.357 lever action rifle vs M1 .30 Carbine?


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DavidB2
June 4, 2012, 10:38 AM
If chosing a backup rifle to hunt deer; especially close range 50 -80 yards shots; which rifle (.357 or M1 Carbine) would you chose? I personally think the .357 would be more effective; but am interested in your feedback. I am debating on purchasing either of these rifles; and appreciate suggestions.

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Jason_W
June 4, 2012, 10:55 AM
In terms of terminal performance, the .357 rifle wins. With proper handloads, you can get a 158 grain bullet traveling close to 1900 f/s at the muzzle and a 180 grain bullet close to 1800. 125 grain bullets will break 2k.

Both guns will be close to medium range propositions.

scotjute
June 4, 2012, 10:55 AM
My father for a while carried a scoped M-1 carbine in truck for deer when he was raising watermelons commercially. He quit using it after a while as nearly every deer shot required long tracking or else they disappeared tho shot.
.357 has heavier and bigger diameter bullet. Several people on forums have described it as satisfactory on deer when used inside of 100 yds.

Husker_Fan
June 4, 2012, 11:12 AM
I love the M1 Carbine, but I'd go with a .357 lever gun (if legal). The differences in ballistics don't phase me, but the terminal performance will be better with a .357. The M1 is really limited in bullet selection and I'd prefer a good hunting design like a heavy XTP.

That said, I love the M1 with soft points for HD and it is the funnest plinking gun I've shot.

DavidB2
June 4, 2012, 11:21 AM
The local gun store has a Plainfield M1 in great condition at $475. Not sure how great a deal that is.

I can get a new Rossi M92 .357 20 inch barrel for $430. Choices, choices.

MCgunner
June 4, 2012, 11:29 AM
Love the .357 in a carbine. To 100 yards, proper load, it'll do anything a .30-30 will do. I would NOT hunt with an M1 Carbine, cruel to animals.

I've owned a Rossi 92 for 25 years. I haven't hunted with it, much, but did shoot a doe at 80 yards with it, only went about 25 yards with a great blood trail, shot with a gas checked bullet weighing 165 grains and clocking over 1800 fps. I can load that bullet up to 1900 with Li'l Gun, great powder for the 20" carbine barrel, but I load it a little shy of that 16.8 grain charge, clocks about 1850.

bannockburn
June 4, 2012, 11:35 AM
Given the choice between the two guns I would also go with a .357 lever action over an M1 Carbine. The Plainfield M1 Carbine was a later commercial copy of the military issue M1 Carbine and as such not all parts are interchangeable.

303tom
June 4, 2012, 11:39 AM
Ballistically they are the same, .357 mag 125gr. bullet around 2000 fps & a 1000 ft. lbs. energy. The .30 carbine 110gr. bullet around 2000 fps & a 1000 ft. lbs. energy, but the .357 mag. makes a bigger hole & wound track..........

MCgunner
June 4, 2012, 11:52 AM
Ballistically they are the same, .357 mag 125gr. bullet around 2000 fps & a 1000 ft. lbs. energy. The .30 carbine 110gr. bullet around 2000 fps & a 1000 ft. lbs. energy, but the .357 mag. makes a bigger hole & wound track..........

You under estimate the .357 by a few hundred ft lbs. But, at 100 yards, my load is making about 700 ft lbs as calculated by a ballistics program using a conservatively estimated BC for the bullet, still kills quite dead at that range. Think about that, my hottest load in my Ruger 6.5" blackhawk makes 785 ft lbs muzzle energy and I've killed hogs quite dead at 60 yards with it. The rifle is making nearly as much energy at 100 yards as the handgun at the muzzle. It's got a big, flat 165 grain lead bullet that fully penetrates and cuts a nice round hole while giving about 3" diameter of visual tissue damage. That's based on the one I shot at 80 yards. The wound channel impressed me. It was a lung shot, heart was not touched.

An advantage of the .357 is the fact that you can use those heavy, flat pointed Keith style SWCs or if you just HAVE to have a hollowpoint, load a 180 XTP in front of an appropriate amount of Li'l Gun, haven't worked that load up as I like my cast bullets in the caliber.

I would NOT use a 125 grain JHP on deer. I'd worry about enough penetration. I don't even use 125s for self defense in revolvers, hard on the gun and generally not as accurate as a Speer 140 JHP, or at least I've yet to find the 125 grain bullet that can match a Speer 140JHP's accuracy. If 125 grain stuff stopped production, wouldn't break my heart. :D

For hunting, the M1 Carbine round simply is NOT appropriate for deer sized game.

http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=100

5. 18.5 inch Marlin 1894

a. Item 19A/20-180gr. Hard Cast = 1851 fps
b. Item 19B/20-170gr. JHC = 1860 fps
c. Item 19C/20-158gr. Jacketed Hollow Point = 2153 fps---- Can you believe this?!!!
d. Item 19D/20-125gr. Jacketed Hollow Point = 2298 fps---- Or this?!!!

