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can a 17 year old deer hunt with a black powder revolver

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by pitime, Oct 21, 2013.

  1. pitime

    pitime Active Member

    can a 17 year old deer hunt with a black powder revolver and if so how close must a legal guardian be to said 17 year old? i am a resident of MI

  2. Patocazador

    Patocazador Well-Known Member

    You will need to contact your DNR for the answers.
  3. jgh4445

    jgh4445 Well-Known Member

    That's pretty old for a deer. Sure he's up to it?
  4. Malachi Leviticus Blue

    Malachi Leviticus Blue Well-Known Member

    Yes if the 17 yr old has a Hunter Safety Card.
  5. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Well-Known Member

    If you can and go deer hunting with your revolver report back to let us know how it went.

    Good luck!!!!:)
  6. Loyalist Dave

    Loyalist Dave Well-Known Member

    You should start with Michigan's laws on handguns. In many states a black powder handgun is not restricted as a cartridge handgun would be. If that's true then you have passed the first hurdle. THEN you need to check the MI DNR regs on handgun hunting, and see if they address muzzleloading handguns, and powder requirements, or "power" requirements. Some states have minimum powder loads that might exceed the capacity of your black powder handgun, and some might have "power" requirements that would give you a clue as to how much powder you are required to use.

    For example, in Maryland a cap-n-ball revolver, or a single shot caplock or flintlock pistol, are not considered "handguns". You could hunt deer with them, BUT in Maryland you also have to be able to load at least 40 grains of black powder into the pistol as the main charge..., so except for the largest of the revolvers, you'd be limited to single shot pistols.

  7. Zeke/PA

    Zeke/PA Well-Known Member

    A lot has already been said here. Check your local game laws first. Then take the shooter to the range and let him become VERY familiar with the gun involved. My Grandson , from a sitting position, ROA braced across his knees can shoot 3" groups all day long at 50 yds.
    Shot placement is PARAMOUNT!
  8. 45 Dragoon

    45 Dragoon Well-Known Member

    I just wanna see that deer hold a gun !! THAT, is a scary thought !!!!!!!!!!!!

    45 Dragoon
  9. Arizona_Mike

    Arizona_Mike Well-Known Member

    At two and a half times the average natural lifespan I doubt the deer could even hold his bowels let alone a revolver :D

  10. Gatofeo

    Gatofeo Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't hunt any deer with a cap and ball revolver.
    Hunting ethics demand that you use a gun with ample power for a quick kill. Cap and ball revolvers lack enough powder capacity to generate the kind of velocity you need to ensure enough energy for a humane kill.
    Yes, I know about the Walker ... ad nauseum. The Walker will hold up to about 60 grains of FFFG black powder, under a lead ball.
    This may be at the heels of what's needed, but the problem with the Walker is its abysmal sights: a notch in the hammer and a brass bead up front.
    This sighting arrangement is not conducive to the high degree of accuracy required for hunting.
    The Ruger Old Army holds about 40 grs. of FFFG under a ball.
    Either revolver holds considerably less powder if a conical bullet is used, because there is finite space in the chamber: the longer conical takes up powder space.

    Accuracy rules hunting. You must put the bullet exactly where it will bring about a quick death.
    Bullet energy is at the heels of accuracy. You must have enough "oomph" to kill the animal quickly.
    Cap and ball sixguns are marginal for deer, as far as energy goes.
    Many people consider the max-loaded .38 Special and .45 ACP marginal for deer, and decry their use. Yet, some of these same people think a cap and ball .44 is just fine.
    This makes no sense to me.
    Cap and ball revolvers are at the lower end of ample energy to kill a deer. Yes, it's been done. But poachers have been killing deer with .22 rimfires for years. I knew a guy in northern Idaho who killed deer with an M1 Carbine. Doesn't mean either cartridge is sufficient or proper for deer.

