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I was watching the net the other day and a guy was talking about how good the 7mm Remington magnum was a great all around rifle. The guy went on to say the 7mm Remington magnum was a good elk rifle as long as you shoot them behind the shoulder. He stated that if you keep trying to break elk shoulders with a 7mm Remington it would let you down (he preferred a .33 caliber rifle).

Two things he did not mention was bullet type of range.

I have only hunted elk with a .30 caliber magnum rifle and haven’t killed enough to have a opinion but I just can’t see a quality bullet from 150 grains and up not breaking shoulders.

Anyone have a good quality bullet not make it through a elks shoulder?

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Man, I live to smash elk shoulders with my 7 Magnum. That stuff is pure internet or folk lore. A decently built 7mm bullet will absolutely crush a bulls front legs, no if, ands, or buts about it.

Last edited by beretzs; 11/07/22.

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Funny. When I was a kid, and everyone in my neighborhood had to have a 7mm Remington Magnum for elk, the rationale was that it busted elk shoulders so well. It was the epitome of the westerner's "big gun."

I watched my brother shoot a big cow square in the shoulder with the original 150gr Ballistic Tip from a 280 and the bullet obviously failed. That bullet worked great on neck and ribs shots though, which is what brought down that cow. The shoulder hit caused a massive, shallow flesh wound, 5-6 inches across, but didn't bust the bone or get to the ribs. Neither of us understood anything about bullets back then, except that hollow points popped, and standard bullets didn't. I'd never even seen a bullet "fail" before.


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I have killed elk witha 7 mag, .06, .308 and a few more. Most with a heavy for caliber bullet or a partition As state the quality of the bullet has a lot to do with breaking shoulders, but am not a fan of that shot.

I have read some guys say they would rather take home half an animal with shot up meat than none. I'd rather wait for abetter shot presentation and take home a whole animal with no blood shot meat

Last edited by saddlesore; 11/07/22.

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I've shot a number of elk with a 30 cal Accu-bond. It'll easily break a shoulder bone on the near side but then it falls apart. The pieces will really tear up things inside, though. One time I found the bullet casing against the far ribs but not the bullet core. It showed up months later when we cooked the heart.


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What are you calling a "shoulder"?

Since you're talking about breaking it, I assume you're talking about bone. Is the bone the scapula or the heavy upper leg bone/knuckle? Or are we just talking the shoulder meat and the ribs behind it?


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Originally Posted by saddlesore
I have killed elk witha 7 mag, .06, .308 and a few more. Most with a heavy for caliber bullet or a partition As state the quality of the bullet has a lot to do with breaking shoulders, but am not a fan of that shot.

I have read some guys say they would rather take home half an animal with shot up meat than none. I'd rather wait for abetter shot presentation and take home a whole animal with no blood shot meat

+1


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Front or rear shoulder?




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Originally Posted by Teeder
Front or rear shoulder?




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Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by Teeder
Front or rear shoulder?




grin

Rears are way tougher! whistle

You're just busting our azzes with those comments...


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Originally Posted by Brad
Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by Teeder
Front or rear shoulder?




grin

Rears are way tougher! whistle

You're just busting our azzes with those comments...

Who me grin


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Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by Brad
Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by Teeder
Front or rear shoulder?




grin

Rears are way tougher! whistle

You're just busting our azzes with those comments...

Who me grin

"Busting our azzes" get it? grin

Should have said "busting our shoulders."


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Too much meat damage but 7mm RM is perfectly capable as is 7mm-08 and 270 with proper bullet and range.

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Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
Anyone have a good quality bullet not make it through a elks shoulder?


140 grain 6.5 mm VLD for me, at least twice and I suspect a few more times. Some folks have great luck with that bullet but I have not. Any other decent bullet has had zero issue breaking elk shoulders for me.

In years past, I dug a couple of mushroomed .284-.308” C&C bullets out of elk shoulder bones, scarred over from hunters past. I have zero clue about weight, impact velocity, shot angle or the like. These were years ago and bullets have come a long way since so I am not sure it is a valid comparison now.



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Originally Posted by Brad
What are you calling a "shoulder"?

Since you're talking about breaking it, I assume you're talking about bone. Is the bone the scapula or the heavy upper leg bone/knuckle? Or are we just talking the shoulder meat and the ribs behind it?
About any bullet will just poke a hole through the blade of a scapula. You need to hit the joint between it and the humerus. I prefer to hit a bit farther back, just above the point of the elbow, not worrying about breaking the bones. Do that and you've got heart and lungs. It's not going far. I've shot 3 of my last 4 elk there and none went 5 yards..


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Originally Posted by Brad
Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by Brad
Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by Teeder
Front or rear shoulder?




grin

Rears are way tougher! whistle

You're just busting our azzes with those comments...

Who me grin

"Busting our azzes" get it? grin

Should have said "busting our shoulders."

Oh I saw what you did there buddy!

I am interested in what you think about it though. I haven't ever seen any 270-7mm-30 have much trouble breaking the scapula or the knuckle joints on elk if they were good bullets.


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I’ve saw quite a few broken by the 162gr Hornady SPBT out of a 7mag and even more with the .277 150 Partition.

Never saw one fail to bust at least one shoulder and keep trucking on into the good stuff.

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140 eldm's work pretty well on elk shoulders

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Originally Posted by Brad
What are you calling a "shoulder"?

Since you're talking about breaking it, I assume you're talking about bone. Is the bone the scapula or the heavy upper leg bone/knuckle? Or are we just talking the shoulder meat and the ribs behind it?


Brad,

If that was directed at me I would say leg bone/knuckle is what I consider as the shoulder.

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30-06, 165 grain Nosler Ballistic Tip @ 2940 fps mv... 340 yard shot.

Bullet blew right through the scapula, trashed everything, broke the off-side scapula, but didn't make it through. She was down & dead within seconds.

Sadly I didn't find the bullet while field dressing.

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

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Originally Posted by beretzs
I am interested in what you think about it though. I haven't ever seen any 270-7mm-30 have much trouble breaking the scapula or the knuckle joints on elk if they were good bullets.

I've never had a problem with a scapula or "meaty shoulder shot" with any bullet, and can't remember ever hitting the upper leg bone, though I did hit the big knuckle once. That was with a 165 Horandy BTSP from a 308. The shot was 230 yards. At the shot there was a loud "crack." The bullet center punched the knuckle and went into the lungs. I found the lead-less jacket in the chest cavity. That's about the worst torture test of any game bullet I can think of. I've also never had any issue with 7-08 or 270, though there are a bunch of guys with a lot more experience than me with both those rounds. Also, I'm a "tight behind the shoulder" shooter by training, so I don't always connect on the shoulder.

I just don't think it's all that hard to kill elk with any controlled expansion bullet from general purpose BG cartridges, and I've killed bulls with the 270, 7-08, 308, 30-06, 300 WSM, and 338 WM.


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Brad,

Do you think that 165 grain Hornady BTSP would have made it if you shot that elk at 50 yards?

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Those joints are brutal on bullets.

This is a 180 PT found in the opposite joint cracking the other pretty good.

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

It’s the most mangled I’d even seen a PT.


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Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
Brad,

Do you think that 165 grain Hornady BTSP would have made it if you shot that elk at 50 yards?

Good question. It definitely would have broken the knuckle and the bull would probably have hit the turf, but whether it would have made it into the lungs, I don't know.


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Originally Posted by beretzs
Those joints are brutal on bullets.

This is a 180 PT found in the opposite joint cracking the other pretty good.

It’s the most mangled I’d even seen a PT.

That's pretty cool!


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Originally Posted by Cascade
30-06, 165 grain Nosler Ballistic Tip @ 2940 fps mv... 340 yard shot.

Bullet blew right through the scapula, trashed everything, broke the off-side scapula, but didn't make it through. She was down & dead within seconds.

Sadly I didn't find the bullet while field dressing.

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

Regards, Guy
I'll be willing to bet that you lost it when skinning her. The hide's like a trampoline. A bullet that's been slowed down that much will usually be caught by the hide and is lying loose under it. It fell out when you pulled the hide back.


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Originally Posted by Rock Chuck
Originally Posted by Cascade
30-06, 165 grain Nosler Ballistic Tip @ 2940 fps mv... 340 yard shot.

Bullet blew right through the scapula, trashed everything, broke the off-side scapula, but didn't make it through. She was down & dead within seconds.

Sadly I didn't find the bullet while field dressing.

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

Regards, Guy
I'll be willing to bet that you lost it when skinning her. The hide's like a trampoline. A bullet that's been slowed down that much will usually be caught by the hide and is lying loose under it. It fell out when you pulled the hide back.


I’d throw a dollar in with you there RC.


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Originally Posted by beretzs
Those joints are brutal on bullets.

This is a 180 PT found in the opposite joint cracking the other pretty good.

