Hunting with 41 mag rifle


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rc109a
March 29, 2009, 08:34 PM
I wanted to get a 30-30 for some deer hunting (heavy woods), but with my intention on reducing the different calibers I reload I thought about getting a rifle in 41mag. How effective do you think this would be? What ranges are expected for a rifled 41 mag? i could not imagine shooting much above 100 yards in the areas I hunt (most likely it is 50 yards or less). I am not looking at going to 357 or 44. I don't have guns in these calibers and have no desire to expand my collection at this time. So what is your take on this? Thanks for the input...:)

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jbkebert
March 29, 2009, 08:56 PM
A guy I used to work with came out to the house to do some shooting. Among the things he brought was a marlin carbine lever action chambered in .41 mag and a Ruger Super black hawk chambered in the same. I had a ball shooting this pair and I found the carbine to be accurate to 75 to 100 yards. He had put a ghost ring rear sight on in place of the dovetail. While I do not own one myself judging by his. I would hunt deer out to that 75 to 100 yard range. We were able to break clays 4" at this distance 90% of the time.

Kernel
March 30, 2009, 03:46 AM
I wouldn't hesitate to take a .41 Mag deer hunting. For shots under 200 yds with good bullet placement it should drop'em like a box of rocks. The problem will be finding a rifle so chambered. Not that many of them out there.

woof
March 30, 2009, 06:14 AM
Check your state to see if it is legal. If so I would use it only under 100 yds.

rc109a
March 30, 2009, 07:02 AM
It is. I was going to use my pistol, but like the idea of a rifle better.

200 yards? That seems like a long range for a pistol round...

Olympus
December 28, 2009, 12:16 PM
I'm interested as well. What are the choices for a .41 rifle?

Daizee
December 28, 2009, 12:41 PM
The .41 is reasonably efficient in a rifle barrel compared to the bigger pistol caliber choices. Like the .357, it can really get a lot of extra mileage out of a long barrel. I bet you'd be effective to 150yds.

With Lil'Gun handloads you can reach ~2000+fps with a 158gr .357 (in a rifle).
I bet you could do the same with the .41 in a 200gr bullet. That puts you squarely in .35cal muzzle energy range, as a comparison with other lever gun cartridges. I bet out to 150yds it would be a real solid medium game gun.

-Daizee

ECVMatt
December 28, 2009, 12:51 PM
I think that would work great given your parameters. The hardest part is going to be finding a .41 Mag Leveraction. They are very popular, yet Marlin only seems to make them on limited runs. I would suggest doing a search on sights for Marlin rifles. I would look at Skinner and XS.

Hope you can find one of those Levers and get her hunting.

Good luck,

Matt

tango2echo
December 28, 2009, 01:34 PM
I've cleanly killed deer at 125 yards with a .41mag scoped revolver and handloads. If you can find a levergun in .41mag I would think 100-125 yards would be within reason on deer-sized game.

farscott
December 28, 2009, 01:48 PM
I do not have a .41 Magnum lever action, but I do have a ten-inch T/C Contender hunting set-up in the caliber. I have it zeroed at 100 yards, and I have confidence that the rig will do the job at that distance. Like the OP, many of my shots on deer are 50 yards or less.

Olympus
December 28, 2009, 02:08 PM
A friend of mine suggested a custom barrel for my Encore in .41 mag. I hadn't really thought about that, but I do have an Encore.

The ballistic data I've seen has the .41 mag beating the 10mm in velocity and engery both with commercial ammo. I might look into a custom Encore barrel to make a short little brush gun as another option.

Maverick223
December 28, 2009, 02:31 PM
Should do very well at the ranges that you will be using it...I would purchase a rifle, not use the pistol as it gives you a nice boost in accuracy, velocity/energy, and better trajectory, but I am sure that the pistol can do the job also. Good luck finding one.

:)

Franco
December 28, 2009, 04:23 PM
I would hesitate to shoot deer with a .41 mag. My brother shot a marlin lever in .357 mag a couple seasons and wounded a few deer (and he's an excellent/accomplished hunter). My son uses a marlin lever 1894 cowboy in .44 mag and I think that's just about right out to 100yds (max) with 240gr or 270gr bullets. I wouldn't go less than .44 mag unless you're shooting very small deer at close range. Just my 2 cents.