    A single-shot .50 or .54 caliber pistol, when loaded with conical bullets and ample powder, would be fine for deer.
    But a 130 gr. lead ball at 1,000 fps, or a 200-220 gr. conical bullet at 900 fps? I'd consider either below marginal for deer.
  11. kanook

    kanook Well-Known Member

    Ruger Old Army, homemade lead pipe ball, 60 grains of Shockey's Gold, approx. 25yds, the only reason the deer went approx. 35yds was it went down hill.

    Attached Files:

  12. rodwha

    rodwha Well-Known Member

    I beg to differ on their being inadequate.

    Here's a video posted by Mr. Beliveau doing testing with a ROA, Kaido's 255 grn bullet, and a reduced charge of 3F Triple 7 which surpasses the typical power level of a 45 Colt with that weight of a bullet.


    Here's another video by Mr. Beliveau doing testing with an Uberti 1860 Army, a 240 grn Kaido bullet, and Goex. With the 30 grn charge it's dismal, but when he loads it with 40 grns you can see that it produces 900 fps and 432 ft/lbs, which is about like a typical 45 Colt load. I don't know how he got that much powder into his chamber though. But it wouldn't take that much powder to produce the same results were Swiss, Olde Eynsford, or Triple 7 powder used.


    I doubt many would state that the 45 Colt isn't enough gun for medium game.
  13. Pete D.

    Pete D. Well-Known Member

    Y'know.....the OP asked about a BP revolver.....a generic BP revolver. The responses in favor (I am not) immediately go to the Walker and the ROA. These are both far from mainstream examples. The Walker is a big, heavy, powerful gun with poor sights for hunting. The Ruger is a classy BP revolver that has not been in production for years and is not particularly easy to find and expensive when one does.
    As to adequacy....showing the odd video of someone successfully harvesting a deer with a BP revolver does not prove that it is a good idea. You can find a now classic video of a hunter taking a boar with a .177 caliber pellet gun....that does not mean that such use is a good idea. One example does not a proof make.
    If someone is a very good shot, if they pick the shot and the range is close enough, then one can take deer with a .22 short or a .36 cal BP revolver but for general use.....not.
    About the ,45 Colt....had a friend who regularly hunted deer with an SAA. He was experienced and took his shots carefully and close. Under those conditions the .45 Colt worked. Is it enough gun for medium game in general? Not without the qualifiers of experience and close range. No handgun is.
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  14. kanook

    kanook Well-Known Member

    Examples were giving about what should be used.

    Revolvers that the OP can see are capable of the question.

    18 Rugers for sale on Gunbroker as I type.

    If a person can save for a car or house, then a person can save for anything they choose. We do not know the OP's finances.

    I've helped people track and never find an animal because of poorly placed shots with so called more than enough calibers for deer rifle.

    The .177 pellet rifle was a good shot, no tracking involved.

    So we agree, if you can't place your shot, don't try it, with any tool used for hunting.

    No comment required when it appears that you have a closed mind to the subject.
  15. Pete D.

    Pete D. Well-Known Member


    "No handgun is."
    I probably should have written "no firearm is." (...is adequate without the qualifiers of experience and close range).
    Please don't get me wrong...I am not as close minded as you seem to think i am. I hunt with a handgun and have lusted after an ROA for years. I may yet buy one....I much doubt that I will hunt with it if and when I do.
    The other stuff.....I stand by. You and I have different definitions of mainstream. Regardless of how many ROAs are on Gunbroker .....it is not a gun that one sees very often, not readily available at the LGS.
    Don't see what that has to do with "0ne example does not a proof make."
    Ditto for the following idea.
  16. Zoogster

    Zoogster Well-Known Member

    What is your state?

    Your state of residence will determine this.

    Someone said Michigan but not the OP.

