View Full Version : High dollar ammo and "BOOLITS"

September 22, 2009, 05:06 AM
So would anyone be willing to enter into dicussion regarding the "Premium" VS. "Cheap" ammo? I buy Winchester .30-30 or shotgun ammo in the lowest price scale for either round.

For the sake of discussion we will just say that your rifle/shotgun puts any and all ammo into a sub 3 inch group at hunting distance to avoid this becoming an accuracy discussion. Strictly a kill performance discussion.
I understand them cheap rounds may not have a 100% consistent flower petal shaped mushroom.
So have at it folks... From "JUNK" To jumpin' juniper berries... What determines what you buy? I am yet to pay 16 bucks for a box of ammo but Junior bought some of them Hornady LR...

September 22, 2009, 05:53 AM
If you are happy with a cheap ammo for your .30-30 shoot it. Hornady's Leverevolution ammo isn't going to make your rifle better at killing animals when hunting, but it might extend your effective range. I see no point in making the .30-30 into a rifle it is not. What the I see the .30-30 as, is an effective medium game cartridge out to 150 yards that I can extend to 200 if needed. Especially since I just shoot an old M94 with buckhorn sights.

September 22, 2009, 06:32 AM
Havent bought new ammo since starting reloading.... no need to.... I feel that one will kill just as good as the other reguarding factory/reloaded.... only mushrooms i worry about dont come up till spring... got a morrel last spring big nough I nearly had to cut it down with a chainsaw and drag it up the hill with my honda civic...

September 22, 2009, 07:49 AM
HD, before I start - I always enjoy your posts. My experience has shown that the bullet, at 30-30 velocities, is not important. The most impressive kill I ever witness was a 12yr old boy shooting a doe at 50 yards with a 30-30 using 150 SuperX. She bounced off the ground at the shot. Full penetration and heart, lungs, liver jello. I considered using premiums when I was using 145 Speers in mine and a friends 7mmRM. At 3130, the kills were impressive, but the damage was horrific. In on instance, a front quartering shot almost disemboweled a 150# buck. Lost some of a front shoulder, both tenderloins and most of a rear quarter. The only time I'd use premium bullets would be hunting quarry that weighs more than 500#.

September 22, 2009, 10:12 AM
If it works in YOUR gun for what YOU need it to do, and you're happy with the results, then it doesn't matter. You didn't want this to be an accuracy thread, but in many cases, that is EXACTLY what separates the inexpensive from the more expensive ammunition

Brian Pfleuger
September 22, 2009, 11:09 AM
If accuracy was identical then I'd buy whatever was cheap. Expansion means nothing to me. I've shot enough deer with 12ga slugs that don't expand a millimeter to know that a hole of any size in both lungs beats a great big mushroomed bullet through the guts.

The only thing I hunt with a rifle is woodchucks with a 204. I have seen fairly considerable accuracy variation with different brands but it's not price dependent so I buy whatever is most accurate, I don't care if it's $12.99 a box (them were the days) or $22 a box. Again, assuming equal accuracy, I'd buy whatever is cheap. A 40gr bullet at near 4000fps does wonders on a woodchuck, expansion or not.

September 22, 2009, 11:22 AM
I usually research several bullets that will work for intended purpose and start with the cheapest.
FWIW I run plain old Hornady 170gr Interlocks in my 30-30 they just work like they're suposed to every time.if I want to shoot beyond it's range I get the 308 out.

Willie Lowman
September 22, 2009, 11:30 AM
to avoid this becoming an accuracy discussion.
Well, yeah but accuracy is a factor for some people.

I feed my 870 Remington Sluggers. I don't get shots much past 75 yards where I hunt and I have never had a lick of trouble from my gun/slug combo.

My uncle uses a Ithaca Deer Slayer and Copper Solid sabot slugs. The accuracy he gets from this combo (he's been shooting the same gun as long as I can remember) must be seen to be believed. He kills deer at twice the range I ever take shots at.

But I am talking about 12 gauge slugs here. It's a big hole all the way through. My cheap slugs kill 'em just as dead.

September 22, 2009, 01:07 PM
For most game deer sized and under any modern SP bullet, of normal for caliber weight, is going to work well. In thirty caliber anything from 150gr to 180 gr CoreLokts or Power Points are going to kill a deer. On the other hand, how many bullets do you need to shoot while hunting? Why not have the best and most accurate for a few dollars more?

I would use premium bullets if I expected unusual circumstances. If I wanted a light for caliber bullet for reduced recoil for a new shooter I would look to a Barnes TSX or a bonded SP. Or if hunting bear, elk or moose even though heavy for caliber bullets can achieve much the same performance. But hunting deer out to 200 yds I don't see the benefit of premium bullets if you use a decent weight. When I buy hunting ammo I generally just get the Remington CoreLokts. But when I buy bullets for reloading I get the heavier Ballistic Tips or Partitions. :D

September 22, 2009, 01:14 PM
I shop like you do, brent

September 22, 2009, 01:36 PM
For anything shot in quantity I go cheap. With ammo for hunting I get the best I can find. My reasoning is that I may take 3-4 shots a year at deer and I expect each shot to result in a quickly dead deer. The cost for premium stuff is negligible considering a box of 20 may last me 5 years.

