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Author Topic: 40 cal  (Read 6049 times)
Daryl
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« Reply #45 on: December 26, 2009, 04:12:57 PM »

My .40 barrel loves 2F (or 3F) with LHV lubed patches.  This slippery lube requires 65gr. 3F or 75gr. 2f to shoot well. Anything less, is useless for making small groups at 50yds. plus. The barrel has a 48" twist, quite normal for that size.
My .45 GM barrel with 60" twist also likes 2f as well as 3F - there being a 10gr. spread with it as well, when using slippery lubes - 70gr. of 3F, 80gr. 2F. Neither load 'fouls' the bore, loading being identical - no wiping at any time same as in the .40.
Spit or water based 'lubes' will shoot well with less powder - interesting, I expect due to them being less slippery and building up the correct 'pressure' with softer loads.

Chronographing, I found the velocity of both 2F and 3F to be virtually identical for their respective accuracy loads.
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Dphariss
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« Reply #46 on: December 26, 2009, 05:28:46 PM »

Some friends are using water soluble oil, mixed as for machine toll use. Soaking the patches then setting them to dry.
The results in a dry somewhat oily feeling patch with more friction. Requires wiping but when the conditions are right it makes some very small groups.
I had to buy some for a project I was doing and will likely make some up for the over the chunk matches at Cody
Dan
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Dpeck
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« Reply #47 on: December 26, 2009, 05:32:05 PM »

The two opinions I have just read concerning lubes remind me of those that claim that bores can become to slick after shooting a while and need roughing up a bit.  Intersting concept, whcih I think may have merit as I have seen "shot in barrels"  require a different load.

DP
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Dan
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« Reply #48 on: December 26, 2009, 10:45:23 PM »

  You gentlemen have painted a picture the to be quite frank, has left me sick to my stomach thinking about the possibility of a lingering death from using the .40 as a deer rifle.   I will have to stop using it for deer.  I love to hunt them and see them (as long as it's not on the road) we have a population problem hear, way too many.   
 
   So how are .58s?


                   Thanx Rich

Rich, for what it's worth, I've got a little different opinion about what is or isn't appropriate for game afield.  You seem to have taken the thread as contrary to recommending a .40 for deer, but I'm not reading it the same way.  I don't argue that larger calibers are not suitable by any means, but experience has shown me that reliance upon numbers found on paper are a poor litmus in determination of suitability for what one uses to hunt.  No comment rendered here on the legality as prescribed by different states either.

As previously mentioned, muzzle loaders offer flexibility for hunting.  They may be loaded down or up as the shooter deems appropriate.  To the point of what is used, inclusive of caliber and load, one must first be able to put the ball where it will result in a decisive kill.  In context of the original post that started this discussion, there are two eventualities here.  One is that you smack a squirrel with far more oomph than necessary and in such manner there is little left but red mist.  The other limits the shooter to precise placement and doing little if any damage to the edible portions by way of a head shot.  Apologies to those who eat tongue and brains.  In any case, if a head shot is successfully made, it matters not what caliber or charge is used, only that it be accurate enough to enable such placement.

I find little difference between head shooting squirrels and taking the necessary steps to down larger game with a round ball.  First requirement is placement and that requires one to know the gun, load it appropriately and use it within one's limitations.  Secondly, there is a requirement that the ball perform within certain parameters, ie. be reasonably predictable in the terminal phase.  That means that it tracks more or less in a straight path thru the animal and neither over or under expands.  Barring deflection by heavy bone, round balls do a fair job of the former if they don't deform erratically.  Brittle alloys or very high velocities can contribute to such errant travels.  Lastly, the ball needs enough momentum to reach the vital organs and hopefully exit on the off side if the shooter's intent is to ventilate the cardiopulmonary system completely.

In very brief summary of round ball ballistics...they suck....as compared to conicals.  Round balls do not begin their journey with a great deal of energy, and will shed that quickly.  Regardless of that they are quite lethal and they tend to penetrate far better than most of the unwashed masses would imagine. 

There was discussion earlier in this thread that compared the .357 mag to a .40 cal round ball.  In my opinion, it is an apples and oranges comparison on the face of it, but if one looks into the issue a little deeper, maybe not.  Sectional Density is a measure of mass to cross sectional area and is used in the calculus of exterior ballistics and terminal ballistics, in the latter case as a comparative measure of a bullet's ability to penetrate.   A 158 grain .357 slug has a sectional density of .177, and a .40 caliber round ball is about .102.  For comparison, a .22 short bullet is about .105.  None of these numbers are impressive on the face of it, but where it gets interesting is what happens when they strike a game animal.

