Parker 300 Grain Match Hunter & Savage 10ML-II

Shot by Bob Parker out of his Savage 10ML-II, this is the very first group with the Parker 300 grain Match Hunter at 100 yards. The uppermost hole is an "old hole," and after one fouling shot Bob popped this .848 inch three shot group with 57 grains of Vihtavuori N120, a borderline clever suggestion from yours truly. Loaded to 2300 fps MV, it looks to be at least a 225 yard center of the body hold combination with no hesitation, hold-over, or adjustments.

The next day, 9/23/2011, Bob Parker fired another groupwith 57 grains N120, again with outstanding accuracy: again, under 7/8 inch at 100 yards.

Bob Parker of Parker Productions has set out to make available the most ballistically efficient muzzleloading projectiles ever offered to the consumer: the Parker Match Hunter series. Originally offered in 325 grain, the most recent release is the similarly profiled 300 grain Match Hunter. Here's what Bob has to say about his 300 grain MH:

The Parker 300 is our newest projectile designed for high velocity muzzleloading rifles. It is extremely accurate and carries devastating down range power.

• Designed for twist rates 1:20--1:28
• Velocity range 2250-3000 fps
• Point of shoulder - high shoulder shot bullet
• B.C. .420 @ 2800 fps
• Maintains over 1000 ft lbs of energy @ 900 yds
• Swaged in aluminum tip
• Jacket thickness .028

The twenty-eight thousandths thick jacket makes for a an extremely tough bullet. As far as I'm concerned, when the subject matter is “big bore” projectiles, rapid expansion is not needed nor is it desirable. No matter what you do, you are going to put a 1/2 inch hole though the vitals and no game animal on this planet can live for very long without any lungs, and they don't. Expansion always means less penetration and inadequate penetration can get you into trouble. That's why, for many years, the Barnes Original Semi-Spitzer Soft Point, with its .032 in. thick jacket, has been a winner on all game for me from 287 yard pronghorn to intimate fat Minnesota black bear and heavy boar. It has never failed to blow through animals like butter and two holes are always better than one.

The higher the impact velocity, the tougher the bullet needed. If you are anchoring animals, breaking shoulder bones, you need a tougher bullet as well. BC's don't take animals, but better ballistic coefficients do flatten trajectories, reduce wind drift, and retain more velocity at impact. All with no increase in recoil, so the benefits are without pain to the shooter.

The 300 grain Parker Match Hunter is a .451 diameter bullet, one thousandth larger than its 325 counterpart for a slightly more accurate fit. It uses the MMP short black sabot, the very same sabot savage recommends for .452 diameter 250 and 300 grain Hornady XTP pistol bullets. The assembled diameter of this combination is a .507 inch outside diameter.

But, does it shoot? I've not tried them yet, but will publish my own results soon. Bob Parker wanted a load suggestion for his Savage 10ML-II, so I suggested my long time favorite 57 grains of Vihtavuori N120 for 300 grain bullets. Bob had an itchy trigger finger and Vihtavuori N120 so he gave it a try. After a fouling shot, Bob shot a three shot group at 100 yards measuring .848 inch center to center, shown above. The load data I've long used, not a Savage Arms Factory Load so use at your own risk, is:

Vihtavuori N120: Start Load: 55 grains Do not exceed 60 grains by weight. (57 grains optimal).

I use Federal 209A shotshell primers and my own .033 inch ventliners. Note that this is NOT Vihtavuori N110, but N120, available from Jeannie Bolda at Kaltron. Here's a recent note from Jeannie:

Just so you know, we do have the N120 available and people can contact me direct to order.
Jeannie Bolda
Product Manager
Kaltron Outdoors
Vihtavuori, Lapua, B & P Shells and MSA/Sordin Ear Muffs
Cell: 815-505-4104

Ballistic coefficients of muzzleloading projectiles are historically low. For example, a 300 grain Hornady XTP has a published static B.C. of .180. Few projectiles used in .50 caliber muzzleloaders in the 250 – 300 grain variety get much over .230 or so. One of the best flyers I've used is the Barnes Original, published B.C. of .291. The published B.C. of this 300 grain Match Hunter is an astounding .420. This is not an actual measured ballistic coefficient, but a theoretical Ingalls table number taken from the projectile shape. Is it that good? I don't know, but I doubt it. Even the 400 grain Barnes Original Semi-Spitzer FB hits .389 static B.C., so there is a limit as to what a .45 caliber 300 grain projectile can do. A .308 Sierra Pro-Hunter SPT, 180 grain, hits.407 @ 2600 fps and above, .415 between 2600 and 1600 fps, and .414 @ 1600 fps and below. Still, you don't know until you measure and I don't know.

What I am confident in saying is that the Parker 300 grain Match Hunter is the best there is in the 300 grain muzzleloading projectile department, and a legit 200 yard B.C. of .350 is quite plausible. We will see. Loaded to 2300 fps, the approximate exterior ballistics are:

Out to 225 yards, center of the body, hit the switch, and go pick him up. The question comes up, how far can I shoot? The answer is, just as far as you are capable. This load is quickly lethal past 550 yards, so at whatever range you can confidently place you shot into a four inch circle under actual hunting conditions, that's your ethical range limit. Whether it is 100 yards or 400 yards, whatever you can confidently do is what you can confidently do. There is still no substitute for shot placement, not even a Parker Match Hunter bullet. Maybe Bob is working on that one?

For more info on Parker Match Hunter bullets and to get yours before Bob sells out (again), see

For Bulk orders, please contact Bob at 208-596-8430.


© Copyright 2003-2011 by Randy Wakeman. All Rights Reserved.


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