357 magnum for deer?

Discussion in 'General Rifle Discussion' started by old fart, Mar 10, 2012.

  1. old fart

    old fart New Member

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    i have myself selling several guns lately and one was my deer rifle. i have been trying to figure out how to get another cheaper gun and ammo. i came up with the nef 357 magnum, i've owned nef's in the past and they have been good guns. since i have a 357 magnum revolver a 357 rifle makes sense to me as i can just get one kind of ammo and save money. i hunt in kentucky woods where my shots will be 100yds or less. so will a 357 magnum be a good whitetail deer gun at 100yds or less? thanks
     
  2. cottontop

    cottontop Guest

    It should work fine for deer as long as you don't try to extend its range and you are careful of good shot placement.
    cottontop
     

  3. jpattersonnh

    jpattersonnh Active Member

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    Try and keep your shots at 50 yards max. You need to think about the velosity and energy that it will carry downrange to penetrate and harvest cleanly.
     
  4. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    What they said up there^^^. For deer, you want a good hard HEAVY solid, not a 125 gr JHP. You want penetration. I deer hunt Eastern Whitetails with a .357 revolver- BUT- 10 inch bbl, 50 yds would be a long shot where I am hunting, and my handloads are 200 gr flat tip. Heart/ lung shot, never had one travel more than 25 yds.

    In a carbine, should be fine at right range, right ammo. DO check your state hunting laws. They can be all over the place.
     
  5. JTJ

    JTJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have an H&R synthetic handi rifle in 357. The minimum factory load I would use is the 158 gr JSP which is about 1850 fps in the rifle. A better choice might be the 140 gr Hornady Leverlution which should be about 2000 fps and good to 100 yards.
     
  6. RustyShackleford101

    RustyShackleford101 New Member

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    It should be fine, but If it were me, I'd move up to a .44.
     
  7. jeepejeep

    jeepejeep New Member

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    I took a deer cleanly with a Hi-Point 9540 Carbine at about 35 yards. As long as you're close (I'd say no more than 50 yards) and hit cleanly in the heart/lung area with a 180 gr. soft point, you should be good for a quick, clean kill.
     
  8. RustyShackleford101

    RustyShackleford101 New Member

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    Has anybody here hunted Deer with a mares leg in 357 or 44?
     
  9. Tackleberry1

    Tackleberry1 New Member

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    White Tail are very close in body mass and tissue density to humans and the .357 mag seems to work pretty well on 2 legged vermin so why not?

    I'd pay attention to C3's load recommendations and go for it.

    Tack
     
  10. Werminator

    Werminator Member

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    Rusty, my limited experience with the mares leg platform lends me to believe they are mostly a novelty item. I can not get comfortable sighting and shouldering these firearms and that makes it hard to get a consistent sight plane. That said, I am probably going to look at adding a lever action .44mag to my collection, but more of a true carbine length or so. The mares leg has such a short stock it falls in between a rifle and a pistol and I personally (and this is only my opinion, I respect others who may differ) feel it is a truly lacking platform in terms of practical application. For my money, I would rather invest in a little more traditional, widespread, and proven platform.
     
  11. masterPsmith

    masterPsmith New Member

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    Nothing wrong with the .357 mag for deer. Have taken a few myself with it. I use hot loaded 158gr hard cast SWC out of a 6" S&W mod-27. I also try to keep shots within 50 yards.
     
  12. tomingreeneco

    tomingreeneco New Member

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    I have a couple of lever guns in .357. Works fine for deer under 100 yards. All of my kills have been at 50 yards or less. If you have to use factory ammo check out Buffalo Bore ammo for the best .357 cartridges to use in a rifle. If you re-load work up a hot load with a JHP. I use H-110 powder 15.3m gr., magnum primer with a 158gr JHP for deer.
     
  13. The_Kid

    The_Kid New Member

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    I hunt with a S&W 686 357mag, My last deer shot, I was using the Hornady 158gr HP-XTP with a velocity of 1050fps. The deer was a 200lbs doe shot at 65 yards. The bullet entered between ribs, went through the heart and lungs then broke a rib on exit. The bullet wasn't recovered but the expansion seemed minimal, the exit hole was about 5/8inches. The deer was already running, ran about 50 yards after being shot, then collapsed.

    I switched to using the 180gr HP-XTP at the same velocity. I calculate my effective range differently than most others do.


    Here is a calculator that may help.
    Hornady HITS calculator