338 Marlin deer
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Thread: 338 Marlin deer

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    61 times

    338 Marlin deer

    Shot another white tail buck with the 338ME this weekend. Third one with the FTX, this one struck the front shoulder, bullet fragments and bone fragments everywhere, deer did not go down, had to track a ways, shot him again and he went down and stayed down. Probably say 40 yard shot on first hit, I have had the others come apart somewhat too, but the bullet frags did enough damage and what was left of bullet kept going and did damage also.
    Unless I know I am going to shoot farther than 200 yards, I will stick the Remington 250gr bullet, never shot more than once and the two I have shot with that bullet never took a step. AND there was very little meat damage, second one I shot with that bullet caught part of front shoulder also, but just went on through.

    I would be okay shooting hawk bullets at whitetail too, but more and more I am not liking the FTX bullet performance.

  2. #2
    Gun Wizard
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
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    7683 times
    What no pics. Glad you got your deer. There have been several complaints about the FTX bullets here on MO.
    Ret_Eng and Marlinjunkie like this.
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  3. #3
    Certified Gunnut
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    Apr 2013
    Verdigre, NE
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    Only complaints are hitting them in heavy areas. Lung shots they perform perfectly. That is what they are designed for. But if I was a shoulder shooter I wouldn't shoot them either.
    Ret_Eng and Marlinjunkie like this.
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  5. #4
    Certified Gunnut
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    Jan 2015
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    Many here would summarize the FTX as "usually quite accurate but somewhat frangible."
    Ret_Eng, Vooch, Traveler and 1 others like this.

  6. #5
    Marlin Marksman
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    1412 times
    I shot one with the 338ME factory round. Shot from above and ahead. Bullet went in at crease between neck and shoulder, angled down and back out of chest, three ribs from the rear of cavity. The deer went completely stiff, reared up on hind legs and fell backwards.
    I have shot several with 45-70 and 450ME using top end loads with Speer 300 JHP. But I shoot them in the lungs. No meat loss and they never move from the spot.
    I still remember one I shot with a 30-06 that turned as I shot. Bullet went in rear of chest cavity and exited out opposite shoulder. Lots of meat damage.
    I have used 30-06, 35 Rem, 33 WCF, 45-70, 338ME, 450ME, 50-70 Govt and 12 gauge slugs. All do a fine job, so long as I stay off of the front shoulders.
    Always better to carry "too much" gun and too many cartridges...
    Marlin 1894SS(2009), Winchester 1886 Extra Lightweight rifle(1910), Springfield Trapdoor carbine(1880), Sharps carbine(1863)
    I like big calibers

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    360 times
    Not to hi-jack the thread but to comment on bullet placement. There was a time here in Louisiana when I saw lots of deer and killed a good many but our Wildlife and Fisheries gar-belled that. Anyway, our deer are far more spooky and nocturnal than I have ever seen. When you are given an opportunity to fill your tag you better take the first ethical shot presentation you can get. I'm NOT an advocate of the Texas Heart Shot but I've learned to take them from almost any other way they stand. I like quartering shots, I like shots where the deer is facing me. There is nothing wrong with shooting somewhere beside "right behind the shoulder." If you know your limits and know how your bullets perform and know deer anatomy you can take and make the shot. At times that I am hunting areas of extremely thick briar thickets, where you have to go on hands and knees to get through, or I am hunting close to water I shoot for bone. I want a shot that number one, will strike vitals and number two will hit bone and shoulder muscle. If I know I can make a neck shot in those same conditions I'll take it. Even if it's just getting toward the end of shooting hours I like to take high shoulder shots that strike muscle,scapula and spine. But you MUST know your limitations, you must know your bullet and you must know deer anatomy. I've said that twice now. Do I need to say it again for emphasis? For another crowd I might need to say it many more times but I think you've caught on by now! I no longer have the 338MX and I didn't have an opportunity when I had one. (wish I still had it) But hearing the performance of the flex tip I know that I would either change bullets or not take shots where I'm not certain that the bullet will handle the penetration needed. Sorry if this sounds like a rant! (It probably is)

    Last edited by Goat; 02-22-2020 at 03:20 PM.
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  8. #7
    drs is offline
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Nashville, NC
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    I have shot a couple hogs and several deer with the FTX bullets with my .338 MX's. The bullets did seem to be of light construction, but have held up. I have hit brush and the bullet still performed well enough to kill the deer DRT. The furthest I had a deer/hog go is less than 20 yards with most DRT. A couple of the shots have been through the shoulders, which actually passed through. Over all opinion of mine for the whitetails here in NC, is the combination of the FTX and the .338 MX is an awesome deer rifle.
    turbobug likes this.

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