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Game Kings, SSTs, or Ballistic Tips.

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Kachok, Dec 5, 2012.

  1. Kachok

    Kachok Well-Known Member

    I have been loading all three for a while now, I usualy use whichever shoots the best in a given rifle, but one rifle groups as good as I can shoot it with all three so my normal practice does not apply. If whitetail deer and smallish feral hogs were your only game which would be your prefrence? The Game Kings and SSTs are 140gr (2750fps) and the Ballistic Tips are 120s (just over 3,000fps) range from 30-300yd.
  2. Nico Testosteros

    Nico Testosteros Well-Known Member

    I guess I'd have to flip a coin. If all 3 shoot equally well I don't think theres much difference between the three. I don't think the deer or hogs will know the diff.
  3. Kachok

    Kachok Well-Known Member

    Anyone got a three sided coin? LOL I have used the 120 BTs on game before at 100fps lower speed with impressive borderline nasty results, but I think these will have the least penetration (not that that has been an issue yet) The Game Kings I think will have the most penetration given that they are 140gr and don't have the uber fast expanding tip, as an added bonus they are also the cheapest to shoot at $0.27 a pop not that I would compromise on game performance for a few pennies. The SSTs have a reputation for nasty fast expansion and the highest BC of them all (.458 vs .495 vs .520) I have shot hundreds of them but have never used one on game, though I have loaded them for friends before in other calibers and have yet to have a complaint about having to track anything.
  4. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    I started using Sierras way, way back when. Since they always worked as I expected and hoped, I've never bothered with anything else. 20 yards to 450 yards, bang/whop/plop.
  5. flipajig

    flipajig Well-Known Member

    Sierras or a rem corloc for me they have been getting it done for a long time and will continue to do so. A BT at high valocity and close range very explocive 300 yds different story.
  6. Kachok

    Kachok Well-Known Member

    I load Serria Game Kings in every rifle caliber I handload for. They are generally the most accurate bullets I have ever seen, and in my 30-06 they will make a mess of a deer if you don't keep it behind the shoulder. The soft tissue damage is impressive to say the least, the last one had a hole large enough to put your fist through. Some have said that they are too soft for deer hunting and core/jacket separation is a major issue, but that has not been my experience with the 165gr 30 cal version (2830fps). I hope the 140gr 6.5mm is every bit as good. I like big exit wounds, so if I ever have to track something a good blood trail will lead the way. Never lost an animal yet and hopefully never will.
  7. Kachok

    Kachok Well-Known Member

    I used to think so too, but I tried them a while back and I have had nothing but through and through shots even at close ranged 270 WSM speeds! (3300fps) Raking shot an a deer at 80 yd went in 10" behind the shoulder and went out the neck, dropped on the spot probably 28" total penetration. I try Noslers in all my rifles too, some group well with them some don't, my 270 WSM and 308 favor them in 130 and 168gr.
    Too many good bullets on the market nowadays, makes choices really hard on OCD people like me :)
  8. Lloyd Smale

    Lloyd Smale Well-Known Member

    Ive used both bts and sierras for about 90 percent of my deer shooting for over 30 years. Both work real well and for me anyway id let the gun decide.
  9. Grumulkin

    Grumulkin Well-Known Member

    I also generally use what shoots best for me in a particular gun. Of the bullets you mention, I'd go with the Sierra GameKing.

    A bullet that's I think is a real sleeper is the Remington Core-Lokt. For such cheap and a little ugly bullets they shoot VERY well for me in a 270 Winchester and give excellent performance on deer, crows and groundhogs.
  10. Kachok

    Kachok Well-Known Member

    No Core-Lokts around here except 180gr 30 cal and 100gr .257" I have thought many times about ordering from Midway but they are always out of stock when I am ready to order. Been thinking of trying the new Speer Deep Curl, bonded bullet performance at interlock prices. Not that I need that much for deer, but I like the value in that.
  11. squarepants33889

    squarepants33889 Well-Known Member

    I'd have to go the LGS to check for sure, but I think the SST's were the cheapest of bunch per bullet for my .270. I really like Nosler bullets, but they were at least a third more money and didn't perform any better than the SST's.
    The only Gamekings I have shot were 140's, and my rifle loves em. That's what got me interested in the 140 Partitions I loaded for this deer season. Truth be told, the one shot I took at a deer this year was a pass thru neck shot that probably didn't require a premium bonded bullet.
    One of my hunting partners exclusively loads SST's in his 7mm-08 and swears by them on all shots out to 300 yards.
    I'm not sure I will continue to load partitions once I run out of the 40 or so I have left.
    The 130gr SST's are a flat shooting, economical round out of my .270.
    The longer I write this, the more I keep changing my mind.
    Good luck with whatever you choose.
  12. adelbridge

    adelbridge Well-Known Member

    ballistic tips absolutely grenade animals. I use them for added insurance and they have paid off but they also cost me a shoulder and back strap in the last week.
  13. Kachok

