Help with my first big bore revolver.


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Kachok
March 27, 2013, 01:06 AM
Now that I have a fantastic collection of hunting rifles I am itching to get my first big bore revolver. I am not new to revolvers I have shot my share of 38s and 357s over the years but I am looking to get something in the .40cal+ magnum range for hunting and hog protection in the field. While I am open to several options the two that have my attention the most are the 44 magnum and 454 Casull, I am no recoil wimp but decided to exclude the 460 and 500 S&W due to their excessive weight, I don't want a pistol that weighs almost as much as my T3 rifle because that just does not make any sense to me.
While I know alot about rifle cartrages I must confess I know very little about high powered handguns hence the reason for my post.
I have been handloading for years so availability and price of factory ammo is not even a slight concern for me since I will likely never use it, and I just so happen to have 44 Magnum dies since I reload them for a very good friend of mine, so that is a consideration in all of this.
I would like some feedback from some more experienced revolver shooters on my choice of caliber and pistol.

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ArchAngelCD
March 27, 2013, 01:15 AM
As a backup and Hog protection you want something that can be carried all day and won't be left behind.

I would suggest several different revolvers, one would be a 4" .44 Magnum. another would be a S&W M625 Mountain gun in .45 Colt. The .45 Colt can be loaded fairly hot and a 250gr bullet is nothing to sneeze at. S&W has a nice M429 in .44 Magnum with a 2.625" barrel which would be easy to carry although I like a 4" better but it is an option.

In a slightly different direction, how about a Ruger Alaskan? It's available in 44 Magnum, 480 Ruger and 454 Casull which will also fire .45 Colt ammo. It's a handful but it will protect you up close and personal with a hog...

There are a lot of choices out there and most are a good choice.

Kachok
March 27, 2013, 01:53 AM
I certainly would not want anything less then a 4" barrel with a magnum cartridge in fact I think I would prefer a 6" given the option, I am aware that a 454 can fire 45 Long Colt much like a 357 can fire 38 Special, and I am also well aware that the 45 Long Colt can push darn near 44 mag power in a modern action and yes 250gr slugs are nothing to sneeze at with that kind of juice behind them. I have not given any thought to the 480 Ruger since I have never known anyone who shoots them nor have I ever seen one in real life. I kind of like the idea of a 454 since I know full well that my recoil tolerance will be my limiting factor not the limitations of the cartridge, and I can get it in a manageable sub 50oz platform. I started out looking for a Ruger but have not seen a big bore Ruger since the panic started so I have been looking at other brands as well.

CraigC
March 27, 2013, 02:41 AM
I hope you don't get offended like some people do when you respond to a question with a book suggestion. Fact is, when you're just starting out, few can educate you better than the masters. Go through my reading list. Those I would strongly suggest are John Taffin's "Big Bore Sixguns" and "Big Bore Handguns" and Elmer Keith's "Sixguns". You might want to start with Max Prasac's new book, "Big Bore Revolvers" because it's cheap and readily available.

http://www.amazon.com/The-sixgunner-s-required-reading/lm/RM9Z74Y8KBG4D/ref=cm_lm_byauthor_title_full

Eb1
March 27, 2013, 03:06 AM
I own a .44 Magnum SBH with a 5.5" barrel. I carry it in the woods. I also shoot it a ton. And I mean a ton.

I removed the wooden grips, and put on a set of Hogue Mono-grips. It made the revolver much easier to handle. Especially in the beginning when I had little experience with a magnum revolver. I have never shot a factory loaded .44 Magnum cartridge, but I have loaded many to full power loads. I have settled on using a loads that use a 240 grain LSWC or 240 grain XTP moving on average 1300 feet per second and some change.
I will also load some slammers with a .34 cal meplate moving the same velocity for some variety.

The SBH is a very good revolver to shoot and is very accurate, but after some thought a double action revolver seems to always make more sense in a SD situation, be it a four legged animal or a two legged animal. So, there is always that to add to the pro and con list. Which in case a SRH in .44 Magnum would make a good choice. As a matter of fact my next big bore will be a 4 5/8" .44 Mag SA or a 4" S&W DA. I don't know at the moment because the SA revolver is always so much fun to shoot, and having that SA in a leather holster setup in the woods is just a good feeling. It is fun to be a cowboy or a pioneer man for a day or week. Even at 37 years old the imagination still works. Not that I am as old as some of these old farts around here. HA!

I honestly do not think I would care to shoot a 454 Casull enough to become proficient with the gun. I know I wouldn't want a heavy 460 or a 500 S&W for that matter. The recoil, blast and weight doesn't make sense to me for a woods gun. If it were for a hunt on large game where I had sticks, guide or buddy with a shotgun or rifle for backup. Well that is another ball game.

I would recommend that a .44 Magnum with a good bullet at velocities of 1200 fps with a 240 grain bullet, be it lead or jacketed would be a good choice. A 270 - 300 grain at 1050 to 1200 fps would be a good choice. I think that you would be better suited for an all day carry, a fast sprint to target aqusition, and for a follow up shot. Also components are cheaper. Like any large caliber revolver from a reputable maker; you can load them from mild to WILD.

I have shot my .44 Magnum so much with the loads I mentioned that I do not flinch. I do not get any type of anxiety on the first shot. To me it is my go to revolver, and is like shooting a .22 Magnum revolver now. I like it so much, and I am so use to the recoil that I am thinking of putting the wooden grips back on the revolver, or buying a set of ivory grips for the stainless revolver.

My suggestion is to shoot the guns. Find a person that has a 454, 44 Magnum and a 45 Colt. Shot them all, and see what you think you could shoot 50 to 100 rounds in a session, and enjoy the last shot as good as the first shot.
Then make the choice.

CraigC is a revolver guy. He gave some good advice, and shooting the guns for yourself couldn't hurt. Well that it could. Bwhaaaa! BWhaaaaaaa! BWHAAAAAAA!

Kachok
March 27, 2013, 04:18 AM
I hope you don't get offended like some people do when you respond to a question with a book suggestion. Fact is, when you're just starting out, few can educate you better than the masters. Go through my reading list. Those I would strongly suggest are John Taffin's "Big Bore Sixguns" and "Big Bore Handguns" and Elmer Keith's "Sixguns". You might want to start with Max Prasac's new book, "Big Bore Revolvers" because it's cheap and readily available.

http://www.amazon.com/The-sixgunner-s-required-reading/lm/RM9Z74Y8KBG4D/ref=cm_lm_byauthor_title_full
No Craig, I am pretty thick skinned you would have to try really hard to offend me. Worked corrections in two maximum security prisons and served in the Army thick skin comes with the territory :D I am somewhat familiar with the writings of Elmer Keith (the father of the 44 magnum) but to be honest I don't know squat about Taffin or Prasac. Only problem I have with referencing books about firearms is that they often recommend models that have changed or are out of production completely. I know the difference in ballistics between the big bores as I said I do handload quite a but, 11 calibers and counting.

