How much Gun for Big Game? or How Little!

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BS

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Lets talk about guns for Elk and Moose and such.

This is not about my gun is bigger than yours.

Just think of how many deer have been shot with a modern 12 ga Foster slug, millions?

A 1 ounce slug at 1600 fps.

Now, would you shoot a Elk or a Moose with a 1 ounce slug at 1600 fps.

I have seen deer shot with a 410 slug and drop. 1/5 oz at 1800 fps. [ Spine shot] With smaller gun, you have to be more careful and pick your spot.

Just trying to state that smaller guns work.

I have put a 54 cal ball clear thru the lungs of an elk, broadside at 40 yards. He didn't drop, but ran down hill out of the thick crap to die on the edge of a meadow. In the shade. With a second shot to the back of the head. 95FFF and RB. 32" barrel.

My buddie double lunged a huge cow, she staggered for 40 or 50 yards. 54, RB 120FF at close range. TC Renagade....and 2 others. [elk]

So 54s work on Elk!

So on the up scale we have 58-62-69 and 73s....and tweeners.........and bigger.

Are the y too big? I don't think so.

Thoughts?
 

andy52

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As Grimord says it's about shot placement not caliber. a Grizzly bear has been taken down with nothing more than a .22lr, not something I'd want to face one with but it was taken down with one shot behind the ear.
 

Rudyard

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At Mile 0 at Timber creek on the Alcan highway is a huge Timber Wolf slain by a trappers 22 & I dropped two Mule Deer with a similar rifle , but I wouldn't say either case was ideal just expedient . I once faced a Bull Mouse with a 451 ML loaded with 15 grains & a round ball ( Wanting Grouse ect for the pot ) . Had it a bayonet I could have stabbed it as I looked up its nose. But I managed to talk it out of getting serious with me .Much to my relief I needn't add ! .
Rudyard
 

tenngun

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Bear can kill you a long time after it’s dead, so I would never voluntarily go after Griz, Brown, or polar with out some back up.
Otherwise I don’t think North America has any animal a .54 isn’t plenty for. Though I would want my .62 for bulwinkle, just because moose with a TFC seems fitting.
I agree with Hanshi, there ain’t nothing that is too much gun. I wouldn’t feel bad about going after a little tiny deer 60-70 lbs with my .62.
 

SOLANCO

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I have not the bp experience to comment on bp cartridges or loads.

But in unmentionables the venerable 6mm Swedish has taken every big game species on the earth. I regard that as testimony on the capability of hunters rather than the cartridge. Still, we have loads with the ballistics to kill anything that has not yet landed from an alien spacecraft.

Sometimes, at the range, it is good just to shoot the mortal hell out of your ten rings and ignore the babbler who wants you to try the latest miracle load.
 

excess650

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In an issue of Muzzleloader Magazine, an article about Forsyth rifling, Ross Seyfried wrote that his Purdy .66 hit (Roosevelt) elk as hard as anything he had shot them with including his 340 Weatherby Mag. His load was 1oz roundball at 1300fps, IIRC.
 

BS

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excess650 if you find time to see what issue it was, I will order one and read.

I have a in project 20 bore with Forsyth rifling, 104 twist.
 

Rudyard

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Rudyard, it should not even take a rifle too kill a BULL MOUSE just stomp him.
I see the joke, my printing error . Though I blame these E machines as their allways printing letters wrong & their spellings frightfull .
Regards Rudyard

PS. Re Forsyth's rifling that shows dedication. I bought a double 12 bore rifle on that plan in India years ago it was made by Sam'l & Chas Smith, but it was well worn and I didn't load it that heavy so with ball I didn't get reliable shooting but the 2 ounce shell was largley random. hardly a fair trial I hope you get good results Biggest Game I ever shot was a Black Bear 2& a half dram 2 F and a 500 grain Sharpe's Bailey bullet from a 451 MM made from an unused Martini Henry barrel that at the time went begging as no one wanted them . Same rifle as with the Brer Moose episode, Both in BC Canada . R
 
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excess650

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excess650 if you find time to see what issue it was, I will order one and read.

I have a in project 20 bore with Forsyth rifling, 104 twist.
That magazine has been out of print for quite a few years. I'll see if I can find that particular, but I recall a Dall Sheep on the cover. Seyfried's experiments were with a couple of 20 bore barrels with different rifling twists and prompted me to order a similar barrel in 1-90" (?) twist.
 
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SDSmlf

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Just think of how many deer have been shot with a modern 12 ga Foster slug, millions?

A 1 ounce slug at 1600 fps.
Accuracy and resulting performance of 12 gauge Foster slugs are the reasons I abandoned the 12 gauge shotgun for deer hunting many years ago. Basically a lead badminton shuttlecock. Centerfire pistols and muzzleloaders with roundballs, 45 caliber and above were legal options where I hunted in New York. I have taken a lot of deer with both pistol and muzzleloader over the years. Haven’t used a Foster slug since about 1980. Personal opinion, the Foster slug is not a good measuring stick.
 

BS

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Accuracy and resulting performance of 12 gauge Foster slugs are the reasons I abandoned the 12 gauge shotgun for deer hunting many years ago. Basically a lead badminton shuttlecock. Centerfire pistols and muzzleloaders with roundballs, 45 caliber and above were legal options where I hunted in New York. I have taken a lot of deer with both pistol and muzzleloader over the years. Haven’t used a Foster slug since about 1980. Personal opinion, the Foster slug is not a good measuring stick.
It is about energy, not a accuracy.

A 1.1/4 ounce Federal foster slug at 1520 fps produces 2806 of muzzle energy. [12 ga]

My 12 bore muzzleloader with a 27" barrel will do 1475 with 220 grains of 2F and a 560 grain ball. A longer barrel would be very equal.

I only use 125FF. Plenty of power.

So I think a foster slug is an equal comparison. Maybe not the best........but what is better?

Everyone should be made to shoot them, they would have a whole new appreciation for muzzle loaders.[smooth bore and foster slugs]
 

SDSmlf

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It is about energy, not a accuracy.
Have seen too many three shot groups with Foster slugs with one missing a 12” target at 50 yards to disregard accuracy. A shot in the guts or leg of an animal just isn’t good enough for me. But we don’t use Foster Slugs in our muzzleloaders so calling BS on direction this thread is taking.
 

The Crisco Kid

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We did some penetration tests with factory slugs vs. wheelweight round balls in shotguns both 12 and 20. The round balls out penetrated the slugs by at least 3 times when fired into the end of a block of spruce stovewood. That told us all we needed to know about what load to carry. Don't know why the same wouldn't apply to our muzzleloaders.
 

Eutycus

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Bear can kill you a long time after it’s dead, so I would never voluntarily go after Griz, Brown, or polar with out some back up.
Otherwise I don’t think North America has any animal a .54 isn’t plenty for. Though I would want my .62 for bulwinkle, just because moose with a TFC seems fitting.
I agree with Hanshi, there ain’t nothing that is too much gun. I wouldn’t feel bad about going after a little tiny deer 60-70 lbs with my .62.
How can a dead bear kill you? Food poisoning maybe? This is not a smart a** question, I'd genuinely like to know, this is not bear country down here in South Texas and I've never had an encouner with one.
 

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