Less than ideal

.300 RUM, Elk, 225 yards, perfect side shot, well placed hit, Hornady GMX. Complete pass through with evidently no expansion.
I would say this is a perfect example of too much gun for the game/range. Well, specifically too much bullet.  Animal was tracked over a mile before it was located laying down… still breathing, still bleeding. The bullet had torn through both lungs and a ventricle of the heart, but not much actual damage. Without expansion, there was very little shock effect… almost no blood-shot tissues internally, and the exit wound looked like maybe a .40 caliber hole.  The hit was observed, clean, and animal was able to run away without so much as a limp.
Take the same situation, same animal, same range, same gun… and load the SST bullet instead of the solid, or a classic Sierra Game King, and I bet that beast would have been dead right there… because that’s what I’ve witnessed before. Bullets that open up faster will deliver more shock, and that is what’s going to put the animal on the ground. Roy Weatherby discovered this many decades ago, and evidently this is a lesson we are still learning.

6 thoughts on “Less than ideal”

  1. Real bullets have lead in them. One who can track a wounded elk for over a mile should have realized that.

  2. The Barnes X bullets had a spotty reputation at first, too. As much as I like Hornady products I’ll wait until the teething problems are worked out with a new bullet.

    Like you said – there are plenty of proven performers out there.

  3. Years ago when I first started reloading and Barnes X bullets were just getting popular, I had a 110 grain bullet coming out of my .300 Win Mag at around 3700 fps. Had a perfect double lung shot on a NC buck at 50 yards. That was the first deer I ever had to go looking for. The factory Hornady SST 150 grain on the other hand drops them in their tracks every time. Always aim for high shoulder shot no matter what I am shooting now though.

  4. I have had mixed results with the 140 grain X bullet out of my .270 Weatherby. Break the shoulders and the results are “Dear God that Aoudad did a triple barrel roll when you hit him”! Shoot the vitals behind the shoulder and it does not always open up. The 140 grain ballistic tip is impressive but just too explosive at an m/v of 3400 fps. I hit one whitetail in the “sweet spot” behind the shoulder; the explosive expansion left a 4″ exit wound exactly opposite the entrance, blew shrapnel from left to right through the stomach and entrails, and left the green plastic tip embedded in the tenders. The Partition in the same weight and velocity has flattened every animal I have shot with it, in it’s tracks, not a step taken.

    1. I’ve had the same problem with the ballistic tips at high velocity. With my .270 Win I carry 2 loads for Whitetail. 130 grain Accubond for woods and if I’m hunting an open area where I expect a shot past 100 yards the ballistic tips work great. Both bullets have same BC and powder charge so they shoot to same point of aim. I have shot alot of deer and the key to dropping them in their tracks for me is the shoulder shot. You lose some meat but so far never lost the whole deer because I couldn’t find him.

  5. Speer Mag-Tip, Hornady Inter-lock have both been very reliable for us. Sierra Pro-Hunter bullets used to work really well until they hardened the lead for the Magnum crowd. They don’t work so well in a .300 Savage any more. ‘Standard’ bullets are getting harder to come by since ‘Magnum’ has become the standard.

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