SST and Balistic Tips on deer. A good choice?

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by deermaster, Jan 2, 2011.

  1. deermaster

    deermaster Member

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    I have heard three different things from three experienced whitetail hunters.

    One said SST and Ballistic Tips will explode when they hit any bone such as a whitetails shoulder, causing a nasty flesh wound but not going deep enough to kill. He said this happened with 180 gr Winchester Ballistic Silver Tips.

    The second one said SST and Ballistic Tips will NOT expand UNLESS they hit solid bone. He claims he shot a buck at a decent range (about 380 yds), three times. He said the first two did not expand, as they went through ribs and it was not enough to cause them to expand. He then hit the shoulder on the third shot and the deer dropped like a rock. This was a .270 shooting 130 gr factory (I believe he said Federal) loads.

    The third, and from what I gather here, is the majority of most hunters. He says they do just fine on whitetails, shoulder hits or rib/lung hits. The deer tend to pile up on the spot.

    My question is have any of you experienced what the first two hunters experienced? Also, when using Ballistic Tips, should I aim for the shoulders, or back just a bit so it hits ribs and lungs? This will be one whitetails up to 200 lbs or so. Thanks for any info.
     
  2. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Both the Nosler BT's and the SST's are great deer bullets! If you were talking elk, I would say shoulder shots at high velocity would be iffy! On deer, they are deadly...Rich
     

  3. D.ID

    D.ID Well-Known Member

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    Never hit any bone but ribs but ballistic tips definitely expand (except coyotes at 20 yards) and in the heavy weights IE:180gr 300wsm they pass threw with destruction on dear, on elk at 450yards pass threw is 50/50 but four inch wound channel has bean the norm DRT typical. Shot placement as always is everything. In that weight of bt I have not encountered the fabled "blew up on surface" everyone warns of.
     
  4. The SST's are a good tough deer bullet and the BT's are also very good in the heavier weights. The lighter varmint BT's wouldn't be too good to use on deer, but anything over 80 grains (just guessing on the grain cutoff) has a different construction to stay together a bit better than the lighter ones.
     
  5. eyeballjr

    eyeballjr Well-Known Member

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    I have seen a shoulder shot with one, done lots of damage and deer did not take a step. Went straight legged and fell over.
     
  6. edge

    edge Well-Known Member

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    A few years ago I used the 30 caliber 150 grain SST in my custom muzzleloader. I said in the story that it was an 8mm bullet but it was the 30 cal. SST as can be seen in the recovered jacket.
    Some of the story does not apply since that forum had been discussing the new, at that time TMZ ml bullet.
    Here was my account of the hunt:

    CLOSE RANGE IMPACTS.....

    One problem that all bullets encounter is the optimum impact velocity.
    Can a bullet work at 3,000 fps and at 1000 fps? I can't answer that, but I think that the TMZ may be able to. I like it because it has a massive hollow point, sans the plastic tip, and the good BC.
    The problem is I don't currently shoot them ;D

    Today I did test another bullet at close range.. Yes, it was longer then my last kill, but not by a real lot :(

    I sat this morning and saw only does, legal for ML but not what I was after. After several unsuccessful drives, my friend and hunting partner decide to go to a small patch that seemed like a waste of time. 35 acres of 95% open space. 1/2 of it was mowed to about 3 inches and other than a couple of hedgerows the balance was floodplain that was not much more than a foot high with some briar's.

    I did a half hearted push for my friend and was 90% done when a small buck jumped up in front of my friend, but out of his shotgun range. The terrain was downhill from my friend to a small creek and then a very steep slope. This would work to my favor since the deer got to the creek and while it could easily go up the slope, the logical route would be left or right. It turned toward me as I dropped to a knee behind some tall grass and briar's to look it over and in anticipation for a shot. The deer appeared to be headed straight for me and about 50 yards away. For some reason my friend decide to yell BUCK, as if I did not see it ;D , and at the the buck stops to look back at him. Drive over, the deer is ready to bolt so I shot even though I had to shoot through cover.
    At the shot, the buck jumps, crosses the creek and runs up the hill with no sign of slowing. To make matters worse my friend fires a shot of buckshot...and he was at least 100 yards away! I hear another two shot from my friend after my deer has out of sight so I walked over to see what he was doing.
    It turns out that two bucks jumped up after I shot, and they were within yards of my friend but he was watching me and was taken by surprise and missed two MASSIVE bucks that were hiding like rabbits in grass that you would not even think to push!

    Back to the title.

