While note using a 180 accubond I have had great recent success with the 150 AB long range with my 280AI. I just got the gun recently and it is destroying deer with full pass through carnage. Here is a link to the report a couple weeks ago. you can see the exit wound it left in the pic. https://www.longrangehunting.com/threads/my-first-280ai-buck.194268/
I've since shot two large does at 200 yards as well and got complete pass through on each. Devastating rounds. Considering the size of your buck i'd stick with what you're doing. The first pic here the entrance is at the top right and the exit is bottom of the pic. Same for the bottom pic. Both 200 yards. The bottom deer was dumb enough to stand around and wait to see what happened after the first was shot.
I have had very good success with the 160 Accubonds out of my 7mm rem mag. Some have passed through the shoulder / rib cage area and some have been lodged under the skin on the far side. All dropped / died immediately. Ballistic Tips create massive / explosive damage, at least that has been my experience with about 15-20 deer taken with them. I tried the Partitions for a few years, but on whitetails the Partition seemed to pencil through with minimal internal damage. I had to track nearly every deer I shot with the Partitions when hit perfectly at ranges from 50 yards to 350 yards.
I like the Accu-bonds and Partitions. If you are shooting everything under 300 yards, I would personally shoot the partitions. Just personal preference. If you want to stretch it out, I would go AB. Both bullets are proven and best of all normally stay together much, much better than a ballistic tip or normal cup and core. This really helps with getting an exit wound which will be critical for any tracking in thick brush. If you don't have an exit wound, tracking is a whole different game...
Keep shooting them! I also have only recovered one and it was from the neck spine area of a bull elk. My experience is the front half expands rapidly and the back half pushes through. Most exit holes have been pretty small but have never lost a critter.
I shoot 180gr accubonds in my 300wby and have served me well. I've killed 4 bull elk since I've started using them. All have been one shot kills in the pumping plant at ranges 30yrds to 475yrds. None of them went over 50 yards. I think they are a fantastic bullet choice!
I’ve killed like 9 elk and some deer with my .300 win using 180 accubonds. I’ve only had 2 not exit. One on a cow elk at 130 yards. The bullet hit her high smashed the shoulder to pieces and blew up her lungs. She made it 100 yards on a death sprint and piled up. The other was last years bull. I shot him under the chin at 305 yards. Due to the angle the bullet followed the spine and ended up somewhere in the chest cavity. Oh and I did have one go from a cows right front shoulder through the entire body cavity and lodge in the left hind quarter. It was a perfect mushroom and that elk was only 40 yards away.
I have hunted deer with my 300 weatherby for over 25 years now. It was built by Harris Gunworks, it has a 28" barrel. I have always shot the 180 gr. Ballistic Tip bullets reloaded to 3200 fps. The shots on deer that I have taken have been from 50 to approx. 300 yards. The majority of the time the bullet would pass through, but most importantly each deer did not run over 50 yards when shot and most of them dropped in their tracks. The exit hole was usually the a little larger than the bullet diameter on all of the deer.
Years ago I used to run the 180g BT out of a 30-06. Shot a mule deer doe at 100y and had an exit hole the size of a basket ball. Shot an antelope once that I cut in half with my pocket knife. That kind of destruction is good for gophers.
My 2cents , when nosler came out with their accubond bullet I bought more then a few for my 270 wcf 140 grainers , soooo I happily loaded up more then a few and they shot great , then came deer hunting , shot a Hugh Doe a around 200 yds first shot was fast it spines her so had to shoot her again to put her dwn, another quick shot and done , took her home and washer her out then skinned her my 2nd shot went through her front shoulder shoulder it's was a blood shot mess but feed my friends dogs ,2 great other friends had bad examples from the same weight bullets in other 270s needles to say we don't use them for deer hunting any more . But I tryed an experiment with them shooting them on range farther then normal and recovering them all for study , my findings were very good to Great at 450 yds & 625 yds the accubond heald up great and all together plus retained a long shank behind the mushroomed front . So everybody's Perception is different , I don't like blood shot meat yes sometimes it can't be helped , but we pull the trigger ,so it lands on us . We ask a lot of our bullets & pay for them to boot , but there are more choices out there and it pays to Experiment , I reload for two 1st cousins both shoot 300 Bees (Weatherbys) in in a push feed Winchester md70 & the other Weatherby Vangard both 24 inch bbls, first rifle Lvs 165 Barnes x in spz or bts tmv is 3200 fps plus this has taken Elk n deer and no bullets recovered from the critters and pass throughs , just food for thought , someone mentioned Partions not being so accurate , not so in my stock 700 rem mag that was rechambered to 7 stw , shot 160s out to 1,000 tmv was 3200 + rifle heald 1 moa very easily 10 shots a most were in my fist size . Speer n Hornady make great bullets and I'm not talking all their high BC bullets eather read read till your eyes bleed it written in this great forum somewhere Knowledge is lost if not learned n passed on to others with same interests , thks jjmp
Whats wrong with shooting a deer and having it go down instantly, exactly?
My 300 Weatherbys never would shoot 180 Accubonds but I've shot a ton of them through 300 Wins, WSM and the RUM. Things from deer through water buffalo and even one grizzly. Used them for culling and that ran the numbers up. You get a ton of dead right now; you don't always get an exit wound.
Fact is; when animals went from dozens to hundreds, and the hundreds turned into thousands it was getting pretty obvious that the more often I get exits the more often I end up looking for the animal.