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Last Monday I shot my buck and while processing Tuesday I found my bullet lodged in the off shoulder. Shot background: The buck was quartering away and the bullet entered back (just in front of the left hip) and traveled through the paunch, liver, diaphram, one lung and a rib before lodging in the right front shoulder. The bullet never mushroomed like you would expect. I want to know what you guys think about this performance and the possible reasons for the lack of expansion. The gun is a .243 Thompson Center Encore pro hunter pistol. I'm seriously considering other types of ammo possibly with a soft tip.

 

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I'd be sending this photo to Federal and ask them since they say they are so good.You may want to use a soft point round.
 

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I like the fusions because they don't expand and they cause very little meat damage. I use them in .270 for does. Now, for bear and buck I use 150 gr Federal Premium Nosler Partitions.
They are what they are. If you want expansion, use someting else.
 

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you would think it would expand more. i was thinking lower then normal velocity from the encore pistol. let us know what they say.
 

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Probably didn't develop enough velocity. Not familiar with the gun or ammo but the ammo is probably designed for a rifle length barrel. What is the barrel length of the pistol? Ever chrony it? Velocity is the primary factor in expansion.
 

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I had the reverse shot with my 243 this year, 282 yards using the Nosler Combined Technology Ballistic Silvertip 95gr. Hit base of neck inside of right front shoulder (no bone), down through the lower chest cavity emusifying the lower half of the lungs, cup and core separated creating 2 holes in the diaphragm, both passed just under the liver, lead stopped in the spleen, the copper jacket in the stomach.

 

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Nothing to cause it to mushroom till it got to the shoulder....Soft stuff like what it went thru doesn't cause mushrooming....??????

Congrats to ya on the pistol harvest.....
 

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Part of the problem with the non-expansion could be that the velocity is down because you are shooting it from a pistol. Bullets are made to peform in a given velocity range. So if you are on the lower end of the velocity range the bullet might not expand reliably. I also would not make judgement because of one shot. That same bullet hitting a heavier part of the deer might have given perfect expansion. Sounds like the bullet did its job, it killed the deer. Did the deer go far? Did it need another shot? How far was it when you shot it.

Good luck, Tony
 

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Might be what you shot it out of ? not enough barrel to get all the velocity that round offers? Im sorry tony you beat me to it
 

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zumer said:
Nothing to cause it to mushroom till it got to the shoulder....Soft stuff like what it went thru doesn't cause mushrooming????
Not correct. Hydrostatic resistance to the bullet is what causes a bullet to mushroom, not bone. If hitting hard objects were the cause, then every bullet dug out of the wood of my target backstop would be a perfect mushroom and not just a smashed up, deformed slug. The ammo the OP used was simply a POOR CHOICE to use in his handgun. It could not develope the velocity needed to expand the bullet and he was actually pretty lucky to get the deer. The ammo was desigened for rifle-length barrels and while it can be safely used in the Encore, it simply didn't have the energy when it got to the deer to function like it was designed. The fact that it penetrated so far (on a bad hit imo) is the only reason the deer was killed. Unless you're handloading bullets like that of the Federal Fusion (heavy, bonded type) for large/thick skinned game for a handgun, where you can get the velocities back up where the need to be with the correct powders, a more frangible or easily expanding bullet would be the correct choice for something so thin skinned as a whitetail deer. Just because the gun can handle rifle rounds doesn't mean you should use rifle rounds in it.
 

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Stetam said:
IMO Federal Fusions are the best factory round out there......
I've said that numerous times.

If I'm not shooting handloads when deer hunting, you can bet that it will be Federal Fusions.

More accurate than any other factory load I tried, much more accurate than any deer hunting load needs to be (easily very-sub-MOA), and nothing but perfect terminal performance on every deer I've shot with them.

FWIW, I'm using the 140 gr load out of a 7mm-08 rifle.
 

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I shot my first deer this past week with Fusions out of a 25-06. Shot through the front of the brisket (facing left side) exited out right side behind shoulder with a hold bigger than my two fists. I was very impressed with them.
 

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I went to Federal Fusion loads a few years ago and have had nothing but perfect performance from them on both deer and bear. I also agree with the others who believe your performance was the result of lower velocities from a short bbl.
 

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Switch to the winchester ballistic silver tips. I've switched all of my ammo over to them and I'll never shoot anything else.
 

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Guys, I think some of you are missing the point here. Most rifle rounds, while certainly safe to shoot in the Encore line of pistols are simply NOT going to provide the velocities needed to provide good terminal performance through a combination of heavy bullets AND powder blends designed to work/burn better in rifle-length barrels. Your personal choice of ammo is IRRELEVANT to the subject brought up by the op. He is shooting at best, a 15 inch barrel. Not a 24 inch barrel that is common to many centerfire rifles found in the deer woods. He is losing AT LEAST 50 fps for every inch of barrel AND more with the unburnt podwer that makes that "cool 3 foot flame" at the end of the muzzle. His bullet performed poorly because he USED IT IN A PISTOL. The velocities posted on the end of the box of your factory ammo you buy at wal mart or gander or where ever is out of a longer barrel than most hunters even have on their deer rifles in the first place. I would guess that 90 grain fusion bullet left his Encore at around MAYBE 2450 fps...and when it got to the deer it was going even slower. My point is if you're gonna shoot a pistol for deer, use ammo for a pistol. Sure some factory ammo will work...like the cheaper, lighter built remington corelokded bullets or the more evpensive yet fragile bullets in the winchester supreme ballistic ct stuff but it is still not a definete when you shoot it out of a pistol.
 

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mightyjoeyoung said:
zumer said:
Nothing to cause it to mushroom till it got to the shoulder....Soft stuff like what it went thru doesn't cause mushrooming????
Not correct. Hydrostatic resistance to the bullet is what causes a bullet to mushroom, not bone. If hitting hard objects were the cause, then every bullet dug out of the wood of my target backstop would be a perfect mushroom and not just a smashed up, deformed slug. The ammo the OP used was simply a POOR CHOICE to use in his handgun. It could not develope the velocity needed to expand the bullet and he was actually pretty lucky to get the deer. The ammo was desigened for rifle-length barrels and while it can be safely used in the Encore, it simply didn't have the energy when it got to the deer to function like it was designed. The fact that it penetrated so far (on a bad hit imo) is the only reason the deer was killed. Unless you're handloading bullets like that of the Federal Fusion (heavy, bonded type) for large/thick skinned game for a handgun, where you can get the velocities back up where the need to be with the correct powders, a more frangible or easily expanding bullet would be the correct choice for something so thin skinned as a whitetail deer. Just because the gun can handle rifle erounds doesn't mean you should use rifle rounds in it.
Knowledge rite there
 
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