best deer hunting 357 pistol


October 16, 2007, 04:38 PM
I want a 357 mag that can handle a steady diet of 357 180 grain bullets at near max loads.

no scope, 6inch barrel maybe 8" I don't think my colt trooper V is up to the challenge.

Taurus, S&W, Ruger

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Steve C
October 16, 2007, 04:43 PM
Ruger Black Hawk
Thompson Center

October 16, 2007, 04:56 PM
S&W 686 however shot placement is critical if deer hunting with a .357, range should be kept to 50ft or under. I plan on taking a few with my 44 mag 629 this year.
Good Luck

Ohen Cepel
October 16, 2007, 04:56 PM
For what you're talking about doing I second the Ruger or the Thompson.

I don't think the Taurus or Smith will stand up to that much punishment.

I've thought about the same thing and I would go with the Ruger. More portable than the Thompson and they feel better in my hand.

October 16, 2007, 05:09 PM
I'd look at a Smith L or N frame. A K frame or your Trooper are likely up to the load, but there's no reason to wear out the Colt and it's a good excuse to get another gun. Ruger Security Six or GP100 would also be excxellent choices.

October 16, 2007, 05:13 PM

October 16, 2007, 06:14 PM
Blackhawk, by far.

The standard Blackhawk .357's are built on a .44 mag class frame. They'll take a crazy amount of punishment. Similarly, a Freedom Arms 83 in .357 is also a .357 built on a frame designed for much heavier calibers. FA's a lot more pricey though.

There was a run of the Acusport Bisleys in .357. Same frame as the Blackhawk. There's one on Gunbroker.

October 16, 2007, 06:20 PM

October 16, 2007, 06:29 PM
I hope to put the decision over the top...


I carry mine every deer & elk hunt because sometimes they get too close to pop with the .270, and I really want to take the trophy picture with the Blackhawk.

Vern Humphrey
October 16, 2007, 06:31 PM
I like the Blackhawk. In fact, I'd choose the .45 Colt version instead of .357 and handload for it. That's a great deer gun.

October 16, 2007, 07:11 PM
If I was concerned about it as you seem to be, I'd get a 6" Ruger GP100 or a Model 27 Smith.

October 16, 2007, 07:50 PM
Pick up a used Dan Wesson 357 Maximum.. you can hot load 357 Mag, or scary hot Maximums. They can usually be had for cheap. Holsters are hard to find though.

October 16, 2007, 07:57 PM
Another vote for the Blackhawk! A GP-100 would be fine too. A .44 would be even better!

October 16, 2007, 11:16 PM
I'll second the vote for either a 6" Ruger GP-100 or the Blackhawk if you prefer single-action.

October 16, 2007, 11:40 PM
Ruger gets my vote. Blackhawk or GP 100 would do nicely.

October 17, 2007, 12:56 AM
Find a Ruger Redhawk.

October 17, 2007, 01:06 AM
Find a Ruger Redhawk.

Geez, you and Dr. Rob are sending the poor guy on a treasure hunt. ;)

I don't know about you guys, but I don't see Wesson .357 Max's or .357 Redhawks up for sale very often.

October 17, 2007, 04:08 AM
Some people are lucky enough to walk right up on one because they don't know they can be scarce and hard to find. It's better to get educated now in case one is found than to pass by one not knowing it will fill the need he has. He need to know all of his options.
How about this then..........a S&W Model 28 (also known as the Highway Patrolman).

October 17, 2007, 04:36 AM
Speaking of .357 Redhawks, there's one on Gunbroker right now.

October 17, 2007, 05:58 AM
Get a 27-2 S&W in 6". The "N" frame platform will shoot upper end 180's 'til Hell freezes.... I've got a couple that shoot great, wonderful triggers. 1.5"-1.75" (off a rest) are typical with a 180 gr. CP and AA9-1250 fps.

October 17, 2007, 09:16 AM
Whats wrong with the tarus tracker?

October 17, 2007, 10:28 AM
One more for the Ruger Blackhawk if you can't afford Freedom Arms. Mine is quite accurate and 180s are a steady diet. I don't know if it'll ever wear out. It's taken a couple of deer and missed a hog last year.:banghead: You don't need DA in a hunting revolver. In fact, I consider DA as undesireable. There is no need for the extra hinges and complication of a DA design in a hunting revolver, simple means strong. KISS. I don't think the Redhawk is any stronger a gun than a Blackhawk and it's HUGE by comparison. An N frame Smith? Oh, give me a break, it's a J frame in strength compared to the Blackhawk. There's this guy named Linebaugh that builds 5 shot cannons in the .460-.500 class on the Blackhawk. An N frame is totally incapable of containing such pressures in a custom build. That's why Smith has the X frame. Oh, an N frame is strong enough, but you wanted the strongest, right? The Blackhawk isn't a compact gun, but for all its strength, it's easy to tote on a belt.

