308 win on plains-game?

noslerpartition

Handloader
May 26, 2018
1,006
375
A friend wants to use his 308 on plains-game out to 300 y this year. Currently he uses the 150 gr LOS HT, which you probably don't know. Similar to lehigh, brass with the front designed to fracture. The bc isn't that good, so we are thinking about alternatives. The 165 gr AccuBond comes to our mind, another friend is happy with the BT from a 300 wsm.
What would you take?
Thanks
Frank

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Frank thank you for the question. I’m curious as well. I’d be looking at AB and PT options in that class, maybe I’m giving plains game too much credit. I limit BT to light and medium skinned game. But I might be including too many animals in the category of plains game. I would think the 308 has enough “go” to use on the plains game.
(The one that’s bothering me is the zebra. I hear they are tough animals...but maybe that’s not plains?)


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I guess it includes all non-dangerous game, but there doesn't seem to be a fixed definition.
A friend got a zebra with the 165 BT, but from a 300 wsm. Impressive exit-wound. I guess the 308 win does the same, just on shorter distances.
Would opt for the AB, though...

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I would use a 308 Win with a 165 gr PT or a 180 gr PT and not look back. Shot placement is paramount.

JD338
 
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Any of the above comments will suffice, I would use an AccuBond or Partition, from 165 to 180 grains and keep it within 300 yards due to its slower speeds. If its a thin skinned, then a Ballistic Tip will do just fine, but who knows if you may come across a tougher animal in the field, so the other two choices is the best bet.
 
JD338 nailed the answer. The 165 grain PT is more than enough if the rifleman does his/her part. There are no flies on the AB, and it will work equally well.
 
I agree that the 180 gr NP or AB are going to be better choices than the BT, if larger tougher animals such as the zebra, gemsbok and wildebeest are on the bucket list. They are extremely tenacious animals. Eland are even bigger, and tougher antelope.
And either is going to work just as well on the other plains game, as they do on our deer, caribou, moose, elk and bear.
As always, bullet placement is key.
Just remember, that the vitals on african species are lower and further forward than those of our north american species. Recommend he get that little book showing all of the various african animals and their vitals for shot placement. The Perfect Shot: Mini Edition by Kevin Robertson. I got one for my wife when planning for our trip that we were supposed to go on last year.
 
They were there twice before, but his 8x68 is waiting for a new barrel.
The BT performed well so far. With the strong jacket, it is a well-designed bullet - though I would go for the AB

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Haven't hunted Africa yet. From the results I've seen with my 30-06 & 165 gr Ballistic Tip bullets on elk, mule deer, black bear and pronghorn antelope - I'd be very confident with a 165 gr bullet from a 308 Win.

Partition, AccuBond, or ya, even the Ballistic Tip. It's a tough bullet. They're all good. (y)

Enjoy the hunt!

Guy
 
The LOS HT looks similar to Hammer bullets and other newer design copper bullets.

I suspect that the 150 would be fine, but they also make a 165HT.
I'd go with monometal bullets in a second, but that's me.
If you're allegedly only shooting to 300 yards you will never notice the difference in ballistics between the 150 and the 165.
 
Perhaps of interest:

Some years ago I sold my 300 Win Mag, Rem 700 to a buddy. Had a 2.5-8x Leupold on it. I also supplied him with a lot of 300 Win mag ammo.

He took 180 gr Nosler Partitions to Africa for plains game, and also 180 gr Nosler Ballistic Tips.

I was surprised on his return when he told me that the PH was delighted with the quick kills from the Ballistic Tip bullets, and asked him to use that ammo instead of the Partitions!

Guy
 
I've killed maybe a bit more than a half dozen good sized Mule Deer with a .308 using the 165 gr. Speer Hot core. Of those deer, I've only recovered one bullet and that one traveled almost the full length of the deer. The most any deer traveled was maybe 30 feet. With that said, considering the cost of an African hunt, I'd use either the Nosler Partition or AccuBond and never look back. Probably go with the 165 gr. weight as well. I've only taken one elk with the 165 gr. AccuBond but that was from a 30-06. Hit was at the short ribs and ended up in the left lung. The elk went maybe 30 feet and collapsed. A finishing was required. IIRC, muzzle velocity was abound 2880 FPS from the 06. The bullet was never found and did not exit. It was probably imbedded in the mess of the left lung.

From what I've read, most shots in Africa run about 200 yards or less so maybe a 180 gr. bullet would be more than sufficient, probably to at least 250 yards. I'd just use the one that shoots best in the rifle.
Paul B.
 
Frank

April ask me to respond to you

Plains game are NOT all created equal and depending what he intends to hunt, the 308 would be a long way from my first choice. But the 308 will be adequate for approx 3/4's of the animals listed under "plains game" however


Zebra was mentioned. The 308 will work on the Cape Zebra but if hunting the Burchells you should use at least a 338, I would use a 375 H & H or comparable.

Sable and Roan antelopes, at least a 338 and again I would opt for a 375 H & H or comparable. And tell them they might be facing the Sable head on as they will and do charge

Giraffe, the 375 H & H with solids

Same with the Cape Eland, 375 H & H or comparable and the first shot with a soft and second with a solid. The Livingston is a bit smaller and not as tough but I would use at least a 338

One thing you dont want to do if you can help it is spend all your time tracking a wounded animal. In Africa there is not such thing as too much gun--for your safety, for your pocketbook, for your time.

Bst Regards

Jamila
 
Yes Jamilla, always good to get your input and recommendations on what to use for these species!
Your experience is valued as always and your shared knowledge is greatly appreciated!
Hope all is well for you and your family!
 
Africa Huntress":565w1j1i said:
Frank

April ask me to respond to you

Plains game are NOT all created equal and depending what he intends to hunt, the 308 would be a long way from my first choice. But the 308 will be adequate for approx 3/4's of the animals listed under "plains game" however


Zebra was mentioned. The 308 will work on the Cape Zebra but if hunting the Burchells you should use at least a 338, I would use a 375 H & H or comparable.

Sable and Roan antelopes, at least a 338 and again I would opt for a 375 H & H or comparable. And tell them they might be facing the Sable head on as they will and do charge

Giraffe, the 375 H & H with solids

Same with the Cape Eland, 375 H & H or comparable and the first shot with a soft and second with a solid. The Livingston is a bit smaller and not as tough but I would use at least a 338

One thing you dont want to do if you can help it is spend all your time tracking a wounded animal. In Africa there is not such thing as too much gun--for your safety, for your pocketbook, for your time.

Bst Regards

Jamila
Thanks Jamila!
They have the 8x68 with them, too.
But my friend's one is waiting for a new barrel, so he takes the 308 for the smaller ones.
They will hunt in Namibia, mainly for a reduction-hunt - weather was bad and the farm is low on biomass (=feed).
Btw: one of them was very happy with the 300 wsm last time including zebra.
I will let you know how it worked out.

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Frank, the 300WSM, which is comparable to the 300 H & H, which is what I used, is a tad more potent than the 308, especially in the heavier bullets, which I had a tendency to prefer for the large "plains game"

But it sounds like this is more like they are helping to thin out the herds, so if the 308 doesn't put it down and someone else who is there does so with a heavier caliber with a follow up shot it would be no big deal, like it would if you were paying to hunt that animal and would not want someone else putting it down for you.
 
April, you my be the only one left who still uses the 300 Holland and Holland. Everybody now wants a short action and a light weight rifle and the 300WSM gives them that, plus uses less powder, with better ballistics.

But, on the other hand, the 300 Holland and Holland is a classic and I am told they feed and eject very smoothly
 
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