Author Topic: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?  (Read 1809 times)

Ridgerunner665

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Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« on: June 11, 2017, 07:19:35 AM »
I'm pretty new to this forum, nobody here knows me much so I'll preface this with this: I'm an old long range hunter, I was doing it 30 years before it was all the rage like it is now...started back in the mid 80's....but I've also bow hunted a lot.

I've been wondering about this lately...I know the common, and correct, answer is to not exceed my ability to hit where I aim.

But for this discussion I'd like to leave shooting ability out of the equation, lets just assume we can all hit a pie plate at 300 yards with a pistol...from the hip  (y)  ...hahaha, kidding about the from the hip part.

This is a discussion of internal ballistics...and I'm specifically curious to know just how far a 200 grain XTP with a muzzle velocity of 1,305 fps can cleanly take a deer. The 10mm can muster over 750 ft. lbs. of energy at the muzzle...if you subscribe to the energy idea....I've taken several deer with a 45acp with only a little over 350 ft. lbs. of energy, all clean  kills.

I'm talking a big deer...not a 100 lb. doe, I'm after them old bruiser bucks that often exceed 200 pounds live weight that have been known to absorb good hits and keep on going never to be seen again...I'm convinced an old whitetail buck just might be harder to stop than the big 5 if you catch them when they're all wired up.

I've got one of these bucks located at one of my hunting spots...

The place where I think I can corner him, the shot will be no more than 20 yards...but I'm still curious, just how far should I shoot with the 10mm and expect a quick, clean kill.

He was a big 9 point last year...the next trail cam pics should tell the tale about this year a little better, if I can get my wife to go check them for me...NOT EASY to get to this one.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2017, 12:12:35 PM by Ridgerunner665 »

tommac919

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2017, 07:43:40 AM »
Not much of a hunter of large animals...only a few times... but I can take a guess.

I would put the safe range ( with a good round ) for a 10mm pistol similar to what you would shoot with the bow.  I wouldn't take a shot unless inside the max range of 100ft.

If a large buck, I prob go with something heavier.  I have only gone with a 30-06 so i don't have any knowledge with other rounds... Ive had one shot hits, they traveled a max of 100ft after hit, one much less, one just dropped.

Rojo27

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2017, 11:31:31 AM »
The question on 10mm pistol hunting range envolves various elements of skill, ethics, game type, ammo, conditions, situation. 

Harvested a 300+lbs wild boar with singe shot from 10mm Glock using the 200gr Underwood XTP from about 30 yards. Boar obliged by turning about 75 degree perpendicular to me and provided unobstructed view of his ear & neck.  Bullet hit about inch and half below and behind left ear and DRT'd the boar.  In that particular case the projectile was exceptionally effective.  As it was a mean, dangerous boar and I wasn't looking for a trophy mount; I was fully prepared to feed him as much lead as would have been necessary to settle the issue. 
But a trophy buck to me is a much more serious endeavor.  It's not a matter of simply killing the deer in my opinion.  It's about harvesting a majestic wild animal as humanely, swift & cleanly as possible.  Wounding and losing the track of a trophy buck is as anguishing and disappointing a result as any Hunter can experience.  Years and years ago I lost the track of a nice buck hit in the boiler room from a 308 and although I've taken dozens of deer since then; I've never forgotten that feeling. 
You know the answer and said it yourself.  It's within the distance your ability allows you hit where your aiming.  I've seen some 40 & 50 yard shots on bucks with 10mm do the trick but I'd personally stay inside 25 yards.  If it was an animal I'd been after for years and intended to make a trophy of; I'd most likely have a rifle along to remove as much doubt as possible if distance was much beyond that stated or conditions called for it. 

The_Shadow

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2017, 11:52:18 AM »
The last deer I shot was with my Winchester APEX 45 Cal Muzzleloader, Bullet was the Hornady 0.400" 200 grain XTP in a sabot.
The velocity from the 29" barrel is between 1950 and 2000 fps.  Range to the deer was 140 yards, shot placement was right side slightly behind the right leg, bullet entered broke ribs, punched the lungs and even hit the top of the heart, broke a rib on far side with the bullet stopping under the hide left side just behind the left leg.  You couldn't ask for a more perfectly placed shot.
Well this medium sized Mississippi 6 point turned 180 hit the gas and ran down hill about 180 yards and crashed in a thicket.

Estimated impact velocity was about 1450 fps, with such a good hit I didn't expect him to make that much of a run.
While I have been able to hit 4" targets with my S&W 1006 at 130 yards, I doubt I'd shoot a deer at that distance unless I was extremely hungry!
« Last Edit: June 11, 2017, 11:54:49 AM by The_Shadow »
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Ridgerunner665

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2017, 12:35:05 PM »
Given a decent rest (sitting using shooting sticks).... I can hit milk jugs at 100 yards.

The bullet still has over 1,000 fps worth of speed, over 500 ft. lbs. of energy, and has only dropped 1.5" below the point of aim...no holdover required and substantially​ more powerful than some 45acp loads I've used in the past.

Would 100 yards be a reasonable​ shot in your opinion?

The_Shadow

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2017, 06:21:51 PM »
100 yards is doable but don't expect a DRT, except in the case of central nervous system disruption hit, brain, brainstem or neck hit that disrupts the spinal cord.  Just thinking of the most humane kills for the sake of the animal.

I've made heart lung hits some made 30 yards and like my last 180 yard sprint before dropping.