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

It’s the most mangled I’d even seen a PT.

What cartridge and distance?

That’s a awesome pic!

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300 Win about 275 yards from what I remember.


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Originally Posted by duke61
7mm RM is perfectly capable as is 7mm-08 and 270 with proper bullet and range.

This^^^^^^^though I don't really prefer a shoulder joint shot, but just behind when possible.

Most good bullets from adequate chamberings will do just fine. Nosler Partitions have never disappointed.

MM

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Originally Posted by MontanaMan
Originally Posted by duke61
7mm RM is perfectly capable as is 7mm-08 and 270 with proper bullet and range.

This^^^^^^^though I don't really prefer a shoulder joint shot, but just behind when possible.

Most good bullets from adequate chamberings will do just fine. Nosler Partitions have never disappointed.

MM

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

I was hoping you'd chime in as well MM. I think Bob and you both had some 130's recovered from Elk. While I don't target the joint, or front leg bones totally on purpose, if they're on any sorta angle, I do point line up the far leg most times. Just an easy reference point.


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Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by MontanaMan
[quote=duke61] 7mm RM is perfectly capable as is 7mm-08 and 270 with proper bullet and range.

This^^^^^^^though I don't really prefer a shoulder joint shot, but just behind when possible.

Most good bullets from adequate chamberings will do just fine. Nosler Partitions have never disappointed.

MM

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

^^^ This ^^^


180gr Nosler Partition found just under the skin behind the far side shoulder (300wsm) 286 yds. First shot was through the boiler room, bullet not recovered. He just stood there and did a little shudder then acted like he wasn't even hit. They sure are impressive animals.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

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Originally Posted by jc189
Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by MontanaMan
[quote=duke61] 7mm RM is perfectly capable as is 7mm-08 and 270 with proper bullet and range.

This^^^^^^^though I don't really prefer a shoulder joint shot, but just behind when possible.

Most good bullets from adequate chamberings will do just fine. Nosler Partitions have never disappointed.

MM

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

^^^ This ^^^


180gr Nosler Partition found just under the skin behind the far side shoulder (300wsm) 286 yds. First shot was through the boiler room, bullet not recovered. He just stood there and did a little shudder then acted like he wasn't even hit. They sure are impressive animals.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

Are you sure that is a 180 Partition? The enclosed base kinda gives it away.


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Originally Posted by MontanaMan
Originally Posted by duke61
7mm RM is perfectly capable as is 7mm-08 and 270 with proper bullet and range.

This^^^^^^^though I don't really prefer a shoulder joint shot, but just behind when possible.

Most good bullets from adequate chamberings will do just fine. Nosler Partitions have never disappointed.

MM

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

There have been 4 killed on the ranch so far this year. 2 cows and 1 spike that went less than 100 yards apiece. The fourth a spike that went just under 200 yards maybe, and into a crappy gulch.
The first 3 were double lunged, the most recent was a single lung hit.
Various large calibers, Im not sure on the whole break the shoulder thing? It’s a big thing to many?
Lotta elk get lunged by bow hunters and fall down just fine as well.
Im glad for you guys who make the shoulder shot work.

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Well I guess anything is possible. That's what they were sold to me as. I bought several partial open box's of bullets from my gunsmith. That bullet came out of a nosler partition box. If it is not, it is a surprise to me. I loaded those bullets at his shop for that hunt. If it is not, I apologize for posting a pic that is not correct. But it sure did a nice job on an Elk.

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Last couple of COVID seasons when Partitions and bonded bullets were not to be found, I turned to the new-to-me ELD-X.

It was an exercise in patience. Broadside only, waiting for the near-side leg to take a step, then firing.

After 4 elk that way, I still don't know if I'd use that bullet on about any shot angle, or deliberately on bone. Just haven't heard enough from others how well that bullet holds together.

In any case, now I can get my hands on any number of bonded bullets, so I guess it don't matter...

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Originally Posted by jc189
Well I guess anything is possible. That's what they were sold to me as. I bought several partial open box's of bullets from my gunsmith. That bullet came out of a nosler partition box. If it is not, it is a surprise to me. I loaded those bullets at his shop for that hunt. If it is not, I apologize for posting a pic that is not correct. But it sure did a nice job on an Elk.

No doubt it worked, but I'd probably bet a buck it isn't a Partition. Not that it matters, looks like it worked like it was supposed to.


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Quote
180gr Nosler Partition found just under the skin behind the far side shoulder (300wsm) 286 yds. First shot was through the boiler room, bullet not recovered. He just stood there and did a little shudder then acted like he wasn't even hit. They sure are impressive animals.
Quite likely you hit a major artery which created massive internal bleeding. The blood pressure plummeted and he went into shock. He was dead on his feet. The problem is, are you SURE he's in shock? If he is, he's dead. But, if you didn't hit anything vital, he could get his feet under him and take off. The only way to be sure it so shoot again. I once put 4 shots into a bull's lungs like that. They were jello and the far shoulder was broken. He just stood there, then slowly fell over. He was in shock and just waiting to finish bleeding out before he collapsed.


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I have killed a lot of elk in my 55 years of hunting them and in about 1/2 of that time I also guided hunters so I have seen a LOT more killed then those I have killed myself
I have seen them killed with rifles as small as 243s and as large as a 577 Snider, and 62 caliber flintlock.
Bullet construction is far more important then BC, SD, velocity, and all the marketers hype they try to force feed you.

I have killed them with 7X57 Mauser, 7MM Rem Mag and 7MM Weatherby mag. If using good bullets they break the big bones just fine. So does a 270 Winchester with 150grain partitions and the old Remington Core-Lokts and the 160 grain Partitions too. In fact the old Remington bullets were superb.
In my years of guiding the 2 calibers that gave the worst bullet performance overall were the 7 Mags and the 300 Mags and 100% of those failures were because of using bullets that were to fragile for an animal that large. And yet if loaded with proper bullets they all worked like magic.
I took a man out many years ago who came from new Jersey to hunt in the Selway and he shot a bull that ran off a ways. He has a 300 Weatherby Mag and loaded it with 165 grain bullets (I think they were Speer Hot Cores) We caught up to the elk about 500 yards from the place he hit it (still took us about an hour to find it) and I shot it 3 times with my 44 mag. He made a comment how a handgun was worthless if his 300 Weatherby didn't drop it, but was shocked to see all 3 of my round exited his bull and his bullet went only about 14 inches deep and didn't make it to the other lung. Mine were all hits in the mid or rear body as it ran away, and all 3 came out the front of the chest. After that he started to listen when I told him what bullets' to bring.
He hunted with me 4 times in the next years and every time after that he showed up with 220 grain bullets loaded. Never has a problem after that.

That is one of several stories I can relay about such lack of performance and shallow penetration's, but in case of a gal shooting a 243 with Barnes X bullets she did fine. Not all exits, but all went clear through and were on the skin on the off side.

A 7MM mag (or a 7-08 or 7x57) is fine for elk if you load "elk bullets" in it. My old favorites were the 160 and the 175 grain Partitions, but today you can pick from others that are fine too. Stay away from those that break up and you will be fine even if you need to take a quartering shot.

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Originally Posted by saddlesore
I have killed elk witha 7 mag, .06, .308 and a few more. Most with a heavy for caliber bullet or a partition As state the quality of the bullet has a lot to do with breaking shoulders, but am not a fan of that shot.

I have read some guys say they would rather take home half an animal with shot up meat than none. I'd rather wait for abetter shot presentation and take home a whole animal with no blood shot meat
I agree. Wait for a good shot, don't blow up the bones, and don't keep pumping lead. They will fall over soon enough with a lung/heart hit.

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Szihn. That was the big problem when magnums first came on the scene and everyone got magnumitus.The tried to use the same bullets as they did with non-magnums. If it weren't for all the magnums, we probably wouldn't see all the so called premium bullets on the market today.

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I think heavier bullets are better than lighter.

I also think busting the mid scapula compared to the scapula/ humerus junction, will result in more of the DRT effect.

The spine, brachial plexus, and Aorta lie medial to the central scapula region.

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Originally Posted by Plumdog
Originally Posted by saddlesore
I have killed elk witha 7 mag, .06, .308 and a few more. Most with a heavy for caliber bullet or a partition As state the quality of the bullet has a lot to do with breaking shoulders, but am not a fan of that shot.

I have read some guys say they would rather take home half an animal with shot up meat than none. I'd rather wait for abetter shot presentation and take home a whole animal with no blood shot meat
I agree. Wait for a good shot, don't blow up the bones, and don't keep pumping lead. They will fall over soon enough with a lung/heart hit.
I disagree. I've seen some wonky things, even from well-hit elk. I shoot until they drop, and coach others to do the same.

