Blaser R8 for Dangerous Game

Tra3

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Me too :)

I do not have that experience yet, but the physics of momentum say it should, assuming all other factors are more or less equivalent...

To continue with "Doctari" Robertson, he captures this in the following table:
View attachment 391621
K. Robertson. Africa's Most Dangerous, p. 135

The Woodleigh Weldcore RNSN (round nose soft nose) is a high quality bonded bullet with fairly thick jacket, not just a glued together cup & core like so many "bonded" bullets nowadays, so, like the AFrame, it has very high weight retention. Assuming that the RNSN and TSX both expand to about the same diameter and they both retain about the same weight percentage, and assuming they are both sent at typical speed for the weight, the 350 gr will out penetrate the 300 gr because of its significantly higher SD and higher momentum.

This being said, let us be clear: any quality 300 gr .375 H&H bullet (TSX, AFrame, Weldcore, etc.) has not only enough penetration for a shoulder/lungs/heart side shot on buff, but possibly too much. The discussion really is more relevant to follow up solids on run away rump shots.

View attachment 391630
K. Robertson. Africa's Most Dangerous, p. 126

And of course, we could not omit the famous conclusion:

View attachment 391623
K. Robertson. Africa's Most Dangerous, p. 136

Actually, the .375 H&H is even more of a one-rifle-safari rifle if you consider using two bullet weights and two scopes (to avoid confusion).

My own semi-weight .375 H&H R8 barrel wears:

--- one Leica ER i 2.5-10x42 with BDC ring custom engraved to the 300 gr TSX clocked in my barrel, and sighted with 300 gr TSX for any PG out to any reasonable hunting distance, and buffalo in herds. It also shoots very well faster-opening 300 gr Partition for cats;

--- one Leica Magnus i 1-6x24 sighted with 350 gr Woodleigh FMJ solid for elephant and hippo, and 350 gr Woodleigh RN SN (round-nose soft-nose) for hippo body shots - the RN SN and FMJ shoot to the same point of aim.

I am taking this second configuration as a backup to my K gun .470 for my trophy elephant hunt in Zim this coming August (in case a dream 60 pounders walks across an opening we cannot approach to less than 50 yards - yeah, I know, one can dream...). This would also be my first shot / follow up shots combination for dagga boy outside of a herd, should I not use the K gun.
For archery hunting I am a big proponent of high momentum arrows (heavy, more front of center weight). For rifle hunting so much is focused on muzzle energy to the exclusion of what happens at impact. We know that a .22-250 can get over 1500 ft/lbs of energy, but no one picks that to hunt bigger animals with, like elk. There is simply not enough momentum to push that bullet through.
I appreciate reading this post, in reminds me to worry less about muzzle energy and more about the right combination of weight and speed.
Which brings me to my question: why does the .257 weatherby kill so effectively? The momentum calculation includes speed, but bullet weight is more important in the math, right?
 

Tra3

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Here's a link to the video of me shooting the LW 375.
Let me know what you think.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/vZnznJ7qkCP1xAfA7
Looks like less recoil and less muzzle flip than the .416. How did it feel? How much weight do you put on the forend by pulling down?


Btw: what do others suggest for shooting a heavier recoiling rifle off the sticks? Do you pull down on the forend? Or just rest the rifle and try to add minimal weight from the front?
 

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I didn’t shoot it side by side with the 416.
Maybe on my next range trip...
However it felt quite similar in recoil impulse.
Not pulling down at all on the front, just resting on it.

I will say that it has me rethinking my PH 416.
It is possible that I could sell it...
Not positive at this point, but definitely considering it.
 

BeeMaa

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For archery hunting I am a big proponent of high momentum arrows (heavy, more front of center weight). For rifle hunting so much is focused on muzzle energy to the exclusion of what happens at impact. We know that a .22-250 can get over 1500 ft/lbs of energy, but no one picks that to hunt bigger animals with, like elk. There is simply not enough momentum to push that bullet through.
I appreciate reading this post, in reminds me to worry less about muzzle energy and more about the right combination of weight and speed.
Which brings me to my question: why does the .257 weatherby kill so effectively? The momentum calculation includes speed, but bullet weight is more important in the math, right?
I would say the amount of energy at the point of impact is extremely important. The ability of a bullet (and it’s construction) to drive through an animal is a factor of velocity squared x mass. This is why speed is so important to energy. Now the construction of the bullet takes over. Can it do it’s job without shattering into pieces due to too much speed? Or act like a solid and not expand because it’s moving too slowly.