Note, energy of load C 158 grain JHP is 1626 ft lbs. My handload using a 165 grain bullet at 1850 is 1253 ft lbs.

USSR
June 4, 2012, 12:39 PM
Ain't one gonna kill something that the other won't as well. Pick the rifle that you feel comfortable with.

Don

MCgunner
June 4, 2012, 12:52 PM
So, Don, would .22 short be a good deer caliber? :rolleyes: Just use the rifle you're comfortable with?

There was a company converting the M1 Carbines into something like .44 mag or maybe it was .45 Wiley mag or something, can't remember. I don't think they're around anymore.

Old judge creek
June 4, 2012, 12:57 PM
I'd take the 357 magnum over the 30 M1 Carbine every time.

Owen Sparks
June 4, 2012, 01:08 PM
The .357 is the best choice simply because of the wide variety of expanding bullets suitable for hunting.

greyling22
June 4, 2012, 01:29 PM
357 is a better hunting round, and a 44mag even better. and a 30/30 may be best.

that said, my grandfather killed quite a few deer with the m1 carbine and a jhp. Now deer here in east tx are small. He shot squirrels with fmj.

the lever gun will be more versatile and possibly more fun than an m1. ammo's probably cheaper too.

SwissArmyDad
June 4, 2012, 02:47 PM
So, Don, would .22 short be a good deer caliber? Just use the rifle you're comfortable with?

Respectfully, I think Don meant, between the two rifles mentioned "choose the one you're comfortable with", as they're balistically very similar.

I don't think he was advocating that the OP choose ANY rifle he/she is comfortable with
like the .22 you mentioned.

For me, it'd be neither. If I needed a handy ranch rifle other than my AR, I'd go with a .30-30 marlin. The rounds are a bit more expensive, but with a good peep sight, or 1-4x scout mount scope and good ammo, it'll hit a deer like thor's hammer out to about 150-200 yards. Same price range for a nicely patina'd used model.

my .3 cents. :)

DavidB2
June 4, 2012, 03:06 PM
I have a .308 and .243 as my primary deer rifles. I only want something else as a backup that will also be a fun plinker.

USSR
June 4, 2012, 03:08 PM
Thank you SwissArmyDad, for your defense of the intent of my statement from what was obviously a cheap shot.

Don

SwissArmyDad
June 4, 2012, 03:27 PM
I have a .308 and .243 as my primary deer rifles. I only want something else as a backup that will also be a fun plinker.

haha, sounds more like a backup to your backup! Those two are good deer medicine. :)

Might you consider an AR15? I know they're not everyone's cup of tea, but a 5.56 with good ammo is a pretty good stopper, and certainly very fun for plinking...

You could spend a few hundred more, and pick up a .22LR conversion kit with bolt and magazines.

MCgunner
June 4, 2012, 03:30 PM
between the two rifles mentioned

Okay, but I don't consider either a .22 rimfire OR a .30 Carbine appropriate for even small east Texas deer. BETWEEN THE TWO, the .357 magnum is capable, nearly as capable as a 30-30 to 100 yards. The .30 Carbine is too much for small game and too little for medium game. And, if you don't handload, ammo isn't as affordable as either .357 or .22. If you DO handload, good luck policing your brass.

Truth be told, I don't hunt with my .357 carbine much at all. I've shot ONE deer in 25 years and some small game with it using a 105 SWC in .38 brass at 900 fps MV which is 1.5" at 50 yards accurate. That's really what I like about the gun, its versatility. It's ready for anything. :D

I mostly use one of my hunting rifles for deer, .257 Roberts, .308 Winchester, or 7mm Rem Mag. But, lately, I've been hunting with a .50 cal black powder inline. I've hunted a lot with handguns, and I'm going to add my bow to the list, I hope soon. :D I just kinda bored of shooting deer with high powdered rifles.

I also have a couple of SKSs, they make GREAT knock about guns, though a lever gun is lighter. My Rifle is set up with a 5 round mag which doesn't protrude like the 10 rounder and makes the gun a lot nicer to handle in the field.