    Kachok Well-Known Member

    Yeah I know, I try really hard to keep any tipped bullet behind the shoulder if possible.
  14. MCgunner

    MCgunner Well-Known Member


    They all work fine. I don't use SSTs, but Game Kings and Ballistic Tips have never failed me. The 150 .30 caliber BT at 2800 fps has WAY more penetration than the BT haters will give it credit. I've shot one animal from butt to neck, full length of his body, and didn't recover the bullet. He was a bang/flop. Lost a little of the ham, not much. A 7mm 150 Game King exploded on a doe's shoulders, all of the off side and most of the on side, at 50 yards driven at 3200 fps MV. It happens. Just chili meat and I got a nice buck that same hunt, so I wasn't wanting for chili meat. :D
  15. WYOMan

    WYOMan Well-Known Member

    I've used all of them in my swede. I now use the 140 SST's because the BC is almost identicle to 140 SMK's so I can use the same load and range card for both. I only run mine at 2513 fps. so I'm not concerned with them "grenading", as some like to say. I think the tipped bullets got a baad rap because hunters were over gunned for close shots. The last deer I shot with a 120 Gameking was maybe 40-50 yards away. The bullet entered behind the shoulder and completely exploded inside the rib cage. I never found any of it. I literally poured his heart and lungs out whenI dressed him out. I did not view this as a bullet failure. The buck was down. By the way hello from a fellow 6.5X55 disciple.
  16. Kachok

    Kachok Well-Known Member

    They got a bad rap from the early Ballistics Tips that really were not much more then an over sized varmint bullet. They changed the design back in 1998 but now there are still enough people pushing them to ultra magnum speeds to keep the bullet blowup hype alive. I keep them below 3050fps in everything buy my long ranged gun and have never had any issues with their perpetration. I am sure I won't have any issues with the SST either seeing as it is even slower and heavier then the Nosler.
    Loaded up a box worth of each, whichever one puts um down the fastest will be my go to round. Now time to fine tune my 308 :)
  17. Patocazador

    Patocazador Well-Known Member

    I'm one who doesn't like Ballistic tips for hunting critters that I want to eat afterwards. As you said, the originals were all varmint bullets but even the 2nd gen. ones blow up animals if you are too close. Trouble is you can't have it both ways unless you shoot Nosler Partitions which always perform regardless of the distances.

    I shot a 180 lb. 8 point with a .338-06 with a 200 gr. Ballistic Tip and his entire chest cavity "exploded" and sent pieces of ribs, heart, and lungs throughout the surrounding muscle. Very little of that deer was salvageable.
  18. jmr40

    jmr40 Well-Known Member

    Older ballistic tips earned a reputation for too much expansion and too little penetraton. Nosler addressed that issue and they are a tougher bullet now than they were a few years ago. I put a 150 gr BT from a 30-06 @ around 3000 fps completely through a 260 lb bear a few years ago. Range was around 60 yards so it was moving pretty fast. Left a 2" exit hole and dropped him in his tracks.

    I haven't shot anything with either of the others, but have used them at the range. I'd say the Game Kings are the tougher bullet that will probably give the greatest penetration, with the SST's the fastest expanding and the BT's in the middle. Nothing at all wrong with any of them as long as you understand how they work and how to use them.
  19. Kachok

    Kachok Well-Known Member

    With any cup and core bullet I am inclined to think that they should be kept under 3k fps impact speeds. Anything faster then that like my WSM I will be loading with Partition/TSX/Accubond bullets. I so no reason why any of those would fail to expand or sepereate at 2,000-3,000fps impact speeds. I will say though that Ballistic tips are known to be caliber sensative, some seem to be more fragile then others. 7mm for example.
  20. Duane M

    Duane M Member

    I have had a lot of success with both the ballistic tips and the Sierra Game kings. The last eight deer I shot were with the Game Kings 165 grain 30/06. What I like about them is they don't run away. It has been bang flop with them. I've had deer run a hundred yards with the ballistic tips. The chest would be mush but they still ran. Usually no exit wound. I never lost a deer with them but it seems the game kings work a little better for me.

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