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Hammer Bullets

By Darren Abersold

Here’s the scenario, two guys want to build a superior long range hunting rifle and bring it to market. After years of research and development, prototypes, and custom builds, they realize that even the best built custom rifle won’t meet their desired level of long range accuracy and performance without a better bullet. So what do you do? Well, if you’re Montana’s Steve Davis and Brian Holtmeyer, you build a better bullet.

Welcome to this issues section of Countree People. It is my pleasure to introduce you to a couple guys who are starting to make a big hole (or a little hole depending on what caliber you shoot) in the custom bullet and ammunition sector of the outdoor industry. HD Custom Rifles and Ammunition LTD have been around since 2012 but it wasn’t until early this year that Brian and Steve brought out a brand new product that could very well solve the long range dilemma they faced in the past. The product is the Hammer Bullet and I’d like to tell you about it.

How could I describe a bullet as a brand new product? Well, as I’m about to show you, it is. Their concept is so unique in fact, that they have been granted a new patent on its design to protect their interests. Before I get into the specifics about the bullet, I’d like to fill you in on how I came to, in a small way, get involved. 

As many of you know, I live in California. Without going off on a tangent about misguided legislature, I’ll just say that we hunters here in my state are being forced to use non-lead bullets for all our hunting starting in 2019. Good, bad, or indifferent, that is what’s coming. So, during the off season this last year I went on a bullet-testing frenzy. I tested every non-lead bullet I could find. Normally that would be an easy task however, in my case; I needed a bullet that would perform at the lower velocity of my hunting handguns. That is not an easy task when you need a monolithic bullet. I thought I had tested everyone out there ... until I got an e-mail from Steve.

The Hammer Bullet wasn’t even to market yet. Steve contacted me through a popular hunting forum when I asked for advice on my dilemma. He offered to send me some new bullets to try. I jumped at the chance. Could this be the answer to my handgun hunting needs? I was, at the time, testing mainly for my 7mm TCU but Steve was kind enough to send some .308 181gr. bullets for my 30-06 as well. He said they had good success with the .308 cal bullets this year and was eager for me to try some. Try I did, and try, and try, and try. I couldn’t get those bullets to expand to save my life. I hated to do it, but I sent Steve and Brian my results along with the information on the media I used to do my tests.

They were baffled at first. How could they have had such good results, taking over 25 head of big game with their bullet, and mine wouldn’t even expand? They duplicated the tests that I had done and by golly, got the same results. It didn’t take long to figure it out. Using the magnum cartridges they were using, the velocity, even at extended range, was much higher than I was getting at the muzzle. I had unknowingly showed them the velocity at which their bullets WON’T expand. This would not do. They immediately went to work to improve the low end expansion velocity of their entire line, and succeed they did. On the second batch they had me try, I loaded them down to 1700fps and was still getting perfect performance. Whatever they did, the performance of the second generation Hammer Bullets was right on the money. 

One of the beautiful things about their bullet is there is no upper velocity limit regarding expansion. The design is a hollow point bullet that has three petals that expand, start the hydro-static process, then shear off the shank and do their own damage to the soft internal organs. The shank and majority of weight continue on a straight line course that penetrates deeply into off-side muscle and bone often resulting in both an entrance and exit wound. An additional benefit of this type of bullet is that it causes less bloodshot meat. The entrance wound is caliber size and the petals shear off to destroy the internal organs but, at least in my experience which I will get to shortly, don’t damage the off side muscle tissue. The main shank penetrates muscle and bone while being only slightly larger than original bullet diameter. You really get the best of all worlds.

OK, what I have mentioned so far is only the tip of the iceberg. Admittedly, I’m not a long range shooter. I just needed a monolithic bullet to expand at low velocity. However, the Hammer Bullet incorporates a quality that really sets it apart. Let’s talk long range Parabolic Drag Reduction. This is what really sets this bullet apart from all the others. As you can see in the pictures, once you get to the shoulder of the bullet (the first part that touches the lands, or in other words where the bullet reaches full diameter) there are ROUNDED peaks and valleys. There are no squared off ridges anywhere on the bullet. This is where the Parabolic Drag Reduction really shines. Several companies offer Mono bullets that have ridges that help to reduce copper fouling, but the Hammer bullet offers that, plus the added benefit of offering a smooth surface to cut through the air.      

Also, unlike some other companies, the valleys of the Hammer Bullet are slightly under caliber size meaning there really is space to shed some of the sheared off copper resulting in less fouling and, theoretically less pressure, while still offering lenty of bearing surface to ensure enough “bite” in the lands to prevent spin out or stripping of the bullet. This may not be a big deal to most of us, but if you are talking long range shooting, everything adds up to this being a superior bullet. If it helps to keep the velocity up a touch, is monolithic, has an increased low velocity expansion quality, has lower pressure, and is as accurate as this bullet has proven to be, then this might just be exactly what Steve and Brian sent out to build, the ultimate long range hunting bullet.

This was the first year the Hammer Bullet was offered to the public and so far the reviews and comments have been impressive. Interestingly, the first two animals taken by Brian and Steve with Hammer Bullets were a wolf and moose (pictured). Not a bad start for the new kid on the block. The monster whitetail in the picture was taken by Kirby Allen from Allen Precision Shooting, also with a Hammer Bullet. I was so impressed with the qualities of this bullet that I decided to use it on my California Tule elk hunt this year. I had put in to draw this tag for thirty years and finally drew out. I was required to use a monolithic bullet. There are others that would have worked, but my testing on the Hammer Bullet proved to me that it was the bullet I wanted. I blew my first shot, hitting too low in the brisket but my next two shots, behind the shoulder, just destroyed the lungs. There was only a small entrance and exit wound. It was a true “you could eat right up to the bullet hole” shot when I skinned her out. The Hammer Bullet worked to perfection.

Give Hammer Bullets a look and see for yourself. Their web page has much more information on the bullets and other services they offer. Steve and Brian would be more than happy to talk to you about their bullets, complete custom rifle, or custom ammo builds.


Hammer Bullets -

Allen Precision Shooting -