Berger bullet tissue damage

Excavator

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Nov 28, 2016
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128
Problem is I had to finish off both of those bucks with a knife, when I walked up on them. Notice I said bullets blew up on impact. Don’t get me wrong they were both down in their tracks. But zero Vital organ damage.
 

bigngreen

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Nov 24, 2008
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I spent 6 years cutting wildgame so meat damage and blood shot to me is a huge deal BUT so is lethality, I shoot a lot of Berger's and I've never seen one blow up, the inside has a small hole with about an inch or so radiating blood shot then there will be some minor seem blood shot, then the exit if there is one is a ragged 1.5-2 inch hole that tends to have little blood shot. More than some monos but less than any bullet with a tip in it. My shot ranges are 300-800 yards for 90% of my shooting and typically behind the shoulder. I recover 100% of the game I've shot and only shot it once with Berger's, only only other bullet I've seen that performance with is Hammers and they perform excellent in the meat recovery side though for me and my range and placement much difference from the Berger.
 

TexSavage

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Jul 30, 2006
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193
Location
Amarillo, Texas
Up until 10 years ago I killed 95% of my deer with a 22-250 using a Sierra 55 grain BTHP. To say it was deadly would be an understatement. Never, ever lost a deer using the 22-250. The other 5% were taken with a 7MM Rem Mag. In Texas, the counties I hunt in, have a 5 whitetail deer harvest. It's a rarity for me to ever have tags left or meat left.

Along comes the urge to go "Long Range". The last 10 years I've been using a Savage 12 BVSS for both long range shooting, hunting and prairie dog extermination. I have used the Berger VLDs, 190 and now exclusively the 215 for the past 6 plus years, before that 190 JLK & 178 AMAX in my 300WSM. My hand loads double for hunting and banging steel at long distances. The bullets have never failed to drop game from DRT to maybe 10 yards. Impacts at 20 yards to 335 yards, always an entry hole of .308 and an exit hole the size of a tennis ball to the size of a grapefruit. Last fall it was a big oryx cow on a cull hunt. Distance was around 80 yards or just under. halk of one lung gone, massive damage to the remaining 1 and 1/2. Half the heart gone with massive hole to the other half, exit wound right at tennis ball size. Stood there for a few seconds, walked about 10 feet and fell down a small hill. DRT. An animal's will to live is voracious.

In all my years I failed to recover one deer, shot with the 175 AMAX at 215 yards. Thought I'd be Joe Cool and took a neck shot. Knocked the deer down, DRT. Waited 15 minutes, got down and walked to that DRT deer. I'll be danged right there, no deer. WHY would I change shot placement. Why, because I was DRT, dumb right there.

You know I been hunting for over 50 years. I've been reloading for 41 years. I've shot deer, antelope and oryx. I've used Sierra, Speer, JLK, Hornady, & Berger. I've killed em with pistol and rifle, wildcats & factory. I've shot factory ammo and handloads for hunting and practice. Not a single one ever blew up on impact, none. Every one of them at some point in time caused post entry tissue damage as well as exit damage that made me cringe. I've lost shoulders on occasion, as well as a backstrap and a few hind quarters. I hate wasting meat, I'm a meat eater, raised to not waste what I kill. Not a single one ever blew up on impact, none.

Yet, all the times I was disappointed there were 2 things in common. My shot placement and my ability or lack thereof. Placement, Placement, Placement. Me, Me, Me. I post this not as a ding or a tirade aimed at anyone. Just my own conviction of myself. I just know in my experience I'm the one that failed, every time. I am also still haunted by the deer I never found and it's a reminder to me that I make darn sure my own DRT, dumb right there, does not repeat itself.

Sorry for the length and it's a bit off post, which the moderator can move at their discretion.

Your mileage may vary.
 

