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Centerfire Rifles - Manually Operated Lever action, bolt action or other non gas operated centerfire rifles.

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  #1  
Old 02-17-2014, 10:27 AM
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Default switching from lead to copper

Anyone know if there are accuracy problems from a rifle that has been shooting copper jacketed lead bullets then later switches to solid copper bullets. Does something change in the rifling? I have a low round count on my Tikka T3 I also have a bunch of Amax bullets I want to use up but am concerned this may affect the accuracy at a later date when the lead ban is finalized.
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:55 AM
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Jacketed lead bullets are jacketed in gilding metal.

Copper bullets (barnes) are solid copper, which is similar to gilding metal. It's like a copper bullet with a copper jacket.

Gliding metal bullets (GMX) are solid gilding metal, the same stuff on the outside of your jacketed lead bullets.

It stands to reason that you won't have any issues, though some have found that they get more copper fouling with the barnes bullets, or at least they used to.
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Old 02-17-2014, 2:05 PM
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Originally Posted by NapalmCheese View Post
Jacketed lead bullets are jacketed in gilding metal..
Jacketed bullets are formed from copper punched and extruded from copper sheet. Plated bullets have a wash of whatever gilding metal they want to use - usually copper and only a couple thousandths thick.
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Old 02-17-2014, 6:51 PM
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When you make the switch if your accuracy is way off try jumping the solid bullets 0.050- 0.070 more than your copper/lead bullets.
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Old 02-17-2014, 8:04 PM
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Originally Posted by M1NM View Post
Jacketed bullets are formed from copper punched and extruded from copper sheet. Plated bullets have a wash of whatever gilding metal they want to use - usually copper and only a couple thousandths thick.
It would seem Sierra (at least) uses gilding metal.
https://www.sierrabullets.com/produc...kets/index.cfm
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Old 02-17-2014, 8:30 PM
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The only potential issue is that solid copper / gilding metal bullets may be longer for the same bullet weight, simply because copper is less dense than lead. A longer bullet may require tighter rifling. So it is possible that your rifle may not be accurate with lead-free bullets if you choose the wrong ones.

Properly sized copper solid bullets will not damage your rifling in any way. About the worst thing that could happen is faster copper fouling, but even that can be cleaned out, nor is it unique to copper solid bullets. Shoot with confidence.
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Old 02-17-2014, 9:11 PM
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Just clean the rifle real good using a copper solvent(read NOT Hoppies #9) before switching back and forth.
The jackets on Swift bullets are copper. Nosler/sierra/speer/hornady/win/fed/rem etc are not a pure copper. They are guilding metal. Hornady GMX and Nosler E-Tip(solid expanding) are guilding metal also
Barnes are copper only.
When using the Barnes type(also GMX and E-Tip) select a bullet weight less than the lead core bullets you are using and drive them as fast as you can(safely) for best performance.
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Old 02-17-2014, 9:56 PM
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I am using Hornady GMX with excellent accuracy results in my 18" barreled Remington 788.
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Old 02-18-2014, 1:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hunt View Post
Anyone know if there are accuracy problems from a rifle that has been shooting copper jacketed lead bullets then later switches to solid copper bullets. Does something change in the rifling? .
no.
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Old 02-18-2014, 3:18 PM
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Originally Posted by ar15barrels View Post
I am using Hornady GMX with excellent accuracy results in my 18" barreled Remington 788.
I would like to know of this load recipe. Barnes lied and sold us down the river, I try not to buy any of their products. I do have some 80GMX and have found a few so-so loads in 6mm. Please share your experiences. Barnes screwed us.! I have also tried their bullets in .22 cal. OK, but nothing near the accuracy of lead, and this is in a 1/8 twist. They helped to pass the lead ban. Please tell your friends. In my 243 I have achieved about 1 1/2" accuracy with the 80 GMX. The 18" barrel really makes me wonder. Can you post pics of the target you shot? And what twist is the barrel?
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Old 02-18-2014, 3:25 PM
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Why fix what aint broke?
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Old 02-18-2014, 3:41 PM
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thanks for the replies, I think the reports I hear about loss of accuracy is coming from a rifling twist issue as the copper bullets will be longer for the same weight. I do have the tighter rifling in 7-08 for heavier bullets thanks to Tikka's foresight.
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Old 02-18-2014, 5:37 PM
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Originally Posted by GSF44Mag View Post
I would like to know of this load recipe. Barnes lied and sold us down the river, I try not to buy any of their products. I do have some 80GMX and have found a few so-so loads in 6mm. Please share your experiences. Barnes screwed us.! I have also tried their bullets in .22 cal. OK, but nothing near the accuracy of lead, and this is in a 1/8 twist. They helped to pass the lead ban. Please tell your friends. In my 243 I have achieved about 1 1/2" accuracy with the 80 GMX. The 18" barrel really makes me wonder. Can you post pics of the target you shot? And what twist is the barrel?
I'm shooting the 165gmx over varget in a 308.
I don't recall the load.
It's written on the label on the ammo box though.
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Old 02-19-2014, 8:58 AM
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Originally Posted by M1NM View Post
Jacketed bullets are formed from copper punched and extruded from copper sheet. Plated bullets have a wash of whatever gilding metal they want to use - usually copper and only a couple thousandths thick.
I've never seen a plated rifle bullet...nor 100% copper bullet jackets. I'm curious as to who makes them.
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Old 02-19-2014, 9:13 AM
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Why fix what aint broke?
Im thinking maybe he hunts hence the name "hunt". And in 2019 we got to phase out all lead bullets. But thats my assumption.
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Old 02-19-2014, 9:24 AM
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Originally Posted by dskit View Post
I've never seen a plated rifle bullet...nor 100% copper bullet jackets. I'm curious as to who makes them.
http://www.xtremebullets.com/category-s/2897.htm

