Woodleigh vs Hornady

Discussion in 'Firearms & Ammunition' started by zephyr, Jun 23, 2011.

  1. zephyr

    zephyr AH Member

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    Currently shooting Woodliegh 480grn softs and solids out of my 1905 Gibbs 450 3 1/4NE, but have not shot anything bigger than a pig with this load. The gun and I are going to Zim for Buffalo and Tuskless and I am thinking of trying Hornady's DGX and DGS bullets as they appear to be of stouter construction. Would someone with field experience with these bullets please toss some advice my way as whether I should stay with the Woodlieghs are go with the Hornadys
    Thanks
  2. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    I would stick with the Woodleigh softs and solid...they are proven bullets.
  3. James.Grage

    James.Grage GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Zephyr

    I used Hornady 450 NE 3 1/4" last year both DGS & DGX for cape buffalo...

    First buffalo was dead on it feet with the first shot and PH had me put in followups to make sure the bugger was dead. shot at about 40 yards

    Second Buffalo was hit hard and we followed up and the 450 NE Solids blew holes right through the buffalo. He looked like a pin cussion and again the PH had me put in a follow up shot...shot at about 100 yards...and then 15 feet...bugger just stood there and let me fill him with holes...

    In fact i am purchasing more Hornady ammo for other rifles ... these performed very well...
  4. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    For the record, I really like Hornady ammunition, it's super affordable, accurate and has worked very well for me. It's just that I think the Woodleigh are fine too and wouldn't change unless it shot poorly through my rilfe. Because accuracy is super important.
  5. .416 Rigby

    .416 Rigby AH Member

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    Considering what safaris cost these days (as well as funerals), price should not be a consideration when selecting DG ammunition. Woodleighs are bonded, Hornadys are not. That is important. Shoot both in your rifle to see which prints closest to the point of aim. Chronograph both as well. If both perform equally well, I would select the bonded Woodleighs over the non bonded Hornadys.
  6. richteb

    richteb AH Enthusiast

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    I used Woodleighs in my 375 and 416 and found that they worked very well. Also met another hunter who shot a wilderbeast with his 375 ruger using 300 gn Dgx ammo. Took him 5 shots to kill it. Showed us a couple of the recovered projectiles and all where in missing copper jackets and had broken into pieces.
  7. classicsafari

    classicsafari AH Enthusiast

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    +1 with the softs but not sure if it matters which one in the Fmj.
  8. PaulT

    PaulT AH Fanatic

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    I've been using Hornaday factory loaded 458 Lott (500gn), both D.G.S and D.G.X, for the last three seasons and am very pleased with the results.

    Even at Lott velocity, and even at close range, the softs perform admirably on buffalo.

    The solids are very good and are my preference over the Woodleigh solids.

    I have no way of proving it, measuring it or quantifying it but the semi-flat nose (meplat) on the Solids appears to transfer energy to the target better than standard round noses.
    This is my opinion only, based on my observations.

    I could chronical anecdotes of several dozen buffalo I have taken, most in extremely poor shooting oportunities/circumstances and have yet to be dissapointed with these bullets.

    For buff I would use the softs backed up with some solids, and for "phunts.... solids all the way !
  9. .416 Rigby

    .416 Rigby AH Member

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    It does matter. A non-bonded solid which strikes heavy bone can have the lead core squeeze out from the base of the bullet like toothpaste from a tube. Have seen it happen.
  10. drew416

    drew416 AH Senior Member

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    At least Woodleigh print on their boxes sectional density, ballistic coefficient, and recommended impact velocities. Which they assure us are arrived at after countless field testings.

    This is a 400gn Woodleigh .416 Round Nose Weldcore. Fired out of a .416 Rem Mag at a Cape Buffalo. At 10m from the muzzle it's doing an average of 2350fps, with my rifle and load. Buff was shot at about 15m through the second rib back from the off side shoulder. Bullet was recovered in the on side shoulder bone. He moved a full body length from where he was shot to where he fell. Bullet was 385gn after all the bone and sinew was cleaned out of it. Some say the bullet should have exited but I'll ask him the question "did it hurt" when he comes back from the taxidermist.

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    Last edited: Sep 23, 2013
  11. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog AH Fanatic

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    Hello fellow Bullet Examiners and Shade Tree Forensic Pathologists De Los Animales,

    I've only shot one buffalo (shown next to my screen name) and so, do not claim to be anything but a beginner at DG hunting.

    My Army & Navy .450 No2 Nitro 3.5" regulates best with the Hndy 480 gr DGX and DGS @ 2050 fps (shot through a chronograph).

    I know that's 125 fps below what Eley Bros / Kynoch always claimed for their ammo in that cartridge but, either they were puffing (AKA false advertising) back in the day, or my rifle was not regulated for their ammo.

    I suspect the former is closer to the truth.

    Whatever the case may be, it regulates scary well and good, with the specs I described, and although the Woodleighs regulated pretty good, the Hornadys consistently shot measurably tighter groups than with Woodleighs, by about half.

    Buffalo:
    I shot my beast in the throat at 30 to 40 paces with the DGX soft and dropped him instantly but he was thrashing on the ground.

