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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Hunting with 50-70 on Deer (Read 2670 times)
RoyB
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Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Oct 8th, 2019 at 7:41am
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I have a Sharps Carbine in 50-70. Last year I used it on a "meat" hunt. Shot a small doe with it at not more than 50 feet. Pure lead bullet went completely through her. No blood trail. She piled up about 150 yards away and bled like hit by a truck.
Bullet did not expand at all. A perfect 1/2" hole right through her.
I'm shocked that there was zero blood trail until she laid down.
Want to use the rifle again this year but concerned about the "knockdown" or lack of.
425G LEE pure lead cast / 70g FF
Here is an article I wrote about the rifle:
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Any advise on hunting with these lead bullets would be appreciated.

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Roy B
Dartmouth, MA
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RoyB
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #1 - Oct 8th, 2019 at 9:57am
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I might try a Hornady XTP in a 50 caliber Sabot....what do you think?
  

Roy B
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marlinguy
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Ballards may be weaker,
but they sure are neater!

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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #2 - Oct 8th, 2019 at 10:10am
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I'd consider sending a mold to Hollow Point Mold Co. and have them do their magic to convert it to a HP mold. That should give more expansion and result in a blood trail.

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svartkruttgris#369
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #3 - Oct 8th, 2019 at 2:41pm
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Get a bullet with much larger meplat and cast as near pure lead as possible -- maybe even try pure Pb bullets intended for muzzle loaders. Shot 7 or so "small"deer with 54" muzzle loader and wide flat point bullets and always had nice blood trails and exit holes with lung/heart shots. Never recovered any bullets, all were pass through at 20 to 80 or so yds.

Best grouping bullet in my 50-70 (actually a 12,7X44R) were pure lead, large flat point. NONE of the ancient 50-70 bullets grouped nearly as well. Never took that rifle deer hunting but shot a few groundhogs and bullets created nice exit holes.

Always thought those old design 50-70 bullets were intended to penetrate deep into/through American buffalos when shot by Buffalo Bill.
  
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Schuetzenmiester
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #4 - Oct 8th, 2019 at 5:55pm
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I would cast RB alloy, 50:1 and hollow point them if possible. 

Might try round balls for close range small deer if the 20" twist isn't too fast.

The deer I have taken with my .54 flintlock didn't leave a blood trail, they just dropped in their tracks.  RB passed right on through.
  

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craigd
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #5 - Oct 8th, 2019 at 9:26pm
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I don't think it's a bad thing to work on trying to get some bullet expansion or at least consider a flat point for hunting. There are so many high power, flat shooting, controlled expansion rifle, cartridge and bullet combinations, that I think the question might be that there was probably a reason the Sharps in 50-70 was chosen in the first place. My opinion would be that the experience was not unusual, and some would have looked at it as good shot placement and a success. It happens, but if it dropped in its track that might have been misleading. I'd vote for a decent flat point bullet and enjoy this season.
  
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RoyB
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #6 - Oct 9th, 2019 at 8:40am
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I didn't chronograph this load. But I bet it is under 1000fps. Modern bullets have huge HydroShock. This bullet at that speed might not have much....??
  

Roy B
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #7 - Oct 9th, 2019 at 1:22pm
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The old timers and African hunters bust em through the shoulders to put them down first.  Those back of shoulder boiler room shots are generally for the modern needleblowers and their faddish smokeless powder. Grin
  
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RoyB
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #8 - Oct 9th, 2019 at 1:44pm
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Thank You Schuetzendave. Great info right there
  

Roy B
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craigd
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #9 - Oct 9th, 2019 at 2:33pm
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Itís not fresh on my mind, but I wouldnít overly worry about that knockout formula. I thinks itís significantly opposite to the hydrostatic(?) shock that youíre trying to compare it to in modern loads. If you get a pass through, which will probably happen again, the energy is being expended in the ground behind the deer, and it might show that quite a bit less energy was needed on the deer itself. Iíd agree with the shot placement thought.

