Poor Performance From Nosler Varmageddon

Discussion in 'Varmint Hunting' started by Jud96, Jul 6, 2016.


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  1. Jud96

    Jud96 Well-Known Member

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    A couple weeks back I went ground hog hunting and took two of them using my Remington 700 Varmint in .243 Winchester. I brought along two good loads, my standard is an 87gr V-MAX loaded with 44.0gr of IMR 4350 going 3370 fps, and I also brought with me a new close range load with a 70gr Varmageddon pushed at 3600fps with 46.0gr of IMR 4350.

    The first hog I took, and the one that got me here, was at 234yds. He was sunning himself in a field and was laying long ways, I put the Leupold target dot on his shoulder and squeezed off the 70gr Nosler. I watched him keel over in the scope and his tail wagged a little. Curious to see what kind of damage the Nosler rolling at 3600fps did, I walked down to where he lay. What I found was less than expected to say the least. I hit him square through the shoulders with a .24cal entry wound, and the exit was about one inch in diameter. I was expecting this to blow him to pieces. I have seen 107gr SMKs at the same ranges leave more impressive wounds than this. My 87gr V-MAXs with 17 grains more lead and going 230fps slower do much more damage at this range and leave huge dramatic wounds. Has anyone else experienced less than expected results from these bullets? Below is a picture of the exit wound from the 70gr Varmageddon.
     

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  2. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    To me, a 1" exit wound sounds pretty good. The bullet stayed together and dropped the hog.

    Like you I would have expected the bullet to grenade. I like a good exit wound, but don't like bullets that come apart. (Just Me).

    I don't know how tough ground hogs are, but it may take more than one shot/kill to evaluate the bullet.

    At least you got to try them out on a varmint.


    J E CUSTOM
     
  3. Jud96

    Jud96 Well-Known Member

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    I like fragmentation on hogs just because of the areas I hunt in. I want to minimize ricochets so there's no chance to hit a barn, farm equipment, or livestock. Groundhogs are pretty tough and thick. I would have suspected the bullet to expand a lot more when hitting a solid mass like a ground hog. From everything I read and from Noslers description, these are suppose to be a rapid expanding, fragmenting bullet. I just didn't get that affect. Hopefully I can get another shot under 300 yards so I can test them again and see if I get repetitive results like on the one above, or if I get more dramatic expansion.
     
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  4. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like a good idea if you have buildings around your hunting.

    Did you buy the Tipped Varmageddon's or the hollow points (They make both types and the hollow points will normally expand better).

    You might try something lighter (I think you can buy bullets as light as 50 grains for the 243) to get more expansion/velocity you should be able to load to 3600+ft/sec with the 50's

    You might also try head shots to get more expansion.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  5. budlight

    budlight Well-Known Member

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    We might have the same rifle mine is the 26 inch bull sps varmint. 9 1/8 twist. I went to south dakota for some PD hunting. because of the twist rate sub 70's are iffy and not needed. Bad BC

    In the past years I used 80 gr Sierra blitz which is a great spbt. right near 3500 fps H100V powder

    Really explosive Popped them way up in the air like a helicopter

    this year I bought some of those 750 round bulk boxes of Speer TNT 70 gr and 72 gr barnes Varminators. I loaded up 8 pounds of H414 after some testing on chrono and bench rest days to fine tune the powder choices.

    Very impressive even turned down to 3600 fps

    It is my opinion and this is based on 223 shooting of Varmigedons. They are cheap mass produced bullets with poor accuracy when shot out of my 24 inch match grade barrels. I tested them on jack rabbits and they had more expansion than sp. but not explosive. They are junky and cheap shooting
     
  6. Jud96

    Jud96 Well-Known Member

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    These bullets are the tipped Varmageddons and I expected them to rapidly expand, especially at 3600fps. I did get another hog the other day at 158yds. It was very gruesome and split him in two with the 70gr Nosler. I think it worked this time because of where I hit him. He was quartering away from me and I put the crosshairs on the back of his ribs and touched it off. This spun him 360 degrees and peeled him open from behind his shoulders to his rear end. The bullet made contact with a lot of flesh and bone so it really had no excuse but to open up. I will continue to shoot the 220 or so I have left, but will be looking for another 70-75gr bullet to replace them, thinking of trying the Speer TNTs or just buy some 75gr V-MAXs. Below is the evidence I found after striking the hog at 158 yards with the 70gr Varmageddon at 3600fps.
     

