Solids for Dangerous Game: what do you use and why?

matt85

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ive heard a few different theories on solids used for dangerous game and the types of solids available has grown greatly. from the old steel wrapped bullets of our grandfathers to monometal flat nosed banded brass bullets all of which are currently used in Africa and other countries to stop large and dangerous game. all still in use have been proven to work (or they wouldnt still be used) but for various reasons we choose to use different types.

seeing as we now have many more options these days id like to hear more about what people are using and why they are using them. also, do you prefer lighter faster bullets or heavier and slower bullets?

-weight?
-diameter?
-shape? (EX: round nose flat base)
-material? (EX: lead wrapped in steel, solid copper, solid brass, etc)
-velocity?
-maker? (EX: Nosler, barnes, Hornady, etc)

why do you use this bullet? (preferably more detail then just that "you like it")

thanks
-matt
 

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Matt,
Did you ever get a hold of those 600gr Peregrines for the .505Gibbs? I'm about to order some Peregrine 570gr Brass solids for the 500N.E. Think it's the VRG-2 if I'm not mistaken.
Then for soft, I'm going to be looking at Rhino softs, which are also locally made, but lead core. Had exceptional performance out of their softs in the .416Rigby on a Giraffe bull.
 

Petrus Geldenhuys

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-weight - 480gr, wanted to use the 500gr but my double regulates better with the 480gr
-diameter - .458 that i shoot out of my .450 N.E
-shape- Flat Nose, Boat Tail. Flat nose is great for straight line penetration!
-material- Solid Copper
-velocity- 2150 ft/s
-make - Peregrine VRG-2

We've had great success with them and the nice part is that they produce a soft point that looks exactly the same and shoots on the same spot as the BC's are matched.

This pic is the solid
VRG2sch.jpg


This pic is the soft
VRG3sch.jpg
 

matt85

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Matt,
Did you ever get a hold of those 600gr Peregrines for the .505Gibbs?

yep, the results have been great so far with some basic load testing. havent checked velocity yet but if its respectable (2100+ fps) and the accuracy is consistent then the peregrine 600gr VRG2 will become the standard solid for my Gibbs. the jury is still out on the 600gr VRG3 bushmaster replacing my 570gr A-frames. id have to shoot a few things with the VRG3 and see how it performs on critters first.

-matt
 

Panielsen

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I'm still using Hornady DGS in my .458 Win Mag, 500gr moving at 2100+ FPS. Looking at Cutting edge solids as I am playing with the Raptors now. Loading the 500gr Raptor to between 2050-2100 FPS with those. If results are good may switch to the solids as well. Let you know for sure once my Buff is in the salt.
 

edward

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in my double and in my scope sighted encore handgun i like and use the 286 gr woodliegh stabilized hydro static solid.9.3x74r cal.
deep penetration,unbelievable internal damage in dangerous game and also in thin skinned animals.one bullet for both types of game.i took an oryx at 129 yards and had complete pass through.entire left shoulder had to be thrown away because of damage.on my cape buff bull at 60 yards complete pass through the left shoulder.bull went 40 yards at best and gave us two death bellows.p h had me do an insurance shot and that was also a complete pass through.behind his left shoulder and out his right boss.thats my choice and reasons.

003 (2).JPG
 
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matt85

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thanks guys

@Panielsen how has your experience been with the .458" 500gr DGS in you 458 WM? how is the performance on game?

@edward i was hoping someone would post about those cup solids. North Fork also makes a version of these out of copper that i did some load testing in the past on. i didnt have much luck but i also didnt test them as much as i should have. i would think that this type of bullet would be ideal for hippo on land or as follow up shots for elephant and buffalo. these bullets supposedly penetrate much like a standard solid but do more damage which in my line of thinking would make them ideal for fleeing animals.

-matt
 

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Matt,
I haven't used the Hornady DGS 500 grain 458 Lott yet on Dangerous Game. As you know I had it with me on the elephant hunt and I was ready to use it if needed.
My 416 Ruger Guide Gun did the trick with the Hornady DGS 400 grain flat nose bullet. I think they move at 2300 feet per second if not mistaken.
Now I use them because they have worked for me on previous buffalo/lioness hunt. Results seen in other threads. I'm no expert on bullets and everybody on here knows that. I bought two dangerous game rifles because I like their looks and feel and in one case unless you are set up to reload as you are Matt there is only one choice. 400 grain DGS 416 Ruger below recovered from elephant head.
image.jpg
 

zephyr

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Choose CEB bullets for my last African hunt. I shot my Tuskless Ele with my 1905 Gibbs in 450 NE using 480gr solids loaded at 2150fps also had 450gr Raptors at 2180 (same POI). Choose the CEB bullets as they are a Bore riding Bullet and the pressure data I saw made them the most friendly for older Doubles. Shot my Ele with a frontal brain shot, she was slightly downhill inside 20yards bullet exited along the spine behind the shoulder and for all I know it is still moving.
My Buff was shot with my 400H&H CEB was able to spin me .411 dia 400gr solids and 370 gr Raptors the 400gr solid was pushing 2400fps+ and the 370 Raptor at 2460fps (same POI). The Buff shot was a frontal at 40yrds, bullet center punched the heart the bull traveled approx 70yrds and called it quits, the body of the bullet was found in the rumen.
If I had any complaints it would be that these flat nose bullets will start to fall out of the sky after 150yrds, They also might not be the bullet of choice if you find yourself shooting in a herd as they have a tendency to over penetrate. Rumor has it that some of these flat nose bullets have had feeding problems in bolt guns, I believe this to be more of a rifle problem then a bullet problem. Have not experienced this with my Win mod 70's.
I am presently planning another trip, a possible Buff and Eland hunt would take CEB bullets but thinking of the North Fork .411 dia 360gr Soft for my 400H&H and honest 250yrd bullet that I can use for both animals with a CEB 400gr solid as a back up..
Not quite sure if this is what you are looking for.
 