I also coach not to take "raking" shots. I've seen the hind end of a mature deer stop a 200gr Partition from a 300 SAUM from approximately 400 yds. We found that bullet in the guts, having penetrated 10-12". Not at all what I (or the shooter) had expected.


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Originally Posted by saddlesore
I have killed elk witha 7 mag, .06, .308 and a few more. Most with a heavy for caliber bullet or a partition As state the quality of the bullet has a lot to do with breaking shoulders, but am not a fan of that shot.

I have read some guys say they would rather take home half an animal with shot up meat than none. I'd rather wait for abetter shot presentation and take home a whole animal with no blood shot meat
Another +1

I started elk hunting as a meat hunter. I had shoulder mounts of my two best 6x6 bulls, but all of the little white packages of delicious elk meat in my freezer were the real trophys. Now many years later all of that meat has been eaten but I still do enjoy looking at those mounts in my Trophy Room.

Over many years of harvesting elk, I learned to prefer the broadside, right behing the shoulder shot. A little over 10 years ago, I built a .300 Weatherby for my primary elk rifle. The first elk that I shot with it was with a 168 grain TSX bullet. He was standing broadside and I shot him right behind his shoulder. At the shot he jumped about 3 steps and fell dead.

Prior to this .300 Wby, my primary elk rifle was my .30 Gibbs shooting 180 gr Partitions which usually left about a 1' diameter of bloodshot meat around the bullet entrance hole. So I was very pleasantly supprised when the 168 gr TSX bullet from my .300 Wby left less than a fist size amount of bloodshot meat around the bullet entrance hole.
This first picture is the 168 gr TSX bullet entrance, and the second pic is of the bullet exit.
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com] [Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

So a few years later when I shot my second bull elk with my .300 Wby I was shooting 168 gr TTSX bullets. This bull was standing quartering to me just a few feet on my side of a fence that I didn't have permission to hunt on the other side of. Then, because my previous TSX bullet made such a small amount of bloodshot damage, I when against my own rule of shooting behind the shoulder, and I shot this bull on the point of his shoulder.

This bullet hit and shattered the large upper leg bone right at the shoulder blade joint and made about 1' diameter of bloodshot meat through his shoulder. He fell dead where he was standing, but at the price of some pounds of delicious meat.


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Obviously there is heart lung area caudal to the front leg.

But not much.

They got 13 ribs……the diaphragm lies roughly between # 6 and #7. The lower ( more ventral) you go the less lung tissue lies behind ( caudal) to the front leg.

If you use the size of a paper plate for error of you point of impact. And your point of impact is caudal to the scapular humoral junction.

It is my belief some of that paper plate would lie caudal to the thoracic cavity.

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I've just taken my 30th elk this fall, and have been present / helped for just under a hundred elk kills. In my experience, given enough odd opportunities, bullets can do some wonky things.

Broadside thorough the scapula is a shot almost any decent bullet can make on an elk with excellent results. But I try to avoid shooting the humerus/scapua joint because I've experienced that joint stopping some bullets dead, with no further penetration. That's happened twice with 150 grain and once with 165 grain cup and core .308" bullets from .308 and .30-06. Range 80-150 Meters. A few times I have seen similar .270, 7mm and .308" bullets do the job with that placement. But it can be unpredictable.
I have found 250 grain bullets from my .35 Whelen rifles more reliable when that joint is hit. Barnes copper bullets, Nosler partitions and Speer Grand Slams have all done good work.

The oddest incident was a nice little 5 point bull that I shot exactly on the humerus/scapula joint at just under 100 meters with my .375 H&H. Bullet was a 260 gr. Nosler Partition at about 2700 FPS muzzle velocity. The bull was quartering towards me. At the shot there was a loud crack as the bullet hit just where I aimed and he hunched up. I'm not one to "admire my shot" - I shoot again if they are hit but run.

I'm very glad I put another quick shot into him as he ran, even though I shot him the first time in a good spot with a big rifle and good bullet. When we butchered him I was astounded to see the first bullet never entered the chest cavity. Almost the entire scapula was in pieces. The bullet had smashed the humerus/scapula joint, the shock broke the scapula, but the bullet deflected at about a 45° angle along the scapula muscle, upwards and outwards, and lodged near the ribs/backbone/scapula junction. I probably would never have caught up with him if I hadn't shot again.

Those who wrote that .270/7mm/.308 bullets are "plenty" when shooting shoulders aren't wrong, but the devil is in the details.

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Picking the intersection of the center of the neck with the center of the front leg gives you positive landmarks. And easily on an elk a medium pizza plate covers lethal tissue if hit.

Surely blood shot meat is only enjoyed by dogs.

But a gut shot elk may end up enjoyed by none of your family. Only the mountain.


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I wish I would have read this thread before I butchered last night. 308 win, 150 e-tip broke the shoulder joint on a big cow from 50 yards. I ended up throwing a big portion of the near-side shoulder away. Bullet was caught in off side hide behind the main shoulder joint. I'd be curious how that bullet-load combo would do at distance.


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Here is a 165 AB from a 30-06 that was tight in the near side leg and found in the joint in the far side.


[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

That’s a nasty joint no matter how you slice it.


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Oldquailhunter: I have harvested my share of Elk and have NEVER had to shoot one "through the shoulders" - shooting Elk right behind the shoulder through the heart/lungs will render an Elk dead in 6 - 8 seconds and they will have bled out internally/externally! Not making a huge bloody mess of bloodshot and useless meat because of a "shoulder shot".
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Sometimes some people hunt elk in rough country where either A: anchoring one where it stands is important, or B: you may not get a nice broadside shot so you can stay off the shoulders.

I’ve shot them through the shoulders, even one that needed to stop right now because he was wounded and it that caught one up the seat of the pants as he ran straight away.

A bird in the hand and all that

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Dead on the spot, shoulder shot
If he can run 50 yards, heart lung.


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I have photos of a whitetail dissection on image gallery.

How do I post those images here?
Thanks


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I have shot at least 15 bulls with. 7 mag and have never found an elk shoulder it wont smash


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Dober sent me these.

140 Berger, elk knuckle joint at 100 yards

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

60 grain Hornady HP at 100 yards

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

Looks like they would’ve nose dived pretty well from either one.


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Yeah, Dober has changed his mind considerably on elk cartridges since he firmly believed in the .340 Weatherby.

I have occasionally found it worthwhile to use a pretty stout bullet when hunting elk in thicker timber, which some of us used to do in Montana back when they were mostly found there--and occasionally in other places as well.

One was a 6x6 bull, quartering toward me in thick stuff at 75 yards. The realistic shot was through the shoulder joint, and the 200-grain Nosler Partition not only broke the joint but exited at the rear of the ribcage on the opposite side...


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I had a crappy quartering away angle on my bull last week at 285 yards. He stood there after the first round hit him at the back of the rib cage and spiraled into his 15 yard death run when the second round hit him in the base of the neck. He pumped a lot of blood where he was standing and like a garden hose to where he crashed. I don’t have a nice bullet collection as the 168 gr TTSX’s usually exit the dead elk before he hits the ground. You don’t have to shoot such a bullet from a .300 Weatherby, but it sure has worked for me. Zero lost elk, most DRT. Happy Trails


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A whitetail


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Last edited by Angus1895; 11/10/22.

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That post about the 375 amazes me.


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Originally Posted by Angus1895
I think heavier bullets are better than lighter.

I also think busting the mid scapula compared to the scapula/ humerus junction, will result in more of the DRT effect.

The spine, brachial plexus, and Aorta lie medial to the central scapula region.

LOL.

You switch back and forth in posting style better than most.

I agree that staying off the humerous and smacking the scapula/stunning the brachial nerves more often than not drops them.

I have had good luck with 168gr VLDs and 180 VLDs in the 7mm Mag. Never had a lack of penatration on any elk with a 7mm Mag.


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Originally Posted by beretzs
Dober sent me these.

140 Berger, elk knuckle joint at 100 yards

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

60 grain Hornady HP at 100 yards

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

Looks like they would’ve nose dived pretty well from either one.
Shot through an actual elk or shot as a target after boned out?


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Entry pretty much dead on the knuckle. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

Exit visible here. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

270Wby 130gr ETip
This setup has more or less become my go to elk rig and I’ve never had penetration problems regardless of angle or bone encountered. Surely a 7mag is at least as powerful. 😁

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To add to the above here’s a couple pics I took this evening while cutting that quarter up.

The inside of that above pictured joint. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

And a groove cut in the edge of the socket on the bottom of the scapula by the first shot. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

First shot scrambled lungs and I gave him the second when he acted like he was going to move out. After exploding the shoulder knuckle it punched a thumb sized hole through the top of the heart.

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Awesome pics!

Do you like the E tip?