StrawHat
March 27, 2013, 07:16 AM
If you already have dies for the 44 Magnum, that would be a good revolver to purchase. I have had several and all were accurate and relatively easy to carry in a proper holster. The only one that was uncomfortable to tote was the Ruger with the 7 1/2" barrel. The 4" and 6" S&Ws carried nicely.

If you want big bore power with less recoil, a 4" N frame in 45 ACP or 45 long Colt make good hunting companions. A little less weight than the 44 but still enough ballistics to anchor game.

bigwheel
March 27, 2013, 07:42 AM
Yeppers since you already have the .44 mag dies and are into reloading that would be a logical choice of calibers. I would go with a Model 29 Smith if money is not an issue. On a budget the Ruger Single Actions are super strong and accurate. You can also load .44 Specials to make some milder target loads.

highpower
March 27, 2013, 10:06 AM
Years ago I purchased a Ruger SBH due to all the great reviews on them. Shot a box of 240gr hollowpoints through it and then sold it. While I like the single action platform, I just don't like the way a SBH feels when I touch one off.

I used the money from the Ruger to buy a Model 29 and have never looked back. While it is true that the Ruger is capable of shooting hotter loads, I have never had any trouble dropping game with my trusty 29. If you already have the dies it makes much more sense to go with a .44 mag.

460Kodiak
March 27, 2013, 10:29 AM
I love my 460 with a 5" bbl, but you said you don't want that so, may I suggest:

S&W 629 Mountain Gun

It has a tappered 4" bbl so it is nicely balanced and quick to put on target.

The Alaskan is a cool gun, but I want more velocity and accuracy out of a magnum than a short little bbl is going to provide. No offense to those guns, I'd love to own one, but they just aren't useful to me.

A nice 41 magnum would be nice too, but since you have the 44 dies, the 44 is probably a better way to go.

The Ruger Redhawk is a nice gun to and very stoutly built, but they are too blocky looking for my taste.

eldon519
March 27, 2013, 10:40 AM
I'd recommend trying something out with a Bisley grip. It is what most of the big-bore custom smiths recommend as a platform for 5-shot conversions. I've shot the .44 magnum/.45 Colt Ruger-level in several different platforms including the regular Redhawk, Super Redhawk, Super Blackhawk, and Freedom Arms 97. To me, the Bisley grip is comfortable enough that it allows me to comfortably shoot a couple boxes of full-power loads vs maybe 25-50 full power rounds with the other platforms before it quits being fun for one reason or another. Since you handload, you can always download if you want, but I like being able to practice with the hot stuff.

Currently Ruger has a couple distributor exclusives with Bisley grips like a 5.5" .45 Colt and a 3.75" .44 magnum if you want something packable.

murf
March 27, 2013, 12:54 PM
mornin, kachok.

i suggest you start your quest for the ppp (perfect packin pistol). john taffin started the quest. you can google either subject, or search for them here on the thr.

even if the ppp is not your "cup of tea", there is a lot of good info regarding your post.

murf

p.s. my ppp is a ruger blackhawk, 4.625" barrel, chambered in 45 long colt.

huntershooter
March 27, 2013, 01:03 PM
For your perceived purpose, it would be hard to beat a S&W "Mountain Gun" in .45 Colt, .44 or .41 mag-assuming you handload.
A big fan of 4" "N" frames, they are about as light and packable as I want in the calibers mentioned.

Here's a sample of my hunting/"ranch" revolvers:

http://i1043.photobucket.com/albums/b434/huntershooter/MGs/Mountain%20Guns/HogGunsMG004.jpg

tomrkba
March 27, 2013, 01:34 PM
The Alaskan is a cool gun, but I want more velocity and accuracy out of a magnum than a short little bbl is going to provide. No offense to those guns, I'd love to own one, but they just aren't useful to me.

I wish they'd make one in 3.5" and 5" with the shroud enclosing the barrel.

BCRider
March 27, 2013, 02:09 PM
Of the two options, namely .454Casull and .44Mag, the .454 has the stronger performance potential. And it's not that hard to learn to tolerate a cylinder at a time of full power Casull in a gun with the mass of the Super Redhawk.

I'm a bit of a recoil "wimp". But even I not only tolerate but enjoy a couple of cylinders worth of full house Casull like my shooting buddy loads for his own SR. But my tolerance for it fades rapidly after that second cylinder where he just keeps on grinning and reloading.

But a Super Redhawk with a hunting length barrel isn't something I'd want to pack around on my hip all day if primarily rifle hunting. So this brings up the idea of a two gun package. One being a Super Redhawk in .454Casull set up for hunting and the other being a Ruger or S&W in .45Colt. I guess the question then is if the .45Colt is enough gun for the hog defense role.

In a way the "safe" answer would be the .44Mag. It'll certainly provide any reasonable bullet weight and velocity to get the job done for both hogs and hunting. I'd still suggest that it would be best done with a two gun "system". A 4 inch DA revolver for carrying during a rifle day and a longer barrel SA or DA hunting gun for handgun only days. The only good thing is that now you can share ammo back and forth without any concern over having brought the wrong box.

If it were me I'd go with a 4 inch S&W option for the carrying around. The S&W is a touch lighter and more streamlined a gun than the Ruger. So it should make the holstered package that much more streamlined on your hip or under your arm depending on the holster style. On the other hand a Ruger Super Redhawk or Super Blackhawk Hunter model comes with a nice barrel set up for mounting some sort of optic if that is what you'd like. If an optic aid of some sort isn't needed then it opens up the door to a few more longer barreled options.

There is a "one gun" package that might be worth checking into. An older Dan Wesson in .44Mag with the multi barrel pack. A few minutes with the wrench supplied and you can convert from one barrel length to the other. And by all accounts and the one time I got to personally shoot a DW revolver they sure seem like nice guns.

buck460XVR
March 27, 2013, 03:02 PM
With the options given, you can't go wrong with a .44 mag. Much more pleasant to shoot than a full blown .454 and for most practical purposes just as effective. You already have dies and experience loading for it and the variety of firearms and reloading components available for the caliber are second to none. Primary hunting(this means leaving the rifle at home) and range gun I would look for something with a 5'' barrel or more and maybe a P.C. model or other that at some-point is capable of easily adding a scope. If it's just gonna be a back-up or secondary while carrying a long-gun or for the one in a million chance for protection from a rogue boar, then the 4 inchers and shorter would be my choice.

