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Discussion Starter #1
Why is it that a .44 handgun (M-29) was considered to be so powerful a hunting cartridge, you could take large and dangerous game (bears) with it, when the .30-30 is considered to be just a minimal whitetail/black bear gun (Win. 94) cartridge??? A .44 out of a 6" barrel is much less powerful, than a .30-30 out of a 20" Win. 94. Am I missing something??? :geek: Bob
 

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Folks who study paper ballistics love to bash the .30-30. Folks who hunt with a .30-30 know just how effective a cartridge it is inside 150 yds., and continue to use it on bear and deer-sized game with complete confidence. When it was introduced, it was the do-all end-all cartridge of the 1890s!

A hard cast FN .44 cal. bullet will cut a larger entry hole than a .30 cal bullet. Other than that, I consider those two cartridges similarly effective on game. JMO, based on my own experience.

Maj. Doug Wesson went on an extended big game hunt in the western US back in the 1930s to showcase the then-new .357 Magnum. He brought back deer of all sort, antelope, bear, elk caribou, and others - and there was all of that same hyperbolic ballistics chatter and comparison with the .30-30 back then.

xtm
 

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The distances normally accepted as hunting ranges for the two are quite different. Elk have been taken with long bows and hand made arrows for thousands of years but I would never try it at 100 Yds
 

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Discussion Starter #4
xtm, That's my thinking.....exactly!!!! ;) When they were both introduced to the shooting public........357 and the .30-30 were claimed to be the cartridges to take any game. But now, 100 years later, they are both said to be only barely aedequate for average size whitetails. I realize that better and more powerful cartridges were developed, to eclipse these old stand bys.......but they are still effective at shorter ranges. :roll: Bob
 

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If you read some of the gun writers /Experts of days gone by you will be surprized by the ideas of effective cartridges. When the Ruger Carbine 44 Magnum came out in the 1960s a number of writer/experts considered that it would be more effective than the 30-30 for deer at short range. All of the Winchester '73 rounds (44-40, 38-40, 32-20) were considered great for hunting a hundred years ago. The 44 Rimfire, 44-40, 44 & 45 Colt, 44 S&W American. were all used to harvest the Bison from horseback.
goodidea
 

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Some folks I trust have told me that in their experience the 44 magnum fired from a carbine "drops" deer quicker than the 30-30 if they're shot at 100 yards or less. The theory is that the wider bullet is making a difference. However, past that, the 44 trajectory gets in the way. I've no personal knowledge since I've never killed a deer with a 30-30, but I definitely DO NOT discount older calibers. The 30-30 kills 'em just as dead now as it did when it was the wonder gun of the time.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Maybe the .44 is more effective at 25 to 50 yards, typical deer ranges in my neck of the woods, (We have to use shotguns.) but the .30-30 has been known to drop deer at 100 to 150 yards. Kinda making it a mid-range cartridge. For shorter ranges, a 12 ga. is a devastating weapon that will handle Alaskan bears.

I know I'd rather have a 12 ga. in my hands, than a .44 in Alaska. Unless I was fishing, where ease of portablility the a top priority. ;) Bob
 

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While I’ve taken both deer and black bear with a .44 magnum revolver it’s not my cup of tea. I favor the rifle over the handgun thus the .30-30 in a Winchester M94 is more than adequate. The problem with the .30-30 if there is one is the user. The average hunter that I’ve encountered in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina are hunters first and marksmen last. Since most deer on average are taken at close range it’s a toss up as to which is more effective.

This year I opened the property to hunting. The hunters used tree stands exclusively. They employed rifles but none were in .30-30. My observation is that they had more scope and cartridge then what was required.

Each evening I observe deer. Maybe I need to get better hunters in. Their allowed five deer to a tag but three of the five must be doe. There’s just no end to the deer around here.
 

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I've hunted for many years as my Dad did with a Win 30-30 in Michigan. Most of the time in wooded or not very open areas, so long distance shooting is not really anticipated, 150 yds max. So the 30-30 is fine.

