Cast hunting bullets.

  • Last Post 15 December 2022
2frogs posted this 15 December 2022

Ok. I got my first big doe with my Rossi 92 in 357,with the 158 swc,at a bhn of 10. At about 70 yards. It's snowing here in north east pa. Anyway,my question is,why are some folks saying that you need a hardness of at least 15 bhn. Seems to me it would be like driving a hardwood dowel through with no mushrooming. Therefore just crippling the animal. Any good explanation for this.. thanks..

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Ken Campbell Iowa posted this 15 December 2022

... note that many of our national champ winners are using " soft " 20-1 or 30-1 alloy at 1500 fps ... ( gc ) ........   and these alloys mushroom nicely ...

one easy test is to whack your bullet with a hammer ... it should flatten nicely, not crumble or shatter ... for hunting ...


interesting that you can use soft mushrooming alloy at even higher fps with no gas check if you paper patch them ... seems strange, and there is something very interesting there but i can't figure it out ...


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Aaron posted this 15 December 2022

Experienced folks say that you should match your velocity and hardness. A HP bullet needs to be softer to expand. A SWC needs to be harder to drill deep. Gas checked bullets can be softer than their PB counterparts, all things being equal.

Bottom line is that the alloy and therefore the BHN is matched to the velocity and desired terminal effect of the bullet. Yours worked just fine so - 10 works with your velocity, range, and desired effect.


Here are my 357 HP bullets in 20:1 alloy which is about 10 BHN. These were fired at 1200fps. Work great.


Here is a 44 Mag bullet in Lyman #2 alloy (BHN 15) fired at 1300fps. Total failure of the bullet. Hard didn't work here.


Here is the same bullet in 20:1 alloy at 1200fps


SSK 340gr 44 Mag bullet. COWW metal. Heat Treated. BHN about 22. These are made to drill through 400 pound wild Russian boar lengthwise. Then a tree. Then another tree. Then a hill. Then finally stop in a third tree.

As you can clearly see, velocity and alloy need to work together to make a bullet perform on target (terminal ballistics). You make the BHN what it needs to be to work in your gun for your purpose. laughing


With rifle in hand, I confidently go forth into the darkness.

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