9.3x74 or 405 Win for Lion

Discussion in 'Double Rifles' started by AZDAVE, Jun 4, 2014.

  1. AZDAVE

    AZDAVE AH Senior Member

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    Not sure if this is the area to post but since it is a double question here goes. Headed back next year for a Cape buff hunt for me an my old Army buddy, we are both taking 450NE doubles. Was planning on brining my 9.3 for plains game. Have my wife set for sable, gemsbok, and warthog, with her 275 rigby and a 9.3x62 mauser. Due to interest in a piece of property I own looks like I will possibly be able in include a lion on my safari. The 9.3 would normally get my vote but recently traded a couple nice shotguns for a 405WIN double. Both are very well regulated and I am comfortable with either. Out of respect to Teddy the 405 has historical draw. So my question to those that have hunted lion what would be your choice and why?
  2. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH Ambassador

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    Hi AZDAVE,

    I have not hunted lion but, since the other calibers you mentioned are in double rifle format , why just not use your .450 NE for lion?

    A .458 diameter / 480 gr RNSP, at about 2000 to 2100+ something fps, should be a real lion basher.

    Whatever you decide, the rest of us will live vicariously through your safari.

    Regards,
    Velo Dog.
    Areaonereal likes this.
  3. spike.t

    spike.t GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    i like your wifes selection .275 and 9.3x62 (y), as for whether to use the .405 or 9.3x74r for your lion.......if your .405 had been a 1895 winchester i would have said go with that for the teddy thing, but as its not i would go with the 9.3x74r simply as my double in that cal is my favourite rifle , and if you feel you want something bigger at the time you have your .450 so you are well covered.:) how about some photos of the 9.3 and .405 .
  4. AZDAVE

    AZDAVE AH Senior Member

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    Last year I took a really nice warthog and Zebra with my 450, am planning on a cape buff with it in May 2015. Haven't shot more than paper or steel with the 9.3 or 405 so kinda wanted to break it in on plains game of a lion if I am able to work that in. Here is a pick of the 9.3 Chapuis and Simson 405. IMG_4037.JPG IMG_4035.JPG
  5. spike.t

    spike.t GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    both nice looking rifles. could be you will have to toss a coin.....................:unsure:
  6. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    .405 Win, just for the history of the caliber.
  7. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH Ambassador

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    AZDAVE,

    OK, I totally get that.
    Therefore, I vote for the .405 caliber Simpson & Sohn.
    I like the looks of it over the sharper pistol gripped 9.3.......yes I'm that shallow.
    (Women are fun....pretty women are funner).

    Also, I applaud you for not wanting to take the King of Beasts (no, not Tarzan) with some metal flake blue plastic stocked, muzzle braked, fluted barrel, Flash Gordon galactic triple belted-reverse shoulder light-speed magnum, fastened to the bottom of The Hubble Telescope, by means of pot metal rail/extra high titanium rings, and a space-age fiber sling that has a GPS and video games in it, not to mention shooting laser guided projectiles that are serial numbered to the weapon.

    Regards,
    Velo Dog.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2014
  8. tarbe

    tarbe BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    For me, it would be about the bullet. Which caliber can you source the best "lion bullet" for?

    Neither of these calibers are swimming with choices, but one might have more appropriate choices than the other?

    I believe Swift, Barnes and Nosler all make 9.3mm.
  9. 35bore

    35bore AH Legend

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    I would tend to lean toward the 9.3, as much as the 405 is historic. I feel the 9.3 would get deeper penetration with similar bullets. Speaking of bullets, I did a quick search on google and tarbe is right, there are many more 9.3's available, even in factory loads. Plus the 9.3 has a bit of history in and of itself.
  10. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Both the lion and leopard don't need much in bullet toughness to knock them over dead.
    You are not aiming for the head, their rib cage in not that tough. And bullet like the Accubond will be just fine.
  11. 35bore

    35bore AH Legend

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    what Eric said +1
  12. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Being a fan of both these rounds, I see the conundrum. However that classy looking SXS .405 screams Africa! Bullet choices are limited in the .405 however..you have Hornadys, Woodleighs, and Barnes Tripleshock and a smattering of boutique bullets no doubt. No Noslers. I would feel comfortable with that .405 on lion. What type of bullet or loading does it prefer?
  13. AZDAVE

    AZDAVE AH Senior Member

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    The 405 shoots the Hornady factory and reloads with the same bullet 2rights and 2 lefts into 2 `1/2 in at 55 yards. I had a 1895 in 405 that was part of the trade for this double. Still have a 350gr bullet mold and can get similar performance with hard cast. I have ordered some woodleigh's and looking at trying the cutting edge solids and hollow points. (That is what I have my 450NE shooting) Have a good regulation load for barnes, northfork, 286gr and 250gr accubon's in the 9.3. I took a 9.3x74 TC encore last year to the eastern cape and it just anchored everything in one shot 50-310 yards. Would feel completely at ease with either on lion. Both rifles shot minute of lion. Think I will take them both to the range and just shoot steel from 50-200 yards and see which I miss with first:) Velo dog love your description of the current trend of wonder fuzz wizzled lazer lightning gad zooks magnaboomers!!! I am an electrical engineer by trade but grew up learning how to build fine furniture with hand tools and just love the feel of english walnut in the vise and a file or scraper in my hand. The only thing I have with a plastic/kevlar stock in my tactical zombie apocalypse 06 AI. I have till early next year to decide when I have to do the SAP paper work. Lucky my better half has her's set and ready to go. No how is that for a kick in the pants the lady has her decision done before the gent:)
  14. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Sounds like you have a real good shooting rifle that isn't as particular as many seem to be. You probably know the story of the Alaska bush pilot who in 1949 shot a monster brown bear near Cold Bay with a .405 at some distance mind you. Took 3 shots but he got the bear. And that was back in the day of non premium bullets! I have the article here someplace with pix of the bear. A real 'monsta'!

