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The Great Caliber Debate !!

9698 Views 54 Replies 18 Participants Last post by  tahoe2
Really suprised nobody has brought this up. It ALWAYS does on any hunting forum Ive ever been on. Sooooo here we go........................

I will start by pointing out many States/Countrys have rules that limit "or not" what size projectile may be used to take Deer. And lets for now limit it to WhiteTail (or an equivliant i.e. in Australia) as its the perdominant species the Majority on here hunt. I will give my thoughts first.

In Missouri its ANY CENTERFIRE cartridge.... No FMJ. Thats (as far as I know) .18 Bee - .50 BMG. Shotguns its .410 and up with slugs only. Black Powder is .40 cal for the minimun. Handguns is centerfire again and black Powder handguns .40 cal. And the best is......In my opinion.....

Any of the above. Reason....Its bullet placement that counts.

If you have one that you think is better, other than you just like it, and we all have our favorites, ........why is it better than the rest.
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I saw someone mention the .22 Magnum. When I lived in the country, the folks around our way used to call that a "poacher's rifle". Only the illegal jacklighters used them on deer.
My 22 Savage loves Aquila Super Maximum Hyper velocity ammo. 1750 FPS is the advertised velocity. I did some 50 yard shooting with it a few months ago. 3/8 x 1/2 inch holes and those were 10 shot groups. Plenty good for squirrels. My Marlin 60 loves Winchesters and Remington's best. Federals are next in line. In previous 60's all I used was Stingers. A 22 is very hard to beat if you can place your shots. My only centerfire rifle is my marlin 336-3030. I think if I had to pick a centerfire or a rimfire for my only rifle I would have to chose the 22 cal. Savage MKII FV. I have never had a more accurate rifle, and because it is a bolt action it can shoot any 22 out there. Most manufacturers try to steer customers away from hyper velocity ammo in their semi autos because of the cheap recoil springs and bumpers they install and sell after market. I am positive that if I had to use it to survive I could take down a deer or a hog. if I needed to defend myself with it, woe to the one who challenges my resolve.

.22 cal rimfire it is.
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Harrummfff , Being a " Marlin " forum , I suspect that out of that wrenchester 1894, the .30 wcf bullet will just bounce off a deer :rolleyes: Out of a Marlin it will just flat out kill them , gut them , and drag the deer home :cool:
Oh, you mean the 30-30. Of course.
Reading thru this post raised a question.
Where is Windy. Kinda miss that girl.
Beware of a person that has/uses only one gun. Chances are, they know how to use it.
I'm down to one center-fire rifle. Marlin 30-30 all the way. All that i need - all that I want. :p
My how things change.
Gave the Marlin 30-30 to my son in Alabama. May the 30-30 have a long and happy life. ;)
Now I have the 7.62X54R Mosin Nagant that I featured earlier in a project thread along with the 7-30 Waters Thompson Contender Carbine (also posted about) for Sunday Dress.
Variety is the spice of life.
Old thread, interesting. No one brought up the need to hunt with a 30 round semi-automatic modern sporting rifle in 5.56, maybe because Marlin never made one.

Where I grew up, deer hunting had archery, muzzleloader and shotgun seasons. No rifles. Where I live now, any centerfire rifle caliber.

I have taken deer with 12 guage slugs from my 870 and with 30-30 from a Winchester Model 55. I have a Marlin 1894 in .357, but will still grab the .30-30 to put the meat on the table.

Come to think of it, of 27 guns I have I have eaten something killed with 6 of them. Three different shotguns (deer, turkey, rabbit and pheasant) the .30-30 (deer) and two 22 rifles (rabbit and squirrel)
Here is my "Holy Grail" for Hunting

Victorian (Australia) Game Hunting Handbook

Check out Page 50 for calibers ect,
Humane dispatching of animals is what it's all about.

But basically a 270 Caliber Rifle is Minimum for Sambar Deer
and a 243 is minimum for a Hog Deer

the 270 is not really efficient for Sambar, a mate of mine recently took 5 shots, and 1 hrs tracking, after the first shot, go get a Stag, that's why I use a .338 or my favourite 375 H & H, as they both flatten Stags.

Nedless to say that the vast variety of Deer here can, and have been taken with smaller Caliber rifles, with well placed shots, but how often does that happen.
Some Calibers are over kill, and some are under kill.

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Winchester 70 ,270win

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Seven-Six-Two Millimeter

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06 overall, always find a box!

Sent from my iPhone using Marlin Forum
Theres not right or wrong answer here Each state has its laws that you must stay with in.Along with each hunter being sufficient with their caliber of choice being able to make a shot with placement in the vitals when that moment of truth arrives to make a quick humane kill and to be an ethical hunter.
.280 Rem does the job nicely. But, I prefer toting a .444.
.243/6MM minimum here, There`s no "best" caliber for anything....Besides a good shot placement with a .243 is better than a miss or flesh wound with a 30-06..If you can`t "HIT" with your favorite rifle it ain`t worth beans
.243/6MM minimum here, There`s no "best" caliber for anything....Besides a good shot placement with a .243 is better than a miss or flesh wound with a 30-06..If you can`t "HIT" with your favorite rifle it ain`t worth beans

Well said oldbrass.
AS far as placement goes, I know of 2 Buffalo taken with a 308 and a 270 now.
Personally I prefer the bigger caliber, as more often than not, things go pare_shaped.
Just My Opinion

Bigger (or heavier) is "almost" always better (IMO) except maybe when it comes to varmint shooting. However I don't always practice what I preach, but I do like heavy for caliber bullets.
In most cases I use .284 or 30 cal for Deer, .312 or .323 for Elk and .375 for Bear (Black). None of which are Magnums, I believe Magnums have their place, just not in my cabinet!
But moods and needs change all the time, and "Variety is the Spice of Life" :cool:
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