WW Silvertip ammo-- any opinions?

Discussion in 'General Rifle' started by Range Rat, Aug 26, 2010.

  1. Back in the early '80s I got two elk in Montana when I was living there. I used my 270 Win with WW Silvertip ammo -- I used the 130 grain.

    My dad did a lot of hunting in midcentury, and always used WW ammo with the silvertip bullets. That sentimentality issue may have influenced my choice to buy that particular ammo.

    I discovered the silvertips to be entirely effective on the two elk I killed. For other game such as mule deer I tended to use handloaded ammo, so -- no silvertips.

    It's my impression that the WW Silvertip ammo for high-power rifles is no longer manufactured or sold.

    I do see a type of rifle ammo in the big distributor catalogs that's termed "silvertip." However, I do not think it is the same product. It is not made by Winchester-Western.

    I am not going to put a "dumb" comment that I think Silvertip bullets are "best" -- everything changes. Maybe WW stopped loading this ammo because their experts came up with a different bullet that is better.

    I imagine also that Silvertip bullets are expensive to manufacture, since there's an aluminum cap at the tip. This may have had something to do with their being discontinued.

    I am getting pretty old to do much strenuous hunting any more, but I do still have a box and a half of the Silvertip and still have the .270. So they are on hand if another hunting opportunity offers.

    Has anyone else had experience with this particular ammo?
  2. samuel

    samuel G&G Newbie

    I believe you are referring to the new Ballistic Silvertip ammo which has a plastic or ballistic tip that is silver in color.The old WW Silvertips you refer to are an aluminum cap placed over a lead tip to keep the point from being distorted when they are in the mag and a round is fired slamming them into the front of the box.They were always considered more accurate than other softpoints like Rem. corelokt which often distorted.I suppose this has merit,but from experience I say there is little difference.Still,it makes sense. ,,,http://www.winchester.com/Products/rifle-ammunition/supreme/ballistic-silvertip/Pages/default.aspx ,,,I believe they still make the old silvertip but the new Ballistic Silvertip is a real improvement. ,,,sam.

  3. Sober

    Sober G&G Newbie

    Yah You can buy the old silvertip's from Milsurp ammo site's my buddy just got a 440 rd spam can of 7.62x54R Silvertipped Steelcore FMJ for about 100 bucks. Oh and that ammo was loaded in the 70's and 80's

    Edit: The silver tip is just paint to denote it as steel core light ball ammunition. Any type of expanding or soft point 7.62x54r is a commercial design as all the surplus military ammo was ball.

    At least this is the case with milsurp 7.62x54R which they have only done that in Russia since the 50's so Im not sure this is what your talking about but its all I could think of.
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2010
  4. moosemike

    moosemike G&G Newbie

    You are not talking about the same thing he is. You're talking about FMJ's with a painted silver tip. He is talking about Winchester Silvertip hunting ammunition which was very popular among hunters from the fifties through the nineties. Unfortunately the .30-30 170 nSilvertip is pretty much the last offering left in the Silvertip line. I was fond of Silvertips myself. Some guys complained of overexpansion but I never experienced that. It's still a great load in the 30-30.
  5. Sober

    Sober G&G Newbie

    Thats what I figured but wasn't sure.
  6. Palladin8

    Palladin8 G&G Evangelist

    My friend used them in his 30-40 Krag for hunting. They seemed to do just fine for deer or the elk that I witnessed him shoot. I have only seen the silver tips in pistol ammo now.

    DUGABOY1 G&G Newbie

    I think you are correct, because all military small arms ammo is non-expanding because of the Geneva Convention. This was agreed on by all nations because the idea in warfare was not to kill the opponent, but to wound him to take him out of the fight, and to take an average of three additional people out of the fight to care for each wounded soldier. So all military ammo is designed to wound not kill.

    I agree also with this! If I used factory ammo, I used WW silvertip ammo for hunting for years. The design was made originally because a lot of rifles were tube fed when the silvertip came on the market, and the exposed lead tips would get smashed in the tube magazine. It wasn't designed for bolt action but was found to be useful there as well.

    The 170 gr WW silver tip 30-30 ammo is the best factory ammo ever made for the 30-30 lever actions with tube magazines.

    The best bullet I can think of to take the place of the old silvertip bullet today is the Nosler Partition. It expands about the same amount, and is now available in much of the factory ammo in many chamberings. Of course I rarely use factory ammo, and the Nosler Partitions are available in many calibers, and weights for handloading. The new version of the silvertip with the plastic tip, IMO, is not a well-designed bullet.

