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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Went to the range again this past weekend and finally, after numerous powders, charges and other factors, have got what I feel is a good accurate load for my 300 WSM. I'll be hunting elk exclusively in SW Colorado this year. I say exclusively because my original intent was to get drawn for a Mule Deer Buck AND also hunt for Bull Elk during the state's 2nd season rifle hunt. I originally was going to use my Weatherby Vanguard 270 with a 150 gr partition bullet. None of my hunting party got drawn for deer so we opted to draw a leftover cow elk tag and/or bull elk tag which we can buy over the counter. Anyway, back to the 300 WSM. I picked up some 180 gr Speer Grand Slam bullets (100) on closeout of our local Sportman's Warehouse. :( I do have 180 gr Hornandy SST's, CT Ballistic Silvertips in 180 gr and found some Sierra BTSP in 190 gr. I also have some 180 gr Barnes XXX and some Nosler E-Tips also in 190 gr. I came across a few of the old Winchester Silvertips in a 180 gr at a yard sale and picked them up. Only problem is, there are only 10 rds. What shall I use when hunting this year? The Grand Slams seem to be all over the paper and don't seem to group well at the range however, I hear they have excellent downrange punch. The CT's & SST's are very accurate. A few years seasons ago, I shot an elk with a CT in a 180 gr. It was a parting shot thru the leftside which punctured the lungs. It took awhile for the animal to go down but he finally did. I never recovered the bullet. There was no exit wound. Never shot any animal with either the Barnes or the E-Tips so I have nothing to compare them to except to say that they are accurate. Any thoughts or experience with these bullets? Thanks. :confused:
 

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Piney Woods Moderator
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I have found the SST's to be very accurate out of my 270, 30-06 and 338 Win Mag. I don't think you would go wrong with them. The SST's are designed to expand over a wide velocity range.
 

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For Elk Hunting go with the most accurate Bonded bullet that your gun prefers. Nosler Accu-bonds, Hornady Innerbonds, Trophy Bonded Bear Claws, Remington Core-Loct Ultra Bondeds, and Swift A-frames would all be great choices. Partitions are always a good choice too. A .30 cal 180 gr bullet in any of these would be perfect at .300 WSM speeds. I am not saying that a whole slew of Elk haven't been killed with non bonded bullets, but in case you would hit a big bone, the extra toughness is well worth the small extra cost.
 

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Play with OAL with the Grand Slams and you might find the accuracy sweet spot. They're a good terminal performance bullet. If not, try some 180 Nosler partitions. I've been happy with all Hornady bullets too.
 

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If i were you id use the X bullet. I personally will most likely be using partitions this season. Good idea to shy away from weak bullets in .30 cal in case you get a close up shot at WSM velocitys.
 

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Sorry to say, but none of the bullet companies have designed a 30 caliber bullet that is suitable for cleanly harvesting elk from a magnum class rifle. You'll probably have to step up to a 378 Weatherby or 416 Rigby with a copper solid slug to guarantee adequate penetration.

OK, I'm giving you a hard time, but c'mon...ANY of the bullets you listed will work! In fact, if you can find a 30 caliber bullet of 180 grains, or more, that won't reliably kill an elk when fired from a 300 WhateverMag, I'll buy you a hundred count box of one that will. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Play with OAL with the Grand Slams and you might find the accuracy sweet spot. They're a good terminal performance bullet. If not, try some 180 Nosler partitions. I've been happy with all Hornady bullets too.
Great idea Shawn. I hadn't thought of that. The Grand Slams have a cannelure so I like to seat the bullet on the front edge of that cannelure. I'll try backing it off a bit for bullet to be closer to the lands. We'll see if that gets my grouping better. I actually bought those GS with the idea that I would use them for elk but was disappointed with the accuracy. Thanks, I'll give it a try on the range.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have found the SST's to be very accurate out of my 270, 30-06 and 338 Win Mag. I don't think you would go wrong with them. The SST's are designed to expand over a wide velocity range.
I have had excellent luck with SST's on Mule Deer both in accuracy and in stopping power. Never tried using them on elk though. You ever killed any elk with SST's and that 338 WM?
 

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Piney Woods Moderator
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No, I have not been fortunate enough to have killed one with the SST and 338 Mag. I have killed them with everything from a 243 to 30-06 though. I have been using the 338 Win mag and 338 Marlin for the last couple of years without getting a shot.
 

