What handgun/caliber for deer?

Thread starter #1
What common pistol caliber makes a good deer hunting round? Is there a minimum length barrel needed to get enough velocity? Any other considerations?

What about Hornady +P 230 grain XTP JHP out of a .45 ACP, 4 inch barrel, semi-auto?
 

Inthegarge

Senior Member
#2
Ruger Blackhawk 44 Mag 6 1/2".........................................RW
 

Bam Bam

Senior Member
#6
:shoot:Taurus (M44) 44. mag. or a Raging bull (M444 )44.Mag. Either one with a 8-3/8 Barrell. You can buy either one for $525-$600.
 
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#7
in a semi only a 10mm for me, as far as a revolver a 357, 41,44, 454, 460, 500 whatever you are comfortable with. practice practice practice. I hope to get one with my newest Kimber in 10mm this coming season
 

deadend

Senior Member
#8
While I'm a big fan of the .45acp and carry one regularly, I would not readily deer hunt with it. I don't feel it has the penetration needed over about 20 yards and especially not with expanding ammunition. I've shot some small game with it that led me to this conclusion.
 

chuckdog

Senior Member
#9
The most common, easy to find ammo for, inherently accurate round I'd recommend is the 44 mag. A barrel length of 4"s should be sufficient for good velocity, however a little more length will of course give you a longer sight radius for better open sight accuracy. As we all know, what you have confidence in your ability to shoot is the best one for you!
 
Thread starter #10
I would not readily deer hunt with it. I don't feel it has the penetration needed over about 20 yards and especially not with expanding ammunition.
That is one thing I was worried about. My favorite JHP 230 grain load are tested at 18 inches of penetration and expands out to .68 inch at 25 yards, but the velocity really slows down quick on the .45's.

What is a lower priced accurate revolver setup for .44 mag, maybe with a scope? How much are we talking?
 

chuckdog

Senior Member
#11
I'd go with a standard Redhawk. The Super Redhawk is just too big for the 44 mag. I love the Super in the 454 Casull, but the the regular old Redhawk gets my vote in the 44. I still have a 5.5" one that shoots better than I do. The 7.5" is the shortest one offered with rings now I believe. You can probably find a clean used one in the $500.00 range. You may want to look at the Super Blackhawk Hunter with rings too. I love the old single actions, but I have honestly had better luck accuracy wise with the Redhawks. They're tough, simple, accurate and reliable. I guess you've figured out, "I kinda like the Redhawks." Good luck with your search, ChuckDog!
 
#12
A 45 ACP with a 230 gr ball or jhp will kill em, donw it a few times at real close range, but, it would not be my reccomended choice for deer or hog. A 45 Colt is better as is the 41 mag and 44 mag. I do not like long barrels as they are harder to carry, and mine are with 4 5/8 inch and 5 1/2 inch barrels and have always been plenty. In a 357 mag I would go with a 6 inch though for the extra velocity
and use a 180 gr bullet
 

chainshaw

Senior Member
#13
The Super Redhawk gives an easy way to scope your handgun. If you look hard enough, you should be able to find a used SRH with a scope for around $600-$700.
 

carver

Senior Member
#14
TC encore 7mm08,TC contender .223,S&W model 66 .357mag.
 

HandgunHTR

Steelringin' Mod
#15
What is a lower priced accurate revolver setup for .44 mag, maybe with a scope? How much are we talking?

You can get a good used Ruger Blackhawk or SBH with a 2X or 4X scope for less than $500 all told.

In my opinion there is no need for a double action revolver for hunting. Now that isn't to say I wouldn't use a S&W 629. a Ruger SRH or a Colt Anaconda it is just that I would be shooting them single action anyway.

Now if you want my opinion, I would go with a TC Contender in 30-30 or 7-30 waters myself, but that is just me.
 

idsman75

Senior Member
#16
.45 Colt

Ruger Blackhawk or older model Vaquero with the Blackhawk frame in .45 Colt. Bust open a Hornady manual and load up some 250 grain Hornady XTP's with 2400.

Then agian, you could do what my buddy does. Cast some 230-grain +/- lead SWC bullets, lube/size, and put them on top of 9 grains of Unique. His last shot went clean through and put that deer down. I used his bullets and 8.5 grains Unique to put down the hog in my avatar. Dropped in place (neck shot).
 
#17
As Chuckdog and other have said, shot what feels good to you and keep on shoting until you feel you can hit what you aim at when squeeze the trigger. I perfer the Contender in either 45-70 14in. comp. barrel or 30-30 in 12 in comp. barrel both with red dots
Handgunner 45-70
 

TTom

Senior Member
#18
The old rule of thumb was something like 1,000 ft lbs is minimum energy for deer.

SO you do the math for whatever round you want to use.

Doing the math means whatever round you choose you limit your rage to the distance where the round still has 1,000 ft lbs.

So break out the ballistic tables.
 
#19
I use a T/C Contender in 30-30AI with a 14" bbl for deer and hogs. 125NBT @ 2600fps.
Also a RBH in 44mag 8 3/8 bbl with a 4x Leupold scope.
250grn Beartooth WFNGC with w296.
Two totally different pistols, both get the job done for me.

Coach
 
#20
The old rule of thumb was something like 1,000 ft lbs is minimum energy for deer.

SO you do the math for whatever round you want to use.

Doing the math means whatever round you choose you limit your rage to the distance where the round still has 1,000 ft lbs.

So break out the ballistic tables.
That wasn't the old rule of thumb... that was the law!!! But that has changed several years ago.
 
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