    While I don't recall all of Michigan's laws entirely offhand I do recall it is a state with a lot of restrictions. Including one of the only states that considers airguns under a certain size to be handguns and as such restricted items.
    So pellet pistols perfectly legal elsewhere for anyone and unrestricted must be purchased as handguns in Michigan complete with obtaining a permit and having it registered. Something someone under 18 should be unable to do.

    I also recall it considers long guns under I think it was 30 inches handguns as well, requiring a handgun permit and registration as if it was a handgun.

    As such I would be quite sure black powder handguns intended to be fired and carried with powder and ammunition would be thus considered a handgun no different than a centerfire or modern handgun in Michigan.

    As such minors are likely subject to the same restrictions they would be with any other handgun.
    So the answer should be the same as it would be if it was any other handgun in Michigan and not specific to black powder handguns.

    I see all kinds of restrictions against carrying handguns without a handgun permit, but don't know what exemptions for hunting there is.
    However based on Michigans other laws I am going to presume a minor hunting with a handgun, which in Michigan should include any firearm, airgun, or anything else that expels projectiles similarly and is under a minimum size is less than ideal.

    This may be confusing because federally they won't be considered handguns and may be obtainable in ways that other handguns are not, but will be considered handguns by the state of Michigan.
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  17. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Well-Known Member

    Good shooting Kanook!!! If I can get more confident with my 1860 Army with a heavier charge I'll go.
  18. rodwha

    rodwha Well-Known Member

    There are 2 Yahoo groups that are dedicated to BP handgun hunting. The 3 most often used pistols are the Remington 1858, ROA, and Colt 1860. These guys do this routinely.

    But they are also a better pistol shot than I am. I looked into being able to hunt with my ROA and found people lined up to tell me how woefully underpowered it was, that it was akin to a 38 Spl/S&W. I couldn't understand why it wouldn't be capable of 45 Colt performance and so I continued to look, and eventually found that it can exceed it.

    I haven't been able to consistently keep all of my shots within my designated group size. I can often get 5 within 2" or so, but for some reason I all too often get one or two that will open my group up quite a bit. Since I'm not consistent enough I cannot use it. That is unless they'd want to come sit at my feet!

    So for now it will just accompany me as a backup.
  19. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Well-Known Member

    I agree 100% Rodwha, I'll go if and only if I can get more confident and more consistent. If not I'll just keep using it for small game, groundhog, turkey, coyote, but there's enough hunting right there to keep me busy all year.:)
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2013
  20. Malachi Leviticus Blue

    Malachi Leviticus Blue Well-Known Member

    Some Clarifications...

    The OP said they were a resident of Michigan

    In Michigan an airgun with a rifled barrel is a firearm, and so an Airgun Pistol is required to be registered as a handgun, Michigan does not have a long gun registration so airgun rifles do not require registration.

    The Michigan anomaly often referred to as a "Michigan Pistol" where a long gun 26"-30" long was considered a pistol in Michigan was changed to mimic the Federal length of less than OAL of 26" on Jan 1st, 2013. Interestingly, A "Michigan Pistol" 26"-30" long that was registered by the owner as a handgun prior to Jan 1st, 2013 is still considered a handgun in Michigan and can be carried concealed by a CCW holder.

    Prior to 2004, there were interpretations of Michigan law that held Antique and/ or BP handguns were firearms and as such required registration etc. just like modern handguns. In 2004 House Bill 5427 was signed into law to Clarify antique firearm regulations in Michigan and became Public Act 99 of 2004, AKA "Janet Kukuk act". Today in Michigan, a BP revolver is considered an Antique and/or replica and not a pistol or handgun so there is no specific age restriction on their possession.

    Michigan does not have a minimum caliber requirement for hunting with muzzleloading rifles, muzzleloading shotguns, or black powder handguns, but they must be loaded with Black Powder or a Black Powder Substitute. They can not be loaded with smokeless powder.

    There is no specific restriction prohibiting a 17 yr old from possessing or hunting deer with a black powder revolver, and a 17 yr old does not require adult supervision while hunting in Michigan.

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