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Originally Posted by TheKid
[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

That right there is why I prefer to avoid the humerous if reasonable to do so. It sure kills critters fine, but those bone fragments and that nasty, gritty bone marrow or whatever it is makes it a PIA to get that meat cleaned up and processed.



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I love the crew that has never hunted, or will hunt a locale with brush over your head, shoot behind the shoulder creedmoor crew on a general tag every year. Not everything is New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado or Utah. Some folks actually hunt, and get to hunt branched bulls every year


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Originally Posted by T_Inman
Originally Posted by TheKid
[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

That right there is why I prefer to avoid the humerous if reasonable to do so. It sure kills critters fine, but those bone fragments and that nasty, gritty bone marrow or whatever it is makes it a PIA to get that meat cleaned up and processed.

Bone dust.

Stay on the scapula and hit the brachial nerve/plexus.

Little meat lost and DRT.


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Correct.
I don't mind a hole through the scapula. It normally doesn't grenade so many bone fragments around and is every bit as effective at putting the critter down. I still prefer tight behind the shoulder shots but that isn't always the shot I get and (as great as I am) I have also been known to not hit right where I aim, believe it or not.



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Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
Awesome pics!

Do you like the E tip?
I love the ETip, or at least the .277 130 as it’s the only one I have experience with but it has been stellar out of the 270Wby.
This one hit a bull quartered away at about 150 yards second rib from the back and came to rest under the hide after going through the opposite shoulder. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

And like Tinman and others have said if given the choice I usually stay higher through the scapula and off the big joint. But sometimes I don’t make the perfect shot. Had I known exactly where the first one landed I might not have sent the follow up, but I probably would have anyway it just happened to land a little lower than I’d planned.

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I’ve never shot anything bigger than a big whitetail buck. May never get to shoot an elk. But, I really enjoy reading posts from people who do have actual experience with shooting them and the loads they use. Thanks guys!

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I allways aim to break the far shoulder on quartering shots or tight behind the shoulder on broadside shots
I want a hole thru the heart and or lungs before busting bones period...mb


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I never worry about the 168 gr TTSX or 175 gr LRX at .300 Weatherby velocity breaking bones or whatever. They blow through whatever portion of the elk they hit. Likewise for the 7mm Weatherby. Jury still out on the 6.5-300 with 127 gr LRX.


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I've shot alot of game with those Barnes, from the first to their last iteration, they are wicked killers! If its a smaller animal, I try to him some bone on purpose. If I hunt in a place where I may have to shoot one on a hard angle, I will use either a mono or a heavy for caliber round nose, i.e a 220 in 30-06 or 310 Woodleigh in the 35 Whelan type. One time I used the Sierra 300 SBT from a 375 H&H on a young cow elk, 200yds. First shot tight behind the shoulder, she just humped up and stood there. Since she was only about 50yds away from a "God-Awful" Hole of a Canyon, I popped her again high shoulders. It made a mess. In that rifle, I dropped back to the 270 Failsafe. Perfect. I was trying the rifle out for an upcoming South Africa Hunt, but I was surprised how soft that Sierra was! I mean, 6" exit holes may thrill some folks, OK, but not for me!

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Most any modern bullet works fine on elk. The damn things aren't bullet proof. Nosler 180gr BT's out out of 300 mags have killed the best for me and Barnes TTSX/LRX snd Nosler E Tip have dug the deepest.
If I want to or have to anchor them right now I shoot them through the scapula above the joint.

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Originally Posted by TheKid
Entry pretty much dead on the knuckle. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

Exit visible here. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

270Wby 130gr ETip
This setup has more or less become my go to elk rig and I’ve never had penetration problems regardless of angle or bone encountered. Surely a 7mag is at least as powerful. 😁
That's a perfect meat bull. I've certainly centered the humerus a few times without meaning to. What speed are you pushing those 130's?


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I'm just hoping I find a good one to apply my 270 on. Hopefully not on an shoulder joint though.

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I try to avoid ruining meat on elk. But a buddy grabbed my 280 loaded with 160 grand slam and shot a cow in the shoulder. It dropped imdeiately.


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Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
I was watching the net the other day and a guy was talking about how good the 7mm Remington magnum was a great all around rifle. The guy went on to say the 7mm Remington magnum was a good elk rifle as long as you shoot them behind the shoulder. He stated that if you keep trying to break elk shoulders with a 7mm Remington it would let you down (he preferred a .33 caliber rifle).

Two things he did not mention was bullet type of range.

I have only hunted elk with a .30 caliber magnum rifle and haven’t killed enough to have a opinion but I just can’t see a quality bullet from 150 grains and up not breaking shoulders.

Anyone have a good quality bullet not make it through a elks shoulder?

I was taught shooting the shoulders ruined meat, consequently if given a choice I'm always a armpit shooter.

Rarely has shooting an elk through the shoulder resulted in elk running any more or less than when shot in the armpit.

Two years ago the only shot I had were on a unaware Utah bull and a unaware Colorado bull shoulder shots at about 60 yds with a 270 and 160g Partition in deep timber. First shot on each bull the bullet went plumb through both shoulders of both bulls, and both bulls ran towards me 40 yds or so. I shot each bull in the chest for a second shot as they were headed my direction. And boy those shoulder shots tore up some meat for sure.

If bullets are not penetrating an elk's shoulder that's a bullet issue rather than a cartridge problem.


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Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
I was watching the net the other day and a guy was talking about how good the 7mm Remington magnum was a great all around rifle. The guy went on to say the 7mm Remington magnum was a good elk rifle as long as you shoot them behind the shoulder. He stated that if you keep trying to break elk shoulders with a 7mm Remington it would let you down (he preferred a .33 caliber rifle).

Two things he did not mention was bullet type of range.

I have only hunted elk with a .30 caliber magnum rifle and haven’t killed enough to have a opinion but I just can’t see a quality bullet from 150 grains and up not breaking shoulders.

Anyone have a good quality bullet not make it through a elks shoulder?


Another chair-borne ranger. Give me a 7mm mag with accubonds, barnes ttsx, hammers partitions swifts and you see what it can do to any shoulder!!!!


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Originally Posted by Magnum_Bob
I allways aim to break the far shoulder on quartering shots or tight behind the shoulder on broadside shots
I want a hole thru the heart and or lungs before busting bones period...mb




^^^^^^^^ This ^^^^^^^^ memtb


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Originally Posted by jc189
Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by MontanaMan
[quote=duke61] 7mm RM is perfectly capable as is 7mm-08 and 270 with proper bullet and range.

This^^^^^^^though I don't really prefer a shoulder joint shot, but just behind when possible.

Most good bullets from adequate chamberings will do just fine. Nosler Partitions have never disappointed.

MM

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

^^^ This ^^^


180gr Nosler Partition found just under the skin behind the far side shoulder (300wsm) 286 yds. First shot was through the boiler room, bullet not recovered. He just stood there and did a little shudder then acted like he wasn't even hit. They sure are impressive animals.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]
That is not a nosler partition.


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^^^^^^^^^^

Agreed

Good catch there buddy!


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Originally Posted by Rock Chuck
I've shot a number of elk with a 30 cal Accu-bond. It'll easily break a shoulder bone on the near side but then it falls apart. The pieces will really tear up things inside, though. One time I found the bullet casing against the far ribs but not the bullet core. It showed up months later when we cooked the heart.
Third bull I ever shot was with my 300 Jarrett shooting 200 grain Accubonds. 168 yard shot through the shoulder, lodged under the hide after penetrating the offside shoulder blade as well. DRT 6x6. I recovered the bullet and it weighed 105 grains. Better than 50% retention after two shoulder blades. I was happy.


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Originally Posted by HuntnShoot
Originally Posted by TheKid
Entry pretty much dead on the knuckle. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

Exit visible here. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

270Wby 130gr ETip
This setup has more or less become my go to elk rig and I’ve never had penetration problems regardless of angle or bone encountered. Surely a 7mag is at least as powerful. 😁
That's a perfect meat bull. I've certainly centered the humerus a few times without meaning to. What speed are you pushing those 130's?
I honestly haven’t chronoed them. 130 Partitions go 3450ish out of this rifle with the same powder so I’d guess somewhere in that neighborhood. They’re the only bullet I’ve used out of the 270 Wby that isn’t really rough on meat.

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Originally Posted by TheKid
Originally Posted by HuntnShoot
Originally Posted by TheKid
Entry pretty much dead on the knuckle. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

Exit visible here. [Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

270Wby 130gr ETip
This setup has more or less become my go to elk rig and I’ve never had penetration problems regardless of angle or bone encountered. Surely a 7mag is at least as powerful. 😁
That's a perfect meat bull. I've certainly centered the humerus a few times without meaning to. What speed are you pushing those 130's?
I honestly haven’t chronoed them. 130 Partitions go 3450ish out of this rifle with the same powder so I’d guess somewhere in that neighborhood. They’re the only bullet I’ve used out of the 270 Wby that isn’t really rough on meat.
Thanks. Impressive performance!


