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Discussion Starter #1
several of my rifles love these bullets. I have not put one through an animal so I have no idea on bullet performance. I would like to hear your opinion of these bullets.

.257 90gr HPBT approx. 3580fps
.277 140gr HPBT approx. 3000fps
.284 160gr HPBT approx. 2900fps
 

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My opinion of Sierra bullets is that they are usually among the most accurate you can buy and they are quite affordable. However, IMHO, they have fallen behind other companies by not offering a premium bullet with either a bonded core or some other mechanism to control expansion. I harvested 3 big whitetails with the .277" 140gr SBT bullet and was not pleased with the performance from any of them. In 2 of the deer, the jacket very clearly separated and the third deer went nearly 200 yards before it dropped. I would not expect the hollow points to perform better, unless you consider rapid expansion good performance from a big-game bullet.
 

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I have had good results from the Sierra Pro Hunter bullets in 30 cal, 150 grain being used on white tail. None shot have made more than 10 steps combined, and My 06 shoots the 168 HPBT well as far as groups go, but Ive never tried the Gameking hollow points. Ive heard good things bout the 165 gr HPBT gameking, did I read that here or was it in a book? Cant recall, but I do agree with Broom_jm - Sierra does not bond their bullets chemically nor does their jackets have any "special" design to hold together, and the sierras I pick out of my berm are almost always in pieces, totally sepparated from the jacket, this includes the pro-hunters, even though Ive gotten excellent results on deer Ive shot with them, while the Core Lokts I pick out of the berm almost always are still together and not in pieces. This is far from a proper scientific test, lol, just my personal observations from my range here at home.

The 90 grain .257 you list, in my minds eye, would come nearer to coming apart than the other two, I had 2 different 25 cal rifles, one in 25-06 and one in 257 Weatherby mag and never was satisfied with them and I used 100 grain ballistic tips. I re barreled one rifle to 30-06 and never looked back. Sold the other...
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Yes, the .257 I suspected the same thing. However, that rifle with its twist rate just dosent have a taste for anything heavier. Maybe I'll just use it for a varmint gun. Accuracy is great with it. I do have another accurate load with it, exactly 2 grains less powder but I have not chronographed it. I shot the two for accuracy test and the 57.5 grain won out by just a smidgeon.
 

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The Gameking is really designed for longer range shots with the caliber it's designed for. I don't think they show any kind of "best performance impact velocity" but that is what the shooter needs. The bullet is very well made, but the shooter has to know what kind of shot they are likely to take before they choose the Gameking as their bullet. My very loose rule of thumb is minimum of 200 yard shot with most cartridges to use this bullet. I would think that if you call Sierra and ask them about a specific bullet, they would tell you what impact velocity the bullet will perform best in your specific caliber/bullet weight, and from that you can decide if it's the right bullet for the ranges you are likely to take shots. At the right impact velocity, they are an excellent bullet, usually very good BC with a boattail design, so less drop and less wind drift - exactly what you want for a bullet used on longer shots.
 

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Sierra as a brand shoots the best out of my rifles and revolvers of any jacketed bullet. I agree with others though that they don't really make a hunting bullet suited to the high-velocity crowd.
 

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The Gameking is really designed for longer range shots with the caliber it's designed for. I don't think they show any kind of "best performance impact velocity" but that is what the shooter needs. The bullet is very well made, but the shooter has to know what kind of shot they are likely to take before they choose the Gameking as their bullet. My very loose rule of thumb is minimum of 200 yard shot with most cartridges to use this bullet. I would think that if you call Sierra and ask them about a specific bullet, they would tell you what impact velocity the bullet will perform best in your specific caliber/bullet weight, and from that you can decide if it's the right bullet for the ranges you are likely to take shots. At the right impact velocity, they are an excellent bullet, usually very good BC with a boattail design, so less drop and less wind drift - exactly what you want for a bullet used on longer shots.
Mojo,

You're 100% correct, but what if you go out expecting a 200 yard shot and a trophy mule deer buck pops up out of nowhere and he's 35 paces away? Do you patiently wait for him to bounce off and whistle when he gets to 200? A good big-game bullet is not one that performs perfectly at a specific distance; they ALL do that! The ideal big-game bullet opens up and holds together at 30 feet while still expanding and penetrating completely, at 400 yards. The Gameking will probably be great at the longer range, but I know from personal experience that they do not hold together well at 30 feet.

Core-lokt, Partition, X bullet, A-Frame, Accubond, Interlock, etc...These are quality big-game bullets and they are well worth any additional cost, or the loss of gilt-edged accuracy, for the performance on game that they provide.
 