    The deer I shot was headed toward me but his head was turned 90 degrees to his left. The 8mm 150 grain bullet hit just left of his right leg which was a little far back at very close to 3000 fps.
    The bullet centered a rib, continued through one lung, liver, stomach, intestines, and exited through the ham. Actually the jacket was recover inside the hide next to the ham but the core exited.
    I think that I may switch to the Accubond for next year even though this was pretty good performance. More than 20 inches of straight line penetration and still an exit..

    edge.

    Jacket:
    [​IMG]

    Outside Entrance:
    [​IMG]

    Inside Entrance:
    [​IMG]

    Internal Damage, and exit wound in leg and hide:
    [​IMG]
    ( right is ham, left is hide pulled back, and center bottom is wound channel.


    edge.
     
  7. mnoland30

    mnoland30 Well-Known Member

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    My son shot a mule deer at 70 yards with a 140 gr. BT with a 7mm Rem Mag. It made hamburger of both front shoulders. Almost no salvageable meat. My friend shot a Barbary sheep at 90 yards with a 7mm-08 140 gr. BT and it dropped on the spot. At high velocity, they almost explode. I've never heard of a BT not opening. It doesn't even seem possible at reasonable velocities unless the bullet was defective. I hit a moving deer in the throat, and it made less than 100 yards.

    I started using Barnes bullets after that, because I like controlled expansion, and an exit hole on elk. My butcher used to put all of the recovered bullets in a tray on the counter, and the Barnes bullets always looked just like the pictures in the magazines. I used 120 a gr. bullet in a 7-30 Waters at 2400 fps and got complete penetration and dropped in tracks performance on a Barbary sheep at 230 yards.

    At the other end of the spectrum is the Berger bullet. It penetrates two or three inches and then explodes in the vitals. I shot an elk this year with a Berger bullet, and I have to say I loved the result. They shoot very accurately (more than half the battle) and the terminal performance was devastating. The bull took two steps and rolled. Just like in the video.

    When all is said and done, almost any bullet will work on a deer. The most critical issues are accuracy and price. The only time I ever had an expansion problem was with my TC Pistol 7mm TCU shooting at 1900 fps. At 100 yards, the bullets were going through javelina without much expansion. I switched to Speer's 115 gr. hollowpoints (1/8" hole at the tip) and it drops them in their tracks out to 200 yards.
     
  8. Trickymissfit

    Trickymissfit Well-Known Member

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    I bought two boxes of them when they first came out to try in my 270 mag. The bullets blew up going thru card board targets!! Went home and pulled the loads apart only to find everything spot on. Called Hornaday to ask them what was wrong (thinking I had a bad batch of bullets). Turned out that they were not made for the velocities I was driving them at, and were actually designed for speeds less than 3100 fps (I was way past that). But them same bullets would work very well at longer distances (300 to 400 yards), but forget short range shots.
    gary
     
  9. fj40mojo

    fj40mojo Well-Known Member

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    Can't speak for the BTs but I have seen 3 deer shot with SSTs and all 3 were clean kills DRT. 2 of 3 were complete penetrations (140grn 6.5mm) and the one recovered bullet (165gr .308) broke both shoulders on a good sized mule deer buck at 75 yards and retained better than half it's original weight. None of these bullets were being driven at warp speed(<3000fps), I recon if you are driving them at wrap speeds you may want to pick a more substantial bullet like a Barnes or Nosler Partition. At longer ranges you may be OK as the bullet will have shed some velocity by the time it gets out there.
     
  10. Trickymissfit

    Trickymissfit Well-Known Member

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    I was right ontop of 3400 fps using large doses of of 4831.
    gary
     
  11. The Duke007

    The Duke007 Well-Known Member

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    I have shot five deer with the sat. I was using a 270 win in a weatherby vanguard. The damage these bullets have done on deer inside 100 ids is devestating. I also used the same bullets in my rem auto in a 270 but the damage was not the same. I wonder the twist and barrel length have something to do with it
     
  12. elkaholic

    elkaholic Well-Known Member

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    Spin rate (twist) does affect wound channel to some degree as does velocity, but you wouldn't think it would be THAT evident unless there was a great difference in velocity and/or twist?.........Rich
     
  13. fj40mojo

    fj40mojo Well-Known Member

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    At shorter ranges, <300 you are driving them beyond their design limits.
     
  14. mnoland30

    mnoland30 Well-Known Member

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    I'm surprised your bullets didn't blow up as they came out of the barrel at that velocity.

    One reason I like Barnes bullets in my 7mm Mag is that they don't blow up on close range shots (which occasionally happens even for me) and they still expand well at long range and low velocity. I do like a blood trail. I'm not good enough at tracking in NM's rocky soil that I can track them once they stop running unless there is blood. Exit wounds make blood trails. Entrance wounds seldom bleed.