CraigC
March 27, 2013, 03:07 PM
Here's a sample of my hunting/"ranch" revolvers:
Beautiful set! :D


The Super Redhawks look really heavy but they're not too bad. They're only slightly heavier than a standard 7" Bisley and equal to a Bisley Hunter. Either one will carry nicely with a proper belt and holster. Although neither is my choice for a packin' pistol.

Two of my favorites are a 4 5/8" Super converted to a Bisley:
http://photos.imageevent.com/newfrontier45/blackriver905/large/P1010059.JPG


And a 4" 629MG that needs some Herrett's like above:
http://photos.imageevent.com/newfrontier45/sixgunsiii/large/IMG_8763b.jpg

Kachok
March 27, 2013, 03:47 PM
If it's just gonna be a back-up or secondary while carrying a long-gun or for the one in a million chance for protection from a rogue boar, then the 4 inchers and shorter would be my choice.
Hate to say it but there is nothing "one in a million" about it, most hunters I know around here have been charged and my poor brother has been treed twice in the past five years, you cannot get him out of the truck without a side arm now.
Already having dies and components for the 44 is a big plus but I have always loved a 45 LC and having the extra option of 454 power is very appealing, not that the 45 LC is any kind of slouch with modern powders.

Eb1
March 27, 2013, 03:54 PM
A little off topic, but I have used an XD 9mm Service pistol with 17 rounds of 125 grain hard cast lead to take down a hog before I got my .44 Magnum. Didn't take all 17, but I was able to get sever in it before it got to me.
There were several that went in and out, and some that didn't, and the damage was extensive.

Old judge creek
March 27, 2013, 03:59 PM
Good thread, here. With an excellent question and several excellent responses.

I'm 70 years old. I've spent my life running around every wild place I could get in to... and I've almost always had a sixgun on my hip.

The original post is from an obviously seasoned outdoorsman ( and highly intelligent too - because he thinks like I do :D )

Let me say right now that I have several sixguns that serve, and have served, me well for MANY years: my two favorites are the S&W 629 Trail Boss and the Ruger Bisley Vaquero - in 44 magnum. Those are my favorites because they carry well for me - I can wear them comfortably all day. I reload my own ammo - and I do NOT load anything hotter than what's in the books.

Having said that, on my last trip to Alaska, rather than antagonize Missus Big O. Grizzly bear who had decided to take her two young cubs out for some fresh air right where I was fixin' to fish... I did the gentlemanly thing and got the hell outta Dodge, BEFORE we needed to exchange "morning pleasantries". Fortunately the bush pilot had warned me to keep a weather eye, because other folks had seen Miz Bear in the area.

Next time I go there, I'll have a 45-70 Guide Gun with me.

IMO the Ruger Red Hawk is to heavy too wear all day... as are many 454's. BUT, if I feel the need for loads up in the lower 454 range, I also have A Ruger Blackhawk and a Ruger Bisley Vaquero in 45 Colt. Both wear a 4" barrel.

Typically, I prefer the shorter barrel lengths for general carry. In the past 15 years or so, I can recall only once when I belted on a long toob S&W 29. I've got 'em but years of packing 'em have lead me to personally prefer the shorter barrels.

I played a bit with S&W 45 Colt Mountain Gun and quite frankly I wasn't comfortable betting my life on it. It had a tendency to "shoot loose" under stout loads. Screws loosened and a couple of roll pins backed out a smidge - not enough to disable the piece but enough for me to lack complete confidence in it. Let me say right now that I think this was a unique situation.

Had the 454's (revolvers AND carbines) been more available when I was in the hunt for a serious big bore, I may well have gone in that direction. Ruger's big framed, stubby tubed Alaskan could well have been something I couldn't live without. As it is, I am completely confident that my 44 mags / 45 Colts with goosed up "Ruger Only" loads will suffice for my purposes.

Last of all, on any trip into the bush (or desert) I always ask myself "What's the biggest job I expect my sidearm to perform?"

With big, nasty tempered critters like bear and boar... or a bull (and I'd sure as heck would hate having to knock on the door and confess to the Gent who'd given me permission to be on his land, that I needed to pay for a bull that I had to shoot in self defense - but there have been a few times when I came darn close to the need to do just that :what:) . I want a deep penetrating, hard cast lead bullet of at least 41 caliber, the bigger the hole, the better IMO, with as much power as I can control - because I want to be able to fire controlled follow up shots.

Eb1
March 27, 2013, 04:09 PM
I knew CraigC couldn't resist pulling out the 4 5/8" ivory handled beaut. :)

I am getting one. No more waiting.

shinyroks
March 27, 2013, 04:36 PM
I actually quite like the way the 480 Ruger shoots out of my Raging Bull. It actually is relatively pleasant for the amount of power the load produces. With the ported barrel on the Taurus, the loads actually feel like you are shooting heavy 357 mags, not .454+ power loads. I have shot the .454 out of the same model gun, and I do appreciate shooting the 480 much more. I can get of between 25-30 full-house rounds before I have to stop even...

That being said, the advantage to the 44 and the 454 is that they have smaller cousins (44 spec/Russian, 45 colt/schofield) which can be shot in the same platform. 480 is the smaller cousin.

Eb1
March 27, 2013, 04:48 PM
Those who load don't load specials much, and people generally hand load when they own a gun like the .44 magnum. My experience is that most use magnum brass with lighter charge weights from their big bores. So in turn it is just a mild to wild gun. The smaller cousins do not really come into play. At least not for me. I have a .44 SPC to shoot specials.

Arkansas Paul
March 27, 2013, 04:49 PM
With you being a handloader, the .45 Colt is just awesome. I wouldn't suggest it to a non handloader because factory ammo is not always available and is generally very anemic.
If you get a Ruger Blackhawk or a Bisely, you can push the loads to do anything you want in the lower 48. (Actually the standard 255 grain bullet at 900-1000 fps would probably do it)
Check out this months "Handloader" magazine. There's an article about .45 Colt bear loads that's pretty interesting.
Of course, you couldn't possibly go wrong with a .41 mag or .44 mag either.

BigG
March 27, 2013, 04:55 PM
For your perceived purpose, it would be hard to beat a S&W "Mountain Gun" in .45 Colt, .44 or .41 mag-assuming you handload.
A big fan of 4" "N" frames, they are about as light and packable as I want in the calibers mentioned.

Here's a sample of my hunting/"ranch" revolvers:

http://i1043.photobucket.com/albums/b434/huntershooter/MGs/Mountain%20Guns/HogGunsMG004.jpg
I would recommend some variant of the Model 29 S&W. Here's mine right now. I've had several but they are all good as far as I can tell. http://i70.photobucket.com/albums/i115/BigG_photos/Picture19088.jpg I had it engraved because I liked it so much. Those are Eagle grips, too.

