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#200648 - 07/13/19 03:59 PM Practice with "HUNTING LOADS"
cherokeetracker
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How many here practice with your Hunting Loads?
The thread about the hunting shows made me think again of the expense.
I do practice some with my Hunting Loads. My ammo cost me about $2.00 a pop. But if I am going to do this , then I feel that I need to be able to know and shoot game at different distances and in different positions. Standing freehand is the biggest challenge but once this is mastered OR,,, at the least, IMPROVED Upon,, then other position become easier.
It doesn't matter if I am using my own loads or if I have purchased my ammo. It is costly nowadays. with prices and hazmat fees and or just buying at different places when I get a chance it can still run on up there. I buy premium bullets !!! on some loads I use match primers if needed and try to use new cases. My time is very valuable too.
If I sight my gun in at a certain distance and am using my Hunting load then I feel I need to know what is happening at other distances. Example my 44 mag with my favorite load is good for point blank to 75 yds.
Now with another load I have shot at 200 yds with the same gun. All ammo should be tested.
I have tested some of the bullets into water jugs.
I do know what I can do with my hunting loads, and it takes a lot of money too do this, but I feel that things are paying off.
This diligence is worth the price when I get the opportunity at game and then I am successful.
Charles

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#200653 - 07/13/19 05:02 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: cherokeetracker]
REDHAWK1954
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I like to practice a lot with my hunting loads. That is one reason I stick with common caliburs.
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#200654 - 07/13/19 05:03 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: cherokeetracker]
jamesfromjersey Moderator
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CT, I reload for about 90% of my handgun hunting ammunition and have always used the full power loads in practice... Its nice to find one good hunting load for each handgun and the only one that I have at this point is for my m-83 in 41 mag. This is a JT handload using #9 powder and either a 210 grain XTP or Swift bullet depending on the circumstances..
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#200657 - 07/13/19 05:27 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: jamesfromjersey]
longhunter
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Always hunt, practice, plink with the same ammo.
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#200660 - 07/13/19 06:03 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: longhunter]
Randy M
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Registered: 07/04/11
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Yep always. I've never subscribed to the lighter-load-for-practice theory. What works for me is having many practice sessions with minimal shots at each session. I doubt I've ever fired more than 15 rounds in a session. The only exception would be when I'm working up a load and have multiple bullet/powder combinations to test. And for these I usually have my press and components with me on the range.
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#200661 - 07/13/19 06:07 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: Randy M]
Franchise
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Registered: 12/21/08
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Loc: Castalia, NC

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My oddball rounds are only hunting loads....by the time I form brass and load....I practice only with what I hunt with......if I load a round with a bullet that underperforms......then, I'll "plink" with that one more than the others
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#200664 - 07/13/19 11:19 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: Franchise]
wvhitman
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Registered: 12/04/05
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Loc: WV

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For 40+ years I've shot groundhogs and deer with the loads I'm using for big game hunting that year. No surprises, know how the bullet & gun performs, and most importantly, how I perform.
Besides, it's really cool to do groundhogs with 400 gr. solids and SPs in my .416 Taylor.

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#200666 - 07/14/19 12:39 AM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: wvhitman]
sixshot
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Registered: 11/20/09
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If you expect to be successful you have to use the same loads in practice that you will use in the field but I do think you can substitute a bullet that isn't a premium bullet for practice.
If your premium bullet has already proven itself & you know that it works I see no problem subbing in something cheaper if you're busting rocks or punching paper.
If you are forming cases it's much cheaper to just use a cup & core bullet, actually you can do it with out a bullet although the shoulder will be just slightly rounded. Many fire form loads are very accurate.

Dick

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#200667 - 07/14/19 12:42 AM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: wvhitman]
KRal
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Registered: 04/06/05
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All of my loads are hunting loads as well. Sometimes I may substitute a cheaper bullet for trigger time, but it?s always the same weight and load I use when hunting. I try to shoot a lot and sending $1.50-$2.00 bullets to kill a piece of paper or steel just sticks in my craw.
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#200668 - 07/14/19 02:18 AM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: KRal]
abner
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Registered: 01/17/11
Posts: 160

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I handload all my ammo except for 22lr. My hunting rounds are the 30-30AI, 375 Win, and the 445 Super mag. I just use the same load for practice as I do for hunting. The only exception is, I shoot 38spcl loads in my open sighted 357 Mag revolver most of the year then re-sight in with Mag ammo closer to hunting season. Truth is, I don't hunt with my 357 anyway but shoot more rounds thru it than any other handgun I own.

