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I dont get the big GUNS?

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by txcookie, Nov 21, 2012.

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  1. RevGeo

    RevGeo Member

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    I guess I don't understand why anyone would be concerned with what somebody else shoots. As long as someone's gun is legal for the game they are after it's their business, in my opinion.
    I was raised by a gun nut - they called them 'cranks' back then - and I grew up shooting many, many different guns in many different chamberings because the old man was constantly buying, selling and trading guns with the other cranks he knew and shot with. I've shot and seen shot a lot of animals, large and small. I am no expert but my opinion is that any rifle chambering considered a 'big game' round shows pretty much the same results from a well placed bullet. Poor performance is the fault of the shooter, generally, not the rifle or round.
    Hunting is a sport for the vast majority of us. If we were totally dependent on animals we killed we would probably be raising them as livestock or using deadfalls, tiger traps, booby traps, deer drives with our neighbors etc.
    Nowadays I hunt big game with a 30-40AI built on a single shot 98 Mauser action that I inherited from my old man, the gun crank. Ballistically it's pretty much a 30-06 but I can load it down to 300 Sav or standard 30-40 speeds. I have to be careful with my shot placement (as do all single shot hunters) and have turned down shots at animals due to range limitations, poor shot angle and pure gut feelings that the shot would not be right. Anybody who hunts or has hunted with a muzzle loader knows what I'm talking about.
    Since I am practicing my sport as I see fit I have little problem tuning down a shot and so I don't see a need for a .375H&H to drive a 270gr bullet into the vitals of an elk from any angle, personally.
    BUT - If somebody else wants to hunt that way and wants to shoot whatever gun they choose then I'm all like 'Cool!' Same thing if some guy wants to sit in a tree like a bowhunter and pop his deer with a handgun at 20 feet.
    Buy whatever the hell you want and have fun shooting it. This is supposed to be about fun. If practicality were that much a part of it I probably wouldn't do it. Cartridges and calibers don't make bad shots. The guy pulling the trigger does.
     
  2. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    If you ever compared the cases, you realize that the .240 Weatherby is really a .243-06.
    At the ridiculously high prices for empty .240 Weatherby cases it would make sense to start out with a wildcat .243-06 if that's the cartridge that tickles your fancy.
     
  3. Ankeny

    Ankeny Member

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    I suppose there is some merit in those thoughts. However, as a hunting guide I do give some consideration to what our clients shoot, and how well they shoot under pressure. One of my clients shot this deer last month. [​IMG]
    When we spotted the deer, it was at 300+ yards with a corn field on the south and the border of the hunting unit not far to the north. It would be nice to kill the deer in it's tracks. The hunter is a good shot, the distance was not bothersome to him, and he had plenty of rifle in his hands in the form of a 7mm Rem Mag. No wind, decent rest, no worries.

    Next year it looks like a .22 centerfire will be legal to hunt deer with in Wyoming. I know I would be very uncomfortable allowing a hunter to take that shot with a pip-squeek poodle shooter like a .222 or a .223. I guess I just don't little guns. :)
     
  4. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    The nut behind the trigger.....:)
     
  5. jdh

    jdh Member

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    Need got nothing to do with it.
     
  6. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    I admit that I shy away from big boomers for two reasons: the components add up to much more $$ and the main reason is I'm recoil sensitive. I don't shoot well with a gun that hammers me.
     
  7. MCgunner

    MCgunner Member

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    I've been thinking of BIG lately as in .45-70 or .454 Casull (Rossi 92, I like my .357 version). I love the way my .50 caliber front stuffers kill game DRT, yet you can eat right up to the hole. I'll probably just keep hunting with front stuffers, though. :D They're neat. I look on them as .50-90 Sharps without the case, especially my CVA Wolf with scope mounted. It's kinda too modern to play Daniel Boone with. :D
     
  8. RevGeo

    RevGeo Member

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    Ankeny,
    Why doesn't your outfit put minimum caliber or chambering limits on it's customer's choice of weapon? Probably lose a bunch of 'em, I imagine. Maybe the various fish and game depts. that are looking at legalizing .22CF cartridges have the same problem. .22CF guns are mighty popular these days and lots of deer are killed with them.
    I know that here in Idaho (any center fire is legal) there is a lot of worry in the F&G about the recent lack of non-resident tags being purchased.
    That has nothing to do with caliber restrictions but F&G still needs the $$.
    How about proof of shooting ability with the chosen gun? Some outfitters refuse to book older or out of shape hunters for strenuous sheep hunts etc.
    Perhaps having the client shoot a pie pan at 100 yards with his chosen gun? Offhand...
     
  9. ricebasher302

    ricebasher302 Member

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    I think a lot of it has to do with compensating for imperfect shots. Allowing yourself a margin of error in case things don't go perfectly. I've killed elk with well-placed lung shots with a .243 Win, but I don't believe this caliber provides any room for error. Last year, I took a bull elk at a sharp quartering away angle with a 350 gr bullet from a .45-70. The elk never took a step. I would not have even attempted the shot with a .243. I knew the 350 grain bullet would penetrate to the offside lung. I can say with nearly 100 percent certainty that a light bullet would not have achieved that kind of penetration and would have resulted in a wounded elk.