In recent years, well actually the last 20, I have hunted with 44 mag revolvers. I have them sighted in to 100 yds.

In either case the Whitetail have dropped in one shot and venison was on the "barbie".

If you look at the bullistics the 30-30 is stronger in all categories, by more that 50%.

For me, longest hit with 30-30 100 yds, for 44 mag 90 yds., each hit at point of aim.

Lately, I like the challenge of the unscoped handgunvs the scoped rifle in my hunting adventures. Have to keep upping the bar.
 

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The 44 magnum in a handgun is ballistically a 44-40 in a rifle. No one in their right mind ever suggested that the 44-40 was superior to the 30-30. The 44 mag in a rifle is another thing and might -- MIGHT -- give the 30-30 some competition in ranges under 100 yards. I enjoy using it in my carbine and handgun, but a 30-30 would definitely increase my range.
 

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OK... the .44 Magnum in a rifle is superior to one chambered in .44-40, and the .44-40 is superior to the .44 Henry RF cartridge.

Kevin Costner killed a running buffalo dead-on-the-ground-with-one-shot using his Henry rifle! What am I missing?

nfiofnp

Sorry, I couldn't resist...

xtm
 

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xtimberman said:
OK... the .44 Magnum in a rifle is superior to one chambered in .44-40, and the .44-40 is superior to the .44 Henry RF cartridge.

Kevin Costner killed a running buffalo dead-on-the-ground-with-one-shot using his Henry rifle! What am I missing?

xtm
44 American and 44 Russian.
 

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The 30-30, what a classic. I think this all came about because in the charts, a few of the 44M rounds get close to 30-30 specs at the muzzle (add emphasis) but they quickly fall behind going down range. And I said close, not equal to. Here in the northeast it is said that more deer have been killed by the 30-30 than any other cartridge, and I think that this is a fact thats likely to continue being true for another century. 25-30 years ago I had a few friends who were then men in their mid 70s and older. The 30-30 is all most of them, except 1, ever used for 90% or more of their rifle needs. It was once commonly used to kill moose here in the northeast. Deer, bear, squirrels (fire in to the tree trunk just in front of the squirrel's nose and the concussion kills them like a hammer blow), even partridge shot in the head/neck. A shotgun, a 30-30 and a .22, 90 years or more ago, is all any boy or man needed for pretty much any shooting purpose, and I bet half the men alive around here back then had those 3 long guns and no others. I don't know what its like for you guys out west or in the south, but around here its still easy to walk in to a gun shop and find pre '64 Winchester 94s. A lot of them are a lot older than 1964, have little if any bluing left, but no doubt still shoot as good as the day they left the factory. I wish they could all talk. :)
 

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Discount older calibers? You are right ... that would be foolish indeed...

It is hard to see how much improvement has really been made over the 45-70 for North American game... lots of fad rounds have come and gone, but the old 45-70 will still take anything in North America at reasonable ranges.

FWIW

Chuck


parson45 said:
Some folks I trust have told me that in their experience the 44 magnum fired from a carbine "drops" deer quicker than the 30-30 if they're shot at 100 yards or less. The theory is that the wider bullet is making a difference. However, past that, the 44 trajectory gets in the way. I've no personal knowledge since I've never killed a deer with a 30-30, but I definitely DO NOT discount older calibers. The 30-30 kills 'em just as dead now as it did when it was the wonder gun of the time.
 

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Today I visited my favorite top secret gunshop and was very happy to see a couple of dozen old 30-30s, lots of them old Win 94s. After having read this thread last night I was again struck with the "I wish they could talk" magic that is all over old, well used guns. How many dinners were they responsible for? How many families did they feed? What adventures have they been on?
The older gent who runs/owns the shop had quite a few stories himself about the caliber and hunting experiences from his youth. And on how many of the old guns came to be in his posession.
 
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