I made a 180 yard double lung and cut the heart in half with my S&W Mod 29 44 magnum, that one leaped straight up into the air like all four legs were on springs, dropped right where it stood.  This is somewhat rare in my opinion, but it was the 44 magnum.

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Ridgerunner665

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2017, 07:32:18 PM »
Heart shots are unpredictable.... I've read that it depends on the exact timing of where the heart is in its beat cycle when the bullet passes through that dictates the outcome.

In basic terms, whether the valves are open in such a way that it lets the massive spike in blood pressure enter the brain... If the timing is wrong, they have 8 seconds or so of wide open running with 2 good and working lungs... If the timing is right, they are knocked unconscious and die in about 8 seconds.... The brain of most animals can survive about 8 seconds after the heart stops beating... Using 35 MPH as an average speed, a deer can travel 130 yards in 8 seconds.

With a rifle, I'm a high shoulder shooter... I've never lost an animal with a high shoulder shot, they just can't go very far very fast when both front legs don't work... And with a rifle they die pretty fast too, as there is spinal disruption from that shot.

I expect that placement will work with a 10mm too, but research indicates a strong following for center lung shots with pistols.... with most dropping within 80 yards or so.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2017, 08:13:21 PM by Ridgerunner665 »

spaniel

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2017, 05:28:30 PM »
High power rifles can cause so much shock damage that animals drop very quickly.  With lower velocity rounds, it's all about cutting blood flow or the nervous system.

A number of years ago I had a small buck run up on me across a ditch, at a range of perhaps 10-15 feet.  I put a 325gr 458cal FTX right into the center of his chest at perhaps 1800fps out of a muzzleloader.  The deer had seen me, and was about to spook, and the boom and smoke only made the issue worse.  He spun and covered a good 200 yards before dropping over dead.  Upon cleaning the animal, I had hit both lungs, the heart, the liver, and found a nicely mushroomed bullet in one of the back hams when grinding the meat.  I could not have hit that deer better, but without a CNS hit, adrenaline alone was good for 200 yards.

So with a pistol one has to manage expectations.  Break the shoulders or accept that a 100+ yard track is not necessarily a failure, but part of the game with these weapons.  I've also shot a buck with a fixed 1.25" broadhead straight through the center of the heart and had it go over 150 yards.

SHOOT1SAM

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2017, 08:17:05 PM »
Ridgerunner665:  "...and I'm specifically curious to know just how far a 200 grain XTP with a muzzle velocity of 1,305 fps can cleanly take a deer....Given a decent rest (sitting using shooting sticks).... I can hit milk jugs at 100 yards."

Figuring a milk jug to be about the size of a paper plate, i.e., the broadside of a deer, and figuring you can comfortably and consistently hit that at 100 yards, I think you would be better off with a 200 gr. hard cast bullet to hopefully break the shoulders, and even if not, to penetrate completely through, maximizing blood loss with both an entrance and an exit wound.

Sam

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #9 on: June 22, 2017, 07:23:30 AM »
The results of heart/lung shots on deer can vary greatly. This past year I shot a smallish doe at 100 yard with a 430gr cast bullet from my 45-70 levergun. Perfect double lung with huge holes in the lungs. The doe ran 100 yards before folding up basically right in front of me. A few years ago I shot another doe at 350 yards with my 30.06 and 165 gr bullet. The doe just stood there so, thinking I missed, I shot again and she fell over. I found two perfect double ling shots when I got to her.

sqlbullet

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2017, 07:34:58 AM »
You will have the same energy and velocity at 300 yards as a 45 ACP at the muzzle.

Now, that both does and doesn't answer the question. 

If I were hunting recreationally with plenty of well stocked grocery stores around if I didn't get a deer today, I would limit my shots to 100 yards or less.  On the other hand, if the zombie apocalypse is in full swing and that deer was my best bet for food was that deer, I might take a 300 yard shot.


Ridgerunner665

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2017, 08:26:09 PM »
I attempted a 100 yard bullet expansion test the other day...200 grain XTP at 1,305 fps muzzle velocity...wanted to see how it expanded at 100 yards...didn't quite work out, didn't have enough jugs for another try.
 
I hit the jugs, just below the lids... The bullet tore up the top of the first 4 jugs, deflected upwards a tiny bit and left the scene.

Based on the 3rd entrance hole there was some expansion, but who knows...

The mess....


The first jug...


The 3rd jug....

« Last Edit: July 03, 2017, 08:27:45 PM by Ridgerunner665 »

sqlbullet

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #12 on: July 05, 2017, 08:23:21 AM »
Just load up some starting loads with HP38, Win 231 or WSF and shoot at 5-10 yards.  Those loads produce at the muzzle the velocities the bullet would have at full power out at 300 yards, eg 850-900 fps.

Ridgerunner665

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2017, 09:20:22 AM »
I would if I had those powders ☺️

I tried it with Unique but couldn't get below 920 fps, need 800 fps to make the bullet RPM's match, as that affects expansion too.

Clarification...

800 fps from the stock Glock barrel with its 1 in 9.84" rate of twist produces 58,537 RPM's.

At 1,300 fps, from the 7" KKM barrel with it's 1 in 16" twist, the bullet is spinning 58,500 RPM's.

Ridgerunner665

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Re: Range, how far is too far with a pistol?
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2017, 09:35:37 PM »
I have E3 powder too, I use it for 12 gauge skeet loads...

I'm pretty sure it will work for this bullet test (just as sure it won't fully eject the round), I'm not quite sure where to start with it though.