Excavator

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Nov 28, 2016
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128
I like the Bergers, just not at close high speed ranges. Both of those deer were shot inside of 200 yards. However we did a cull eue auadad hunt in Texas and shot 37 from 400-978 yards and they were awesome all DRT.
 

flyguy1

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Joined
Oct 17, 2015
Messages
181
Location
Montana
I spent 6 years cutting wildgame so meat damage and blood shot to me is a huge deal BUT so is lethality, I shoot a lot of Berger's and I've never seen one blow up, the inside has a small hole with about an inch or so radiating blood shot then there will be some minor seem blood shot, then the exit if there is one is a ragged 1.5-2 inch hole that tends to have little blood shot. More than some monos but less than any bullet with a tip in it. My shot ranges are 300-800 yards for 90% of my shooting and typically behind the shoulder. I recover 100% of the game I've shot and only shot it once with Berger's, only only other bullet I've seen that performance with is Hammers and they perform excellent in the meat recovery side though for me and my range and placement much difference from the Berger.
So Hammer, like Barnes, don't damage much meat? I would guess not, since they are monolithic, but never relied much on theory. Meatcutters know best what bullets do. (And surgeons :>). Way too much theory and too little real world experience these internet days.
 
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Vann Kirkland

Active Member
Joined
Dec 22, 2018
Messages
27
Location
Jacksonville, Florida
Thank you men for sharing your experiences with the Berger. I think this is what this group and website is all about. I’ve researched, shot and debated with the Berger...I’m done with them. I’ve had exceptional results with the Accubond and the Barns TTSX on Elk, and the Nosler Ballistic on deer. I think I’ll keep with what I have.
 

bigngreen

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Nov 24, 2008
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8,127
Location
SW Montana
So Hammer, like Barnes, don't damage much meat? I would guess not, since they are monolithic, but never relied much on theory. Meatcutters know best what bullets do. (And surgeons :>). Way too much theory and too little real world experience these internet days.
I shot Barnes a quite a few years and they don't do as much meat damage but they also don't do as much internal damage which started the search for a compromise between meat loss and lethality, I'll never shoot an elk again with Barnes, they are fine deer bullets but hands down the worst for elk. The Hammers are in no way like a Barnes, they create an excellent internal wound channel by the nose fragging and creating a starburst effect in the lungs then the shank is blunt and it keeps trucking straight through, smashing and exiting.
 

cohunt

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Jan 21, 2016
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Location
Colorado Springs, CO
the berger pics remind me of the 130 nosler ballistic tip out of my 270win

the hammer bullets shed pedals and have a blunt face for disruption -- think of a WFN hard cast bullet for pistols (or rifles) for dangerous game --a flat face will cause a larger permanent wound channel than a round mushrooming face--berger bullets are a fragmenting bullet which is different all together-- they both work if placed correctly, yet work in completely different ways
 
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bigngreen

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Nov 24, 2008
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8,127
Location
SW Montana
If meat damage is a big concern bullets with tips and are designed to open by contact always create more blood shot and meat loss, no way around it. I've picked hundreds of little white and green tips out of entrance wounds and they just are always a mess. Bullets that open by hydraulic action which is an open tip type bullet, open a fraction slower and over all you get a better yield because the bullet has opened at or just after the ribs.
 

flyguy1

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Oct 17, 2015
Messages
181
Location
Montana
Funny how experiences differ. The guy who got me on to Barnes is a butcher by trade and has butchered wild game for 30 years uses nothing but Barnes, as do his sons and hunting partners as he reloads for them all. They are very aggressive about putting in for cow tags, so each usually get 2 elk/year and only lost 2 over the last decade. Weird. Not saying any experiences are not valid just odd how things work. The only deer I ever shot that ran more than a few yards I shot with a .375 Nosler Partition. Couldn't believe it. Definitely will try the Hammers though.
 

Excavator

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Nov 28, 2016
Messages
128
The gun was built by Gun Werks Shooting their ammo. All I know is they load with rutumbo and Norma brass.
 

Kimber7man

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Jul 1, 2008
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883
130 VLD hunting out of a 260 at around 2,780 FPS muzzle velocity IIRC. Muley was at 300, antelope at 234 or 235.
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