You really dont need the 286 gr bullet unless you are hunting buffalo. The 250 gr Nosler Accubond or Barnes Tripleshok does just great and you dont have so much bullet drop. The difference isnt huge but its there. I used my 9.3x62 on a good sized kudu in Namibia and one shot was all that was needed. I used a handload that drove the 250 Accubond to just over 2500 fps. The recovered bullet, one of only two recovered on my hunt retained about 80 percent of its weight, about like a Partition. I also killed two gemsbuck which are generally considered to be lots tougher than kudu with one shot apiece with the same load as well. I will be hunting eland and waterbuck and possibly kudu in Zim this June and will be using my 9.3 with the Barnes bullet this time and with the utmost confidence.
Thank you sestoppelman,
I am not sure but I think that every caliber has a more suitable weight of bullet to use (obviously depending on the situation) and with an expected range of not over 150 yards, maybe is better to use the 286 grains one
I totally agree with your point about bullet weight and if one can know the expected distances then of course the 286 is totally right because at that range the bullet drop difference is very small. However one does not always get what one expects. The Barnes Triple shok in particular being a longer bullet because its lead free will penetrate right up with the heavier bullet, perhaps even more so and its plenty of weight. Whatever bullet you choose, shoot straight and the game will go down quickly as the 9.3 hits verrrrry hard indeed. Have a grea hunt!
Thank you very much
Barnes TSX was another option, and I say was becouse It is almost imposible to get it in Spain
in 286 grains for 9,3x62
The 285 Lapua Mega would be fine and if ranges are definantly going to be under 150 yards (which is what I thought they would be for me) then any RNSP will perform well in the 9.3.
That's a very nice East Cape kudu nsok!!! Congradulations!
Have killed all of mine with the 9.3x62 and 286grn bullets. Although a 308, 30/06, 7x57 and the like will kill most game in most situations, I prefer to be prepared for those other times.
Interesting comments all. That said, earlier I got an email from africahunting.com which advertised a number of things, including an article titled, "What Calibre to Bring on a One-Gun Safari?"
I responded to that article with a rather longer-winded than planned missive, in which I refer to a cartridge of American heritage which I've seen no one discussing in this site's forums, and which actually gets overlooked by many Americans, and which I feel is a very suitable option fitting "in between" the lighter and heavier cartridges you all have discussed. It is something I had a custom rifle built for about seven years ago intending it for use on elk and/or moose, but which will serve just fine for a plains game african hunt -- and using certain loads, would suffice for leopards, lions, and even the cape buffalo in those countries which would allow it...
This is the .35 Whelen. In a nutshell, your typical loads are around 3,000 foot pounds at the muzzle, well below the 3,500 typical ft/lbs of the 9.3 x 62mm Mauser, but notable above the .30-06. However, there are rather new loadings out by an ammo manufacturer called DOUBLE TAP which brings it to 3,600+ ft/lbs and one even over 3,700 ft/lbs, which makes it almost a twin in power to the 9.3 Mauser. That said, it's far more flexible a cartridge in its commercial offerings than the 9.3 Mauser because the latter loads come, from what I've seen on the market, exclusively in the 286 grain bullet weight. Meanwhile, the .35 Whelen has readily available loads ranging from the Barnes TSX (lead free solid) at 200 grains, through 225 grains, 250 grains, and up to the Woodleight Weldcore 310 grain. The advantage of the 200 grain Barnes and 225 Nosler Accubond is these rounds extend the useful range of the rifle out to at least 300 yards. Bullet drop on the Barnes, in particular, is rather negligable and yet it still hits with a lot of energy.
The others fall into the 250 yard maximum range, starting at 2,900 to 3,100 ft/lbs of energy at the muzzle.
Then, for those who would like something in the middle, there's the one I think I'm going to bring on my African safari hunt, which is the Federal Premium Triple Shok 225 Grain Trophy Bonded Bear Claw. This delivers over 3,300 ft/lbs at the muzzle, and is flat enough for use out to at least 275 yards. Being I'm planning on spending this hunt mainly in the Bushveld, that is my number one choice.
And, as I note in the article, I like this gun because while it's certainly a thumper, it doesn't kick any more than the .300 Winchester Magnum, and in most loads, kicks less. Being recoil shy, that's a very important thing for me.
I'll admit it, when it comes to recoil, I'm a whimp! BUT, I do want enough gun to do the job right, and in more than just 'ideal' conditions.
Shot placement is the most impotant issue. I used a 30/06 and dropped him right in his tracks. any 30 caliber will do the job!