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Originally Posted by Fotis
Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
I was watching the net the other day and a guy was talking about how good the 7mm Remington magnum was a great all around rifle. The guy went on to say the 7mm Remington magnum was a good elk rifle as long as you shoot them behind the shoulder. He stated that if you keep trying to break elk shoulders with a 7mm Remington it would let you down (he preferred a .33 caliber rifle).

Two things he did not mention was bullet type of range.

I have only hunted elk with a .30 caliber magnum rifle and haven’t killed enough to have a opinion but I just can’t see a quality bullet from 150 grains and up not breaking shoulders.

Anyone have a good quality bullet not make it through a elks shoulder?


Another chair-borne ranger. Give me a 7mm mag with accubonds, barnes ttsx, hammers partitions swifts and you see what it can do to any shoulder!!!!

Dang straight! I can’t speak for all those bullets since I’ve never used them, but the 150 gr TTSX at 7mm Weatherby velocity flat out gets it done. Cheers


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Originally Posted by szihn
I have killed a lot of elk in my 55 years of hunting them and in about 1/2 of that time I also guided hunters so I have seen a LOT more killed then those I have killed myself
I have seen them killed with rifles as small as 243s and as large as a 577 Snider, and 62 caliber flintlock.
Bullet construction is far more important then BC, SD, velocity, and all the marketers hype they try to force feed you.

I have killed them with 7X57 Mauser, 7MM Rem Mag and 7MM Weatherby mag. If using good bullets they break the big bones just fine. So does a 270 Winchester with 150grain partitions and the old Remington Core-Lokts and the 160 grain Partitions too. In fact the old Remington bullets were superb.
In my years of guiding the 2 calibers that gave the worst bullet performance overall were the 7 Mags and the 300 Mags and 100% of those failures were because of using bullets that were to fragile for an animal that large. And yet if loaded with proper bullets they all worked like magic.
I took a man out many years ago who came from new Jersey to hunt in the Selway and he shot a bull that ran off a ways. He has a 300 Weatherby Mag and loaded it with 165 grain bullets (I think they were Speer Hot Cores) We caught up to the elk about 500 yards from the place he hit it (still took us about an hour to find it) and I shot it 3 times with my 44 mag. He made a comment how a handgun was worthless if his 300 Weatherby didn't drop it, but was shocked to see all 3 of my round exited his bull and his bullet went only about 14 inches deep and didn't make it to the other lung. Mine were all hits in the mid or rear body as it ran away, and all 3 came out the front of the chest. After that he started to listen when I told him what bullets' to bring.
He hunted with me 4 times in the next years and every time after that he showed up with 220 grain bullets loaded. Never has a problem after that.

That is one of several stories I can relay about such lack of performance and shallow penetration's, but in case of a gal shooting a 243 with Barnes X bullets she did fine. Not all exits, but all went clear through and were on the skin on the off side.

A 7MM mag (or a 7-08 or 7x57) is fine for elk if you load "elk bullets" in it. My old favorites were the 160 and the 175 grain Partitions, but today you can pick from others that are fine too. Stay away from those that break up and you will be fine even if you need to take a quartering shot.

^^^This is all you need to know^^^

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Partitions or bonded bullets are not needed.

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Originally Posted by Jackson_Handy
Partitions or bonded bullets are not needed.

No they aren't--but they sure come in handy at times......


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Originally Posted by TheKid
Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
Awesome pics!

Do you like the E tip?
I love the ETip, or at least the .277 130 as it’s the only one I have experience with but it has been stellar out of the 270Wby.
This one hit a bull quartered away at about 150 yards second rib from the back and came to rest under the hide after going through the opposite shoulder.

And like Tinman and others have said if given the choice I usually stay higher through the scapula and off the big joint. But sometimes I don’t make the perfect shot. Had I known exactly where the first one landed I might not have sent the follow up, but I probably would have anyway it just happened to land a little lower than I’d planned.

That's good to know because after shooting mostly 150g NPt's in my 270W's for the past 35 years I have a large supply of 130g E-Tips I'm going to start using.


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Originally Posted by alpinecrick
Originally Posted by Jackson_Handy
Partitions or bonded bullets are not needed.

No they aren't--but they sure come in handy at times......

When?

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The time I appreciate Nosler partitions is on vintage firearms.

With the open back of the bullet the exposed lead in essence can seal the gasses escape if the crown is suspect …..compared to boat tails.


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Jackson, when it is late in the evening and I want my elk down now, right there. Or on some permits, before they cross into a ranch that is closed to the public. I don't use them all the time, but there are times when they are important to success.
Where I hunt you don't always wait for a picture perfect shot, if you pass on a good chance, you might not get another. Anyone who has hunted elk seriously knows the value of good bullets.


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Originally Posted by WyoCoyoteHunter
Jackson, when it is late in the evening and I want my elk down now, right there. Or on some permits, before they cross into a ranch that is closed to the public. I don't use them all the time, but there are times when they are important to success.
Where I hunt you don't always wait for a picture perfect shot, if you pass on a good chance, you might not get another. Anyone who has hunted elk seriously knows the value of good bullets.


^^^^^^^^^Amen^^^^^^

Having a bit more cartridge/caliber than needed doesn’t hurt either! 😉 memtb


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I am a threw the slats 'chooter. But if I need to anchor'em right then and there, I really like the result of the top of the shoulder to the spine route, much more effective. A shot square into the scapula is a waste, most times they still move and quite well.

But, I have and seen or ran a bullet or 3 ran into shoulders and upper leg bones on occation, its just in the cards. Just a wiggle moves the crosshairs into those objects. My wife killed a big ol' fat cow elk as it walked angling away with the 25-06. Range was around 250 yards as the 100 gr. Partition entered just behind the last rib, caught part of the liver then threw the chest. Heart and lungs were ruined, then on to shatter the upper leg bone and lodge against the hide of the leg. Elk wobbled maybe 20 yards and done. Was quite impressed with how far and what that 100 gr. Bullet had done. IIRC, from point of entry to stop 39 inches of elk had been cleaved by it. If the elk had been quartering toward my wife, she would have placed the bullet just opposite direction.

I/we do not make it a habit to break elk shoulders/leg bones, it just is in the cards. Shot placement first and premium bullets really leans better outcomes your way with heavier boned game.


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I bet one of Elmer Keith's favorite Speer 275 going 2400 from a 338/06, up in the timber (100 or under) would break at least one shoulder! I wonder how that same load would do at 200? Anyone ever shot elk (moose,etc) with the old Speer 275 around that starting speed?

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I thought I read that those 275's were pretty soft bullets?
My be better if with a .250 partition in that scenario.

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The 338 275 speer had no flaws. It was and is as Elmer described. I started them at 2550 from my 338 wm and it killed elk like the hammer of Thor from close to far, 425, the same way. I think with some use of newer powders you could get a 338-06 near that level.

The 270 grain speer in the 9.3 was not great on game. “Soft” wasn’t the problem it was the description. Same bullet but different waistline and nose profile relationship made it open too fast.

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Thanks Fury, I shot alot of those Speer 270s out of my first 9.3x62. Mainly was because I could get them then (late 90s) I like the old semi-pointed, round-nose bullets, makes me feel all warm inside, ha. The rifle I'm having set up only has a 22" barrel. I might be better off trying those Speer 275s in another Win Mag. I was just wondering if they would work on elk out to 250yds or so when started at 2400 (very doable in the 22")

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Used the Norma 143 grain BondStrike for the first time on 2 cow elk this season. No drama, & no bullet recovery, as usual.

Going to build up a pile of the 180 grain version and use the .30-06 next season.

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Originally Posted by WyoCoyoteHunter
Jackson, when it is late in the evening and I want my elk down now, right there. Or on some permits, before they cross into a ranch that is closed to the public. I don't use them all the time, but there are times when they are important to success.
Where I hunt you don't always wait for a picture perfect shot, if you pass on a good chance, you might not get another. Anyone who has hunted elk seriously knows the value of good bullets.

And partitions do that differently than other bullets?

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Better than cup and core.


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Sir,
Your 338-06 gives up maybe a hundred yards to the 338wm with that bullet. Meaning you have no need to worry from the muzzle out to 350 or so, maybe further. I’ve only killed two elk past 350. Plenty at less.

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Here's an example of Partition performance on the heaviest part of an elk shoulder.

Killed this one in 2002, in obviously thick stuff. The shot was about 75 yards, the bull angling toward me, and the "open" shot was at the big joint of the left shoulder. Was using a .300 Winchester Magnum with the 200-grain Partition loaded to around 3000 fps. The bullet not only busted the joint, but exited at the left rear of the ribcage.

