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statjunk 11-23-2004 07:59 AM

Deer Aren't Dropping
Ok here goes. I have shot 5 deer in my time. I am using a Win M70 in .308. The first three deer that I have shot were with 180gr Federal American Eagle Soft points. All three ran a total of 5 ft combined.

Recently I switched to 165 gr Federal Premium Soft Points because I was shooting 1" groups with it at the range. The last two deer that I shot have both run on me. The second to last deer I shot was at 25 yds, perfect broad side shot right behind the vitals. No exit wound and the deer ran about 70 yds. The last deer I shot was about 70 yds, again a good broad side shot. The deer went down, while trying to shoot another deer outside of my blind I spooked it and it ran into the woods. Before I could get to it a pack of coyotes were heard eating it in the distance. There was no blood trail at all other than the 4 ft length of blood at the poi. I never found the deer so I don't know where I hit it but I am sure it was a pretty good shot.

Is there that much difference in a 165gr and 180gr bullet? Or is it just dumb luck on the last two?


skeeter 7MM 11-23-2004 10:30 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping
I'll assume the bullet your using is the Seirra Gameking BT? If so this bullet performs better at longer distances, the gamekings have never had a rep to be real solid as the jacket is very thin. What is happening is due to velocity the bullets is over expanding, maybe even fraging to bits and not producing a exit by lack of rentention which equals penetration. I used the seirras for one year a long time ago, like you I was in love with their accuracy. My buck was no more than 30 yards and the bullet exploded into bits with no exit or opposite side damage besides a few bone frags in the opposite ribs. This buck travelled 100 yards the blood trail was thick at the intial shot location than tapered to a drip or two...thank good for snow! He had one lung into soup and the second looked partial and blood shot. The doe was 150 yards and the bullet performed flawlessly, leaving a nice sized exit hole..she still ran about 30 yards but was dead on her feet the lungs were torn apart. This was with a 270 win 130 gr bullet. Now mind you this isn't a lot of real field data, but it was enough for me to switch and never look back.

Being your shots appear to be 100 yards or under I would either move up to the 180's or switch to a bullet that is more solid constructed. A 165 Nosler Partition would be a good place to start, I have found them to be quite accurate and they will exit any deer you shoot broadside!

As far as bang and flop, that really is a uncontrolled occurance on a rib shot, some do and other do not, but you take out the lungs and he or she is walking/running dead.

bigcountry 11-23-2004 10:42 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping
Stat, it ain't the bullets you are using. You are expecting alot out of your load. I rarely just have deer fall over. I mean just a few weeks ago I shot a doe thru the heart with a muzzleloader with a 250gr barnes and 150gr of 777 kicking at about 2100fps. Without a heart she made it 50 yards. You never can figure out these animals. But then I shot a 5point with my bow on Sept 15th and it made it 20 yards and fell over.

I have had deer fall where they stand, run upwards of 100 yards with lungs melted, its just the way it is. Sounds to me your seeing pretty typical stuff.

I find the Gamekings to be devastating on deer. Inside and out. Its almost a perfect deer bullet. A good balance of toughness and mushroom. They don't mushroom like a Bullistic Tip but expand more than a barnes. I have shot well over a dozen deer with them handloaded for my 308. The don't like to be pushed over 2700fps, and from what your explaining you well within that arena. Keep hunting.

statjunk 11-23-2004 10:42 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping
How do I know if the

Seirra Gameking BT
is the bullet I am shooting. I am shooting the Federal 165gr Premium that comes in a gold box.


statjunk 11-23-2004 10:47 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping
Can I safely assume that if I buy the noler partition tipped bullets that my accuracy shouldn't change as long as I use the 165gr?


statjunk 11-23-2004 10:48 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping

The problem is that these deer aren't bleeding enough and with no snow I can't track them? Is there a bullet that will leave more of a trail?


bigcountry 11-23-2004 11:07 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping

Can I safely assume that if I buy the noler partition tipped bullets that my accuracy shouldn't change as long as I use the 165gr?
Tracking is something that not my strong suit either. But thru time and experience you will get better at it.

No you can not safely assume. I love partitions, but out of 5 or 6 gun I have l loaded them for, they generally are not a great accuracy bullet. If I get 1" groups, I am very happy. But I rarely find a gun that doesn't like the Sirra gamekings. Bullistic tips are a different story.

Not sure what to tell ya. Sounds like you are hitting them a tad high. Especailly if you see a initial blood pile, and not for a while. That fur soaks alot of it. I try to hit them very low for this purpose with my bow. My experience with 165gr gameking has been they leave the best blood trail in the business with Bullistic tips close second (if you don't hit a shoulder). Same thing with 130gr gameking for my 270. Now Barnes , partitions, TBBC, failsafes don't give the best blood trail but are more big game penetration bullets. Another good one is Hornady interloks. Same class as bullistic tips IMO.

skeeter 7MM 11-23-2004 11:08 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping
Statjunk, on the box one of the ends will say what bullet is used (ie: 165 BTSP).

No it is never safe to assume that any bullet will shoot the same! Best to keep with what you've got or if you have the time head to the range and try a few shots.

I think what you need to do is pay attention to the exact location of the shot, with no snow it can be extremely tough to see specs of blood and no exit hole only makes it tougher as the entrance hole unless large can plug. On a perfect broadside shot I would expect the 165's to get through but apparently are not so that is why I suggested look at something that will hold a together better at higher velocities/close range.

bigcountry 11-23-2004 11:11 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping
One tip for tracking. Get you some Hydrogen Peroxide, and put in a spray bottle. spray on the ground occasionaly after a fresh kill, and where thiers blood, it will bubble. An old archers trick.

BareBack Jack 11-23-2004 11:51 AM

RE: Deer Aren't Dropping
165 grain Nosler Solid Base Boat Tail or the 150 gr Nosler Part. Federal makes both and both are good rounds in the 30-06,should be the same for the 308 Win.
This will punch right through them.

Also try not to crowd the shoulder to much,have alittle space between the shoulder.

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