Best 7.62x39 load for Bear


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Gunnerboy
June 8, 2012, 10:08 AM
Alright so my bear season is coming up... 60 days to be exact. so im needing some recommendations on the best ammo out there for shooting black bear in 7.62x39. None of this nonsense of pick another caliber or some silly stuff like that, For im set in my ways of using my sks for the wide variety of critters that i can come upon on my hunting trip.

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fatcat4620
June 8, 2012, 10:24 AM
I see brown bear, silver bear, and golden bear but I dont see black bear anywhere:) I would think some good old fmj would work best since penetration would be a concern.

Moose458
June 8, 2012, 10:52 AM
The bear hunters in Russia, just use military ammo, in thier sks's and seems to do the trick.

drsfmd
June 8, 2012, 11:07 AM
This is not a good idea at all... The milspec ammo has very little expansion, and the HP ammo just fragments. If you are going to insist on doing this, at least invest in a box of Winchester Super X. http://www.natchezss.com/product.cfm?contentID=productDetail&prodID=WNX76239

Robert
June 8, 2012, 11:08 AM
A good soft point or expanding bullet should work just fine on a black bear.

Art Eatman
June 8, 2012, 11:20 AM
"A good soft point or expanding bullet should work just fine on a black bear."

Yup. Don't be overly-optimistic about the distance for an effective shot, and be ready for any needed follow-up.

Gunnerboy
June 8, 2012, 11:20 AM
drsfmd, thats what i was thinking, ive seen how badly the fmjs, and HPs fragment and wasnt exactly too... faithful in them. Can you speak for how well the winchester ammo works in 7.62x39? because ive had nothing but bad results from winchester ammunition. And ART i tend to be within 50yds on bear where i hunt them.

Asherdan
June 8, 2012, 12:13 PM
Federal, Remington and Winchester all have softpoints, check the link to Natchez in post #4, they're all listed. I'd see which shoots best for you in your rifle and go hunt Yogi.

dprice3844444
June 8, 2012, 12:14 PM
The CorBon DPX

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lmu7yTVidig

http://www.shopcorbon.com/CORBON-Hunter/762x39-150gr-CORBON-Hunter-JSP/HT762X39150-20/300/Product

steveo452
June 8, 2012, 12:53 PM
S&B 123gr. sp would work great.

Texan Scott
June 8, 2012, 02:29 PM
FMJ will kill as well as you shoot... but may not incapacitate quickly, which is bad if you p!ss it off or scare it into charging... and also unneccessarily inhumane.

My personal thought is, if you didn't trust a JSP to penetrate adequately, you wouldn't need a FMJ... you'd need a heavier caliber. That said, since black bear can be taken with a .30-30, I would think a heavy (150-grainish) soft point 7.62x39 would do fine. I personally would not hunt them by choice (because I wouldn't EAT them by choice, and it's illegal in TX in any event), but some people in other places do, clearly.

drsfmd
June 8, 2012, 02:48 PM
drsfmd, thats what i was thinking, ive seen how badly the fmjs, and HPs fragment and wasnt exactly too... faithful in them. Can you speak for how well the winchester ammo works in 7.62x39? because ive had nothing but bad results from winchester ammunition. And ART i tend to be within 50yds on bear where i hunt them.

It's not a caliber I hunt critters with (you asked that you not get feedback on that particular point, so I refrained), but the bullet design itself is a good one. There are probably some more accurate options out there, but at the distances you're talking about you want expansion over super accuracy, right?

MCgunner
June 8, 2012, 06:07 PM
For cheap, non-handload, I'll always default to Russian made 154 SP, Tula or Wolf. It's pretty danged good huntin' ammo and should work just fine on black bear and in MY SKS, it shoots about 2.5" at 100 yards, a little more accurate than the 123 grain stuff.

http://www.ammunitiontogo.com/product_info.php/pName/100rds-762x39-tula-154gr-soft-point-ammo/cName/762x39-soft-point-ammo

caribou
June 8, 2012, 06:20 PM
Go with whatever ammo is accurate, and legal.


No matter what bullet you use, all bullets must be shot through a vital organ or destroy the Central Nervous system.

WardenWolf
June 8, 2012, 08:37 PM
There's some really nasty PRVI Partizan roundnose softpoints. They look like a .30-30 round. I guarantee you, those things will do some damage. PRVI Partizan ammo is also good-quality and very accurate.

