Savage Model 11 243 Win. BT Problems


New Member
Nov 29, 2004
HELP! I'm having major problems getting my Ballistic Tip bullets to open up on impact. I killed a deer two weeks ago and the bullet passed through without exploding. I thought it might have been a fluke, but I shot another deer yesterday evening and we tracked it for 300 yards until we came to the river where we couldn't continue to look.

My questions is...Has anyone had a situation where a ballistic tip isn't exploding? And ..How do I make sure that my guess is correct? I don't want to wound animals...I hunt for food and can't stand the thought of not recovering the game I harvest. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
For the past 2 seasons I have shot around 20 deer with my .243win, shooting 70gr NBT's in front of 43.5grns of H4350. Most people would consider my bullet choice to be a poor one, but this combo is the most accurate in my rifle and the 70grNBT's performance has been perfectly adequate so far. If the range is under 250 yards I almost always go for the head or neck shot; in which case, the 70grNBT leaves very little mess--it goes in, sheds its lead core (and probably much of its jacket), then the remaining solid copper NBT base exits leaving a very small exit. My experience has been that at ranges under 100yards the 70 gr NBT usually doesn't exit, even on the head and neck shots. At ranges above 200 yards the 70NBT almost always exits; At the greater ranges, I think the lack of veocity and kinetic energy causes this bullet to act more like a big game bullet than the varmint bullet that it is. Just this morning I anchored a large doe at 409yrds and the 70NBT performed perfectly(she dropped on the spot--a small fragment must have found its way up to the spine). The bullet went throught one shoulder blade and still almost exited(If I do go for the body shot, I always try to avoid the shoulder, but that doesn't always happen)--I found the beat-up copper jacket and base under the offside hide. --Hope my info is informative --Drew
Chipshot ,
The 6mm Nosler BT's seem to be quite strongly constructed compared to their .22 equivalents . I have read that the 70 grainers perform well on feral pigs which is a bit of an eye opener . In my experience the 70 grainers and also 55 grainers almost always achieve full penetration on kangaroos up to 140 pounds . As a result I killed 2 with my first shot (at game) out of my current rifle . I have found the 75 gn V Max to be just as accurate and a quicker killer out of my .243 Ackley .

I'm currently shooting 95grn Ballistic Silvertip SBST243A. Why is it that a lighter grain will open and the heavier is flying straight through?
I have had the same problem with 140 nosler
BT's. I shot two elk with my 7mmSTW at250yards. The bullets did not expand just
straight thru. Called nosler and they kept
trying to tell me the lungs were a mess. I
told no four times. They then said I was using the wrong bullet for elk. I hung up as
I was getting no explanation. I now use Swift sirroco's.
If you'll will look a couple topics down at one labled "2 Tx deer shot with SKG's", it might help to understand a little more about terminal ballistics.
Warning! This thread is more than 20 years ago old.
It's likely that no further discussion is required, in which case we recommend starting a new thread. If however you feel your response is required you can still do so.