Why does firearm choice for hunting often stir so much controversy?


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Jason_W
February 9, 2014, 05:58 PM
Few things seem to polarize medium and large game hunters as much as firearm of choice.

To clarify: If I stated an intention to use a long or recurve bow, or a traditional muzzle loading firearm to hunt deer, few would have a problem with my choice.

Now, if I said I wanted to hunt deer with a .223, .357 mag, or smooth bore shotgun, wide-eyed vitriol would ensue from at least some forumites. Why is this?

A .223 or even .44 WCF is bound to ruin more vital tissue than even the most high-tech broadhead, so why is the bow hunter saluted and the .223 hunter admonished?

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tomrkba
February 9, 2014, 06:09 PM
I do not know. The arguments seem silly to me. If the bullet will humanely kill the animal at the distance, who cares?

A friend of mine uses a modified Mauser to take a deer every year. Another uses an AK-47 with brass cased hunting ammo and a short mag. A third guy uses a Mosin Nagant. My last manager used a Remington 7600 in 30-06. If I hunted deer, I would use either a Marlin 30-30 or a Winchester Model 100 in 308 Winchester because those are in my safe. I would feel confident with a rifle in 243 in my area since 100 yard shots are few and far between. Why anyone needs a scope for a 75 yards shot is beyond me.

jmr40
February 9, 2014, 06:36 PM
People often ask " which is best". There is no perfect answer and people often answer with their personal choice. I have strong preferences as to guns, scopes, and other gear. The caliber is far less important and most of the guns I own ended up being in the calibers they are in more by chance than by design.

rcmodel
February 9, 2014, 07:43 PM
Perhaps it is because a broad-head hunting arrow, in one side and out the other of a deers chest?
Will result in a DRT deer within 75 yards or less, and a blood trail Ray Charles could follow to find it. They usually are not in a great deal of pain, or any pain, and often just kick at the arrow when hit like a fly bit them.

A small caliber round, using the wrong type bullet, can result in a massive flesh wound and a badly wounded deer that may travel a long distance with no blood trail.
And suffer a slow and painful death a day or three later.

And it seems too me it is too likely a novice hunter with little firearms knowledge and a .223 will go to Wallyworld, buy a box of varmint loads, pop a deer in the shoulder bone, and then wonder why it ran off dragging one leg where he couldn't't find it.

rc

Jason_W
February 9, 2014, 07:54 PM
And it seems too me it is too likely a novice hunter with little firearms knowledge and a .223 will go to Wallyworld, buy a box of varmint loads, pop a deer in the shoulder bone, and then wonder why it ran off dragging one leg where he couldn't't find it.


that's a point. But if, in a similar vein, I suggested that a person just turning 18 should be required to take and pass a safety course before purchasing his or her first firearm, I would be run out of the gun community on a rail.

How is it cool to tell a fellow hunter that their weapon choice for hunting is all wrong, but it's not ok to tell them that they're not ready to operate a firearm in general?

Rembrandt
February 9, 2014, 07:57 PM
Why does firearm choice for hunting often stir so much controversy?
Few things seem to polarize medium and large game hunters as much as firearm of choice.

To clarify: If I stated an intention to use a long or recurve bow, or a traditional muzzle loading firearm to hunt deer, few would have a problem with my choice.

Now, if I said I wanted to hunt deer with a .223, .357 mag, or smooth bore shotgun, wide-eyed vitriol would ensue from at least some forumites. Why is this?

A .223 or even .44 WCF is bound to ruin more vital tissue than even the most high-tech broadhead, so why is the bow hunter saluted and the .223 hunter admonished?
__________________

As crazy as it may sound, the inertia from an arrow will penetrate further than most caliber bullets. Secondly, no one I know would recommend a .223 for large game....medium maybe, but not large game.

Bearhands
February 9, 2014, 08:12 PM
Because each contributor has a favorite this or that...... and is only familiar with their weapon and is confident in their choice... That's why there are many choices and many opinions.

hartcreek
February 9, 2014, 08:20 PM
I live in Washington and if your were not born before a certain date you have to take hunter ED period. So here in this state there are forty somes that take Hunter ED.

As for the calibre /method debate...... Some of use have learned what works better and what ruins less meat. I hunt is some nasty areas and I choose tools that limit the odds of me having to go into the really nasty areas to drag out game and beat up my busted up old body more.

Now I hunt archery but I have hunted and still have the equipment for Blackpowder and Modern hunting.

Art Eatman
February 9, 2014, 08:26 PM
About all I ever object to is "best". No "best", but quite a lot of "Good enough to do the job."

Sure, it's fun to pick nits about various favorites, but there's generally not enough difference to justify emotional squabbles...

Vol46
February 9, 2014, 08:27 PM
Perhaps it is because a broad-head hunting arrow, in one side and out the other of a deers chest?
Will result in a DRT deer within 75 yards or less, and a blood trail Ray Charles could follow to find it. They usually are not in a great deal of pain, or any pain, and often just kick at the arrow when hit like a fly bit them.

A small caliber round, using the wrong type bullet, can result in a massive flesh wound and a badly wounded deer that may travel a long distance with no blood trail.
And suffer a slow and painful death a day or three later.

And it seems too me it is too likely a novice hunter with little firearms knowledge and a .223 will go to Wallyworld, buy a box of varmint loads, pop a deer in the shoulder bone, and then wonder why it ran off dragging one leg where he couldn't't find it.

rc
^^^^
This - use enough gun.

Double Naught Spy
February 9, 2014, 08:53 PM
Simple. People often think that the choice they made or would make is the right choice and thus any variation from that is not, as if there is only one answer.

Kayaker 1960
February 9, 2014, 09:16 PM
Men have sat around the fire in deer camps, arguing the merits of this gun and that caliber for many years. The internet gives all of us know it all's a bigger audience. :o

buck460XVR
February 9, 2014, 10:08 PM
Few animals produce the extreme emotions in their hunters than the mystical whitetail deer. If I had a dime for every friendship that has been destroyed and every heated argument between family members and neighbors caused because of this mystical creature, I'd be a rich man. Funny....it seems to be a fairly recent phenomenon as 40 years ago folks saw them more as a resource to share, not only the hunt, but the access to hunt and the meat gleaned from the hunt. Not like that any more. I've stated this many times before. I hunt deer mainly with handguns anymore. When I take the .357 revolver, folks accuse me of being unethical and using a caliber/firearm barely capable of taking a deer. Strange.....the several deer I have taken with it went 40 yards or less and I never wounded and lost an animal when using it. If I take the .460, folks accuse me of trying to compensate for a small male body part and using a firearm that is nuttin' short of extreme overkill, while wasting every ounce of meat on whatever I shoot. Of course they claim, I'm only using such a weapon to make up for being such a poor hunter and lousy shot. Funny, none of the animals I've taken with it prove their statements. Used to be folks used the most appropriate weapon they owned, made the best shot on the animal they could, and then used tracking and outdoorsman skills to find an animal that did not drop in their tracks. Was the same for everybody and was an accepted practice. Whatever happened to that?

Andrew Leigh
February 10, 2014, 12:08 AM
It is because people defend the calibre's they have. One could hardly a calibre in a hunting rifle and then promptly tell everyone how poor it is for hunting.

People with numerous calibres seem to be less fussed and will recommend a wide range of calibres, those with only one calibre will defend that calibre to the end. This is how we are wired.

H&Hhunter
February 10, 2014, 12:38 AM
Here is my take on it. If you need to ask is such and such a caliber adequate for such and such game I think you already know to the answer. You're just trying to validate a poor choice.

If the round is adequate you don't need to ask anybodies opinion.

hovercat
February 10, 2014, 12:47 AM
It is Tradition!!!
It began with "That spear is not a big enough caliber for Mammoth!!"
A shorter spear may be easier to carry, but you lose too much distance and accuracy.
A 20 arrow quiver looks stupid and should be banned. 3 arrows is all you need.

And so it goes......

BigBore44
February 10, 2014, 03:31 AM
What happened is the flood of new magical cartridges that have flooded the market as "the best". Marketing by TV and magazines convinced the less knowledgeable hunters that all other "slower" cartridges were somehow, now, inadequate. Every cartridge has it's limitations. But more times than not, the limitation is the hunter.

