Soft-Point-Boat-Tail (SP-BT) Bullets Explained
The soft-point boat-tail, abbreviated SP-BT in most areas, is a relatively popular but “no-frills” style bullet primarily used in rifle ammunition for long range shooting.
Many F-Class competitive shooters still use this style of bullet as it is a proven performer. With the variety of match grade ammo on the market, there will most likely be a load that will perform admirably in your rifle.
The soft-point of this bullet acts nicely as a sort of replacement for a hollow point if you can’t use those wherever you’re going. The soft-point crushes, deforms and causes a good amount of damage when it strikes a target. Depending on the caliber you choose, the SP-BT can be used for everything from vermin to elk.
Soft-Point Boat-Tail Features
Soft-Point – The soft point is obviously one of the top features of this bullet type. These are almost always made of lead and they expand, deform and cause a good amount of damage to soft tissue when impact occurs. This increases the odds of taking down animals immediately. Some soft points with almost no jacketing around the bullet are well known for bouncing off bone leading to some impressive internal damage.
Boat-Tail – The boat tail design is preferred by snipers so that should tell you a lot right there. You’re looking at very good accuracy at long range, this is due to the excellent ballistic coefficient of the round. Trajectories will be flatter and the bullet will be less likely to change course, even slightly. Grouping your shots with a boat tail bullet is easier and gives you a more predictable outcome.
Variety – As mentioned above, you can find the SP-BT in a wide variety of calibers. You can also get a lot of different levels of jacketing, metals used and some mid-tier to high-end brands offer more specialized versions for more specific use. Several ammo manufacturers use this design as a basis for varmiting, target shooting and large game hunting products. With bullet makers like Sierra and Nosler producing these bullets in virtually every common centerfire caliber, it is hard not to find the bullet to suit your particular need.
Overall, this is a reliable, well-known and popular bullet type that many people probably already have in their ammo cache. Reloaders can use them for all kinds of special uses giving them even more versatility compared to some of the newer more high-tech bullet styles.