Like you said, it’s a combination of factors that have to line up. Modern materials and manufacturing processes have made many gains, but the lessons of the past still apply. Bigger game = bigger caliber.

Personally, for Elk I’d consider 7mmRM as a minimum with 300WM being preferred. This is a personal choice based on the energy levels at typical distances I’d expect to be shooting at.
 

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I have installed two of the three stock spacers to lengthen the LOP and added a knurled steel bolt knob on the new R8. Big thanks to Top Dog Guns Global for having those items shipped out to me ASAP. Total weight is now 3500 grams (7 lbs 11 oz) without a scope. I will be taking it to the range tomorrow afternoon for a few shots using the irons at 50 yards and 300 grain PPU ammo. Full report and possibly a video to follow.
I have bought quite a bit of stuff from Mark at Top Dog. He has lots of inventory and can get anything one would want as far as R8's and scopes etc.
 

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While energy is important, momentum, according to Robertson, is the most important factor in hunting thick skinned dangerous game. It appears that of two bullets of equal energy, the heaver and slower is preferred for DG.
 

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I have bought quite a bit of stuff from Mark at Top Dog. He has lots of inventory and can get anything one would want as far as R8's and scopes etc.
Van is at Top Dog Guns Global
Mark is at Mad Dog Guns
I know they used to work together, but not anymore.

I’ve bought stuff from both of them.
Really good guys.
 

Aussie_Hunter

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Oh yes the good old bullet weight and SD debate!
I also have this debate going on in my head right now, will I use 600 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2200fps or 535 grain Swift A-frames at 2370fps out of my 500 Jeffery for my buffalo hunt later this year? I am yet to decide.............
 

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Oh yes the good old bullet weight and SD debate!
I also have this debate going on in my head right now, will I use 600 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2200fps or 535 grain Swift A-frames at 2370fps out of my 500 Jeffery for my buffalo hunt later this year? I am yet to decide.............
Either would get the job done easily with a proper shot.
Personally, I'd choose the one that shoots more accurately.
It's that first shot placement that really counts.
 

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New rifle all dressed up and ready to hunt.
4632 grams (10 lbs 3 oz)
1614962912863.png
 

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Me too :)

I do not have that experience yet, but the physics of momentum say it should, assuming all other factors are more or less equivalent...

To continue with "Doctari" Robertson, he captures this in the following table:
View attachment 391621
K. Robertson. Africa's Most Dangerous, p. 135

The Woodleigh Weldcore RNSN (round nose soft nose) is a high quality bonded bullet with fairly thick jacket, not just a glued together cup & core like so many "bonded" bullets nowadays, so, like the AFrame, it has very high weight retention. Assuming that the RNSN and TSX both expand to about the same diameter and they both retain about the same weight percentage, and assuming they are both sent at typical speed for the weight, the 350 gr will out penetrate the 300 gr because of its significantly higher SD and higher momentum.

This being said, let us be clear: any quality 300 gr .375 H&H bullet (TSX, AFrame, Weldcore, etc.) has not only enough penetration for a shoulder/lungs/heart side shot on buff, but possibly too much. The discussion really is more relevant to follow up solids on run away rump shots.

View attachment 391630
K. Robertson. Africa's Most Dangerous, p. 126

And of course, we could not omit the famous conclusion:

View attachment 391623
K. Robertson. Africa's Most Dangerous, p. 136

Actually, the .375 H&H is even more of a one-rifle-safari rifle if you consider using two bullet weights and two scopes (to avoid confusion).

My own semi-weight .375 H&H R8 barrel wears:

--- one Leica ER i 2.5-10x42 with BDC ring custom engraved to the 300 gr TSX clocked in my barrel, and sighted with 300 gr TSX for any PG out to any reasonable hunting distance, and buffalo in herds. It also shoots very well faster-opening 300 gr Partition for cats;

--- one Leica Magnus i 1-6x24 sighted with 350 gr Woodleigh FMJ solid for elephant and hippo, and 350 gr Woodleigh RN SN (round-nose soft-nose) for hippo body shots - the RN SN and FMJ shoot to the same point of aim.

I am taking this second configuration as a backup to my K gun .470 for my trophy elephant hunt in Zim this coming August (in case a dream 60 pounders walks across an opening we cannot approach to less than 50 yards - yeah, I know, one can dream...). This would also be my first shot / follow up shots combination for dagga boy outside of a herd, should I not use the K gun.
Thats why I settled on 340gr Rhinos in my one 375 and 300 gr in the other....they 380gr is a buffalo sledgehammer
 

IvW

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Oh yes the good old bullet weight and SD debate!
I also have this debate going on in my head right now, will I use 600 grain Woodleigh PPSN at 2200fps or 535 grain Swift A-frames at 2370fps out of my 500 Jeffery for my buffalo hunt later this year? I am yet to decide.............
570gr will do all you need and you can push it to 2450 if you can handle it but 2250-2300 will kill them all.....
 