This nasty stuff: http://www.the-armory.com/shopsite_sc/store/html/product1753.html

Sky
June 8, 2012, 08:52 PM
Tula has a 154gr SP I use on pigs. Great round out to 125 yards. Hard hitting and heavy recoil...ooops sorry just saw your post!

For cheap, non-handload, I'll always default to Russian made 154 SP, Tula or Wolf. It's pretty danged good huntin' ammo and should work just fine on black bear and in MY SKS, it shoots about 2.5" at 100 yards, a little more accurate than the 123 grain stuff.

http://www.ammunitiontogo.com/produc...oft-point-ammo

TexasPatriot.308
June 8, 2012, 10:48 PM
7.62 x 39 for bear? dont forget your bayonet, you may need it.

MCgunner
June 8, 2012, 11:20 PM
It'll kill anything a .30-30 will kill and .30-30 has probably killed more bear than any other sporting caliber.

mattmann
June 8, 2012, 11:25 PM
It'll kill anything a .30-30 will kill and .30-30 has probably killed more bear than any other sporting caliber.

Amen brother!! :thumbup:

Sent from my DROID RAZR

JShirley
June 9, 2012, 02:21 AM
At close range, a heavy soft-point 7.62x39mm should be fine for black bear, until you get up to the Alaskan giants.

Folks, if someone asks a question, and you don't know the answer, "guessing in an authoritative manner" is probably not real helpful. And it makes you look stupid. The way large-caliber handguns kill is very different than the wounding mechanism of modern rifles. Larger caliber handguns rely on the same dynamics as the old, slow, non-expanding black powder muskets, throwing a heavy large-bore projectile at relatively slow velocity.

Put another way, expansion is less important in a .43 or larger caliber than a .309 one.

John

andrewstorm
June 9, 2012, 11:00 AM
because of slam fire,Winchester ammo is soft primed and can go off on closing the action or dropping the sks ,Steele primers are safer or install a after market firing pin, but mil spec ammo will work,as it does for african game wardens.

MCgunner
June 9, 2012, 01:48 PM
I've handloaded mine and NEVER had a slam fire. Theoretically it could happen, but I've yet to see it, ever. Problem is the SKS doesn't have a firing pin spring, just floats.

I really like the Wolf and Tula 154 SP, though, so cheap I don't have to bother with handloading the caliber and since it's steel cased and berdan primed, I don't have to chase brass.:D It's some good stuff and the SKS eats the steel case stuff all day long.

blarby
June 9, 2012, 01:56 PM
@wardenwolf and OP : Those PRVI Softpoints do indeed look fairly nasty. Very similar to .30-30 indeed. If I was gonna go after some thin skinned angry yogi, I'd prolly vote for that.

Whatever you lose in speed, you will more than make up for in smooshy, pushy wound cavity. I did not know those existed........ (outside of a handroll)

T.R.
June 9, 2012, 02:04 PM
Winchester Power Point ammo makes big holes through deer so it should be a good killer for bears as well. That speedy and lethal 123 grain bullet will not bounce off despite what the critics might think.

Good hunting to you.

TR

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/rushmoreman/bear.jpg

GJgo
June 10, 2012, 12:19 AM
Barnes TSX have a habit of making a marginal caliber for big game into a good one, if it were me I'd load up their .310" (http://www.midwayusa.com/product/170874/barnes-triple-shock-x-bullets-762x39mm-310-diameter-123-grain-hollow-point-boat-tail-lead-free-box-of-50) offering & go a huntin'.

Lloyd Smale
June 10, 2012, 08:18 AM
thing is to claim its good for bear is a pretty broad statement. Most bear around here go 200 or even a bit less. A 3030 or 762x39 loaded with a good bullet like a power point will kill them dead as hell. But theres allways the chance your going to run up against a 500lb bear and if a big one like that came strolling in 20 yards from me id want a bit more gun. Im sure the little 30 would get it done but youd best be placing that bullet with the skill of a surgeon. I dont claim to be an expert on the 762x39. Ive killed two deer one pig and one bear with it and it did well but i knew its limits and stayed within them. Ive killed a truck load of deer and quite a few bear with the 3030 and if you really want to hear my opinion it smacks things harder then the 762x39 and id rather be out there with a 3030 loaded with 170 corelocks then any 762x39 load you can dream up when that 500 lb bear shows up.

j1
June 10, 2012, 08:51 AM
Guys please do not forget that with a semi auto there are lots of shots available. It is not like a single shot rifle.

