By Aaron Carter, American Rifleman
It’s difficult to believe, but Remington’s Core-Lokt is a 75-year-old bullet design, and yet, quite unsurprisingly, the no-frills projectiles continue to fill countless freezers each fall. The reason for Core-Lokt’s longevity can pinned to its balance of ballistics and cost. Let’s examine Core-Lokt.
Through the years, I’ve noted that, in spite of the widely touted “mechanical” lock, these cup-and-core projectiles, which are available in both soft-point (SP) and pointed soft-point (PSP) configurations, typically shed considerable weight during expansion and penetration, especially when velocities approach (or are in excess of) 3000 f.p.s.; however, “washed-off” material serves to enhance the projectile’s tissue-disrupting capabilities, which quickens expiration of the animal. For those hunters wanting high retained weight, the newer Core-Lokt Ultra Bonded would be your go-to option, though it’s considerably more expensive. Despite a noteworthy loss of weight and wide upset diameters (oftentimes exceeding two times the bullet’s original diameter), Core-Lokts consistently attain depths necessary for maximum terminal effect—particularly on America’s premier game animal, the thin-skinned and lightly built whitetail deer.
Seldom are recovered Core-Lokts picture-perfect, which some hunters might knock; however, such a quality isn’t necessary for it to perform its function. If you’re holding the upset bullet, then its job was fulfilled. Because of the flat-base projectiles’ less-streamlined shapes, they experience more wind deflection and drop than bullets that are more aerodynamic. This results in less energy delivered on-target. Unless one considers himself or herself a “long-range” hunter, and thus routinely stretches shots distances beyond 300 yds., then the effects of a lower ballistic coefficient are minimal and a non-issue.
I’ve found Remington’s Express Core-Lokt center-fire ammunition to exhibit better-than-average accuracy across a wide range of rifles in various calibers; if a particular firearm “likes” traditional-type, heterogeneous bullets, there’s a good chance that Core-Lokts will perform well. I cannot recall an instance in which they performed egregiously accuracy-wise, which is one reason why non-hunters would utilize them, too. The other reasons are: Express Core-Lokt ammunition—in an array of chamberings—is widely available and always among the least-costly options on stores’ shelves. For a general-use “target” load, Core-Lokt’s price is comparable to imported non-full-metal-jacket loads, and the benefit is American-made ammunition with reloadable brass cases of respectable quality. There’s much to like about Core-Lokt. To celebrate Core-Lokt’s 75th anniversary, Remington will offer it in special packaging. What’s your experience with Remington Core-Lokt ammunition?
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