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  #1  
Old 03-19-2013, 9:38 PM
iand1821 iand1821 is offline
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Default Recommendations for full copper bullet - hog hunting with .223/5.56 ar

Hey calgunners, first post here.

I'm planning on going hunting for the first time in a couple months. Hopefully will find some pigs!

I'm told by the guy running the hunt we need lead free bullets.

Anyone have a recommendation for a good lead free pig killer?

I'll be loading myself, using varget in my ar15 with 20" barrel w/ 1/9 twist.
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  #2  
Old 03-19-2013, 9:42 PM
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70gr Barnes TSX.
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  #3  
Old 03-19-2013, 10:31 PM
frt96 frt96 is offline
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IBTDSHWA.223
In before the don't shoot hogs with a .223 crowd.
Barnes TSX!
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  #4  
Old 03-19-2013, 10:41 PM
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It's fine to shoot hogs with .223, BUT be careful with shot placement AND have someone backing you up with a heavy caliber. You will never penetrate the front haunches with anything in .223. Frontal skull head shot will be chancy too. Side shot in ear, or frontal in eye will work. Several shots in ribcage behind haunches could work, but it will be a fairly slow bleed-out rather than a clean kill with .223 in any bullet weight or bullet construction.

Was witness to a situation where a feral hog on a working ranch was opened up on with .223 by several shooters at about 75 yards. 55gr and several 69 grains in massive quantities did not take him down. It took a .308 to finish the task. No one wanted to get close enuff to do tight shot placement with a .223 after the initial barrage failed to do anything but make him pretty pissed off. After action showed 15+ .223 hits in neck, torso and several that bounced off skull. One .308 FMJ in frontal quarters dropped him quickly with broken bones and massive damage.

That said, use at least a 70gr and make sure it's FMJ or solid type for penetration, also, load it HOT and place that shot!

Last edited by GeoffLinder; 03-20-2013 at 2:04 AM..
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Old 03-19-2013, 11:17 PM
stevec223 stevec223 is offline
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why dont you do the pig the honor of taking it with a real big game caliber ?????...
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Old 03-19-2013, 11:31 PM
Wrangler John Wrangler John is offline
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When I managed a wild pig eradication program on a local park, the hunters we tried first used their AR-15's and .223 Remington with great success. However they couldn't take enough pigs by hunting, so I contracted with a trapper. The trapper shot the pigs in the trap with a laser sighted .22 LR rifle (he had a permit from DF&W).

So, the .223 Remington is adequate for wild pig, maybe a bit light for the old bores with thick armor hide on their shoulders, but most of the hunters were after the younger smaller more tender tasty pigs. Great eating after commercial smoking.

Barnes loads their Vor-Tx factory ammo in .223 Remington with their 55 Grain TSX bullet if you don't want to load. As G60 posted the Barnes TSX 70 grain bullet will do nicely in your 1:9" twist barrel. Barnes 62 grain TSX will also work in a 1:9" twist, and the 55 grain TSX works in 1:12" twist and faster.

Barnes 55 grain Tipped or TTSX bullet will also work in a 1:9' barrel, but the 62 grain TTSX is listed for a 1:8". All these bullets prefer a jump to the lands, which shouldn't be a problem as the magazine length limits seating depth anyway.

Other bullets to consider are the Hornady 55 grain GMX and 70 grain GMX, these are similar to the Barnes TTSX but the ogive is shaped differently and may shoot better (or worse) depending on your barrel's preference. Good luck.

Last edited by Wrangler John; 03-19-2013 at 11:35 PM..
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  #7  
Old 03-20-2013, 1:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wrangler John View Post
When I managed a wild pig eradication program on a local park, the hunters we tried first used their AR-15's and .223 Remington with great success. However they couldn't take enough pigs by hunting, so I contracted with a trapper. The trapper shot the pigs in the trap with a laser sighted .22 LR rifle (he had a permit from DF&W).

So, the .223 Remington is adequate for wild pig, maybe a bit light for the old bores with thick armor hide on their shoulders, but most of the hunters were after the younger smaller more tender tasty pigs. Great eating after commercial smoking.

Barnes loads their Vor-Tx factory ammo in .223 Remington with their 55 Grain TSX bullet if you don't want to load. As G60 posted the Barnes TSX 70 grain bullet will do nicely in your 1:9" twist barrel. Barnes 62 grain TSX will also work in a 1:9" twist, and the 55 grain TSX works in 1:12" twist and faster.