    I would not feel undergunned with a .270, but I am a proponent of premium (or just really heavy) bullets on large game such elk, moose and bear. Most any game bullet is adequate for deer.

    My experience with many (not all) hunters using very large magnums is that they expect instant kills. Just this season, one of my elk hunting party found a freshly killed mule deer buck. After several hours, he happened upon the guy responsible. The guy said he had shot but missed because the deer ran off unharmed. He had shot the buck in the lungs with a .30-378 Wby. Mag. and assumed it would have dropped where it stood. In my mind this kind of irresponsibility is unacceptable, and frequently goes hand-in-hand with ultra large magnums.

    However, if an experienced, responsible hunter chooses to use one, that is okay by me.
     
  10. X-Rap

    X-Rap Member

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    So many of these threads seem to claim some almost inherent inaccuracy and poor hunting ability that accompanies a larger caliber cartridge so I try to pay them little mind. There also is some explosive, meat ruining implication that I have found to be absolutely false.
    I have some news for those that let big guns get under your skin, I'll go out on a limb and say Most commited shooters and hunters who use a magnum also own a few guns that shoot the smaller rounds and can probably shoot them quite well.
     
  11. Onward Allusion

    Onward Allusion Member

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    Through tens of thousands of years perhaps, but the last 50 years???
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2012
  12. splattergun

    splattergun Member

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    As a western hunter, I can't help but chuckle at the easterners' view that anything over 100 yards is 'extreme' and requires something in the category of a 40mm recoilless rifle. :rolleyes:

    I have never been dissappointed in the performance of my .30-06, having taken a few mule deer around 450 yards, and a couple elk around 350 yards. All 1 shot kills that fell within 25 yards. I have used a 7mm-08 for muleys out to 300 yards, same result. Nothing wrong with that cartridge.

    The only way I can see myself needing a magnum for what/where I hunt would be for longer ranges, where a 7mm mag, with its better ballistics and bullet BC would shine. But that's not gonna happen for me in the foreseeable future.
     
  13. BoilerUP

    BoilerUP Member

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    I'm a recoil sissy.

    Nearly everybody I know hunts with magnums...7RM is far and away the most popular with a couple other guys using 300WSMs. And this is in Kentucky, in hardwoods, where the "long shot" is 100yd unless you happen to be hunting a field.

    I hunt with a 260 Remington, as it kills deer just as dead with WAY less recoil than any magnum.

    After using my 223AI to good effect yesterday (as my brother was using the 260), I might start hunting more with it...the 80gr A-Max killed deer just as dead as my 260 or other hunters' magnums.

    I'm proficient enough shooting the "little" 223AI that I'd have no problem slipping that 80gr A-Max into that beautiful mulie's heart at 300yd...or into its lower neck/spine junction for a bang/flop DRT.

    Shot placement of a quality bullet is way, WAY more important than bullet diameter or weight.

    Did I mention I'm a recoil sissy?
     
  14. DM~

    DM~ Member

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    Yes, of course i know that. Did you know thar .240 cases can be made from 30-06???

    At the time i had Parker make up and install the bbl. for me, i didn't care what the cases cost as i was a gun dealer and bought a BUNCH of them for cost. I'm still using those same cases.

    "IF" i was starting over today, with the same needs, i'd build the same rifle, only chambered for 6mm Remington instead. I do like my .240 though as over the years it's done quite well for me, and my great nephue took HIS first deer with it about a week ago,

    [​IMG]

    But that's NOT the first deer the .240 took! lol

    DM
     
  15. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    I have had a .240 Weatherby Mark V for over 40 years. I killed my biggest antelope with it back in 1975, 15 4/8", at over 400 yards. I like the cartridge but only had 80 cases for it. I switched to a .257 Roberts Ackley Imp. 20 years ago. I never regretted it.

    Congrats to your nephew. Nice deer.
     
  16. ricebasher302

    ricebasher302 Member

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    In my experience, speed is what causes explosive damage. This is exacerbated if the bullet used is too fragile for the application. I've seen some pretty nasty carnage from .243's, .25-06's, .270's and 7mm RM's. While many magnums are fast, their large size is not necessarily so much of a factor.

    I hate processing meat-shot critters and have yet to encounter a situation where I absolutely needed to anchor an animal with a shoulder shot. I've had great luck with neck shots and head shots as long as you're able to make the shot cleanly. Blowing a jaw off is NOT something I wanna do, but if I wanted an animal to drop where is stood, I'd be thinking neck/head before shoulder.
     
  17. DeepSouth

    DeepSouth Member

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    Personally I like the big calibers, don't really know why but I do. So as a result I tend to hunt with them. That said there not "needed" for anything in AL, I've killed more with a 243 than anything else. But nowadays I hunt less (just take the kids) and carry a bigger gun.
     