There was an older advertisement I saw posted on here a couple weeks ago by Weatherby. It stated that their new cartridge was so devastating that a vitals shot wasn't necessary. I read that ad two more times just making sure I read it right. Also as buck460 mentioned about losing skills, people have substituted skills for equipment. New more accurate rifles and faster and better cartridges and bullets. New blood trailing lights. New camo. New optics. New this and new that. It all sounds wonderful. "If I buy all this new stuff, I'm almost guaranteed success! Just look at all these famous hunters killing these enormous deer while using these products! I gotta have them!" Unfortunately, through dependence of these products, people have lost many skills and knowledge.

I killed 2 deer this year with a rifle. First two I have killed with a long gun in a LONG time. Because I am a bow hunter. I only hunted with a rifle because I had one day to hunt and I wanted to ensure I filled my brother's freezer. And I did. Come to find out, I could have killed both deer with my bow, but it was a new area to me and this was to put meat in his freezer, not a challenge for my hunting skills.

Those who say the .223/5.56 is inadequate for deer are wrong. It is adequate. With the proper bullet, and proper range, in the hands of a good shooter, it's perfectly viable. As are so many others out there.

The debate of "best" is never going to be settled. Because there is no "best". There's is only "preferential adequacy".

As for defending our own cartridges and belittling others, I agree that it does happen, but not everyone does it.

Davek1977
February 10, 2014, 05:59 AM
And it seems too me it is too likely a novice hunter with little firearms knowledge and a .223 will go to Wallyworld, buy a box of varmint loads, pop a deer in the shoulder bone, and then wonder why it ran off dragging one leg where he couldn't't find it.



I guess one COULD make the argument that somepeople don't know any better and use inappropriate bullets, aka varmint bullets, but on that same token, one could be just as ignorant as an archery hunter, and hunt deer using field tips. A moron can be found behind a bow just as easily as behind a rifle, and poor equipment choices can doom a hunt of any type

Torian
February 10, 2014, 06:37 AM
Our ancestors got the job done with a whole lot less. Sometimes I still like I'm running around with a hand cannon with my little ol' 308.

MCgunner
February 10, 2014, 08:38 AM
People have their favorites and people like to argue. I am one who likes a good debate, but the old worn out "which deer rifle is best" is long past my caring. There's dozens, why would ONE be THE best?

I do get tired of the "ammo is sold everywhere" argument. I cannot remember the last time I bought factory ammo for anything other than shotguns and .22s. And, I can reload shotguns, just that it ain't that fun or profitable. I have tailored loads for my rifles and standard loads for my handguns.

Double Naught Spy
February 10, 2014, 10:09 AM
A hunting buddy's hunting buddy and I were chatting about 3 years ago about a boar I lost. I was shooting 5.56 and the shot was too far back. He started into this business about how I needed to "bring enough gun" which I later learned is a proverbial (maybe historic) catch phrase of a famous African hunter. "Bring enough gun" is apparently the answer to all your problems. He, of course, didn't waste his time with pathetic calibers such as mine. He shot things like .308, 7mm mag, and 12 ga slugs. Had I been using "enough gun" then I would not have lost that hog. He knew that and he wasn't even there! :eek:

I would see this guy 2-3 times a year when he would come down to Texas to hunt and he would get on me about bringing enough gun. Then he came back skunked from a hunt with my buddy. Maybe skunked isn't the right answer. Using a 12 ga slug gun, he bagged the leg of a feeder, missing what was reportedly a nice buck. I asked him how much is enough gun for a miss and about how he was going to cook the feeder. He hasn't bothered me since, LOL.

I find it amusing how folks are apt to blame bullet, caliber, firearm, etc. for problems with the hunter. "Enough gun" and the "right gun" is going to come down to a lot of things, particularly how well you use it.

Loyalist Dave
February 10, 2014, 12:10 PM
"Enough gun" and the "right gun" is going to come down to a lot of things, particularly how well you use it.

TOO TRUE

I'd say especially on how well you use it...

I have had conversations with folks who said that if you're using less than a .300 Win Mag or .338 Win Mag, you're going to need to do a lot of tracking of your whitetail. :eek: And in the same conversation say that a .30-30 "Won't take deer". :confused:

I have met many who try to compensate for an inaccurate rifle, or probably poor marksmanship skills, by using a very large caliber, and proclaiming all smaller loads "inadequate".

I have met folks that proclaim my 225 grain .530, lead round ball at 1500 fps as "unethical" to hunt deer at more than 50 yards, or a poor choice at any range over 60 feet. :what:

I have met some who do not understand ballistics, and will proclaim one cartridge as poor, while another superior, when in fact they are launching the same projectile at nearly the same muzzle velocity. True, one specific rifle may shoot what it is chambered in with better accuracy than a different rifle in a different cartridge ..., but that's not the same when comparing what the cartridge will do.

I have also met some novices who were told one opinion about a cartridge, then told the opposite in another opinion, and that's where I've seen most of the questions of "is this adequate?" It's not been that they knew, it wouldn't work..., only that they are getting conflicting information, and are seeking a wider group of opinions. Sometimes they are using a very old cartridge, and haven't done much research, so again the question is due to misunderstanding ballistics and performance, and wanting quick answers.

In this day and age of the internet, many folks want to Google a question and get the answer in mere seconds instead of being patient, reading up, and learning all of the parameters.

LD

der Teufel
February 10, 2014, 12:25 PM
It is because people defend the calibre's they have. One could hardly a calibre in a hunting rifle and then promptly tell everyone how poor it is for hunting.

People with numerous calibres seem to be less fussed and will recommend a wide range of calibres, those with only one calibre will defend that calibre to the end. This is how we are wired.

I think this is basically the case. Folks who have chosen a .223 don't want to admit that it might be too small for whatever they're hunting. Those with a big magnum hold an opposite opinion. What amuses me the most is the arguments over which is better: .308 or .30-06. :rolleyes:

MCgunner
February 10, 2014, 12:30 PM
I still think most that hunt medium sized game with the .223 do so because of the AR15. I'd prefer an AR10 for hogs, myself, but hogs are generally shot at short ranges where head shots are possible and a controlled expansion bullet from a .223 can be properly placed. And, I mean, IT'S a HOG, right? Who cares if it dies a day later, so long as it dies?

Mike1234567
February 10, 2014, 12:43 PM
I still think most that hunt medium sized game with the .223 do so because of the AR15. I'd prefer an AR10 for hogs, myself, but hogs are generally shot at short ranges where head shots are possible and a controlled expansion bullet from a .223 can be properly placed. And, I mean, IT'S a HOG, right? Who cares if it dies a day later, so long as it dies?

I vehemently disagree with the text I put in bold. Just because an animal is vermin in need of elimination doesn't mean it should suffer needlessly.

Andrew Leigh
February 10, 2014, 12:51 PM
A hunting buddy's hunting buddy and I were chatting about 3 years ago about a boar I lost. I was shooting 5.56 and the shot was too far back. He started into this business about how I needed to "bring enough gun" which I later learned is a proverbial (maybe historic) catch phrase of a famous African hunter. "Bring enough gun" is apparently the answer to all your problems. He, of course, didn't waste his time with pathetic calibers such as mine. He shot things like .308, 7mm mag, and 12 ga slugs. Had I been using "enough gun" then I would not have lost that hog. He knew that and he wasn't even there! :eek:

I would see this guy 2-3 times a year when he would come down to Texas to hunt and he would get on me about bringing enough gun. Then he came back skunked from a hunt with my buddy. Maybe skunked isn't the right answer. Using a 12 ga slug gun, he bagged the leg of a feeder, missing what was reportedly a nice buck. I asked him how much is enough gun for a miss and about how he was going to cook the feeder. He hasn't bothered me since, LOL.