CraigC
March 27, 2013, 05:03 PM
Practically speaking of beltguns and with the intent of covering 100yds from the muzzle, the .454 and anything faster is just unnecessary muzzle blast and recoil. If you have a .41Mag, .44Mag or a large frame .45Colt, 1200-1300fps is all you need and you can drive ANY practical bullet to that speed or near to it. Right up to 355's and 360's. All the added velocity of the .454 and .460 is going to achieve is to flatten trajectory and you just don't need it. Not for an iron sighted sixgun with a mid-length barrel.

BlindJustice
March 27, 2013, 06:22 PM
Since you have the .44 Magnum Dies and already handload for that
cartrdge, seems an easy choice for the cartrdge.

Now, what platform?

SIngle Action - both of which are strong
Ruger Super BlackHawk
or the Freedom Arms

Double Action

Ruger Super Red Hawk - kinda heavy for a belt gun imo
S&W Model 29 - how about the Mountain gun format
with 4" Bbl. and no underlug but the ejector shroud

Seems the M29 MG suited Elmer Keith just fine

Myself, I have a 1911 .45 ACP full size and it's complement
a S&W 625 5" Bbl. - wide variety of loads in .45 ACP and
the full moon clips lends to quick rrloads, and it also shoots
the .45 Auto RIm. Buffalo Bore and others offer heavy bullets
loads in the 1200+ FPS level. and if yah need more the .45
Super will satisfy that 'need'.

I also have a marlin 1894 Lever gun in .45 Colt, I'd like to get
a Ruger Blackhawk in the same chambering with the spare .45
ACP cyllinder. I'd consider getting a .45 ACP cyl. converted
to .45 AR since Ive got a good stock of ammo for it.

Being able to handlle recoil is fine, but it still costs time in a
follow up shot(s).

Randall


.

blueskyjaunte
March 27, 2013, 06:48 PM
Great info here, folks. CraigC, thanks for the reading list. :)

My "playing at outdoorsman EDC" (up in the mountains here in AZ, and out in WY) is a stainless 5.5" Ruger Super Blackhawk in .44 mag. Thankfully I've only needed it for rattlers so far but I'm pretty comfortable with it.

I can't really imagine hauling anything heavier around for a lengthy period of time, unless it was a carbine! I'm 220 lbs. but even the 3 lb. Ruger is noticeable. A larger caliber = heaver gun.

I've been desirous of an old model Vaquero Bisley in .45 or .44, but haven't been able to justify the cost. It's a shame that the new model doesn't share the strength of the original.

Cosmoline
March 27, 2013, 07:04 PM
I'm really liking the Redhawk frame. It handles like an enlarged Security Six, and is better balanced in my hand than the SRH's which tend to be a bit brickish with that extra steel. But personal hand shape has a lot to do with these things, so it's important to get a feel for some variety and try before you buy if possible.

.44 Mag is a fine choice to start. Also don't discount the .45 Colt. The new model Vaqueros are a pleasure to shoot and very light on the hip.

.454 Casull will pound you hard, even in a full size SRH frame. In a smaller single action you'll really get hammered. Some people enjoy that, I find it distracting.

460Kodiak
March 27, 2013, 07:57 PM
I wish they'd make one in 3.5" and 5" with the shroud enclosing the barrel.


Me too. Would be cool as heck hey? The SRH is just sort of well..... hideous. Sorry to any owners, I almost bought one, but when I found the 460V, my reservation about style was relieved.

All the added velocity of the .454 and .460 is going to achieve is to flatten trajectory and you just don't need it. Not for an iron sighted sixgun with a mid-length barrel.

You know I always promote the 460 and 454 because I just plain love to shoot them. But my primary reason for owning a 460 is for griz and moose defense when hiking long distance, and I think I may desire to hunt with it at some point. I knew I wanted a shorter bbl as in 4 or 5" so it was easier to pack, but with the big critters, I wanted something that would hold it's velocity and trajectory a little further out. It is debatable also how well a 5" bbl 460 will do that since the cartridge was designed around a longer bbl. Ultimately, it came down to the fact that I loved the versatility of the 460, since you can shoot all those less powerful, though still well proven cartridges. The reality is that if any of those big critters are charging at you, they are coming fast, and you probably don't need to be able to reach out as far as a 460 or 454 is capable of. I do like the higher velocity as I feel it will help a hard cast bullet penetrate deeper into a thick skinned, and dense boned critter.

That being said, in this case I agree with CraigC 100%. If you are worried about a charging hog (and I assume black bears live in your area), you don't really need the reach, and extra expense of anything more than a 41 mag or a 44 mag. If you get the 44, that is generally considered to be adequate to stop an angry griz. So you're set then. You have the one big bore that you "need" and later you can focus on ones that you want if desired. Throw in the fact that you have dies...... well, it seems logical in this case. Do you see the need to kill anything with a 454 that a 44 mag won't kill? If you just want the 454, I say go for it. Save the dies for the 44 and the excuse to buy one for a later date.

I wish they would come out with a 41 Super Mag in an N Frame. Don't need one. Just like the idea.

Kachok
March 27, 2013, 07:59 PM
While I am no recoil wimp I doubt I would be loading 454 to the max if I ever went that route, probably between 45LC and 454 speeds because as Craig said the muzzle blast would be intense out of a short barrel revolver. I could be wrong but just looking at the load data I would think you would really need an 8" barrel to start to tap the 454 potential whereas the 45 LC feels right at home in the 6" barrel I shot, and would probably be fine even in a 4".
What are your thoughts on the Taurus Tracker, that is the only new 44 Mag I have seen lately, 5rd capacity only 34oz and a ported barrel (which I have never used before)

Kachok
March 27, 2013, 08:36 PM
Drat, all this talk about getting a big bore revolver inspired my copy cat brother to buy one he just called me and told me he bought the Taurus Tracker I was talking about. Oh well look on the bright side I guess I get the chance to try one out for free.
He asked me to load some 44 Special his wife to shoot, I know I can shoot 44 Special in a 44 Mag but can I use the same die set?? I just so happen to have some 44 Special brass laying around here somewhere.

BSA1
March 27, 2013, 08:43 PM
Many years ago when I was into hunting wild hogs with a handgun. After reading the tripe in the gun rags of the day I convinced myself that my 44 Magnums were not up to the job and the 454 was the ultimate hog killer.

One day I went to indoor shooting range to practice. Now mind you at this time period in my life I was a harden shooter with full house 44 Mag. loads. There was another shooter on the range shooting a 454 Freedom Arms. The concussion, recoil, fireball and noise of those rounds going was deafening and awesome. I closely watched the expression on the shooters face when he capped off each round and he was not enjoying himself. The noise and concussion was so bad I left the range until he was done shooting.

I realized at that moment that I was a mere mortal and I would go through the rest of my life with the stigma that the most powerful handgun round I could ever enjoy shooting was the 44 magnum and 45 Colt.

