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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am hoping someone can give me some guidance. I have a 12" T/C in 445 SuperMag. I handload using Nosler 250gn Partition HG bullets at a muzzle velocity of 1900fps. With this combination I hunt wild pigs with great success. Recently one of my favorite pig hunting locations is now requiring the use of lead free bullets forcing me to change my tried and true bullet combination. The heaviest lead free .44 caliber bullet I can find seems to be the Barnes 225gn XPB.

I am pretty sure the 225gn Barns will do well on any smaller to medium pig (up to around 150 lbs I am guessing) but I am not as confident if I were to come up against a large thick skinned boar say 200lbs + . Not having experience with the Barnes all copper bullets from a terminal ballistic point of view I am concerned the combination of a lighter bullet, higher velocity, and large hollow point construction of the Barnes bullet is going to translate into a large surface wound on a large pig with little destructive energy driving through the pig.

First, are there other lead free .44 cal bullets heavier than 225gns that I am missing? Or, can someone share there experience with all copper handgun bullets at a muzzle velocity of 1900 to 2100 fps and their effect on thick skinned game like a big boar pig. Your advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

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DRM: I do not have any experience with solids, or all copper bullets but I read once of a gal who took a large Grizzly with a 300 W mag using 180 gn Barnes solids, and it worked. I doubt this was any sort of a 'stunt' shot from the write-up about the hunt, so I would think that a solid copper bullet would hold together well for you.

Maybe some of the others who post here have some experiences they can relate. Mikey.
 

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They are a little disconcerting of a bullet to look at, as one would think they are fragile with the deep HP design ... but I shot a boar recently with my 375 JDJ/235 gr Barnes TSX/2300 fps load ... the bullet (which I am told is really designed for higher velocity) weighed 235.0 gr going in and 234.5 gr recovered against the gristle plate.

Personally, I think that Barnes you are talking about will do just fine or at least as good as the Nosler Partition HG - but then, I wouldn't trust it either til I had killed something with it and seen its performance myself.
 

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I would not worry, the Barnes bullet will work.
 

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The reputation of barnes is built upon weight retention...there are some that are monolithic solids that will not expand built for dangerous game that would not deform.. also there are Punch bullets that are non-deforming - if what you want is penetration through both gristle plates, heavy bone, end to end, etc.
there will be additional knowlegeable experienced responses, but I imagine that if dangerous game is hunted at hi velocity
dan k
 

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Have you considered hard cast bullets?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Redhawk1 said:
Have you considered hard cast bullets?
I am assuming you mean hard cast "LEAD" bullets. If so my premise for starting this thread was that I can only use lead free non-toxic bullets in my favorite pig hunting spot. If you mean hard cast made from another alloy point me in the right direction.

Thanks everyone for your input....
 

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I read that, but I forgot when I posted my last post. Sorry. Stick with the Barnes, I had good results with them myself.
 

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I have used the Barnes X bullet several times out of a rifle with great success on a few critters. The funny thing about those Barnes X bullets is that they all look the same after you recover them. Perfect mushroom and peeled like a banana where the cuts are on the nose. I would not worry about using them in a 445 SM, they will do a fine job on a large hog.
 

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Barnes have worked in rifles for a long time so I don't know why they wouldn't work in handguns?
 

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At the price of copper today ($3.48 on the Spot Market) it might be cheaper to buy gold bullets.

The price of copper has shot up dramatically over the past year, and is it thought that it may go even higher due to world demand. Bottom line, this will equate to higher prices for ammo, it may eventually have a bearing on the price of brass too. We may find ourselves buying more of the steel cased, non-re-loadable stuff in the future.
 

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So what you are saying is we will all be shooting 7.62 caliber in the near future? ;D ;D

Copper is still affordable... and it don't look like it's going down in price, but x-bullets ain't cheap in the first place. Nosler partitions aren't any cheaper than them. This is why you should look for a cheaper, similar bullet to do your practicing with, and keep with the good stuff for hunting. Of course, make sure you get enough practice with your hunting rounds.

And I'm sure somebody is going to enter the market to give them some competition, besides nosler and their e-tip which is only in .308, and I've already read a couple of bad review about.... we will see. It's how the world works... everything is just going to keep getting more expensive until we get hit with a comet. That's about all that would stop it. ;D ;D
 

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PS - Did you hear that oil broke the $90 a barrel mark for the first time in history?
 
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