View Full Version : What do you think of my friend's philosophy on hunting bullets?

January 10, 2005, 11:24 PM
My acquaintance who is going hog hunting, and taking me along, if I can go after all, with my brother, in Feb was pontificating with me further on calibers and such for these pigs. He's sees my MAK90 and explains that that would be perfect for the pigs. I say, yeah, if could pick up some soft-nosed hunting rounds, then it would be *ok* for that. No he says, you want a ball ammo like that that passes clean through without expanding. Hogwash I said - you want it to go all the way through, but you want it to expand also, ideally. No he says, last time he hunted the pigs, there was a tiny entrance hole and a tiny exit hole from his .270, and one pig was DRT, and one only went about 40 yards. He further explained his hunting philosophy, after explaining that he's hunted his whole life, and is quite the expert on the subject, and it's this. *IF* he is trophy hunting, then yes, he wants a soft-point, bonded and or/partition bullet that expands nicely and makes a big exit hole, just to be extra sure it doesn't get away. But if he's just meat hunting then he doesn't want that big exit hole that ruins a lot of meat; rather a small entrance and exit hole alone puts the game down quickly and easily, when shot through the vitals. He says if shot through the vitals, it doesn't matter at all how much expansion takes place - it's going to kill quickly and humanely, so a hard spire point bullet is not only not a worse choice, it's preferred. In fact, says he, that's why I use these Win ballistic silver tips, with the sharp point, see, it passes right through. No, says I, those plastic tips are designed to help start expansion quickly, soon after the initial penetration, not to drill a small hole through. And besides, if you do hit the animal less-than-perfectly, you want a big ol' exit would from an expanded bullet. No, says he, if I don't hit them in the vitals, I don't want to clean up that crap anyway; I'd rather let them get away and die on their own, instead of having to clean them with a blown-out gut or some such. So who's right? I'd always understood that you ALWAYS want a well-constructed, soft point bullet when hunting any largish game, even if thin-skinned.... But anyone share his philosophy generally? He's a one-shot, one-kill kind of guy he says, and he sounds like he's pretty consciencious about getting zeroed and knowing his rifle dead nuts, but it seems like he's off base on the hard bullet thing. Another puzzling fact is, given that he says he was using the Win ballistic tips, then is he telling the truth about the tiny pinkie-sized exit wound from a .270 with 130 grainers...is that possible? These were 100-150 lb pigs.

Smokey Joe
January 11, 2005, 12:05 AM
With your "friend's" attitude toward inhumanely allowing a gut-shot animal to go off by itself to die, my first thought is, that that's highly unsportsmanlike, and do you really want to hunt with someone like that.

Sorry if that sounds harsh. My impression is that he's a good enough shot that that doesn't happen often, knows his weapon and knows how to use it. But part of a hunter's duty (besides to himself, to his weapon, and to the landowner) is to his quarry. I cannot condone allowing an animal to stagger off into the brush to die—in agony?—on its own. Especially just to avoid an inconveniently messy cleaning. That's really callous.

There are secondary questions here, regarding the best bullet for pigs, and the terminal ballistics of Nosler Ballistic Tips, but IMHO, they ARE secondary. I wouldn't hunt with the guy.

January 11, 2005, 08:16 AM
Nor would I. How old is this guy 21,22? If your not sure of your shot, don't take it!! (unless your being eatin' up by a hog) If your hunting, your responsibility is to your quarry. Kill it quick, clean, and humainly. IF he's as good as he claims, a head shot messes up no meat and they are most certainly DRT.

He also doesn't read either otherwise he would know about Nosler and Combined Technology and bullet construction.

January 11, 2005, 09:25 AM
No he definitely doesn't read. He's one of these guys that learned it all when he was a kid and therefore knows it all. Kinda what I thought - thanks. Yeah, that attitude is inhumane, isn't it?

January 11, 2005, 09:43 AM
anything bigger than a 22WM is overkill for hogs.

Rich Lucibella
January 11, 2005, 09:47 AM
Intermediate is misspelled in your sig line.

January 11, 2005, 10:47 AM
If a bad shot happens while hunting a game animal, its every hunters responsibility to track there pray and expire it as quickly as possible, We owe it to the animal, sometimes it don't happen that way, you end up tracking the animal for miles, never to find it, that can happen, but at least you followed up on your shot and tried to recover the game, yes the animal suffered, but you did not make a bad shot on purpose, and you did your job to folow up and track the animal, but never just let the animal crawl off to die suffering, follow up and expire the animal quickly and humanly as well, a head shot shuts the lights out quick, I carry small arms for a follow up shot if needed, bottom line is practice enough to be efficient to expire pray with one shot. Like I said it don't always happen that way, so be sure to follow up and check for blood all the times, even if you think you missed, sometimes animals don't display that they have been hit right away, due to adrenaline etc... Aim small hit small. RAMbo.