Itís unrelated, but I recall watching one of those outdoor shows about an African hunt. The show host stumbled and on camera shot his professional hunter with a .458. It was a pass through and apparently didnít do as much damage as it might have and the story goes that the fellow turned out ok. That round had quite a bit of energy to expend, but luckily not in the fellow.
  
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svartkruttgris#369
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #10 - Oct 10th, 2019 at 4:22pm
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I have a somewhat different view of highly effective Pb and Pb alloy bullets for hunting than the "simplistic" comparisons from Taylor Knock Out equations, posted by Dave. My experience is based on a lifetime using very soft Pb alloy bullets (40-1 to pure Pb) with large meplats for hunting "small game" (turkeys, rabbits, foxes, etc.) and smallish white tail deer.  Most used were/are original 32-20 and 44-40 lead bullets, but some 50 and 54 caliber, similarily shaped, pure Pb bullets at about 1200 fps).

With edible and tasty critters, turkeys for example, it has long been obvious that really soft lead (typically 40-1 115-120gr) 32-20 bullets (Lyman/Ideal 31108) at 1300 fps are really destructive of edible parts and require careful shot placement to avoid that and to have turkeys "drop right there". The flip side is that they are excellent, one-shot killers. Ditto for original 44-40 205gr bullets (Ideal/Lyman 427098). On bigger game (whitetails) best eating parts are badly damaged when hit by such bullets from 44 to 54 caliber. Heart/lung shots resulted in deer running madly for 50-100M and collapsing, with abundant blood trail.

My only experience on bigger critters is elk, where 175 gr Nosler Partition bullets at original 7X57 Mauser velocities through heart and lungs has same effect as above for whitetails.

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JLouis
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #11 - Oct 10th, 2019 at 4:45pm
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Shooting that Doe at only roughly 17 yards is what probably caused your concerns for the lack of your bullets performance. Any bullet no matter what the distance may be or the type used that travels completely through an animal simply expends all of its energy and shock value to whatever finaly stops its travel and not the animal itself. A bullet that travels completely through an animal is just not the proper bullet to use for the game being pursued.
  
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RoyB
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #12 - Oct 10th, 2019 at 5:59pm
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". A bullet that travels completely through an animal is just not the proper bullet to use for the game being pursued."....totally agree. That is why I'm looking for advise on the proper bullet. Going to try hollow pointing them this year.
  

Roy B
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oneatatime
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #13 - Oct 10th, 2019 at 7:10pm
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Of course, a bullet that merely creates a surface wound is doing no one good. A bullet that cannot deliver hydrostatic shock isn't going to expend its energy in an animal unless it hits bone. Barring hitting bone, it better be punching holes in as much of the animal as it can. The 2 deer that I shot with a 45 ML using a Lee target minie suffered a very clean 45 caliber hole through skin, lung, heart, lung, and skin.
  
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svartkruttgris#369
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Re: Hunting with 50-70 on Deer
Reply #14 - Oct 10th, 2019 at 10:25pm
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JLouis wrote on Oct 10th, 2019 at 4:45pm:
Shooting that Doe at only roughly 17 yards is what probably caused your concerns for the lack of your bullets performance. Any bullet no matter what the distance may be or the type used that travels completely through an animal simply expends all of its energy and shock value to whatever finaly stops its travel and not the animal itself. A bullet that travels completely through an animal is just not the proper bullet to use for the game being pursued.


Cannot agree, at all!! I WANT bullets I use on game to make a nice exit hole, AFTER having done deadly damage from the time that bullet entered until it exited. It is that damage inside the animal that kills it. A nice blood letting exit hole adds extra value of a good blood trail, which hopefully will lead to the dead critter some few meters to 100 or so meters away from where it was shot. In dense cover that blood trail can be the insurance for finding that critter. Entrance holes seldom provide as good blood trail, leading from where critter was shot to where it quits running, as do exit holes.

SKG
  
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