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#192871 - 06/07/18 12:16 PM Which caliber?
Gsj
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Registered: 05/11/18
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I?m interested in my first contender for hunting. Will be used for deer, antelope, hogs & coyotes. Tried a pistol scope yrs ago,didn?t do well, time to try again.planing on a quality 2X scope. Big question... which caliber, 44 mag or 30-30? Dont plan on shooting long range, (125-150 yards), just extending my range from a iron sighted 44 mag. Any opionions & why?
Thx

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#192873 - 06/07/18 12:41 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: Gsj]
REDHAWK1954
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Registered: 08/01/14
Posts: 1584
Loc: Statesville NC

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I like my sweet 14 30 30 contender. It has a 2.5 x 8 Weaver scope on it and shoots three shot groups under 0.50 inches at fifty yards with both factory and hand loads when I do my part.

I was lucky enough to kill two deer with it last year with Hornady's 160 gr LeverEverlutions.

This year I have worked up a hand load with the 110 grain Barnes Black Out bullet that looks very promising.

I also have a sweet 14 44 mag contender that shoots great also. It has a factory break. I do notice a little more recoil with the 44 mag but neither one has much.

For my first hunting handgun I would choose the 30 30 because it has more range but either will work at 100 yards.
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#192874 - 06/07/18 12:52 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: REDHAWK1954]
karl
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Registered: 01/12/15
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As Michael says, either will work well at the given ranges. Do you re-load one or the other? want to consolidate the # of calibers in the house? I would say the 30-30 with factory loads is more pleasant to shoot then the 44 loads. There are some shorter and lighter 44 mag barrels around (typically 10" octagon style) that produce uncomfortable recoil.
As always, bullet selection is important.
I think reloading is needed to really unlock the full potential of the 30-30 in a contender.
There are more 44 mag options and a contender will give you a boost over revolver performance.

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#192876 - 06/07/18 01:47 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: karl]
Gsj
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Registered: 05/11/18
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Yes , I do reload, and that?s one reason the 44 mag contender is an option.. I have dies, brass, primers, and bullets already, but I know a 30-30 would supply more range. If I?m going down the 30 cal rabbit hole, should I consider the 300 whisper/blackout? There?s also the 6.8 Rem, or the 7-30 waters.... I reloaded the 7-30 yrs ago... had fun doing it too. 7mm TCU maybe?
Lots of options.... 150 yard deer handgun, that?s the goal. What do the informed think?

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#192880 - 06/07/18 03:32 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: Gsj]
JDK
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Registered: 01/18/04
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I'd say 30-30. I picked up a 30-30 barrel last year and used it to take the deer in my avatar. I really like it and used plain old, cheap Rem 150 Cor-Lokt RN bullets. After learning about the 30-30 AI, I'll re-chamber to that if I want more power. It takes the platform to a whole new level and allows you to shoot the factory rounds as well. But, even in standard factory guise I believe the 30-30 is very hard to beat for most hunting.
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But for the grace of God, there, I go.

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#192881 - 06/07/18 05:17 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: JDK]
500WE
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Registered: 02/12/07
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.30-30, of the two you mention.

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#192883 - 06/07/18 05:45 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: 500WE]
45MAN
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I WOULD GO WITH A 30-30 OVER THE 44 MAG. I WOULD ALSO RECOMMEND AGAINST THE 2X UNLESS YOU WILL SHOOT AT 75 YARDS AND UNDER. A FIXED 4X, OR BETTER, A GOOD VARIABLE 2X6 OR 2.5X8 OR SOMETHING SIMILAR.
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#192885 - 06/07/18 06:02 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: Gsj]
karl
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 Originally Posted By: Gsj
If I?m going down the 30 cal rabbit hole, should I consider the 300 whisper/blackout? There?s also the 6.8 Rem, or the 7-30 waters.... I reloaded the 7-30 yrs ago... had fun doing it too. 7mm TCU maybe?


Rabbit hole is a good description. They will all work with the right bullet. Just depends on what you want.

A 30-30 in a 14" contender will give you a good bit more velocity then listed on factory 300 ammo with the same bullet. 30-30 AI would be a boost beyond. but I would argue it isn't necessary for the ranges you are talking. 30 cal gives you a lot of great spitzer bullet options that grew out of the 300BO that function at lower velocity. The Barnes bullet Michael mentioned (the black tipped ones, 110 or 120gn) work great. They hold together (full weight retention) at velocities a well over 2500fps and open reliably down to 1400fps.

I use the 110gn barnes(or the 110gn vmax for cheaper plinking) and can launch them all day at 2500 fps with no discomfort. At that MV they don't drop below 1400fps until >400 yards. Well beyond my personal effective range. Michael launches them at ~2300 fps for a little less recoil, better accuracy and no real change in effective hunting range. I've shot several deer the load and it's a hammer. IMHO, it drops them faster then 12g slugs.

I played with a 7-30 waters for a while but returned to the 30-30 because of the barnes bullet.

If you do go 30-30, check out the lee collet die for neck sizing.
I now reload 30-30 much faster without using any lube and only one cleaning for powder residue.


Edited by karl (06/07/18 06:05 PM)

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#192894 - 06/07/18 10:30 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: karl]
KYODE
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Registered: 01/18/04
Posts: 2966
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I love the 30-30 ackley improved and would bet you would also. I have a factory super 14. Very accurate barrel!
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#192895 - 06/07/18 10:40 PM Re: Which caliber? [Re: Gsj]
s4s4u
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Registered: 01/18/04
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Loc: Northern MN

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 Quote:
7-30 waters....


This is what I use for midrange deer. I also don't care for magnified pistol scopes so I have a 3-9x rifle scope on my 13" MGM barrel. This scope does have generous eye relief so no need for a brake on the barrel. I am comfortable to 200 yards and some with this rig. Nothing wrong with the 30-30 either.
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