Totally agree that shot placement is the most important issue, with ANY animal. Knock on wood I have NEVER been off target and have always taken my animals with a clean shot. With the acception of my last, which was a double lung shot taking out six ribs (three on each side), on a white tail doe, all have been head or spine shots, killing the animal instantly. But I am not too proud to acknowledge the possibility that I might one day, in a hunt, be off the mark a little, and need whatever that little extra the most appropriate cartridge/load would offer.
I feel secure that the .30-06 is a fine bush gun on most animals.
If I were to bring one gun, it would be my .35 Whelen. But I plan to bring two. What do think about the .280 Remington? I was thinking seriously of having an FN Mauser action I have built into a .280 Remington Ackley Improved. Nosler now offers two AI factory loads; a 140 grain and a 160 grain, both accubond, and both advertised as providing velocities and energy at the muzzle equivalent to your average 7mm Remington Magnum load -- right at 3100 ft/lbs.
Well ol buddy, I will tell you one thing. Its one thing to brag about your shooting prowess here, but dont do it to your PH before the hunt starts or you will surely look the fool when you do miss or botch a shot and rest assured, you probably will. Everyone does.
Sorry there sestoppleman. Apparently I didn't use the right words. This wasn't a stand alone, but related to another discussion I had with someone. The context was missing. My bad. Sorry.
What I was trying to say here is it's bound to happen. I cannot say I would never miss or never fail to put the bullet exactly where it needed to be. I was being facetious when I said I might one day be a "little off the mark." I was acknowledging the distinct possibility that I might do exactly that some day. I wasn't trying to brag. What I mean is, I do my darndest to only shoot when I should and am sure of putting the round in the breadbasket, but there's always a chance of something going wrong and I might screw up. I haven't done so yet, but that doesn't mean it won't happen. In that case, I want to make sure if my round isn't exactly where it needs to be I have enough gun to help compensate for it. At the same time, I know if you're off too far, no amount of gun will be enough to do the job right.
This is all part of why I'm looking to you guys for feedback and the consensus seems to be, the .30-06 or like caliber would be a good pairing with my .35 Whelen. I want to choose my guns up front so I have plenty of time to practice in preparation for the trip. Whichever I go with, the .280 Remington or .30-06, I'm going to be doing a LOT of practice with that AND the .35 Whelen. I've been reading articles from PHs who all say to do so from sticks, sitting, kneeling, standing positions, etc, so you are well acquainted with your gun. I will be doing this out on my friend's land on various targets as is the case with deer. I use paper targets of animals set up in the woods at various distances and shoot from the ground, tree stand, etc. Especially in the case of an Africa hunt, there's too much at stake to leave it to luck, or worse, arrogance.
Apologize if what I wrote came off wrong. I didn't in anyway intend to sound boastful. Sorry for the incautious wording. :footinmouth: My humble apologies.
Hey no big. No apology necessary. Just trying to relate from personal experience how things tend to go! I fell into this trap before and have missed my share of game and just letting you know, it will happen if you shoot enough game. I used to shoot NRA Highpower and became a pretty good shot and was bragging to my PH about how good I was. Trouble is I was unable to really prove it that trip. My previous trip I had shot very well. If there is one thing I have learned in 57 years is that the minute I brag about something, I come up short. At least on one end!
That said, I actually DID miss an animal twice on my first hunt. But I found out why later. STUPID rookie mistake. I had sighted the rifle for 170 grain rounds. When I later went out on my prong horn hunt, I went out with 140 grains, completely forgetting to resight in the rifle. I clean missed two lovely prong horns. Watched the round on my second buck,which was at about 200 yards in a perfect broadside set up, kick up dirt just barely over the animal's back. I wondered what the heck? I knew I wasn't flinching. I finally took a third buck which was three quartering away from me at just under 300 yards. When I got out to him I found my round had hit him right in the back of the head and exited behind his left eye. Again, I thought, "What the hey?" I had been aiming on his shoulder. Being the rifle was zeroed for 200 yards I couldn't figure for the life of me how I managed to hit him so high. I had a steady platform, off my buddy's jeep's hood, and never flinched. THEN IT STRUCK ME! DUH!!!!
I had never resighted the rifle for the new, lighter rounds. I was putting out 30 grain lighter loads. NO WONDER I was shooting ten inches high! I was shooting downhill, which I failed to compensate for -- he was out on this long slope on the plains below me -- and when I looked up the numbers, found although they were both Federal Premium Partitioned bullet rounds, one was much lighter, and was bound to ride high. Boy did I feel dumb!
