What grain bullet for whitetail

Discussion in 'Hunting Forum' started by bigred61, Sep 3, 2013.

  1. bigred61

    bigred61 New Member

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    Going on my first whitetail hunt this October, pretty exciting. I am actually pretty new to the whole hunting scene in general. This will be my second season going, first season shooting ;)

    Anyway I am going to be using my AR. I know there is a lot of discussion about hunting with .223/5.56. That is not the purpose of this post though. I am confident in my shooting ability and will be working at max 200yds.

    So my question is about grain size, 55 seems to be the standard, I was thinking a 65 or even 70 grain 5.56 would be good? I dont know if they even make them that heavy. I also worry about velocity, will the heavier grain shorten my effective range?

    Any suggestions would be appreciated!

    Thanks,

    Ashton
     
  2. Shade

    Shade New Member

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    First make sure you can use .223 Remington ammo in your state for whitetail only a few states allow it. I would suggest 70-90 grains. I use Barnes Tsx 70 gr with excellent results, WI allows .22 centerfire rifle for whitetail.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2013

  3. bigred61

    bigred61 New Member

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    Thanks for the suggestion. In Idaho you can shoot Mule and white with .223.
     
  4. kryptar19

    kryptar19 New Member

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    If you are getting off the shelf ammo, get the 65gr Hornady whitetail. Best SP on the market, IMO.
     
  5. Shade

    Shade New Member

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    Cool beans.

    I used to use a lot of Nosler Partitions, still a very good bullet.
    But I have really grown to like the Barnes TSX bullets for all
    my hunting needs, no tracking with them.

    With good glass you can get out farther than 200 yds, if you have
    a flat top upper receiver. I will shoot at coyote at 300-400 yds.
     
  6. nchunt101

    nchunt101 New Member

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    Federal Fusion MSR .556 62 grain has casued a lot of DRT deer in NC
     
  7. limbkiller

    limbkiller New Member

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    What is the rate of twist in your barrel. 1in9 is good up to 62 grains. you will need 1 in 7 or 1 in 8 to stabilize heavier bullets. Accuracy will suffer.
     
  8. bigred61

    bigred61 New Member

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    Thanks for pointing that out, information I am looking for. My barrel is a 1 in 9 twist.
     
  9. hardluk1

    hardluk1 Active Member

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    The barnes may be the best bullet for hunting but regardless stay with a heavier bullet and know when to let the game walk on by if you don't have the best shot. To many badly placed shots make for a bad day in the woods.
     
  10. Sniper03

    Sniper03 Supporting Member Supporter

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    Bigred,

    Your rifle in 1:9 will handle up to 69 grains with the most accurate being about 62 as a general rule. When you get up above 69 grain the barrel twist is not fast enough to stabilize the bullet to the optimum. And one other important consideration. They do make heavier bullets than the 69 grain but in some instances they will not fit or feed properly from the AR Magazine. I guess the most important decision is the selection of the bullets construction to get the best effect on the game you are hunting. Barnes does make some fine hunting ammunition as Shade suggested.

    03
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2013
  11. Control

    Control New Member

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    Don't even think about shooting a deer with a tiny .224" bullet. It's not only not legal in most places because it's cruel and the suffer and escape.

    Not only that but those AR's are ugly and out of place for a sportsman.
     
  12. Sniper03

    Sniper03 Supporting Member Supporter

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    Control

    Regarding your thought! I know deer have been shot with the 223/5.56 and several do use the caliber. But in all, I completely agree with you. I would not at all think of deer hunting with the calber. Because having the upmost respect for wildlife and game I believe in quick humane kills. I know the argument always comes up "Well it is all correct shot placement!" Being a hunter I know that it is not always possible and then there can be shooter error when firing the round which can cause a bad hit and with inhumane results. I have been hunting for years and will admit I have made less than the shot I intended and had to deal with the thought of less than a good clean kill. Which is always very disturbing to me. And in reality, a lot of hunters will not wait for the optimum shot they will just shoot if they see the game. So you are correct the caliber is far from the best choice for deer and similar size game. The only thing I would say is if they use the 223/5.56 make sure of pinpoint shot placement. And if you find you can not make clean kills and are feeding the coyotes STOP and get a better caliber.;)

    03
     
  13. DeltaF

    DeltaF New Member

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    Heck I've seen a guy drop a doe on the run with a .22LR. It made it all of 20 yards after the shot before keeling over. He was older than dirt and that's just what he always used. He'd turn you across his knee if you told him it was too little gun for a deer. 556 is just fine with the right shot placement. In fact if/when .556 fragments it can be overkill on a deer and can ruin a good chunk of meat. .223 Barnes TSX works great too.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2013
  14. bigred61

    bigred61 New Member

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    I appreciate your opinion, but as stated in my original post, I would really like to avoid going this direction in the conversation. My question was about bullet size, not ethics.

    Ashton
     
  15. mountainman13

    mountainman13 New Member

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    Pretty strong opinion against a popular caliber and rifle.
     
  16. Shade

    Shade New Member

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    Really? I have not had to track any deer I have shot with my AR-15,
    chambered in 5.56 NATO as they were with in 20 feet or less of where
    I hit them, due to shot placement and bullet selection.

    It would not be a recommendation I would make to a novice hunter
    however, I would stop someone from using it if they are inclined to
    and it is legal in the state they are hunting in.

    A few years back a friend and I shot deer on the same day hunting, mine
    with an AR in 5.56 and his with a .30-06 (BAR IIRC) mine fell where I shot
    it and his ran off over a hill into the next valley; I hit mine through both
    lungs and the heart. He hit the back of one lung, destroyed the other lung,
    missed the heart and broke the far side front shoulder.
     
  17. Shade

    Shade New Member

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    BTW, I just purchased a Remington Model Seven in .223 Rem for my 11
    year old to deer hunt with; one he can handle the gun and recoil well.
    Also I do not reload anything between the .223 and the .308 Win/.30-06
    cartridges, well caliber wise I do 7mm Rem Mag. but that is a bit big
    for an 11 year old.
     
  18. bigred61

    bigred61 New Member

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    My LGS has several boxes of Remmington Hypersonic in a 62 grain .223. Any one have any experience with these?

    Ashton
     
  19. kryptar19

    kryptar19 New Member

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    It may just be me, but I find Remington ammo to be lacking.
     
  20. bigred61

    bigred61 New Member

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    What do you see as the shortfalls? I also found some Winchester Super-X in a 65 grain, cant find any Barnes stuff in stock.