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.223 AR Whitetail Bullet

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by griff383, Oct 6, 2010.

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  1. griff383

    griff383 Member

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    I do most of my "trophy" hunting back home in MN, since Im in TX, harvesting a buck better be worth my while. For that purpose I have a .308 which I use. When I hunt in TX I only hunt for meat (my wife loves it), which means I mostly hunt to help manage friends land which means doe only. I like to take my AR because its lighter and we walk 250 - 1000 acre ranches so comfort and capacity play a role. Also you never know what small critter you may come across.

    So, here is my question... Does anyone have a load (bullet / powder) that they have used successfully with small to medium sized whitetail? Most shots would be less than 100 yards but some have been presented at 300-350. I reload and have all the necesary components to include plenty of CCI SR primers. I am willing to buy a new powder and bullets specifically for this purpose so I am open to any suggestion.

    AR specs- 16" heavy barrel, 1:9 twist
     
  2. snuffy

    snuffy Member

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    I carried my bushy AR once on a deer hunt. I loaded the Nosler 60 grain partition. It's the only one I would use.

    Wisconsin whitetails can get pretty big, so I wanted to be sure of penetration and expansion. IIRC I used varget powder, can't remember what charge weight.
     
  3. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Member

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    I killed a smallish buck last season using my retro ar shooting the sierra 55g gameking sp

    Even at very close range penetration was more than adequate
     
  4. millertyme

    millertyme Member

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    Caliber restriction here in Kansas
     
  5. Mule

    Mule Member

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    We have used the Nosler 60gr Partition and the Winchester 64gr Power Point with no complaints. This year we will try the Sierra 65gr Game King.
     
  6. cougar1717

    cougar1717 Member

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    The 65gr. Sierra Game King would also be an option.
     
  7. griff383

    griff383 Member

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    Ive got a great load with a 55gr HP dogtown but was thinking that a heavier bullet would be more effective for this application. Also Ive had problems in the past with breaking tips on bullets in more than one AR platform so Im kind of leary using a tipped bullet in this particular application. Of course the only time the tips break is when you really dont need them to, like last season when I saw a doe 15 yards from where I was parked. I snuck outside quick and loaded a magazine, put the crosshairs on her, and click..... nothing. By the time I cleared and had one ready to go she was full sprint 75 yards away and headed towards the neighbors house. I think that was a Hornady 55gr SP but it could have been a Win, both were factory.
     
  8. acoop101

    acoop101 Member

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    I have had good luck using the barns solid copper bullets in 223 for deer. The bullet hold together well.
     
  9. Txhillbilly

    Txhillbilly Member

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    65gr Sierra Gameking and 70gr Speer Soft Point will work just fine.
     
  10. Joker7940

    Joker7940 Member

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    I have taken a muley with my AR, I used 55 gr soft points. Reminton I think. It took 5 shots to bring him down though. :( Muleys are a little heavier than the White tails though. I would strongly suggest looking at the hornardy 75 grain hp. They are very very accurate and carry more weight than the 55 or ~60 grain bullets.
     
  11. Clifford

    Clifford Member

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    55 grain Speer SP over 26.5 grains of varget. Usually I find the bullet just under the skin of the opposite side of the whitetail. I've used 55 grain Hornady SP with the same charge of varget with similar results.

    The load was for close range (80 yards max) out of my 24" barreled Remington 788. I could have loaded hotter, but the bullets had a bad habit of fragmenting if shots were taken at really close range (25-30 yards).
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2010
  12. MrOldLude

    MrOldLude Member

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    ORLY?
     
  13. snuffy

    snuffy Member

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    Anybody loading run-of-the-mill 55 sp bullets for deer, is asking for trouble. Under IDEAL conditions, it works, but if it hits a rib on the way in, you'll have it blow up and fail to penetrate far enough to kill. To say nothing of expecting it to go through shoulder bone.

    The nosler 60 partition is the bare minimum I would use. Others like the 64 power point, 65 game king, have thicker jackets that will avoid fragmenting or at least limit it.

    The 75 Hornady is a match bullet, hollow point and thin jacket. It's worse than the 55 sp, AND the 1-9 twist may not stabilize it, mine won't.

