.50 Cal Hawkins and Deer Hunting-wrong set up, or just unlucky???
I have hunted with my TC .50 cal hawkins for a few years now. I have only had the opportunity to pull the trigger on 2 deer. The first deer I thought I shot, jumped, but never stopped, never found any blood. This was a few years ago. Then 2 weeks ago I shot a buck at approx 20 yards broadside in the shoulder area, he left dragging his leg. I tracked him for over 6 hours, 110 acres of brushy timber, all while following a blood trail of a quarter size blood drops to 6 inch diameter pools when he would stop for a while. The buck I am guessing would be typical of what is shot around here, about 130-150lbs field dressed. I never did find him. I am curious. Having never taken an animal with BP. I am using a TC .50 cal Hawkins with 1/48 twist. I am using a properly patched .495 round ball with 90 grains of powder. Does the round ball not pack the punch that one would expect? If I hit the shoulder area, would the round ball penetrate into the chest cavity? I hate the fact that I waisted an animal, not only for the meat, but to examine the effectiveness of the BP rifle. No luck for me. Would a great planes conical be a better option for me? I am looking for folks who have experience hunting with traditional BP's. I expected the buck to have fallen over or something upon impact, but he reacted as if he was hit with a slingshot/stung (other than the leg dragging)?? Thanks for the reply, and also I hope I was not being to graphic in my discussion of my experience. (did not mean to gross any non-hunters out). I read somewhere that blood loss is less with a round ball than with a conical since the round ball tends to streach the skin leaving a smaller impact hole than with a traditional conical? I don't know if this is true either??