Best bullet for Cape Buffalo

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by colorado, May 13, 2013.

  1. Bushstalker

    Bushstalker AH Member

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    Enysse, I still think... and I'm probably "oldfashion" that a meplated or flatnose solid bullet will change direction less than a sharp nosed bullet, fallow up shots on buffalo is nearly never clear from some kind of vegetation as you know.
  2. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    My personal opinion is that if I had to take a frontal shot on an elephant or Cape buffalo I'd prefer a flat nose bullet too. And I feel a bullet with a flat nose is less likely to hit and turn 90 degree too. I have had the old Barnes X bullets hit a major bone and switch directions because they didn't deform easy enough.
  3. matt85

    matt85 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    If the 400gr TSX moving at 2300 fps deflects off some grass or fails to get adequate penetration on the buffalo then I will come back here and warn others not to use them. So far every single one of the negative reviews and stories related to Barnes bullets are talking about the old X bullet. Before you jump on me saying "beware what you read in articles" I'm talking about buyers reviews and fellow hunters here in WA , not magazine reviews. I have no stock in Barnes nor do they pay me to say nice things about their bullets. I am simply repeating what I've been told by many hunters who use them. to be honest I prefer a lead bullet such as the Swift A-frame and would probably like north fork bullets but cant ever bring myself to pay the high price they are asking. the main reason I'm trying the TSX bullet on buffalo is because I trust my PH and he's a big fan of the bullet for these animals (and others).

    Improvement: (noun) the act of improving something : the act or process of making something better : the quality of being better than before : an addition or change that makes something better or more valuable.

    -matt
  4. edward

    edward AH Veteran

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    not trying to be a smart ass,but the price you pay for a wounded and lost animal because you scrimped on bullets,is quite costly as well as your safari.bullets are cheap insurance.
    PHOENIX PHIL likes this.
  5. matt85

    matt85 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    by no stretch of the imagination are Barnes TSX or Swift A-frames cheap! they are both premium bullets with strong reputations for success.

    -matt
  6. edward

    edward AH Veteran

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    the comment was made as to the Cost of the bullets!
  7. matt85

    matt85 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    its true one shouldn't go cheap on bullets especially since a safari is so expensive. however, I don't believe in running out and buying the most expensive bullet you can find. one should do a great deal of research and some personal testing before he/she decides on a bullet.

    prices of common premiums: (give or take a couple dollars)
    North Fork .416" 400gr soft point = $110 for 50
    CEB Raptor .416 370gr non-con = $81 for 50
    Swift A-Frame .416" 400gr soft point = $67 for 50
    Barnes TSX .416" 400gr hollow point = $60 for 50

    depending on who you talk to on this forum they will tell you one of the above bullets is the best (im a Swift fan). there are also some other South African bullets which some swear by but I didn't mention them cause they are tricky to get in the USA. I used .416" since that just happens to be what ive been looking for at the moment but the above brands will do fine in just about any caliber.

    note: I left Woodleighs out of the list because I believe that are a bit soft. but ive been told they work great at slower velocities.

    -matt
  8. Bushstalker

    Bushstalker AH Member

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    Improvement, thanks for the explanation.... I'm not a "besserwisser" but if you mean that when Hornady decide to cutting a couple of groves/lines to reduce barrel fouling and put a plastic tip is a big -improvement- from the old X bullet, I can only say that the TXS bullet and the X is made on the same principle, it is a hollow point copper bullet and nothing ells, probably is the .416 TXS with that Polymer Tipped Boat Tail designed for long range purpose, suitable for a 416 Barrett for target or law enforcement & Military.

    Photo when 4 of 9 TXS bullets are bended and curved.... is a warning to consider before load it for large boned bovines. tn_DSCN1420.JPG
  9. PHOENIX PHIL

    PHOENIX PHIL AH Legend

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    Between copper fouling and pics like this I've seen in the past is why I've moved away from the Barnes offerings. The pics here do seem to be of medium bores, 7mm or .308 I'm guessing. Is that correct Bushstalker?

