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Old November 29, 2011, 01:12 PM   #1
scwhitetail
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.308 Win Hunting Ammo- what grain bullet should I use?

I'm getting a new Remington 700 in .308 Winchester with a 24" barrel. I was wondering what grain bullet would be best for the medium-sized whitetail in South Carolina. I expect shots to be within 200 yards, and would like something that can penetrate some brush as well. I haven't gotten into reloading yet, so I am stock with factory loads. Thanks!
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Old November 29, 2011, 01:19 PM   #2
emcon5
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Quote:
something that can penetrate some brush
There is no such animal.

I like 150 grain for .308, shoots a little flatter and hits plenty hard enough for deer.
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Old November 29, 2011, 01:20 PM   #3
sc outdoorsman
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I know people who hunt with 150-180 grain in .308. You probably need to get your rifle a few brands and weights of ammo and see what it prefers. My son and I both have Remington 700s in .30-06, mine likes 150 grain Federal his likes 165 grain Corlokts both are equally effective on whitetails. Good luck with your rifle and hunting.
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Old November 29, 2011, 01:22 PM   #4
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165gr Spitzer, cheap, reliable, deadly accurate..

Then again i just killed 2 deer this past thanksgiving both with match rounds. Neither moved. It's really about shot placement. Buck was shot with a 175gr BT LR, and the doe was shot with a 77gr SMK from my 18" AR. Hell federal soft point will work it's really up to your choice. My dad has shot 150gr Cor-lokt for years and it's never failed him.
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Old November 29, 2011, 01:33 PM   #5
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In my opinion, you should probably avoid 125 grain bullets. anything will do above 125. you're not talking about an ultra velocity round or heavy animal, so for the most part, any good soft point ammo from remington, federal, winchester, or some of the other makers will perform well.

In my opinion, within 200 yards, you can walk into any store there, pick up 150 grain remington core lokt bullets, verify the accuracy and sight in, and be absolutely prepared to take a deer. The design is effective and has proven itself to be a great deer bullet for as long as I've been alive.
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Old November 29, 2011, 01:36 PM   #6
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Congrats on your .308!

I've hunted deer and hogs with .308 since 1988. During that time, I've gone from 150 grain to 165 grain, the weights dictated by the different bullet models, not by a conscious decision to change weights.

After shooting deer in various states with various sizes of deer and hogs, I have found that keeping the game static, either was a good choice. My recommendation is to shoot various loadings and let your gun tell you what it likes. After all, who cares if someone else had great luck with a particular bullet if your rifle won't shoot it well? There are plenty of factory loadings out there to choose from. This can be an expensive proposition, buying boxes pf 20 only to shoot 5-10, but it gets you some trigger time with your new gun to learn it's idiosynchracies. For a good starting point, Hornady, Remington, Federal, or Winchester all make adequate offerings.

As for shooting through brush, I'd advise against it with any loading. Perhaps someone here can produce the studies, but I think the view of a reduction in chances of bullet deflection with slower moving, heavier bullets was disproven some time ago.
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Old November 29, 2011, 01:40 PM   #7
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Since 90 grn 243 bullets work quite well on deer size animals, as do 100 grn 257 bullets, I don't see any reason why the common (probably most common) 150 gr 308 wouldnt work quite well.

I don't shoot factory ammo, but some times glance over the ammo on shelves, If I remember right the 150s are cheaper on the average then 165 & 180s. It may be different in your area.
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Old November 29, 2011, 02:09 PM   #8
scwhitetail
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Thanks guys, I think I'll try out some different brands. I'm leaning towards the 150 gr and the 165 gr, although I'd like to try the 180 as well, but that is probably a little overkill for my situation.
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Old November 29, 2011, 02:16 PM   #9
Brian Pfleuger
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Anything in 308 that's not a varmint bullet will be entirely adequate for whitetail deer at 200 yards or less and, as others have stated, nothing will get through brush. If the bullet hits something, it WILL deflect.

I saw a test done some years back looking at the validity of 12ga slugs (typically 400gr and 12-1300 fps) as "brush busters". I don't recall the exact numbers but the target was like 3 feet past the brush and around 10" diameter. Most slugs that hit brush COMPLETELY missed the target.

