Barnes 225gr TTSX performance



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  • Barnes 225gr TTSX performance

    Seems a lot of threads talk about bullet terminal performance. Here's a quick report on how the 225gr TTSX did on a large buffalo when shot out of my .338 Win Mag.

    I'd hoped to write this about the performance of cast bullet reloads from my Redhawk 44, but due a shortage in time as we came out of a BB hunt and uncooperative buffalos, I holstered my Redhawk and asked my brother for my 338. I wasn't getting inside of 87 yards, and that's too far for the Redhawk .44 mag on a buffalo.

    Shot was taken at 100 yards, and the buffalo was a mature bull at about 2000lbs. I feel that's pretty accurate given the yield of about 625-675lbs of meat between my brother's half and mine. That matches up with F&G's estimate of 680lbs from a 2000lb animal. Shot placement was right behind the shoulder, and the bullet hit a rib entering and exiting. I fully expected the bullet to exit at that range, but it came to rest under the hide. The bullet did it's job, and given the performance of this tough bullet, I wonder what a lesser bullet would have done.

    I don't own a chronograph yet, but my cartidge is filled with 69gr of IMR-4350, Fed 215 primer, with a 225gr TTSX. Barrel length is 21" to the receiver, and that includes the chamber. My guess is velocity is around 2800ft/s.

    Tough animal!

    Here's a couple pictures of the bullet.

    And here's a picture of the buff.

  • #2
    I really like those bullets too. Hope to put one in a black bear and maybe even a brown bear this next week. Will be shooting it in .300 WSM. Thanks for the report and pics. Nice Ta-Tonka!



    • #3
      Very nice buffalo and nice photos as well. You can't hope for better bullet performance.

      JMO, but given your parameters, I bet your MV was closer to 2700 than 2800. Dead is dead and there's no arguing with your results. Nice job.
      Foolishness is a moral category, not an intellectual one.


      • #4
        Nice one, any luck with the bear? What is your plan with head and hide?


        • #5
          Thanks guys.

          1Cor, I forgot to mention I bought the slick 225's for improved velocity.

          Actually, I'll bet your very close. With the shorter barrel, I know I lost some velocity, but I decided it was better than keeping the muzzle brake. Rifle shoots well, and like you said.... the rig did it's job. I don't think the big boy would have known the diff between 2800 and 2700.

          Also, forgot to mention bullet was 219.2gr, 97.4% retention. Looks like I lost about 0.230 off the end of one petal. I think the the bullet may have lost it's stability before hitting the opposite rib and didn't hit it straight on.


          • #6
            dieNqvrs, Brother didn't get a bear, but we had opportunities.....just zigged when we should have zagged in our planning. Saw bears each day, and some were good ones. Might have been a little better if we arrived a few days later, but can't complain about the weather. It rained some, but never very badly. No high winds either.

            I decided to cut the hide so it is squared up. Removed the legs, which left me with a rectangular hide that's 6-1/2' across and 8' long. Going to get it tanned at one of two tannery's for $350 or less. Depends on which I pick. Almost done salting it. Decided to strip the skull and have Ken Hansen here in Kodiak let his beetles clean it. I'll make a nice European mount out of it.

            FYI since you've expressed interest. The meat flavor is spectacular. Best I've had. However, it's a bit tough. No doubt a result from shooting an older and bigger bull. Will explore some marinades on the steaks. Roasts, hamburger, and ground italian sausage should be wonderful!


            • #7
              Originally posted by HuntKodiak View Post
              Actually, I'll bet your very close. With the shorter barrel, I know I lost some velocity, but I decided it was better than keeping the muzzle brake. Rifle shoots well, and like you said.... the rig did it's job. I don't think the big boy would have known the diff between 2800 and 2700.
              My sentiments exactly. 100 fps difference in MV makes about as much difference in terminal performance as the change in your pocket makes difference in your mortgage payment. Proper shot placement with a proper bullet simply kills; all else is dubitable IMO.
              Foolishness is a moral category, not an intellectual one.