There's just something about a lever gun, though, flat action, easy to grab right at the balance point, be it a Marlin .30-30 or .357 carbine. The ONE thing I don't like about my .357 carbine when I use it as a truck or knock about gun is the fact that I have to jack each round out of the magazine when I get back to the truck. I usually just load 3 or four rounds in it so that isn't as much a hassle. The SKS, I can just dump the mag from the floor plate. :D

Other than the fact that it's a little heavier, the SKS is just as handy set up the way mine is as is a M1 Carbine, 154 Wolf soft point is CHEAP for it, and it's a semi auto in a more appropriate hunting caliber, short range for sure, but good to as far as a .30-30. They ain't that accurate, but mine'll shoot the 154 Wolf to 2.5" at 100 yards. That's good 'nuf for a truck gun. I had a scope on it, but I took that off. Just seemed stupid to hunt with it when I have better, more accurate rifles. Makes a better truck gun the way it is.

Just some ideas and opinions and experiences. SKSs aren't the bargain they were in the early 90s when I got my rifle for 75 bucks. Man, that was a DEAL! :D The thing has been awesome in its various rolls over the years.

Here's the SKS rifle with the scope on it. That scope's on my CVA Wolf now. :D Ammo has gone up, but it's still cheaper to plink with and makes a better backup deer gun IMHO. Surplus FMJ has gone up, but it's still south of what .357 or even .38 can cost. I went crazy ordering the Norinco stuff in the day, 80 bucks a thousand back then. I still have over 1000 rounds of it left.

http://i25.tinypic.com/tasrba.jpg

SwissArmyDad
June 4, 2012, 03:37 PM
Thank you SwissArmyDad, for your defense of the intent of my statement from what was obviously a cheap shot.

Don


Nah, no worries, McGunner just misunderstood, I think.

Sometimes our fingers type faster than our brains process. Me included..hahah. :D

A Pause for the Coz
June 4, 2012, 06:00 PM
I would choose the 357 mag. Actually I used my Rossi M92 this year. One thing to bear in mind though regarding the New Rossi's. The 16 in barreled carbines have a 1 in 30 twist rate. Having a real real hard time stabilizing any 158 gr and heavier bullets past 50 yards.
The Marlin 357 would be a better choice for shooting heavies.

USSR
June 4, 2012, 07:50 PM
Nah, no worries, McGunner just misunderstood, I think.

Well, you are more confident than I am.;)

Quote:
between the two rifles mentioned

Okay, but I don't consider either a .22 rimfire OR a .30 Carbine appropriate for even small east Texas deer.

MCgunner,

Deer aren't hard to kill. Our deer up North here run quite a bit bigger than Texas whitetails, but I have killed 2 with a .357 Magnum and 1 last year with a .45 Colt. A .30 Carbine 110gr softpoint within say 50 yards will easily anchor a whitetail with a good heart/lung shot.

Don

ECVMatt
June 4, 2012, 09:03 PM
I really love the M1 Carbine, but would pick a .357 over it for hunting. I just shot a nice 150 hog with my Win 94 .357 a few months ago and it worked great. It was a close shot, but dropped instantly. The .357 has such a great selection of ammo and gets even better if you handload. I found a load that works well in my Blackhawk and Winchester so my ammo can be used in either. I am very pleased with it.

Texan Scott
June 4, 2012, 09:08 PM
ballistics? meh.... close enough not to be my first concern. if these are your choices, go for the .357 for availabilty and variety of ammo, as well as interchangability with a good revolver. shoot deer and smallish (or biggish, if you can manage it) pigs, put them in the freezer, laugh at the naysayers over meatloaf the rest of the year.

Nullcone
June 4, 2012, 10:16 PM
I used to think that unless it bruised your shoulder or made your hands bleed, it wasn't powerful enough. Now, not so much.

Miscellaneous Ramblings:

backup rifle to hunt deer

How often has your main gun gone down? Ever?

Bullet quality/selection/performance will be better in .357 (yeah I know about the Barnes .30s). Ballistic performance likewise.

I wouldn't feel outclassed armed with an appropriately loaded .30 carbine against a small to medium sized deer at 75 yards.

They're still making .357 levers; they aren't making new .30 carbines.

Buy what you like, pick your shots accordingly.

FMJMIKE
June 4, 2012, 10:24 PM
I would chose the .357 mag. The Ruger 77/357 though !!!
http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e350/mbmphoto/77357A.jpg

snakeman
June 4, 2012, 10:32 PM
I would go for a rossi 357. Wait I'll be getting one in a couple months!

MCgunner
June 4, 2012, 10:38 PM
Deer aren't hard to kill. Our deer up North here run quite a bit bigger than Texas whitetails, but I have killed 2 with a .357 Magnum and 1 last year with a .45 Colt. A .30 Carbine 110gr softpoint within say 50 yards will easily anchor a whitetail with a good heart/lung shot.