plated .308, .311, and 30 carbine.
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Old 02-19-2014, 9:52 AM
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http://www.xtremebullets.com/category-s/2897.htm

plated .308, .311, and 30 carbine.
Also 270 bullets for the 6.8 SPC.
We had a BIG problem with 6.8SPC when it was new specifically because the plated bullets are not strong enough to hold together between the case neck and the throat.
They would expand and then shear off a section in the chamber, causing an explosion with the next round.

Here is the little ring that would get sheared off and the results of the round that was fired AFTER the ring was stuck in the chamber neck:



The solution was the extend the throat longer so that the bullet would slide into the throat before it obturates.
This faulty (CHEAP!) rifle bullet manufacturing method is THE primary reason there are two different chamber specs fo 6.8SPC now.
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Old 02-19-2014, 10:20 AM
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I never liked short throat rifles anyways. Just have to eliminate the false notion that bullets have to be jammed into the lands or else poor performance is inevitable.
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Old 02-19-2014, 11:31 AM
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Originally Posted by mif_slim View Post
Im thinking maybe he hunts hence the name "hunt". And in 2019 we got to phase out all lead bullets. But thats my assumption.
Exactly 2019 by then he will learn California is not a hunting state and do all of his hunting elsewhere.
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Old 02-20-2014, 4:00 AM
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Randall
The bullets were slugging up do to a short throat?
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Old 02-20-2014, 8:58 AM
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Randall
The bullets were slugging up do to a short throat?
The bullets were obturating while they were still in the neck and transistioning into the bore.
A traditional drawn jacket is strong enough that you can push the bullet from behind (via the 40k psi+ gas) and the front of the bullet will get obturated in the throat/lead while the rear of the bullet holds it's diameter until it fully enters the throat where it is fully supported.
The cast bullet with copper plating is NOT strong enough to do this at typical 40k PSI pressure and the result was the shearing off of material during each firing.
By extending the throat about 0.107", they were able to get more of the bullet supported in the throat before obturation began and the cast/plated bullets would go down the barrel without leaving any of their parts behind.
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Old 02-20-2014, 9:03 AM
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That's too bad. A lot of people are going to misinterpret that as a problem with the bullet, and not a problem with the chamber.
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Old 02-20-2014, 9:08 AM
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That's too bad. A lot of people are going to misinterpret that as a problem with the bullet, and not a problem with the chamber.
It was a problem with the bullet.
Long cast and plated bullets just are not usable much above 30,000 PSI.
That's why you only see commercially available ones in lighter weights/shorter lengths.
SSA has discontinued the use of the plated bullets in their 6.8 loadings and all of these problems have disappeared.
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Old 02-20-2014, 9:16 AM
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that would of course completely ignore 200+ grain 30 cals used in 300blk, the 168 grain 7mm bullet, every 45/70 bullet over 450 grains, several 8mm bullets used in the 8x57, 62 grain 22 cal bullets being experimented with for AR-15 use, and the heavy 357 cal bullets available from penn and others used in 35 whelens and other rifles.