Gryffydd
December 28, 2009, 04:25 PM
My brother shot a marlin lever in .357 mag a couple seasons and wounded a few deer (and he's an excellent/accomplished hunter).
How was his shot placement? Range to targets? Any ideas what caused the poor stopping? From the information contained in your post it could be anything. One can be an excellent/accomplished hunter and still make a poor shot every now and then, or have a sight that has been knocked out of alignment or any of a dozen other things...

eastbank
December 28, 2009, 05:57 PM
i have shot two deer with my ruger 77/44 loaded with 28grs imr 4227 and a hornady 200gr xtp bullet, both deer were shot at a little under 100yds with lung hits and both were complete pass thru,s and neither one made 20yds before expiring. i like to carry the ruger in bad weather as its ss with syn stock and a silver 4x compact burris. i think a lever action in 41 or 44 mag. would do the same thing. eastbank.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
December 28, 2009, 06:49 PM
This definitely belongs in the "Hunting" thread, IMO.

Maverick223
December 28, 2009, 07:43 PM
I would hesitate to shoot deer with a .41 mag...I wouldn't go less than .44 mag You do realize that the .41Magnum has nearly identical energy (and can be more in some loadings) and very close to the same diameter as the .44 Magnum...right? It is much more powerful than the .357 Magnum, and while I have never hunted with one, should do fine for deer at short (pistol caliber) range.

This definitely belongs in the "Hunting" thread, IMO.LOL, "Definitely...in your opinion"; but I have to agree.

:)

Matrix187
December 29, 2009, 12:12 AM
A .41 mag is totally fine for deer. I shot a big whitetail doe a couple years ago with my Bushmaster 16" ar15 .223 69 gr SMK, and a year before that I took a buck with my Win 94 Trapper chambered in .357 mag. Needless to say, both worked on the deer fine. I'm sure a 41 mag will probably work BETTER than what I used both times.

W.E.G.
December 29, 2009, 01:08 AM
I would question the accuracy of the .41 Mag at distances beyond 100 yards.

And by "accuracy" I don't mean ideal group sizes you might get by shooting it at known distances.

Most shooters don't judge distance well under stress.

A .41 magnum zeroed for 100 yards is going to drop EIGHT INCHES over just the distance of another 50 yards. Push the shot to 200 yards, and the bullet will have dropped 23 inches.

By comparison, a .308 zeroed for 100 yards drops only four inches at 200 yards.

The "maximum point blank range" for the .41 magnum is only 135 yards.
Outside that, you better have excellent range-estimation skills, and excellent ability/optics to compensate for the steep trajectory of that mortar.

Gryffydd
December 29, 2009, 01:19 AM
A .41 magnum zeroed for 100 yards is going to drop EIGHT INCHES over just the distance of another 50 yards. Push the shot to 200 yards, and the bullet will have dropped 23 inches.
:eek:
What load are you figuring that on?
By my calculations with a 250gr bullet from a rifle you're looking more like -3.63 at 150 and -10.99 at 200 yards.

A good article on this subject, surprised it hasn't been posted yet.
http://www.leverguns.com/articles/paco/41heavy.htm

Maverick223
December 29, 2009, 01:31 AM
A .41 magnum zeroed for 100 yards is going to drop EIGHT INCHES over just the distance of another 50 yards. Push the shot to 200 yards, and the bullet will have dropped 23 inches.I doubt that, it only drops 3.2in. (using a standard, off-the-shelf Remington load) in 100yds. with a 25yd. zero from a pistol with a 4in. bbl.

EDIT: ran the numbers, and darned if you aren't right...the trajectory is weak to say the least. It makes the .45-70 look flat by comparison. I still maintain that it will do fine for the short range that the O.P. specifies (up to 100yds.).

:)

Olympus
December 29, 2009, 09:13 AM
For me, it wouldn't be something that I'd take in hunting situations where I'd be shooting long ranges anyway. I'd consider it to be more of a brush gun and would only use it in places where a maximum shot would be 75 to 80 yards. Effective long range performance isn't a factor for me in this case. I've got plenty of other rifles to take care of that.

Asherdan
December 29, 2009, 12:44 PM
Buddy of mine has an 1894 in 41 mag, mine is in 44 mag. For the way we use 'em I can't see a lick of difference between his with a 210g Gold Dot and mine with a 240g.

We hunt high hills manzanita brush where things happen at 2 to ~100 yards. We both got our last deer at about 80 yards with the same results, complete pass through and a dead deer. It's a good cartridge, but like others have said, good luck finding something like and 1894FG in it.

Gryffydd
December 29, 2009, 12:45 PM
EDIT: ran the numbers, and darned if you aren't right...the trajectory is weak to say the least. It makes the .45-70 look flat by comparison. I still maintain that it will do fine for the short range that the O.P. specifies (up to 100yds.).
What BC did you use? What velocity? A ~250gr bullet should push 2000 fps out of a rifle.