Well, I guess my minimum is higher than yours. That, and for what you'd pay for a beat up old M1 Carbine, you could have a new .357 Carbine and money left over for ammo. But, to each his own. .30 Carbine is not illegal for hunting deer or hogs in Texas, might be in other states. I could say that about .357, too, probably, but in the case of the .357 it is unwarranted as it really is a whole nuther cartridge in a rifle. Far weaker have been used, like .38-40 or, well, .30 carbine. :D

I mean, my wife's uncle shoots hogs all the time with a .22, all he's got and they tear up his yard/garden. He really don't care how long it takes 'em to die, though, kinda like poisoning rats.

snakeman
June 4, 2012, 10:42 PM
^^^^^What he said.

303tom
June 5, 2012, 12:15 AM
I am weighting for Ruger to come out with the 77/327..............

greyling22
June 5, 2012, 01:27 AM
here you go tom https://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/product_info.php/products_id/76429

jehicks87
June 5, 2012, 07:24 AM
Why not just get an SKS? Serious question? Powerful Cartridge, as accurate as either of the two you've thrown out, cheaper weapon AND cheaper ammo.

?

sansone
June 5, 2012, 08:37 AM
if you're only concern is dispatching deer go with the 357 but the M1 is much more interesting & fun to shoot IMHO

hardluk1
June 5, 2012, 08:51 AM
The difference between 30 carbine and 357 mag should be easy to see as a deer hunter. Rifles are way cheaper to buy in 357 mag. The 30 would cost atleast 50% more. You have a much wider range of ammo for the 357 mag and that can make for a better combo. The 30 would make for a better plinker but it would be hard to walk into most gun shops and even find ammo today and then you are very limited with choice. Plus a 357 rifle would easy to add optics to if you want that option. Will the 30 kill deer ?? Sure but why buy a cartidge that cost more to get into and is all around more limited in its ability to harvest game as well is a 357mag cartidge.

An sks would do well too.

303tom
June 5, 2012, 09:44 AM
You under estimate the .357 by a few hundred ft lbs. But, at 100 yards, my load is making about 700 ft lbs as calculated by a ballistics program using a conservatively estimated BC for the bullet, still kills quite dead at that range. Think about that, my hottest load in my Ruger 6.5" blackhawk makes 785 ft lbs muzzle energy and I've killed hogs quite dead at 60 yards with it. The rifle is making nearly as much energy at 100 yards as the handgun at the muzzle. It's got a big, flat 165 grain lead bullet that fully penetrates and cuts a nice round hole while giving about 3" diameter of visual tissue damage. That's based on the one I shot at 80 yards. The wound channel impressed me. It was a lung shot, heart was not touched.

An advantage of the .357 is the fact that you can use those heavy, flat pointed Keith style SWCs or if you just HAVE to have a hollowpoint, load a 180 XTP in front of an appropriate amount of Li'l Gun, haven't worked that load up as I like my cast bullets in the caliber.

I would NOT use a 125 grain JHP on deer. I'd worry about enough penetration. I don't even use 125s for self defense in revolvers, hard on the gun and generally not as accurate as a Speer 140 JHP, or at least I've yet to find the 125 grain bullet that can match a Speer 140JHP's accuracy. If 125 grain stuff stopped production, wouldn't break my heart. :D

For hunting, the M1 Carbine round simply is NOT appropriate for deer sized game.

http://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=100

5. 18.5 inch Marlin 1894

a. Item 19A/20-180gr. Hard Cast = 1851 fps
b. Item 19B/20-170gr. JHC = 1860 fps
c. Item 19C/20-158gr. Jacketed Hollow Point = 2153 fps---- Can you believe this?!!!
d. Item 19D/20-125gr. Jacketed Hollow Point = 2298 fps---- Or this?!!!

Note, energy of load C 158 grain JHP is 1626 ft lbs. My handload using a 165 grain bullet at 1850 is 1253 ft lbs.
All I can say is I am a hand loader to & check my Location..............

USSR
June 5, 2012, 12:25 PM
It's all about the bullet, whether you are talking about the .357 Magnum or the .30 Carbine. When I first started hunting with the .357, I used winchester's 145gr SilverTips. While they will work on a classic behind the shoulder through the ribs shot, they fail miserably at most any other type of shot. I later went with Hornady 158gr XTP bullets (a much more sturdily built bullet) before finally settling on a cast 265gr HP bullet in my .45 Colt. As I said previously, neither the .357 Magnum nor the .30 Carbine are going to kill anything that the other won't as well.