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All bullet manufacturers make bullets for different applications. The Sierra Gameking is specifically designed for long range shooting with superior accuracy, they will almost always have a higher BC than most other hunting bullets of the same weight in a given caliber, it is not designed to be an everyday big game bullet. Sierra makes the Pro Hunter bullets specifically for more common hunting ranges. And I think Sierra deserves credit for offering the Gameking - a bullet that is so unique - though, perhaps they would do well to inform shooters of the exact criteria the bullet is designed for - Nosler and Woodleigh both list an optimal impact velocity range for their bullets.
I would carry a rifle loaded with ammunition that works at moderate ranges, and if a long shot presents itself, I can load up a Gameking, knowing that it is more accurate with less drop and wind drift than other bullets, and it's designed to expand very well at the lower velocities the bullet will be traveling at upon impact with the target at those long ranges. For a .325 WSM the minimum range I would shoot a Gameking would probably be 300 yards, the 220 grain bullet is still moving about 2200 fps at that range. Now take that exact same bullet and shoot it from an 8mm mauser (8X57), and it'll be running only 2000 fps at the muzzle! Say a hunter gets a 100 yard shot at a moose with that gun, the Gameking is probably the perfect bullet for that shot, the impact velocity will be low maybe 1800 fps at best, but the Gameking is made to still expand perfectly at 1800 fps - best bullet choice for that hunt. Whereas, if the hunter had chosen an A-Frame, at 1800 fps the bullet would not expand at all. The hunter has the responsibility of choosing the right bullet for the conditions of their particular hunt.
I am not a fan of the Nosler Partition at higher velocities either, they lose a lot of mass at very high impact velocity. I am very curious about the Barnes TSX bullets expansion, most reports say that they expand like they claim, but the expansion is not much larger than bullet diameter.
The Gameking is a specifically designed bullet. If you use it for the purpose in which it was designed for, it performs remarkably well. The Accubond performs very well at almost all velocities, and has become my choice for almost everything. But if I have a once in a lifetime shot at a sheep at 500 yards, the Gameking is made for that, and they are very accurate.
Without contacting Sierra directly about each different bullet, it's hard to say where they will perform best. Look at the difference in muzzle velocities for the 7mm calibers or the .30 calibers, or like I mentioned, the 8mm's. A 7X57 will have a MV of maybe 2400 fps with a 175 grain bullet, yet a 7mm RUM will push that same bullet at 3200 fps - that's an 800 fps difference in velocity! The MV difference from low to high in the .30 caliber rounds is probably even wider. And Sierra or any other manufacturer has no way of knowing which cartridge you might be loading their bullet into. What the reloader needs is for all bullets to be given an optimum impact velocity range ... should be marked right on every box, and this will probably occur more often in the future. This way, the loader can use a ballistic chart for their particular rifle, and determine at what distance their bullet will be traveling at the appropriate velocity to give proper expansion. A hunter could tailor their ammunition to changing hunting situations - purpose-built ammunition - one of the benefits of loading your own ammunition.
As for the original post, I would bet that all of those velocities would probably tear up a Gameking pretty badly, however if those are all muzzle velocities, I would say that a Gameking launched at those speeds would really be ideal once you got out past 300 yards or so.
 

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Carry two different loads? Ridiculous. Adjust the distance you shoot based on the bullet you have loaded? That would be very accommodating of the game being hunted.

The Partition penetrates reliably, even when the front core separates completely. This causes dramatic wound channels and an exit wound for easy tracking. The SGK just blows up and if/when the animal runs off 150 yards, you've got a much tougher job finding it.

The Gameking is a target bullet, masquerading as a hunting bullet. It uses a simple, drawn copper jacket; technology that is pushing 100 years of age. Sierra makes some of the best target bullets in the world...the SGK is one of them.

We do agree on one thing: The Accubond is a very well-designed bullet that performs well irrespective of distance or impact velocity. It has an excellent BC and would be just as capable on that 500 yard sheep as the Gameking, but if you happen to peek over the top of a ridge and see one at 50 yards, you aren't going to wonder if the bullet is going to perform.
 

