Discussion in 'Reloading' started by norfolk shooter, Sep 19, 2017.
I've tried to get Northforks in the U.K. One would have better luck drinking tea out of a sugar cup!
@CAustin you read my mind, I had the exact same thought when I saw @IvW pictures.
I'm pretty sure dad plans on using his 404 J. for DG but I'll need something in the 416 Rigby to back him up. Currently we are talking about using a 400 grain A-Frame or Northfork at 2400fps but the rifle will make the final choice, which ever bullet it likes best will be the one we use.
Both are very good choices.
Can anyone comment on Woodleigh performance in say; 35 Whelen or .375 H and H? I asked the Canadian rep how the PPSN would compare to the A Frame. He said it would expand a bit faster and more dramatically, losing a bit of mass (>20%) but were bonded and would hold together. He liked them for buff.
These sort of look like they were recovered from a sand berm. What were they shot into? I JUST used a .416 340 grain Weldcore PP on a black bear last weekend and the bullet plowed right through and dropped the bear in its track. I loaded the same rounds and recovered one at the range after slamming into a rocky berm at over 2,500 fps and the base of the shank was still in place and the whole bullet looked great! The bear had a tennis ball sized hole out it's off shoulder, but mind you the bullet was the lighter Woodleigh. Also, the copper jackets on them are pretty thick. I have no doubt that a 400-450 grain weldcore would drop buffalo like a wrecking ball.
Here is the link to the bear thread in case you were interested in my experience with them on game:
I have not tried them for dangerous game. I had a 270 gr 375 H&H UK at 2650 fps. I shot a Kudu through and through both shoulders at about 30 yards, a zebra in the chest at 50 yards and a Gemsbok at about 150 yards. All one shot. I loved the very emphatic effect they had. That is one reason I have been following this thread so closely because I had always thought of them as good for their stated speed parameters.
Thats why I feel norma use them for there top of the range ammo.
I have been following this thread since it started and I must say it has been informative. The bullet companies have a tough job these days, to create a bullet that expands to a perfect mushroom on all game from small plains game to the Cape Buffalo and even Elephant.
Cup and core bullets that drive in 1-2" on a white tail deer then explode in the heart and lungs give us that instant kill we all love so much would only make a buff or ele want to stomp a mud hole in our chest.
Yet the bullet that that is capable of penatrating through a buff/ele may pass almost with out opening in the white tail deer if it hits the heart lungs it will die just not on the spot.
Now that I've stated the obvious the choice comes down to personal preference and what shot we take or don't take and if we can hit where we aim.
Hitting the stomach a little to far back or the shoulder a little to far forward can spell trouble on a quartering shot with a softer bullet.
A solid will drive through a lot of bone and guts to hit the heart lungs but may only make a smaller hole as it slowed down may take a little more time to end the fight.
My best advice is get the bullet that you think is best in your situation and shoot it a lot so you minimize the margin of error.
Here is that .416 340 grain woodleigh Weldcore pp retrieved from the 50 yard berm:
After expending about 4,900 ft-lbs into the sand and rocks and coming out looking like this.... I am sold! Great bullet for all thin skinned game!
This is a 450 grain woodleigh fired from a factory Norma 416 Remington round. It entered a Buffalo cow from the rear and was recovered just under the skin on the front shoulder. I'd have to look back at my notes, but it weighed around 430 grains when recovered, if I remember correctly. I have full confidence in these and will use them again if I have another chance to hunt buffalo.
Don't forget...North Fork makes a great 430gr for the 404J. Amazing SD of .343 on that bullet!!
That bullet out of the 404 at around 2,200 would be the bomb!
Here's a couple of Woodies and A Frames from Buff. Left from a .500NE from 40 yards and recovered from under the skin on far side. Next a .404J shot from 30 yards, it's flattened from hitting the shoulder knuckle on the far side and stopping there. Pretty good performance I believe. The other 3 are 275gn A Frames from a .338 WM. The first two are front on head shots from less than 100 yards, and were found in the neck. The last was a side on shotand found under the skin on the far side, again from under 100 yards.
As I said before maybe I'd like to see the .404j a bit harder, but maybe I'm being fussy as I usually try to get as close as I can as I use open sites and my eyes aren't the best, and at 30 yards they'd still be zipping along.
Just read your post regarding the black bear you hunted. Nice rifle and good shooting.
Just some comments if I may:
"I think the woodleigh is my new favorite thin skinned bullet."
Areed good bullet for thin skinned game.
"This bear wasn't that big but it expanded completely and left a tennis ball sized exit would. Bear collapsed even though no bones were hit except a rib."
This to me again shows severe expansion even though no bones were hit as you mention. Would you feel confident to use this bullet on a Cape Buffalo even if you may hit the heavy shoulder bones to get to the vitals?
Personally I would not.
Did this specific bullet fail? No it did not, it killed the black bear(not a large one), with one shot.
The size of the exit wound after the bullet did not encounter any bone is what concerns me and this is the point I have been trying to make. In my opinion they are too soft and they over expand on bigger applications such as Buffalo.
I think with the same bullet at 2200 fps the bear would have been dead all the same and the expansion more controlled and the exit wound much smaller.
Question is would you use this bullet on Cape Buffalo at 416 Rigby velocities?
I would not.
Again an example that they do not have the penetration when hitting bone.
