Security Six and Whitetail


September 11, 2011, 02:35 AM
I recently picked up a Security Six and was thinking about taking it hunting. I've shot Whitetail with my 44 Redhawk, but never with a 357 (dismissing the after rifle shots with my sp101 to the head). With my sp101, I just used 158 gr. to the head when they were still alive, but that is not the same as shooting them down. I was thinking about 180 gr XTP's, and the only reason is the 300 gr XTP's worked so well in my 44.

Opinions seem to vary when it comes to the 357 and Whitetail. Is it PC in the hunting world to use a 357 on Whitetail, and does a 180 gr sound good? I would appreciate any suggestions and will consider them when making my decision.

p.s. practice is a must.

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September 11, 2011, 02:57 AM
I have no qualms about using a .357mag for deer hunting. I personally use a 6 1/2" Ruger Blackhawk with a 30mm 'red-dot' as a tree stand gun, with 158gr SJHP. I will also carry my wife's, yes, my wife's 4" Stainless Ruger Security-Six (with Pachmayer 'Presentation" grips) as a back-up sometimes. A .357mag is plenty effective out to about 50 yds.

BTW, congrats on the purchase!

September 11, 2011, 04:32 AM
I have used the 180 gr XTP's from my GP100 on hogs. Good bullet placement at reasonable ranges and it will work just fine.

September 11, 2011, 05:46 AM
Good morning
It is all about putting that bullet through both lungs, the heart, or severing the spine around the shoulders. Small deer & the 158 is sufficient. Big corn crunchers and I would be using a 180 grainer. I would certainly be restricting my shots to 50 yards & less.
I will also say more deer have been lost to magnum revolvers than any rifle caliber due to lousy shooters and shots being taken. Caliber .357 in a hunting handgun is so minimal as far as penetration and expansion that you need to be well practiced & know the limitations or you will be learning alot about tracking deer. But it can be done if the hunter puts in the practice and shoots within the reasonable limitations of the caliber & barrel length=Velocity/ power of the gun.
Mike in Peru

September 11, 2011, 12:11 PM
Thanks guys,

According to my Hornady manual I can get 1450 with a 158 gr and 1350 with 180gr. I will get them both and try different charges to see what brings the best accuracy. Thanks again

September 11, 2011, 09:26 PM
180gr XTP is a great bullet. Or use hard cast lead SWC between 170 and 190gr.

I feel that with the XTP you have a 100 yard deer gun -- as long as the shooter is capable.

The XTP loaded to 1200fps and sighted at 85 yards, you will have +/- 2" trajectory (roughly) out to 100 yards and also retain 450 fpe.

If you can get it up to 1300 fps (iffy in a 6" barrel) then you will retain 500 fpe at 100 yards.

With iron sights I'm only good enough for 50 yards with my 4" .357.

September 11, 2011, 10:41 PM
Ya gotta shoot a heavy for caliber if ya go past 50 yds & if the animal is over 175lbs. it needs to be a none expanding bullet so it`ll use all it`s energy (or what`s left) to penetrate the vitals .

Mr. Elmer Keith had it rite & it still works ! 358429 mine drop from the mould & dress out to 173 grs.

I zero at 25 so the boolit hits where the front site is, my condo is 63yds from the side of the game feeder ,I put the front site level with there back & squeeze , it falls rite in the vitals.

Any further I pick up the Redhawk with a 1x4 power burris on top. If my eyes go any further to the way side I`ll put an aimpoint on the GP

September 12, 2011, 05:00 AM
Good morning GP100man
Now that almost sounds a bit like luxury hunting. I knew a feller up in Alaska who realised he had more moose in his back yard that he was finding out in the bush..and a whole lot easier to get to the freezer. Sold his caliber.375 H&H and filled his freezer yearly with a lowly caliber .308.
Someone mentioned using hardcast... if you can live with no expansion that is the ticket. I cast my own and a 180 grain GC 50/50 mix will support the pressure and give expansion on deer at 50 yards. Personally I would use 180 gainers for all my hunting with a .357 launched out of my Dan Wesson with either a 8" or 10 " barrel mounted. One day you will see the buck of a lifetime & I sure would not want to have to trust a 158 to the task. I hunt east Illinois & our corn crunchers are BIG. If all I had was a caliber .357 I would be real selective about my ranges and shot angles. I use 41 Mag and the DW´s Supermags (.357 .375 & 414 ) plus 45 Colt just because most every revolver deer lost I have heard about was shot with .357 mag launching a 158 grainer.
Caliber .357 is ruled the minimum caliber for deer in many states... Be real careful with shot placement & angle and it will get the job done but realise there is very little room for any error with the shot.
Mike in Peru

September 12, 2011, 06:04 AM
GP100man ...Mr. Elmer Keith had it rite & it still works ! 358429 ...

Elmer was also loading those in 38 SPecials and seemed to have no problem anchoring game. Deer sized critters have been harvested with 38s and 357s so pick your load, practice and go hunting.

