ft. lbs. for Deer

Discussion in 'Deer Hunting' started by vikingpreacher, Apr 28, 2008.

  1. vikingpreacher

    vikingpreacher G&G Newbie

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    What do you consider the minimum ft. lbs. of energy for deer? I know back in the old days the 44-40 and the like were popular deer cartridges and today are considered inadequate for deer. To me if you make a good shot there are few cartridges that won't do the job. To me a 25-06 or 243 is all you need.
  2. irish murphy

    irish murphy Suspended

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    It all depends what size deer you are talking about.Over here they range from large dog sized Hog deer to massive cow sized Sambar.I dont think in foot pounds of energy needed to knock deer over.I pick an appropriate calibre and load some well constructed projectiles.Get the load tuned so i can hit what i aim at and then go for it.
  3. .280Rem

    .280Rem G&G Newbie

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    I think it's generally accepted that 1000 ft lbs on target is minimum adequate.
  4. Midas

    Midas Chief Troll B' Gone Forum Contributor

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    Just put a well constructed bullet in the vitals, and that'll be all she wrote.
  5. turner

    turner Suspended

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    I'd tend to agree as long as the caliber was .243 and up. I understand LOTS of deer are shot with .22 caliber centerfire and rimfire rounds and harvested each year. I also will say that "any shot in the vitals" may not be sufficient for some harvests, especially depending on terrain and how thick the undergroth is. I've shot deer with a 12ga slug "in the vitals" and not seen blood for 30-40 yds or more. If the deer is out of sight (and hearing) then it can be near impossible to find it. (Where I live, anyway). A bullet that passes through and leaves 2 holes leaking and additional sign at the spot of the hit, is what I want, and I think you need a well constructed .243 bullet to ensure that happening on MOST shots! Again, only my opinion based on my experiences.
  6. Bravo

    Bravo G&G Newbie

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    I'll agree and say that a well placed shot with a 6mm bullet or larger that hits with 1000ft-lbs or more will be good for deer.
  7. FISHPOND

    FISHPOND G&G Newbie

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    I tend to agree with turner, however you are right and a great amount of animals have been taken with less energy. I read an article but can't find it now. It stated that the 30-30 killed deer faster because it deposits all the energy in the animal then the 30.06 who entered then exited the animal and deposited it's energy in the sand beyond it. However you can take longer shoots with the .06, so it all depends on your style of hunting. I hunt mule deer in Arizona, and I trust the .243 for what it is worth.
  8. Magnumsrule

    Magnumsrule G&G Newbie

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    I agree with 280. 1000 footpounds is what i go by. That is we are talkinga bout deer in the 300 pound range right?
  9. Ron AKA

    Ron AKA Suspended

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    I would agree that is in the ballpark, and as good a number as any to pick, if you must pick one.

    Ron
  10. scoutman

    scoutman G&G Newbie

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    i would say that 1000 to 1400 would be the minimum because some time a bullet like a 12 gauge is sometimes barely enough to take a deer like turner said.. my uncle shot a deer with his 338 and waited till dark to go and get it and could not find it. when he shot it, it dropped instantly and just laid there and did not move he watched it till he could not see any more
    he blasted it right in the vitals and found tons of blood where he shot it but it walked away from a 338! so never assume you have a big enough gun that you dont have keep a eye on your shot deer
  11. 338RemUltraMag

    338RemUltraMag Suspended

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    well here in maryland the minimum ft lbs is 1250 at the muzzle so that lets you use everything but 17 rounds, and i think the 17 rem has 1250
  12. lefty o

    lefty o G&G Enthusiast

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    im not too worried about minimum ft lbs, shot placement is much more important.
  13. Magnumsrule

    Magnumsrule G&G Newbie

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    Shot placement is probobly more important but it wont matter how good your shot is if you have no foot pounds behind it!
  14. mtm1

    mtm1 G&G Newbie

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    Exactly, I'd say stay away from the minimum.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2008
  15. binfordw

    binfordw G&G Newbie

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    Theres some sense for once!



    Spend less time worrying about calibers, and more time actually shooting.

    Anyone who thinks a deer they shot "ran away" becuse it wasn't enough power is only kidding themselves.


    And, For what its worth,

    it takes no where NEAR 1,000 ft-lbs. Its too easy to overlook just how much power that really is.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2008
  16. nathangdad

    nathangdad G&G Newbie

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    Well, . . .

    . . . . the .44-40 was always underpowered but if you can get close enough and aim well enough it will work. You might be interested in reading about the .38-55 from the black powder cartridge period
    which was very successful on deer.

    I agree the .243, 7mm-08, .25-06, and .308 are good for deer.
    Ft.-lbs is important but marksmanship is the truly important factor.
  17. Midas

    Midas Chief Troll B' Gone Forum Contributor

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    Amen!
  18. jimkim

    jimkim G&G Newbie

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    I think in GA it's a minimum of 500 lb at 100 yd. for rifle and handgun.
  19. just_a_car

    just_a_car G&G Newbie

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    I agree with binford and Midas.

    Are you really trying to tell me that you think if you take a .45ACP, .40S&W, or .357Mag at point-blank range (muzzle-velocity) and shoot a deer in the vitals it won't go down?!

    Those cartridges are way less than 1000 foot-pounds (370, 425, and 550, respectively; ref: Muzzle energy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia).
  20. vikingpreacher

    vikingpreacher G&G Newbie

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    More like 200-300 max. I'm thinking lower 48 whitetail.
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