  18. Lloyd Smale

    Lloyd Smale Member

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    amen to that
     
  19. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Member

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    That is subject to one's own perspective. I take the other position as I believe the magnumites are more annoying(at least to me). Magnums for long range shots?-Yes. For dangerous game?-Absolutely! For whitetail deer?-What is the point?
     
  20. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

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    Off hand, I'd say the main reason behind this is the never ending quest to eek out a little bit more performance, to improve on one aspect or another of an existing cartridge, to develop a new cartridge, to stroke an ego, to suit a specific purpose, or any number of other such factors.

    I don't think that these new "big guns" are really that much of a big deal, with respect to their relative performance compared to the ones you've mentioned. Rather, I look at it like this: it simply broadens the market and gives us more choices to choose from, based on whatever we perceive our own needs and wants to be.

    You will certainly get no argument from me that you can take anything you want with a 270 or 30-06.

    The ultimate bottom line question that needs to be asked is "Do the existing 'older' rifles/cartridges do the job you need them to do?"

    If the answer to that is "yes", then who really cares if someone else out there thinks some other rifle/cartridge combination is better, newer or not? Arguing that is like arguing what round is 'best' for personal protection...everybody's got an opinion, but if they all get the job done, it's really a moot point.

    Besides...for the types of rifles/cartridges you're talking about, it's far more about shot placement than anything else. From the perspective of large game, being hit with a 30-06 or a new-fangled "magnum" makes no difference.

    :):)
     
  21. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    For the guy who wants to only buy only 1 gun to hunt world wide a 300 mag makes a lot of sense. There are only 2-3 game animals on the planet that it is unsuited for, a few that it would be borderline on, but smaller guns have killed everything on the planet.

    With the wide selection of bullets you can choose one that will punch through very large animals at close to moderate range or choose another to shoot flat enough with enough energy for large game such as elk at quite long range.

    Recoil is manageable, actually quite a bit less than some non-magnum rounds often praised by the "anti-magnum crowd". And it can always be loaded down to 308 power and recoil levels for whitetails at close range.
     
  22. Andrew Leigh

    Andrew Leigh Member

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    As a relatively new hunter and rifle owner (2 years now) I see owning a rifle as one based on a need to do a job. Your first rifle, and if indeed this will be your only rifle, must be seen as a tool. For me it is a tool I need to use on the African continent.

    So my first rifle ended up being the "adjustable wrench", the tool that will fit a variety of situations. In my case it was the 30-06 as this would allow me to shoot from Springbuck (huge overkill) through to Eland (where good bullets and premium shot placement) would be imperative for ethical kills. And as a handloader would provide opportunity for tailoring loads. This calibre would be fine for 95% of all my hunts, as would other calibre's it must be said. (.270, 300 Win mag, 7mm Rem Mag, 7X57 etc.). It just so happens that with the limited experience I had at the time of purchase that this was the calibre I selected, it was a close call between the .270, 7X57, .308 and the 30-06.

    As time has progressed I have found that I am actually over gunned for the smaller antelope / buck species and that a smaller calibre would be better suited to the job of hunting Springbuck, Impala and Blesbuck. Plus my grandbuddies want to come shooting so the next tool for the toolbox was a 6.5X55mm. Again this could have been any of a number of calibres a .243, 6mm, .250. I just happened to fancy the classic 6.5mm and also being a hand loader this was a great calibre and I could exploit many possibilities while downloading for the grandbuddies until they were ready for full loads.

    Back to the OP. I also did not get the big guns thing but now I find myslef wanting a more specialist calibre on the upper end, specifically to take Eland with more confidence so calibres like the classic 9.3, .375 and perhaps the .300 Win Mag or the .338 may also be up for consideration.

    If I was afforded opportunity to hunt in Namibia or the central parts of South Africa where is is flat and long range shot are required then I would consider a 7mm Rem Mag, a .300 Win Mag etc.

    For me it is about fitness for purpose, for a job at hand. It is nice to have a toolbox full of tools so to speak. Varmint rifle, small antelope, large antelope, short range deer rifle, scatter gun etc etc.

    My next purchase will probably be a .375 H&H not for any testosterone based reason but simply as part of the process of equipping my tool box with the tools I require.

    Hope my odd analogy makes sense.
     
  23. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    Andrew, your reasoning is purpose-driven, which to me makes sense. What most of us old-timers joke about with the "magnum-itis" has to do with guys using magnums where the hunt is for whitetail deer which dress out around 100 pounds and are shot at 50 to 75 yards.

    And too many of them, apparently, take a cross-body shoulder shot and then complain about ruining meat. :D
     
  24. Jason_W

    Jason_W Member

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    In places where you're lucky to see one legal deer in a season, some ruined meat is better than no deer at all.

    That doesn't mean I'm in favor of taking absolutely stupid shots, but if you wait for the perfect angle, you'll likely have the same level deer hunting success that I do.
     
  25. Taurus 617 CCW

    Taurus 617 CCW Member

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    I currently use a 30-06 and have never considered moving to a larger cartridge beyond that. I have actually considered moving down to a .44 magnum lever action or a .243 Win. for deer.
     
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