If you were using North Fork or Rhino solid shank bullets that bullet would have shattered the shoulder knuckle and penetrated the chest cavity.
To me that is not pretty good performance, especially when you need a bullet to penetrate in order to stop a Cape buffalo.
Clearly you have made up your mind, go for it. Your profile indicates you are a PH, yes?
But by claiming that an entire brand of projectile is completely useless because of your limited experience suggests a deeper seated prejudice that you might want to get help with.
There are plenty of people with experience of success and failure with any and every brand of bullet everywhere.
None of which helps the original poster on this thread, but I'm sure he'll pretty quickly work out what does and doesn't work for him - from his own experience.
I know I said for thin skinned game but I was referencing a 340 grain woodleigh bullet made for that. What I was commenting on was the fact that the bullet expanded properly and quickly, which is what I am looking for in a bullet. The wound in the black bear is an indicator that the bullet had not ever slowed appreciably by the time it exited and was still in the process of expanding. Forcing the nose open requires a tremendous amount of energy and is what causes the apex of the temporary stretch cavity. This cavity is what liquifies internal organs far beyond the bullets path. Usually a large exit hole (the bear had a tennis ball sized whole in it's off shoulder) indicates that the bullet was still in the process of creating that cavity when it exited.
Saying that rapid expansion = bullet failure means that you would have to discount the the Barnes TSX and TTSX as they are some of the fastest expanding bullets on the market. A fast expanding bullet that holds together is something that I prefer because it means that the bullet has begun to expand before it completely enters the vitals but fast enough to ensure the temorary cavity is well within the vital organs. The woodleigh seems to do that well and it also holds together from what I have seen.
What I was commenting on was that this bullet, large caliber, driven much faster than a heavy game bullet would be, still didn't even leave any of its core or jacket in the animal, the way a fragile bullet might have. It held together and penetrated in a straight line. My observation was that woodleighs seem to be very well made and designed for their purpose well. They are one of the few bullets built and tested in a country where they are routinely used on large thick skinned game. They are also by far, the most common (worldwide) of that breed of bullet. I have to imagine that if their bullets really were that crappy, Woodleigh would have changed them by now, but seeing as Australians routinely use them year after year to hunt buff that are bigger and heavier than the cape buffalo, shows that they do in fact work and work well enough that they have not seen fit to change their design.
And personally, I would absolutely have zero qualms about hunting large thick skinned game with a woodleigh, albeit I would load one of their 400 (2,400 fps), 410 (2,375fps) or 450 (2,200fps) grain loads for that purpose. My point was that they are well made, the only downside is that in America at least, they are insanely expensive compared to bullets which are tougher like the TSX.
That said, I have to respect your opnion as I am sure you have shot a lot more heavy thick skinned game than I have. I still might give them a go.... mainly because I have a ton of them (I got 200 for $11.00/50)
"Clearly you have made up your mind, go for it. Your profile indicates you are a PH, yes?"
Yes I am. I have seen numerous failures with Woodleighs in non NE calibers. When used on DG. I have stopped enough Cape buffalo, Elephant and Lion to know they are not for me and I share that experience when fellow AfricaHunting guy's ask. I use Rhino bullets for all my DG back-up work.
"But by claiming that an entire brand of projectile is completely useless because of your limited experience suggests a deeper seated prejudice that you might want to get help with."
??? I never claimed this!!
I have repeatedly said they are too soft for use on DG, especially Cape buffalo when using non NE cartridges. When used on soft skinned game and traditional NE cartridges in doubles they work better.
"There are plenty of people with experience of success and failure with any and every brand of bullet everywhere."
So there are, however I don't see people with negative feedback regarding Rhino solid shank, North Fork or Swift A frame bullets used on DG when compared to Woodleigh.
"None of which helps the original poster on this thread, but I'm sure he'll pretty quickly work out what does and doesn't work for him - from his own experience."
I fail to see how feedback from experienced people regarding bullet selection does not help the OP. I am sure he would not like to find out on his DG hunt in Africa that his chosen bullet failed!
We are talking 416 Rigby in a Sabatti double, possibly regulated for a 400gr bullet @ 2415 fps, for use on DG(Cape Buffalo). He needs a bullet of 400gr at about the same velocity to get it to regulate, the Woodleigh in my opinion is not the bullet for that.
To answer your original 3 questions:
1. I believe the impact velocity recommendations are not correct in some DG calibers. In particular 300gr 375 H&H and 400gr 416 Rigby.
2.They perform well in original double rifle NE calibers which operate at lower velocities. They are the closest available to the original Kynoch bullets that were for years the only ammo available for double rifles.
At higher velocities(OP original 416 Rigby), the performance is not so good.
3. Yes they are good enough for Norma and as loaded in the African PH range they are excellent. However the PH range is loaded with the heavy for caliber bullets at modest velocity.
For the 416 Rigby in question the PH range is loaded with a 450 gr Woodleigh with a modest velocity of 2150 fps. So to not perform at that velocity and weigh it will have to be made from lead only. One small problem for the OP is he has a double rifle regulated for 400gr bullets, so the PH range is unfortunately not an option for him.
The OP is welcome to disregard my advice and experience, each person makes their own choices.
Just do I'm clear on your position: if someone doesn't hold the same opinion as you, they need help?
Isn't it the impact velocity and not the starting velocity that the website refers to?
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