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Old 02-20-2014, 9:23 AM
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that would of course completely ignore 200+ grain 30 cals used in 300blk, the 168 grain 7mm bullet, every 45/70 bullet over 450 grains, several 8mm bullets used in the 8x57, 62 grain 22 cal bullets being experimented with for AR-15 use, and the heavy 357 cal bullets available from penn and others used in 35 whelens and other rifles.
If they run long cast/plated bullets at high pressures in short throats, problems will arise.
Most of your examples above would not fall into those parameters as they either have longer throats or run at lower pressures.
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Old 02-20-2014, 9:40 AM
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If they run long cast/plated bullets at high pressures in short throats, problems will arise.
Most of your examples above would not fall into those parameters as they either have longer throats or run at lower pressures.
Thus: a gun problem, not a bullet problem.
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Old 02-20-2014, 9:45 AM
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Thus: a gun problem, not a bullet problem.
So then SAAMI standard throats dveloped with traditional jacketed bullets must be the problem.
I guess we need to extend the throat of every chamber to accept plated cast lead bullets loaded to jacketed bullet pressures.
You should bring this up at the 2015 SAAMI conference while you are there.
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Old 02-20-2014, 10:21 AM
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gun design changed to compensate for the problems surrounding new bullet construction (jacketed). Just like they (the bullets) were not considered suitable for hunting, and bullet design again changed to compensate for that (IE HP, expansion, core bonding, etc)
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Old 02-20-2014, 7:46 PM
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WhiteRabbit
What Randall is saying is you can't push lead bullets at high velocities.
Lead inside of a jacket works because most are alloys and if it melts that isn't a problem as it is sitting in a cup.
Acceleration will melt a column of pure lead.
Gas checks help but you still can't exceed the fps limit.
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Old 02-21-2014, 2:30 AM
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Originally Posted by GSF44Mag View Post
I would like to know of this load recipe. Barnes lied and sold us down the river, I try not to buy any of their products. I do have some 80GMX and have found a few so-so loads in 6mm. Please share your experiences. Barnes screwed us.! I have also tried their bullets in .22 cal. OK, but nothing near the accuracy of lead, and this is in a 1/8 twist. They helped to pass the lead ban. Please tell your friends. In my 243 I have achieved about 1 1/2" accuracy with the 80 GMX. The 18" barrel really makes me wonder. Can you post pics of the target you shot? And what twist is the barrel?
Oh I don't know, the Barnes Varmint Grenades are among the most accurate bullets on the market. Yeah, I know they aren't made for big game, but the Barnes TTSX and TSX bullets are. The quick and dirty load I made up with the .257" 80 grain TTSX for use in my .257 Ackley Improved worked out good enough for varmints when seated .050" off the lands. Any deer sized game hit with that bullet leaving the muzzle at 3,585 fps would soon find itself in the freezer or smoked and vacuum wrapped.

Barnes 26 grain Varmint Grenade, Hornady's little 24 grain NTX lead free and Nosler's 32 grain BT lead Free .204" bullets shoot fairly decent, all in the .204 Ruger, with twist rates from 1:12" to 1:8.5", in bolt actions and my M-4 custom contraption.

