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Big and Slow vs Small and Fast

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by ExAgoradzo, Feb 15, 2014.

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  1. jgh4445

    jgh4445 Member

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    What was a decent African load in 1875?
     
  2. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Let me guess, you're a .45ACP fanatic?
     
  3. jgh4445

    jgh4445 Member

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    No, I just look at the fact that Russians and a lot of Alaskan Natives shoot almost everything with a 7.62, or a .223. I look at the idea that the 30.30 has probably killed more game than any modern caliber, I guess cause there were so many folks hunting with them. I look at the pure fact that for 300 years flintlocks ruled in war and game taking. I know that in Africa black powder killed more animals than anything cause for so long it was all that was available. I think black powder reigned for a longer period of time than smokeless has even been available. I guess the point is, until we invented sports writers and marketing, the best gun for a particular game was whatever you had in your hand at the time the game animal chose to wander into your sights. You are very right in that shot placement is the most important aspect of killing game, not caliber or speed.
     
  4. skoro

    skoro Member

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    Short answer: energy isn't the best measure for terminal performance. Momentum is better, but it's a considerably smaller number for all calibers, so it isn't favored by marketeers and thus is rarely published and readily available. It gives equal weight to mass and velocity, whereas energy gives a much greater emphasis to velocity and lessens the contribution of mass.
     
  5. ExAgoradzo

    ExAgoradzo Member

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    Skoro
    Isn't momentum another way of saying energy?

    I appreciate this idea of penetration, and I may be overthinking this one, but if I've got an SPBT hitting real fast it makes sense that even as it opens it will still 'cut' better than a chunk of lead with a giant meplat.

    Again, I'm wanting to learn here not argue...
    Greg
     
  6. d2wing

    d2wing Member

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    The momentum theory has no basis in actual science. It is another pet idea of poeple that make stuff up. It is like the penetration myth which means a bullet did not hit hard enough to expand or create shock due to drag. Try hitting water with a flat paddle hard. You can break a paddle that way. Then shove it in slowly. That is the difference. But, as jgh4445 said we are pretty much overgunned with any modern cartridge comparedj to our forebears that did more with less. Yes I actually do like the the 45 ACP. I never said the big and slow doesn't have it's place. It is great for pistols since they aren't going to be fast enough for cavitation anyway.
     
  7. Mike1234567

    Mike1234567 member

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    Penetrate to the "appropriate depth" and no/little more... cause the most damage to the unused/wasted vitals via expansion/fragmentation and hydrostatic shock during that process. It's "both" depending on the size and toughness of the game. I've no practical experience but I tend to be logical. Of course, there's leeway and error either direction but reasonable logic should be considered. IMO, an "average middle ground" should be used.
     
  8. ZeroJunk

    ZeroJunk Member

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    Momentum is no theory it is a law. If the bullet had no momentum it would fall straight to the ground when it fell out of the barrel.
     
  9. saturno_v

    saturno_v Member

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    Linear momentum alone does to mean anything in terms of a bullet capability to penetrate and destroy..energy, sectional density, bullet construction and shape plays a role.
     
  10. d2wing

    d2wing Member

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    No comment
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2014
  11. JJHACK

    JJHACK Member

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    These are always interesting conversations. Many with theories have no mathematical background to back up opinions. However that stops nobody from having an opinion!

    Muzzle Energy is a measure of energy, but not fully applicable to a bullets performance on tissue. So those using it as a reference are factually handicapped in the discussion. It was a SAAMI design to compare cartridges against each other, not on the tissue of game animals.

    A rifle that has 3000 FPE cannot move 3000lbs. It's simply a formula that puts the priority of the result in velocity, not the weight of the projectile. Velocity is squared in the formula not weight. Velocity squared times bullet weight divided by 450240

    Momentum is Mass times velocity, As an example:

    180 grain bullet ( mass), times 3000fps ( velocity) = 540,000 divided by 7000 (7000grains in a pound) = 77.1lbs of momentum or impact force.

    That means that the bullet would actually move anything lighter then 77.1 pounds upon impact. It's why 3000FPE cannot move a deer, or any living big game from impact. No shoulder fired arm can shoot a projectile that will lift a big game animal off it's feet. Those who claim so have seen an animal jump at impact but they have not seen a big game animal thrown from impact.

    So that this math riddle is cleared up for the basics. What does matter speed or diameter? Really depends upon the species. I've never seen a Cape Buffalo, rhino, hippo, elephant, bison, wild cattle, Giraffe, impressed with velocity. They do however show a significant respect for bullet weight and diameter.

