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Berger’s New .338 caliber 300 grain Hybrid Bullet

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Berger Bulletin » Blog Archive » Berger’s New .338 caliber 300 grain Hybrid Bullet

Berger’s New .338 caliber 300 grain Hybrid Bullet
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The bullet shown here represents several new developments at Berger bullets. First of all, this is the first bullet we’ve made larger than .30 caliber. Part of the reason for the excessively long wait for this development was the requirement for an entirely new machine with a longer stroke to handle the longer bullets. The machine that was developed to make this .338 bullet is capable of larger bullets as well and we plan to move into larger calibers at some point in the future. The second new feature of this bullet is the hybrid ogive. The hybrid ogive concept is described in greater detail below. Before getting into that, I want to present the tested ballistic performance of this new bullet which is shown in the table below.

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The BC’s shown in this table represent a 14% advantage over other .338 caliber 300 grain offerings from Sierra and Lapua. This statement is supported by testing done on all three bullets and published in this report: http://www.appliedba...s/338Report.pdf

What is a Hybrid Ogive?
Traditionally, the ogive (bullet nose) is either tangent or secant. A tangent ogive meets the bearing surface very smoothly, whereas a secant ogive has an abrupt juncture with the bearing surface. The figure below shows the geometric differences between a tangent and a secant ogive, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of each.

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Further Analysis
The superior ballistic performance of the 300 grain Hybrid is primarily due to the long ogive and boat tail. However these design features do present some unique challenges not present with other conventional (shorter) designs.

First, these bullets may challenge the OAL constraints of loaded rounds that need to feed through a magazine. If you’re considering these bullets for use in your .338 rifle, be advised this may be an issue and proceed with care in this area. You may need to single load the rounds if they’re too long to cycle through the magazine. There are considerations that can be made when having a custom rifle built (like shortening the throat) which may allow these rounds to feed through the magazine.

The second area where the length of the bullet can be a challenge is transonic stability. The bullet was designed to be stable from a 1:10” twist barrel which it is. However when the bullet slows to transonic speeds (~ 1 mile assuming an average MV) the stability will be more challenged than a shorter bullet from the same 1:10” twist barrel. So as long as you keep your shots under 1 mile, the 1:10” twist is plenty adequate. However if you plan to shoot farther than that, a faster twist might help the bullet’s chances of negotiating the adversities of transonic aerodynamics on stability. Exactly what twist is required to achieve full stability through transonic will not be known until further testing is done.

Future Plans
The .338 caliber 300 grain Hybrid bullet from Berger already has one planned modification, and that is to change the boat tail angle from 9 degrees to 7 degrees. This change has a very predictable effect of decreasing drag / increasing BC by about 2%. The shallower boat tail will also improve stability at transonic speeds by a small amount. This change will occur soon after the initial production runs are finished.

To read a more thorough ballistic analysis of this new bullet compared to some of the existing benchmarks in its class, please see the report at this address: http://www.appliedba...s/338Report.pdf

Bryan Litz
Chief Ballistician
Berger Bullets

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