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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Do any of you hunt big game with a handgun? I have a .44 Ruger Bisley that has been a safe queen for the past 20 years. If I draw a deer tag I am considering this an option. It would be a challenge (for me anyway). I suppose I could carry a rifle and the hogleg, and if opportunity presents itself I could use the handgun. Thoughts?
 

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I've been hunting with a handgun now for over 20 years off and on. I have used the .44 mag, and .357 mag in revolvers. Then comes my TC Contender in .30 and 357 Herrett and 7-30 Waters. I have taken everything from javelina in Arizona to bull elk in Colorado. It can be additive and a lot of fun.
 

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Do any of you hunt big game with a handgun? I have a .44 Ruger Bisley that has been a safe queen for the past 20 years. If I draw a deer tag I am considering this an option. It would be a challenge (for me anyway). I suppose I could carry a rifle and the hogleg, and if opportunity presents itself I could use the handgun. Thoughts?
I do some handgunning. I never could hit anything past 50 yards with the Ruger sights. I prefer a more target-type sight that's stock on the S&W wheel guns.

All my hunting revolvers have factory trigger jobs

My eyesight is not all that good so I try to practice a lot, 25 and 75 yards. I try my best to use a rangefinder and 75 yards is my limit with a 44 mag. My other go-to hunting revolver is a 460 S&W and it is deadly out to 150 yards. I practice with it at 50 and 150 yards.

I approach my handgun hunting in the same manner as I do for Bow Hunting; stealth, the wind, no movement and clean close range kills. I've been carrying and trying to use a monopod shooting stick these days.

My SIL developed some good loads for his 44 Bisley; one mild, another kinda hot, and they both work pretty good. My grandson used the mild loads on cottontails awhile back and I was impressed. So I have some good recipes for the Ruger Bisley and other 44 mags I could share with you privately.

Good luck. Keep us posted.
 

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In the 'ol days i killed a buck or two with the Clint Eastwood 44 mag.
They do go straight down.
WyoGoob is the King of handgun hunting !!!
Kind words, thank you.

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I have used my Ruger Super Blackhawk Hunter on a few hunts. Back in the day, (several days ago) when I shot a lot more than i do now and I managed to kill a nice mulie with it. The range was a lot further than I will admit. A 300 grain Hornady XTP is quite effective.
 

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I should also say that since I am now officially a senior citizen hunter I have a hard time getting my eyes to focus on three things at one time. On my Contender barrels they all carry a handgun scope which really helps this old guy out when it comes time to put a bullet into a animal.

Here is the results of this years javelina hunt
 

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I've always thought it would be cool to do a handgun hunt. I'm from AZ and I always wanted to do the javelina handgun hunt. Someday I'll get around to it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
I do some handgunning. I never could hit anything past 50 yards with the Ruger sights. I prefer a more target-type sight that's stock on the S&W wheel guns.
I don't think the sights are too terrible on my Ruger Bisley. Front ramp with adjustable rear. I haven't shot this gun in years, so I would definitely need to get some practice before attempting to hunt anything with it. The good news is I have been finding .44 ammo that is reasonably priced again.
 

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I settled a very long time ago on two powders for my 44 mag reloads. For light and practice loads I use Unique and cast 240 grain lead bullets and for full power loads I use H110 with Speer 240 gr jacketed bullets.
 

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I also have two loads, a practice load and a hot load. The practice load is 7.5 grains of Red Dot with a 240 grain cast bullet and a hot load is the classic 24 grains of W296 and the same 240 grain bullet. In my Ruger Bisley Hunter, the practice loads are 1100 fps and the hot loads are 1550 fps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have only shot factory loads, usually Winchester, PMC or Sellier & Bellot all in 240 gr. soft point. Do you guys have a favorite factory load?
 

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I settled a very long time ago on two powders for my 44 mag reloads. For light and practice loads I use Unique and cast 240 grain lead bullets and for full power loads I use H110 with Speer 240 gr jacketed bullets.
This is exactly what I use, expect XTPs instead of spear bullets. I killed a Whitetail doe last season with my SW 44 mag at 96 yards, first shot was through the ribs but she was a tough doe and required a follow up head shot.

You have to practice a lot to be proficient with a handgun, especially with open sights. To me "a lot" means once a week for two months before the season. I have learned to use my shooting sticks with my handgun and incorporate it into my grip using my left hand. This is shooting from my knees. I am confident with my sticks out to 110 yards. The shooting sticks really extends the range for me. Off hand I am only good to 40 yards. I am not too much better resting the gun off my knees in the sitting position as I don't find that position very comfortable. I consider 5 out of 6 shots in 10" circle as my yardstick. After lot's of trial and error I would really suggest kneeling down with shooting sticks, its very practical for hunting purposes and takes very little time to get in position.

I had a trigger job done on my smith and I really enjoy it and would suggest most handgun hunters get it done--My smith is an extremely accurate handgun if I do my part. I owned a ruger once and won't buy one again, I found them clunky and overbuilt. Smith & Wesson are the cats meow, they are the benchmark of wheelguns, of course I drive Toyota trucks and run pointers so maybe I'm off balance ;-)
 

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My Hunter likes the 300 grain XTP over more H110 than I care to admit, seated to the longest over-all length allowed by the cannelures. It chronographs at around 1350 fps.
 

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My Hunter likes the 300 grain XTP over more H110 than I care to admit, seated to the longest over-all length allowed by the cannelures. It chronographs at around 1350 fps.
whoa

I do 300s with 800x but I can't hit anything with them.

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I also have two loads, a practice load and a hot load. The practice load is 7.5 grains of Red Dot with a 240 grain cast bullet and a hot load is the classic 24 grains of W296 and the same 240 grain bullet. In my Ruger Bisley Hunter, the practice loads are 1100 fps and the hot loads are 1550 fps.
Does this not change your point of impact? do you have to resight when you are ready to hunt?
 
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