I find it amusing how folks are apt to blame bullet, caliber, firearm, etc. for problems with the hunter. "Enough gun" and the "right gun" is going to come down to a lot of things, particularly how well you use it.
That was Robert Ruark the American PH who operated in Africa. He was noted for his exploits and ability to tell a story. The term was "Use Enough Gun" and was the title to a book he authored and was basically a "best of Robert Ruark" collection published posthumously.

Read it as young boy, was great then, wonder if it would still be?

crazysccrmd
February 10, 2014, 12:54 PM
I doubted the .223/5.56 for hunting until I shot a hog with it recently. The hog took two rounds to the chest cavity while at a run and piled up dead cold about 50m later. Certainly did the job even without great shot placement.

Jason_W
February 10, 2014, 12:55 PM
Folks who have chosen a .223 don't want to admit that it might be too small for whatever they're hunting

Limiting the discussion to whitetail deer, is it really too small assuming proper bullet selection and reasonable range?

I don't think anyone would advocate taking a 300 yard shot at a deer with a .223, but if ranges are likely to be 100 yards or less, with a good bullet, it will still destroy more vital tissue than an arrow or ball from a traditional muzzle loader.

The point I'm trying to make isn't .223 specific. The guy who wants to hunt deer with his .357 mag levergun, his 12 gauge loaded up with buckshot, or other firearm that is not a .24 cal or larger centerfire, is likely to encounter the exact same chorus of naysayers as the .223 deer hunter.

frankenstein406
February 10, 2014, 01:22 PM
Limiting the discussion to whitetail deer, is it really too small assuming proper bullet selection and reasonable range?

I don't think anyone would advocate taking a 300 yard shot at a deer with a .223, but if ranges are likely to be 100 yards or less, with a good bullet, it will still destroy more vital tissue than an arrow or ball from a traditional muzzle loader.

The point I'm trying to make isn't .223 specific. The guy who wants to hunt deer with his .357 mag levergun, his 12 gauge loaded up with buckshot, or other firearm that is not a .24 cal or larger centerfire, is likely to encounter the exact same chorus of naysayers as the .223 deer hunter.
From personal experience I would never use 223 on a deer again.

el indio
February 10, 2014, 02:39 PM
tomrkba,I use a scope for 75 yd shots. the reason being is that I have progressive lenses in my prescription glasses. In case you don't know, progressive lenses are three prescriptions in one lens. Try to find a sight picture when your vision can change when you move your head. That's why I use a scope in my big handguns also.

buck460XVR
February 10, 2014, 02:44 PM
That was Robert Ruark the American PH who operated in Africa. He was noted for his exploits and ability to tell a story. The term was "Use Enough Gun" and was the title to a book he authored and was basically a "best of Robert Ruark" collection published posthumously.

Read it as young boy, was great then, wonder if it would still be?


I read it as a boy too and it influenced my choice of firearms for many years. Looking back at it now, Ruark was like many of the "African Big Game" hunters of the time. They were shooters more than hunters and looked at African game much like loggers looked at the forests of North America in the 1800s......as an inexhaustible resource. History has proved them both wrong. Folks back then not only exploited the natural resources, but exploited the Native Aboriginals and looked at them as more like the animals they hunted than as humans.

MCgunner
February 10, 2014, 03:28 PM
I vehemently disagree with the text I put in bold. Just because an animal is vermin in need of elimination doesn't mean it should suffer needlessly.

Never trapped fur with spring traps, I guess.

Rest assured I use adequate calibers for a clean kill on game. .308 winchester and lately, 50 caliber front stuffer, are my usual rifles for deer/hogs. I'm not real keen on archery because my eyesight really isn't good enough to make 100 percent good hits past 25 yards and then you get back there in the woods in the shade and sometimes I can't see the pins on the background. In such situations, I don't feel well with taking a shot. Thinkin' about getting a scoped crossbow for this reason. BUT, that's another subject.

alsaqr
February 10, 2014, 03:44 PM
i usually stay out of firearm caliber choice debates: But will sound off when someone says what works for me can't possibly work.

A 55 grain .223 Remington bullet in the lungs trumps a 180 grain .300 Win Mag bullet in the guts.

Art Eatman
February 10, 2014, 03:50 PM
"...looked at them as more like the animals they hunted than as humans..."

Don't know about others, but Ruark absolutely does not fit that category. His writing absolutely reeks of empathy toward the African people. (Not so much for those who succumbed to Leftist teachings.)

Fast forward to today, and Ruark's comments about "enough gun" are paralleled by H&Hhunter's comments.

BigBore44
February 10, 2014, 05:17 PM
When I first joined here I was, and still am, amazed at the "is this_____(pick a cartridge) adequate for deer, or hogs, or elk?" threads. Sometimes I think they are started just to see how heated a debate will get. When an OP asks "is any cartridge from .223 to a 45-70 adequate for deer?" and anyone says no, for any reason other than distance or bullet selection, I automatically discount that person's knowledge and or reasoning abilities.

If a .243 can drop elk, why is it inadequate deer or hogs? If a .223 can kill humans, why is it inadequate for deer? If a 30-06 can kill moose, why is it inadequate for black bear? If Jack O'conner killed almost everything in NA and Africa with a 270, why would it not be adequate now? And heaven forbid someone ask if a 45-70 is adequate for cottontail rabbits. It will be a "1000 yard bison" thread within 10 posts.

R.W.Dale
February 10, 2014, 05:27 PM
It's because by in large I'd say 90% of hunters have absolutely no self discipline to pass on a less than optimum shot. You show me someone who says 223 isn't enough gun and I'll show you someone who will not pass on a "Texas heart shot" if that's the only shot that presents itself. For these people if they see fur they HAVE to shoot at it.


These people will spout off all sorts of drivel about respecting the animal and usually add in the phrase " slow and painful death" somewhere. But that's only because in their twisted logic there's NO SUCH THING as a bad shot with a 30-06.

As to the incipient assertion that a cartridge is bad because obviously folks are too dumb to buy the right ammo for the use. Well this applies to every shotgun, or rifle on all sorts of different game.

rbernie
February 10, 2014, 06:15 PM
When I was a young man, back in the days of simple cup-n-core bullets, the Conventional Wisdom held that North American thin skinned game needed 800ft lbs of energy to be humanely dispatched. I note that, on this board and others, the accepted minimum has now risen to 1000ft lbs of energy notwithstanding the advances of bullet technology.

Given that minimum energy level, I struggle to understand how our forefathers managed to stay alive in the pre-30-06 era. Maybe the game animals were just a lot smaller and more feeble back then.

Dunno.

d2wing
February 10, 2014, 09:39 PM
I think part of us is hard wired to hunt and also wired to argue for best hunting tools. It is what we do. Also some folks,have irrational attachments to certain weapons and cartridges. Much like Ford-Chevy arguments. I am guilty as well although I do like to make darn sure science and experience backs me up. Since many Black powder and most modern cartridges have killed most animals on Earth some of the arguments and claims are silly. But it is what we do.

H&Hhunter
February 11, 2014, 12:19 AM
That was Robert Ruark the American PH who operated in Africa.
Andrew you are mixing up your Americans here. Ruark was not a PH when he wrote use Enough Gun and he never became one, he was a writer who had been a new paper man before writing novels. You sir are confusing Robert Ruark with peter Capstick who was a PH and a writer.

He was noted for his exploits and ability to tell a story. The term was "Use Enough Gun" and was the title to a book he authored and was basically a "best of Robert Ruark" collection published posthumously.

Once again you are mistaken Robert Rurak was alive and well when he wrote Use Enough Gun. It was a book about his first safari with PH Harry Selby not a "best of book" in the slightest but very much in the spirit of Hemingway's Green Hills of Africa in fact almost identical in lay out.

H&Hhunter
February 11, 2014, 12:31 AM
They were shooters more than hunters and looked at African game much like loggers looked at the forests of North America in the 1800s......as an inexhaustible resource. History has proved them both wrong. Folks back then not only exploited the natural resources, but exploited the Native Aboriginals and looked at them as more like the animals they hunted than as humans.

buck,

Surely you are not talking about the same Robert Rurark who hunted kenya in the 1950's. By the 1950's Kenya had developed very strict license and game quota regulations that were upheld to the highest standards by it's Professional Hunters and Game Wardens. They had liberal yet extremely well managed bag limits with a limited number of hunters taking that game. Of course when you have a limited number of hunters and huge population of game your bag limits are going to be larger but not really any larger than are allowed to this day in many parts of Africa if the hunter is willing and able to pay the fees.

