Originally Posted by hunter Joe
The only thing I can suggest is use the heaviest projectile you can find and don't shoot over 20 yards. IMHO you will lose too much energy after 20 yards to make an ethical kill.
With my handloads of H110/296 (same powder) and Beartooth 185 grain WFNGC bullets makes it to 1250fps out of a 4" barrel. The meplat or flat measures .280" across, the same as the original Keith .44 SWC. While the .44 may penetrate more due to its greater mass, there is only so much penetration needed on a whitetail deer. No one accuses the .44 Keith 250gr. of being inadequate for deer. Since both bullets have the same meplat and both will penetrate completely through any deer, the question becomes, how dead is dead.
The meplat, expanded or built into the bullet + velocity at impact, in is what damages tissue in penetration. I put little stock in energy figures, particularly since Foot/Pounds was developed to compare steam engines to horse power!
In the dawning years of the 20th century, firearms marketing types latched onto ft/lbs as a way to make the new faster smokeless rounds seem far more powerful than their big bore black powder predecessors. This is not to disparage the trajectory advantage of modern smokeless rounds.
If a 180 grain lead flat nose bullet fired at 1250fps from a .38-40 Winchester '73 carbine could drop a whitetail at 50 yards, so can a .357 revolver firing the same weight of lead at the same velocity!