That was my first big game animal taken, over 25 years ago. I have never made such a foolish mistake again!
I missed one other time, and at only 50 yards. Found I had not seen the tree branches in between me and the target and the shot was deflected. It was a clean miss. Since those two mistakes, I have learned my lessons and haven't missed since. But it could certainly happen at any time.
I'm actually more of a pistol guy than rifle. I'm an instructor and specialize in defensive shooting for concealed carry permit seekers. But I hunt too. Have never gotten into bow. That really takes a lot of skill, just to be able to close in to within shooting distance. I'm still trying to round out my experience with rifle hunting. Africa is the ultimate as far as I'm concerned. I have to do this. I just want to do it right.
I'm confident with my abilities with the modest cartridges. The key is to stay calm. Then again, if you must make a quick shot, all that goes out the window. Luckily, so far I haven't had to make quick offhand shots. Mine were all ambushes from a still position. The animal never knew what hit it. In those cases where I wasn't confident of the shot, I didn't pull the trigger. That said, it's the Virginia woods. There's always next year. In a hunt all the way over there, I can see where the equation changes significantly. It's either a less than ideal shot, or nothing. All considerations which is why I will need to practice until I know the rifles I'm bringing inside and out. Being deadly with my .250 Savage won't mean a hill of beans when I'm using the .35 Whelen. Totally different ballistics.
A few years ago I dropped a maybe 100lb Coues deer at 400 yards lasered. When I say I dropped it, straight down without a twitch. Last year in Africa my first shot was at a 300-400 lb Nyala at 60 yards. One shot was enough, but it was right at the back of the lungs and just barely good enough. Go figure.
Originally Posted by sestoppelman
Real trophy Kudu's aren't called the grey ghosts for nothing. I've stumbled onto a fair few in the bush, and its amazing how they sometimes just stand under a tree and rely on their camo to hide them. Game-counting from the chopper you see them standing under a tree, not moving a muscle.
I don't have a lot of confidence in a .243 bullet when it comes to close range shots. Especially since a lot of the guys I know that swear by the .243 also swear by cheap-ass ammo.
My vote goes for the 30-06. 180gr core-bonded bullets for general purpose. If you're going hunting in think bush, maybe 200g, but there's mountains, stick to 180gr.
Thank you. Chuck another up for the .30-06.
Make no mistake - i respect successful kudu hunters ! Hunters confident in and knowing the capabilities of their rifles, 243, 270, 308, 30-06, 375 etc.etc. that goes after these 'grey ghosts'. I am not comparing the 270 with the 30-06 here, or any other calibers les than .30 - i am just seconding experience from a well known and respected hunter.
Gregor Woods - published an article a couple of moons ago in the Man / Magnum magazine in RSA on the 270's performance on game he hunted for decades in Africa. In his words of wisdom he stated: "but when hunting kudu bulls, this is where things started going wrong with the 270 performance"
I have in my years hunted many kudu / gemsbok with my 270, but i must agree that when it gets to broad-side shots on kudu bulls, i have experienced 'performance failures' and since then i have my doubts using the 270 on kudu bulls.
Personally, i will not take a lesser than .30 cal rifle with premium bullets to the hunt where kudu bulls are on the menu. And to second ILCAPO and DHARDING...my table is set with a 30-06 where it comes to the menu of the grey ghost bulls.
fhm3006. In my case, when hunting Kudu or Gemsbok, I'll be using something with a little more umphhh, just for good measure -- my .35 Whelen. As for the most appropriate load, I'll forward my spreadsheet of available loads (bullet types, with fps and ft/lbs at the muzzle) to my chosen PH for his advice. My understanding is bigger is better with these animals.
I'm just trying to decide which will be the second rifle I will bring. This is intended for such species as springbok, impala, warthog, wildebeest, blesbok and the like. I plan to build this on a pristine FN commercial Mauser action I have in my possession. Will it be a .280 Remington Ackley Improved, or a .30-06?
At this point, I don't think I could go wrong with either one. The concensus seems to be either will do, but the preponderance of opinions appears to lean in favor of the .30-06. Decisions! Decisions! : )
Just out of curiosity. I know I've seen women hunters in photographs. However, I'm just wondering if there are any women PHs who act as guides out there. Not that I am looking for one. I'm just curious if women get involved in that aspect of the business, or if they prefer to remain inside running the offices. ; )