The great decline in Kenyan wildlife as I'm sure you already know occurred AFTER regulated big game hunting was banned by pressure from international animal rights organizations with the political support of crooked government officials whom had a vested interest in seeing the big game hunters go away as they the legal hunters were the only ones supporting and enforcing anti poaching. As soon as they were out of the picture poachers moved in and decimated the wildlife almost to extinction. As has happened everywhere in Africa that legalized and regulated sport hunting has been banned. Botswana is the next country to start seeing a massive decline in wildlife as they closed most big game hunting last year. Botswana's president also folded the pressure and bribes of international anti hunting groups which have proven to be the greatest bane and detriment to African wildlife in modern history.

buck460XVR
February 11, 2014, 10:31 AM
buck,

Surely you are not talking about the same Robert Rurark who hunted kenya in the 1950's.

Andrew, Once again you are mistaken Robert Rurak was alive and well when he wrote Use Enough Gun.

I am not criticizing Bob Ruark. Again, I was a big fan of his books and magazine articles growing up as a kid. Not a secret that the scurge of modern big game hunting in Africa is due to poaching and the greed from horn and hide. Same as anywhere in the world. Sadly, like the forests of North America, the African Plains will never see the numbers and the wealth of resources there once was. Testimony that you can't go back.

I too was under the impression that "Use Enough Gun" was a collection of previously published excerpts from Ruark's earlier works that was re-released in the book following his death.

1911 guy
February 11, 2014, 10:48 AM
I think R.W. Dale is very close to the mark. A lot of guns are "enough" when used within the limits of bullet weight, construction and velocity. We often choose bigger and faster to expand the envelope.

I've got a friend who has taken a lot of deer with an M1 carbine. He gets close and pops 'em. Never heard him tell stories about shooting one at more than 50 or 60 yards. Would be a very different story if he was trying to shoot deer with a .30 carbine at 200 yards.

H&Hhunter
February 11, 2014, 11:22 AM
Sadly, like the forests of North America, the African Plains will never see the numbers and the wealth of resources there once was. Testimony that you can't go back.

buck,

I think we need to define "back' in this statement. Depending on the species we are speaking of there are greater numbers today than have been historically recorded at any time in the past. Elk and whitetail deer are the prime examples. While there is no possibility that we will see millions of buffalo roaming the mostly uninhabited great plains ever again . Modern conservation through proper game management has proven a successful. Thank you Teddy Roosevelt!

Not a secret that the scurge of modern big game hunting in Africa is due to poaching

Agreed to secondary point of importance however. Poaching is the scourge of African wildlife for which the ONLY proven and sustainable defense is regulated sport hunting. It's been proven time and time again in every country that allows, promotes and uses the funds form hunting to manage the animal populations.

I too was under the impression that "Use Enough Gun" was a collection of previously published excerpts from Ruark's earlier works that was re-released in the book following his death.

My apologies to you and Andrew. Use enough Gun was published after Ruark's death. I was thinking of Horn of the Hunter which mimics to some extent Hemingway's "Green Hills"..

I'll make a new thread on my opinion of what "enough" gun means for my purposes.

buck460XVR
February 11, 2014, 12:11 PM
Poaching is the scourge of African wildlife for which the ONLY proven and sustainable defense is regulated sport hunting.

It's been proven time and time again in every country that allows, promotes and uses the funds form hunting to manage the animal populations.






I quite agree. I also agree that hunters/sportsmen and their commitment to conservation, not only with their money, but with their involvement is why we have the hunting, as we know it, here in the U.S.

That does not mean it had not been exploited in the past. The example you give of the Bison is one. Not only were they exploited because of their vast numbers, that once were thought to be inexhaustible, but they were taken to the point of extinction to exploit the venerability of those that relied on them for their way of life.

This tho is off topic and thus I apologize to the OP.

Arkansas Paul
February 11, 2014, 12:37 PM
It's because by in large I'd say 90% of hunters have absolutely no self discipline to pass on a less than optimum shot.

The thing is, if you use enough gun and the proper bullet, you don't have to pass on a less than optimum shot.

Now don't take that statement the wrong way. I'm not saying it is ever okay to shoot an animal facing you or facing away.

But if an animal is quartering away and I've got a .30-06 with a good cup and core controlled expansion bullet I can shoot it a little farther back and be confident that the bullet is going to drive through the ribcage and tissue, and have plenty of steam left when it reaches the vitals. Same on a quartering towards you shot. I shot a big 6 point with a 17.5" spread at 170 yds with a .30-06 and a 165 grain Remington Core Lokt bullet. It was quartering towards me. The bullet landed on the shoulder exactly where the crosshairs were and angled through the shoulder, through the lungs and lodged against the skin just forward of the off ham.

That would not have been possible with a .223. The deer would have limped off with it's leg dangling and would have likely been eaten by yotes. (That is if I would have been foolish enough to take that shot with a .223, which I would not have been).

Glocktogo
February 11, 2014, 12:52 PM
It's primarily an issue for so many, due to slob hunters with no ethics. If you are a humane hunter taking ethical shots, there are many "methods of taking" game that are perfectly acceptable. The problem is drawing that invisible line, which can't be done at all on the internet. From there, disagreements ensue.

I no longer hunt. When I did, I passed up a great number of what I'd call marginal shots, at least for my skill levels at the time. I knew plenty of hunters who wouldn't hesitate to take those shots, many of whom have wounded a lot of animals. I've only ever failed to recover one deer. It was a longish but makeable shot on a broadside buck with a compound bow. I hit it just a little too far back and believe I hit the liver instead of the lungs. I was sick for days about it and it still bothers me all these years later.

Some hunters just don't have that level of care and concern. If that's not you, then don't let what other say on the internet get to you. Hunt ethically and enjoy your time afield. :)

H&Hhunter
February 11, 2014, 01:24 PM
The thing is, if you use enough gun and the proper bullet, you don't have to pass on a less than optimum shot.


This is my philosophy 100%.

buck460XVR
February 11, 2014, 01:41 PM
The thing is, if you use enough gun and the proper bullet, you don't have to pass on a less than optimum shot.



With enough gun/weapon and proper bullets/ammo, one can take a optimum shot that would not even be practical with a different firearm or different ammo. Such was my reference in another thread when talking about shoulder shots on deer. With a bow or low powered handgun, a shoulder shot is not optimal and to many is a poor choice. But with a high powered rifle and proper bullets, for many, it becomes the preferred shot.

anothernewb
February 11, 2014, 01:59 PM
the post about hunters a bit back had it best. to some people -anything different is wrong. Those are usually the same people who have to always tell you why their choice is right.

but hey - it's a good thing there are different calibers. otherwise we'd all sit around the campfire complaining about wood vs synthetic....

Andrew Leigh
February 12, 2014, 12:12 PM
Andrew you are mixing up your Americans here. Ruark was not a PH when he wrote use Enough Gun and he never became one, he was a writer who had been a new paper man before writing novels. You sir are confusing Robert Ruark with peter Capstick who was a PH and a writer.

Nope, was thinking of Ruark but was 10 when I read the book so my memory is obviously very poor. I thought I remembered he was a PH and I stand corrected thank you.

Once again you are mistaken Robert Rurak was alive and well when he wrote Use Enough Gun. It was a book about his first safari with PH Harry Selby not a "best of book" in the slightest but very much in the spirit of Hemingway's Green Hills of Africa in fact almost identical in lay out.

Horn of the Hunter was written about his first safari with Harry Selby.

"His last novel, The Honey Badger, exemplified the condition of the author at this time in his life. The book was published posthumously, as was Use Enough Gun, which is essentially a collection of excerpts from his earlier works." Wikipedia and many other sources.

H&HHunter 1 : Andrew Leigh 1 so I call it a draw :)

BigBore44
February 12, 2014, 12:20 PM
^^Then we need a tie breaker!