Christot

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I would say the amount of energy at the point of impact is extremely important. The ability of a bullet (and it’s construction) to drive through an animal is a factor of velocity squared x mass. This is why speed is so important to energy. Now the construction of the bullet takes over. Can it do it’s job without shattering into pieces due to too much speed? Or act like a solid and not expand because it’s moving too slowly.

Like you said, it’s a combination of factors that have to line up. Modern materials and manufacturing processes have made many gains, but the lessons of the past still apply. Bigger game = bigger caliber.

Personally, for Elk I’d consider 7mmRM as a minimum with 300WM being preferred. This is a personal choice based on the energy levels at typical distances I’d expect to be shooting at.
Weight (effective density) is the driving factor concerning penetration if everything else is unchanged (which is mostly not as bullets deform). There's a Poncelet-equation (an approximation) which provids more insights but there's a bit math to be understood.
A simplified explanation for fluids can give you a first impression about the general principals:
 

Aussie_Hunter

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570gr will do all you need and you can push it to 2450 if you can handle it but 2250-2300 will kill them all.....
570 grain at 2450 is a bit much for I shoot the 535 grain and 600 grain loads mentioned well.
 

BeeMaa

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Shooting the light weight R8 in 375, it has sparked some discussion between Mrs BeeMaa and my self. To be specific, I have suggested the possibility of selling my PH Safari (steel receiver & kickstop) R8 in 416RM. The debate centers around how many times do we really believe we will hunt Africa and more specifically, game that would suggest using a 416 (versus a 375), for example Elephant. I believe that if (and that's a big "if") we were to hunt Elephant, it would only be once. I know I can't look into the future about such things, but that is why I'm asking what the membership here thinks. Disclamer - I do believe the PH Safari weighted stock in 416, although heavy, is the correct weight for this caliber and up. Shooting 416 and above for me requires a little more heft in the rifle.

Does a (possible) one time Elephant hunt justify keeping a 416 in the vault or should I put it on the auction block for someone else to enjoy and take the 375?
 

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Shooting the light weight R8 in 375, it has sparked some discussion between Mrs BeeMaa and my self. To be specific, I have suggested the possibility of selling my PH Safari (steel receiver & kickstop) R8 in 416RM. The debate centers around how many times do we really believe we will hunt Africa and more specifically, game that would suggest using a 416 (versus a 375), for example Elephant. I believe that if (and that's a big "if") we were to hunt Elephant, it would only be once. I know I can't look into the future about such things, but that is why I'm asking what the membership here thinks. Disclamer - I do believe the PH Safari weighted stock in 416, although heavy, is the correct weight for this caliber and up. Shooting 416 and above for me requires a little more heft in the rifle.

Does a (possible) one time Elephant hunt justify keeping a 416 in the vault or should I put it on the auction block for someone else to enjoy and take the 375?
My 2c - Keep the .416 UNTIL you have hunted elephant. Then decide.. It may be like most of us, "I'm going on my ONLY hunt to Africa" then before you know it you are on your 6th safari. It shouldn't go down in value sitting in your safe.
 

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Selling a rifle before you lived your dream? You spent the money already and if you don't need it urgently I don't see a good reason selling it. You only live once and you can't take your money to the last journey.
 

BeeMaa

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Selling a rifle before you lived your dream? You spent the money already and if you don't need it urgently I don't see a good reason selling it. You only live once and you can't take your money to the last journey.
Trust me, I get it.
That's why I asked and I appreciate your opinion.
 

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I’d say give yourself time to decide, multiple range trips, and some tinkering. Have you swapped barrels and put the .375 on your PH stock? The decision will become apparent with more use. Mrs. BeeMa’s input will be helpful, she seems rational and pragmatic.
 

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New rifle all dressed up and ready to hunt.
4632 grams (10 lbs 3 oz)
View attachment 391785
This exact rifle in either that configuration or the "classic" walnut stock (essentially the same weight) has become my do everything African rifle. It carries like a PG rifle, is spectacularly accurate, seemingly bomb proof, and with ergonomics that enhance target acquisition and mitigate its already very manageable recoil. A very special thing.
 

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