Tipped VS OTM/HP

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by Calvin45, Jul 9, 2019.


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  1. Tipped

    48.5%
  2. OTM

    51.5%
  1. Calvin45

    Calvin45 Well-Known Member

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    I've had lots of food for thought over the last few weeks in other threads I've started or participated in.

    I'm wanting to start a conversation about the merits of tipped projectiles and open tip match/match hollowpoint projectiles, pros and cons, which do you prefer to use, etc. All opinions, experiences and stories, explanations for preference welcome.

    I realize its a very broad and possibly unanswerable question to just say "which bullet is better?" so to narrow things down a bit here's a few of the questions I'd like to hear you chime in on

    1. accuracy potential. In theory the OTM bullets are simpler therefore less easy to screw up therefore potentially more consistently accurate, however theory and reality often don't line up. Which do you find groups tightest at distance and experiences less vertical stringing due to small deviations in BC from one bullet to the next?

    2. Consistency - have you observed any advantage in lot to lot and even bullet to bullet consistency between tipped projectiles and conventional hpbt match bullets? weight, overall length, base to ogive measure, bearing surface distance, meplat uniformity, concentricity, etc...

    3. Sensitivity - have you observed in your rifles any increase in "finickiness" in one or the other bullet styles, as in unforgiving of seating depth, changes in other components, even neck tension etc. I realize that in theory the tip in no way affects interior ballistics but...if enough people report a phenomena it must be looked into.

    4 Terminal performance - no need to discuss this if it's not what you're shooting them for, but for those who have used both on game at any distance, do you have a preference for tipped or non-tipped high BC projectiles, and why? What have you observed? In theory the tipped bullets should open up more reliably at low impact velocity as the tip is covering a much larger hollowpoint than what is found in an OTM bullet, but again...well I've already stated my awareness of the discrepancy between theory and observation that sometimes shows up.

    If there's anything else you'd like to chime in with pertinent to this comparison, feel free!
     
  2. cohunt

    cohunt Well-Known Member

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    #4-- I know a guy who has tested lots of different bullets for expansion, in his testing the HP bullets expand better than the tipped bullets--both at high velocity and low velocity

    even though some manufactures claim that the tip helps promote expansion, the question is "over what?" he even compared same weight ttsx barnes to tsx barnes both at 50 yards, and "reduced load" longer ranges and the non tipped seems to open more reliably and to a larger diameter and quicker than the tipped bullets
    the downfall of non tipped is they loose a bit of BC to their tipped brothers. He even went so far as to remove the tip from several different bullets and then compare expansion, and once again the bullet with the removed tip expanded better than the tipped version to some extent

    the smaller the HP, the less reliable the expansion though--hence the reason that HH bullets use a minimum HP diameter of 1.5mm
     
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  3. Calvin45

    Calvin45 Well-Known Member

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    I've added a poll to this, please cast your vote! I think I know how you might answer already....
     
  4. Calvin45

    Calvin45 Well-Known Member

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    Surprised there’s not more feedback, just bumping this. Surely some of you are opinionated enough to state your mind :)
     
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  5. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

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    OTM are my preference over all except some very limited custom stuff, I just don't see the consistency with tipped bullets and get a broader range of function, as in having shot a bunch I'll see more extreme expansion or under expansion than right in the middle performance.
    Definitely more accurate from a measuring small groups stand point though.
     
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  6. Canhunter35

    Canhunter35 Well-Known Member

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    It takes a lot of shooting and a willingness to try something that maybe hasn’t worked out in the past to have a fair opinion to answer questions like you’ve posed
    I should give Berger’s more of a fair shake I suppose based on so many guys experience with them, but I’ve just never found them to be any better than other bullets for accuracy.
    In terms of terminal performance I’m more confident in tipped bullets performing on game than otm bullets(that’s in the realm of match bullets, excluding hollow points)
    At the moment for absolute accuracy I’d try Sierra followed by scenars.
    Hornady stuff is okay within same lot but they can really vary from lot to lot and I use a lot of hornady stuff
     
  7. LVJ76

    LVJ76 Well-Known Member

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    I've never used a HP bullet for hunting. I've used Partitions, Ballistic Tips and Ballistic Silvertips, SST's, Core lokts and other lead tip or polymer tipped bullets and have had no issues with performance for the exception of some partitions not expanding once.