    Couldn't shoot again immediately because the herd was busy thundering past him on both sides, trying to get back across the river and into The Kruger Park.

    He was up and running with them soon, so when none were in my line of fire, I slammed his right flank with the DGS solid and he again dropped to the shot, this time quite dead.

    We recovered the soft a bit behind one shoulder, basically "mushroomed" but a small amount of the nose shed and I have kept it as a conversation piece.

    The solid passed through 3 feet or so of gut and such, then smashing the spine between the shoulders and that bullet is still in Africa.

    The shank of the soft traveled a long way and would've been quite fatal by itself, but the animal was not ready to agree with that immediately.

    Zebra:
    Also, I shot a Burchell's zebra with that rifle and the 480 grain DGX at 2050 fps, from about 30 to 40 paces (coincidence to the buffalo distance but, shots are quite often up close in The Lowveld), while said stallion was quartering toward me.

    I shot him on the shoulder but he didn't drop to the shot like the bovine did from the one in the throat.

    El zebra nearly fell on his chin but recovered and dashed a few yards, on 3 legs with his herd (couldn't give him my 2nd barrel because of the others running with him).

    He rammed into a thorn tree, falling quite dead right there.

    That bullet smashed the shoulder and tore through the heart / lungs, stopping as a visible lump under the skin and with a sharp edge of the jacket protruding slightly through, enough to cut my finger when I pressed on it, (off-side ribs).

    I have shot at no other animals with this rifle and I am positive these two animals taken with the Hornady DGX and DGS bullets is nowhere near a conclusive test.

    Fact is, perhaps I was just lucky to get such great performance from such simple bullets.

    Be that as it may, I am very happy with the performance.

    I know there are far tougher bullets on the market today but at old time velocity, the old technology JSP and FMJ seem to be about right for my pre-war cartridges and their pre-war velocities.

    Besides, I'm nervous about shooting reinforced bullets through my expensive antique rifle.

    If you are to read very much in this forum about Hornady bullets, AKA: "cup and core bullets" (like that's a combination of dirty words or something) you'd think my aforementioned 3 shots fired from my old .450 No2, would have bounced off the buffalo and the zebra, leaving both animals to roll around in the African dirt and grass, holding their tummies with their front hooves, uncontrollably shrieking with laughter at me.

    I've had excellent results with the older/original Hndy RNSP from other calibers on other species, in N. America, to include Alaska where I live, as well as several species of non-dangerous African game, in some cases, multiple animals taken within the same species, over my 4 safaris (3 of which I used with great satisfaction, Hornady round nose bullets).

    Not to worry, in a modern steel bolt action for DANGEROUS GAME, such as a proper Mauser (or modern steel single shot, such as the Ruger #1), I believe there is no finer expanding bullet FOR MY DG NEEDS (not necessarily your needs for your super-galactic 10 million feet per sec / death velocity over-bore magnum), than the Swift A-Frame and no better solid for my needs than almost any of today's monolithic solids.

    In antique doubles I plan to continue using the Hndy RN softs and solids and the newer DG series seems pretty good so far.

    I think the jacket material is actually soft steel on the DGX and DGS, instead of the older series Hndy bullets with guilding metal (can be brittle on impact).

    In other rifles, on non dangerous game, I plan to continue using Hndy RNSP as well since they have never let me down at the tame velocities I always use them at.

    All my best,
    Velo Dog.
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2014
  12. Jaco Strauss

    Jaco Strauss AH Elite

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    Also seen this, i have experienced them bending - aswell as fish tailing in elle skulls, and because of this deviate of path...

    I like monolithic brass solids, with it being tuff to pick up Barnes, i have jumped on the dzumbo monolitics .....hard to beat the frontal bullet diameter of those flat nosed brass solids..... they pack a punch....

    I use the 550gr woodleighs and love them they perform and have performed well, on loads that the late Ken Stewart helped me formulate..
    For pg the hornady's are fine.

    My best always
    Velo Dog likes this.
  13. Shumba Safaris

    Shumba Safaris AH Senior Member

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    I agree with you Jaco , the Hornady bullets have given me non satisfactory performance on thick skinned game. I recently had a hunter arrive with his 416 Rigby loaded with Woodleigh hydros. They performed flawlessly on both his Buffaloes. Good Bullets.

    Happy hunting
  14. Norwegianwoods

    Norwegianwoods SILVER SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    I have not tested big bore Woodleigh bullets. Only in 30 caliber and smaller.
    I have tested a few different calibers with Hornady bullets, including my 375 Ruger.
    In general I did not get as good accuracy with the Woodleigh bullets as I get with with Hornady bullets. Usually I get great accuracy with Hornady. Both factory ammo and when I reload.
    But I don't think 1-2" in accuracy difference matter so much in a DG rifle.

    When it comes to solids for DG, I would only use mono-metal bullets.
    I have only read good reviews and experiences when it comes to the Hydro mono-metal bullets from Woodleigh.
    CEB also have a bullet that seems to have great results.
    If I was to use a soft point bullet on Buffs, I would use Swift A-frame.

    Personally I will just fill my 375 Ruger with Barnes TTSX bullets if I am going to hunt Buffs, but if an Elephant is on the menu, I would use a mono-metal from Woodleigh or CEB.

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