Gear > Ammunition

Barnes VOR-TX Rifle Ammo Review

The new VOR-TX ammo will continue to carry Barnes' banner as the gold standard for quality, accuracy and terminal performance.


Every serious hunter not living in a cave with an address ending in “stan” knows about Barnes Bullets. The X-Bullet and its various offspring have attained legendary status throughout the world as one of the best big-game bullet designs ever conceived. Old gray beards like me remember when the only way to get these bullets in cartridges for hunting was to put them in ourselves. Then, a few decades back, Federal freed Barnes bullets from the tyranny of handloaders and brought them to the masses by putting the bullets in its Premium line of ammo. Later, a few more companies like Norma, Black Hills and Weatherby followed suit. 

Now we have yet another option. This time it’s right from the source. Barnes Bullets has introduced a line of rifle ammunition called VOR-TX. The initial 12-load lineup includes the usual suspects in hunting cartridges, ranging from the .223 Rem. to the .338 Win. Mag., each topped with TSX or TTSX bullets. Except, of course, the .30-30, which has a flatnose (TS) bullet.

When I asked president Randy Brooks if they planned to load their other Barnes rifle bullets like the Varmint Grenade, MPG or Buster he said, “Yes, absolutely!”

Randy and his wife, Coni, have owned Barnes Bullets for decades, but recently sold it to the Freedom Group, the same folks who bought Remington.

“We had grown about as much as we could as a private company,” Randy told me. “To take the next step would require more capital and that helped make the decision to sell. It enabled us to move into the ammo business.”

Currently ammo is being loaded by Remington in their Lonoke, Ark., plant. The people from Barnes worked closely with them to ensure that the quality is up to the high Barnes standards. The plans are to move the full manufacturing of the ammo to Barnes’ Utah plant by early 2011.

I tested some early samples of the .308 Win. and .30-06 Springfield VOR-TX ammo. I really liked what I found. Accuracy was outstanding, rivaling the best ammo ever tested from any of the rifles I used. Better still, the velocity was very close to what is printed on the box. The uniformity of velocity was also excellent, indicating attention to quality control.

The brass wears the Barnes headstamp, and all the cartridges are polished and perfect. While a cartridge doesn’t have to be pretty to work well, this is an indication of the Barnes commitment to quality. In recent years Barnes bullets have come to represent the gold standard for quality, accuracy and terminal performance. From what I have seen so far, the new Barnes VOR-TX ammo will continue to carry that banner. My samples are some of the finest factory ammo I have ever tested.

Share |



Enter your comments below, they will appear within 24 hours

Your Name

Your Email

Your Comment

3 Responses to Barnes VOR-TX Rifle Ammo Review

Richard charon wrote:
December 18, 2013

I love the way the 180 gr. Tsx vor-tx perform out of my cva 35whelen .dropped 2 deer 2013 season in their tracks. Now I want to shoot them in my browing x-bolt 280 .will they load this round for the 280?

Shannon Key wrote:
October 20, 2011

I absolutely love the Vor-tx TTSX 165gr in the 300wsm!! I get half inch groups at a 100 yards and have shot one inch groups at 300 yards. Just got back from a mule deer hunt in Idaho. Made a 403 yard single shot on a buck bedded down and he never got up! Awesome ammo!

cody nickles wrote:
October 04, 2011

OMG Shot my first elk this year wth thie 180gr TTSX Vortx outa a 300 win mag the shot was 75 yards the bull was quartering twords me, i shot him high in the sholder droped befor i felt the recoil of my rifle the bullet went throug his sholder bone and all the way out his (rump) best way to put it. I would have to say every bullet made has a long way to go to catch up with what Barnes has done, iv never seen a more destructive bullet that creates such a wound chanel but yet can penitrate through 50 + inches of elk. Id like to see the mighty nosler partition or berger VLD do that.