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#200669 - 07/14/19 08:12 AM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: abner]
45MAN
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Registered: 08/13/17
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I AM HAVING A HARD TIME UNDERSTANDING WHAT THE QUESTION IS. ANY TIME YOU GET IN TRIGGER TIME IT IS "PRACTICE". YOU CAN CERTAINLY PRACTICE FOR A HUNT BY USING SIMILAR, AND LIGHTER KICKING, GUNS, OR THE SAME GUN WITH THE SAME, SIMILAR OR LIGHTER LOADS/CHEAPER BULLETS. I DO "PRACTICE" WITH MY ACTUAL HUNTING LOADS IN MY ACTUAL INTENED HUNTING REVOLVER BUT VERY SPARINGLY, AND MOSTLY SHOOTING TO SIGHT IN. MY REVOLVER PRACTICE/HUNTING LOADS FOR/DURING DEER SEASON AND/OR FOR HOGS, ARE DIFFERENT THAN FOR A BIG GAME HUNT.
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#200671 - 07/14/19 10:18 AM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: 45MAN]
Zee
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Registered: 03/23/14
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Quality training is quality training and fundamentals is fundamentals. You can practice them with a .22lr or a .500 JRH.

Familiarity with the particular idiosyncratic nature of a certain firearm/load can be beneficial if there is a stark difference in how the platform handles. But, 10 rounds of hot ammo verses 20 rounds of standard ammo in a training session? Well, I guess it just depends on what your training objective is.

I had my boy practice all summer with reduced powder 110gr .308 Win loads that were powder puff in the bolt action Specialty Pistol. But, he could stack them on top of one another at 100 yards from a field rest and not bat an eye in recoil. Adding to that, the practice with a Ruger .22lr Charger Pistol.

On game day, I put a 125gr SST load in the chamber that had more weight, velocity, and recoil, but which I knew had the same POI as the reduced load (I tested the results). He made a PERFECT shot on his deer and to this day.........has no clue I swapped ammo on him. He was so focused on the fundamentals that he didn?t realize the recoil difference.

Not saying you have to practice with less. Just that, if you do it right, practice is practice.

I just did the ?ballistic research? and load development FOR him. 😁
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#200672 - 07/14/19 12:32 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: Zee]
Teep
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Registered: 09/19/15
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Loc: MO

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I think a lot is what level you are at. Having returned to handgun hunting only three years ago I find that the 617 .22lr gives me much needed trigger time that is affordable and the transition to the 686 .357 magnum works quite well. When game is in the sights it is the feel of the revolver that is familiar and the recoil is never thought of or felt. Confidence goes a long way when hunting. I know that at my age I will never be as good as I was when young and really need a rest to shoot accurately and the more I can shoot the better I am prepared for hunting. Now, where is that darn coyote?

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#200673 - 07/14/19 01:31 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: Teep]
45MAN
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WELL SAID ZEE
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#200674 - 07/14/19 02:08 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: 45MAN]
sw282
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Registered: 09/01/12
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DRY FIRING is great practice.. And cheap TOO!!

Jeff Cooper once said that for every LIVE round fired he had

also ''fired'' at least TEN dry rounds

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#200675 - 07/14/19 02:44 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: sw282]
jamesfromjersey Moderator
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 Originally Posted By: sw282
DRY FIRING is great practice.. And cheap TOO!!

Jeff Cooper once said that for every LIVE round fired he had

also ''fired'' at least TEN dry rounds


Dry firing with snap caps is the way to go when you can`t get to the range. Before a hunt I would find pictures of the animal I was going for in sporting mags and tap them to the wall. I would try and find as many photos of different positions and aim for the vitals.
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#200676 - 07/14/19 04:53 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: jamesfromjersey]
45MAN
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WHILE ON SAFARI I WOULD "SHOOT" A BUNCH WITH SNAP CAPS TO GET IN SOME TRIGGER TIME.
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"ADAPT OR DIE". I USE ALL CAPS, NOT BECAUSE I AM YELLING, BUT BECAUSE IT IS AN OLD HABIT FROM MY ARMY DAYS, PLUS IT IS EASIER TO TYPE AND READ.