zephyr

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I'm still using Hornady DGS in my .458 Win Mag, 500gr moving at 2100+ FPS. Looking at Cutting edge solids as I am playing with the Raptors now. Loading the 500gr Raptor to between 2050-2100 FPS with those. If results are good may switch to the solids as well. Let you know for sure once my Buff is in the salt.
I believe the combo for the 458 win tha CEB is encouraging is the 450gr solid and the 420 Raptor.
'Give them a call...
Good Shooting
 

edward

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this is the woodlieghs at 50 yards out of my double.upper is right barrel,lower is left.i perfer to be as close as i can on dangerous game. at 25 yards this group would be half the size that your looking at.im more interested in penetration than a tackhole bullet.never saw an animal that would let me do a three shot group in him to see how tight my group was.my opinion is this bullet will give you a very good chance at the desired one shot kill.just my opinion.

001 (3).JPG
 
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matt85

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@edward i agree that perfect accuracy isnt needed for close range DG hunting. the load i used on my recent buff hunt couldnt do better then around 1" at 50 yards but it did a fine job killing the buffalo. BUT if better accuracy comes along with a different load then i will choose the load that shoots the best (assuming velocity and weight matches my requirements).

-matt
 

edward

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it better be able to penetrate as well or it aint worth crap.
 

matt85

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it better be able to penetrate as well or it aint worth crap.

what solid currently on the market doesnt penetrate well? the least expensive most primitive solids on the market is Hornady's DGS and members here use those with a decent track record (i have heard of a few failures but it doesnt seem common).

-matt
 

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Only used 500 grain Woodleigh solids on elephant, Federal factory ammo in .458win...it sure kills them .
Would very much like to try out the Woodleigh Hydro in .458win/Lott.

I will use 480 grain Woodleigh solids in my .475NE on my next ele hunt.
 

bassasdaindia

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Matt,
Did you ever get a hold of those 600gr Peregrines for the .505Gibbs? I'm about to order some Peregrine 570gr Brass solids for the 500N.E. Think it's the VRG-2 if I'm not mistaken.
Then for soft, I'm going to be looking at Rhino softs, which are also locally made, but lead core. Had exceptional performance out of their softs in the .416Rigby on a Giraffe bull.

@KMG Hunting Safaris , Marius that is what I am also using in my bigger rifles , good choice .

Kobus from Rhino informs me that the softs will expand at around 1700 fps .
 

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Hi Matt,

Most of the PH's I've had the pleasure of speaking with about rifles and bullets, use either the .458 Lott or the .458 South African Express 3", with 500 gr monolithic solids, when backing up clients on heavy dangerous animals.

One I met uses a custom built 98 Mauser in .416 Rigby to back clients on heavy dangerous game.
They all told me the brand or brands of solids they preferred but, I do not recall which one/s they named.
I think Rhino might have been one maker and/or Stewart may have been one as well.
At any rate, I examined some of their carefully assembled hand loads and these monolithic, truly "solid" bullets were of the flat point or "meplat" profile/shape.

And as a side note, I think it is worth mentioning that in regards to the .458 calibers / 500 gr bullet, to the last man they all felt that about 2200 fps was a "hot load".
Reportedly, they rather often but not quite every time, have complete pass-through results with these on buffalo, no matter what the angle.

I no longer recall what velocity the PH with the .416 preferred but, he did tell me of shooting most of the way through a bull elephant that, was standing on somewhat lower ground than himself at the shot.
In other words, pretty much face to face, shooting neither upward (as is reportedly usual with elephant), nor shooting downward either.
His 400 gr flat tipped solid entered the front of the skull, through the brain and into the body.
It was recovered in relatively excellent condition, in the gut sack near the other end of the animal, during the butchering process.

The theory is that a round nosed bullet struggles to push its way through a large ponderous target whereas, a flat nosed bullet actually cuts its way through, at least to some degree.

Cheers,
Paul Dog.
 
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Panielsen

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thanks guys

@Panielsen how has your experience been with the .458" 500gr DGS in you 458 WM? how is the performance on game?

@edward i was hoping someone would post about those cup solids. North Fork also makes a version of these out of copper that i did some load testing in the past on. i didnt have much luck but i also didnt test them as much as i should have. i would think that this type of bullet would be ideal for hippo on land or as follow up shots for elephant and buffalo. these bullets supposedly penetrate much like a standard solid but do more damage which in my line of thinking would make them ideal for fleeing animals.

-matt
Hey Matt, I haven't been yet. Hunt got pushed back, to we are hoping first week of December this year. I also want to make a correction to my post. I loaded 470r. Raptors by Cutting Edge Bullets for this hunt at 2100+fps and not 500r. I mis-spoke... I am still going to take the Hornady DGS loads I loaded up as back up rounds if needed. I was really impressed with these Raptor's so I am going to try them. They are Brass and not copper, so I am hoping to reduce fouling. When I return I will be sure to put a review of their performance on Buff, good or bad. I will keep everyone posted!
 

matt85

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The theory is that a round nosed bullet struggles to push its way through a large ponderous target whereas, a flat nosed bullet actually cuts its way through, at least to some degree.

this theory matches my experience with both animals and targets. even on paper you can tell whether a target has been shot with a round nose bullet or a flat nosed bullet. flat nosed bullets makes bigger holes then round nosed bullets in both paper, gel, and meat.

-matt
 

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