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broom_jm you are entirely wrong about the SGK, it is a purpose-built bullet, if you don't use it for that purpose, it's not going to give you the results you expect. One thing it has in common with match bullets is it's accuracy, ask anyone who shoots them, ask anyone who has tested bullets on a Juenke Internal Concentricity Comparator, the Sierra is an extremely consistent, well made bullet. And when shooting a 500 yard shot - as any hunter will tell you - bullet placement is key. So shooting a bullet that gives better accuracy, and has a higher BC will increase your odds over choosing a bullet simply because it has less expansion at higher velocities. Match your bullet to your hunt. How hard is it to carry multiple types of ammunition? Any hunt where you may encounter multiple species, it would be a good idea. 150 grain for whitetail, and 200 grain for bear, elk, moose or whatever. Most handloaders use multiple loads, why not on the same hunt? I do more shotgunning than anything else, and I don't think I've ever gone waterfowl hunting with less than 3 different shot sizes and multiple choke tubes - the hunter matching the ammunition to the hunt. If a hunter loads Gamekings or any other hollowpoint bullet for a hunt where they may be shooting big game at 30 yards - that is just an uneducated shooter. Either didn't research the type of bullet they loaded, or didn't know anything about terminal ballistics. Very poor judgement.
 

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My opinion of Sierra bullets is that they are usually among the most accurate you can buy and they are quite affordable. However, IMHO, they have fallen behind other companies by not offering a premium bullet with either a bonded core or some other mechanism to control expansion. I harvested 3 big whitetails with the .277" 140gr SBT bullet and was not pleased with the performance from any of them. In 2 of the deer, the jacket very clearly separated and the third deer went nearly 200 yards before it dropped. I would not expect the hollow points to perform better, unless you consider rapid expansion good performance from a big-game bullet.
Carry two different loads? Ridiculous. Adjust the distance you shoot based on the bullet you have loaded? That would be very accommodating of the game being hunted.

The Partition penetrates reliably, even when the front core separates completely. This causes dramatic wound channels and an exit wound for easy tracking. The SGK just blows up and if/when the animal runs off 150 yards, you've got a much tougher job finding it.

The Gameking is a target bullet, masquerading as a hunting bullet. It uses a simple, drawn copper jacket; technology that is pushing 100 years of age. Sierra makes some of the best target bullets in the world...the SGK is one of them.

We do agree on one thing: The Accubond is a very well-designed bullet that performs well irrespective of distance or impact velocity. It has an excellent BC and would be just as capable on that 500 yard sheep as the Gameking, but if you happen to peek over the top of a ridge and see one at 50 yards, you aren't going to wonder if the bullet is going to perform.
broom, of your 3 deer you shot with the GK, what were the details? Did you shoot for bone? How far did they go? I've not used the GK's on deer, but my brother and I have shot dozens with the Pro Hunters over the last 15 years or so and had exactly one run. They're a top notch deer bullet.

Obviously everyone has their opinion of a bullet and for every bullet there's someone who say's it sucks. I don't think there's too many bullets designed for big game that won't do the job they're designed for as long as their used within their design parameters. Sierras are no different and are a top notch deer bullet. Most HPBT GameKings are tougher then the SP GameKing, though there are a few exceptions, one being the .257 90 grn HPBT....that's a varmint bullet; the 120 HPBT is a big game bullet. I've been working with the 160 HPBT in my 280 and it is very accurate, though I have not shot anything with it yet.

Deer aren't hard to kill and any GK or PH designed for big game will kill them. Premium bullets aren't really needed for deer except in a few instances, but C & C's are hard to beat. I also think too many get caught up in the marketing that if we don't get 90% + weight retention and a perfectly mushroomed bullet, it's performance is questioned. The fragmenting tends to kill quicker which is why when John Nosler designed the Partition, he designed it to lose some of it's weight. Same with the AB, which was designed to perform in a similar manner. I've read recently about the Bergers being extremely quick deer killers due to penetrating a few inches then expanding in an explosive manner.
 

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If that works for you great, but I don't think that I could reliably switch ammo around in the middle of the hunt. Too confusing. Speaking strictly for myself, of course.

I know one of the tenets of handloading is developing multiple loads for the same rifle, but guess I am lazy and just want one bullet to handle whatever I point the rifle at. Might see deer, hogs, turkey, coyotes, and whatnot on a single hunt. A basic cup and core bullet does it at muzzle velocities under 3,000fps. Some guns I have loads worked up with Partitions and I think that is a do-it-all bullet. Some experience with X bullets too and if they work in your gun, great.

Over 3,000fps MV I think you have to be careful about bullet selection.

Been there, done that.... learned a few things the hard way. Like I said if it works for you to be switching out loads, etc., then more power to you. About the only concession I've made for this type of thing is to keep a .22 rifle handy when hunting at a fixed blind. It handles the smaller varmits well without disturbing the area with a lot of noise.