Mat, not doormat
March 27, 2013, 08:47 PM
I'm partial to the Ruger Super Blackhawk, in .44 Mag. My pair wear glassy smooth buffalo horn grips, and 7.5" barrels. Some folks don't much like the longer tubes for packin' pistols, but I find that it doesn't make a lot of difference in a crossdraw holster.

Of course, my partialities and preferences aren't likely to accord perfectly with yours, so you might as well just start tracking down specimens of all the excellent guns mentioned in this thread, rent or borrow them, and give 'em a test drive. Buy the one that calls your name.

JohnM
March 27, 2013, 08:51 PM
Depends what you shoot that 454 out of.
The FA guns are known to be wicked.
I've shot quite a bit of 454 out of my S&W XVR and while a potent round, it isn't all that bad to shoot.
But, that's a heavy gun. With the scope it's about 6 pounds. :)

buck460XVR
March 27, 2013, 09:20 PM
He asked me to load some 44 Special his wife to shoot, I know I can shoot 44 Special in a 44 Mag but can I use the same die set?? I just so happen to have some 44 Special brass laying around here somewhere.


Yes you can, but I prefer to download .44 mag brass to .44 special pressures instead.

Kachok
March 27, 2013, 09:40 PM
Never gone below starting load data before, but what she wants is more then I can squeeze out of 44 Special brass, she asked for 357 Mag level power/recoil I would have to go 2-3gr under my starting load of Blue Dot to do that with my 240gr bullets in 44 mag. I figure 1100fps should be just about right that will make about 650 ft/lbs but 13.7gr is as light as I have loaded before and that is in the 1300fps range in her dads 44 SBH.

Eb1
March 28, 2013, 12:10 AM
Just use the Magnum brass. They who clean the cylinder will be thankful. I don't know what the Tracker weighs, but my SBH is like 3#, and a loading of say 7 grains of Trail Boss and a 240 LSWC has zilch felt recoil. It is harder to hold the gun up long enough to aim it. hahah


I bet 6 grains of TB would be like shooting a very anemic .38 SPC.

Kachok
March 28, 2013, 03:48 AM
She does not want anemic, just not fierce either. She wanted him to get the 357 because she is comfortable with that level of kick, and she likes 8 grainers I load (8gr Longshot pushing a 180gr XTP in a 40 S&W, rather potent) I think if I can get a 240gr XTP around 1100fps she will be thrilled with that, trying 12gr of Blue Dot in the morning.

BCRider
March 28, 2013, 04:30 AM
Kachok, a nice way to go to replicate .357Mag like power is to drop to a 200 gn bullet and use a faster powder such as Tightgroup or even Bullseye to arrive at around 1000 to 1100 fps based on what she likes. The lighter bullet provides most of the reduction in recoil and the selection of powder and size of the charge fine tunes the feel.

I've been playing with lighter plinking loads for my own .44Mag. What I do is look for powders that fit into the loading for both .44Spl and .44Mag. That way I know that they are fine for using in amounts that fit in between the lighter end of the Magnum and the top end of the Special loading recipes.

Kachok
March 28, 2013, 05:17 AM
180-200gr would have been my choice too, but they wanted to go shoot their new gun in the morning and all I have on hand is 240s. I already told them to track down some lighter HPs if they want a lighter kicking self defense load. Not that I think 240s are going to be harsh with that small a powder charge in them.

buckhorn_cortez
March 28, 2013, 07:07 AM
I've owned a .44 magnum since 1972 and have shot about every load level and type you can name. I also own a .460 S&W X-frame that can shoot .460, .454, and .45 Colt.

Full power .454 Casull is worse than .460 for recoil. Part of shooting a pistol is control if a second or third shots are needed. The .454 is hard to control. The recoil is 70% greater than a .44 magnum when comparing full power 300+ grain bullets in either caliber.

I carry a .44 magnum Ruger RH Alaskan for hiking in bear country specifically because the .454 Casull recoil is difficult to manage for repeated shots. If you look at something like the Garrett loads or Buffalo Bore in .44 - if you can't put it down with that - then go directly to .500 S&W and skip the .454.

My recommendation would be the .44 magnum because it is far more controllable than the .454.

Manny
March 28, 2013, 08:28 AM
I've had most all of the common big bores other than the big S&W's over the years, and have come to the conclusion that high pressure and high velocity are over rated and do more to make the gun unpleasant to shoot than they give back in increased performance. Adequate bullet weight and good bullet design at modest 1000 to 1300 fps velocities will give fantastic performance and keep the gun very comfortable to shoot.

As you're a handloader the .45 Colt would seem to be a wonderful choice for you, especially given your tagline about recoil and muzzle blast being over rated. A .454 downloaded to warm .45 colt loads is a super gun as well. My "pet" gun is a .454 SRH Alaskan, shooting Winchesters 250 gr Super X load rated @ 1300 fps, this gun is exceedingly comfortable and fun to shoot, yet still packs a heavy punch on the recieving end. I leave with these words of wisdom on the performance that can be had from a "properly" loaded .45 from the man himself, John Linebaugh:

http://www.customsixguns.com/writings/dissolving_the_myth.htm

osteodoc08
March 28, 2013, 08:47 AM
I'm a huge fan of the 41 mag. That being said, I think you'd be served just fine by a 44 mag. You can load it up to outstanding performance. There is a huge selection of components. If you wanna punch a bigger hole, a ruger in 45 LC loaded to "ruger only" loads will nip at the heels of the 454 Casull. They (44m and 45lc) are much easier to find especially on the used market.

Mat, not doormat
March 28, 2013, 11:05 AM
A lot of people fret about going below start data, but it's not really that big a deal. Cowboy shooters have been loading mousepharts for years.

Your .44 Mag dies should be able to adjust far enough to load .44 Special or even .44 Russian. A lot of what you want to do can be accomplished by using a light bullet and a fast powder. Slow powders like Blue Dot contribute heavier recoil for the same velocity, because the heavier charge weight associated with them translates directly to more mass ejected from the barrel.

Anyhow, the main hazard with light loads in large cases is the sensitivity of the powder to its position in the case. A tiny charge of titegroup or bullseye can do a lot of rattling around in a .44 Mag case. If you find yourself getting inconsistent results, the best bet is a smaller case; failing that, a less position sensitive powder, a bulkier powder, or a magnum primer are all workarounds.

eldon519
March 28, 2013, 11:31 AM
If you want to load Specials in Magnum brass, you can always just seat the bullet deeper in the case to the .44 Special OAL and use Special data. The load will likely be light enough as not to need a crimp, so that won't matter, even if the bullet shoulder/ogive is below the case neck. If you've got the same case volume, for all purposes it basically is a Special.

