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Thread: Favorite deer hunting caliber

  1. #11
    Dogs Like Him versifier's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    New Hampshire


    I grab my .308 90% of the time. It will do everything I could wish for with cast of jacketed to as great a range as I can still see clearly, but there is no practical difference in performance between it and the .303 you are now using. (If you are going where the ranges are longer, borrow your brother's rifle. ) If I were just starting out today, I would probably go with something a little easier on the shoulder for longer sessions at the bench, (maybe in .25 or 6.5mm) but I didn't have the patience for a lot of testing when I was younger. I can understand you wanting something lighter to carry around all day than a SMLE, but the truth is, you may be hard put to beat its accuracy with a new rifle. I am not one to be at all impressed with the newest this or the latest that, and most of the rifles I buy are used (except Contender Carbine barrels). I am awfully partial to Mauser actions, but I'm happy with just about any decent bolt for a deer rifle, as long as it's accurate. Find one with a stock that properly fits you first, then worry about the chambering later. You can handload, so factory offerings mean little or nothing. The better it fits you, the more you are likely to practice with it. You could have a .458mag that will shoot one hole groups, but it will beat you up so bad that you can't pass the pieplate test at 50yds offhand and will end up gathering dust until you can find a sucker to sell it to. I would rather something more user friendly that will come to the range to be shot regularly and know that when I pick it up, I can hit what I'm aiming at.
    "Stand your ground.
    Do not fire unless fired upon.
    But if they mean to have a war let it begin here."
    - Capt. Parker, Lexington Militia, April 19, 1775

  2. #12
    Great Master kodiak1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Alberta Territory


    25-06 with a 120 Grains of leaded Stopping power has worked extremely well on all deer.

    Love to Live, Live to Shoot!
    Live by the Gun...Die by the Gun...

  3. #13
    Great Master Bullshop Junior's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005


    Never have had a chance to shoot a deer... But the old 06 will take down a moose just fine and a moose is alot bigger then a deer!!!

    (Reminds me of what I do to my brothers)

  4. #14
    I love it mild, not wild The_Montanan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    NW Montana


    I like the ol 45-70, never hear a complaint from anything I ever hit with it

    From the 300-gr JSP, 405-gr JSP, 405-gr RNFP, 500-gr Elk Buster

  5. #15


    You might try a 7mm-08 or even a .270.....Somehow that 7mm cal. works magic.......

    Warning! Does NOT play well with others!

  6. #16
    GunLoad Trainee
    Join Date
    Mar 2008


    Let us know what you decide to go with. I am interested and excited for you and your new (up comming)purchase

  7. #17


    Hey What About The 7mm-08 Big Enough To Get The Job Done On Any Thing Maybe Except Bears Moose And Long Distent Elk Thay Are Light Easy To Carry Low Kick
    I Learned Along Time Ago That You Carry A Rifle More Than You Shoot It So
    Get A Light One It6 Makes No Diffance What Cal. Youuse And What Range You Shoot Em. You Cant Kill Em.past Dead

  8. #18


    [QUOTE=drklynoon;4749]I am wondering what every one feels is the best caliber for north american deer. My brother uses a 300 win mag which I consider to be a bit of insanity but it's his shoulder. Right now I'm usin a 303 british but am considering upgrading before next winter. I am leaning towards a 30-06 just becuase of it's versatility in reloading and use. Maybe the .308. Then again I doubt I'd need anything bigger than a .243. So what do you guys think?[/QUOTE

    The swamp bottom ground I hunt requires acuracy of 75 yards... My longest shot was 33 yards..closest was 10 feet... so my favorite caliber right now is my 58 flintlock or my 58 Navy Zouve Replica.... Hit something square with a pure lead 57 caliber ball and it will not go far... hopefully towards the tractor trail.

  9. #19

    Default deer cartridge?

    There's probably no one topic discussed more around the campfire than- Whats the best deer cartridge/bullet/gun?

    I guess anything that will cleanly kill a deer, at the range it is shot. Bullet selection is also important. I've seen quite a bit of too much gun used and seen a few instances of not enough gun. I've seen too many instances of poor marksmanship and shooting too far! Too much gun/wrong bullet would include big fast bullet that blows up a lot of tissue... makes a mess of the animal. Too little would be small/slower bullet that doesn't do enough damage or penetrate enough for 100% animal recovery after shot. Good calibers abound for my choices.... .270 Win, '06, 308 Win, 280 Rem, 7-08, 7X57, etc. Tough to pick one!
    Last edited by 405; 07-17-2008 at 04:43 PM.
    "You can't have no idea how little I care"- Montelius Walsh

  10. #20


    Well where I hunt I cannot see past 70 yards so my getting older Navy arms Zouave 58 cal. muzzle loader usind patched round ball (.57)is my weapon of choice. No deer has ever been lost and so far complete penetration.. even got two with one shot once. Two does standing side by side at 32 yards... Filled my 2 doe tag with one wollop... But if I had a field to shoot across any one of my 30-06 rifles (military) would sure do the trick.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
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