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Bullet Notes
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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Handloader
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Joined: Aug 22, 2005
Posts: 1032
Location: Phoenix, Arizona

PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 11:36 am    Post subject: Bullet Notes Reply with quote

The ongoing Bullet Poll prompted a pondering on my part of the most important bullet advances I have witnessed in the past 45 years of reloading and hunting. Several stood out, although, I am sure members of this forum can and will add to the list. Here are some of my thoughts:

Nosler Partition: in many ways John Nosler began to change our perception of caliber for game with this bullet. I still have some of the original early lathe turned partitions with relief bands that were almost of gem quality. From the original design we have numerous spin offs, but, all of them adhere to the basic intent of having a rapidly opening bullet that will also penetrate deeply.

Nosler Zipedo: amid all the frangible bullets for 22 centerfires, along came the Zipedo with a tougher jacket and rear driving bands. The Zipedo hung around for a few years but was upgraded and the selection of calibers and weights expanded in the its new incarnation as the Nosler Ballistic Tip. This bullet, in turn, has spawned a whole range of imitators sporting polymer tips.

Speer Hot Core: the boys in Lewiston weren't standing still either and the Hot Core game bullets offer superb results at standard prices. The Hot Cores have been around for decades and I learned just how great they were on deer and antelope when I got my first 25-06. Now "bonded" bullets have been incororated into the offerings of other manufacturers, however, in my testing of bullets none of them offer better performance or accuracy than today's Speer Hot Core.

Barnes X: if Nosler was the leader of the recent past, Barnes has become the innovator of the present, IMO. These copper bullets established a reputation for improved performance on game to the extent that we again re-evaluated the weight and caliber formula for big game as these bullets were so uniformly effective. The Triple Shock eliminated the problems of pressure and fouling and improved the bc and accuracy. It has become one of my mainstay bullets. They work well if you have the magazine depth to use them.

Barnes MRX: it seems Barnes has done it again with a leap into the future by introducing a bullet with the positive qualities of the TSX and adding a shorter bullet per weight with deeper penetration capability owning to the tungsten insert and adopting a polymer tip for instantaneous expansion. I look forward to hearing more on this entry and trying some in a 338WM and 375H&H.

The importance of the copper bullet has another aspect. Increasingly awareness of lead poisoning has diverted from rational information into a fenzy of "concern" by anti hunters and anti gunners. IMO a basis of their hype is related to putting another restriction on the firearm owner. There are ranges where lead is discouraged and there are hunting areas where lead is either restricted or not allowed for big game right now! Barnes gives an alternative and, I am certain, they will be joined by other manufacturers in offering a lead free alternative to effective hunting and target bullets.

I look forward to attenting SHOT 2006 and seeing if any of these developments are being discussed and if any new related products are introduced.
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Handloader
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 2:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Bullet Notes Reply with quote

sorry, I deleted the body and rewrote portions for the follow post.


Last edited by Handloader on Thu Nov 24, 2005 2:13 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Handloader
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 24, 2005 2:11 pm    Post subject: Re: Bullet Notes Reply with quote

The original post addresses rifle hunting bullets mainly. What I didn't acknowledge was significant advances in handgun bullets as well. As in rifle bullets, the handgun bullets have advanced and refined equally with such wonders as the XTP (I've taken two black bear with these and they were flawless performers), the Nosler Partitions and the Barnes X (one elk with this one to date) to mention three that I have used.

Here, however, some of the best refinements have come in the cast bullet arena. Now, we have huge meplate bullets of heavier weight than was common just a decade or so ago. And, these bullets are proving themselves as capable (some would argue they are better) than their jacketed cousins in terms of effectiveness in the larger caliber and with the more powerful handguns. Elmer Keith would probably have a huge grin on his face if he knew how much he had influenced those that were to come after him and continue the perfection of large bore handguns.

I see some irony here as rifle bullets and handgun bullets take somewhat different directions to the same goal, that of effectively killing big game. My limited experience with the 454 Casull and 300gr cast bullets have be eyeopeners as I recently got a nice bull elk with this combo @ 80 some paces. Complete penetration.

From your field experiences on game, what bullets, handgun and rifle, have endeared themselves to you?
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