CraigC
March 28, 2013, 11:32 AM
Your .44 Mag dies should be able to adjust far enough to load .44 Special or even .44 Russian.
.44Spl yes but the .44Russian, probably not. I had to shorten my seat/crimp die just to load .44Colt and it's longer than the Russian.

buck460XVR
March 28, 2013, 01:18 PM
I figure 1100fps should be just about right that will make about 650 ft/lbs.


That's pretty close to the range I gave with the Hornady recipe in your thread in the reloading forum.

BCRider
March 28, 2013, 01:42 PM
Anyhow, the main hazard with light loads in large cases is the sensitivity of the powder to its position in the case. A tiny charge of titegroup or bullseye can do a lot of rattling around in a .44 Mag case.

That seems to be the great thing about Bullseye and Tightgroup and a few other similar powders. They have a proven track record for being very insensitive to how the powder is distributed within the casing.

Case in point is the classic 148gn HBWC in a .38Spl casing. The 2.8 to 3.0 gns of Bullseye looks like nothing down in the bottom of that case. Yet this is a highly respected load for serious bullseye match shooting.

For myself I found that the Bullseye tends to be temperature sensitive which played havoc with my 9mm. So I've shifted over to Tightgroup based on the success of folks around my area. And like Bullseye it doesn't seem to care how little or where it sits in the casing.

Snubshooter
March 28, 2013, 02:07 PM
Just as a side note. if you get a 460 S&W you can also fire 454,45 colt and 45 Scholfield. So you have the whole spectrum of power at your disposal.
That said I now carry a 3" RedHawk in .44 mag.

blueskyjaunte
March 28, 2013, 03:27 PM
That is the great benefit of .460 S&W. The downside is that you have to lug around an enormous X-frame.

buck460XVR
March 28, 2013, 03:52 PM
That is the great benefit of .460 S&W. The downside is that you have to lug around an enormous X-frame.

IMHO, That's only a downside if you are looking for a secondary or backup. You'll see earlier in this thread that I did not recommend the .460, nor even the .454. I recommended the .44 mag as that is all most folks need or want. While the .454 is quite tame outta a X-Frame, it is brutal outta many other platforms. If one wants a .460 platform, then shooting .454 outta it is a viable option. That said, my 10 1/2'' P.C. Compensated Hunter weighs no more than the handgun caliber carbines I hunt with, has more energy, easier to maneuver and more accurate, and carries in my hands or with the sling just as easily. This even in applications of stalking and or still hunting. So I don't consider it as "lugging" around when being used as a primary hunting firearm. If I am carrying a carbine, I don't even consider it as a backup or secondary firearm....that's what the shorter piped .44s and .357s are for. I also have a P.C. 7 1/2'' .44 Magnum Hunter that is a primary hunting weapon carried in a bandolier holster, but not considered when wanting a back-up or secondary firearm. It, like the X-Frame is not a do-all firearm, but very good at what it does. They are not for everybody, or every application, but not many firearms are.We are fortunate that at this time in history, if we can find one for sale, there are a multitude of options out there for handguns. Many are do-alls and many are job specific. Some are for the masses and some are for the few. One should define the priorities and the parameters of usage before deciding on any.

TwoEyedJack
March 29, 2013, 01:06 AM
I started out with a SBH in .44 mag, back when you could only get a 7.5" barrel. It was a nice shooter, but the square trigger guard was hard on the knuckles of the left hand. I hated how it rode in a holster. So I sold it and bought a BH in .41 mag that had a 6.5" barrel. One inch does not sound like a big difference, but it is. My particular .41 has a factory fitted steel grip frame. This makes it very comfortable to shoot even full power (1,000 ft. lb.) loads. If I could have gotten a .44 with the round trigger guard and a 6.5" barrel, I probably would have stayed with the .44. But the .41 really does grow on you. I now have a companion rifle in .41, a Marlin 1894FG. In terms of performance, there is really very little difference between the .44 (.429) and the .41 (.411).

http://imageshack.us/a/img24/532/sany0831r.jpg

http://imageshack.us/a/img7/6149/sany0805u.jpg

35 Whelen
March 29, 2013, 05:10 AM
A good, stout .44 Special can be handloaded to the levels of standard factory .44 Magnum ammunition. Armed with that information, get your hands on a new production 5 1/2" Ruger Flat Top or one of the Ruger Bisley's in .44 Special. Hold it. Touch it. Daydream... From that point on, you'll either understand forever, or you never will.

35W

Eb1
March 29, 2013, 06:15 AM
I had the battle of choosing a Lipsey blued .44 SPC and the stainless .44 MAG when I bought my SA Big Bore. I went with the Magnum. Both were 5.5 inches.
The special had cylinder clicks that stopped the hole in the gate. The magnum does not.
The Lipsey looked better. I kick myself sometimes for passing on it, but I bought the magnum for my only son the day he was born, and I figured the Magnum would be a nice keep sake for the boy.
Plus I like to push it past 1200 fps evey now and then. I will probably get the Lipsey one day. I know I will.

CraigC
March 29, 2013, 11:30 AM
Here are two of the Taffin books you need.

http://www.rugerforum.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=41&t=172473

22-rimfire
March 29, 2013, 11:45 AM
Making my way through the posts, but I do recommend buying Max Prasac book "Big-Bore Revolvers". He obviously has his preferences and pretty much deals only in currently available guns. His book speaks common sense and the realities of shooting big bore calibers.

I think buying a big bore for protection and hunting entails two separate revolvers. Double action revolvers have a lot of appeal for protection and double versus single action makes no practical difference hunting.

Look at the 475 Linebaugh/480 Ruger closely. For protection, I would choose the Ruger Alaskan in 480 Ruger with loads around 1000 fps and a hard cast bullet. I just hope Ruger starts making them soon. Nobody has seen a newly made one. For hunting, I would choose a 6.5" BFR in 475/480. If you prefer a shorter barrel, Magnum Research can build you one with a shorter barrel. I have a Ruger SRH in 480, but I like the BFR better if not going with a custom.

When Ruger came up with the 480 Ruger... it didn't catch on primarily due to the same gun (SRH) in 454C and the introduction of the 460 and 500 S&W in the X-frame guns. But the 480 Ruger can really do it all. It's sad that hunters have not taken to that caliber. The 475L= +1.

The 454C has little appeal to me. But it truly IS the caliber that brought big bore shooting to the common man. I just think there are better choices available now. If these big ones don't appeal to you, then I would go for a 44 mag (although I prefer 41 mags). I saw a 3" 629 the other day and that would be a good choice for defensive purposes.

CraigC
March 29, 2013, 12:44 PM
For protection, I would choose the Ruger Alaskan in 480 Ruger with loads around 1000 fps and a hard cast bullet.
Agreed on the .480, it is truly a shame that it hasn't caught on. It really is a better and more practical cartridge than either X-frame chambering. For the Alaskan, there is very little a 425gr@1000fps won't handle.

