Monday, February 2, 2015

Practical Dope On The BIG BORES- By Fred C. Ness

As we continue to skim the bookshelves of home and the library another promising volume comes up packed with information....some obsolete and some useful. "Practical Dope on The BIG BORES" By Ness is a 300+ page reference work on everything from where his book on the .22's left off. In fact this book goes all the way up to the .50 cal cartridges including the .50 BMG. If you have read "PD on .22's" then you would quickly gather  that Ness loves to hunt varmints and do most of his testing on them. "PD on The BB's" starts of course with some smaller big bores in the 25 caliber range and their use on varmints and the like, in fact all the way through the book Ness discuses a good many varmint loads for the various big bore rifles excluding the very large ones however. The book printed after WWII of course has a lot of obsolete load data with obsolete components, however one would be surprised at how much still remains today with some calibers, the bullets they use and powder still in use....proven load combinations that have stood the test of time. The book covers some very obscure cartridges and is packed with great ballistic data as well, great for those interested in the progression of precision performance hunting rifles post WWII. I found a great wealth of knowledge covering America's favorite center fire hunting cartridge the 30/06 as well...Ness dedicates a large number of pages to various loads for the famous '06 including yes....varmint loads sporting pulled 93gr .30 cal luger bullets. Brown bear as well as moose loads with 220gr bullets are also talked about and everything in between that and those little 93gr pills. The book as stated before is older but we find it still has a lot of  great information on design, ballistics and challenges overcome by what was then cutting edge technology.....or desperation for needed performance out of what was at hand.

"Practical Dope On The BIG BORES" By Ness is a great book to add to your library and read if you are the kind of person that is interested in attaining a more intimate understanding of the performance requirements of rifle, cartridge, powder and bullet of choice for either target work or deep woods hunting. You might not agree with everything contained in the 300 some odd pages but a lot of good information is covered all of which gets a body (novice or advanced) thinking about the physics of bullet performance. 

The copy used in this review was obtained through my local library loan program but I sure will be on the lookout for a copy for myself as I learned a great deal and desire a permanent copy for future reference. Like Ness' previous book  this one was a copy of a special 1500 edition run. 

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