Maverick223
December 29, 2009, 03:24 PM
I used a Sierra 210gr. JHP (which should be suitable for hunting) which has a BC of 0.165, which may not be the best but probably not far off either. I interpolated (between 44Mag. and 41Mag.), due to the lack of rifle data for the .41Magnum and arrived at 1950fps for the muzzle velocity, but I am sure that it could be pushed faster. When I an the numbers, with a 50yd. zero) I arrived at: 100yds: 5.38in. drop; 150yds: 13.15in. drop; and 200yds: 25.57in. of drop.

:)

Gryffydd
December 29, 2009, 03:30 PM
I based my numbers on Paco's article that I posted earlier. He was getting 1900+fps with 270gr bullets.
My ballistic calculator on my phone only had 250gr bullets in .41, so that's what I went with. I think the BC was .220

W.E.G.
December 29, 2009, 04:14 PM
I looked at a "Paco" article.

http://www.leverguns.com/articles/paco/41heavy.htm

...the 41 is an excellent caliber heavy loaded. Marlin has made a run of the their octagon barreled 41 mag leverguns again so we have a perfect companion piece to the handgun. Any time you can push a 270 to 300 grain cast bullet at 1800 plus fps and 1900 to over 2100 foot pounds of muzzle energy from a small carbine length rifle, you’re in lion country power.

Does he actually say he ran a load that hot, or is he just theorizing?
I call B.S.

If he actually did it, I notice he does not mention his load recipe.
I've got a feeling the powder manufacturers would not endorse a load that hot.

Until there is better evidence, I'm more comfortable with John Taffin's data. I must point out, the data is for .44 magnum (not .41 magnum). However, the bullet weights are comparable. The Cor-Bon load being a notable exception, I would otherwise be surprised to see proof that you can pick up 300 - 400 fps, using similar weight bullets, by reducing the bore size 0.019 inches, and using commonly-available components.

http://www.sixguns.com/range/Mlntrpr.htm

http://i227.photobucket.com/albums/dd7/rkba2da/41.jpg

Gryffydd
December 29, 2009, 04:26 PM
It's really not all that amazing. Look at the velocity gains in the .357 magnum in a rifle--something that's well documented. If the .357 can push a 158gr bullet to ~1500fps in a revovler and 2000fps in a rifle, then 2000fps in a 250gr bullet from a .41 mag rifle is well within those same levels of relative performance.

Asherdan
December 29, 2009, 04:40 PM
Let me throw a little actual use data at you fellas about the 41 mag...

Checked with my buddy and he's using the 210g Speer DCHP Gold Dot with a max charge (per Hogdgon) of H110 to get right up on 1850 fps. I'm using the 240g XTP w/ 2400 to get 1762 fps out of my Marlin 1894 44 mag. Here's how they stack up when each is set up for a +3/-3 point blank...

1894 44RM

Range Elevation Velocity Energy
0 yds -1.50 in 1762 fps 1654 fpe
25 yds 0.78 in 1681 fps 1507 fpe
50 yds 2.28 in 1604 fps 1370 fpe
75 yds 2.96 in 1528 fps 1245 fpe
100 yds 2.72 in 1457 fps 1131 fpe
125 yds 1.43 in 1390 fps 1029 fpe
150 yds -1.01 in 1327 fps 939 fpe
175 yds -4.65 in 1269 fps 858 fpe
200 yds -9.63 in 1215 fps 787 fpe


1894 41 mag

Range Elevation Velocity Energy
0 yds -1.50 in 1845 fps 1587 fpe
25 yds 0.72 in 1752 fps 1431 fpe
50 yds 2.22 in 1662 fps 1288 fpe
75 yds 2.94 in 1576 fps 1158 fpe
100 yds 2.80 in 1493 fps 1040 fpe
125 yds 1.70 in 1415 fps 934 fpe
150 yds -0.54 in 1344 fps 842 fpe
175 yds -3.96 in 1278 fps 761 fpe
200 yds -8.70 in 1217 fps 691 fpe


Both are great rounds in a handy levergun, within their limits. For me that's always been 150 yards.

ForneyRider
December 30, 2009, 12:09 AM
Good luck finding a 41 Mag Marlin 1894 FG or S model. They stopped making them and the Gunbroker guys price them accordingly.

I shoot a 41 mag Ruger Blackhawk. Load data in Nosler book is 1650fps with their 210gr JHP and H110. I also really like the Remington 210 JSP for loading.

Recoil kept knocking my scope loose on my Blackhawk with B square mount. I recommend the Hunter Bisley or Hunter Super Black Hawk versions with Ruger rings.

Remington 210gr JSP, Winchester Silver 175gr and Platinum 240gr are great factory ammo. Federal makes a big 250gr lead round.

I think Sierra makes a 170 JHC that should fly out a 20in lever rifle.

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