H&Hhunter
February 12, 2014, 05:53 PM
My apologies to you and Andrew. Use enough Gun was published after Ruark's death. I was thinking of Horn of the Hunter which mimics to some extent Hemingway's "Green Hills"..

Andrew this^^^^ which I wrote is from post #43 prior to yours. I stand corrected and did apologize to you sir. That was the first mistake I've ever made in my life and I assure you it won't happen again!!:D ;)

The next time I'm in South Africa we'll have a "sudden death" thumb wrestling match to break the tie, winner takes all!

saturno_v
February 12, 2014, 06:50 PM
What truly make me laugh is the argument I hear quite few times (too many times unfortunately) usually from big bore fanatics is that all it matters is bullet diameter and bullet weight (the "momentum" theory), energy is a useless parameter, so is sectional density or velocity....I usually listen to people telling me this quietly and at the end of their argument I say "so according to your logic a 45 ACP round is a more effective round than a 300 Winchester Magnum"....pause....rolling eyes...hmmm....:p
Once a guy spouting such nonsense tried a way out telling me "well that does not count, one is a pistol round and another is a rifle round" :banghead:

sage5907
February 12, 2014, 06:59 PM
Quote: "Perhaps it is because a broad-head hunting arrow, in one side and out the other of a deers chest?
Will result in a DRT deer within 75 yards or less, and a blood trail Ray Charles could follow to find it. They usually are not in a great deal of pain, or any pain, and often just kick at the arrow when hit like a fly bit them.

A small caliber round, using the wrong type bullet, can result in a massive flesh wound and a badly wounded deer that may travel a long distance with no blood trail.
And suffer a slow and painful death a day or three later.

And it seems too me it is too likely a novice hunter with little firearms knowledge and a .223 will go to Wallyworld, buy a box of varmint loads, pop a deer in the shoulder bone, and then wonder why it ran off dragging one leg where he couldn't't find it.

rc"

What rcmodel said!

Andrew Leigh
February 13, 2014, 01:16 AM
Andrew this^^^^ which I wrote is from post #43 prior to yours. I stand corrected and did apologize to you sir. That was the first mistake I've ever made in my life and I assure you it won't happen again!!:D ;)

The next time I'm in South Africa we'll have a "sudden death" thumb wrestling match to break the tie, winner takes all!

Cool.

You come to my neck of the woods again and don't look me up and you are in trouble, even if I meet you at the airport during a transit.

Cheers

BigBore44
February 13, 2014, 03:32 AM
Saturno v,
I think you make a valid point....except that big bore fanatics (I am one of those) are talking about 400-500 gr bullets at ~1300-2000 fps (I'm more of a ~1500 fps kinda guy).

Standard 300WM load is ~180 gr at ~3100 fps.
45ACP is 230 gr at ~850.

You and I both know that's not a fair comparison. And those who don't have a rebuttal for your argument other that "well thats a pistol round!" are uneducated. Of course the 230 gr 45 is bigger and slower than the 180 gr 300WM. But we're talking ~ 2X's the weight of the ACP ~2 1/2 the weight of the 300WM and ~2X's the velocity of the ACP in the big bores.

So which is going to go through more water filled barrels? A Prius at 70 mph or a 1 ton with a ranch hand bumper at 55?

saturno_v
February 13, 2014, 04:00 AM
So which is going to go through more water filled barrels? A Prius at 70 mph or a 1 ton with a ranch hand bumper at 55?
__________________


Depending on sectional density :D:p ..and the prius-like bullet would crumple, let's call it "expansion"......:evil:

Joking aside, I understand what you say however velocity (and consequently energy) and SD still rule all things being equal (bullet deformation, construction, etc...)

This is the reason why a modern +P 45-70 500 gr. loading is considered a decent African cartridge where the old black powder original loading is not.....the former is heavier (higher SD) and significantly faster..

Hypervelocity rounds have their own drawbacks especially at very short distances...bullet behavior can become unpredictable, they can literally explode on impact causing only superficial wounds...I read and heard of few cases of whitetail lost to the 300 Magnums because of this where a 30-30 bullet would have peformed perfectly and far more deadly...


However I love big bores too by the way!! On the prowl for the right deal on a 45-70 Marlin (I want one really badly) and a true African rifle (.400+ cal) for my collection.

BigBore44
February 13, 2014, 04:40 AM
Lol. Yes, the pop can would crumble. It turn dispensing all it's kinetic energy much sooner than the 1 ton with the solid steel bumper that doesn't "expand. But in this case, bullet construction, bullet weight, and velocity cannot be equal. .458 vs .308. It just cant Be the same. That's pretty much the moot argument with the "which is better .308 vs 30-06?" The '06 has more "potential" due to increased case length and subsequent powder charge. But apples to apples, they are the same.

My advice on you getting a Marlin 45-70 is, DO IT!!! And you will quickly realize why it has so many dedicated fans. Mine is a JM stamped 1895. No guide gun or tac rail, just the original. Shoulders and swings like a dream. Way more accurate that I am. And I got a pretty good deal on mine. Free. It was 1 year old at the time and MAYBE 30 rounds through it.

Brake Weight
February 13, 2014, 04:44 AM
It's primarily an issue for so many, due to slob hunters with no ethics. If you are a humane hunter taking ethical shots, there are many "methods of taking" game that are perfectly acceptable. The problem is drawing that invisible line, which can't be done at all on the internet. From there, disagreements ensue.




I worked with a man last year in his early 50s with an uh oh baby. She is around 10 now. He is an avid outdoorsman and has trained her well. She hunts with a crack back H&R .223 and has taken more deer per year than he has every year she's hunted. She knows the vitals and has a shot placement like non other he says. Never lost a deer she's shot at and never had to track one. He also claims she's passed on more deer than she's taken. Granted these are Mississippi woods and less than 100 yard shots. But her knowing she's only got one chance makes her wait for the right shot. Something many take for granted thinking they'll get a second chance on a wounded animal.

Personally; location, desired game, and mood decide the gun. Small game-small caliber, but a .357m or .44m on the hip just in case. Deer-anything from a 25-06 to a slug gun is good for me in these woods.

Davek1977
February 13, 2014, 04:47 AM
It's because by in large I'd say 90% of hunters have absolutely no self discipline to pass on a less than optimum shot. You show me someone who says 223 isn't enough gun and I'll show you someone who will not pass on a "Texas heart shot" if that's the only shot that presents itself. For these people if they see fur they HAVE to shoot at it. You hunt, or at least witness, far different hunting techniques than I use or have witnessed. Deer are not in short supply here, and no one is going to starve, or not get their deer, by taking a less than good shot. If 90% of the hunters you observe or hunt with HAVE to "shoot a fur if they see it" I'd look into getting new hunting buddies or surrounding yourself with better people...actual "hunters" as opposed to "people who shoot at deer"......There's a significant difference. 90%? Damn, thats bad.....I won't say I've never seen that sort of behavior from people, but in my experience, it would be the 90% who actually take shots they will make, and 10% that will shoot at anything that gives them somewhat of an opportunity. Personally, I'd much rather not shoot than miss or make a bad hit, and thats regardless if I'm hunting with a .223 or a 7mm Magnum....both do the job, but both shine under completely different circumstances....

saturno_v
February 13, 2014, 05:23 AM
My advice on you getting a Marlin 45-70 is, DO IT!!! And you will quickly realize why it has so many dedicated fans. Mine is a JM stamped 1895. No guide gun or tac rail, just the original. Shoulders and swings like a dream. Way more accurate that I am. And I got a pretty good deal on mine. Free. It was 1 year old at the time and MAYBE 30 rounds through it.


All I want is a traditional 22" run of the mill Marlin 1895 blued, no ported barrel and with Ballard rifling, no microgroove

I would go for a screaming deal on a XLR 24" even if I'm not a big fan of stainless steel guns and I do not like that stock finishing.

Not particular fond of the 26" octagonal barrel version either...too "antique feeling" for me.

My ideal would be a 24" 1895 blued with full length magazine but it does not exist....

