308 ammo for elk. TTSX ok under 300 yards?

TheHammer

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Then why does Barnes make them ? I went to the gun store, brought a Tikka, and brought 2 boxes of 168 TTSX off the shelf. and wa-la !!! accurate beyond accurate off the shelf combination !! never even tried another brand of ammo in this .308
Sounds like an excellent combination! Have you shot a bull before or seen a bull being harvested? They typically don’t just fall over unless you shock their central nervous system. When I asked about the terminal situation, it appears more want to know this as well. All 4 shots the animal was perfectly broadside? The animal didn’t move after the first shot? How much time lapsed between first n last shot? If you stuck 4 bullets in lung tissue and didn’t touch anything else that animal is going to eventually expire. I’ve seen this out of a 7mag and eldx, 6.5 prc with 155 Berger’s. One was 4 shots n the other was 3 the time lapse was not more then 1 minute in either situation from first to last shot. Took a moment in both cases before the animal went down. A high shoulder shot by the 3rd in both cases I witnessed should’ve been considered…
 

bline

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I've been primarily hunting with a 308 for the last few years and considered mono bullets but decided that the cartridges lower velocity combined with a bullet that requires more speed to reliably expand than bonded bullets may not be the best combination for me. I've settled on Federal Terminal Ascent 175's and have been very happy with their performance on a number of deer and one elk. I'd be more inclined to use monos if I shot a cartridge with higher velocity.
 

Short Track

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Sounds like an excellent combination! Have you shot a bull before or seen a bull being harvested? They typically don’t just fall over unless you shock their central nervous system. When I asked about the terminal situation, it appears more want to know this as well. All 4 shots the animal was perfectly broadside? The animal didn’t move after the first shot? How much time lapsed between first n last shot? If you stuck 4 bullets in lung tissue and didn’t touch anything else that animal is going to eventually expire.
2 shots perfectly broadside into the lungs. He did move walk more than 10 feet. Then he decides to turn around and walk back where he came from. So he starts walking the other way. 2 more shots into the lungs from the other side. I never had an Elk stand around to absorb more shots. They always run, not far, but they run.
 
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We've dropped them with one or two shots .308 win with 165 nosler partitions, 48-49 gr. Imr 4831.
To the bolier . No issues yet
 

Trackselk

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I've killed about 7 bulls with the 150 ttsx. 308. 2 from 350 yards, and one from 300 were the longest shots. Lungs every time , no shoulder. Died quick every time with the perfect advertised petals peeled back, except for the one I hit wrong, and he still bled out as that copper kept going through and clipped an artery. Pretty sure I would have lost that elk with a lead bullet. Makes it hard to change...
 

Formidilosus

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There has to be more to this story. This makes little sense. Those exact bullets open easy for a mono. I see dozens of critters shot with those bullets every year and I’ve never seen results like that, not once.
It's all over the internet. Copper bullet failure. What more could there possibly be ????
Perfect weather conditions, .308 broadside shot into the lungs. 180 yards. Everything came together perfectly, except having to put 4 into the lungs. Would he have died with 2 into the lungs, absolutely, but I wasn't waiting around to find out, and I wasn't waiting around to chase him at 8000' into some scrub oak.
Short fuse’s pics may indicate otherwise…180 yards, hardly any expansion. Looks like typical Barnes expansion at 2300 fps

I realize the 168 is softer, I chose it for my WSM as a solid option for that reason. I’ll use lead first personally.



I’m confused here- Short Tracks photo shows two TTSX’s with their petals sheared off. Why are y’all saying they didn’t expand?
 

BBarnett13

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To reinforce what Form stated, the petals are sheared off. This happened to a bull I shot with a 300WM using 180gr. TTSX at approximately 150 yards.
 

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Trackselk

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To the OP. You'll be good to 400 yards with the 150's, and still have a safe amount of extra velocity to make sure they expand (factory. 308 velocity). So, they are a great choice at 300 if your gun likes them. My kimber shoots the factory rounds in .33"
 

Macintosh

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These are both 168gr ttsx fired from a 3006, the bright one a bit over 100 yds in a deer (belly to spine, exit through large vertebra, was already down), the other from an elk at 60-70 yards, found against the exit side shoulder ball joint. Impact velocity would have been 2500-2600 for both.
Higher velocity than a 308 at 180 yards, but wondering about the bullets pictured with petals “sheared off”. The other picture of bullet from 308 looks to me like the bullet never created petals in the first place, as on both of my bullets the petals expanded significantly farther down the shaft of the bullet before one broke off. I haven’t seen very many of these, but it looks to me like those bullets simply didn’t expand, not that they broke petals off. Are those other bullets expanding only a tiny amount before the petals break off? Expansion and petals do not look the same to me so I’m wondering what the difference is. Anyone with more experience with these have ideas on why my bullets did not shear petals (minus 1) even though they opened much further and were traveling 150-200fps faster on impact?
 

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Trackselk

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If you're worried about the 168's, I've recovered several 150's from 100-350 yards, and they all look the same, like the adds, no petals lost. Not that losing a petal would be a bad thing. Also, no need to waste shoulder meat and make a mess, as all but one of my 7(ish) were just in the vitals, and they all expanded and were usually in the offside hide. Small sample I know, but I haven't seen many reports of failures. I'm still going eldx for 500 yards in my new 6.5 CM though...
 

