with how effective they were on those small targets. Sometimes they just ripped them, and at worst, they still showed some expansion and did the job nicely. I did manage to dig a couple of them out of the ground at 968 yards, and they were pretty much destroyed.
    This is my first year using this bullet, and so far I am impressed.
    I am also using 140 gr HVLD's in my 270 WSM with similar results, but only out to 592 yards. I did punch some paper at 842 yards a couple weeks ago and dug out a few bullets. They were mushroomed nicely, but not to the extent the 7mm's had been.
    I'm getting 2980 out of the 7 mag, and 3180 with the 270.