Kachok
March 29, 2013, 12:50 PM
I like the idea of the 480 Ruger, but I have never known a person in RL that owns one, nor have I ever seen one in person. I know the ins and out of the 44 vs 45 cal handguns to some extent but I will give the 480 a closer look, being a handloader I am not scared of an oddball caliber if it performs it's intended task perfectly (hence the 6.5x55)

35 Whelen
March 29, 2013, 01:21 PM
I'm fairly new to big bore revolvers, so bear with me. In the OP, he states he wants a handgun for hunting and hog protection. I think it's safe to say that having to protect oneself from a wiild hog attack is akin to winning a Power Ball Lotto. I say this having tromped through the hunting fields following bird dogs. calling turkeys and hunting deer for nearly 40 years in Texas where it's a safe assumption that every river and creek bottom in the state is gonna have hogs in it. Every hog I've ever seen, including some pretty big boars and sows with babies, ran like greyhounds at first hint of human beings.

That being said, are the gigantic revolvers hurling close to 1 oz. chunks of lead really necessary for hunting deer and for protection from a hog attack that likely will never happen? When I was heavy into quail hunting, I often carried an S&W 25-5 stoked with 250 gr. SWC's @ 1000 fps. Never occurred to me that I didn't have enough gun.

I certainly don't begrudge anyone for wanting to carry such a handgun....

22-rimfire
March 29, 2013, 01:49 PM
I agree with you 35 Whelen. The 45 Colt is enough gun for hawgs. When I made my 480/475 suggestion, I was thinking that maybe protection would include something larger than a hawg. You can get something like 4 or 5 feet of penetration with hardcasts from either a 480 or 475. It is a serious bone crusher.

I would personally carry a 4" 41 mag because I shoot them fairly well for hawg "protection", but would see little reason to carry it in addition to my 6.5" BFR 475/480 if I were hunting with ranges within 125 yds. Yeah, the longer barrel would make the revolver a little slower at close ranges. Beyond that, I think you are better off with a 454C or 460 S&W.

CraigC
March 29, 2013, 02:36 PM
A properly loaded .44Spl also makes a wonderful woods packin' pistol. A 250gr at 950fps (Skeeter load) is all one usually needs.

35 Whelen
March 29, 2013, 05:55 PM
A properly loaded .44Spl also makes a wonderful woods packin' pistol. A 250gr at 950fps (Skeeter load) is all one usually needs.
Agreed. My Flat Top slides in the same holster as my Colt clone. Reasonably light and oh so handy with more than enough power.

Catpop
March 30, 2013, 03:25 PM
Not trying to change the line of thought, but curious, is a.38 spc enough for wild hawgs. I used to cruise timber everyday in the 1970 to 1990 era. I carried a .38 M60 S & W everyday, mainly for snakes and wild dogs. I've done many hog killings, but all we ever used was a .22. Do I need to up grade to a bigger piece?

Eb1
March 31, 2013, 02:39 AM
I have killed hogs with a .22 LR with shots behind the ear, but I wouldn't feel comfortable with a.38 SPC revolver. Maybe at 10 yards I would.
I wouldn't go out specifically with a .38 SPC revolver to hunt hogs.

The .22 LR in a rifle is a little different story. It is more accurate with it being scoped, and I know I could hit behind the ear with it.

I would how ever feel much better with a .44 Magnum or larger for hogs. A lot of difference with a .44 Magnum and a .38 SPC.
Although if you feel like you can hit a 3" circle every time with a .38 at 40 yards. Then it might work out.
I wouldn't shoot at the should with a .38 SPC. I'd take a bow over a .38 SPC.

wlewisiii
March 31, 2013, 03:37 AM
Given my understanding of the OP, he should have a double action in either .44 Magnum or .45 Colt. I personally prefer the Colt but there is no real world difference if you hand load. Beyond those you get into silly stuff like X-Frames that are best ignored as the fantasies of bean counters counting on foolish buyers.

This is a backup weapon so it needs to be easily handled - a 4" barrel would be best, it seems to me.

Beyond that I doubt there is anything other than personal preference. Find a gun that fits your hand and learn how to draw it fast and aim it accurately. I have a 625-9 Mountain Gun (that's .45 Colt) with Ahrends grips on it. In a bad situation, I'd take it over anything else I've ever owned and would recommend one in either .44 or .45 to anyone in need of such a weapon.

Catpop
March 31, 2013, 07:49 PM
Thanks for quick response Eb1. Looks like I may need start toting my sp101 in lew of the m60 . But the m60 is so light and compact. Drats!

336A
March 31, 2013, 08:18 PM
I think that a properly loaded .38 SPL would be ok as long as it was used within it's capabilities. On another forum a member told his story of taking a doe in deer season beneath his tree stand. His S&W Model 60 was loaded with the Lyman #358430 200gr bullet ahead of 2400. The bullet broke the spine, went through the chest cavity, traveled the length of the front leg and shattering it before exiting and plowing into the frozen earth never to be recovered.

I would think that a load like that should work nicely on a porker. Over at the cast boolit forum NOE was comissioned to do a 200gr SWC group by mold. From the testing that I've read that was done with that bullet is that it drives deep and straight as an arrow. Even the Lyman #358430 200gr bullet made it through 6 water jugs when started at only 750fps. Granted there are a lot of times that I'd like to have my .41 mag on my hip, but there are no shot shells made for the .41 mag unlike the .38 SPL.

Eb1
March 31, 2013, 08:31 PM
I have taken wounded deer that was shot in the hind quarters at 8 yards with a 32 H&R stub nose, but I wouldn't go hunting with it.
I shot it in the neck, broke two vertebrae, and severed the spine. Optimal hunting caliber? Possibly out of a rifle with a limitation of 50 yards.
My 32 H&R magnum stopped in the opposite side skin after breaking the neck. Total bullet penetration at 8 yards was 9". The 100 grain XTP mushroomed perfectly.

but there are no shot shells made for the .41 mag unlike the .38 SPL.
Sure there are. You just have to make them. :) Easily made with playing cards #9 shot and a Classic Lee Loader. Oh yeah, Elmer's glue.

This is all off topic though.

RCL
April 1, 2013, 09:53 AM
I'm gonna throw my 2 cents in here ..... there's probably more components out there right now for the .44 than most other big bore cartridges, even in today's tight conditions. Should be able to scare up a pound of Unique, 2400 or 110/296 some where, along with bullets and primers. Having loaded .44 Mag, .45 Colt and 454 Casull, it always seemed like it was easier to get the .44 to perform well than the others. And there's always some .44 Special brass kickin around for some light play time loads.