    I've never seen pics or read of failures to expand in .375 or larger.
  10. matt85

    matt85 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    those pictures are indeed interesting! I haven't seen failures like that before in the new TSX but it does make me question the bullets effectiveness.

    thanks for sharing those pictures.

    -matt
  11. Bushstalker

    Bushstalker AH Member

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    Yes Phil, they are from .30 cal and if the .375 bullet is too massive to be able to bend... I do not know. Anyhow a buffalo standing like this I would be glad to have a NF Cup or a meplat nose profile solid brass bullet in the chamber, definitely nothing that can expand or change direction.


    Varna-20140706-01222.jpg
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2014
  12. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    I think that is why they came up with the TTSX, to initiate expansion.

    I agree with Matt, Swift A Frame is a premium bullet.
  13. matt85

    matt85 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    bushstalker, what were those 9 bullets fire into? was it game or test media, if media what kind?

    thanks
    -matt
  14. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH Fanatic

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    Bushstalker,

    Thank you for the photos.
    You make an excellent point with them.
    The PH that I have hunted the most with prefers that people not use such bullets for the exact reason you describe.
    Plus, he says they tend to bend at the tip like that more often than not, when hitting a muddy animal at less than a near perfectly flat angle, then of course being bent shut, they cannot expand properly.

    For a premium soft he likes A-Frame (used to like Bear Claw as well but can hardly get them now) and for a solid, he likes monolithics with a flat tip ("meplat" shape).
    I do not know if he has tried North Fork bullets yet but I will guess that he would like them.
    For an easy to get antelopes/pigs bullet, he likes Hornady RNSP in the heaviest weight they make for whatever caliber one is shooting (175 grain 7mm, 220 grain .30, 300 grain .375, etc).

    Cheers,
    Velo Dog.
  15. Bushstalker

    Bushstalker AH Member

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    Velo Dog,
    Yes, for softs in .416 I have also use the Hornady RNSP (400 gr) for many years, it shooting with exactly the same impact with the same load as the 400 gr super solid brass from Barnes, and for softer game "no buffalo" its a great and trustful bullet. Your PH and I speak the same language, perhaps you can introduce me to him !! :)

    Matt, those Barnes bullets is impact in clay 10 meter behind the paper target.

    My best,
    Bushstalker
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2014
  16. matt85

    matt85 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Enthusiast

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    thanks Bushstalker.

    by the way, i too share your love for the RNSP bullets! i used to have a 7x57 mauser (winchester M70) that i used Hornady 175gr RNSP bullets for and performance was very good on paper and critters. i still dont understand why Hornady discontinued its 7mm and 6.5mm RNSP bullets...

    -matt
  17. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH Fanatic

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    Hi again Bushstalker,

    Yes, that is no problem.

    His name is Hannes Swanepoel.

    He lives about 25 km from Gravellotte , Limpopo District, South Africa.

    Email: big5game@worldonline.co.za

    One of his camps is in the Highveld, above 7,000 ft and I do not believe he has email contact up there in the mountains but, he will return your email when he gets back down to the Lowveld and finds a few minutes between his lodge activities some evening.

    Therefore if you email him be patient, it is hunting season but, he will eventually email you back in a few days.

    Cheers,
    Velo Dog (Paul).
  18. Bushstalker

    Bushstalker AH Member

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    Thank you Velo Dog, I will managing a game farm in Eastern Cape from August and will also visit some game auctions up in Limpopo, so I will send send him a e-mail.


    Best regards,
    Buchstaker, (Michael)
  19. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH Fanatic

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    Bushstalker (Michael),

    You are welcome and if you get time to visit Mahlahla in person, I know Hannes and the crew will be pleased to meet you.

    Hannes and the other PHs who work for him are all rifle nuts.

    Managing an African Game Farm?, I am jealous.

    Of course, please tell Hannes, John and Roelof that I said "Hallo".

    Cheers,
    Velo Dog (Paul).
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2014
  20. Bushstalker

    Bushstalker AH Member

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    Thank's Velo Dog (Paul) I will for sure send the greeting from you !

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