View Poll Results: Which do you prefer?

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  • 1 hole (entrance only)

    1 5.56%
  • 2 holes (entry and exit)

    17 94.44%
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Thread: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

  1. #1
    Senior Member knitepoet's Avatar
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    1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    I know there are a lot of devotees to both trains of thought.
    One group wants only 1 hole, their preference usually seems to be based on the arguments, "All the bullet's energy is delivered to the target." Followed by, "Any energy a bullet has when it exits the animal is "wasted" "

    The other group, which I belong to, wants 2 holes. My reasoning is, NORMALLY, with the bullets I choose to hunt with, the exit wound is larger, providing a secondary hole for the internal bleeding to escape and make a blood trail. Making recovery easier if the animal makes it out of sight. I will say, I do have a problem with the "wasted energy" argument. Even an arrow with a broad head can quickly kill a deer and even my 175# crossbow's "energy" pales in comparison to most handgun rounds.

    I'm not saying either is better than the other. I just know what I, personally, prefer and am curious about the rest of you.
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    Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.

  2. #2
    Senior Member JerryBobCo's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    You need a third category.

    Depends on shot placement and angle of entry.

    For instance, If I shoot one quartering away from me at a 45 degree angle or less, I want the bullet to enter toward the back of the rib cage, or perhaps even further back, and lodge in the far side shoulder. If it's a broadside shot, I want two holes, both in the rib cage in the heart/lung area.
    Jerry

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  3. #3
    Senior Member knitepoet's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Didn't think about that.

    I, apparently mistakenly, figured most folks were fairly fixed in their preference.

    I've only ever recovered 2 bullets from deer. A 335gr Rainier plated HP from under the hide in the base of the neck of a doe on a quartering away shot with my 50 Beowulf from 41 yards away. The second was a 64gr Nosler bonded on a small buck quartering towards me. Shot from the front and bullet broke 2 of the last 3 ribs and was under the skin above the last rib.

    I would have preferred they had both exited. The 'wulf kill was a DRT, the 223 kill made it ~50 yards into the woods, and tracking was difficult.


    edited to add: Well there was a third, but it was recovered from the second Axis deer it killed.
    Quote Originally Posted by Seven habits of highly effective pirates
    Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.

  4. #4
    Senior Member 41magnut's Avatar
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    I've used calibers from 357M to 30/06 for WT.

    The only ones that didn't pass through were the pistol bullets (357M & 41M) & 30/30.

    Pistol shots were both below 50 yards, and 30/30 was at 130 yards. That was one example with 30/30, several others were pass through shots.

    An exit wound would in theory, provide a better blood trail.
    I've seen it go both ways, pass through shot = interstate sized trail or dribbled signs dropped widely seperated.

    Wouldn't it depend how much bone (more shoulder v. a rib) projectile penetrated, as opposed to soft tissue?

    If the animal is taken cleanly, I have no preference between the two.



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  5. #5
    Senior Member bisley's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    I thought that I preferred a pass-through, but when I developed a load for my push feed Model 70 in .30-06, I was having trouble cracking into MOA territory, so I tried a lot of bullets that were available locally. I ended up with a 165 grain Nosler Ballistic Tip over a book max load of RL-22, to get five shot groups under MOA (I have since lowered my standards to three shot groups). I assumed that any fairly hot 165 grain .30-06 would easily pass through a whitetail, from a broadside shot. I've shot three large whitetails with them, and none of them passed through. However, they did turn the heart and half the lungs into jelly, and all made about a 2"x3" entrance wound. One was DRT, another went 10 yards, and the smallest of the three made it about 40 yards.