My take on a good packin gun.....I like the Model 629 4", but with a standard weight barrel.....seems like it tames the recoil some over the light tube on a Mountain Gun. Not that the recoil is harsh, just seems "whippy" to me with the light barrel. With a proper holster and belt, you won't notice the little bit of extra weight.
I never really got used to the feel of the one Redhawk I had, although I really liked the gun overall. I never found an aftermarket grip that didn't leave the gun sitting to high in the hand, and the stock grip, while it shot the best, never had that perfect feel to me, not like an N frame Smith does with Hogue's.

For a single action my preference is for a Bisley model Blackhawk as others have said.....I like the way the Bisley frames feels and shoots as compared to the standard or dragoon style grip frames. Again in .44 of course, although the one I have now is a .45.

If you feel the need for more power, it's hard to beat the .454 Casull in a Freedom Arms revolver.....you should probably find someone who has one though and see if you can shoot a few out of it. The grip frame on the Freedom Arms revolvers is a love/hate kind of thing....I had the factory fitted micarta grips on mine, and I liked the way they fit my hand. I never had much problem shooting full house loads under a 300 grain bullet....learning to roll with the recoil helps.

I think a Smith 629 4" would probably be the most practical myself.....easier to do more things with it.

Arkansas Paul
April 1, 2013, 10:38 AM
I like the idea of the 480 Ruger, but I have never known a person in RL that owns one, nor have I ever seen one in person.

I have not owned one, but I do have a little bit of real world experience with the caliber in a 7.5" Ruger Super Redhawk. It had a Leupold scope on it (not sure of the power), and it was wicked accurate.
Recoil was not nearly as bad as I expected, very manageable. Comparable to my .45 Ruger Blackhaw with "Ruger Only" loads.
The guy that owned it shot a whitetail doe with it at 110 yds and it was dead in it's tracks with complete penetration.

Jitterbug
April 1, 2013, 12:02 PM
I'm an old small guy and a 4" 629 in a Simply Rugged pancake works for me, I can easily carry it concealed with a cover shirt or jacket and this is important for me.

My "woods load" is a 280 gr. WFNGC Bear Tooth Bullet over enough H110 to get it going 1150 fps, I don't want to push the N frame with anything hotter or heavier then that.

I travel were there is lot's of Moose, Bulls and Buffalo and the occasional Grizz and I figure this load is a bear minimum.

There have been times when I wished I had the 4 5/8 SBH with a 300 gr. bullet in the honest to goodness 1200 fps range and one of these days will probably get one. For me that would probably be about all the handgun I'd want to pack on my hip or shoot.

This is about the most potent package I can handle carrying on my hip while on the trout streams and trails in my neck of the woods. For anything more powerful I'd probably want a carbine.

A 1911 Dan Wesson Commander in 10mm, pushing a 200 gr. WFNGC BTB at 1150 fps is a favorite and it's more comfortable to carry all day, it's the one that get's picked if the largest wild animal would be a black bear. If I were east of the Mississippi, especially in the southeast it would probably be all the gun I'd ever need.

But, when face to face with a cow Moose I have to admit the .44 feels a bit more comfortable on the hip.

Kachok
April 1, 2013, 09:26 PM
I'm fairly new to big bore revolvers, so bear with me. In the OP, he states he wants a handgun for hunting and hog protection. I think it's safe to say that having to protect oneself from a wiild hog attack is akin to winning a Power Ball Lotto

It is much more common then you would think, as I said my poor brother has been charged twice in the past five years, both times managed to get up a tree, another friend of mine was run up a tree recently too, seems pretty common around here though I myself have never been charged, but I don't often hunt the river bottom like they do.

35 Whelen
April 1, 2013, 10:47 PM
It is much more common then you would think, as I said my poor brother has been charged twice in the past five years, both times managed to get up a tree, another friend of mine was run up a tree recently too, seems pretty common around here though I myself have never been charged, but I don't often hunt the river bottom like they do.

I don't doubt in the least what you say, but I wonder if the hogs were actually charging, or just happened to run the wrong way as they don't have very good eyesight.

On a side note, when I was a teen, we raised hogs, mostly as show prospects. We had primarily Durocs although I had a Hampshire and a Yorkshire sow in addition to my Duroc and Dad had a herd of his own. Mine were VERY large sows, but very, very gentle as I had shown them in 4-H. Once in the farrowing house however, their personalitites changed and they could be very aggressive when their babies were handled for clipping needle teeth and ear notching. Contrary to legend, none of the boars I was exposed to including ours, and I mean not one of them, was aggressive in the least.

There are wild hogs on my property occassionaly, and they live on the creek north of the house. They very seclusive.

Jaymo
April 2, 2013, 01:20 AM
There's a huge difference between shooting a domestic hog in the brain with a .22, and trying to shoot a mean, pissed off feral 700+ pounder.
Pumphouse shots on swine require a lot of penetration, and the bigger the wound channel, the better.
Feral hogs get plenty big and mean in the Southeast USA. We had a 750 pounder killed in Fayette County, GA.
The longer they live in the wild, the meaner they get.
Kuhnhausen doesn't call 'em "Poor man's grizzly bear" for nothing.

Eb1
April 2, 2013, 10:14 AM
Jaymo, don't mean to lead to think I am lying, but we regularly kill hogs with .22 LR that have been born and raised in the wild. Some up to 350 lbs. A 40 grain solid to the ear or right behind the ear makes for a dead hog.
We never shoot the shoulder with .22 LRs though. That would be a bad idea.

460Kodiak
April 2, 2013, 10:39 AM
Beyond those you get into silly stuff like X-Frames that are best ignored as the fantasies of bean counters counting on foolish buyers.

This is a backup weapon so it needs to be easily handled - a 4" barrel would be best, it seems to me.

Well how Highroad of you wlewisiii. Way to call a whole bunch of people foolish simply because you don't like something........... Comments like this that are stated as dismissive fact just irritate me to no end.

By the way, don't assume that because you can't handle an X-frame quickly, that others can't. Not all of us are built the same, and to some of us larger folks, it isn't that hard. Also, don't assume that all X-frames are built the same either. Carrying a full size XVR would be silly as a back up gun, I agree. Owning a 3-6" bbl X-frame makes a lot of sense, for a lot of reasons.

Personally I do agree with you, and think in this case the OP would be better served with a 4" .44 mag or .45 Colt, but don't be so arrogant or short sighted to think that because you have no need or desire for an X-frame, that no one else in the world does. Different animals, conditions, and regions of the country require different responses. Have you ever come around a bit of brush and trees and found yourself looking at a grizzly bear that is about 30 feet away? Suddenly an X-frame doesn't feel silly. A .44 or hot loaded .45 would probably work fine, but I'm just saying don't knock something purely because you you have no need for it.

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