Which Berger 168 for my 280 Ackley?

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by Ridgerunner665, Jul 9, 2015.

  1. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Well-Known Member

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    I've decided to try Berger bullets in my 280 Ackley...but I'm having a bit of trouble deciding which one.

    I'd prefer the standard hunting VLD, but I'm wondering if I'll run into mag length issues with seating depth (single feeding is not an option)...the mag box in my rifle is 3.425", I'm guessing it "might" feed 3.400".....maybe.

    The only reason I'd prefer the standard VLD over the Classic Hunter is the slightly better BC...but in reality it probably wont matter because I'm not likely to shoot over 800 yards...and the slight difference is no big deal, at least by the numbers....I have done some searching both here and elsewhere and cannot find a whole lot of info on how the Classic Hunters behave (terminal performance), I did read the article about them that Berger has out there (New Zealand)...I was hoping some of you may have some pics and experiences to share.

    Also, just out of curiousity...I've seen some using the 180 Hybrid, I know its not exactly a hunting bullet...but would it work in the 280 Ackley? I figure I can send it at about 2,835 fps...tops...that should be an accurate estimate, I use QuickLoad and have my powder mapped out pretty good (MRP)....but so far the heaviest bullet I've shot in it is 160 grains.

    I'm not sure what has me wanting to do this all the sudden...no particular reason pertaining to bullet performance at least...but I got to thinking about powder charges and barrel life...that makes the heavies look better than the 150 ABLR's I've been shooting...and their accuracy is fine, I didn't have any trouble at all finding a usable/accurate load with them.

    .65 MOA, first load I tried...but its a warm one, 3,120 fps at 63,000 psi...won't be very easy on that expansive brass.

    If my math is right, and I believe it is...I can hit a node with the 168's at about 59-60,000 psi...~2,900 fps

    With 180's I can also hit that same node...but it'll be a warm one too at 63,000+ psi...and 2,830 fps.

    Looking at wind drift of all those loads (using Litz BC's)...there isn't one bit of noticeable difference between them...nothing over 1-2 inches....which is easily lost in everything else....remember, 800 yards max range....whitetail deer mainly, and elk if I ever draw in TN...with a few coyotes mixed in there as I see them (targets of opportunity)


    Thoughts, input, experiences, all comments welcome

    Edited to add: 24 inch 1 in 9" twist barrel
     
  2. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Well-Known Member

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    I gave in to temptation and ordered me some 168 Classic Hunters...but I'd still like to hear of anybody else's experiences with these....specifically between 400 and 800 yards.
     
  3. AZShooter

    AZShooter Well-Known Member

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    I don't think you will be disappointed in your choice.

    Two of my friends use the 168 classic hunter in their 7 Rem mag rifles with velocities around 3100 fps. One shot an antelope well past 500 yds. The other shot a cow elk at under 100 yds and commented it was the fastest kill of an elk he had ever had.

    I chose this bullet for my 7mm/375 wildcat, vel 3268 fps, and will also use it in a 284 win I will be building shortly.
     
  4. BEEMAN

    BEEMAN Well-Known Member

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    I shoot the 168 classic hunter out of my Cooper 280 AI. They shoot very good. I can't comment about terminal effects of the bullet as I have not harvested any animals. The only powder I have tried is H4831SC. My Cooper also has a 24" barrel and I shoot them at 2880 fps. Drops are spot on out to 700 yds.
     
  5. ramrod79

    ramrod79 Well-Known Member

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    I was having trouble with VLD talked with BEEMAN and switched to CH they shot awesome and I didn't notice much differance down range But it was worth the switch for what I gained.
     
  6. Hornhunter32

    Hornhunter32 Well-Known Member

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    I shoot the 168 CH out of my 280 AI right at 2900 FPS. They shoot great, but I haven't killed anything with them yet. I plan to use this combo for my once in a lifetime ND bull elk this fall.
     
  7. Ridgerunner665

    Ridgerunner665 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the replies...

    I've changed my mind though, I've been trying to talk myself into using Berger's and I think I almost succeeded...then fell off the wagon....I cancelled the order for the Classic Hunters and I'm just gonna go with the tried and true 160 grain Nosler Accubond.

    Leaves a little BC on the table but I can work with that at the ranges I'm gonna be shooting...I'd rather have the penetration of the AB.

    I've used Bergers, or rather my son has, in his 30-06 (175 VLD's)...they worked, but I wasn't impressed with them in that platform...if I had a big gun (338) and could take advantage of the 300 grain slugs at good speed it'd be different.

    Most of my shooting will be 600 yards or less...there are 2 spots that may present a shot at more than that...max being 790 yards....I know I'll feel better with the Accubonds, they were my first choice anyway...then I got caught up in the Accubond LR's for a bit, but their inconsistency turned me away from those...thats when I started considering Berger...

    But I'm a shoulder shooter, always have been....near or far...I like busting them shoulders and dropping them there where they stand...I'm a pretty decent tracker but I'd rather not do all that if I don't have to...shooting shoulders has proven, to me, to be an effective means of anchoring deer...and given that, and the fact that I'm just as likely to get a shot at 6 yards as I am at 600...I'm going with the plain old vanilla Accubond bullets.

    My rifle shoots them pretty good at 3,003 fps...