41 Mag
September 12, 2011, 07:18 AM
The one and only deer I have taken with my GP-100 was a 100# doe at 73 steps using the old Speer 146gr SJHP. It was more like a half jacketed HP semi wad cutter, and shot to perfection form that revolver. I recovered the bullet which was lodged in behind her jaw and had opened up back to the jacket but no more. This was after penetrating through just behind her shoulders, and ruining the pump works. She just so happened to have her head in just the right place when I squeezed the trigger to intercept the bullet as it passed through. Talk about a bang flop.

If I were going out today to do it specifically, I would start with the Remington 140gr SJHP, and work my way up looking for the best accuracy. Why the 140, well from my 6" barreled GP's it shoot extremely well, and it is able to get a bit more velocity than the tad heavier 158gr bullets. In testing them out on hogs, they do as good as the heavier ones, especially with expansion. For deer I personally would take the expansion as a good thing as your not looking to shoot them at 100yds, but more within archery ranges.

For shots longer than 50yds I would start easing up the weight scale and looking at the cast WFN types, as they will deliver better penetration at longer ranges.

September 12, 2011, 07:27 AM
Will a .357 kill deer?
It sure will.

Will a scoped 30-06 do a better job?
It sure will.

We've got deer that come up to the house (in suburbia) that I think I could kill with a pocket knife. Seems like when I go hunting though, the "legal" deer won't get nearly close enough for me to waste my opportunity on a handgun shot.

September 12, 2011, 07:50 AM
Mr. Elmer Keith had it rite & it still works ! 358429 mine drop from the mould & dress out to 173 grs.

The 180gr XTP at 1200 fps will work. The #358429 168-173gr (depending on alloy) SWC at 1400 fps works better and is less expensive.
If your revolver is accurate with it, the Buffalo Bore 180gr WLN load can reach 1450 fps in a 6" barrel.

September 12, 2011, 08:36 AM
In Indiana the .357 is the minimum handgun caliber allowed, but with it's velocity it is more than capable of causing a devastating wound channel with proper shot placement. I use the Hornady XTP in my .45 Colt every year, but Buffalo Bore has a decent line of cartridges as well, good luck this season.


September 12, 2011, 08:50 AM
I've taken several deer with a .357 GP100. I use 180 hard cast RNFP, either Buffalo Bore, or my own loads. They work amazingly well.

September 12, 2011, 04:17 PM
I also have a NOE mould that drops a 185gr rnfp boolit ,1 cavity is plain based & 1 is gas checked & can make a HP from either 1.

But have`nt took the time to do any work on loads with it .

Lawdawg45 brings up a good point , is it legal to use a 357 magnum in Montana ???

Here in NC it has to be larger than .24 caliber & centerfire, so now it`s legal to shoot a bear with a 25 auto !!!

September 12, 2011, 07:58 PM
is it legal to use a 357 magnum in Montana ???

GP100man-- I just assumed it was ok, but went and checked anyhow.

Methods & Means of Hunting
• General Season
– There is no rifle or handgun caliber
limitation for the taking of big game
– Muzzleloaders, shotguns with 0, 00,
or slugs, archery equipment, and
crossbows are legal.
• The possession of firearms with
silencers while afield is illegal.

Thank you for reminding me to be a better citizen. "So that's what the regs are for":D

September 12, 2011, 09:32 PM
GP100man-- That condo sounds like a sweet setup!

September 13, 2011, 08:50 AM
Two deer, one a button, the other a doe, with mine. Neither on purpose, just "targets of opportunity" while legally hunting with valid tags on my property. Some states have minimum requirements for barrel length, energy, and so on. I prefer, however, something larger like my 45 Colt Ruger or my 29 Smith 44.

Smokey in PHX
September 14, 2011, 04:06 AM
I have shot deer with the .357, 158gr JSP and SJSP. All have been close range with the maximum distance at about 30 yards. This caliber has sufficient power for both whitetail and mule deer. It is not the power to be that concerned about as much as bullet placement. As always placement is the key to getting quick kills.

September 14, 2011, 01:26 PM
The .357 was originally an outdoorsman's cartridge, and has been used to take just about anything you can think of. It may not be the best for a particular application, but it should be just fine for deer.

I load mine with 158 WFP, hard cast, but I'm not deliberately hunting deer with mine.

September 14, 2011, 02:43 PM
I use 158 gr. xtp heads and they do bring home the deer. My 6 inch Dan Wesson likes Keith's 358429 heads alot. My 173 gr. heads went through both shoulders of a two point mulie at 65 yds. Tastey. My .33 win. goes through both shoulders too but my .357 is lighter. For twenty years a gun magazine writer spouted you must have a .44 mag. to hunt deer. Most of his fan mail said he was nuts. So he hunted with a .357 revolver, using 158 facyory jhp, to shoot a two point whitetail. The bullet went through both shoulders at forty yards. The deer went a few yards and quit. The writer now uses a .357 alot. Practice shooting a distance to find your own: that's far enough. Have fun and bangaway.

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