“Products You Can Count On - Every Time”

February 2008 Barnes Bullet-n

Randy Brooks Message:  

Barnes is fortunate to enjoy a mutually supportive relationship with a number of fine companies. The list includes Weatherby, Federal, Cor-Bon, Black Hills, Norma, Sako, Sellier & Bellot, and custom loaders like Safari Arms, Superior Ammunition and Sam Sanjabi (Trophy Ammo).

One result of these relationships is I’ll be a guest on the Weatherby Nation—a live web chat hosted by Weatherby February 16th, beginning at 4:00 p.m. Eastern time (2:00 p.m. Mountain Standard Time). I’ll be answering questions online from web chat visitors. The topic will be “Barnes Bullets performance in Weatherby products,” but the discussion could go in almost any direction. I’ll be happy to discuss any question about hunting, shooting, bullet performance or other related topics. The live chat event should last about two hours.

Aaron Smith, Weatherby’s marketing coordinator, will open the session. Then the web chat will be turned over to anyone who has a question. There’s no cost or obligation, but you must register in advance to participate. Visit and follow the prompts to sign up.

Weatherby’s new online community is an industry first. It’s a great place to learn more about Weatherby rifles and shotguns, exchange tips and ideas, and interact with other hunters and shooters. It’s a great place to visit with industry experts, as well as fellow shooters. The site also allows you to show off photographs of your trophies in “My Trophy Room,” while “The Gun Rack” lets you catalog and record all your firearms—which is great for insurance purposes.

Being able to interact with shooters on the Weatherby Nation is just one benefit we enjoy because of our relationship with other companies. During the first days of February, Barnes will be attending the annual Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Sports (SHOT) show in Las Vegas, where we’ll meet with many of our industry partners. We’ll also renew acquaintances with distributors, retailers and customers who drop by the Barnes booth. It’s also fun to see new products other manufacturers introduce at the show.

Then we’ll be back at work manufacturing bullets and developing more innovative new designs. However we will still find time to hunt a few coyotes and rabbits to keep our shooting skills sharp and start developing loads for the upcoming varmint season.

Here’s wishing you good hunting in the months ahead.

Randy Brooks

The new year is in full swing, and we’re in heat of the battle attending all the trade shows held in January and February.

We’ve just completed the SCI Show in Reno. As always, it was a fabulous and fun show. We will be on our way to the SHOT Show in Las Vegas as this newsletter reaches you. This is a huge show for sporting goods retailers, distributors and manufacturers, and it gets bigger every year. The National Rifle Association Show will be held in Louisville, Kentucky May 16-18th and we hope that we will see some of you there.

Sales are going very well with the new Tipped TSX bullets. The new Varmint Grenades are the hot item now as people gear up for varmint hunting season. The new .204 26-grain Varmint Grenades will begin shipping in mid-February. If you want some quickly, you will be able to order them online from our store site, or find them shortly at your dealer.

Overwhelming requests from customers indicate they love our Varmint Grenade ad campaign featuring a helmeted prairie dog dug into his foxhole. If you want something fun to wear as varmint season approaches, we now have a new Varmint Grenade T-Shirt featuring the pugnacious prairie dog. You can order one by visiting our online store and clicking on accessories.

The Barnes reloading manual Number 4 is a bit behind schedule, but we should begin shipping it the first of April. You can order your manual now, if you like, and be among the first to receive a copy of this educational, highly informative new manual. I guarantee there is no other reloading manual out there like it. You can pre-order a manual by visiting our online store and clicking on accessories.

Barnes chooses to be innovators, not simply imitators—so it’s only natural our manual would be far different from others now on the market.

Barnes will be breaking ground for its new manufacturing facility in Mona, Utah later this month. We will be building new 25-yard, 100-yard and 300-yard underground shooting ranges at the site. The new facility will be 40 miles south of our current location. We are very excited about the move. Leaders of the rural community we are moving to are looking forward to having us there. In the back yard of the new home Randy and I are building there, we have mule deer roaming the hills and mountains, along with elk and bighorn sheep. The area is absolutely amazing. If you’re traveling through the central part of Utah, we hope you’ll look us up and stop by for a visit.