    So, I guess I don't really care. The 7mm-08 I hunt with now gets loaded with 139 grain Hornady SST hand loads, which I have read (here, I think) that they should pass through. I have yet to shoot a deer with it, so I don't know for sure, but my grandson has shot a medium size whitetail with one, in a different rifle, that did pass through both lungs and exit. Anyway, I hunt from a blind and take ~100 yard shots, so I usually wait for a broadside and don't have to do any tracking. I either get a slam-dunk shot, or I don't fire.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Zee's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    I don’t care about the front side or the back. I care about what happens in the middle. So, I strive to choose a bullet/cartridge combination that will cause the most damage when placed in the right spot.

    The number of holes is inconsequential.
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith

  7. #7
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    A quick clean kill is my goal. Hole number isn't a consideration.

  8. #8
    Moderator Wambli Ska's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jermanator View Post
    A quick clean kill is my goal. Hole number isn't a consideration.
    Agreed, but I do prefer two holes leaking blood and place a high value on low chest shots at angles where I will most likely get this.
    "Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching." General George S. Patton

  9. #9
    Senior Member knitepoet's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wambli Ska View Post
    Agreed, but I do prefer two holes leaking blood and place a high value on low chest shots at angles where I will most likely get this.
    Quote Originally Posted by Seven habits of highly effective pirates
    Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.

  10. #10
    Senior Member NN's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jermanator View Post
    A quick clean kill is my goal. Hole number isn't a consideration.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member early's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Holy deer
    My thoughts are generally clear. My typing, not so much.

  12. #12
    Moderator Linefinder's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Quote Originally Posted by JerryBobCo View Post
    You need a third category.

    Depends on shot placement and angle of entry.

    For instance, If I shoot one quartering away from me at a 45 degree angle or less, I want the bullet to enter toward the back of the rib cage, or perhaps even further back, and lodge in the far side shoulder. If it's a broadside shot, I want two holes, both in the rib cage in the heart/lung area.
    I've gotta link arms with my buddy Jerry on this one. I usually try to make broadside thru the chest shots using NBTs, so the number of holes is pretty much moot. The chest cavity is gonna be mush.

    But, I once shot a whitetail that wouldn't agree to a perfect broadside, so I fired at its right shoulder, but apparently pulled the shot an inch or two. The bullet missed the front shoulder entirely, penetrated the ribcage, kept going, and landed most of the left ham across a good chunk of landscape. Since the deer wasn't that big, this was like a 20% loss of meat. I wish I hadn't had two holes that day.

    So...sometimes it just kinda depends.

    Mike
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  13. #13
    Senior Member cpj's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Perfect world, there would be a small entry that looked like it was made with a hard cast bullet, exploded innards, and the bullet wouldn't exit so I could keep it. And of course the deer would either drop on the spot, or preferably run in the direction of the truck or at least in to the road.
    Reality, I don't much care. I get the two holes bleed more argument, and agree. Of course I agree more with making a good shot so a blood trail isn't needed.
    And yes two holes is energy wasted, technically speaking. Not that it makes eff all difference.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member terminator012's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Never really thought about it as long as it was a clean fast kill. Most have been 2 holes though.
    Last edited by terminator012; 01-28-2018 at 05:37 AM.
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  15. #15
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    I voted for 2 holes, but you wont always get 2, in my experience it depends on the size of the animal, angle of shot, placement, and bullet construction. What I want is a one shot quick kill.

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT

  16. #16
    Senior Member Big Al1's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Quote Originally Posted by JerryBobCo View Post
    You need a third category.

    Depends on shot placement and angle of entry.

    For instance, If I shoot one quartering away from me at a 45 degree angle or less, I want the bullet to enter toward the back of the rib cage, or perhaps even further back, and lodge in the far side shoulder. If it's a broadside shot, I want two holes, both in the rib cage in the heart/lung area.
    That's what I was going to say!

  17. #17
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    A few points in my 2-hole philosophy.

    1. If I do my job right and shoot straight, the bullet is delivered on a line to punch a hole through something important, and it won't matter if the bullet is of the diameter of a finger or a telephone pole - the animal is going to die in fairly short order. If the bullet is launched on a good line, but doesn't make it deep enough to hit something important, that's bullet failure, and critter death begins to depend on any number of less solid variables.