January 11, 2005, 04:20 PM
A clean, humane kill should be the number one priority, well above "saving" any meat from bullet damage. I've heard theories like that before, and it cracks me up. Usually, the same people wanting to use too small of a caliber, or FMJ bullets to "save meat" are the same folks that wouldn't spend an extra 5 minutes to cut all the meat off the ribs and neck of a deer and would just throw it to the coyotes because it is too much trouble.

I look at it this way, if I ruin part of a deer shoulder because I used my .270 with soft points, it's a hell of a lot less wastefull than losing a whole deer because I used too small of a caliber, or FMJ, and couldn't find it when it ran off!!!! It's a pretty simple concept.

January 11, 2005, 04:35 PM
You might want to point your friend to any of the many good books and articles on terminal performance. You'll find that FMJ is just not the way to get good terminal ballistics.

January 12, 2005, 02:06 PM
anything bigger than a 22WM is overkill for hogs.

PSE, after scrolling down and looking at the hog on this page:


I think we can safely conclude that you don't know what in the hell you're talking about. Thank you, as anything that helps me separate the errornet wheat from the chaff is appreciated, for future purposes.

January 12, 2005, 04:42 PM
you need to introduce this guy to humane hunting any hunter knows that its better to gut a gutshot deer that fell down quick than have to track it for hours or let it go because you're too dim to buy the right kind of bullets. so moving on the ballistic silvertip is a good round but once again your friend doesnt know what the heck hes talking about. unless you can convince him to use a 130 or 150 powerpoint on hogs from his .270 i suggest that you find a new partner that guy is nuts. and if hes so allfired worried about losing meat and knows his gun so well he should shoot animals in the head but once again with a proper bullet. to be humane you should eliminate as many variables as you can ie: human error (know your weapon well), bullet performance (use a bullet of appropriate weight and construction for the job at hand) i just cant believe that guy

January 14, 2005, 08:11 PM
Your friend may be trying to state that penetration is very important when hunting hogs. Any frontal shot has to penetrate that plate of gristle, and then some pretty tough muscle.
Picking the proper bullet for the game you are hunting has always been important. Expansion vs Penetration, the question keeps popping up.
When hunting hogs with a 30/30 or a .44 Mag, I like soft point, heavy bullets. When I use an 8mm Mauser cartridge I again like heavy bullets. The Sierra 220 grain has worked well for me.
I have to agree with the majority here, that improper shot placement, or improper bullet selection that results in a wounded animal is just bad form.

January 17, 2005, 12:08 AM
I have killed lots of pigs. The best shot is with a HP to the neck. Drops them dead in there tracks. A 22! No way! Well maybe a good head shot! You need something with a good thump. 45-70 and 444 marlin work well. All I use now is a mini 30 with 122gr HPs and only to the neck. A FMJ? it better be a good shot! I never make a body shot on a pig because it will run. And they will run places you can't go. If you can't make a one shot drop kill don't make the shot! just IMHO. I think your buddie is nuts to make a gut shot and let the pigs run off. I know the coyotes like it.

Robert Garner
January 28, 2005, 07:32 PM
using full metal jacket at least here will lead to
fines ,confiscation of
weapon and or
loss of huntin priveleges
FMJ are designed to wound
not kill
except for 303 brittish
but thats another story
and still not acceptable

January 28, 2005, 08:18 PM
My own opinion is that you need a bullet which will cause the maximum amount of bleeding so as to drain the blood out quickly. Nothing quite so unappatising as trying to cook bloody pork. So mushrooming is good.

Questions of ethics and efficiency aside, hunting hogs in my state with a rifle during deer season you have to use centerfire mushrooming ammo or a .22 because the game warden will give you a choice of 'really' hunting either deer with the former or squirrels and rabbits with the latter. If you're caught with hardball ammo they will give you a fine and take your gun and pickup truck. Ditto goes with one of those 30 round banana mags, unless you've had the forethought to have already plugged it so it will only take the maximum allowable rounds.

January 30, 2005, 01:19 AM
Now i am not much of a hunter(never been yet) but its my understanding of the ethics that IF you shoot an animal it is your responsability to place your shot where it is goin to kill the animal and if that doesn't happen its your responsability to track the animal and make sure it is dead and use it and i also feel that its up to the hunter to choose the best ammo suited to the hunt and ball ammo to me screems the long range target shootin i have done with the bcra not hunting besides it isn't even legal to hunt with ball ammo in bc or anywhere eltse that i know of (i know now that i have opened my big mouth that some one is gonna send me a message telling just where i can hunt with fmj) as this particular type of ammo was designed by the military to wound as many people as possable to tie up the enimies resourses

January 30, 2005, 08:53 AM
I have a lot of Mean things to say about your friend. I think I will keep them to myself........

Brian Dale
February 4, 2005, 09:27 PM
Hey, Young_Buck,

Expecting to get flamed? Notice the silence ...


February 11, 2005, 06:55 AM
Any fur hunters on here use solids?

February 11, 2005, 09:15 PM
Any fur hunters on here use solids?

