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Forum Index > Rifles general discussion > Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking

Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking

03 Jun 2018
@ 06:22 am (GMT)

Luke Lahdenranta

I am about to set up and load for my Tikka 243, I am looking for a bullet that could serve as a benchmark for the performance of the 243 Win cartridge on deer at ordinary hunting ranges, let's say 300 yards or so.

Reading over the Knowledgebase here as well as other threads on the 243 the bullet that seems to get recommended over and over again is Sierra's little .243 85 gr HPBT game king. This little bullet is supposed to kill deer very quickly but as 7mm/.30 guy used to heavier bullet weights what I am wondering about for those of you that have used this bullet, is what type of realistic expectations should I have regarding this little bullets performance, especially penetration? I have been experimenting with moving my shot placement forward (as per the effective game killing article) and I am wondering if this little bullet can cope with that on deer or is this a strictly behind the shoulder into the rear lungs bullet?

If this isn't the bullet for that forward shot placement, would I be better served with the Hornady/Sierra 100 gr bullets?

Many thanks in advance.

Replies

03 Jun 2018
@ 08:00 am (GMT)

Chris Murphy

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Hi Luke I haven’t used the Sierra but I set up my dads 243 with the 95 nosler BT we have had great results with it. 150lb boar was the last thing he shot and dropped it on the spot he also took a red stag at 310yard first shot would have kill it it was unstable on its feet but gave it another for luck.
I wouldn’t push it past 300 with large game as it just doesn’t have the speed to overcome lack of weight
03 Jun 2018
@ 10:00 am (GMT)

Andrew Murray

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
I have a friend that uses OSA factory ammo. It may not be available outside of Austraila but it ha's the 87gr V-Max projectiles. He shoots very nice groups with it.
03 Jun 2018
@ 10:57 am (GMT)

Bob Mavin

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Hi Luke

I use 100 gn BTSP Hornady interlock in my 243, I've had good results on Fallow Deer out to 400yds.
Cheers
Bob
03 Jun 2018
@ 01:19 pm (GMT)

Bob Mavin

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Before using the 100gner's I used 87gn Hornady BTHP, very accurate, great penetration but did a lot of meat damage if not careful with the shot placement. I shot a Fallow at 200yds front on, the projectile exited the back ham, full length penetration. But had to throw out the front shoulder & one back leg.
03 Jun 2018
@ 03:06 pm (GMT)

Bob Mavin

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Whoops, the 87gn pill that caused the damage was when I was using them in my 6mm Remington about 100fps quicker than my 243 Winchester. They do the job well in my 243.
03 Jun 2018
@ 04:30 pm (GMT)

Luke Lahdenranta

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
That's some interesting results from that Hornady 87 gr hpbt pill, I will keep my eyes out if I ever see it for sale. Around here for Hornady I have only seen the 100 gr btsp or 95 sst for sale, or the new 103/108 ELD.
05 Jun 2018
@ 06:53 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Hi Luke, provided the deer are not too large, the HPBT GK will be fine with shoulder shot placement. I would suggest that you give it a try for a season, just to see for yourself and when doing so, do not avoid bone.

The jacket on this projectile is a shade tougher than the Hornady 87gr pills. In relative terms, wounds are wider than the 100gr Interlock but penetration is slightly deeper than the 87gr Hornady bullets. It is quite a good balance, provided we do not push game weights or ranges to the extremes.
05 Jun 2018
@ 09:26 am (GMT)

Luke Lahdenranta

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Thanks for that information. I look forward to loading and trying out the 243. It will make an interesting contrast to my 30-06.

Oh by the way, your advice on trying out Superformance powder with the heavy 200-208 gr bullets in the 30-06 was absolutely spot on. That combo is running out of my old Tikka at about 2730 fps and running sub MOA really wakes up the old 30-06. I have just swapped my scope out from a fixed 6x to a 4.5-14x44mm and will do my final fine tuning but it looks like it will be a dynamite hunting combo out to any range I want to take it. The only problem I can see with the 30-06 running heavies at 2700 fps is it makes it much harder for me to justify buying myself a medium bore other than just for fun! :)
11 Sep 2018
@ 06:12 pm (GMT)

Luke Lahdenranta

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Just a quick follow up on this thread.