Heck I don't even bother switching choke tubes on the sporting clays course..... guess I really am lazy!
 

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I have to agree with you Mike, carrying multiple loads on a hunt would be a problem. I have worked up different loads for the same rifle that work quite well, however the groups might be great but each load produces a different group location at a given range. Dont think this would be a good idea when hunting. I did notice something interesting last weekend while fire forming cases. I used a reduced load of H4198 pushing 160g speer bullets (have a bunch and dont normally use 160s for hunting) anyway i was just poping off rounds into a 4x4 post on end approx 30yrds and noticed alot of the bullets would shed the jacket when they hit the dirt. Maybe this is normal, but after seeing this i dont think i would use these bullets for hunting they seem to come apart much to easy.
 

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I've used SGKs for about ten years in my 270, 308 and 7.5. I go with the heavy for caliber GKs and have never found one!!! - All deer and hogs were one shot kills with 2 holes in each one! Closest was 70 yds - Fartherest was 280.

PS: for calibers 8mm and up I use the NPTs
 

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I use the 90-grain Sierra and the 100- Speer jacketed hollow points in the 25-35 and the 25-35AI with good results on West Texas deer. <y shots are seldom over 100 yards.
The Sierra 90- grain bullet driven over 3,000 fps by 36.5 grains of Alliant Reloder 15 leaves a lot of lead through the lungs on broadside shots. The Sierra bullet has always shed its jacket for me but the core exits - I have not punched a shoulder with this bullet.
The 100-grain Speer JHP bullet opens up quickly but holds together very well and leaves a large exit wound on broadside shots.
Both bullets perform better when shot from the 25-35. The 90-grain Sierra ahead of 26.0 grains of Alliant Reloder 10 touches 2,700 fps from my 20” Winchester and it will flatten deer inside 100-yards - but it will leave quite a bit of meat blood shot.
The 100-grain Speer JHP is my go-to bullet for the 25-35 and at 2,550 to 2,600 fps using Reloder 10 or Reloder 15 the Speer bullet will punch a shoulder and cross the body with a good exit wound. I really like this bullet in the 25-35 and I am trying to lay “more-than-a-few” boxes back just in case the new Deep Curl does not live up to the wonderful legacy left by this Hot Core bullet.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
those numbers were all muzzle velocities, the .257 was chronographed, the other two are just estimates from the books. Probably a little on the high side of actual.
 

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I, for one, was not aware the GameKing was specifically for long range hunting. I started using the .264 - 140 gr GK spitzer in my old 6.5 Swede. With a MV of 2500 fps, not much worry about blowing the hide of any bullet. To date, my largest whitetail was killed with the Swede and a GK 140 at 200 yards. The bullet made a 3/4" exit hole through the front of a shoulder. Last year, I started using a 6.5x300wsm and pushing the same bullet at 3100fps MV. I shot 3 whitetail bucks and 5 coyotes. The bucks were as close as 90 yards and as far as 434 yards. The bullets passed cleanly through both sides without excess destruction or any sign of blow up. All of the animals were dead right there. Not even a kick.
 

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I used for the last 28yrs the Sierra G/K 165gr HPBT in my 300Wby, 30-06, 300Win mag. for everything from coyote, hogs, deer, antelope and Black Bear and that included one Elk that I shot at 80yds with a heart and lung shot that exited and at 90 yards dropped in his track the last bear I shot. The bullet was also a heart lung shot and took the heart and lungs out the other side through a tennis ball size hole, we know this because when we cleaned the bear there was no heart or lungs in his chest cavity.

Now, because it is a HP don't think it is not a tough bullet. It is the toughest bullet Sierra makes in the Game King line for 150 to 165gr bullets that they make and you can call them and they will tell you it is so. I have in my testing put one of these HPBT Game/Kings at 3320fps out of a 300Wby through an 8" laminated beam at 25 yards and was still able to dig what was left of the bullet out of an earth embankment 75yrds further down range. To say they are only good for long shots tells me someone has not used or knows what these bullets will do in the field. Frankly, they don't know what they are talking about. I culled deer and hogs with the state of Mississippi for two years and all the deer and hogs dropped where they were shot and all exits. Closest being 30yds furthest of these shots was 230 while culling.

I have shot a lot of deer, don't remember how many hogs with this bullet and the kills were devastating and all exits. It is an accurate, very accurate bullet and is a real sleeper.

Five shot group 100yds
 
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