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  7. ncwg2boatguy

    ncwg2boatguy Well-Known Member

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    I use the 40gr Varmagedden ,224 Hollow points and they are brutal. Anything under 10lbs explodes. Here is my critter Slayer. 24" Savage AR Bull barrel
    1/8 twist
    OP4 side charger upper
    Anderson lower with CMC 3.5 lb trigger
    Burris AR 4-12x42 optic.
    27,8gr Varget - About all it can stand with LC brass without being compressed.
    LC Brass
    COAL- 2.266
    3655 FPS
     

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  8. CatShooter

    CatShooter Well-Known Member

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    Did you ever try the TNTs on woodchucks.
    I am considering them for my 244 Remingtons, a 40XB and a Browning B-78.

    I have had the same problem with 87 V-Maxs - they kill OK, but they pass right through and keeep on going (and going and going)...

    ... so I mostly use my .220 Swift, and my 22-250s for woodchucks, cuz my perfect bullet checks in, but doesn't check out - I want to see a warm bag of jello with one itsy bitsy hole going in.
     
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  9. Jud96

    Jud96 Well-Known Member

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    No I never did. I did get some 75 VMAXs to try this summer. The Varmageddons were expanding extremely fast! Most of the time they don't exit and if they do it's just tiny holes from shrapnel. I've never had a problem with the 87gr VMAXs. I'll post some pictures of the performance I get with 87s at 3430fps. Warning, they aren't for the fate of heart.
     

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  10. OzRanger

    OzRanger Member

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    I wanted to follow up to this thread (I know it was years ago.) But I witnessed similar things at 4000fps 70gr varmageddons and just had to do some study on it.

    I have a theory here that seems after some autopsy work to make sense.

    I'm shooting 70gr Varmigeddons and Varmint (spitzer purple tip) out of a 6-06 at 4000 FPS. Initially i thought I was getting pass through too. But actually, you aren't. The reason you saw one blow to pieces and the first one not is because most of the force was contained within the animal. That 1" exit wound was just remnants of the base passing through dragging some crap out with it, I think. I've just gotten back from a hunt trying these again after witnessing similar things and did some autopsy work. What I noted was the animal was full of little bits of bullet, it definitely has blown the thing internally to bits, but on bigger, tougher or thicker skinned stuff it just keeps the blast contained. I found the 70 Varmint (purple tips) to be super accurate and had no trouble hitting my quarry at 400 yards, terminal effects, if it did exit were impressive. Some even exploded their internals back out the hole the bullet entered, i'm guessing path of least resistance. Either way, don't worry about those 1" pass through, the varmaggedons are still doing their work inside.

    Next week i'm heading up to the farm again with 3 decent sized pork shoulders that are about 4"x10" to shoot at 100yards. I have a decent camera with a good frame rate to test these effects. I'll put a water jug behind them to catch what I can.

    6mm - 55gr varmageddon (4500 fps.) 1/14 twist.
    6mm - 70gr Varmageddon (4000fps)
    6mm - 65gr vmax (4300fps)
    6mm - 70 gr Varmint spitzer (purple tip nosler) 4000 fps.

    I'll get back to you when I am done with the video.
    This will be fun.
     
  11. CatShooter

    CatShooter Well-Known Member

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    Did you ever get around to doing the test on pork shoulders you spoke about??
     
  12. Jerry M

    Jerry M Well-Known Member

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    Why would you thing a fragile varmint designed to disintegrate on Prairie Dogs and Ground Hogs would work on something as large as a pig? I'm thinking the upper limit of this bullet would be coyote and bobcat.
    IMHO wrong bullet for the application. Though it did kill the pig.

    Good Luck

    Jerry
     
  13. CatShooter

    CatShooter Well-Known Member

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    The hogs they are talking about are ground hogs, not NOT "pigs" -- they are 10-12 pound rodents, also called woodchucks.
     
  14. Jerry M

    Jerry M Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, poor reading on my part.....

    Jerry