A lighter bullet with less inertia striking brush at distances greater than the 3 feet from the target would behave far worse.
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Old November 29, 2011, 02:20 PM   #10
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My Remington liked the 150gr Core Lokts, but I handload for it now. I use the 165gr Sierra Gameking because it practically shoots the same as the 168gr Matchking load I use in it.
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Old November 29, 2011, 02:22 PM   #11
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Thats what i was referring to the 165gr SGK deadly accurate, and puts a good bit of energy into a deer.
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Old November 29, 2011, 06:19 PM   #12
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agreed on the "brush busting."

Nothing can travel at any speed and impact another object without being deflected.
That's just plain newtonian physics.

The situation is exactly the same as the bunt in baseball. That ball hits a resistant object, a great deal of energy is transferred, and some of it is also used up diverting the bullet off of its course.

It doesn't matter how large or small, fast or slow, or how massive the target is. any sort of collision is going to divert any kind of bullet off of it's path significantly.
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Old November 29, 2011, 06:28 PM   #13
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Get several boxes, various manufacturers, of 150, 165 and 180 grain bullets and hunt with the one that your rifle shoots the best.

Congrats on the 308!
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Old November 29, 2011, 07:00 PM   #14
Shooter 973
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.308 Win Hunting Ammo- what grain bullet should I use?

I my memory is correct the 308 was developed around the 147-150 gr. bullet.
I've used that bullet weight on just about every thing and it has never let me down.
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Old November 29, 2011, 07:45 PM   #15
Blackops_2
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That brings up another question whats your twist rate?
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Old November 29, 2011, 07:58 PM   #16
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You can't go wrong with 150gr but I wouldn't consider a .308 a brush gun.
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Old November 29, 2011, 09:04 PM   #17
30Cal
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Ditto for the 150 or 165. Both of those will run clear through. 180's might be harder to find and aren't really doing anything more for you.


Don't shoot through brush. It's a recipe for leaving wounded game in the field and that, sir, is the hallmark of a bad hunter.
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Old November 30, 2011, 06:15 AM   #18
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My M1As love the 150 grain Winchester black bullets and the 168 Federals. My last 4 point dropped in his tracks 175 yards away and the next day my doe only went 25 yards with a solid lung shot at 50 yards. No moving bush shots tho.

KenL has it right in my opinion...
Get an assortment of 150 grainers and see what your rifle likes. Makes a difference.
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Old November 30, 2011, 06:35 AM   #19
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I would be surprized if the twist rate was anything other than a 10 to 1.
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Old November 30, 2011, 06:38 AM   #20
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Whatever is the most accurate.
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Old November 30, 2011, 09:53 AM   #21
natman
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Whatever is the most accurate.
I don't mean to jump on you in particular, but you always see this answer whenever someone ask for a bullet recommendation and it's not particularly good advice. What if the most accurate bullet is a match bullet that is completely unsuitable for hunting? I'll trade an extra 1/4" group size for consistent expansion any day.

Anyway, back to the OP's question, any 150 grain hunting softpoint, such as the Remington Core Lokt, the Winchester Power Point or Federal Power Shok will be just fine for whitetail. Pick among them and then find the one that's most accurate in your gun.

And don't count on anything to shoot through brush.
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Old November 30, 2011, 10:36 AM   #22
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I know people say don't use match ammo, but I have shot a few deer with my 308 using 168gr Hornady Amax match ammo and they dropped where they stood.
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Old November 30, 2011, 11:17 AM   #23
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My .308 likes the Nosler BT's and Sierra GKHP in 165grn but hates the Sierra GK Spitzers in the same weight. I've killed more with a .243 and 90 grn BT's this year than anything else, high shoulder every one and DRT.

Its all about shot placement no matter what you shoot. I have a neighbor that kills them routinely with a .204 Ruger right here in SC, of course they get it in the ear hole or the eye.
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Old November 30, 2011, 11:38 AM   #24
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I would assume anyone hunting deer would know match ammo is not a good choice. If they don't, more education is needed before that person enters the deer woods.

Whatever shoots the most accurately out of your gun and is constructed to take deer sized animals. Only your rifle will tell you which it prefers. What my gun likes makes no difference.
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Old November 30, 2011, 01:46 PM   #25
Palmetto-Pride
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I have killed deer just as dead with Match ammo as I have with any other ammo. So my experience is all the education I need!!! There is no magic bullet I have lost em with 30-06 and dropped em with .223 the only difference was shot placement.

My point is don't think because you are shooting the latest greatest super duper, $69.00 a box ammo that you aren't going to be in for a search if you make a bad shot.
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Last edited by Palmetto-Pride; November 30, 2011 at 02:01 PM.
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