[Linked Image]


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First bull elk I killed was a quartering shot with a 270 Win 140 gr accubond at about 200 yds, angled toward the front of the opposite shoulder. To my surprise, the nice 6x6 was dead on his feet, didn't take a step while the herd headed back up the mountain but wobbled for a few seconds so I put a second one into his lungs but it was probably not needed. The last one was a similar sized 6x6 about the same distance, shot was the mirror and I put a 225 gr. partition from my 35 Whelen in about the same spot, angled toward the front of the opposite shoulder. He took a few steps more but essentially the same result. Polar opposite bullets, at least in mind but both performed about the same. Reinforced in my mind that good placement is more important than caliber.

I understand the idea of not getting optimal shots and have taken my share of non-broadside shots in thick stuff with success, just seems if there is any other option, a shoulder would be the last shot to take.

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Mr Knight
Lest I’m misunderstood, the 250 Partition would be a better bet than the 275 Speer in your 338-06.
It gives you more range certainly and has a higher likelihood of perfect performance on elk. We have lots of evidence saying that is true.

What I can’t say is that there is something wrong about using the 275 Speer at 2400 + muzzle velocity on elk. I have no evidence of that to be true.
Best regards to you sir,
F01

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I used the 275 Speer a bit back when I found a few boxes of them for darned near nothin. I used RL22 and got 2675 from them.

I can’t remember but, I believe I found this bullet in the 7th jug, maybe the 8th. I was quite surprised.

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

[Linked Image from hosting.photobucket.com]

I still have a few hundred left. Might need to load some more up and give it a run this fall. I wouldn’t sweat that bullet on shoulders at about about any speed under 2800 FPS impact myself.


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Looks like the only one I ever recovered. 212 grains and shattered 4 vertebrae and top of scapulas. Under hide on far side. 426 yards on my biggest bull.
The butcher said “that is the most bone broken on an elk I have ever seen.” He had butchered many hundred over 20plus years.
All the rest were full penetration and gone.

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Originally Posted by Fury01
Mr Knight
Lest I’m misunderstood, the 250 Partition would be a better bet than the 275 Speer in your 338-06.
It gives you more range certainly and has a higher likelihood of perfect performance on elk. We have lots of evidence saying that is true.

What I can’t say is that there is something wrong about using the 275 Speer at 2400 + muzzle velocity on elk. I have no evidence of that to be true.
Best regards to you sir,
F01

Hey I appreciate it all Chief! ha I found a box of Nosler 210PTs to go with my Speer 200HC and a bunch of the old Nosler 200 Ballistic Tips. I passed on the rebore, and my smith found a place with Savage barrels ( 3 mo wait or so) anyhow, I should be able to get it finished out at 26", then I can experiment, ha. Lots easier to cut off than try to get somewhere with a 22" barrel. I might end up at that length, but at least I'll know by then what a longer barrel can do for me/accuracy wise too, right? Meantime I can play around with its original '06 and some 200-220s and see how it does. If it does "halfway wonderful", I'll leave it alone and pick up a nicer/newer Savage donor. This old rifle had been rode hard and literally put up wet, getting a major overhaul, not what you call a "pride of ownership" rifle per se. smile

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Originally Posted by Fury01
The 338 275 speer had no flaws. It was and is as Elmer described. I started them at 2550 from my 338 wm and it killed elk like the hammer of Thor from close to far, 425, the same way. I think with some use of newer powders you could get a 338-06 near that level.

Actually, even Elmer didn't like the 275 in it's later years, sometimes lamenting how it had changed from "the old, heavy jacket version." He mentioned this more than once in his published writing.


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I have never seen that. I don’t have any Elmer books anymore. I had a library friend we shared books. Wher might I find that?
F01

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Fury01,

Believe it's in either Hell, I Was There! or in the 2-volume set of his Guns & Ammo columns.

Might look myself, if I find it will let you know. But it definitely pissed him off....

John


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I did not shoot, but witnessed the results of two brothers shooting elk with 175g Sierra BTSP in their 7 Mags at 2900. Penetration and bone busting was impressive with the afore mentioned load. We had to quarter them up, packed them out on Mules.

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In Gun Notes Volume II February 1971, Elmer writes in relation to the .338 OKH: 'We have the fine 250-grain Nosler, the 275-grain Speer - my favorite - and the excellent 300-grain softnose Winchester bullets." and "The 250-grain Nosler opens its points more and shows greater expansion than does the 275-grain Speer, and the 300-grain Winchester always expands, hold together, and penetrates deep. For long-range work, I prefer the Nosler and the 275-grain Speer, but for close range heavy game in timber I prefer the 300-grain Winchester round-nose soft point. The Nosler may blow off its soft-point, but the base half always carries on for deep penetration at close range, while the Speer 275-grain expands some at about all ranges but does not blow or fragment and, of course, opens smaller holes through deer-sized game than the more explosive tip of the Nosler." pages 3,4.

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Originally Posted by keith
I did not shoot, but witnessed the results of two brothers shooting elk with 175g Sierra BTSP in their 7 Mags at 2900. Penetration and bone busting was impressive with the afore mentioned load. We had to quarter them up, packed them out on Mules.

I have heard that 175 Sierra is an excellent bullet. I have shot it a bunch out of the Mashburn but never on elk, but enough guys I trust have and I'd give it a whirl. It is an accurate bullet though!


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Thanks John. I’d appreciate it. All of mine were bought in the early 1980’s. I still have a box I think though no longer have a 338.
Best regards,
F01

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Without the valuable input of MIKEWERNER, this thread is useless.

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Originally Posted by Greenhorn
Without the valuable input of MIKEWERNER, this thread is useless.

Holy smokes.. That was good GH! Well played!


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Originally Posted by Greenhorn
Without the valuable input of MIKEWERNER, this thread is useless.


Another thread going to $#!+ in 3..2..1...

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Originally Posted by DropTyne
Originally Posted by Greenhorn
Without the valuable input of MIKEWERNER, this thread is useless.


Another thread going to $#!+ in 3..2..1...

Give him a moment to overcome his inertia.


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mathman.......you owe all your 3rd grade science students a 100% refund.

That means all of it, Greenhorn.

Originally Posted by mathman
Originally Posted by DropTyne
Originally Posted by Greenhorn
Without the valuable input of MIKEWERNER, this thread is useless.


Another thread going to $#!+ in 3..2..1...

Give him a moment to overcome his inertia.


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Bullets do funny things at times.

I was carrying my old pre 64 M70 in .338 mag when two cow elk snuck up to the trail I was on and slipped across. I waited close to 5 minutes before I started to move on when I heard a stick pop...

I backed off into the reprod and got ready, when a 5 point bull stepped up and peaked around a big fir tree at me. I could see from nose to the start of the shoulders and hit him as close to the tree as I could.

That 250 gr Nosler Partition bullet hit the neck bone where it makes that bend to go up to the hump. It tipped the bullet sideways and it came to rest midway through the off side shoulder.

It had barely started to open up when it collided with all that bone and was squished flat. It knocked him down, but he needed another shot to stay there.

I had a couple of boxes of the Speer 275 gr semi pointed bullets all loaded up by the original owner of my rifle. One day I thought I'd just burn a few of them up to see how they shot. I was super impressed, as they turned out to be the most accurate bullet I'd shot to date in that rifle..... They also kicked pretty good and I saw little reason to use them.

My favorite .338 bullet was the Hornady 225 gr spire point. It did all I needed to do to an elk.


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I found those 275’s were real accurate as well. If I have the time I’d like to load a few in my Alaskan with some RL26 and see what it does. My old one loved them with R22. I’d bet 26 gets a bit more speed as well. Be fun to hunt with the old bullets. I’d imagine they won’t bounce off an elk.


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I asked on another forum, but what do you guys think of the 338WM and the Hornady 225 CX? Think it will act like the Barnes 225 TTSX? With bullets being so scarce, I have been hanging on to these 225 CX. I sold the Ruger 77 before I could try them in it. Now, I "might" have located another 338WM, and I can get into it for less than rebarreling this Savage 06 to 338/06! I love my 300WM but what I like for timber (and openings up to 250yds) in mind and like to use a thumper.

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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Originally Posted by Fury01
The 338 275 speer had no flaws. It was and is as Elmer described. I started them at 2550 from my 338 wm and it killed elk like the hammer of Thor from close to far, 425, the same way. I think with some use of newer powders you could get a 338-06 near that level.

Actually, even Elmer didn't like the 275 in it's later years, sometimes lamenting how it had changed from "the old, heavy jacket version." He mentioned this more than once in his published writing.

The last bull OL Elmer killed was with the 275 in a 338KT. Killed the spike bull but blew the 275 to dust.

500yds.