    I had Ruger No. 1's in both 74R and the .405 and both were excellent shooters. I now have a Miroku WInchester '95 in .405 that is about to make the jump with me to RSA in a few weeks time. My rifle prefers the Barnes ahead of Varget powder for about 2160 fps, just about what the Hornady factory load produces. I know the box says over 2200fps but my chronograph belies that.
  15. AZDAVE

    AZDAVE AH Senior Member

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    My crono tells the same story as yours. I have handloads at 2200-2210 and they shoot well to. I had a 1895 like yours but wanted this double more.

    Let us know how your hunt goes, would be very interested in your review of the barnes in the 405 on game. Have a great trip.
  16. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH Ambassador

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    AZDAVE,

    I can barely spell engineer but am nonetheless rumored to have a plastic/fiberglass stocked rifle (FAL) in my toy box, just in case.

    However, having your photos taken with a lion, while you hold some techno pimped-out "Burnworth Style" contraption, would be like wearing a NASCAR jacket, swim trunks, wingtip shoes, black knee socks and a baseball hat, in your daughter's wedding photos.
    Great minds think alike.
    Hand finished thin shell walnut and professionally done rust bluing makes me weak in the knees.

    Others have mentioned bullets.
    The PH that I have hunted the most with gets cold chills when clients start talking about Barnes monolithic type bullets for lion.
    He personally has shot a number of problem lion in The Kruger Park, primarily with a .30-06 and Hornady 220 gr RNSP at 2400 fps.
    He also likes the .375 H&H with 300 gr RNSP, also at 2400 fps.
    Copper alloy is pretty hard, compared to lead (you Engineer types know more about that than ten people like me do).

    In the .405, a velocity of 2200 FPS for thin skinned game begs for a semi-soft bullet.
    This is not to discount that lion might very well be the most dangerous 4 legged animal on dry land.
    Nonetheless, he is not super heavily built, compared to a buffalo, hippo or even a zebra for that matter.
    (Having never shot a lion, you can take my thoughts on the subject with a grain of salt).

    However it seems to me that these latest flex tip pointed bullets might be too much of a good thing, as they appear to have been designed for whitetail deer (soft target compared to lion, grizzly, etc).
    If Hornady makes their old fashioned RNSP in that caliber, I would be interested in shooting it into various test materials.
    But, more importantly I would do what you are doing and asking around for people's opinion who may have used this cartridge on lion or at least on similar sized animals.

    Lastly, it seems like the original 300 gr Woodleigh Weldcore RNSP would be a top choice.
    The blunt shape equates to it being half mushroomed before it even gets to the target.
    It is somewhat soft so should (theoretically) fully deform quickly on lion but, due to the bonding process, should also hold together, thereby driving the widely "mushroomed" bullet through.
    With that you should have a wide path of tissue, organ, nerve and blood vessel laceration and possibly an exit wound, (blood out-air in) depending on angle/bones hit or not hit, etc.

    In the 9.3, I have watched my best friend take a number of PG, including zebra and eland with the 286 gr Nosler Partition, in 2 safaris now (Ruger #1 and Simpson drilling coincidentally to your double).
    If I were after lion with that caliber, it seems to me the NP would be about perfect.
    The Woodeigh 286 gr seems like another good choice.
    Is the 9.3 legal for DG where you are going?
    Some countries have banned anything below .375 for lion and some have not.

    I look forward to hearing more about which rifle/projectile you settle on.

    Regards,
    Velo Dog.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2014
  17. AZDAVE

    AZDAVE AH Senior Member

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    I have sent a email to my PH to check and make sure a 9.3 is Ok or not for Lion. If not that make the choice easy.

    I have about 500 Prvi Partizan 286gr for my 9.3's so I might try and work a load for them and try them out on pigs as see how they hold together. I am looking forward to trying woodleigh's in both rifles.

    Since my shots will most likely be 50yards or under a nice round nose will be good. It will be fun getting everything ready.
  18. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH Ambassador

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    All of us double rifle fans will stand by for the result.
  19. flatwater bill

    flatwater bill AH Member

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    AZDave...I have shot about 200 Prvi Partizan bullets. Holding together has not been a problem. Getting ANY expansion has been a problem for me. The fastest were at 2414fps, but still often performed as a solid. My choice, the Hawk bullet in the 405. Cup and core bullets work great at 405 Win velocities, which have averaged about 2160 for me as well.......................FWB
  20. PeteG

    PeteG AH Veteran

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    AZDave, i'm with flatwater bill on the Partizan bullets, i have not had good experience with them. expansion was iffy, albeit in a 300wm, not a double in the calibers you mention.
    a friend has tried them in his 375 and 7x64 and he is also a bit unsure. so far they are practice rounds but we both look to buying norma, pmp or sako ammo for hunting.
    i would be interested to know how they work out in the doubles at slower speeds.

    on the other hand, as Velo Dog mentions, soft point quicker expanding bullets do pretty well on Lion.
    i would go the 286gr woodleigh in the 9,3 just because! (y)

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