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#3358493 - 10/04/09 06:01 PM Re: .40 for Deer Hunting? [Re: croldfort]
dennisinaz Offline
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 12/08/02
Posts: 7913
Loc: AZ

Would a .40 cal pistol be sufficient to cleanly kill a deer with?

The answer is still yes. I don't think it is ideal and maybe a stretch to call it good, but it is sufficient.
NRA Benefactor Member

Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don't.

#3358967 - 10/04/09 08:45 PM Re: .40 for Deer Hunting? [Re: BillyGoatGruff]
slingshot Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 12/17/05
Posts: 369
Loc: Tennessee
I have been told by police that they have trouble dispatching road damaged deer with their 40 S&Ws. I would suggest you look at 10mm or 41 mag or larger for deer hunting.

#3359129 - 10/04/09 10:39 PM Re: .40 for Deer Hunting? [Re: 222Rem]
Mackay_Sagebrush Offline
Campfire Guide

Registered: 07/03/07
Posts: 4315
Originally Posted By: 222Rem
Originally Posted By: VAnimrod
Originally Posted By: CrazyCoot
Would a .40 cal pistol be sufficient to cleanly kill a deer with?

Kill a deer? Sure.

Good enough for hunting them? Nope.

My thoughts prezactly.

In the last 14yrs I've shot well over 100 deer and elk with a .40S&W from a Glock 22. They've all been easier, closer shots than you'd encounter while hunting because they were crippled by motor vehicles first. Long story short, the performance is not inspiring with anything other than head shots. Given half a chance I use a long gun instead.

In a former life as a state trooper I had very similar experiences. I was issued a G21 .45 and put down similar amounts of vehicle struck game. The .45 was instantly effective when head shots were used. When the critter was semi mobile and would drag itself away at a rate faster than I could keep up on foot, I would shoot for the shoulder and bust the front shoulder, putting them down so I get get close enough to put a mercy shot into the brain. At one point, one winter I was so frustrated with watching some coworkers shoot at animals, causing more suffering, I held an informal class with a couple on the anatomy of game animals. They were trying to do the right thing, they just did not know.

In regards to the .40 for deer. I know of a very small number of exceptional handgun hunters that I would be totally comfortable with them using a .40 to hunt deer with. These men are crack field shots and respect their game enough not to cause any undue suffering. For the vast majority of handgun hunters, I would say stick with a 44 mag or 45 Colt.

#3382232 - 10/13/09 02:04 AM Re: .40 for Deer Hunting? [Re: Mackay_Sagebrush]
bobbyjack Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 03/04/07
Posts: 475
You had best check your states regs,cause here a 38 special is just too short,but a .357Mag is long enough,and a Colt 45 is okay
and a colt .45acp is too short. And the 40S&W is too short,but
the 10mil because of vel and flbs it is the only short cartridge
allowed for deer and larger game!

The 10 mil is probably allowed everywhere!


#3382439 - 10/13/09 05:55 AM Re: .40 for Deer Hunting? [Re: bobbyjack]
hikerbum Offline
Campfire Guide

Registered: 12/19/05
Posts: 2531
Loc: Western NY

the hunting regs are based on the physical length of the cartridge as opposed to caliber or energy.......

Wow.... Whack rules. What state are you ine

#3383569 - 10/13/09 01:54 PM Re: .40 for Deer Hunting? [Re: hikerbum]
croldfort Offline
Campfire Guide

Registered: 08/18/03
Posts: 4539
Loc: SE KS
I think my state (KS) goes by case length for legal handgun cartridges for deer, that would convert to powder capacity, that should convert to energy. The .38Spec, .45ACP, and .40S&W are too short. Rifle cartridges must be .24 caliber or larger. The state does many stupid things, but these appear to be right on to me.

#3401068 - 10/19/09 08:29 PM Re: .40 for Deer Hunting? [Re: croldfort]
Stemshot Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 01/21/02
Posts: 320
Loc: Behind you
You can kill a deer with a 22. A 40 cal in my opinion is a bad choice.

My partner had to put down a deer the other day with a 40 cal. Muley was already hopping around on a broken leg. Bullet to the head from 15 yards slowed it down enough to get a clean headshot.

Its a decent round for a defensive weapon. Not for a clean kill on moderate sized game though. It was never designed with hunting in mind.

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