    We owe the game we hunt a swift, sure kill, NOT a lingering chase of following blood trails. Or the horror of loosing the animal you hit.
     
  14. NCsmitty

    NCsmitty Member

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    Absolutely, it's the code that good hunters carry with themselves, but there will be some who will go out tomorrow and buy 223 varmint ammo to shoot at deer or whatever anyway.



    NCsmitty
     
  15. essayons21

    essayons21 Member

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    Caliber restriction in VA :(

    Members of a Native American tribe can harvest deer with a .22lr but the rest of us can't use anything smaller than .224.

    I don't see any reason why a properly loaded .223 is any less lethal than archery or low velocity black powder.
     
  16. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Member

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    Lumping all 55 g bullets into a common category only shows an ignorance if the importance of proper bullet construction

    Note the broken ribs after this 55 sp punched through the shoulder
    01eccca8.jpg

    Not shown are the ribs broken as the bullet exited the chest cavity.

    So much for "if you hit a rib"
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2010
  17. THe Dove

    THe Dove BOOMER SOONER!!!

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    Amen Essay!!!

    The Dove
     
  18. griff383

    griff383 Member

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    Do you think the Barnes triple shock 62gr would be effective? Supposedly it petals real nice and retains almost all of its weight upon impact.
     
  19. snuffy

    snuffy Member

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    So YOU got away with it. what bullet? And how does it's construction differ from every other cup & core 55 sp?

    Wouldn't it be a much better idea to use "enough bullet"?
     
  20. jerkface11

    jerkface11 Member

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    What counts as "enough bullet"? 180gr .30 cal? 220gr .338? 85gr .243?
     
  21. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Member

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    55g Sierra gameking from a 1/12" bbl at an impact velocity of well over 3000fps

    It's not how much the bullet weighs but rather how it's put together

    Varmint bullets have very thin jackets sourrounding a dead soft lead core and are designed for total disruption on impact. Such projectiles would include the Sierra varminter, or the hornady super explosive spire point.

    Hunting bullets have much thicker jackets that delay expansion and increase penetration. Such bullets would include the Sierra gameking sp or the Winchester power point.

    These differences vastly change the projectiles terminal ballistics and it's up to the shooter to do the research and select a suitably constructed projectile. Just arbitrarily deciding that a bullet must weigh XX is not gonna garentee you're using the right projectile.

    They may be not be written about in the gun rags but a good cup and core bullet of suitable construction will still get the job done on Bambi without resorting to $45 a box of 50 premium bullets.
     
  22. snuffy

    snuffy Member

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    Now that's a different story. In a 1-12 twist, that's about the heaviest you could go. I wasn't aware of the 55 sierra GAMEking. Yes, I agree if the jacket is heavier, it should work.

    I once recovered a 55 Winchester sp that hat hit a water filled gallon milk jug, passed through and lodged in a second one. It just BARELY made it into the second one. Prettiest classic mushroom I ever saw, weighed 35 grains. Deer aren't made of water filled plastic, but I doubt that bullet would have looked so pretty IF it had hit bone before entering the plastic. Fired from my AR 1-9 @ 50 yds.

    If I didn't already have the 60 noslers loaded, I would go with the 64 power point or 65 gameking. If for no other reason than to save some bucks.
     
  23. rjrivero

    rjrivero Member

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    Yes. I think that would be quite effective with the right shot placement. My daughter took a 250 lb Russain sow with a .223 pushing a 60gr Nosler Partition last January. I have been impressed with the Barnes Bullets and will be using them on our next hunt.
     
  24. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Member

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    Shooting a high velocity rifle bullet into water is one of the most destructive things you can do to one. Even the mighty 50bmg bullets will break up within a few inches.

    Look up the mythbusters episode " bullets water"
     
  25. DANNY-L

    DANNY-L Member

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    Myself and others I know have taken plenty of deer rangeing from 50yds-300yds with the 55gr sp the most any of them went was maybe 75 yds,most of them dropped where they stood. They were mostly rib shots (but we tried to miss the rib bone,ya right) some were shoulder, not one deer ever lost with the 223.
     
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