I never was a fur hunter, but I guided whitetail hunts in South Texas for about five years. I carried a 1968 vintage Rem 700 in .30-06. I loaded Hornady 220gr FMJs, in the event that I had to shoot at a client's deer. I wanted to ruin as little meat and hide as possible. Shot one time in 5 years. Scope was full of ......well.......a white tail. Exit wound was in the throat.

You'd a had to been there. :rolleyes:

February 11, 2005, 11:18 PM
That particular trajectory is bound to hit the vitals, I'd say. Talk about a wound channel.

Smokey Joe
February 12, 2005, 12:12 AM
And that is that you will get lots of disagreement and flames. Seems like everyone here is in agreement with you--and me--re First Freedom's friend. As Bryan Dale said, notice the silence. Nicely put, Brian!

February 24, 2005, 03:31 PM
I will tackle a different part of his flawed philosophies, the one which is that a FMJ bullet won't ruin meat. Full Metal Jacketed bullets can and will tumble, and are in many ways more unpredictable than a good soft point or controlled expansion bullet, as they can bend, break, and then take an unexpected left turn at the rump roast.

A .308" caliber FMJ bullet going sideways through the shoulder blade will ruin a lot of meat. Heck, a .308" bullet boring straight through can send enough bone splinters into the adjoining area to ruin a lot of meat.

Blood shot meat and bone splinters happen sometimes, As do gutshot deer. You make the most of it.

February 25, 2005, 07:33 AM
capnrik's Hornady 220 grain .30 will have been a roundnose, with a fairly heavy jacket. Such bullets generally plough a straight(ish) path as long as they do not clip the rounded surface of very heavy bone - or otherwise do not deform due to a thin jacket or other inconsistancy. This is why they were (and often still are) the mainstay of many dangerous game and pachyderm hunters. Some of the pioneering modern makers like A-Square started making them from homogenous heavy alloys that have a reputation, like the better traditional jacketed types, of being reloadable in some cases, the only "deformity" after impact being the engaving of the rifling.

It is well documented from the inception of such bullets and their use in places like Africa and India that a long heavy roundnose solid that rakes an animal from stem to stern (or visa versa) including the vitals, will ensure it's imminent demise. And their reliability in this regard means that an animal can be shot from any angle.

Pointed FMJ bullets on the otherhand are not stable, will sometime deviate wildly, and are subject to tumbling. But when they tumble they generally seem to turn once or twice and continue tail end first where the most weight is. I think velocity is probably a significant factor here, along with the actual bullet and size of the animal etc. I would say the smaller the animal the greater the likleyhood of a pointed bullet literally tumbling throughout it's path and exit.

February 25, 2005, 10:04 AM
I use an AK variant and find it is perfect for hogs in the brush I hunt in being that all shots are within 50 yards and sometimes very rarely I get a 75-100 yard shot. I use hollowpoints and have dropped every hog I've shot. A well-placed shot (head or high-neck) with solids should also work. As far as hunting ethics go, I don't see hogs as game. They root our pastures so badly and destroy fences so that it costs us money. I will not pass up eating a smaller sow under 150lbs, but anything bigger we can't seem to even give away, so we drag them to a corner of the pasture where we won't smell them much and let them feed buzzards. Hogs are ag-pests to us- no different than a big rat would be in your home.

As far as the .22 goes, I don't recommend it, but my brother-in-law's father has downed many pigs with one. He shoots the spine somewhere and claims they rarely run more than 20 yards. He likes to stun them so they'll bleed out quickly and taste good. He lives in the woods of deep-East Texas and is probably as good at killing hogs as I am at killing beers, so my guess is that he has developed his own way that works for him. I can say that at least he eats them all. It must be something they eat on our ranch that makes them taste so awful because other people here and elsewhere swear they taste great, but few of mine ever tasted any good.

If I cleaned all the hogs I killed, I could probably feed all the orphan kids in the State of Texas but after one bite of the biguns, they'd never eat another bite. I don't know why I draw such a line between deer and hogs. I'll take just about any shot I can on a hog (because they cost me money), yet, this deer season I passed on 26 deer that I couldn't get a head-shot on. Maybe it is because deer don't cost me anything and don't tear up anything but g'ma's roses (which I think is pretty funny anyway).

February 25, 2005, 10:59 AM
Wasting meat = inevitable.

Chance of having the animal you shot get away and die on it's own = deplorable.

I hunt with a .50 Black powder. Rule 1: Don't shoot unless your sure of your shot. (I practice till I can hit an 8" pie pan everytime with 5 shots at 100 yards.) Rule 2: Hit where you are sure you will bring the animal down cleanly and humanly. In the event of a runner, track and make sure. Rule 3: Use as much of the animal as you can, and cleanup the remains (bury at least 2 feet deep).

A .50cal BP round will do some serious damage and I have had whole front quarters wasted. But I don't care since the animal I shot died quickly and cleanly.