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Thread: Bear Protection; interesting read.

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    Default Bear Protection; interesting read.

    I know it is a bit out dated and ballistics have come a long way but for what its worth it is an interesting read.
    http://www.fs.fed.us/pnw/pubs/pnw_gtr152.pdf

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    Talking interesting

    Well, I am with them as far as the .458, .460 and .375 being great coastal brown bear guns. After that I would rank things differently. I would have ranked the .45 70 higher particularly since "the 24 inches of penetration was the highest found in the test." Those slow pokes make a wide wound channel and keep on going.....
    I come home with an honestly earned feeling that something good has taken place. It makes no difference whether I got anything, it has to do with how the day was spent. Fred Bear

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    I've seen that report before and its a very good read. I wonder how newer bullet technology would affect the results? It seems that most of the higher speed cartridges were negatively effected by bullet failure. I don't recall what (if any) specific bullet types were listed but I'm thinking they were all cup and core types.

    Not disputing that a .375 makes a great bear gun but a .300 or .338 loaded with TSX or TBBC couldn't be a bad choice either.

    Bullet technology has come a long way since this test was done.

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    Member tccak71's Avatar
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    That was a good article. I'm a fan of the '06 & .444 and was surprised to see what they had to say about both. I'm convinced I can take a grizz (incidental, in addition to moose) with my .444 with a good, solid handloaded 300-330g bullet (that's my winter project), although my buddy says no. 338 has been my go to gun but I'd like to do more hunting with both the '06 & 444.

    It would be interesting to see a contemporary version of this study.

    Tim

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    Premium Member MarineHawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hodgeman View Post
    I've seen that report before and its a very good read. I wonder how newer bullet technology would affect the results? ... Bullet technology has come a long way since this test was done.
    A lot. Yes. I've seen this article countless times in the last 20 years. It has a lot of good information. But the bullets available in the 1980s were a lot different, especially with respect to higher-velocity rounds, including the .300 and .338 mags. As far as I can tell, nothing like the monometal expanding bullets now available were tested. For one example, I KNOW my .375 Wby with a 300gr Nosler Partition (available back then but I don't think was tested) at just north of 2,600fps (i.e., at 97 yds) WILL penetrate about 30 inches of brown bear, including some bone along the way, and exit. You wouldn't get that from the data tables. I also would be willing to bet that, with heavy TSX bullets or the like, the .300 Wby and Win mags would outperform a 30-06 even on those test. Another thing is that on a big animal like a bear, once the bullet penetrates into the thorax, it will keep going at least until it hits bone or hide on the other side. There's some emprical testing to support this. But, if you don't believe me, has anyone ever recovered a bullet in the heart/lung area? I think it's rare. Usually on the far side. Thus, unlike the testing, which is useful to some extent, the penetration on a big mammal is not linear. Once the bullet gets into the soft tissue in the chest cavity, it already has accomplished most of its penetrating task, and then it keep going through that region until it hits something hard on the other side. There may be rare exceptins, including when hunting things over 2,000 lbs, but I think it's rare. Just my $0.02.

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    Thanks mallardman, I printed it for the "file". Hard to believe 1983 is OLD info.

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    Premium Member MarineHawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knikglacier View Post
    Thanks mallardman, I printed it for the "file". Hard to believe 1983 is OLD info.
    1983 is about the time, as an adolescent, when I really started dreaming of big game hunting. I still have a lot of books and mags from that time frame--the early 1980s, including the ones listing rifle and ammo availability and ones discussing terminal effects of cartridge, bullet, and ammo types. The differences are pretty extreme. By analogy, at that time, using any .45 ACP ammo other than ball ammo for self defense was a radical, practically crazy idea, which was regularly laughed at in the gun publications. Take a look now: http://www.midwayusa.com/browse/Brow...rOfResults=100

    Also, I would rather have many of these options (http://www.midwayusa.com/browse/Brow...rOfResults=100) than anything commercially available in 1983 to stop a big bear. Though, I'm still dissapointed Federal a few years ago discontinued the 200gr NP HE loads--which could be the best .300 Win Mag DG load ever commercially produced in that cartridge; with a slightly-smaller diameter, it came close to equalling the .338 210gr loads. In any event, that came and went long after 1983. In 1983, most of the people hunting large animals with the .300 Win Mag did so with conventional soft points. IMO, that turned the extra velocity of the .300 Win Mag into a liability, instead of an advantage, but manymodern bullets actually harness the extra velocity, instead of coming apart.

    IMO, some (not all) gun manufacturers had better QC at the time, but that's a different matter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarineHawk View Post
    In 1983, most of the people hunting large animals with the .300 Win Mag did so with conventional soft points. IMO, that turned the extra velocity of the .300 Win Mag into a liability, instead of an advantage, but manymodern bullets actually harness the extra velocity, instead of coming apart.

    IMO, some (not all) gun manufacturers had better QC at the time, but that's a different matter.
    Pretty much sums it up right there I'd say.
    It was telling that the .358 Win faired better than the .350RM. The bullets tested just wouldn't stay together at the higher velocities.
    A good read none the less.
    Never wrestle with a pig.
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    One of the more interesting oddities that I saw was that the .45LC 255gr only had 825ft/sec and 386 ft/lbs penetrated the seconed fathest out of the handguns.

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    I have seen some screwed up comparisions before but this one's unreal. The bullet weights for the 338 are at the top end (300gr ) and the 358 Norma a very similar round shooting 250s. And to put the 308Win and the 7mmRem Mag above the 358Norma is silly. Likewise using a 250gr in the 350 Rem Mag would change things quite a bit. The 30/06 with 220s is a good bear round but the 8mm Mau would be eaqually as good with a similar bullet. And testing the 41mag with the lead police loads is like testing the 357 with 38Spl loads. This test is apples to oranges so bad it is worthless.

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