BigBore44
February 13, 2014, 06:21 AM
You just described my gun, minus the full length tube because it doesn't exist. You will be very happy with it. If you reload, it might be one of your most versatile rifles. YMMV of course. Hand loading opens up all kinds of possibilities for so many different cartridges.

Art Eatman
February 13, 2014, 09:18 AM
Kinda sorta wandered off from where this all started. The "Page 3 Syndrome".

:D

BigBore44
February 13, 2014, 10:34 AM
^^You're right. Sorry Art.

MCgunner
February 13, 2014, 10:35 AM
Saturno v,
I think you make a valid point....except that big bore fanatics (I am one of those) are talking about 400-500 gr bullets at ~1300-2000 fps (I'm more of a ~1500 fps kinda guy).

Standard 300WM load is ~180 gr at ~3100 fps.
45ACP is 230 gr at ~850.


So, what you're REALLY saying is YES, energy DOES matter? What does it really matter how you get that energy, via mass or velocity or a combination of both?

I clocked my CVA Wolf the other day, first time, over my chrony. The 385 grain bullet loaded over 70 grains FFF triple 7 did over 1800 fps, energy IIRC (could look it up, but I'm lazy) was up around 2800 ft lbs +! Now, THAT is a big bullet making some big energy, but I'll leave it at home if I hunt west Texas or New Mexico again. Range is limited and if I hunt New Mexico again, ever, it'll be during the early BP season when I'll have to take my Hawken to be legal as a "primitive" weapon. It works best with BP or Pyrodex and the same 385 grain Hornady Great Plains minie.

I think of that Wolf as a .50-90 Sharps without the brass. :D It's very accurate and all I need in the woods around here. And advantage to the big bullet approach is that you can use a simple chunk of non-expanding lead (it's pre expanded) and as Art says, eat right up to the hole. It doesn't leave the meat damage that I've seen with expanding bullets at close range in magnum calibers.

Oh, I've had those same conversations with the "big bore" fans in the past, the "energy doesn't matter" crowd.

MCgunner
February 13, 2014, 10:40 AM
Okay, I drifted off topic a bit again....sorry. Not really, though, it has to do with caliber wars, right?

BigBore44
February 13, 2014, 11:19 AM
MC,
I'm not sure which side you're debating for. Smaller/faster or bigger/slower. But yes, energy does matter. While mass and velocity are "cohabitants" in terminal ballistics, they are not mutually exclusive. That's why the 45 and 300WM is not a fair comparison. But when penetration is desired over hydrostatic shock, bigger/slower, solid/harsdcast is the winner. And you, Art and I know that a big hardcast right behind the shoulder is not always, but usually, a very short tracking job if it isn't DRT. It also equals more clean meat and less hamburger.

We all have our favorites for our own reason(s). Doesn't mean that any of them are wrong. .223-338 Lap. In the hands of the right rifleman, with the right bullet, all are deadly.

mavracer
February 13, 2014, 11:55 AM
Because too many here use the caliber X is better than caliber Z because the hunter using caliber Z will be a moron that takes too long of shot for conditions and or ability and thus proves that caliber X is the best and by extension proves that a hunter equiped with caliber X is the best.

MCgunner
February 13, 2014, 12:09 PM
MC,
I'm not sure which side you're debating for. Smaller/faster or bigger/slower. But yes, energy does matter. While mass and velocity are "cohabitants" in terminal ballistics, they are not mutually exclusive. That's why the 45 and 300WM is not a fair comparison. But when penetration is desired over hydrostatic shock, bigger/slower, solid/harsdcast is the winner. And you, Art and I know that a big hardcast right behind the shoulder is not always, but usually, a very short tracking job if it isn't DRT. It also equals more clean meat and less hamburger.

I'm not arguing FOR either approach. I'm saying both work via they make enough energy. Each approach has its merits and weaknesses. If you have shots across open canyons at 350 yards, you'll probably be biased toward the smaller bore, higher velocity gun with the high ballistic coefficients. If you're hunting woods like I am now, you might want the benefits of that big bore gun. As you say, less hamburger, more undamaged meat, and a GREAT hole to put blood on the ground. Either approach will work in the woods, but across those canyons the high velocity approach is my preference. Not saying a .50-110 can't shoot 400 yards. Hell, that shot at Adobe Walls was what, a mile? Probably a LOT easier with the HV rifle, though, and more ethical to try.

So, you see, I'm taking both sides of the "argument". I see the merits and weaknesses of either the big bore/slow or the small bore/fast approach. I'm not really a fan boy of either, like owning both. Closest thing I have to a big bore cartridge rifle is a .357 lever carbine. I've thought of getting a .454 or a .45-70, but there ain't nothin' around here I'm that mad at. :D That front stuffer is WAY cool, though, and I enjoy hunting with it even if it IS in rifle season. :D I think of it as a modern rifle, just slow to load.

BTW, the old standby with magazine writers was always 1000 ft lbs minimum on deer, 1500 on elk. Well, with a big bore gun, I really don't think that's accurate. You can probably drop down to 800 for the big bores if not a little less. I totally have no proof of this, it's just a feeling I get from hunting with both and with handgun calibers. Don't ask me to prove it 'cause I can't. It's JMHO.

buck460XVR
February 13, 2014, 12:09 PM
Kinda sorta wandered off from where this all started. The "Page 3 Syndrome".

:D

....at least it MADE it to page three! :D

ZeroJunk
February 13, 2014, 01:49 PM
Because there is little about the benefits of this or that cartridge over this or that other cartridge that can actually be proven.

As far as the U.S , chances are that if the 30-06 was the only cartridge ever invented the total number of animals taken would be the same. Might even be higher.

saturno_v
February 13, 2014, 02:27 PM
Just to make sure...the hydrostatic shock theory has never been scientifically proven....small local area of hydrostatic displacement do occur with very high velocity rounds (the concept for example is totally laughable with handgun rounds) but if that adds to the stopping power is very debatable and up in the air.

Bullets kill destroying tissue along its path and penetrating to vitals, the factor influencing this are bullet diameter (including expansion in the equation when solid are not used) the velocity/energy duo and bullet SD, shape (for solids) and construction. That much is proven and not debatable.

Because there is little about the benefits of this or that cartridge over this or that other cartridge that can actually be proven.


That is very correct....there are several variables that are in place for every shot that is taken.....every situation is different.....people remain baffled sometimes in an apparently similar scenarios where for example a deer is lost to a 300 WM but drop like a sack of potato with a 30-30......

MCgunner
February 13, 2014, 02:37 PM
Just to make sure...the hydrostatic shock theory has never been scientifically proven....small local area of hydrostatic displacement do occur with very high velocity rounds (the concept for example is totally laughable with handgun rounds) but if that adds to the stopping power is very debatable and up in the air.

Bullets kill destroying tissue along its path and penetrating to vitals, the factor influencing this are bullet diameter (including expansion in the equation when solid are not used) the velocity/energy duo and bullet SD, shape (for solids) and construction. That much is proven and not debatable.


NO theory of terminal ballistics is "proven", but the support for "ballistic pressure wave" affects on nerve cells remote to the wound path and the research done by Dr. Michael Courtney is very compelling to me. It explains a lot of my bang/flop lung shots for one. I'm swayed by his research, but I was already trying to explain these things when I stumbled upon his research...actually, on this forum.

saturno_v
February 13, 2014, 02:44 PM
NO theory of terminal ballistics is "proven",

True but this:

Bullets kill destroying tissue along its path and penetrating to vitals, the factor influencing this are bullet diameter (including expansion in the equation when solid are not used) the velocity/energy duo and bullet SD, shape (for solids) and construction. That much is proven and not debatable.

Is not a theory, these are observable facts....I think we can all agree that if exactly the same shot is taken with a .22 cal bullet vs a .50 cal bulet (same shape) the .50 cal will destroy more tissue along the way and that if you do not reach the vitals (or break bones) an animal is not going down.


The potential hydrostatic shock effects are ancillary to this.....


Personally I think that a lot of bang-flop situations are more due to the particular state of the animal at that time than anything else....my opinion.