September 22, 2009, 08:53 PM
I think that you usually get what you pay for. However, the cheapest (American made) hunting bullets today are probably better by a long shot (pun intended) than the best bullets 50 years ago.

I do buy premium shotgun ammunition. I have seen alot problems with patterns and shot to shot consistency in the 100 round special packs of shotgun ammo. Not to mention that most of my shotgun pursuits require a little more powder or larger shot for quick clean kills.


September 22, 2009, 09:02 PM
If accuracy is not an issue then I shoot the cheapest rounds that I can find that do the job that I want them to do.

My dad has a .22-250 that loves win white box 45 grain hollowpoints. 3 shot groups at .5" are common and 5 shot groups are always under .75". He has no need to step up to premium ammo for dispatching woodchucks or other small game.

My pet rem 700 VSSF perfers win supreme CT/NBT 50 grainers to really shine. They are expensive but well worth it when a chuck is 300+ yards away...and all you can see is his head sticking up in a field.

So I guess it all depend on the rifle and what the intended use is. I always used regular corelocts for deer hunting and never had a problem with them ever...Now I use accutips in my .308 because they are more accurate, but not significantly better in terms of terminal performance on deer.

September 22, 2009, 09:07 PM
Brent, accuracy, shoot placement and reliablility being equal: deer, hogs, etc won't know the difference between a cheap 150 sp or the LE ammo. If you can hit your mark use it.


September 22, 2009, 09:48 PM
I'm with you HD, mostly Winchester @ Wallyworld. I DID buy some LEVERevolution's in .44 Mag last year but Mom was sick and I only got out one day.

Mom passed away the first week of Feb. and I'd give up a lifetime in the field to have her back but that's not the way the wheel spins.

My son gave me some .243 Fusion's for my B'day so it looks like I'll be using the premium stuff this year.

September 22, 2009, 09:52 PM
In factory rifle ammo I tend to gravitate toward Remington Corelokt. 2 reasons. Inexpensive, and it works. I've never lost a deer to a Corelokt bullet. It also tends to be fairly accurate from my guns. What's not to like??

In buckshot I tend to buy the premium flight control stuff, only because I've seen the difference in patterning. I also only buy it when I can find a good sale and I stock up.

In slugs, I buy Brenneke and Federal Tru-ball and they both tend to be fairly cheap.

September 23, 2009, 02:34 PM
I reload using Hornady 150gr SP. They have worked fine both for hunting and targets. I've also used 150 and 180gr corelokt on deer and elk.

If an inexpensive bullet doesn't do the job, then shoot again.

September 23, 2009, 03:02 PM

For me I guess it'd depend on what I was hunting.

For deer and such, just about any "hunting" type ammo will kill just fine. I've long thought that the "premium" ammo/bullet craze was crazy. Never needed them myself for shooting deer and such, although I've shot some "premium" bullets at times (I got 250 Speer Grand Slams some years back from my dad as a gift, he bought them at a great price, and they do shoot and perform good).

But, I do like a decent bullet, and I can load decent bullets for far less than a fella can buy even the cheapest factory ammo.

Last time I bought bullets, I could buy 100 "good" bullets for about $15, or I could buy 50 "premium" bullets for about $22 (Now they're more like $22 and $32 dollars or more, respectively). At those prices, I'll shoot the "good" bullets every time.


September 23, 2009, 03:51 PM
+1 for the Remington Corelokt. I get em cheap at Walmart and they do the job as well as I need them to. In fact they're about the only reason I go to Walmart. If I were hunting grizzlies I might consider some of the highend controlled expansion stuff. But for deer etc. the Corelokts make em DRT. Accurate too.

September 23, 2009, 11:06 PM
Last time I bought bullets, I could buy 100 "good" bullets for about $15, or I could buy 50 "premium" bullets for about $22 (Now they're more like $22 and $32 dollars or more, respectively). At those prices, I'll shoot the "good" bullets every time.

You are in for some sticker shock next time you look for bullets.

September 24, 2009, 05:23 PM
I haven't bought any in a long time I roll my own.The only stuff i buy now is 22 lr and the cheap stuff works.Good Luck

September 24, 2009, 10:31 PM
In factory rifle ammo I tend to gravitate toward Remington Corelokt. 2 reasons. Inexpensive, and it works. I've never lost a deer to a Corelokt bullet. It also tends to be fairly accurate from my guns. What's not to like??

What he said ^

Most of what I shoot are my own reloads, but if a factory round is going thru my .270, its a 130 grain Remmington Cor-Lokt. They aren't the newest design, and they don't have cool graphics on the box, or have some over paid magazine writer telling me how they are the greatest thing since smokeless powder........but they shoot fantastic in my gun, they are relatively inexpensive (compared to some other factory options), and they have never failed to fill my hunting tags. For me, its not worth paying premium prices for ammo when the less expensive stuff fills my needs just fine.

September 25, 2009, 04:04 AM
I shoot what works best in my rifles. Price although important these days isn't the determining factor for me. For a day at the range I look for bargain ammo, but sighting in and hunting I use the ammo that works. It's not a cheap sport to begin with so why pinch pennies in the field? Sometimes the better ammo for a given gun just happens to be reasonable. That's a bonus. Other times you have to cough up for premium fodder. I've never reloaded and haven't got the room, or inclination these days. If I had a place with a nice shop I might get into it, but I don't see that on the horizon anytime soon... if ever.