With the powdered copper core varmint bullets and monolithic copper expanding bullets you don't have to worry about jacket and core separation or melted cores causing bullet failure, just drive them as fast as you want.

The 6mm bullets are good too, I use the 62 grain Varmint Grenade in the .243 WSSM with great results. I have a new Brux 6mm barrel in 1:8" twist coming for the 6mm PPC just to shoot the Barnes 62 grain Varmint Grenade and the Nosler 55 grain BT Lead Free. Of course all these barrels will work with the monolithic copper expanding bullets also.

All groups below are 10 shots @ 100 yards.

M-4 Colt groups during load work up:



Bolt actions love them too.







The absolute worst groups I shot with the Colt M-4 right out of the box with Varmint Grenades was these pathetic examples:



I am not the slightest bit concerned about the politics of lead vs lead free, because the lead free bullets out perform the lead core stuff in every instance. They work just fine for varmint hunting where I fire hundreds of rounds per season vs the average big game hunter that fires much less. Plus those copper big game bullets make many smaller bore cartridges deadly on game once beyond their capability.
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Old 02-21-2014, 5:40 PM
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My limited experience is that copper bullets shoot o.k., but in 4 of the 5 rilfes I have, lead loads shoot better. The 5th I have not tried lead in yet.
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Old 02-21-2014, 6:14 PM
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Here's how the lead free 120 grain TSX bullets shoot in my 6.5x284. I shoot them and the 142 grain TSX (cup and core bullet) without cleaning the barrel between times with no issues. The SMKs are loaded .007" off the lands and the TSX bullets are shot with .050" jump to the lands.

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Old 02-22-2014, 5:21 AM
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Hunt - my father is a reloader/hunter and he hasn't mentioned any issues since he started reloading copper.

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Old 02-22-2014, 5:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Divernhunter View Post
Just clean the rifle real good using a copper solvent(read NOT Hoppies #9) before switching back and forth.
.
What's a good copper solvent cleaner? Never needed one but switching to plated bullets on my next order. Thx
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Old 02-22-2014, 9:33 AM
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What's a good copper solvent cleaner? Never needed one but switching to plated bullets on my next order. Thx

I use this stuff:


Available at:

http://www.boretech.com/products/copperremover.shtml

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/127...t-16-oz-liquid

http://www.amazon.com/Bore-Tech-Copp.../dp/B0070IQJA0

http://www.sinclairintl.com/reload/b...cts/index.aspx

I use these patches exclusively: http://www.brownells.com/gun-cleanin...prod27487.aspx

Also use a Proof Positive type nylon bore brush, jag and rod with a non-brass tip so the brass doesn't leach blue copper fouling stain on the patches, or I'll know when the bore is copper free.

Proof Positive stuff is found here: http://www.boretech.com/category/rifle.shtml

I also use BoreTech's Eliminator solvent to start, then follow with CU+2 Copper Remover and C4 Carbon Remover. The barrel will appear clean after the CU+2 but then patches run with the C4 Carbon Remover come out with varying degrees of black or brown carbon fouling quickly turning clear of all color. Now the bore is clean and ready for a coat of bore lube before firing. I use Holland's Witch's Brew Bore Lube or my own alchemical concoction to esoteric to mention.

I have used Shooter's Choice, Butches Bore Shine, BoreTech's Bench Rest Blend, Barnes CR-10, Pro-Shot Copper Solvent IV, Blue Wonder, Wipe Out Foam, Sweet's 7.62, Silver Streak Outboard Motor cleaner, Rem Clean, JB Bore Cleaning Compound and Bore Bright, Holland's Witch's Brew Copper Remover, and the old classic Hoppies #9 and Outers, along with other stuff lost to history. Nothing works as well as BoreTech's products, which contain no ammonia.

Keep in mind I use only double lapped custom barrels, and that face-of-the-moon factory barrels will take a bit more cleaning. I have some factory barrels that seem to be designed to store stratified fouling as a permanent geological record.