We anticipate having a terrific year with all our products. We are especially proud of all of the new introductions for 2008. Please don’t hesitate to call if you have questions about any of our products. Of course, we always want to receive pictures and stories about your hunts. Don’t hesitate to send them to

Many of the customers who sent us pictures in the past now have their good-looking faces and trophies displayed in our new manual, website or catalog. Our customers make our business, and we love to show them off.

Thanks for being a Club X member. If you haven’t already requested our “Bullet Myths Busted” DVD, be sure to order your free copy now. It’s great entertainment for the whole family.

Happy Hunting

Coni Brooks

Ty’s Tips

Question: I tried your TSX bullets in two different calibers while hunting deer this year. First, I used a Remington 700 rebarreled to 6.5×55 to fire a 130-grain TSX bullet at about 90 yards. Then, I used a 7-30 Waters Contender with 120-grain TSX to take two does—one at 130 yards, the other at 180 yards. All three were chest shots, and produced the same results–very small entrance wounds with exit wounds measuring roughly an inch and a half across. My question is, why the little entrance wounds? I think I might be missing something here. Shouldn’t there be a bigger difference in performance between a rifle bullet at over 2900 feet per second (fps) and a pistol bullet at 2450 fps? Not to mention the pistol shot was at a range of 180 yards.

Please understand, I did have three one-shot kills and none of the animals went very far. They were all hit with lung shots. I hear about the devastating wound channels these bullets produce, but have yet to see this. Am I making the wrong bullet selection for each caliber? I have to say the accuracy of the TSX bullets are nearly as good as my target bullets in my target rifle—and my hunting guns aren’t target guns, so I sure don’t have any concerns there. I should tell you that the entrance holes in the hide are about the size of the end of my finger. Is it that I just don’t have the speed needed? I really don’t want to shoot directly at the shoulder shot if I don’t have to. I’ll appreciate any suggestions you can give me for bullet selection and speed.

One other question—my son wants to hunt with a Contender next year. Do you think going the other route of speed and a light bullet would be a good choice? I see in your manual you recommend the .223 for deer, with a 53-grain bullet traveling about 3000 fps. Do you think this would be a good recommendation? If you think this is normal X Bullet performance, that’s fine. I just want to be sure I have it right.

Thanks again


Answer: Your results are very typical for Barnes’ all-copper bullets. Because they remain intact, they typically produce a bullet-diameter entrance wound and quarter- to half-dollar-size exit wounds. This doesn’t mean they’re not creating a large wound channel within the animal. In fact, the hydrostatic wound channel produced inside the animal typically measures a full eight inches in diameter. The accompanying photos should answer many of your questions. For more details, click here.

Rapid Expansion

Barnes 150-grain Triple-Shock X-Bullet fired from a Federal .308 Winchester factory load. Bullet is shown exiting a two-inch-thick slice of 10 percent 250A Ordnance gelatin. As this photo shows, very little resistance is needed to force the razor-sharp copper petals open.

Massive Tissue Destruction

Barnes 150-grain Triple-Shock X-Bullet from a Federal .308 Winchester factory load. After traveling the full length of the gelatin block, then exiting, the bullet remains stable. Note the helical pattern being formed in the still growing temporary cavity. The cavity will continue to grow for at least another milli-second. Resistance is equivalent to 16 inches of muscle tissue.

Deeper Penetration

Path of Barnes 150-grain Triple-Shock X-Bullet from a Federal .308 Winchester factory load as it passes through 16 inches of ballistic gelatin. The bullet made more than five complete rotations during transit. Transferred energy split the block on three sides. The more rotations the bullet makes, the greater the odds of lacerating one or more vital organs.

How Quickly Does Your Bullet Expand?

Snapshot: .050 inch aluminum plate shows bullet expansion after penetrating one inch thickness of ballistic gelatin.

