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I'm looking for a bullet to handload that has good expansion at close range <75 yds.

I presently load 220 gr Speer bullets with various powders and charges. I've gotten good results with the following: RE12 w/38gr, 4064 w/36 gr, and 2015 w/33 gr. They group great at the range and I've taken deer with these rounds but I haven't recovered a bullet until recently. I found that the recovered bullet which retained 95% of it's weight had very little expansion. it went from .358 to .390 which is minimal at best. Also, consider it was a 40 yard pass through shot that lodged into a Maple.

Is this bullet failue or is this what I should expect with these variables?

-Thank you Bill
 

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I believe you'll find this link (from M.O. forums) to an extensive .35 Rem bullet test of GREAT interest:

http://www.marlinowners.com/forums/index.php/topic,43257.0.html


A small portion reference the 220gr bullet:
I have used the 220 Speer on deer with good success, with a decent wound channel and excellent penetration, but this was also at the closer ranges. I expect that it would be difficult to recover a bullet from a deer unless maybe it was a lengthwise shot, and I am not sure even that would stop it unless it encountered a full stomach or a lot of bone along the way. Actually, it is probably completely unnecessary as a deer bullet, and likely the 200s would do a better job there. I also cannot see using it for longer range shooting on light resistance, like a rib shot on a 200 yard whitetail deer. However, it can be applied to better effect on tougher animals, and am I glad the .35 user has the option of its availability should he need it. Certainly, it is the most accurate bullet available in my 336's, and I attribute this to the long bearing surface of the bullet and the low extreme spreads and standard deviations of handloaded rounds, which have high loading density due to the deeper seating of the 220 grain bullet. This bullet has more shank below the cannelure than any other, but when loaded looks identical to rounds loaded with the 180 Speer as they share the exact same nose profile. Don't mistake one for the other when hunting, as the 180s and 220s hit nowhere near each other with the same sight setting. Marlin 336s in .35 need to be rezeroed each time bullet weight changes or when a significant velocity increase or decrease occurs with the same bullet weight
 

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Welcome to ShootersForum, Cybergrunt!

TnHunter just gave you the absolute best advice you could ask for on this topic. It's a L O N G read, but that dissertation (no other term to describe it) on 35-caliber bullets will completely answer your question!

Long story short, if you don't want to read the whole thing yourself? 200gr Remington Core-lokt is simply the best bullet available for the 35 Remington.
 
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