Picking a new hunting round for my .308

Which .308 round would you choose to hunt with?

  • 130gr Barnes TTSX

    Votes: 12 26.1%
  • 150gr Hornady CX

    Votes: 9 19.6%
  • 165gr Nosler Accubond

    Votes: 24 52.2%
  • 175gr Controlled Chaos

    Votes: 1 2.2%

  • Total voters
    46

Kevinq6

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Joined
Dec 31, 2016
Messages
231
Location
Texas
It’s about time for me to buy more hunting ammo so I decided to look at how some rounds might perform out of my rifle. I have a .308 with a 16in barrel so according to what I could find online, subtracting 250fps from the box velocity should be about the velocity out of my rifle. I would test the drop at the range to confirm.

The rounds I am considering are listed below. My main priority is hunting deer out to at least 250yds but I also hunt wild pigs and coyotes.

130gr Barnes TTSX (3125fps Ballistic Coefficient: .350)
150gr Hornady CX (2900fps Ballistic Coefficient:.418)
165gr Nosler Accubond (2840fps Ballistic Coefficient: .475)
175gr Lehigh Defense Controlled Chaos (2600fps Ballistic Coefficient: .467)


130gr Barnes TTSX
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130gr-TTSX.png

130gr-TTSX.png

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This is a solid copper bullet and the lighter weight allows it to go fast. Barnes recommends a minimum of 1800fps for some expansion and many hunters recomment 2000-2200fps as a preferred minimum. The calculator shows it holding over 2200fps past 250yds. This round also shoots very flat, within 3in of aim out to 250yds.


150gr Hornady CX
150gr-Hornady-CX.png

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This is Hornady’s new copper bullet. Supposedly the gliding metal gives you 200fps extra but I would just have to see. Hornady recommends a minimum velocity of 2000fps. If I choose 2200fps just to be safe and ensure good damage then this round would be good out to 200yds. I could shoot some pigs at 250yds to decide if I would use it on deer at that distance.


165gr Nosler Accubond
165gr-Accubond.png

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This is a bonded bullet designed to shed around 30% of it’s weight and then have a smaller base penetrate deep. The minimum velocity for expansion according to Nosler is 1800fps but this will be above 2000fps out past 300yds out of my gun. I have shot a pig at 215yds with this round and the rifle damage was good.


175gr Controlled Chaos
175gr-Lehigh-Controlled-Chaos.png

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These non-lead bullets are known to create a high amount of damage by shedding weight quickly. The minimum velocity for expansion is 1500fps so there would be no problem there. I’d be interested in seeing how accurate these are at range. Meat damage may be a little more than I’d like but on a lung shot it should produce very quick kills on deer. Not as flat shooting as the other options.


This post is just for fun, please let me know which one you would use or if you would add another round to the list. Right now I would need to test all of them except the 165gr Accubond for accuracy.
 
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I voted 150 CX.

I think the 130 would be cool, but worry about it being lighter for caliber.

Since it's deer and maybe pig/yote, I feel like accubond is kinda boring and old tech. Still fantastic, but this is about trying something new not going with old faithful.

I think the controlled chaos would be sweet to try, but like you said, meat damage.

So I voted 150 monolithic copper
 
If you're hunting game over 500 lbs and/or taking shots approaching 500 yards 308 bullet choice starts to become critical. But for deer and hogs just about any 308 bullet 125 gr or heavier will do what you want to do. Unless you're hunting really BIG hogs. Personally, I'd choose a 150 gr Ballistic Tip, or just about any 150 gr conventional bullet. You don't need anything special, nor expensive.

But if forced to choose between your options I'd go with either the 165 Accubond or 130 TTSX. Whichever shot better. The 165 is heavier than you need, but if it shoots better than 150's then use it. The 130 TTSX may be ideal if it shoots well. I just don't know anything about the other 2.

You won't lose 250 fps compared to a 24" barrel, closer to 150 fps, maybe less. But the numbers printed on the box may be optimistic even from a 24" barrel. So who knows what your actual speed will be. But I don't think the 16" barrel will be a real handicap for you. The only real negative is noise. Don't let the shorter barrel and slight loss of velocity impact your decision. I'd choose the same bullet for a 24" barrel that I'd use in a 16" barrel.
 
I voted 150 CX.

I think the 130 would be cool, but worry about it being lighter for caliber.

Since it's deer and maybe pig/yote, I feel like accubond is kinda boring and old tech. Still fantastic, but this is about trying something new not going with old faithful.

I think the controlled chaos would be sweet to try, but like you said, meat damage.

So I voted 150 monolithic copper

Yeah I am intrigued by it. I did pick 150gr instead of the 165 since people say to go light for more speed. What I might do is test the cx for accuracy and then shoot a pig or two at 200+ yards and see if I am feeling confident it would do enough damage on a lung shot on a deer. Where I hunt they want anything experimental (new bullet, longer shot) to be done on a pig before you shoot a game animal.
 
My first choice is not on your list. 178Eldx. My second choice for 250yds in a .308 on deer would be the 150SGK. If you are gonna stay inside of 200yds, then the 150cx would be my second choice.
 
Of your choice I was tied between the ttsx and the nab, nothing wrong with either, 130 is the right weight for this and deer ish game, the 165 nab is just more than I'd need or use but that doesn't make it wrong, if I were worried about the high winds we have here, I'd pick it first, if bigger than deer were on the table, I'd tie it with the 150 cx, or possibly pick it first, the controlled chaos would just be cool, but I couldn't justify it for your uses so I shan't ask you to. Truly I'd group the 130 next to the 165 at 250 yds and hunt with the winner based on your explanation thus far, if we can ONLY pick one, you already know you liked the nab performance, the ttsx won't beat it, but the fun is still worth the note.
Eta not on the list but honorable mentions should include the 165 sst and the 178 eldx, heavy preference to the sst.
 