Barnes 55 grain Tipped or TTSX bullet will also work in a 1:9' barrel, but the 62 grain TTSX is listed for a 1:8". All these bullets prefer a jump to the lands, which shouldn't be a problem as the magazine length limits seating depth anyway.

Other bullets to consider are the Hornady 55 grain GMX and 70 grain GMX, these are similar to the Barnes TTSX but the ogive is shaped differently and may shoot better (or worse) depending on your barrel's preference. Good luck.
I would agree that younger and smaller will be the key here to success with .223. The one I saw dealt with was a huge old boar and definitely over 250lb. It was a tough and ornery SOB and I would not want to ever see an animal dealt with like that again. It was unfair to the boar that he had to go through that ordeal even if he was damaging ranch land and needed to be removed :-(
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Old 03-20-2013, 1:50 AM
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Barnes 70 gr TTSX

I've loaded it 2908 fps using H335. Careful, +max load. It has performed very nicely (sub-MOA) and will put down mostly anything you shoot. Hogs will do fine.
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Old 03-20-2013, 5:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevec223 View Post
why dont you do the pig the honor of taking it with a real big game caliber ?????...

Your first time hunting OP? I would rather take too much gun. What kind of sidearm will you pack?
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  #10  
Old 03-20-2013, 5:50 AM
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Borrow someones bigger cal gun if you need to. It's amazing how tough pigs can be. If you get into them in tight cover and are under gunned I wish you luck.
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Old 03-20-2013, 9:55 AM
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I think the 223 is a great round. I also think the AR platform is a fun rifle to shoot. But in my opinion it is not a good hunting rifle. That is not to say you can't hunt with the rifle, it's just why would you want to? I know that what I think may not be right for everyone else but I have rifles I specificly shoot paper with, ones I shoot steel with, ones I shoot clay with, and then there are the rifles I hunt with!

I was always told and believe in the saying, "the right tool for the job".

Like I said before you can make the AR 15 in 223 work. But you are going on a hunt where you are planning on taking a smaller younger boar in hopes to make a well placed shot to drop you dinner, then there is something that you may want to consider. Those on this board may be able to explain this better then me but in my experience hunting has tought me many of things one primaraly is that things don't always go to plan! You may not see that small young tasty hog, or it may not give you that perfect broadside shot and if its quartering towards you then you want some better penetration then any 223 would offer hogs are tough.

Like I said I think it is doable to take a hog with a 223 but its not ideal. When I hunt for boar here in California it is mostly in between the pinnacles and king city at a friends ranch I use my old faithful 30/30 (has always got the job done) or my 270 win. Also don't get me wrong more is not always better, you do want to make sure there is meat to eat.

No matter what you decide good luck with your hunt and have a great time.
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffLinder View Post
It's fine to shoot hogs with .223, BUT be careful with shot placement AND have someone backing you up with a heavy caliber. You will never penetrate the front haunches with anything in .223. Frontal skull head shot will be chancy too. Side shot in ear, or frontal in eye will work. Several shots in ribcage behind haunches could work, but it will be a fairly slow bleed-out rather than a clean kill with .223 in any bullet weight or bullet construction.
I would add smaller pigs. better chances with a smaller pig.

Quote:
Was witness to a situation where a feral hog on a working ranch was opened up on with .223 by several shooters at about 75 yards. 55gr and several 69 grains in massive quantities did not take him down. It took a .308 to finish the task. No one wanted to get close enuff to do tight shot placement with a .223 after the initial barrage failed to do anything but make him pretty pissed off.
No offense to the people you were witnessing, but that seems like a pretty wussy thing to do. No one had the balls to rush in and finish the job, when farmers do it all the time with a 22LR? My pig was at <20 yards, and I'm no hero. Were these young guys or something?
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:57 AM
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With modern bullet designs, like the aforementioned 70gr TSX, .223 is fine.

For the naysayers: http://m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=94628

The 1-9" twist barrel might have trouble stabilizing it though.
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Last edited by G60; 03-20-2013 at 11:01 AM..
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Old 03-20-2013, 2:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiterabbit View Post
I would add smaller pigs. better chances with a smaller pig.



