cart SHOPPING CART You have 0 items

Discussion Forums

Search forums
Forum Index > Rifles general discussion > Bullet Velocity Shock Value VS Animal Weight

Bullet Velocity Shock Value VS Animal Weight

21 Mar 2023
@ 11:14 am (GMT)

Ralph Junius

I have on this website that shock value, as in DRT (dead right there), basically ends at around 2600fps for all big game bullets up thru .338 diameter. I do get excellent DRT results with deer with my 270 in that regard. At the same time it is my understanding that bullets are not capable of shocking large animals regardless of velocity. My question is where is the cutoff point? As an example, does a 30 caliber bullet above 2600fps have any shock value on a moose or large elk? If not I see no sense in my recent experimenting with a 28 Nosler, that kicks hard but can maintain 2600fps much further than my light recoiling, fun to practice with, 308? Is there some kind of rule of thumb maybe for bullet weight at 2600fps versus animal weight that will still produce good shock and a chance for DRT with no tracking?


22 Mar 2023
@ 05:24 pm (GMT)

Mike Davis

Re: Bullet Velocity Shock Value VS Animal Weight
if you want DRT my humble experience,99% of your aim/battle/goal is going to be PPP proper projectile placement...... be it a small and fast in brain stem or big n heavy through locamotion bones (one of my favourite sayings is take out the front wheels and its going nowhere) its all a balancing act. and a .50BMG is no good through the guts.
in order to impart shock,the projectile still has to be close enough to something important that will be shocked enough to stop animal,sure I shot fallow hind 2" from her tail and it spun her around and paralized her back wheels long enough to put in finishing shot through brain...but thats an extreme case,and had she not been 50 yards away could well have escaped to die horrid slow death(she wasnt targeted animal,she was infront of stag in heavy fog and unseen) if you shoot your .308 better and have more confidence yo ucan place bullet where it matters...well youve answered your own question,but load it up as hot n heavy as you can,for sake of animal. or just get in closer,how close??? as close as you can then 5 yards closer still.
29 Mar 2023
@ 10:41 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: Bullet Velocity Shock Value VS Animal Weight
Hi Ralph, as I have said elsewhere, hydrostatic shock can be very helpful for anchoring game but while it is good to encourage this, it is not something we can rely on. As Mike suggested, shot placement is a key factor. Matching bullet construction to game weights is also important.

The above aside, as game weights are increased, bullet weight must also be increased - if we are wanting to obtain some form of nervous reaction. The answer to your question therefore is no, the 7mm and .30 cal do not generally produce this effect on Moose or large Elk. It can be done with a .375 and 250 to 270gr bullet, but speed also needs to be high which means high recoil. Much the same can simply be achieved via a mild .338, 35 or .375, keeping shots well forward so as to destroy the locomotive bones and muscles, the autonomic nerve ganglia at the front of the chest and arterial system.


We are a small, family run business, based out of Taranaki, New Zealand, who specialize in cartridge research and testing, and rifle accurizing.