I've loaded the 85 gr hpbt with H4350/AR2209 but since I had trouble finding actual hard load data for this powder/bullet combo i loaded only up from 42.0 to 45.0 gr 0.5 gr increments in Winchester 243 brass and with Fed 210M primers.

42.5-43.5 all ran at about 3075 fps and 0.75 MOA accuracy at the same POINT so I'm thinking that was the low accuracy node.

From 44.0, 44.5, 45.0 gr velocity increased to about 3200 fps and groups opened up to about 1.5 MOA and POI Began to wander just a little bit higher and slightly about an inch right. Looking at the targets, accuracy and the brass/primers which looked perfect, I'm thinking that the 45.0 gr load might be just below the higher velocity accuracy load? I think it could be worth loading up to maybe 45.5, 46.0, 46.5 and maybe up to 47.0 gr looking for pressure signs? I think at 3200 fps maybe H4350 should have a bit more velocity to give in the 243 with the Sierra 85 hpbt, I'm thinking 3300 fps maybe doable with this load?

The second part to my question is whether it is even worth chasing that velocity (assuming good accuracy) with this bullet? It is after all a light weight cup and core bullet, perhaps running it up to say 3300 fps would only compromise closer range penetration? I'm pretty happy with the accuracy at well better than MOA and 3075 fps will shoot flat enough to get me out to 300 yards.

I'm just looking for a good load to try out this fall in my Tikka 243, for ordinary deer out to ordinary ranges, perhaps deer to 200 lb and most likely from 50-250 yards out.
12 Sep 2018
@ 07:36 am (GMT)

Andrew Murray

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
The question seems to be one of diminishing returns.

I was recently gifted a tin of AR2208 powder for my 308. I have worked a decent load with AR2206H (accuracy wise - I have chronographed it yet) well and truly sub-moa off the pack in field conditions.

But the 2208 loads will require more powder for what looks to be only a limited gain, and who knows accuracy wise?? All will need to be tested of course.

But if you run hot loads then you need to take into account the cost of that, not only in powder but barrel life and case life too, plus then there are twist rates and what not, maybe the projectile itself is not happy to go faster even if your rifle and cases are.

Very easy for me to throw variables and questions around on a forum but you are the guy who has to pull the trigger and know what is going to happen when you do :)
12 Sep 2018
@ 08:26 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Hi Luke, you are on the right track. Your loads are in line with some rifles I have tested. Others need less powder than this. As always, the rifle is an individual.

Try for an upper node. If it shows then use it, if not, make peace with 3075fps.

I do like to get to or above 3200fps if possible, simply because the BC on this bullet is a bit low and the slower impact velocities do have an effect on speed of killing (see KB comments). Still, the GK works well for ordinary hunting at MV's of around 3000fps, have a taken a number of animals with such loads at varying ranges.

Carry on as you are doing. Let the rifle decide.
12 Sep 2018
@ 08:30 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
...As Andrew says, watch out for diminishing returns.
12 Sep 2018
@ 01:54 pm (GMT)

Luke Lahdenranta

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Thanks for that reminder, it can start to equal diminished returns, I know been there and done that.

I think I will try and hunt this lower velocity load this fall since hunting season is upon us here in BC! No time now to go around chasing an extra hundred or two fps. But I will keep that 2600 fps cut off in mind in the field and perhaps keep my aim forwards.

I think I will and try and find that higher velocity node this next winter or spring, I just have a hunch from what I've seen so far that 45.5 or 46 0 gr will come in nice and accurate with around 3250 fps or better... I hope. But we shall see.

Thanks again.
12 Sep 2018
@ 10:19 pm (GMT)

Warwick Marflitt

Re: Sierra 85 gr HPBT Gameking
Luke Pauls had some good results with the 108 ELD-M
at around 3230fps + - 4fps and tight bolt lift 😲 @ 3425fps

https://www.ballisticstudies.com/Resources/Discussion+Forums/x_forum/17/thread/17932.html
 

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