Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long range

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by Thewildedge, Jan 1, 2011.

  1. Thewildedge

    Thewildedge New Member

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    I have a 7mm rem mag that favors a 162 grn Hornady BTSP Interloc leaving the muzzle at 2800 fps. Hornadys website still shows almost 1500 lbs energy at 500 yds. Has anyone any input on these bullets at 500 & 600 yds hunting Deer and elk ? What should be the minimum amount of energy left at impact to adequately kill with a well placed shot ? This load has worked well previously up to 300 yds but I am seeing alot of animals past this and want to work this rifle up to be able to take them. Thanks for your time to read this and hopefully, helpful answers. Jack
     
  2. SBruce

    SBruce Well-Known Member

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    Re: Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long ra

    The old "rule of thumb minimum" if you will says..............approx 800 ft.lbs for antelope, 1000 ft. lbs for deer, 1500 ft. lbs for elk. This is all assuming the bullet is still going fast enough to do what it's supposed to do, and heavy enough to penetrate to the vitals. Also assuming shot placement was roughly broadside and not a "texas heart shot" or sharply quartering shot.

    I've tested this theory in small bore calibers at extended distances (at least on deer and antelop) and find it to be fairly reliable for general purposes.
     

  3. Thewildedge

    Thewildedge New Member

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    Re: Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long ra

    Thanks for the info, it gives me a good place to start. Have you any thoughts on the hornadys or would switching bullets to a nosler or berger and working up another load be a smarter way to go in your opinion ? Thanks J
     
  4. Kevin Cram

    Kevin Cram <b>SPONSOR</b>

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    Re: Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long ra

    I'll agree with SBruce. Here in PA we have just whitetail deer and black bear. I use 900 ft/lbs as a minimum for my longest range. For a larger animal like elk I'd want to have a bit more, but a well placed shot is key.
     
  5. mikebob

    mikebob Well-Known Member

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    Re: Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long ra

    I read a book on testing bullets years ago and they said it took 900ft-lbs for a complete pass through on deer. Mind you that was years ago, with with bullets today it might be slightly lower. I try to keep my shots within 1800 ft/s so I get good expansion.
     
  6. SBruce

    SBruce Well-Known Member

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    Re: Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long ra

    I've used Hornady's on game with good results, but I've also used noslers and bergers with good results too.

    IMO, if your rifle is already shooting the hornady bullet into smaller groups than you can hold under real world field conditions, then try it by all means.
     
  7. blipelt

    blipelt Well-Known Member

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    Re: Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long ra

    If you are worried, build a model of an animal. 3/4" plywood with a couple of wet down telephone books and then another sheet of 3/4" plywood should be a good example. Check and see what kind of damage your load will exert.

    The energy exerted on the animal by the projectile is just a small part of the equation. You have alot of variables because of the animal itself. Condition of the animal, compensatory mechanisms adrenaline etc.... Don't get caught up on some magic number.

    Brent
     
  8. Thewildedge

    Thewildedge New Member

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    Re: Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long ra

    Thank you guys for your time, wisdom and opinions. It definitely all helps. I hope you all have a great New Year. j P
     
  9. Bravo 4

    Bravo 4 Well-Known Member

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    Re: Trying to find min amount of bullet energy required to make clean kill at long ra

    Lots of good advise, especially don't get caught up in the numbers game. Your load is more then enough for whitetails and elk at 500, I would just be a little picky with my shot placement on elk.