But, I just love single actions, anyway, but they do have BIG advantages in a field and hunting gun. Unlike Vern, I have a .357 AND a .45 version of the Blackhawk. :D

Ghost Tracker
October 17, 2007, 10:33 AM
A steady diet of big, honkin' .357 mag loads? Ruger GP100, Blackhawk, or S&W M27.

October 17, 2007, 10:37 AM
Get a 27-2 S&W in 6". The "N" frame platform will shoot upper end 180's 'til Hell freezes....
That's what I'll be using for deer next month. I just wish Midway had shipped my bullets with the .357 cases... :(

Oops, It's Dillon I'm waiting on for my bullets...

October 17, 2007, 10:41 AM
Oh, yeah, nothing wrong with the Contender, either. Mine's claimed 5 deer, but it's not in .357, prefer .30-30 Winchester with a 180 Nosler Ballistic Tip at 2100 fps muzzle velocity in that one, reaches out there with precision revolvers can only dream about.

October 17, 2007, 11:10 AM
A GP-100 is a good strong gun and a blackhawk is too, just need to make up your mind if you want a single or double action. That Redhawk on gunbroker would make an damn fine hunting gun, mine is a 5-1/2" version that shoots max load 180's (by a speer manual) very good with little recoil due to the weight of the gun. If you look at the picture on gunbroker of the redhawk with the cylinder open you can see how thick the cylinder walls are on these guns.


October 17, 2007, 12:37 PM
The FA 83 in 357 has no equal, at least in revolvers, in terms of maximizing performance for the caliber. If that isn't in the right price range...I'd vote Blackhawk, Redhawk, Dan Wesson, S&W 28, GP100 in that order. If a FA is affordable, the FA 97 is handier than the 83 but you won't get the +p+ performance with 180's. My .02, dvnv

October 17, 2007, 12:48 PM
I'm taking this one this year

October 17, 2007, 03:02 PM

October 17, 2007, 03:32 PM
I have a 6" GP-100, Ruger Blackhawk Anniversary in .357, and Ruger Blackhawk Anniversary in .44mag. Any of these would do the job. Personally, I can shoot the GP double action just a well as I can shoot the Blackhawks, and would prefer to carry it in the field. I prefer the GP to any revolver I have ever shot. Just my $.02.

October 17, 2007, 03:48 PM
Im going to use a 66 and 158 gr bullets. My son did his deer with that in the lungs-one shot.

October 17, 2007, 04:20 PM
You've just described my 686! ALL I SHOOT is max 180 grain Hornady XTP's. I've fired thousands of rounds through it and had ZERO trouble. ZERO. I shot four big Montana does at ~100 yards with this revolver before I scoped it. If you really want performance in .38 caliber, give a good look at a 10" .357 Max in a Contender or Dan Wesson. Awesome guns!

October 17, 2007, 05:02 PM
The S&W Model 27 or Model 28 are both on the N frame, the same as the .44 mag. Ruger Redhawk is good also. The .357 wil be good out to 75-100 yds. Wouldn't recommend more than that. It's all about shot placement. Good luck.

Brian Williams
October 17, 2007, 10:19 PM
I use a custom S&W model 65 with a Standard barrel and target trigger and hammer.

Snapping Twig
October 18, 2007, 02:56 AM
The 686 is totally compatible with exclusive use of high power heavy .357 rounds. Anything the GP100 can do, the S&W L frame can as well.

It all boils down to what feels right in your hands.

October 18, 2007, 03:20 AM
I would go with an L frame 686 it was designed specifically around the .357 round after some people and departments had problems with their K frames loosening up or going bad on the timing, that and forcing cone erosion or cracking after long hard repeated use of full power loads.

Most people would never shoot that much but that fact that some did so led S&W to develop the L frame both to compete with comparable Colt's and to build a more solid .357 service and hunting revolver capable of digesting more rounds before signs of excessive wear would show.

The L frame was the last of the duty belt combat magnums built tough in the spots that need it without becoming too heavy it was the frame and model series S&W built specifically around their .357 Magnum cartridge and not on a .38 or .44/.45 frame

Smith & Wesson's are made from forged machined steel and not castings.

Stronger and lighter is better if you pack or carry it allot, why carry more weight than you have to?;)

I have both Ruger's and Smiths but for constant or consistent heavy .357 heavyweight bullets and loads I'd choose the L frame 686 or N frame 27.:D

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