Done with 215 Bergers

Quicksilver338

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Joined
Dec 18, 2018
Messages
204
Location
Lynden
I second this. Use a welding tip cleaner. Looks like a deans held drill bit. Just make sure the tips are open. Sometimes they are not and that will cause more of a penciling.

you cannot have a bullet 215 grains at close range hit the vitals and pencil through and not exit. Either it explodes inside dumping allits energy into the vitals or it pencils through exiting dumping less than 100% of its energy into the deer

if you want a good exit at close range use a Solid bullet. Accuracy is less important inside 400 yards. 1.5 MOA will do. Additionally, ballistic coefficient is not important either. Therefore, try nosler partition or swift A-frame.
Personally I will stick with berger and accept these limitations until I have a good reason not to. This is true for mule deer and elk in western hunting situations. For grizzly etc inside 100 yards I would use a solid or high weight retention bullet to get through heavy bone and get an exit hole at close range.
Grizzly make sure you’re shooting a freight train going Mach chicken. Should do the trick.
 

richhymas

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Joined
Mar 3, 2012
Messages
87
Lol. Definitely wasn't the shot I was wanting. He was right on the edge of private so I didn't want to lose him and I can't stand to see an animal suffer.
I feel with a different bullet the first shot would have anchored him with no follow up needed.
A silver dollar exit is pretty impressive. Not sure what more to expect.
 

richhymas

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Joined
Mar 3, 2012
Messages
87
That's crazy. Drill out the hollow point to make it perform? That's something I don't feel anyone should have to do to make a product perform like it claims.
Actually, since the 215 doesn’t claim to be a hunting bullet, it makes sense. For the hunting labeled bullets, it would be nice if they cleaned up the tips in the factory.
 

hunter0925

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Joined
Mar 31, 2015
Messages
85
A silver dollar exit is pretty impressive. Not sure what more to expect.

The silver dollar exits were only on the doe. The bullet blew up on the pronghorn buck and penciled through the mule deer. If they had all done like they did on the doe I would have been more than happy.
 

ATH

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Joined
Oct 7, 2003
Messages
1,255
Location
Lizton, IN
This thread makes my head hurt. Just like any of the other bullet bashing threads.... for every Berger hating thread I can show you an equal amount of other brand hating thread.
Yeah people complain that performance examples are anecdotal but that's the thing....ALL BULLET PERFORMANCE EXPERIENCES ARE ANECDOTAL. I'm a scientist and I've never seen anything else unless you count lab/gel tests, which are not representative of the real world. So back to my prior post, we are left with using what you have full confidence in when you pull the trigger because the last thing you need in your mind on a 500+ yard shot is doubt.
 

Bearman375

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Joined
Apr 8, 2019
Messages
76
Location
Great falls Montana
I might as well be bringing up politics, but here it goes. I've been shooting the 215 Bergers out of my 300 win since 2017. Developed a great load shooting sub half minute at 2705 fps.