MCgunner
February 13, 2014, 02:45 PM
Another reason for caliber wars online, at least on hunting forums....there's only small game this time of year and other places not even that. So, there's no hunting stories, pix to post of fresh kills. Gotta post SOMEthing! :D

MCgunner
February 13, 2014, 02:55 PM
Bullets kill destroying tissue along its path and penetrating to vitals, the factor influencing this are bullet diameter (including expansion in the equation when solid are not used) the velocity/energy duo and bullet SD, shape (for solids) and construction. That much is proven and not debatable.

Is not a theory, these are observable facts....I think we can all agree that if exactly the same shot is taken with a .22 cal bullet vs a .50 cal bulet (same shape) the .50 cal will destroy more tissue along the way and that if you do not reach the vitals (or break bones) an animal is not going down.

I guess I give the ballistic pressure wave theory more clout than you seem to. I know crush cavity is a wounding mechanism, but especially at rifle energies, the energy plays a bigger role than I think you give it credit for. This is JMHO supported by Courtney's research. Matters not what makes that energy, big/slow bullet or smaller, faster bullet, the pressure wave will be the same, at least according to Courtney. He claims and supports that bullets over 500 ft lbs start showing these effects. I find more arguments over this on pistol boards than hunting. Most have seen the effects of a magnum rifle on these boards, the remote tissue damage that can be done. I've seen the lungs of a doe simply vanish when hit by a 7mm Rem Mag at 50 yards. I was astonished at the damage. I've seen a 3" diameter wound path along the wound track from a .357" SWC bullet at 80 yards fired from a rifle. Energy was only about 800 ft pounds at that range. It was a lung shot, died inside 25 yards from where shot. I've seen a spike drop so fast into the grass from a high lung shot from a .30-30 contender, I'd af first thought I missed. Shot was 90 yards. I could go on and on. None of this is explained by simple crush cavity. Energy does play a role, I'm quite convinced.

MCgunner
February 13, 2014, 02:59 PM
And, now, I think I'll go squirrel hunting and come back and read the infuriated debate later. You see, squirrel season never ends, here...C YA. :D

saturno_v
February 13, 2014, 03:09 PM
I guess I give the ballistic pressure wave theory more clout than you seem to. I know crush cavity is a wounding mechanism, but especially at rifle energies, the energy plays a bigger role than I think you give it credit for. This is JMHO supported by Courtney's research. Matters not what makes that energy, big/slow bullet or smaller, faster bullet, the pressure wave will be the same, at least according to Courtney. He claims and supports that bullets over 500 ft lbs start showing these effects. I find more arguments over this on pistol boards than hunting. Most have seen the effects of a magnum rifle on these boards, the remote tissue damage that can be done. I've seen the lungs of a doe simply vanish when hit by a 7mm Rem Mag at 50 yards. I was astonished at the damage. I've seen a 3" diameter wound path along the wound track from a .357" SWC bullet at 80 yards fired from a rifle. Energy was only about 800 ft pounds at that range. It was a lung shot, died inside 25 yards from where shot. I've seen a spike drop so fast into the grass from a high lung shot from a .30-30 contender, I'd af first thought I missed. Shot was 90 yards. I could go on and on. None of this is explained by simple crush cavity. Energy does play a role, I'm quite convinced.


Very localized hydrostatic effects with high velocity, high energy rifle calibers have been observed indeed...hwo this help you more in taking down an animal is debatable....maybe some organs respond more to this as per your observation.

buck460XVR
February 13, 2014, 04:00 PM
Very localized hydrostatic effects with high velocity, high energy rifle calibers have been observed indeed...hwo this help you more in taking down an animal is debatable.


I sometimes think that when butchering/processing deer Hydrostatic shock damage looks a lot worse than it really is. I've butchered deer where the animal was hit in the spine above the front shoulders and the shock from the bullet impacting solid bone produced blood meat and bruising in the backstraps all the way to the hind quarters. While it looked bad and took away from the quality of the meat, I doubt that it did much to put the animal down or that it would have considerably increased the odds of retrieving the animal if the principle wound from the bullet did not do it's job. Other damage to tissue from other wound locations on other deer, shows similar bruising and blood swelling, but it's always been hard for me to tell, if the superficial damage around the primary wound channel, really contributed anything more than just making a mess. Yes there was more blood loss, but was it enough to make a difference? I've yet to retrieve a deer where damage to muscle was the primary cause of death. Direct damage to organs of high blood flow or main arteries generally, along with good bloodtrailing of animals with poor hits and broken bones, finished off with a quality shot is always how I have gotten them.

ZeroJunk
February 13, 2014, 06:07 PM
I have killed deer with arrows, buck shot, round balls, pistol bullets, and assorted usual suspect center fires. I bought a 300 Weatherby a few years ago and shot about a dozen deer with it. Every deer I shot was a literal DRT except one. On average quite a bit quicker kill than even a 30-06. Now, would I have gotten the deer with many others ? Sure. Do I suggest a 300 WBY for deer ? No. But, there is no way all the extra energy in more powerful cartridges is wasted. Not necessary is fine.

saturno_v
February 13, 2014, 07:12 PM
But, there is no way all the extra energy in more powerful cartridges is wasted. Not necessary is fine.

I claim that in some situations the extra energy could be indeed wasted or even couterproductive....

Like hitting a deer at short range a deer with a 300 Weatherby and having the bullet literally explode on impact generating only a large and non fatall surface wound where a 30-30 would have mushroomed beautifully and do the work...happened more than once...another variation is hitting the same small deer with the 300 Wby and the bullet does not even have the time to open up properly and all the extra energy is wasted in the background environment.

Art Eatman
February 13, 2014, 07:30 PM
Just shoot 'em in the danged white spot and quit worrying about it. :D

R.W.Dale
February 13, 2014, 08:00 PM
Just shoot 'em in the danged white spot and quit worrying about it. :D


On which end?
;-)

MCgunner
February 13, 2014, 09:16 PM
On which end?
;-)

You don't really have to ask...right?

:D

Savage99
February 13, 2014, 09:41 PM
The puny 223 was chosen to wound the enemy soldier. That makes even more trouble on that side.

The 22's are not legal in most places because they are not big enough to be humane.

That's the crux of the issue. They are not humane!

http://img0095.popscreencdn.com/149797684_use-enough-gun-robert-ruark-on-hunting-big-game-first-.jpg

AKElroy
February 13, 2014, 09:49 PM
Why anyone needs a scope for a 75 yards shot is beyond me.


Astigmatism. Some of us love to hunt, are very good shots, all while looking through an evil scope due to the fuzziness associated with traditional sites and astigmatism.

Sitting in front of me is a beeman air rifle with a 3x9x40AO scope. It is zeroed for 10 meters. I can drive pellets into one hole with boring regularity, and I love to shoot. The scope enables my inner marksman that my eyes would have retired a long time ago.

I believe the OP is making the point that one mans equipment, assuming he is effective with it, is his own business. Can we please extend that notion to optics? This is maybe the bazillionth thread containing the ubiquitous "What idiot needs a scope to...."

All I know is I have a full tag and a full freezer. So I guess I'm that guy who needs it.

AKElroy
February 13, 2014, 10:01 PM
The 22's are not legal in most places because they are not big enough to be humane.

That's the crux of the issue. They are not humane!

Humane for what? In my neck of the woods, pigs are dropping to .223's likely more than any other round. I have an adjacent ranch mowing down pigs from helicopters with AR 15's. The pigs are apparently dying OK; those boys are raking in the cash.

I personally prefer more gun, and I do not own an AR. That said, I have many times hunted with a gentleman that fills his tag just fine with a savage bolt gun in .223.

AKElroy
February 13, 2014, 10:21 PM
Like hitting a deer at short range a deer with a 300 Weatherby and having the bullet literally explode on impact generating only a large and non fatall surface wound where a 30-30 would have mushroomed beautifully and do the work...happened more than once...another variation is hitting the same small deer with the 300 Wby and the bullet does not even have the time to open up properly and all the extra energy is wasted in the background environment.

I've never heard of a 300 weatherby, or any center fire rifle cartridge "exploding on impact, creating a non-fatal surface wound".