These days a 6.5MM Creedmoor with 130gr VLDs is a better 500yd elk cartidge than the .338 KT spitting 275gr Speers.

Time changes and elk are easy enough to kill with good shot placement and elk shoulders are no problem.


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I see the butthurt over not knowing the difference between moment of inertia and linear momentum is still strong.


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Even Elmer could be the victim of a single bullet failure.
I don’t think there is are many bullets made that have not had an anomalous performance example.
The next time I go elk hunting should I be so fortunate, I’ll have my 260 rem and a 140 nosler pt. My old man gun I call it. I would prefer the 120-130 Barnes tsx but not enough to ignore the stack of Nosler pt’s in ammo can.
Is it better than my long gone Ruger #1 338wm and the 275 Speer? I don’t believe so but I know it will do the job if I do mine.

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If there's one thing you do have experience with......it's linear momentum and butt pain.

Originally Posted by mathman
I see the butthurt over not knowing the difference between moment of inertia and linear momentum is still strong.


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Only from pitching it to you.


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Your mathematical prowess is only surpassed by your advanced wit.

Originally Posted by mathman
Only from pitching it to you.


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Originally Posted by MIKEWERNER
Your mathematical prowess is only surpassed by your advanced wit.


Keep at it Mike, and some day you'll be the equal of mathman in this respect.


You're halfway there.



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Man!

I was enjoying this thread!


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Originally Posted by OGB
Man!

I was enjoying this thread!

Welcome to the campfire!

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Each day provides the opportunity for a new start. It just a choice.
So; I often used as an aiming point, for my bullets path through the vitals, the off leg. This sometimes broke shoulder bones from high to low depending on that animal’s position. I tried to plan on having a bullet and rifle that allowed that to happen. I think that is a solid plan for elk.
The anomalies in that plan were few and I was fortunate to be carrying a rifle and bullet that could handle them.
Best regards gentlemen,
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This thread only needs contribution from one more member to make it a true campfire thread. Hint…


Selmer

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Was with a buddy yesterday when he shot an old, dry cow elk. He shot just as she started to move and she dropped at the shot. We thought that he had spined her. He actually hit her right rear hip, shattering it completely and continued into her left hip, breaking it as well. Then the bullet either turned and got the liver or the exploding pelvis bones did. .300 RUM, 180 partition at about 3400 fps, 130 yards, lost alot of meat in both hindquarters. It was a bad shot, but she was dead within seconds.

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I did the same thing (sorta, kinda) with a 375 H&H 270 Failsafe on a running warthog in South Africa. I was surprised it died instantly! Now, I grant you, a cow elk is much bigger, ha, but the effect was the same.
When you read of Elmer Keith shooting elk in the "rump shell", it was usually because a. it was the only shot he had and b. it was survival. He had to have that meat... its always hard to see ruined meat, but it just happens sometimes, even if we really don't need it to survive.

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Originally Posted by selmer
This thread only needs contribution from one more member to make it a true campfire thread. Hint…


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How many times a day do you dye your pom-poms?

Originally Posted by smokepole
Keep at it Mike, and some day you'll be the equal of mathman in this respect.

You're halfway there.


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Mike, you need to change your sig line.

Nobody ever asks how you're doing.



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no words of wisdom here ,but i used these Hammer bullets this year they seem very impressive so far on deer , but i have not shot a bull elk yet with a Hammer bullet either but i have shot 2 medium bulls and 1 giant bull that scored 376 B.C. with my bow so i see know reason why a good bullet won`t work just fine . if all else fails for you just go back to the old Nosler partitions or the new Hammer bullets ? i have skinned and capped 100`s of animals including some huge bull elk , the only bullet that i would not ever use again is a Remington Cor-Lok i have seen some poor things in the body of an animal with this bullet ,makes me shake my head. i am not a writer or work for any company so i can say the truth what i and some others have seen.


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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Here's an example of Partition performance on the heaviest part of an elk shoulder.

Killed this one in 2002, in obviously thick stuff. The shot was about 75 yards, the bull angling toward me, and the "open" shot was at the big joint of the left shoulder. Was using a .300 Winchester Magnum with the 200-grain Partition loaded to around 3000 fps. The bullet not only busted the joint, but exited at the left rear of the ribcage.

[Linked Image]

Perfect. However, I wonder if a non-partition bullet, perhaps a match bullet, would do the same thing?........

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Originally Posted by Jackson_Handy
Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Here's an example of Partition performance on the heaviest part of an elk shoulder.

Killed this one in 2002, in obviously thick stuff. The shot was about 75 yards, the bull angling toward me, and the "open" shot was at the big joint of the left shoulder. Was using a .300 Winchester Magnum with the 200-grain Partition loaded to around 3000 fps. The bullet not only busted the joint, but exited at the left rear of the ribcage.

[Linked Image]

Perfect. However, I wonder if a non-partition bullet, perhaps a match bullet, would do the same thing?........

No dog in this one, but which match bullet would you use to do the same thing? Or try?

We’ve used the 220 Scenar from RUMs and 30 Noslers but only on deer and black bear so I’m all ears.


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Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by Jackson_Handy
Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Here's an example of Partition performance on the heaviest part of an elk shoulder.

Killed this one in 2002, in obviously thick stuff. The shot was about 75 yards, the bull angling toward me, and the "open" shot was at the big joint of the left shoulder. Was using a .300 Winchester Magnum with the 200-grain Partition loaded to around 3000 fps. The bullet not only busted the joint, but exited at the left rear of the ribcage.

[Linked Image]

Perfect. However, I wonder if a non-partition bullet, perhaps a match bullet, would do the same thing?........

No dog in this one, but which match bullet would you use to do the same thing? Or try?

We’ve used the 220 Scenar from RUMs and 30 Noslers but only on deer and black bear so I’m all ears.

Well a 140gr eldm at 50ish yards worked pretty well for me this year. Broke the on-side shoulder and exited....

Then a few days later, damned if it didn't happen again at about 200yds on another bull. 140eldm, broken shoulder, and exit...

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Thanks JH. Was not questioning if it could happen I was just wondering what you’d used or seen used.

That’s pretty bad ass it smashed that knuckle joint and trucked out the far side. That’s no easy feat for any bullet.

Thanks for the intel.


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Originally Posted by beretzs
Thanks JH. Was not questioning if it could happen I was just wondering what you’d used or seen used.

That’s pretty bad ass it smashed that knuckle joint and trucked out the far side. That’s no easy feat for any bullet.

Thanks for the intel.

Sorry, wasn't trying to be a jerk or anything.

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Nope, didn’t take it that way at all.

Anytime I can learn from others about how the different bullets work is cool with me.

Which cartridge did the 140 get launched from?


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Originally Posted by Jackson_Handy
Originally Posted by beretzs
Originally Posted by Jackson_Handy
Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Here's an example of Partition performance on the heaviest part of an elk shoulder.

Killed this one in 2002, in obviously thick stuff. The shot was about 75 yards, the bull angling toward me, and the "open" shot was at the big joint of the left shoulder. Was using a .300 Winchester Magnum with the 200-grain Partition loaded to around 3000 fps. The bullet not only busted the joint, but exited at the left rear of the ribcage.

[Linked Image]

Perfect. However, I wonder if a non-partition bullet, perhaps a match bullet, would do the same thing?........

No dog in this one, but which match bullet would you use to do the same thing? Or try?

We’ve used the 220 Scenar from RUMs and 30 Noslers but only on deer and black bear so I’m all ears.

Well a 140gr eldm at 50ish yards worked pretty well for me this year. Broke the on-side shoulder and exited....

Then a few days later, damned if it didn't happen again at about 200yds on another bull. 140eldm, broken shoulder, and exit...

I saw piss pour results from 178 eldx's from a .308 on a caribou and .30-06 on a moose, both at close range. I'll never use them.

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I used the 147 ELD on deer from the 6.5CM launched at 2775 on deer for a season. It was awesome on deer, typically awesome blender effect and I never caught one but I never shot anything really on a tough angle or drilled heavy bone. I thought they were awesome on deer. The 212 ELD from the 06 was awesome on elk, that bullet hammered a leg bone but was caught on the hide on the far side.

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Jackson Handy,

Interesting information--but when you say the bullets broke the shoulder, what part of the shoulder did they break?


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Shoulders can be a great place to put a bullet in the right situation or a terrible place, depending on a lot of factors you can't always control..