MCgunner
June 10, 2012, 03:54 PM
Everyone wants a one shot kill. I really don't think the SKS is lacking there for back bear of ANY size. They ain't bullet proof, not even arrow proof. Sure, it'll take a good bullet, or a sharp broadhead.

brnmuenchow
June 11, 2012, 11:31 AM
Wolf 154 gr. SP's will work just fine.

Dthunter
June 12, 2012, 02:19 PM
I guided my sister in law to a nice boar this spring.
She shot it with a Ruger M77, in 7.62x39.
I loaded a .308", 150grain Sierra spire point with H335 powder.
She shot the bear at about 125-150 yards.
One shot, the bear ran 30 yards, done.
More than adequate caliber.

StrawHat
June 12, 2012, 03:28 PM
I see some have mentioned using FMJ or military surplus ammo. In area I have hunted, FMJs is not legal. Make sure it is acceptable where you hunt.

Alaska444
June 13, 2012, 06:22 PM
June 8, 2012, 07:48 PM #17
TexasPatriot.308
Member

Join Date: July 9, 2009
Location: Luling Texas
Posts: 1,285

7.62 x 39 for bear? dont forget your bayonet, you may need it.


+1, black bears can reach nearly 900 pounds in the wild although obviously quite rare here in the lower 48. Get the right gun with adequate penetration for bear. Can it kill a bear, of course, but remember that bear hunting can quickly turn into bear defense. I would pass on the 7.62X39 mm unless of course you add the bayonet.:neener:

MCgunner
June 13, 2012, 06:43 PM
The world record weight for an American black bear is 880 pounds, shot in North Carolina. I would dare to say the average is probably 500 lbs shy of that.

http://www.americanbear.org/Size.htm

Texan Scott
June 13, 2012, 06:51 PM
MCgunner, once again, you're cluttering up some very valid opinions with informed, factual posts.... :p

Gunnerboy
June 13, 2012, 06:59 PM
the average bear in my hunting area is 200ish the biggest i know of was pushing 350, and yes i will have a bayonet :neener: and a 1911 :D

WardenWolf
June 14, 2012, 03:24 AM
I picked up 100 rounds of those PRVI Partizan soft points a while back. Haven't shot them yet, but they truly are evil-looking rounds. The 7.62x39 round is often referred to as the "ballistic twin" of .30-30. However, the 7.62x39 starts out a little more powerful and maintains its velocity better because of its Spitzer bullet type. The .30-30 normally has a lot more wounding potential, though, because its round nose. These PRVI Partizan rounds are the best of both worlds. I've read they feed fine in most AK's and SKS's, too.

MCgunner
June 14, 2012, 06:27 PM
Well, there ain't no bear in south or most of west Texas where I've hunted and they're illegal to shoot where they are, so most I take on with an SKS is the occasional hog. I just think of it as a .30-30 autoloader. :D .30-30 has taken about everything on the north American continent including brown bear, though I think there are better choices for something THAT big. :D All in where you put the bullet, though.

Lloyd Smale
June 16, 2012, 06:31 AM
havent killed a bear with one but have killed a few deer and pigs. Mostly ive used the 123 vmax. I know its not suppose to be a game bullet but its performed well for me. My thoughts on bear hunting are that for most situations its plenty of gun but occasionaly your going to run into a big bear. A black bear that weights 400 lbs is a differnt critter alltogether then one that weights 200 and id want a bit more gun when that big one comes wandering in.

Pete D.
June 16, 2012, 07:08 AM
The 7.62x39 round is often referred to as the "ballistic twin" of .30-30. However, the 7.62x39 starts out a little more powerful and maintains its velocity better because of its Spitzer bullet type.
And like a lot of "often referred to" references, it is not true. I don't mean to be offensive but where did you find load data that shows the little Russian cartridge starting off with more power with any bullet than the .30-30. I just looked in five reloading manuals (Lyman, Sierra, Hodgdon, Speer, Hornady) and not one shows a load the 7.62X39 that starts off more powerfully than the .30-30.
One set of loads, in Sierra, does show 150 grain boattails at similar velocities to the .30-30s RNs so there may be some truth to enhanced downrange performance when those bullets are used.
using the standard 123/125 grain bullet, the Russian case maxes out - in any load data that I have seen - at about 2400fps. the .30-30 will shoot that weight bullet at 2600 fps.
The bigger advantage of the .30-30 is that it can throw heavier bullets more effectively than the Russian case. using 150 grain bullets, the .30-30 is 200 fps faster with any propellant (except in the Sierra data, an interesting anomaly).