    For those who think the Nosler partitions are too soft, or not well designed, let me say. The only "ONE SHOT KILLS" I've ever had on the very tough Cape Buffalo have been with a cartridge most consider too small, and the bullet too fragile. They were shot with a bolt-action 375H&H, and a 300 gr Nosler Partition. All others took at least 4 shots, regardless of caliber or bullet type, to put down, if the brain or spine was not hit.

    One Cape buffalo was quartering slight to his left at about 75 Yds. I placed the 300 gr NP in the crease where the shoulder meets the neck about 8 inches above the brisket. The bullet went in ripping the frontal lobe of his right lung, taking the large blood vessels off the top of the heart, ripping the back half of his left lung. Then into the grass packed paunch, and ended up just forward of the left hind leg just under the skin. He made 30 yds before going tail over teakettle dead as a hammer! That is a lot of vital organ damage, and penetration of around four feet! So don't let anyone tell you that Nosler Partition is too fragile for hunting deer, elk, moose and even brown bear from the proper cartridge in North America. However I wish they had kept making the old silvertip ammo, for back up ammo if I have to use factory!

    .................................................. :)
  8. samuel

    samuel G&G Newbie

    ^ Having used both Win Silvertip and Rem Corelokt on NA game and retrieved literally hundreds of bullets fired into large and small NA game by other hunters and myself,my opinion is once they penetrate you cannot tell the difference as far as terminal ballistics.As to Nosler partitions,what I have seen of them,I like the Rem Corelokt or Win Silvertip better and find better terminal ballistics except when heavy bone is struck,in which case the partition wins hands down.There are people that love the partition and swear by it.For them I say "use them with pride and complete confidence,they are great bullets". Since I try not to strike heavy bone,I still prefer the other two and Corelokt in particular.As stated in another post,the Silvertips had the little aluminum cap (what makes them silvertip) to protect the soft lead tip from being distorted in the mag,thus lending to better accuracy than the corelokt.However I found the difference in accuracy slight,and consider it unimportant in a hunting bullet.After all I am not shooting flies out there.(altho I have wanted to at times,they can be miserable pests) ,,,sam.
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2010
  9. sc928porsche

    sc928porsche G&G Newbie

    When I was young and in the 50's and 60's Silvertips were great. The bronze tipped worked well too. If I could purchace just the bullets today, I would use them for the 30-30 and develope a load for them.
  10. Thanks for the many comments on the old, original Winchester-Western Silvertip ammo.

    One thing that no one mentioned, but a couple hinted at -- the loaded Silvertip factory ammo was/ or is/ a very pretty round. We mainly care how it performs, of course, and not how it looks. But it sure makes for pretty ammo.

    I suppose that impressing that aluminum cap on every round added another manufacturing step and increased production cost a little -- making the Silvertips less competitive with some other softpoint ammo that WW could pump out. May have had something to do with the demise of the Silvertip ammo.

    As for Remington Core-Lokt -- my dad never had an objection to the killing power of the rounds. However, when in Alaska he had a dead shot at a Siberian wolf that had crossed over the Bering Sea. My dad jacked five rounds through his Springfield-- all five primers were well punched. Not one round fired. It cost him his chance at a trophy animal.

    My dad used to be invited around to men's clubs like the American Legion and other clubs to show his 16 mm movies of his Alaskan and Canadian hunts. Every single time, he would pull the five "punched" Remington rounds out of his pocket and pass them around the crowd. The message -- stated or implied -- was, "here's the kind of hunt-ruining junk you get from Remington ammo." I believe I still have those five rounds in a tobacco can up in my dad's old closet, even though my dad is long since "over the rainbow bridge."

    Over a number of years as my dad showed his films and gave his talk, passing around those bad rounds of ammo, I am sure he cost Remington plenty. Hundredsof gun enthusiasts and hunters passed those bad rounds from person to person. So "he who laughs last . . . . ."

    BTW, my dad was featured in hunting articles in Outdoor Life and also the Alaskan Sportsman magazines. His best hunting years were in the mid 1930's.
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
  11. samuel

    samuel G&G Newbie

    I can well believe the story of Remington FTF rounds.Altho never that drastic,I and several friends have had FTF,s from Rem corelokt.But that was no real problem for me as I only liked the bullet and since I reloaded,could not only get them to fire,but make them more accurate. The Silvertips were a tad more accurate,but I liked the bullet action of corelokt better.(just a tad better) and accuracy lost wasn't enough to interfere for hunting. (especially for a "HUNTER" that likes his shots close and sure.) ,,,sam.