    I have 2 boxes of Sierra HPBT Gamekings but have not tried them yet. So, cant really comment on the OTM/HP bullet performamce
     
  8. codyadams

    codyadams Well-Known Member

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    I have taken game with Ballistic tips, hornady spire points, speer hot cores, sst's, A-Max's, ELD-M's, Sierra Gamekings, and Bergers. For long range, I have only used Bergers, A-Max's and ELD-M's. For close range, I lean towards the exposed lead tip bullets, however they all worked well and killed well, though the sst's and eld-m's were just flat violent and I lost a ton of meat, even with shots behind the shoulder, and they didn't kill any faster than the other lead tipped bullets that had less meat damage. The Bergers worked well for me at close range, and though meat damage on one particular kill was insane (it was a quartered away shot that hit a large section of spine before penetrating into the lungs) meat damage was very similar to exposed lead tipped bullets. However, at extended ranges is where I began to see a larger difference. The hollow point Bergers were much more consistent than the eld-m's were for me. Very little meat damage, 1-2" exits, and nearly all DRT, and never had to track an animal. I cannot say the same for the eld-m's in my experience, though I was hoping they would work well.

    Cody.
     
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  9. ronstone09

    ronstone09 Well-Known Member

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    I lean toward the nosler partitions or accubonds ! I've had long disscusions with walt berger regatrding his bullets and I think there is no better bullet for target shooting but big game I rely on nosler !
     
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  10. bubbaonpc

    bubbaonpc Member

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    I got caught up in the "pretty color tips" and they do shoot accurate, but I tracked more deer after using pretty tips...close up. Seems they are not my best choice (heart/lungs) for 50-100 yard shots on NC Mountain whitetails...while pushing 3000 FPS. Tiny hole in...Tiny hole out. ZERO Expansion. Deer shot 200 yards seemed to hit the ground. So,2 years back, I slowed my loads and had better results. Last year I went back to Lead tips at moderate speed for Woods hunting...had my BT's and SST's for the 200+ yard blinds. I know, OVER Thinking short shots, but thats part of the FUN of reloading...and in the Mountains, a deer running 100-200 yards means they probably went straight down hill and I've got to get them back UP that hill. You guys out in Open Country, where you have to pack out your meat, have to be better prepared and use every advantage. I'm just getting old and fat, with a bad back...I like to see em Bang/Flop... Guess it is time to go back to Partitions... 25 years ago, who cared, young n tough, drag em all day and brag to friends, "how tough it was"... We short yardage hunters need to pay better attention to our bullet choices...and the speed we shoot em. 1000 lbs vs 150 lbs is a huge difference in "needed bullet"...
     
  11. Huggy

    Huggy Well-Known Member

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    I've wondered that point myself and theorize that the jackets of the tipped bullets "may" be a bit thinner to promote upset yet be tough enough to prevent deformation when jammed into a magazine or when shoved from the magazine into the chamber, etc.
    That is one idea and even if you section a projo to measure metal thickness, you could find it typical of the same manufacturers OTM projos but not be able to see any change in metallurgy because the jacket had been heat treated to achieve a specific temper thus allowing easier (or tougher) upset.
    Hmm.
    Inquiring minds wanna know
     
  12. Calvin45

    Calvin45 Well-Known Member

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    I see looking at the poll we’re at a 50/50 split in stated preference, 9 votes each.
     
  13. Frog4aday

    Frog4aday Well-Known Member

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    Here's a data point to consider (see picture.) It looks like three of the four "tipped" bullets opened up at 800 yards, albeit one didn't open up much, whereas the OTM (Berger) did not. But to be fair to Berger, many have reported that they've had to check and be sure the hollowpoint was actually OPEN and they've used needles or sharpened-straightened paperclips to be sure the 'hole' was there before using them in the field on game. That's not hard to do if the bullet then 'works' as desired.
    upload_2019-7-12_17-9-17.png
     
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  14. Frog4aday

    Frog4aday Well-Known Member

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    When Hornady discovered, during doppler BC testing of bullets, that the plastic tips in these 'tipped' bullets were melting downrange, and that was jacking up their 'advertised' BCs, the next question I had (which they did not answer as far as I know) was - "What happens to the plastic tip?"
    Does it:
    1) melt and fall out? (that would seem to be a 'good thing' for game performance as it then becomes a nice hollow-point.)
    2) melt and and flow into the hollow cavity inside the tip? (that would be a 'bad thing' for on game performance as the bullet is more like an FMJ, in a sense, at that point.)

    I'm assuming neither happens every time, which is why performance and reports from people are so VARIABLE on how the 'tipped' bullets work. Frankly, I'd just as soon use the OTM bullets and avoid the "what's the plastic tipped bullet going to do THIS time?" suspense. But when you make an OTM bullet aerodynamic, there sure isn't much of a hollowpoint there! And if that isn't open enough, fluid can't get inside to open it up. And it can get 'bent' on entry, making it perform more like an FMJ at that point. Again, VARIABLE performance.

    It seems lead tipped bullets are more of a 'sure thing', but they aren't "sexy" nor are they as aerodynamic. Trade-offs - they are everywhere.
     
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