Don

mgkdrgn
June 5, 2012, 01:19 PM
M1 carbine is going to be a bit "light" for deer ... they are tough critters.

A hot 357 load with a good expanding bullet out of a rifle should be a superior choice ... but I wouldn't want to be using it at much over 100 yards.

44 Mag or 454 Casull/45Colt ... now that is a whole nuther story!

USSR
June 5, 2012, 02:45 PM
deer ... they are tough critters.

Not really. I've killed dozens of them with everything from .22 to .70 caliber. With a heart/lung shot, they expire within 75 yards. Head or spine shots anchor them right where they are.

Don

BBQLS1
June 5, 2012, 02:45 PM
If we consider all things equal, they'll work about the same.... but .357 Mag has a wider bullet selection.... much wider. I'll also bet that the lever gun will be a little more accurate than a clapped out M1 Carbine, maybe better than one of the new ones too.

788Ham
June 5, 2012, 02:51 PM
Get the ,357 rifle ! The M1 carbines were kept mostly in the rear with the gear, just wooden noise makers. JMHO If they were good for anything, every GI would have been issued one.

JFrame
June 5, 2012, 03:19 PM
I would opt for the .357 carbine also -- but this dissing on the .30 carbine seems misplaced. I recall reading that for most occasions, Audie Murphy preferred the carbine over all available small arms, and dispatched quite a few Germans with it.

The .30 carbine was also the preferred weapon of Jim Cirillo of the NYPD Stake-out Squad, and -- of the weapons he had available -- he reported more reliable one-shot stops with the carbine than any other small arm (including the 12 gauge, IIRC).


.

Texan Scott
June 5, 2012, 03:31 PM
I'm pretty sure it won't stop the debate altogether, as someone will ALWAYS pop in to shout SKS! (and not without reson: it's not a bad backwoods deer/ hog/ truck gun), BUT...

Am I the only one who'd like to see a semi-auto ruger .357? like a 10/22 on steroids, or the old deerfield .44, but in .357? maybe with flush-fit 5rnd mags, as now, AND 10rnd 'banana' mags, too? THAT, for me, would render the .30 carbine as a deer rifle argument kinda moot.

Edited to add: Somebody has to be the guy to stand up first and start the slow clap.

razorback2003
June 5, 2012, 03:46 PM
M1 Carbine will not be accurate like a 357 lever action carbine. It will also not have the power of a 357 carbine either with good hunting ammo.

mac66
June 5, 2012, 07:21 PM
In my experience a heavier bullet is better than a lighter bullet on deer which is why the 357 is a better choice. On the other hand, if you are going to carry a rifle to hunt deer why carry a rifle in pistol caliber when you can get the same rifle in a rifle caliber? The 357 is better than a .30 carbine but sucks compared to a 30-30 or 35 rem (or any other rifle caliber) in a lever action.

philbo
June 5, 2012, 07:40 PM
I own both, but the 357 would get the nod for hunting simply for the heavier bullets available for it.

Old judge creek
June 5, 2012, 08:52 PM
... I recall reading that for most occasions, Audie Murphy preferred the carbine over all available small arms, and dispatched quite a few Germans with it...


.

Audie Murphy, the most highly decorated US soldier of WWII, preferred it because he was 5'5" tall and weighed 110#. It was just about the only service rifle that really fit him.

Physically, he was very small, but in every other way he was IMP a giant among men.

mljdeckard
June 5, 2012, 09:02 PM
I think the real world difference between the two would be negligible, if noticeable at all. Particularly if both ate using expanding bullets.

I have an M-1 carbine and an SKS I worked over. Some significant differences, the SKS is a lot bigger, longer, heavier, and bulkier. My noob wife has shot both, and the little carbine is a lot easier to handle. But yes, the SKS is the one I throw over the handlebars. If I need to shoot something I'm actually afraid of, i want to give it full-service.

JFrame
June 5, 2012, 10:05 PM
Audie Murphy, the most highly decorated US soldier of WWII, preferred it because he was 5'5" tall and weighed 110#. It was just about the only service rifle that really fit him.

Physically, he was very small, but in every other way he was IMP a giant among men.

Perhaps -- but something tells me Murphy was pretty battle-smart, and would have wielded whatever weapon gave him a good chance of survival. In different engagements, he used the Garand, the Thompson, and in one shoot-out, even blazed away with a captured MG-42, charging German positions with the machine gun.

Something tells me Murphy wouldn't have opted to carry the carbine ONLY because it was light.

Edited to add: It's funny -- Army chow and just growing older must have agreed with Murphy, because another physical taken of him in 1944 lists him at 5'7 1/2" and 138 pounds... :)


.

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