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#200680 - 07/14/19 11:23 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: 45MAN]
sixshot
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Registered: 11/20/09
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When my daughter was 14 years old she drew her first elk tag. I had bought her a Remington 722 in 308 caliber & all summer I had her practice shooting cast bullets at steel targets. We would walk out the back door of the house, make sure none of the horses were in the way & then I would have her walk to the end of the car port, sit down quickly & knock down the steel Silhouette targets with the reduced loads.
She got so she could do it quite fast with the 170 gr cast bullets. On opening morning of her elk hunt we were in a favorite canyon with a friend who had his 16 year old son along for his first elk hunt. We had split up & the elk were bugling all around us.
It wasn't long before a 5X5 bull walked out of the Aspens & looked down at our horses. Now she was shooting a 150 gr Hornady for the very first time, one shot at about 75 yds & she had her first elk. Ten minutes later our young friend killed a 6X6 bull.



Dick

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#200683 - 07/15/19 12:35 AM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: sixshot]
Bob Roach
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Registered: 03/02/10
Posts: 965
Loc: Missouri Ozarks

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I do shoot my hunting loads a great deal through out the year.
I also shoot a lot of 22 LR through my Contender Super 14 barrel. Economical Trigger Time. I live 10 mile from the Range, and it is on my way to town, and also on my way home from town. I can shoot any time I want to, which is a big help.

This was my Steel Challenge weekend. I shot a couple hundred rounds through my 617 S&W Saturday, and I shot my GP100 with +P 38 Specials today. Not the recoil of my 480 SRH, but still quality trigger time.

Some dedicated position shooting to simulate hunting shots needs to be rolled in as well.

Bob R
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#200688 - 07/15/19 09:51 AM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: Bob Roach]
karl
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Registered: 01/12/15
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What Zee said x2

If I can, I work up a ballistically equivalent load with a cheaper bullet for range practice.

I also mount a different barrel 22lr, 17 HMR or 223 for contender practice. Most of my hunting is with a scoped contender/encore so that is relatively easy to transition back and forth.

I had the contender out for the first time in ages with a 223 barrel on it. First 100yd groups were ~2.5". After most of a 50 rnd box of cheap factory loads and focusing on technique, they were closing in on an inch. That technique transfers between any of my barrels and to some degree to the encore too. Now to get out on a regular basis for the next couple months to develop train the muscle memory.

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#200692 - 07/15/19 12:01 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: karl]
cherokeetracker
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I have almost worn out a good set of snap caps. This helps tremendously with Trigger control, and holding a gun in the Freehand position. Getting used to the weight and feel and trying to be consistent in your grip is important, and the cheapest way to go.
ZEE & SIXSHOT,,,,Layne Simpson did the same with his wife Phyllis, when she decided to go from a 243 to the 270. Started with light loads and worked up then used a full load to harvest an animal with no noticeable recoil.
I did a little similar with my 454, by using my 45 cylinder at first and increasing the loads till I got the Bear loads, of 350gr lead. It helped some, but was not what I was looking for.
I had to succumb to buying 454 ammo, the cheapest I could find and then continue working till now,,, The 454 does not bother me at all shooting it. NO flinching. I now enjoy shooting it a LOT.
KRAL,,, Yes I hate to see the money disappear with my Premium ammo. About like spending money on Fireworks,,, with the exception it brought a lot of joy to my children.
I do have to look at this with the eyes of joy in that I now have killed a few hogs, an Aoudad, and a Corsican EWE. I look forward to successfully taking several to many more animals with it.
I want to publicly Thank ALL of those involved in this. You know who you are, if you read this.

Charles

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#200693 - 07/15/19 01:51 PM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: cherokeetracker]
sixshot
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Registered: 11/20/09
Posts: 776

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I have to admit, I couldn't fool my daughter for very long. After about her third deer with that 308 she ask me about the "different" bullets & I said, well I did tell you they were lighter, 170 gr cast vs 150 gr Hornady but I didn't say they kicked less.
She said I noticed that they kicked more but it didn't matter, by then she was a very good shot & her confidence in that gun & load was very high. From the sitting position with a sling she was & is deadly.

Dick

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#200737 - 07/22/19 09:02 AM Re: Practice with "HUNTING LOADS" [Re: sixshot]
bluecow
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Registered: 10/26/08
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Loc: maine

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I reload my 44 with 240swc @ 1100-1200 fps. then all i'm hunting are white tails, tin cans, dirt clods, fence posts,...... someday hogs maybe.
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