    Two different things cannot occupy the same place at the same time. This is what causes so much trauma when very high velocity impacts something small or fragile. When the High Velocity bullet impacts a coyote for example. The tissue moves out of the path at nearly the speed of the projectile. The cavity will stress the surrounding tissue as it's compressed against the outer hide. Many times this hide will rupture and leave you with the exploded coyote or other small creature. As body mass increases the hide can contain the rapidly expanding tissue and hold it together. This compresses the tissue into a huge hematoma. Or what folks refer to as blood shot meat.

    On very large animals, the tissue or muscle density can contain this rapid expansion to the local region and reduce the trauma to only a small area. It's why the bigger species do not realize the same trauma from High Velocity as the smaller Species do. Its about body mass. Hence the reason for large heavy projectiles in Africa back in the day. It was recognised that deep penetration was the ticket to success. Those 500 grain and 700 grain bullets would drive deep into and often out of anything in it's path.

    Using the momentum formula for my 458 Lott

    500 x 2350= 1175000 (divided by 7000 grains in a pound) 167 pounds of momentum on the surface of a .458 diameter bullet. You can probably envision the amount of penetration this would have.


    Now there is very good news here in all of this. The decision for HV or heavy weight is coming to a very good compromise with todays monolithic projectiles. Penetration can be achieved with lighter bullets that retain all their weight and still expand.

    in the late 50's when the 300 win mag was introduced it was to be the king of all hunting cartridges on earth! Every single writer, outfitter, guide, and Professional hunter was very impressed and believed this cartridge to be the apex of ballistics engineering for the big game hunter.

    The cartridge could shoot a 180 bullet at 3100fps. This was a massive lethal combination. But lets think about this. Upon impact the bullet would go to pieces. The cup and core technology was not in step with the case capacity that provided the extreme velocity. How could any manufacturer produce a different bullet when the same one needed to be used in the 30/06 with a much lower speed. With 1000's of 30/06 rifles to every new 300 win mag, nobody was going to make their bullets just for the 300 win mag speeds! Nosler Partitions were made which helped quite a bit, but even so they still lost half the weight/ mass and were better, but not good enough to make use of the 3100fps speeds.

    Today, a 30/06 with modern rifles, modern powders and the monolithic bullets, like the TSX far exceed the lethal performance of the 300 Winchester Magnum of the 60's.

    The 30/06 today shooting a 165 grain bullet at 2950 on paper is not better. However in practice this bullet retains all its weight upon impact. So thinking back to the momentum calculation which will penetrate better?

    165 grains or the crumbled mass of the cup and core bullet which may be at 90 grains after impact if it's lucky? More likely there would be many pieces in the 25-40 grain weight

    I guess the real answer to this question is not whether faster or heavier is best. But rather which retains it's weight better when the projectile comes to rest.
     
  12. d2wing

    d2wing Member

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    JJ, you do realize that while that formula is useful, it is not scientific for terminal ballistics. Momentum is not used to determine ballistic effects by any accredited scientist. However it is a useful shorthand used by some to discuss stuff just like this.
     
  13. BigBore44

    BigBore44 Member

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    ^^Ok, so while it doesn't scientifically explain terminal ballistics, JJ's explanation is so far the most detailed answer we've been given in the whole thread. Considering the huge amount of variables associated with all the different shot angles taken at all the different varieties of game, that have so many different densities of meat and bone, it seems pretty difficult to give a "Right" answer. Energy, velocity, momentum, bullet material construction, bullet weight, bullet diameter, type of bullet, type of game, angle of shot taken on said game, all play a role.

    Another member on here (he has a sticky thread about feral hogs) went from using a 7-08 for hogs to a .458 Socom. Why? Because he wanted to be able to shoot them from any angle and still get effective kills. Big and slow allows the shooter more shot angles without fear of lack of penetration to the vitals or CNS and doesn't tear up as much meat. You also have to be a more skilled hunter to use big and slow. Or be really skilled and hunt with stick and string.
     
  14. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    Here, plenty of science to read in this link. I'm not expert, but these guys are.

    http://ballisticstestinggroup.org/woundballistics.html

    For as hunting goes, I have few biases, just use a tool that works if I put it where it CAN work. Old school black powder to .25 caliber screamers, I find they both work pretty danged well. The biggest advantage to S&F is range.
     
  15. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    BTW, .458 SOCOM is a way to make an AR a bit less worthless. I'd rather shoot hog with a high powered rifle. If I want firepower, how about an M1A? Pricey, though. I do have a Hakim I could rig for night hunting, 11 rounds of 8x57 Mauser fast as I can pull the trigger. Never shot anything, but paper with it, but it does have POWER and firepower. Kinda reminds me of a semi-auto BAR, heavy, long, powerful full battle cartridge.
     