.308″ Bullet
Hole Diameter
Barnes 180 gr. MRX
Barnes 168 gr. TSX
Nosler 180 gr. AccuBond
Nosler 165 gr. Partition
Swift 165 gr. Scirocco
Sierra 168 gr. MatchKing
Hornady 165 gr. InterBond

* Instead of expanding, bullet yawed on impact.

  • Impact velocity was approximately 2000 fps, simulating a 500-plus-yard bullet strike from a .300 magnum rifle.
  • Lead-core bullets require substantial frontal resistance to expand. Barnes’ all-copper bullets rapidly expand once a small amount of fluid enters the specially engineered nose cavity.

  • To answer your last question—yes, many deer are taken each year with our .224-caliber 53-grain TSX bullets. The higher velocities do create a larger hydrostatic shock, which makes these bullet very effective. However, there’s no need to push them very fast. As you have seen, they are very effective at slow speeds, as well.

    Thanks, Ty

    Question:I am wondering if you plan on making this bullet for a 7.62x54R cartridge. I have a Mosin Nagant Model 91/59. I just read an article in Rifle magazine, and am impressed. I do a lot of hunting for whitetail deer, and I am looking for a good bullet for my 7.62x54R. I think your bullet would really do the trick. There are a lot of hunters—or I should say Mosin Nagant owners—looking for good ammo for hunting and shooting. Please help. I really want to hunt with your bullet. Love the knock-down results!


    Answer: We’ve recently introduced two new bullets in the Triple-Shock line that are great for hunting big game, and they may suit your needs. One is a .310-caliber 123-grain bullet designed for the slower velocities of the 7.62×39. The other is a .311-caliber 150-grain bullet designed specifically for the velocities produced by the .303 British, 7.62x54R, 7.65×53 Belgian Mauser and the 7.7 Japanese cartridges. Right now they are not available in factory ammunition, so you’ll need to handload them. Unlike military ball rounds, these bullets will give great expansion and penetration, which is just what the doctor ordered.

    Thanks, Ty

    Success Story

    Jerrell Tarbet

    I have been using Barnes bullets for the last 13 years, and have been really fortunate to have lots of luck taking some nice trophy animals. I am a true believer in Barnes bullets and will to use them in the future.

    I shot this Colorado mule deer with my 6.5 x 284 Winchester using a 130-grain TSX. The penetration was unbelievable.

    —Jerrell Tarbet

    Recipe of the Month

    (Use this for elk, whitetail, muleys, antelope and caribou)

    Rub, that’s rub, a mixture of flour, salt and pepper on all sides of the roast.

    Heat good quality cooking oil in a heavy iron skillet large enough to hold the roast. Don’t skimp on the oil or the roast will be dry. Brown on fairly high heat on all sides. If the skillet can be covered and will hold the roast then ok If not, then transfer all the contents including the cooking oil to an already hot crock pot. A crock pot makes it easy to start before going hunting and then when you come in after the hunt, dinner is ready.

    Add two or three large bay leaves. I do not pollute it by adding any vegetables. Cook on low heat all day. I mean all day. My wife starts getting into it about 1 p.m. so I have to yell at her. Depending on where your roast came from (hind quarter, neck) after a few hours you may need to add some water but normally never more than 1/4 cup but I usually never have to add any.

    This produces a roast that falls off the bones so you can serve it over rice, or just serve as is. If you have any left it makes great sandwiches. I have served this to people who hate wild game (without telling them) I think you will like the results.

    Copper Club Member

    From The Lab

    Jessica Brooks, Ballistics Lab Manager

    Full Length Sizing vs. Neck Sizing

    This month’s “From The Lab” was a quick little test to compare full-length sizing vs. neck sizing. Just a bit of a comparison in the accuracy department, and how pressure and velocity are affected. Differences in case growth were also recorded.

    We used a .300 Winchester Magnum pressure barrel and our new 140-grain MPG (Multi-Purpose Green) bullet for this test. A close to maximum pressure load was used.

