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Contender caliber?

Discussion in 'Handguns: General Discussion' started by AndABeer, Jul 2, 2003.

  1. AndABeer

    AndABeer New Member

    Been considering a Thompson Contender for some time now. Most likely I will purchase it very soon. Would any of you say there is a quintessential chambering for this multicaliber pistol? I know I can get new barrels as I like but I am curious if there is a common opinion as to what should be the first. Pistol caliber? Rifle caliber?
  2. critter

    critter Active Member

    Hummmmm. Hard question. Certainly, pistol calibers out of a contender barrel will be more accurate and have more velocity. However, pistol calibers having short, fat bullets will not be as good for long range as the accuracy of the contender is good for. These will be fine if your use is up to 100 yds and if you need the 'thump' of a fat bullet. A good .44 mag or .45 colt chambering will fit these needs.

    However, the accuracy potential of the Contender is better suited to some of the rifle calibers. I have a .223 and a 30-30 win. They cover my needs in this handgun. Both are super 14" models and both carry scopes. Accuracy has to be seen to be believed. Don't think 'handgun' type accuracy; think 'rifle' accuracy. I have few rifles that will hold the accurcy of either barrel. The .223 is great for varmits and smaller stuff while the 30-30 is amazing on deer and similar sized game.

    Think about what you will be shooting at, how far and match the chambering accordingly. Good luck-but beware!!! You WON'T settle for just one!
  3. AndABeer

    AndABeer New Member

    I had planned on "potato chipping" the barrels from the get go. Right now I am gravitating towards .223 as the starter as I only have an AR in that caliber.
  4. Omaha-BeenGlockin

    Omaha-BeenGlockin Active Member

    .30-30 came to mind when I read your 1st post-------but you never stated what your planned uses are.
  5. 41 Redhawk

    41 Redhawk New Member

    30 and/or 357 Herrett and 7mm TC/U are all wonderful in a Contender
  6. AndABeer

    AndABeer New Member

    uses: paper punching, North American game
  7. Al Thompson

    Al Thompson Moderator Staff Member

    IMHO, for deer sized and below, either .30-30 or .35 Remington are good choices. The ammo is available at Wal-Mart and cheap in .30-30.
    I've played with two 14 inch barreled TCs and they are very accurate. Ballistic Tips work real well too - less FPS = more penetration.
  8. critter

    critter Active Member

    I'm with Al on the ballistic tips. They are super in the contender. Absolute death ray on average size whitetails out of my 30-30. Out of the .223, they are devistating on varmit size stuff.
  9. YodaVader

    YodaVader New Member

    My first barrel was a 10" 357 Mag and it is no slouch in the accuracy dept. as shown in the attachment. The Super 14 I owned was in .223 and the post stating rifle accuracy was my experience as well. I think TC is producing 12" barrels these days.

    Attached Files:

  10. P95Carry

    P95Carry Moderator Emeritus

    Had some useful info on a thread i posted recently and - funds allowing - have pretty much decided to go for .223 ...... seems like a great cal to choose....... and i I reload too .. that helps further.
  11. martin

    martin New Member

    The classic barrel is the 45 Colt/410 shotgun barrel. I had one of those in 10 inch years ago and it was a handful shooting 410 gauge shells. Not very accurate though for the 45 Colt.

    My 44 Magnum Super 14 barrel and .22 rimfire barrels were incredibly accurate. I would go with one of those if I was buying today.
  12. Hand_Rifle_Guy

    Hand_Rifle_Guy New Member


    You can use 125-grainers for varminting, or Remington Accelerators, albeit with questionable accuracy. Speer Plinkers are supposed to good for that also.

    It was the concept of this gun that got me into Hand Rifles in the first place.

    I still don't own one. They cost too much, and I can't get 'em new here anyhow. Stupid state.
  13. Jeeper

    Jeeper New Member

    There are a ton of wildcats if you reload. If you dont then teh 30-30 is good and cheap. The 357 is always a nice round. 22 hornet is nice also.
  14. tex_n_cal

    tex_n_cal New Member

    For nothing bigger than deer, I'd suggest the 7x30 waters. If you must go bigger, then I'd say .375 Winchester or .45-70, both of which were made in Contender barrels. I never tried the .35 Remington, but it should be a good choice, too.

    I would avoid buying used barrels, unless they are Bulberry or T/C custom shop make - T/C barrels did vary a lot in quality and some were downright awful in accuracy.
  15. Okiecruffler

    Okiecruffler New Member

    The .444 Marlin will take down most anything you'd want to face with a pistol and check how well your fillings were put in.
  16. gamegod86

    gamegod86 New Member

    My dad has an Encore (pretty much the same as the Contender) that has a 30-06 barrel on it.

    It makes about a 2 foot fireball out the muzzle:D Fun to shoot...the only thing anybody has been able to say after a shot is "D***!"

    He has a long eye relief Leupold scope on it, and a over the shoulder bandolero style holster with about 25 rounds on it.

    It's an attention getter.

    Think it's OK for Concealed Carry?:evil:

  17. Travis McGee

    Travis McGee New Member

    In my novel "Enemies Foreign and Domestic" the female protagonist uses a Contender in .223.

    She rides a motorcycle, it gives her rifle accuracy in a dayback portable package.
  18. SASS#23149

    SASS#23149 Active Member

    for pure outright FUN,and wide-eyed looks at the range,go 45-70!!!
    BUT DON'T go beyond minimum loads the first time out.Seeing a 14 inch T/C go straight up w/the first trigger pull is fun to watch,but not fun to do.! :)
    I got terribel accuracy w/lead bullets though,so stuck with jacketed.
    They are on fun gun.!!!
  19. Hal

    Hal New Member

    Well, I guess it's safe to assume with a handle like SASS#, you're into old timey things huh?:D
    You might want to have a look at paper patching those lead .45/70 rounds like the old timers did.
  20. stevelyn

    stevelyn New Member

    My first choice would be .22 Hornet then work my way up through the calibers from there.

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