After having the Barnes 110gn TAC Tx bullet invert my opinion of the 300blk, I have been wanting to try them out in other stuff so that’s the direction I would go.

I have to try their 139gn LRX out in a 7-08 first though.

Nosler Partitions have always been solid contenders for killing stuff but not so much on paper. If it’s an important hunt to me, there is a good chance I am using them.
 
I mainly hunt for deer, but would love to go pig hunting someday.
My .308 is a Tikka T3x lite with a 20 inch barrel.
My hunting load for last season was the Nosler Accubond but at 150 grains. I can’t say how well they worked out of my rifle because I didn’t harvest any deer.
But, I have used them exclusively out of my REM 700 in 30-06 and have been extremely happy with the results.
Of the two bullets I’ve recovered both retained approximately 65% of their original weight.
I’ve had a few drop right there’s and a few travel walking dead. But never over forty yards.
That will remain my load for the 30-06, but I’m developing a load with the 130 ttsx for this coming season for my .308.
My max range is out to 300 yards and the longest kil I’ve had was around 270 yards.
If I can find an accurate load I’m pretty confident that the 130s will be my choice for my .308.
 
From that list, accubond, but in 150. A shorter barrel is Already at a speed disadvantage, there’s not much that the bigger BC of the heavier bullet can do with even less speed (due to its weight).
The 130gr ttsx also seems good for this role.
 
The 165 Gr Accubond is the only bullet I use in the .308. Between my girls and I we’ve killed 5 elk I’m thinking at least 6 deer and a couple of pronghorn in the last couple of years. 3 of those elk have been at over 500 yards. All were put down with boringly effective and absolutely perfect bullet performance.

In the .308 I’m a huge 165 Gr Accubond fan.
 
Inside of 300 yards, the only correct answer is the TTSX. So the question is how much farther than 250 yards and how often will you shoot beyond 300?

If you expect shots out to 400 or beyond, then the accubond or similar. If not, definitely the TTSX.
 
For deer any of those would work, I'd probably choose the cheapest :) I voted for the 150 gr. but I have no experience with all copper.
I've used and am using 125 gr Sierra Pro-Hunter for 30-06 and it works well for deer inside of 200. Before that I used 150 grain cup and core bullets for 20 years and never felt like that was a wrong choice.

_jeff
 
Inside of 300 yards, the only correct answer is the TTSX. So the question is how much farther than 250 yards and how often will you shoot beyond 300?

If you expect shots out to 400 or beyond, then the accubond or similar. If not, definitely the TTSX.

Most of my shots are 25-215, with an occasional 250yd -300 at one blind. There is one other place with a possible 350yd shot but I don't see game there as much. If I get real accurate at 300 I might try the TTSX on a pig at 350. I will need to put a little range time in this summer to shoot 250-300. I'll definitely check back here later this summer with results, hopefully I can test these at 250-300 on a pig.
 
In my experience, the all-copper bullets thrive on speed. Starting them at 3000+ fps can give impressive terminal ballistics. At significantly lower velocity, well, they work, but I wouldn't spend the money.

Conversely, I really like 180 bullets in .30 caliber - but launched from a short .308 they're likely to be going pretty slow.

Out of the original list, I would pick the 165 Accubond as a reliable bullet that will move out at a decent speed and do the job with any reasonable placement.
 
After having the Barnes 110gn TAC Tx bullet invert my opinion of the 300blk, I have been wanting to try them out in other stuff so that’s the direction I would go.

I have to try their 139gn LRX out in a 7-08 first though.

Nosler Partitions have always been solid contenders for killing stuff but not so much on paper. If it’s an important hunt to me, there is a good chance I am using them.
I compared 140gr Partitions to 140gr SMKs in my 6.5 PRC and it was basically a wash lol. Idk about 308 though.
 
A good while back I picked up a little Ruger Compact with a 16.5" barrel. I chose it due to the heavy cover and river bottoms we were hunting at the time. The main goal at that time was reducing the feral hog population on a friend's property, but there were also trophy sized whitetail there as well.

Shots could range from as close as the end of the muzzle to as far across several pastures you felt like reaching out. One area was an 800ac cotton field that was particularly hit hard by the hogs.

At the time we were burning up a lot of rounds so cost was a factor. It simply wasn't needed to go with any of the premium type bullets so I picked out factory loads in 150 and 165gr and went to town. The overall winner was the time tested 150gr Core Lokt which grouped around 2" at 200yds from the little rig topped with a 1.5x6 Burris scope.

To date I have shot Barnes, and Nosler both but they do not give the same performance. I loaded the 130gr Barnes TTSX for my grandsons when they were starting out so I could load lighter but still get velocity and penetration without the added recoil.

Back when I started out with the Remington ammo I could pick it up for around $10 a box after hunting season and would get 10 boxes and be good for most of the year. Since I shot so many I finally started loading them, buying the bullets in bulk before Remington quit selling bulk components. Loaded over H4895 they were easy to reach the factory velocities and the accuracy was surprisingly a bit better. To date I have reached out well past where I thought would be prudent and still connected and effectively dropped feral hogs. Multiple deer have fallen and even one cow elk.

My thoughts are go with what's accurate in a 150 - 165gr and don't sweat the fancy stuff. These two weights in a standard cup and core have been producing freezer filling for a long time.
 
I voted for the 165 grain Nosler because it made the most sense given your criteria. I personally would stay away from pure copper. If you haven't heard, you need to go up one size in order to maintain the same efficiency as in lead. I personally would recommend a 165 Hornady Interbond or a 165 Nosler Partition. Be sure to practice with your final choice at the range, you will find your results to be a lot different than the published info on each bullet.
 
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