  16. d2wing

    d2wing Member

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    Agreed Bigbore. Either work well depending on knowing the strength and limitations of each.
    I used to think the big and slow was totally obsolete but through these discussions and data
    From various sources I see that it has it's uses. Especially if you cast and roll your own,
    Now that I understand the dynamics of penetration. As you said, accurate bullet placement is critical but then it is with all calibers.
    I always said bigger and faster is better. But I see that not all that fast can be good in the right circumstances. Please consider that my opinions are colored by my affection for Ma Duece. The .50 cal machine gun from action in Vietnam.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2014
  17. BigBore44

    BigBore44 Member

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    MC,
    I hope the AR guys don't read that comment lol. This thread will go off topic and be closed in short order. And FYI, I do have a SA M1A. It's topped with a nice VXII and Harris Bipod (Not on top though. Kinda pointless to have a bipod on top of your gun). Plenty of firepower for anything round these parts. But shooting animals at 200, 300, or even 400 yards isn't fun or a challenge. I'm more of an "up close and personal" kinda hunter. In my last 6 years of hunting, I haven't shot an animal past 47 yards. Even with my rifle(s) (2 deer in 6 years not taken by archery).

    My point about being a B&S fan is not to downplay high power S&F cartridges. It's merely to state that both have their "fans and fanatics" for good reasons. S&F has the advantage of not having high "hold over" on longer shots. And given a well placed broadside shot at those longer distances with the proper bullet, S&F= Dead critter. B&S doesn't have that advantage. But it has an already large wound channel (due to initial bullet diameter) and "great penetration from most any angle" advantage. And within the B&S's range (again with proper bullets) size, thickness, of animal doesn't really matter. Please don't bring up a texas heart shot on a rhino, or elephant. Those aren't realistic hunting scenarios.

    B&S "typically" means you have to get much closer to your game. S&F (DRASTICALLY) tipped the "advantage" scale to the hunter. I prefer a more even playing field.

    "Me against Mother Nature" doesn't take place at 300-400 yards.
     
  18. BigBore44

    BigBore44 Member

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    d2wing,
    Obsolete should never be because there is something "better". Is the .22, .243, 25-06, 7-08, .308, or 30-06 "obsolete" because of the invention of the magnum cartridges? I think not.

    My B&S cartridge is, wait for it, a 45-70. Wasn't that a shocking revelation? I didn't know much anything about the cartridge when I had the rifle given to me 5 years ago. But when I started reading and reloading, it opened my eyes to what I really had.
     
  19. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    Back when I was a kid, my mother had a square-faced hammer in the kitchen. Had blunt teeth on the face, maybe a pattern of 4x4 or maybe more. Anyhow, she'd buy cheap round steak and then beat on it to tenderize it.

    Lotsa threads remind me of that. :D

    Reckon this thread is tender enough, yet? :D
     
  20. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    Just used one of those the other night Art while preparing Pheasant for stir fry. Not really to tenderize it, but to make sure there was no pellets left in the meat.

    As for the thread....lot more civil than I imagined it would be as compared to most this vs that threads.
     
  21. KC45

    KC45 Member

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    Big and slow works and small and fast works too.
    Small and slow doesn't work.
     
  22. rbernie
    • Contributing Member

    rbernie Member

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    So - does that count as big-n-slow or small-n-fast? :evil:
     
  23. BigBore44

    BigBore44 Member

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    ^^Depends on what type of metal the hammer was made out of and if Art had been a good boy that day:neener:
     
  24. sage5907

    sage5907 Member

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    Nom De Forum quote: "Why would anyone limit themselves to a choice of either one or the other when you can have both choices available with a .30-06?"

    Best answer so far. All you have to do is listen to a 165 grain bullet hit a deer in the shoulder and you understand the killing power of a bullet going 2,850 fps and penetrating completely through the animal, breaking the shoulder and ending up against the far skin. It's a big whap and dead right there!
     
  25. JJHACK

    JJHACK Member

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    Sage, there is a very good reason we use 30/06 rifles with 165gr TSX bullets in Africa for our loaner rifles.

    My personal 30/06 used by clients has cleanly harvested well over 1000 big game around the world. I can count on one hand those lost in 20 years. Everyone of those was hit poorly though. Not the fault of the gun or bullet.

    Under 500 yards there is no reason in my experience to shoot anything more powerful. Unless dangerous game is on the agenda. It's a pussy cat to shoot so practice is easy.

    I have had 10 year old boys use it, 110 lb ladies, an 80 year old man, 16 year old girls. It's an old boring un-exciting bland lethal accurate killer.

    No superpower, no glitter, no fancy name or belted cartridge. Just does exactly what you expect of a hunting rifle.

    Oh yeah...... You can find ammo just about anyplace on earth as well, even in the most remote non English speaking corners of this planet.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2014
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