No offense to the people you were witnessing, but that seems like a pretty wussy thing to do. No one had the balls to rush in and finish the job, when farmers do it all the time with a 22LR? My pig was at <20 yards, and I'm no hero. Were these young guys or something?
It was a shooting match on a working ranch and owner had told everyone that pigs were to be shot on sight, no questions asked. The boar was in a clearing down a steep hill and would probably have run off if anyone had tried approach. My big regret was that no one had a heavy caliber out and ready to start with. I did not participate, just witnessed and winced :-(

My feeling is that anything you hunt requires YOU to provide a clean and efficient and honorable end (in other words, respect the life you take by not inflicting undue suffering AND eat what you harvest).

I once made a poor shot on a buck in NoCal way back when, it was offhand at 75-80 yards and buck was walking broadside. Outfitter I was with insisted that I move in quick and finish it with a knife rather than a close heavy caliber shot that would damage a lot of meat. I learned a bloody lesson that day, make it clean or don't take the shot. Outfitter said I needed to learn that the hard way and to NEVER do that again, he was right!

Last edited by GeoffLinder; 03-20-2013 at 2:15 PM..
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Old 03-20-2013, 2:20 PM
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I didn't even mention ethics of killing. I meant the wussy behavior of not willing to move in to finish the job. Even with what sounds like a semi automatic rifle, with several (at least one) wussy friend to back them up.

That was the sad part to me.
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Old 03-20-2013, 4:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiterabbit View Post
I didn't even mention ethics of killing. I meant the wussy behavior of not willing to move in to finish the job. Even with what sounds like a semi automatic rifle, with several (at least one) wussy friend to back them up.

That was the sad part to me.
It was faster (and safer) for someone to go get a .308 from the truck back at the road than to go down a vertical ravine filled with solid brush. I was the one who insisted the bigger gun be gotten and that it be done reet quick. There were six of us with AR's there, it was an action shooting match and we were on our way to a remote part of the ranch for a natural terrain shooting stage.

No one was a wuss, maybe too enthusiastic to do what had been specified (shoot ferals on sight), but wuss has nothing to do with anything here and I resent that implication!

Last edited by GeoffLinder; 03-20-2013 at 4:44 PM..
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:29 PM
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For me it keeps coming back to the right tool for the job. I hope you are not choosing the AR platform just so you can add a notch to your stock. If that is the case then there is always varmints!

But still no matter what you choose I wish you the best.
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffLinder View Post
No one was a wuss, maybe too enthusiastic to do what had been specified (shoot ferals on sight), but wuss has nothing to do with anything here and I resent that implication!
I agree that "wuss" has nothing to do with being eager or taking a misplaced, uncertain or rushed shot. That is just poor judgement or inexperience. But glad you learned from the situation. I think it's safe to say all of us have been guilty of one of these if not all.
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Old 03-21-2013, 12:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pacilander View Post
I agree that "wuss" has nothing to do with being eager or taking a misplaced, uncertain or rushed shot. That is just poor judgement or inexperience. But glad you learned from the situation. I think it's safe to say all of us have been guilty of one of these if not all.
Thank you! Hard experience is the arbiter of future knowledge. When you are in a situation you react as well as you can at that moment, when you are in that situation again, you react better from what you have learned!
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Old 03-21-2013, 1:14 AM
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They can be hard to kill....I have actually slowed down the copper bullets on pigs. I had lots of trouble with .300 win mag going through and not stopping pigs and deer. Now i shoot 42 grains of 2520 and a 165 grain barnes in a .308 ackley improverd and they drop hard. Same with the 7/08 we slowed it down and now they drop in a heap. My daughter likes ar platform so she shoots 6.5 with ttsx but she has had to hit them multi times with that rig. Some is placement some is simple horsepower
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Old 03-21-2013, 1:16 PM
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used a trick from another forum..

I couldn't find load data for IMR and 70gr TSX (aka, military, as TAC-X), so i called them - it was listed under 5.56, helpful guys.

I would not under gunned.
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Old 03-21-2013, 1:24 PM
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Any of the tsx bullets would be fine... we have even used the 45 grain tsx with great success
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Old 03-21-2013, 1:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffLinder View Post
No one wanted to get close enuff
You can resent it on behalf of your acquaintances all you like. It boils down to exactly this.

Pacilander is right, they were "wusses" not for poor judgement, hasty shots, or inexperience. They were wusses because in light of the poor judgement made by inexperience or haste, noone was willing to get close enough to fix the situation.

Last edited by Whiterabbit; 03-21-2013 at 1:48 PM..
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