About 3 years ago my brother and I were hunting cow elk and came across a couple traipsing through the woods. I got to a vantage point first and a cow popped it's head out, but it was downhill from us fairly steeply. I shot aiming for the shoulder and the elk ran off and led us for a long chase of at least a mile, leaving a scant blood trail. When we finally caught up to her and ended the chase, I found the 338 WM placed the 225 Partition exactly where I aimed, but it deflected along the shoulder blade and came out the bottom of the belly, below any vital organs but did rupture the lungs only slightly on the lowest edge. Almost no meat damage and we got lucky and she fell about a half mile from a road and my other brother, son, and nephew were available to help drag it out. Had a similar experience with my son's 300 H&H AI on an elk a few days later shooting 180 Hornady Interlocks. Never did find that one and I was watching when the bullet hit the shoulder at a quartering away shot. The ripples of the bullet impact started at the shoulder and went all the way to her back hips and the blood trail was enormous but obviously not sufficient damage to vital organs. We searched for miles with everyone in camp (6 of us) ...

I prefer to put them in the lungs, but sometimes you take the shot that is presented to you...


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All these stories about odd happenings when a bullet seems to be placed correctly but the bullet has other ideas.... That's why I almost always keep shooting until they fall over!
Please forget about bragging of your "one shot" kills, and don't worry so much about holes in good meat or trophy capes. Odd things happen, and an extra hole or two is just good insurance. To prove my point, watch videos of guided hunts, especially in Africa. The guide almost always has to say "shoot again" because so may hunters are in the habit of admiring their shots, are not prepared to shoot again, and haven't trained to shoot again quickly and effectively on moving, wounded game.
I'll gladly take the elk on the ground with two or three holes in it vs the one in the bush with a hole in it somewhere....

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I believe in that theory also castnblast, but sometimes you just don't get a chance at a second shot... my son's elk was in a herd of about 30 elk trotting through the woods and after his shot all heck broke loose... no chance for a follow up shot without hitting another elk... just as an example...


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Originally Posted by Mule Deer
Jackson Handy,

Interesting information--but when you say the bullets broke the shoulder, what part of the shoulder did they break?

It looked like on my elk the bullet impacted directly on the spine the runs along the scapula, but it was so phugged up it was kinda hard to tell. On my buddies bull (using my gun/ammo) I don't know as I didn't process it, just quartered and packed it out.

With the damage/trauma I observed, I have zero doubts when it comes to that combo (140 eldm / 6.5 creed). It didn't "blow up" at close range, that's for sure.

But by all means, shoot what you want.

As a disclaimer I did shoot my bull more than once. I shot him two more times off hand as he ran from my left to right. Two follow up shots were in the lungs behind the shoulder and also exited. My buddies just did the dead shuffle after the shoulder shot, on follow up damn near same hole and he dropped. He didn't go anywhere.

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I think you misinterpreted my post about the 200-grain Partition--or didn't pay attention to the details.

It hit the "big shoulder joint," which on a mature elk is about the size of a softball, and not only consists of some of the hardest and thickest bone on an elk, but major ligaments that help hold it together. The bullet not only broke the joint into pieces, but the shot was NOT broadside, instead quartering to me. The bullet then went through both lungs and EXITED the rear of the ribcage on the opposite side of the bull--after penetrating at least three feet of elk beyond the shoulder joint.

That is not anywhere close to the same thing you just described. I am NOT saying those bullets' performance won't work. I have killed quite a few big game animals with Hornady bullets of various kinds, including both kinds of ELDs, some from from the 6.5 Creedmoor--and have been standing alongside hunting partners who did the same.

A good example is the 300-pound mule deer buck I killed in New Mexico a few years ago, with the 143 ELD-X. The range was only 100 yards, and the buck was standing broadside in a patch of Gambel oak where the only exposed shot was the "high shoulder." The buck dropped, and it turned out the bullet had broken both shoulder blades and the spine, ending up under the hide on the far side.

But nothing you describe is anything close to how that 200-grain Partition performed on a mature bull elk.


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I'm sorry, but I don't think the "big shoulder joint" is made out of different bone. It's an elk. You use what you want, but from my experience there isn't a shot on a "mature bull" I wouldn't take from muzzle velocity to 1800fps with a 140eldm..143...147 whatever. Partitions or bonded bullets aren't a necessity and probably actually cause less trauma vs a cup/core type bullet.


It's works, because elk aren't bullet proof.

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Thanks very much for your response, because it provides me with an excuse to write an essay on this entire subject--which I'll get paid for.

One of the interesting things about this subject is how few elk hunters have actually pre-tested various bullets at different velocities on various sorts of bone, including fresh shoulder joints. I started doing that a while ago, along with a friend who was interested in the same thing.

You're right--elk shoulder joints are still elk bone. But in any fairly large animal they are somewhat differently constructed, due to being weight-bearing. In fact, one basic zoological principle is that both bone and, especially, larger joints increase in thickness at the square of the rate of overall animal weight increase--along with being harder.

Have considerable experience with ELDs, especially in 6.5mm. They're very good bullets--but they're still cup-and-cores. And have seen at least four cup-and-core big game bullets of various brands from 120-150 grain fail to penetrate beyond the shoulder joint of deer, even at moderate velocities. Their remains were all found just behind the joint, lying against the ribcage. In fact, have even seen so-called premium bullets do the same thing when placed in the shoulder joint of buffalo. But that's another subject....

Thanks again!


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Shouldn’t I get a cut for starting this mess…lol

I would like to see a article on this done. Start with the 243 Winchester and end up with the 338 Winchester with a 257 weatherby and a few other high velocity cartridges thrown in. I think it would be very interesting.

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Looking forward to this article ...


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Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
Shouldn’t I get a cut for starting this mess…lol

I would like to see a article on this done. Start with the 243 Winchester and end up with the 338 Winchester with a 257 weatherby and a few other high velocity cartridges thrown in. I think it would be very interesting.

I will let you know how 6mm match bullets do around oct/Nov...my guess is, just fine out to waaay further than I'm willing to shoot. (700yds +)

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Originally Posted by Jackson_Handy
Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
Shouldn’t I get a cut for starting this mess…lol

I would like to see a article on this done. Start with the 243 Winchester and end up with the 338 Winchester with a 257 weatherby and a few other high velocity cartridges thrown in. I think it would be very interesting.

I will let you know how 6mm match bullets do around oct/Nov...my guess is, just fine out to waaay further than I'm willing to shoot. (700yds +)


I think they might do ok at distance but how do you think they will do at 50 yards? In my opinion that’s were bullets will be separated.

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Particularly with a direct hit on a shoulder joint...

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Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
Originally Posted by Jackson_Handy
Originally Posted by Oldquailhunter
Shouldn’t I get a cut for starting this mess…lol

I would like to see a article on this done. Start with the 243 Winchester and end up with the 338 Winchester with a 257 weatherby and a few other high velocity cartridges thrown in. I think it would be very interesting.

I will let you know how 6mm match bullets do around oct/Nov...my guess is, just fine out to waaay further than I'm willing to shoot. (700yds +)


I think they might do ok at distance but how do you think they will do at 50 yards? In my opinion that’s were bullets will be separated.

I suspect they'll do fine from muzzle velocity to 1800fps. If I get the opportunity I'll see...for "science".

Gasp....not the shoulder joint! 😱

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A very interesting, informative and entertaining thread. I have come to the conclusion that many here need to study the anatomy and skeletal structure of an elk.

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I was on an elk hunt in NM about 12 or 15 years ago and after I had tagged out on a nice bull my guide and I helped another hunter track down a bull he had wounded. We finally caught up with the poor bastard and killed it after he had shot it 5x at various ranges and at various angles. I can't remember all the details, but I do remember he was shooting a 300 Win Short Mag and 165 grain Winchester Ballistic silvertips. Not one of the bullets penetrated any big bones or got to any vitals and the elk was running around the mountains with various horrible flesh wounds when we finally caught up with the elk and killed it. I asked the hunter why he chosen that particular load to shoot and he told me it was the most accurate of various factory ammo he had tried. I killed my bull on that hunt with 2 rounds out of my 300 Win mag at 425 and 440 yards respectively with 180 grain NPs. One shot went entirely though the bull breaking his off leg between the shoulder and elbow on the way out and the other all the way though hanging up on the offside hide after breaking his off shoulder.

How does this relate to this thread? In my experience, when you are shooting at large animals with thick hides and heavy bones protecting their vitals, accuracy is important, but not as important as bullet construction and performance.

Just my humble opinion.


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How thick are elk hides? How heavy are the bones?

Hyperbole and Fudd lore rule the day!

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I'll play. 140 match bullet impact velocity around 1800. Bull elk on and offside shoulders. Never took a step.

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2 years ago- first bull with my 26 Nosler. Launched a 140 Accubond at around 3400 fps - high broadside shoulder shot as this spike was in a large herd and I didn't want it to run off with the herd. Impact velocity was probably over 3000 fps at the 127 yards distance he was at. Accubond went through both shoulder blades, a rib on each side, just nicked the bottom of the spine and was found on the far side just under the skin. Bullet was a perfect mushroom but did very little damage to meat and didn't penetrate the far side skin...


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