MCgunner
June 16, 2012, 03:52 PM
So, what's a couple hundred FPS? I still consider the SKS a semi auto .30-30, okay, slightly downloaded. I've shot 150 grain .30-30 factory stuff from a 20" barrel that didn't clock more'n 2100 fps over MY chronograph. I used to load Sierra 150 spitzers to 2400 fps for my Savage M340, but I no longer have that rifle. But, I never fired a factory .30-30 that would run a full 2400 fps. Probably is because I never bought any ammo for the gun that was more expensive than what I could get Winchester for at Walmart. Hell, I mostly just wanted the brass.

If I want more, I have a .308 and a 7mm Remington Magnum in MY gun cabinet. The only .30-30 I now own has a 12" barrel, a Contender. It's taken five deer out to 90 yards. I'd shoot a bear with it, probably use the Barnes 140, though. I handload it with a 150 Nosler BT for deer to 2150 fps and it hits 2200 with the Barnes bullet.

Alaska444
June 16, 2012, 07:36 PM
Hunting bear and bear defense are two different things. Most folks do not feel comfortable with a 30 30 as a bear defense gun although it certainly has worked in many cases.

Not my cup of tea. Go big and and slow or fast and small, but a lot faster than the gun in question. 30-06 with minimum 180 gr. is where most folks start.

Lastly, some states have strict regulations on bear guns and I seriously doubt the 7.62 x 39 is going to be on any of those lists.

Gunnerboy
June 19, 2012, 12:35 PM
Thank you all for your responses.

janobles14
June 19, 2012, 11:25 PM
ill say it again! silver bear soft points! cheapish and actually expand fairly well. the DRT deer have zero complaints.

303tom
June 21, 2012, 11:13 PM
Alright so my bear season is coming up... 60 days to be exact. so im needing some recommendations on the best ammo out there for shooting black bear in 7.62x39. None of this nonsense of pick another caliber or some silly stuff like that, For im set in my ways of using my sks for the wide variety of critters that i can come upon on my hunting trip.
OK, I won`t there just ain`t no good ammo for 7.62x39 for bear !!!!!!!!!!!!!

Kachok
June 22, 2012, 12:17 AM
I kinna have to agree with Tom, there is no 7.62x39 load that I would want to use on bear black or otherwise. Sure a heavy soft point could do the trick but it is a marginal choice at best for game larger then whitetail. And no the 7.62x39 does not outperform the 30-30, by all acounts the 30-30 wins out by about 100+fps and is available with quality 170gr soft point bullets that give it a large real world advantage on larger game. If you honestly think a 154gr silverbear will perform like a 170gr Partition you really need to go back to terminal ballistics school. The 7.62x39 is a solid choice for game up to large deer, but I personaly would not push it any further then that. Lackluster penatration is your limiting factor not the diamiter of the wound tract.
BTW 154gr Silverbear SPs loose their jacket on expansion, I have seen them tested in ballistics gel a few times, this further reduces penetration on top of the already marginal SD.

Alaska444
June 22, 2012, 01:10 AM
I kinna have to agree with Tom, there is no 7.62x39 load that I would want to use on bear black or otherwise. Sure a heavy soft point could do the trick but it is a marginal choice at best for game larger then whitetail. And no the 7.62x39 does not outperform the 30-30, by all acounts the 30-30 wins out by about 100+fps and is available with quality 170gr soft point bullets that give it a large real world advantage on larger game. If you honestly think a 154gr silverbear will perform like a 170gr Partition you really need to go back to terminal ballistics school. The 7.62x39 is a solid choice for game up to large deer, but I personaly would not push it any further then that. Lackluster penatration is your limiting factor not the diamiter of the wound tract.
BTW 154gr Silverbear SPs loose their jacket on expansion, I have seen them tested in ballistics gel a few times, this further reduces penetration on top of the already marginal SD.
+1, well said.

Texan Scott
June 22, 2012, 02:36 AM
Said before by wiser men than myself: Never deliberately corner anything you know is meaner than you.

AND:

http://www.despair.com/overconfidence.html

Stay safe.