Formidilosus

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These are both 168gr ttsx fired from a 3006, the bright one a bit over 100 yds in a deer (belly to spine, exit through large vertebra, was already down), the other from an elk at 60-70 yards, found against the exit side shoulder ball joint. Impact velocity would have been 2500-2600 for both.
Higher velocity than a 308 at 180 yards, but wondering about the bullets pictured with petals “sheared off”. The other picture of bullet from 308 looks to me like the bullet never created petals in the first place, as on both of my bullets the petals expanded significantly farther down the shaft of the bullet before one broke off. I haven’t seen very many of these, but it looks to me like those bullets simply didn’t expand, not that they broke petals off. Are those other bullets expanding only a tiny amount before the petals break off? Expansion and petals do not look the same to me so I’m wondering what the difference is. Anyone with more experience with these have ideas on why my bullets did not shear petals (minus 1) even though they opened much further and were traveling 150-200fps faster on impact?


The ones that Short Track showed 100% sheared the nose- have seen dozen like that in animals and testing. As for why his two did it and yours haven’t- “2” isn’t data. They’re bullets, they very and have a certain level of inconsistency.
 

Macintosh

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The ones that Short Track showed 100% sheared the nose- have seen dozen like that in animals and testing. As for why his two did it and yours haven’t- “2” isn’t data. They’re bullets, they very and have a certain level of inconsistency.

Fair enough, thank you. Of the four data points shown, 2 worked as expected, two didnt. In your experience is failure like that shown as common as normal expansion, is it rare, or somewhere in between? And what was the difference in lethality between the expanded bullets and the ones sheared off with minimal expansion as pictured?
 

Formidilosus

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Fair enough, thank you. Of the four data points shown, 2 worked as expected, two didnt. In your experience is failure like that shown as common as normal expansion, is it rare, or somewhere in between?

Monolithic bullets have by far the most failure to expand issues of any bullet type. That’s in both testing and large numbers of animals. I would not classify those bullets as “failures” however.


And what was the difference in lethality between the expanded bullets and the ones sheared off with minimal expansion as pictured?

When monos fragment the front end, the fragments create more wound channels and consequently- generally kill quicker. I do not choose to use monos as they are compromised in the tissue damage created and therefor kill slower all else being equal. Having said that, when I do have to use monos, I greatly prefer monos that fragment if I can help it. Unfortunately the monos the fragment generally have poor BC and more erratic performance. Of all the commercially available common expanding monos, Barnes LRX is what I would use.
 

Macintosh

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In that case, can you verify my understanding of what you are saying? Im hearing that the “failure to expand” pictures (edit: I am referring to the pics shown earlier of 308 ttsx that were introduced as having not expanded, but now I guess expanded and had petals sheared off) are no worse at dropping an animal quickly than the “perfectly mushroomed” pictures since neither one has the larger wound channel of a lead bullet, and sheared petal damage more or less equals (or maybe even exceeds) mushroom damage…my takeaway being that if Im generally happy with copper performance, having a couple where the petals shear off as shown is somewhat likely, but wont likely change my positive impression of copper or the end-result on the animal. Is that a fair characterization of what you’re saying?
 
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Formidilosus

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In that case, can you verify my understanding of what you are saying? Im hearing that the “failure to expand” pictures are no worse at dropping an animal quickly than the “perfectly mushroomed” pictures



No. A failure to expand will generally lead to very long track jobs and a measurably slower death. His picture isn’t a failure to expand, it’s an “over expansion” if you want to think of it that way. Just take your bullets and keep the petals peeling back until they break off leaving the shank of the bullet.


and sheared petal damage more or less equals (or maybe even exceeds) mushroom damage…my takeaway being that if Im generally happy with copper performance, having a couple where the petals shear off as shown is somewhat likely, but wont likely change my positive impression of copper or the end-result on the animal. Is that a fair characterization of what you’re saying?

If you are happy with monos, a bullet that has the petals break off during expansion doesn’t change much.
 

Sandstrom

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These are from an cow elk hunt 2 years ago. 308 150 grain TTSX factory ammo. Recovered from our two cow elk. If I remember correctly, the one I shot was around 290 yards, I shot her twice, probably didn’t need the second shot, but she was still standing. The second cow (my dad shooting) was a bit more of a rodeo, still not bad though. First shot hit the front leg joint/elbow destroyed leg, failed to penetrate into rib cage which is where we found it. It did produce significant bruising on the lungs. Follow up shots at 330 yards. If I remember correctly, she took two more hits, then went down. (Poor shot placement due to her changing position and us not realizing the 20mph gust coming up the draw...) The other recovered bullet was found under the far side hide.

In conclusion, 5 impacts with 150 TTSX at 2100 to 2250 FPS resulted in 2 dead elk, 2 recovered bullets, and 3 pass throughs.

Ryan CAD93A26-7518-4A18-A305-C32B4EAF9190.jpeg
 

S-3 ranch

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I like peddles for sure! I can’t understand why those ones made in Montana are designed to brake off and pencil though at caliber size.

and why design a bullet that requires a custom barrel twist To stabilize?
 
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