              • #8
                Nice bison for sure!

                Your bullet experience mirrors mine even though many guys claim the Barnes Bullets zip on through.


                • #9
                  super thick leather will really slow bullets down..moose, buff, and even mt goat will hold more bullets than bears every day of the week. the hide is very elastic and will give alot not letting a bullet thats expanded out without a fight.
                  Master guide 212


                  • #10
                    Super thick leather......that's for darn sure!!!!!! I was amazed at the thickness of the skin, and it got thicker and thicker the farther forward we got on the animal. It sure gave the knives a workout. I've never skinned a brown bear before, but it's gotta be easier than cutting through a buffalo's hide.

                    That being said, and since this is my thread, I'm going to take a detour for some comic relief. Now I warn you, if you are drinking a cup of coffee or something else, put it down. Before my brother and Brian chime spill the beans on this, I'm going to do it myself first.

                    We'd been skinning and butchering the buff for about 1-2 hours by doing our typical field butchering process. We removed the hide from one side first and then were removing the meat without opening the chest cavity. My brother started to remove the hind quarter, and then I heard him say crap! :eek: In the process, he'd somehow created a small hole into the abdominal cavity, and the pressure inside the abdomin had pushed some of the intestines out the hole and covered the area where the hind qtr ball socket is at. Fortunately, no intestines cut and no contamination, but he couldn't proceed because the intestines were in the way. So, we removed the backstrap and decided the abdomin was growing much quicker than we'd ever experienced. It was starting to look like that old road kill you've seen on the side of the road. It was amazing!

                    Therefore, we needed to open him up and get the inerds out. His gut was extremely tight, and now we're planning on how best to do this without making a mess that we would have to work in. You know the deal, slope of the land, etc.

                    So my brother and I start to veeeerrrry carefully work our way through the abdominal wall. I focused my efforts up by the sternum for minimal risk, and he was working about a foot behind me. Before long we'd both gotten through. So I moved around behind my brother with my Kershaw that has the big skinning blade and large gut hook on it to carefully work my way back along the abdomin. The gut hook should make this a breeze now that we had a hole started. Was making good progress when all of a sudden "boom"!!! I suddenly found myself coated with green stomach contents when the back side of my knife tip must have nicked the stomach wall creating a weak spot. The pressure inside created a 3" hole in the stomach that acted like a nozzle directing this wonderful (and aromatic) assortment of grean grass onto my hip waders, pant tops, shirt front, arms, my white beard, and face some too. :upset: And can you believe it? All those two suckers could do was laugh their butts off at me. Fortunately, their hands were covered in blood, otherwise I'm sure there would be pictures circulating.

                    So, for those of you who are planning on killing a buffalo in the future, I think the nature of the beast is such that all the grass in the multiple stomachs must continue to ferment and cause gas to build quickly. As such, spilling the chest and abdomin of its contents before too much time passes is probably the best course of action.......unless you want to look like the Hulk!


                    • #11
                      I have killed a couple of caribou that did the same thing, without the spew and mess . Before I had the top side skinned they had bloated so tight I could not comfortably gut them until I removed the ribcage.

                      I think that process and potential holds to all ungulates, it may be more directly related to how much time has passed since they had last eaten, for the 2 caribou I had the experience with had just finished grazing when the rifle went off.


                      • #12
                        Yeah, both the buffs that I had a choice to shoot had just finished eating and had laid down to chew their cud when I so rudely interrupted them. I also think that because the buff has a large capacity for greens, it has more to gas up. I've seen bloating before, but this was ridiculous.

                        Hope to help some benefit from my bullet performance too. Once one steps into the realm of bigger bones and more mass, I think the normal core bullets will have a tough time doing a good job. Doesn't mean some haven't done so cause I know they have, but doing so puts a person on the edge of acceptable performance. If I'd missed one of the ribs, I'm sure my bullet would have passed through, and if one misses a rib on entrance, a normal core bullet would work. No way to guarantee that'll happen though.


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