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For Elk Hunting go with the most accurate Bonded bullet that your gun prefers.
I shot my first couple elk before anyone but Speer had a bonded bullet. And of course, without a bonded bullet, they will certainly bounce off on impact. :rolleyes:

Guess what, a good 180-190gr Hornady Interlok, or Sierra Game King in 180gr will work just fine, at any range you can actually make a decent shot. BTW Speer regular bullets will also work. Nosler Partitions are also a good choice, and I'm sure the Nosler bonded core bullets would also be a good option.

In the real world, there are few, if any, 180gr/.30 cal bullets that wouldn't work fine from any .308 cartridge from .308 Winchester to .300 Weatherby Mag.
 

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IMO, velocity, shot placement, and bullet construction - coupled with bullet weight - are the key factors; nothing new there! Just about any 180 gr bullet from 30-06-type velocities will get the job done. Start shooting big bulls in the shoulder though, and someday you may lose one. Getting into the WSMs, WM-type velocities, I'd step up to bullets a bit stouter than std cup-and-core or BT unbonded-type designs, like the NP, proven bondeds, GS, unless you only take boiler-house shots. Getting into the WBY & RUM velocities, step up to the 200's, or lighter premiums like Barnes, XP3, A-Frame,
Failsafes if you can find them; think the GS's would do OK here too. JMO. We don't always get the shot we want, so use the bullet that will get it done with the shot you're willing to take, or can't control yourself in passing up!
 

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Out of the ones you have listed, the TSX would be my first choice if elk were on the docket. All of the others would work fine with a good rib shot, but on a hard quartering angle, up close as WSM speeds, I would want the tougher of those bullets. If you like Nosler PT's, I would give them a try and also the Accubond in 180gr. It is hard to beat the 180gr PT in a magnum for all around performance and it is likely to not ever fail you with decent shot placement. Good luck with whatever you choose. Maybe you can get those GS's to work. They are a great old bullet too. Scotty
 

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Thats to bad those GS are not grouping for you. I had some 160 grain that I dumped an elk with at 180yard, DRT. but the bullet went thru a lot of bone and was just fragments. Actually I have had great success and pass thru's on elk with just the plain jane 162gr Hornady spire points out of the 280. I've never had an issue even with quartering shots. I do tend to limit my shots to 200yards and in.

good luck
GF

The point I meant to add, is my buddy uses 165gr hornady's spire points out of his 06, and that bullet has accounted for many elk. I would bet the heavier bullet would perform well even at the 300 wsm velocity.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Play with OAL with the Grand Slams and you might find the accuracy sweet spot. They're a good terminal performance bullet. If not, try some 180 Nosler partitions. I've been happy with all Hornady bullets too.
I went to the range this past weekend with about 10 rds of 180 gr Grand Slams. I seated at various lengths and did so in groups 3. I was finally able to get an acceptable group using the fine GS bullets. This group came in at .80 inch @ 100 yds with a crosswind of about 10-15 mph. This was the best one I could get using these bullets. Thanks for the advice Shawn about playing with the OAL. I've got my hunting bullet now. I'm going to concentrate now on becoming more comfortable with shooting at various distances. Here's a copy of my target.
 

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Hey Leo, looks like you did the work many don't want to take the time to do. Good for you, and I think that GS will not disappoint in its performance. I may have to do more work with the GS supply of bullets I have - in .257, .308, & .338. I hope you plug a good animal this fall with them.
 

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That looks good buddy. What was your final load that shot .80"? Sounds like you have a winner. Hoping the accuracy holds out at long range for you also. Can't wait to see some more targets further out! Scotty
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
That looks good buddy. What was your final load that shot .80"? Sounds like you have a winner. Hoping the accuracy holds out at long range for you also. Can't wait to see some more targets further out! Scotty
The load was Viht N560 @ 64.5 gr. I loaded up 20 rds and seated them accordingly and put them aside for the hunt. I'm going to load up some Hornady PSP 180 gr and use them for target practice @ 200+ yds. Funny observation made on the range. It seems that out of all the different bullets I was using, it was the less expensive bullets (Hornady PSP & Nosler BT's) that grouped best. I guess my Vanguard likes them or perhaps there's alot more to these bullets ballistically than meets the eye. ;)
 

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I haven't seen ANY rifle that didn't shoot Nosler Ballistic Tips pretty well. I haven't tried them all, but in all my different rifles, BT's have shot really well. They are kind of the standard by how I judge my rifles ability. Plus, they are pretty inexpensive and excellent deer getters. Good luck on your hunt, it sounds like you have it dialed in really well. Vihta powders are becoming pretty popular also. Must be something to it. Scotty
 
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