However there are many gods in the pantheon of gun cleaning, so others will swear that their favorite brand works best. I will just and say that I'll keep that in mind before walking walk away. Arguing religion is a waste of time.
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Old 05-04-2014, 8:03 PM
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Exactly 2019 by then he will learn California is not a hunting state and do all of his hunting elsewhere.
I for one, am not going anywhere else to hunt. There is game here in Ca. I haven't shot yet.
Yes, Ca. is still a hunting state. Not the best, but still. Out of state fees are more than I can afford. Lots of us hunt here in Ca.,and will not be driven out.
A large portion of the hunting community will still be using lead. I have thousands of rounds that can still be used for targets.

PS: Witches brew removes everything but the steel. Just wrap a patch around a brush. I have a bore-scope so I can see what real clean looks like.
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Last edited by thomashoward; 05-05-2014 at 6:41 AM..
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Old 05-05-2014, 2:29 AM
Wrangler John Wrangler John is offline
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I for one, am not going anywhere else to hunt. There is game here I haven't shot yet.
Yes, its still a hunting state. Not the best but still. Out of state fees are more than I can afford. Lots of us hunt here,and will not be driven out.
A large portion of the hunting community will still be using lead. I have thousands of rounds that can still be used for targets.

PS: Witches brew removes everything but the steel. Just wrap a patch around a brush. I have a bore-scope so I can see what real clean looks like.
I agree Darrell Holland's products are excellent. I use Witches Brew Copper Remover on factory barrels that become fouled. His Witches Brew Bore Lube/Break-in Fluid is great for applications where I don't use Boron Nitride or am too lazy to do the coating. On my Pac-Nor polygonal rifled barrels there is no need for an abrasive copper remover. The one I am working with currently is cleaning up with solvent patches and a nylon brush with so little effort I enjoy cleaning barrels again. Of course this applies to most custom high end barrels, Shilen, Brux, Kreiger, Hart and Schneider among others.

Varmint hunting on private property in Oregon doesn't require a hunting license, but many of the ranches have contracted their big game hunting rights to private guide services that require licenses, tags and some charge up to $10k for a hunt. The last ranch we hunted sage rats on had pronghorns wandering around, picturesque if nothing else.
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Old 05-05-2014, 4:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thomashoward View Post
I for one, am not going anywhere else to hunt. There is game here I haven't shot yet.
Yes, its still a hunting state. Not the best but still. Out of state fees are more than I can afford. Lots of us hunt here,and will not be driven out.
A large portion of the hunting community will still be using lead. I have thousands of rounds that can still be used for targets.
Out of state hunts can be very affordable and they are almost always productive. Trust me I don't make much money and when I spend I spend it wisely. When you say you wont be driven out that is exactly what you are doing in the way of letting this state run your life and telling you what and how to do things They have done the same type of crap with off shore fishing and you know all about regs with shooting or target practice on BLM / Public land that you pay taxes on. Support it or leave it, it's your choice. Sad but true.

Last edited by toby; 05-05-2014 at 4:35 AM..
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Old 05-05-2014, 6:37 AM
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How long do you hunt when you go out of state? I hunt every weekend of deer season in CA, plus a few long weekends when I take extra days off. My "season" would most surely be limited if I were to only hunt out of state.
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Old 05-05-2014, 8:36 AM
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I hunt until I get my animal usually three to ten days I spent fourteen days a few times but I get animals and my hunt is over. One trip instead of many. That's time and $$$$$$ saved plus better size animals. Not saying I get an animal every year that would be BS, but I pass on many if the shot is not good or the animal is just not what I'm looking for. I'm not a meat hunter and in no way a trophy hunter I hunt for the passion of hunting and the exhilaration of finding and tracking a good animal, the taking is just a bonus for me. If you ever hunt another good state you will say to yourself why did I not do this sooner. When and if I hunt Cali it's not in Condor range at all I hunt Low and High Desert Mule Deer, hard to find but well worth the effort, come 2019 my little bit of Cali hunting is over in full.

Last edited by toby; 05-05-2014 at 3:18 PM..
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