303tom
June 22, 2012, 10:40 AM
I kinna have to agree with Tom, there is no 7.62x39 load that I would want to use on bear black or otherwise. Sure a heavy soft point could do the trick but it is a marginal choice at best for game larger then whitetail. And no the 7.62x39 does not outperform the 30-30, by all acounts the 30-30 wins out by about 100+fps and is available with quality 170gr soft point bullets that give it a large real world advantage on larger game. If you honestly think a 154gr silverbear will perform like a 170gr Partition you really need to go back to terminal ballistics school. The 7.62x39 is a solid choice for game up to large deer, but I personaly would not push it any further then that. Lackluster penatration is your limiting factor not the diamiter of the wound tract.
BTW 154gr Silverbear SPs loose their jacket on expansion, I have seen them tested in ballistics gel a few times, this further reduces penetration on top of the already marginal SD.
I have to agree with Kachok, & the 7.62x39 barely out does the 7.92 Kurz let alone the 7.62x51R, I load .30-30 to capacity with LVR & a Sierra 150gr. HPBT, they are pushing 2700 fps on the chrono for use in my Handi-rifle, but don`t know if I would shoot a bear with it, maybe a SMALL black bear..........

Art Eatman
June 22, 2012, 11:26 AM
Looks to me as though the efficacy of the cartridge would depend on the method of the hunt. For instance, most Florida hunters I've read of or talked to have hunted from a tree stand, and the shots were pretty close. Easy enough for precision as to shot placement.

I dunno. You go with what you got, and the main deal is don't be stoopid. It's no sin to pass on a difficult shot.

Gunnerboy
June 22, 2012, 12:01 PM
Most of the time i see bear where im at is either 200+ yds or less than 30yds and for all those who are worrying about the effectiveness of 7.62x39, I am not taking any shot that is over 50yds mainly because I got a 12 day vacation to hunt them so why take a risk at a poor shot, besides its fun to try and sneak up on them critters :D

MCgunner
June 22, 2012, 07:03 PM
I load .30-30 to capacity with LVR & a Sierra 150gr. HPBT, they are pushing 2700 fps on the chrono

THAT HAS to be WAY over SAAMI! Best to move up to .308. I get about 2750 SAFE FPS in my 20" M7 Remington with a 150 Nosler. You have to be pushing 50,000 CUP with your load in that thin .30-30 case with that big old rimmed case head. Better you than me. Hope you got good medical...and life insurance for that matter. :rolleyes:

MCgunner
June 22, 2012, 07:18 PM
Well, just thinkin', if you have a 30" barrel or something, 2700 might be attainable with a .30-30 and max SAAMI pressure.....maybe. Didn't think about barrel length as most .30-30s are 20" guns. Never looked at the handi-rifles, though.

Texan Scott
June 22, 2012, 07:54 PM
most Florida hunters I've read of or talked to have hunted from a tree stand

Yes... if you're going to hunt bears, being in the tree already is smart.

303tom
June 22, 2012, 09:34 PM
THAT HAS to be WAY over SAAMI! Best to move up to .308. I get about 2750 SAFE FPS in my 20" M7 Remington with a 150 Nosler. You have to be pushing 50,000 CUP with your load in that thin .30-30 case with that big old rimmed case head. Better you than me. Hope you got good medical...and life insurance for that matter. :rolleyes:
No, No, No, case cap. of the .30-30 with LVR is 39.5 grs. & a 22in. barrel & your talking right at 35,000 cup, & I said (PUSHING) 2,700 fps..............

Alaska444
June 22, 2012, 11:06 PM
Yes... if you're going to hunt bears, being in the tree already is smart.
Black bears climb trees better than squirrels gathering nuts. Bears gather nuts shooting 7.62x39 ammo. Good luck.:what::eek:

Kachok
June 23, 2012, 01:18 AM
I don't mean to be overly critical of anyone's choice in cartrage/rifle, but bear are no wimps and quick clean kills are by far the best, and safest kind. My long standing policy on big claws, teeth, tusks or horns is the largest caliber, heaviest bullet I can place with a high level of precision. If someone is a recoil wimp that may be a 30-30, 7mm-08, or 6.5x55 any one of which is a much better choice then any 7.62x39 bullet you can find. A good ol 30-06 with a quality 180gr bullet would be even better if you can shoot it well. If you cannot afford a hunting rifle try borrowing one for bear season.

Art Eatman
June 23, 2012, 08:11 AM
Plenty of food for thought for the OP.

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