2017:
  • Wife shot a cow at 260 yards. Didn't look for a blood trail because we could see the animal laying 40 yards away. Bullet worked. Wonderful.
2018:
  • I shot at a cow. 300ish yards, poor rest, rushed/hectic shot. My wife, brother and I looked for about 1.5 hours. Couldn't find a drop of blood. No hair. Nothing. Three people looking all over for that long, we swore I missed. My other brother had a tag and ran off after the herd after my shot. He came back and asked if we found blood. No, we said. I guess I missed. He said alright. Let's head back to the truck. He started walking and we all followed closely behind. After a couple hundred yards he stepped to the side to reveal my dead elk laying there. He followed that elks tracks the whole way back to where we stood looking for blood and said that he didn't see a single drop. Granted this one is my fault; I hit it in the guts. I would still hope to see some sign of a hit.
  • The next day my wife shot at a cow at 460 yards. She practices at this range all the time and I know she can make the shot. She doesn't shoot if she's not comfortable and confident. No sign at all of a hit. The four of us looked for half the day and couldn't find anything. She definitely could have missed, but after the previous day's display I would not be surprised at all if she hit it.
  • Couple of weeks later I shot a cow at 260 yards. Ended up breaking the front shoulder and it only went 10 yards.
2019:
  • I shot a bull at 40 yards. It ran maybe 70 yards with blood spewing everywhere and died. Happy
  • My wife shot a bull at 260 yards and dropped it in it's tracks. Happy.
2020:
  • This spring I shot a beautiful big color phased bear. 260 yards, prone, solid as a rock - I could hit a baseball with the gun at that range. The bear was over a hill and disappeared after the shot. It looked like I hit it in the scope. Walked up to it swearing I would find a beautiful dead bear. Nothing. No hair. No blood. Nothing. Looked all over. Nothing. Two weeks later I found a pretty monstrous (in my book) black bear skull in the same area. My bear? I'll never know for certain. Sickening.
  • Monday I shot a bull. Thought it was dead. Walked up to it and it stood up. I shot it at ~30 yards broadside right in the boiler room. It flinched and kept standing. I shot it again, right in the boiler room. It took a couple steps and fell. I gave it 30 seconds and it was still pretty with it, so I shot it in the head. Still moving. Shot it in the head again and it finally faded slowly.
The first shot was at about 100 yards. None of the shots, except one head shot, had exit wounds. I found one copper jacket laying against the far side ribcage. The autopsy revealed that the internal organs were essentially fully intact. I saw no signs of the one "boiler room" shot. The other one, I saw a hole the size of my pointer finger through the lungs. I could barely stick my finger through the hole. The bullet didn't exit the far side of the animal, but penciled through the lungs - I would have expected to find a pencil exit.

I guess I'm starting to see why "not suitable for hunting" is stamped onto the box.

Unless somebody can show me what I'm doing wrong here, I'm pretty sure I'm done with the 215 hybrid. I might try the 205 Elite Hunters out. I'm also open to other suggestions.
Accubonds all day long, blood trail, quick death and accurate
 

skipdavidson

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Joined
Aug 30, 2006
Messages
198
I have a few data points to contribute.

In my experience, Berger's come apart from two different modes. First, if you are close enough, and you impact bone, the nose is structurally damaged initiating further expansion. The second occurs generally at longer distance without direct bone impact. The bullet tumbles on impact, and as the bullet goes sideways, the nose breaks off initiating further expansion.

Dave Tubb has a killer mod for match bullets that enhances either mode of expansion. Scoring a ring on the ogive.

I think most hunting bullets with some type of tip to enhance expansion work much more consistently. If you are only shooting out to 600 yards, those would be a better choice. If you are shooting animals at 1000, chasing downrange velocity, minimizing wind deflection, and getting consistent vertical spreads becomes important enough to trade off some of the traditional bullet benefits.

Shot placement trumps bullet performance without argument.
 

sw282

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Joined
Dec 29, 2015
Messages
171
I have a ''Berger Story'' too:rolleyes: 2018 l was near Clayton NM on a big game Prairie Dog hunt. We were on a small local ranch of around 80 sections. l was toting my walking varmint gun in 221Fireball. This little Remington's favourite bullet is a 35gr Berger HP Match (no longer made). Velocity @3400fps. I was having great accuracy but no ''POP''. l had to shoot some TWICE. Problem was solved by switching over to some 40gr VMAX l had brought along also. l lost 100fps but was immediately rewarded with a ''POP''. Moral of this story IS-- Target bullets are for TARGETS. Hunting bullets are for MEAT🥳
Every animal deserves a quick humane death, even the lowly prairie dog🤯
 

jareese

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LRH Team Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2015
Messages
72
Location
South Central Wisconsin
I was trying to stay with it til the mention of a close range head shot failed to kill the animal requiring a follow up.

A 215gr spitball from a 300WM will kill any animal on the continent with a point blank headshot...
He didn’t say “where” in the head be shot it. May have been face.
 

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