    2. Wound channel LENGTH (as well as width) factors into volume of damaged tissue that will create bleed out. A shallow temporary cavity may have the same or less volume as a long permanent one, and it may not stand as good a chance of intersecting critical structures. Another way to think of it - how long do you think you could stay standing if your heart was pumping your blood out full-stream from a 3/4" garden hose?

    3. On the topic of energy being "wasted" by a pass-through, bullet mold maker Veral Smith wrote of his observations on the matter. A bullet that has either a large frontal meplat or expands to form one, that has the momentum to completely pass through the animal will be violently crushing, tearing, and displacing tissue all the way through. One that slows to a halt inside the animal will at some point stop this violent displacement and merely push tissues out of the way. Imagine the driver of a car (representing the bullet) slamming on the brakes to avoid a collision with a herd of armadillos (representing the tissue of a deer's chest cavity. . .work with me here). The armadillos at the start of the herd are going to be very messed up, while the ones at the end of the car's stopping distance may just get a light tap and be back on their way. The bullet that penetrates through is more like a car where the driver didn't even think to touch the brakes, and ALL the armadillos have a bad day. Thus, the energy isn't wasted; rather, the bullet damaged all that it possibly could within the path it was set on.

    In short, a bullet that performs like an archery broadhead is not a bad thing.
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  18. #18
    Senior Member snake284's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    To me, ideal would be that the bullet would go all the way through the deer and barely have enough energy to come out the other side and fall to the ground. I voted two, too, To, tu, 2 because of that. But ideally lives in utopia which is like perpetual motion, and hasn't been perfected yet. And since I'm at least half ass color blind, I don't really worry about a blood trail.

    Bullets that perform like or similar to Sierra Game Kings are about ideal in my view. They are just tough enough to get inside the deer's or hog's body cavity and they open up real nice wrecking the insides. This year the deer I killed the bullet went in just below the spine and came apart just enough to wreck the spine and put him down immediately. This was by design and one of my favorite shots. I only take it if the animal is within reasonable distance and a good clear shot where I have a good rest and can make a real good shot, hitting the animal at my precise point of aim.

    Other wise I go for a heart-lung shot. However, for me a heart-lung shot requires the same bullet performance. It's well documented and I've experienced that a deer can run a good ways with the heart and/or lung shot and to put him down fast the bullet needs to do as much damage as possible. You need to make mush of the heart and/or lungs to limit his run after the shot.
    Last edited by snake284; 01-28-2018 at 10:38 AM.
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  19. #19
    Moderator Wambli Ska's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Quote Originally Posted by cpj View Post
    Perfect world, there would be a small entry that looked like it was made with a hard cast bullet, exploded innards, and the bullet wouldn't exit so I could keep it. And of course the deer would either drop on the spot, or preferably run in the direction of the truck or at least in to the road.
    Reality, I don't much care. I get the two holes bleed more argument, and agree. Of course I agree more with making a good shot so a blood trail isn't needed.
    And yes two holes is energy wasted, technically speaking. Not that it makes eff all difference.
    Oh I didn’t mean because of blood trails. I’ve had to track very few deer in my life, and most of them were not mine, and the blood trail does come in handy at that point. But my preference for two holes is that (and I have no science to back this up, only perception) is that an upper heart shot deer (I aim for the area where the arteries enter the top of the heart) with two holes leaking blood looses consciousness and piles up right quick...
    "Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching." General George S. Patton

  20. #20
    Senior Member Diver43's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Of the choices I pick 2
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  21. #21
    Senior Member snake284's Avatar
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    Re: 1 hole or 2, in your deer sized game?

    Quote Originally Posted by Diver43 View Post
    Of the choices I pick 2
    Depending on shot placement, I've seen more than two holes. Sometimes with a more frangible bullet, when it comes apart the schrapnel from the pieces of bullet can make several holes.
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