Bullets usually expand or in some cases fragment when they penetrate flesh and bone, and when this occurs it very rapidly degrades sectional density.  Bullets expand in relation to their hardness and impact velocity:  Hard = less expansion, while high velocity tends to increase it.  It is a world of nearly infinite variables and difficult to pin down precisely, thus we look for something that is reasonably predictable. 

In the end, it is up to the shooter to decide what will or won't work for any given circumstance.  A previous poster said the .357 was good for deer.  In the hands of a competent shooter, I agree.  So is buckshot when used within its limitations, and the shot size is smaller than .40 caliber in all buckshot.  I've seen #3 buck (~.25 caliber) pass thru and thru on mature hogs more often than not.  I've killed over 60 hogs with CB shorts, with one exception, all one shot kills.  So, is the .40 caliber round ball adequate for deer?  Yes, if you can put it where it needs to go.  That means knowing your rifle, your quarry and yourself.  If you aren't up to speed in any of those departments, get a larger caliber.  Or, you can learn what you need to know to address perceived shortcomings.  One thing is certain however, one can wound and lose a deer with very large caliber muzzle loaders, just like the small bores.  Happens every year this time because a lot of folks just think a larger bore relieves them of the need for holding up their end of the bargain.  Ain't so.

Dan
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Daryl
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« Reply #49 on: December 27, 2009, 12:42:17 PM »

Good treatise, Dan.
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Top Jaw
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« Reply #50 on: December 28, 2009, 07:48:40 PM »

I know we got off on a slight side-bar regarding a .40 cal as a multi-purpose rifle for small game & deer, so why we are here, I have a question. 

Regarding deer, I have purchased some .40 cal conical bullets that I will lube and place over some felt wads, to see if I can work up a deer hunting load that offers acceptable accuracy and has some improved punch from a heavier, higher energy, and expandable bullet (vs the roundball).  I know barrel twist will have some bearing on the accuracy (maybe a 1 in 48" would work). 

Has anyone had success using conicals in a .40?  If so, what did you use?  If accuracy was decent, it seems this would make it more of a cross-over caliber, maybe rivaling a .45 roundball in performance.

Your thoughts?

Top Jaw
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bob in the woods
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« Reply #51 on: December 29, 2009, 12:39:21 AM »

Going to a conical is heading in the wrong direction IMHO. Unless a fast enough twist,ie  like for a Sharps etc I'd stick with the round ball. I finally got my Sharps 40-70 to work OK on deer, but only after switching to a castbullet with a .300+meplat.   ie a flat nose.  In the usual muzzleloader, I prefer round balls, 'cause they work. Pressures are going to go way up with a conical of any decent length. Velocity will drop, over what you can get with a RB, so I don't see much of an advantage when talking deer hunting.  I have a .50, a .54,a .62,  and up etc so I don't use my .40 for deer;  but if I did, I'm certain that awell placed shot
with my load of .395 ball and 60 gr 3 F  would drop one.
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Dpeck
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« Reply #52 on: December 29, 2009, 06:48:05 AM »

Bob's comments follow pretty much what I have seen.  One individual that I associated with shot something like 28 deer with his 50.  His claim was that he preferred roundball because they were more accurate and the conicals did not expand or blow as big of a hole.  Other sources have stated this.  I have also heard that the 40 cal BPC's like Bob referred to tend to push through with little or no expansion, probably with round noses.  My experience with my 45-70 is that the Gould hollow point expands very well and is very effective on deer, but that the heavier flat points are not as destructive.  Most of the slugs tend to shoot best at lower velocities, and for a ML are still not that ballistically efficient, such that their weight permits higher down range velocities but not all that much.  The 40 would be used within 40-50 yards where an ideal shot is presented.  Also deer do vary in size depending on age and location.  A very large buck in the midwest will weigh in at 220 pounds or better.  Some field dress at 200 that I see in the paper.  In warmer climates a large buck might weigh in a 150-170, Does and yearlings are alos proportinately smaller.  I feel a 40 will handle a 125 pound or smaller deer quite well, I would feel kind of silly holding one if a large 220 pound 10 pointer showed up.  It would harvest the 10 pointer but tracking might be a challenge no would I trust a shoulder shot.
Use the 40 with a RB and within its limitations.


DP
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Ray Nelson
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« Reply #53 on: December 30, 2009, 10:21:45 PM »

The 40 cal is a great all around caliber and a favorite of mine. Perfect for almost every endeaver in Minnesota any ways. Is light for deer/bear/moose but fun to shoot and more than capable for the squirrel, rabbit, porky pine, fox, coyote and plinking. As in all hunting cases...no your limitations, effective distance and a 40 cal  gun is capable. There is nothing wrong with letting that buck walk away if it is out of killing range. You just have to learn to hunt closer. And if it's yer only gun...you will learn to do so or git abit hungry.

Ray
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