    We then prepped 50 pieces of new Winchester brass. We sized 25 with an RCBS full length sizing die and 25 with a Redding competition neck sizing die. All brass was initially trimmed to 2.600” for this test and measured after each 5-shot string. The test was shot in one day, the barrel was allowed to cool in between each string.

    We expected the neck sizing to make for less trimming and produce better accuracy. As you can see, with this particular test, the results weren’t all that different one to another. Pretty consistent results across the board. However, we did see some marked difference in the extreme spread and standard deviations for velocity. The neck sized brass was much more consistent than the full length. For example, the lowest SD for the new neck sized brass was 4, and the lowest ES was 9. These figures never went above 12 and 27, respectively. However, the lowest SD for the new full length sized brass was 7, and 18 for the ES, and topped out at 36 and 89 respectively.

    Barnes News


    Congratulations Club-X Prize Winner!

    Daryl Case

    Daryl Case is the winner for the month of January. He won the IST DragPack. Daryl lives on the family farm in Manitoba, Canada. His hobbies include fishing, flying, snowmobiling, and shooting sports ranging from target shooting to big game hunting.

    Prize for February

    SureFire’s 6P LED

    SureFire’s 6P Now Available in Longer-Running, High-Output LED Version

    SureFire®, designer and manufacturer of high-performance, compact illumination tools has released a new Light Emitting Diode (LED) version of its classic 6P Original. This super-efficient, electronically controlled LED produces nearly 25% more light output and runs an amazing 1000% longer, using the same power source, than the 6P Original’s incandescent lamp.

    The 6P LED produces 80 lumens of brilliant light and has a runtime of 11 hours on a single set of batteries. A precision-machined reflector produces a smooth, near flawless beam, and a tempered, impact-resistant Pyrex® window covers the solid-state light emitting diode, ensuring maximum light transmission. The result is user-friendly illumination perfect for camping, navigating trails, and virtually any other outdoor activity. Especially given the 6P LED’s portability.

    Like the original 6P, the 6P LED is made of lightweight but strong aerospace-grade aluminum that’s hard anodized with a black Mil-Spec Type II finish. The flashlight’s total weight (with batteries) is only 5.2 ounces and it measures just over five inches long, making it small and light enough to stick in a pack or pocket. O-ring seals help keep out moisture and dust, and tailcap switching provides convenient one-handed operation. And to ensure the flashlight doesn’t accidentally activate during transport or storage, it features SureFire’s patented lockout feature.

    MSRP for the 6P LED is $85, and it is available through authorized SureFire dealers or direct from SureFire by calling 800-828-8809 or visiting

    Parting Shots From The Lab

    This is a 10-shot target featuring one of our new bullet introductions for 2008. Would you believe it’s our .458 caliber 350-grain TSX? This is a 1/2″ group! We frequently see extraordinary accuracy with our big caliber bullets.

    This is an interesting story. When Fred Barnes was mentoring my father in the early years, one day he noticed a target hanging on Fred’s wall with five .458 caliber 500-grain Barnes FMJ’s strung through a wire hanger in a crude sort of necklace fashion. The target had a 100 yard 5-shot group that measured 1 1/4″. Randy remarked “What’s the big deal? This isn’t a great group.” Fred explained he shot this target with the original .458 Winchester Magnum proto-type rifle he had sent to Winchester. According to Fred, Winchester sent the rifle back, and introduced the cartridge a few years later with some slight variations. Anyway, he pulled the rifle out of the corner one day and fired a bullet at a clean target. Then each year for the next four consecutive years he fired one 500-grain Barnes FMJ at this target, from this rifle, on the anniversary date of the first firing and recovered the bullets. Incidentally, Fred built this rifle on a Mauser 98 action and we have it here at the factory today. I crack a smile every time I see it and think about the history behind that old gun.

    My dad was re-telling this story to me not that long ago and chuckled “Fred was always doing off-the-wall things like that or coming up with a new something or other he wanted to test.” Well dad, I guess that’s what STILL makes our company great, isn’t it! You always say “Ten ideas in the hopper…” And Barnes is STILL the innovator.

    -Jessica Brooks

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