I have taken many deer and hogs with .243's, .30-30's, .270's, .308's, 7mag's, and I have had some run, some DRT, some, even the .30-30's, exhibiting massive tissue damage and monstrous exit wounds, while others run from a boiler room shot from the 7mag. I can honestly say I have not seen faster kills between any of the cartridges I listed above. While two animals is hardly a pattern, the .243 is the only one of the above rifles that has never had a whitetail take a second step.

Ballistics are a complicated study in the real world. So many variables make broad general statements on either side kind of silly.

ZeroJunk
February 13, 2014, 10:23 PM
Like hitting a deer at short range a deer with a 300 Weatherby and having the bullet literally explode on impact generating only a large and non fatall surface wound

Not sure where you read that, but a 150 grain bullet going 3500 FPS is not going to splatter on a deer They do splatter the deer on the trees and bushes behind it.

another variation is hitting the same small deer with the 300 Wby and the bullet does not even have the time to open up properly and all the extra energy is wasted in the background environment.

I had that happen one time out of twelve. The other 90 some percent of the time it was nice to have the deer right where I shot it.

R.W.Dale
February 13, 2014, 11:04 PM
I actually have shot a deer at close ish range (75yds) with a 300wby and the results were quite....well...odd

The deer was VERY drt, but upon field dressing it became evident that the bullet behaved very strangely.

The shot was on the shoulder with IIRC a 180g CT silver tip. There was one small exit wound ON TOP OF and behind the shoulder blade on the entrance side. There was no puncture into or damage WHATSOEVER into the chest cavity.

I had the deer processed so no further investigation was done.

Earlier this year I shot a big doe with a 55g game king from a 22-250 at around 100yds facing me head on right in the chest (white spot) the mrs pulled a complete (and quite thick) bullet jacket out of the heart as she was slicing it up to fry. So even non premium 22cal bullets have the potential to penetrate surprisingly well

saturno_v
February 13, 2014, 11:37 PM
I've never heard of a 300 weatherby, or any center fire rifle cartridge "exploding on impact, creating a non-fatal surface wound".



Not sure where you read that, but a 150 grain bullet going 3500 FPS is not going to splatter on a deer They do splatter the deer on the trees and bushes behind it.


Oh yes it has happened.....bullet not holding up and exploding on impact, hitting a bone at a certain angle, etc....as AKElroy said, Ballistic is a complicated matter and bullets sometimes behave oddly....

I also remember a story of an Alaskan hunter that had that sort of thing happened to him (300 Weatherby) against a big brun shot at 10 yards or so.....bullet fragmented on impact and he had the most interesting 5 minutes of his life.....

H&Hunter is aware of this as well.

Here you go another similar story from an Alaskan bear hunter

http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/showthread.php/138071-barnes-for-grizzly


I killed a lot of bears with Barnes TSXs, with 180s out of a 300WM, only issue I had is they do not leave that large of an exit, great for food, not so great for bears. When the tipped TSX came out I thought they would be better for long distance. Shot a brown bear and when we got to him, he did not know he was dead, tried to eat us, shot him several more time to remind him. The TTSXs fired at 25 yards exploded on impact, only penetrated a few inches and grenaded. That was my last time using them, as I said killed lots of critters with them, just found Accubonds to work better for me.

BigBore44
February 13, 2014, 11:58 PM
The caliber debate is something that will never be settled. Because of the advancement in recent years "most" calibers are pretty much equal in terms of lethality, assuming the shooter does his job properly. I have seen deer drop from a .223, 22-250 Ackley, .243, 7x57, .260, .270, .280, 25-06, 30-30, .308, 30-06, 300WM, 300RUM, 35 Rem, .357, .44 mag, .454 Cas, 45-70, and a .500 S&W..... Why do I mention all the these? Because they all killed quicky and effectively and they vary greatly in diameter, weight, and velocity.

Davek1977
February 14, 2014, 06:55 AM
The puny 223 was chosen to wound the enemy soldier. That makes even more trouble on that side.

The 22's are not legal in most places because they are not big enough to be humane.

That's the crux of the issue. They are not humane!

Well, first of all, while I've heard the claim the .223/5.56 was designed to wound, not to kill, I've never, ever seen anyone be able to prove that claim with any sort of valid documentation. Its an urban legend with no actual basis in truth that anyone can provide. If you want to believe hearsay, I won't be the one to tell you to stop. As for the other claim, that the .223 is not "humane" I disagree. I've shot both mule deer and whitetails with it, and they both died just as dead as any deer I've shot with my 7mm. Mag. The average deer isn't armor plated, and tend to die when a bullet is placed in their vitals. If you can't do that consistently with a 223, or aren't willing to limit your shots to what is effective, you're right, it isn't humane, but neither would any other caliber....If you can't put the bullet in the vitals, it doesn't matter if you are hunting with a .22 or a .50BMG. The 223 will work perfectly fine on deer, but as with any weapon, the shooter needs to be ware of his...and the cartridge's....limitations.

Jason_W
February 14, 2014, 07:10 AM
It's also worth pointing out that it is untrue that .22 centerfires are illegal for medium game hunting most places. In fact, most states allow them or have no cartridge restrictions at all.

ZeroJunk
February 14, 2014, 07:41 AM
Oh yes it has happened....

I got away from Barnes X type bullets as well because of failures. But, it was from a 280 .

I saw where a kid got hit in the head by a meteorite a while back.

A rare failure is no reason not to use a cartridge that by any measure is a more powerful and reliable killer on average.

MCgunner
February 14, 2014, 08:11 AM
Astigmatism. Some of us love to hunt, are very good shots, all while looking through an evil scope due to the fuzziness associated with traditional sites and astigmatism.

Yup, let some of these anti scope youngsters grow up a little and they'll be in the market for optics. I'm getting to where I can't even see irons back in the shade of the woods, relented to putting a scope on my 10/22! Blasphemy! Scopes, though, even if you still have good eyes, extend the day, especially in heavy cover.

I've given up the idea of bow hunting. Tried it this season and, hell, I can't see the pins and the sun is still up, low, but up! Thinkin' of getting a crossbow and putting a scope on it. Gotta check the rules, though, not sure they're legal iin bow season, think they are now. Sure a lot of shops around selling 'em now days. Part of my problem with a bow is I shoot right handed and ain't really wanting to try to shoot lefty. I changed over with firearms at age 8. My bum right eye was the obvious problem even then.

That guy Ruark wrote a WHOLE BOOK on this subject? I can sorta see how these threads turn into a book, but who was he arguing with? Is the guy schizo or something? :D

jmorris
February 14, 2014, 08:28 AM
Why does firearm choice for hunting often stir so much controversy?


1. Ever since the first cave man killed something with a club vs just running them off a cliff there has been debate on what to use to get meat to eat.

2. People don't have anything better to do.

T.R.
February 14, 2014, 09:14 AM
That's a very good question. I believe that some guys have an agenda to preach and that's why posts about .243 and 30-30 get so many mixed statements.

When a good bullet is shot through the chest organs, death is soon the follow. Some cartridges have more reach but that doesn't make them any better than others.

TR

ZeroJunk
February 14, 2014, 09:14 AM
Yeah, but they are fun or they wouldn't be the most popular threads.

Jason_W
February 14, 2014, 09:23 AM
And people are often completely immovable from their preconceived notions.

For example, I could hunt deer for the next decade with something like a shotgun loaded with buckshot, never lose a single deer, and there would still be a chorus of naysayers who will take the time their uncle Pete's friend's cousin wounded a deer with buckshot back in 1954 as all the evidence the need that buckshot is inadequate for deer. Replace buckshot in the above statement with any "marginal" round and it still holds true.

We implicitly trust any citizen over 18 to own and operate a firearm, but we do not trust that they will know the on-game capabilities and limitations of their firearm in the field.

Robert
February 14, 2014, 10:02 AM
Let's call this one done. Use what works for you and is legal in your state and don't worry about what the internet says.

Art Eatman
February 14, 2014, 10:33 AM
Yeah, done. Five pages. :)

It's Internet pheromones. They seep from monitors, increasing the emotional content of any and all subjects. :D

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