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Old June 8, 2013, 09:24 AM   #26
Bob Wright
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L_Killkenny said:
On critters like skunks, coyotes, groundhogs, etc the ............
On skunks, the greater the distance, the better.

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Old June 8, 2013, 09:58 AM   #27
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What is the farthest shot you would feel comfortable with a handgun?

Depends on the handgun and depends on the target. At steel gongs or other inanimate targets, I feel comfortable shooting at any range with any of my handguns. Targets that breathe tend to be different........
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Old June 8, 2013, 08:56 PM   #28
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Have carried either 1911 GM or 4" .357MAG,...

for regular deer season in MI when carrying my .50 muzzle-loader.

Had fired with both @ 100 yds.

WHen carrying just sidearms, I had a Ruger Blackhawk, 7.5" barrel .45LC, that I could keep a cylinder load on a paper plate @ 85 yds.

You have to determine what you are comfortable with.

Good luck!

For hiking in the WA Cascades, carried either using 180gr hot cast lead or 230gr FMJ (both round nose or Flat point), but that was more for close -in duty.
e.g.: black bear / cougar
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Old June 8, 2013, 09:55 PM   #29
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I've hit metal plates and poppers at 50 yards. Beyond that I wouldn't feel comfortable...
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Old June 9, 2013, 12:37 AM   #30
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How far would I feel comfortable?

For fun, I shoot the 200yd gong at the rifle range, offhand. One handed, 7.5" barrel .45 Colt [email protected] And I hit, often.

For game? Big game, half that, and rested if possible.

Small game? half that again, and wishing for a .22 instead of a .45

Shooting something like a scoped Contender? rested, in .222 or .30-30, or .45-70, my "comfortable" distance will be a bit different.
All else being equal (and it almost never is) bigger bullets tend to work better.
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Old June 9, 2013, 06:17 AM   #31
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I have done very well at the range at 100yds. I have killed hogs out to 85yds while in the stand, and have killed two hogs back to back freehand out to 30yds with my Taurus Raging Bull 454.

Keep shooting guys,,,you will get better at it.

I went to the range yesterday and at 10 yards with my .45cal glock I put 12 shots in the head of a silhouette target in about 15 seconds.........
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Old June 9, 2013, 08:50 AM   #32
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Only handgun I'm real good with at the moment is my RG in .22 LR. I can shoot 17 oz bottles at 25 yards.
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Old June 9, 2013, 08:57 AM   #33
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50 yards with my Ruger MKII target model over open sights. I can't say I'm terribly accurate at that distance, but. I can hold a group about the size of a desert sized paper plate.

I don't own, nor have access to anything with "magnum" in the caliber name, so most of my pistol shooting is done at 10-25 yards and almost exclusively over open sights. I have never shot a handgun with scope, nor do I really want to honestly. If I am far enough away that I need a scope I may as well brig my Mauser and pack a lot more power. Anyway... I did shoot a G19 once with a red dot in it and that was a hoot...!

I would try a .357 magnum at 50-100 yards over open sights if I knew anyone with one though.
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Old June 9, 2013, 10:24 AM   #34
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Freehand with irons I can keep it on a 9" target at 25 yards. If it's a good day there might even be something resembling a softball-sized group as opposed to a shotgun blast on the target.

Frankly I have trouble *seeing* the blasted target once it gets out to 100 yards or so. No idea how guys are doing it with irons, but I'm sure some can.

Personally, anything much past 25 yards with a pistol is luck or at best inconsistent. If I'm sitting with a rest it's not a big deal, but figure at that point I may as well be using a rifle.
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Old June 9, 2013, 10:39 AM   #35
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On the rare occasions I hunt with my RBH I limit my shots to 30 yds. I don't like wounding game and for me handgun hunting is like bow hunting. The whole point is to get up close to your quarry.
Now as for targets I'm perfectly comfortable with slinging lead at any distance although with my eyes I'm not any good at it. Still, as long as there is nothing behind the target to worry about it is loads of fun trying long shots with opensighted handguns.
At the range I tend to practice at 25 yds ( the range max for handguns ). If I feel comfortable at that range shorter SD ranges are a breeze.
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Old June 12, 2013, 08:43 AM   #36
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I have to qualify out to 50 yards. I have have taken shots at metal targets up to 100 yards with my 9mm.
What on god's green earth do you think your doing?
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Old June 12, 2013, 12:30 PM   #37
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With open sights 50(ish) yrds

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Old June 12, 2013, 01:10 PM   #38
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COM? probably 25yards with a service pistol.
I can reliably hit a silhouette at 50yards, but my "groups" are too far spread out to really be called "groups" - though a sub 1' group looks impressive if you don't look too carefully..

I imagine I'd do better with my target pistols, but I really only shoot at 25 yards. It's an easier walk to check/reset targets.

My State doesn't have a pistols only hunting season (or not that I know of) so I've never had the call to go hunting with one. We're allowed 1 deer per season - with a few archery exceptions - so between archery, regular, and BP I have more than enough to keep myself occupied.

If I were hunting, I'd want to be pretty close. Through very conservative shot taking (I like the hunt more than I need the meat) I've never had a deer move more than a few feet - a trend I'd like to continue.
si vis pacem para bellum
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Old June 12, 2013, 02:11 PM   #39
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50 meters with a standard 1911 at human sized silhouettes is pretty much my limit.
God bless the U.S. Cavalry
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Old June 12, 2013, 02:54 PM   #40
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I can pretty routinely put repeated rounds well inside a 6" circle at 50 yards with any of my revolvers, open sights, including a snubbie, double action, 2 seconds per round, including reloads. I had an old coach that taught that. Example, 12 rounds in 24 seconds.

If I move out farther, it doesn't really seem to matter if I slow down or fire single action. The groups just get a little bigger. Once the target becomes difficult to see (100 yds plus) the groupings actually improve a little. I think I switch to "ball on post" sighting, using the entire target as the ball. My groups will be a little low, but pretty closely clustered. If I was making a critical shot at 100 yds, I could aim ball on post, then nudge it up just a smidge and probably get things closer to center bullseye.

I"m not a hunter so I can't say how any of that applies to hitting a deer/sheep etc.

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Old June 12, 2013, 06:45 PM   #41
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100 yards with a scoped TC contender in 44 mag.
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Old June 12, 2013, 07:00 PM   #42
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With a revolver off hand, 40 yards. I hunt in wooded areas where long shots don't present themselves to often. If a deer is printed on some heavy paper hanging on a target stand then 100 yards but under hunting conditions 40 yards is my sure shot.
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Old June 13, 2013, 09:22 AM   #43
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With a question like this, Clint Eastwood says it best..."A man has to know his limitations".....I practice beyond 200yards ALOT with my hand loads a 6" open sight S&W 44mag. I am a experienced handgun hunter and shot competitive IPSC so my comfort zone varies on conditions. I am also a follower of Elmer Keith and I share his philosophy of maximum handgun hunting range.

Full story at

Some perspective. That is my big Polaris X2 where the deer dropped.

With a 22lr Hyper Velocity, 40 yards is where I took this grey fox. I wouldn't go much farther not because of the distance but the lack of killing power with a 22lr.

I practice longer range shooting with all my guns...
"I'm a good guy with a gun" What do I care if I give up some freedom or rights?....The Goverment will take care of me. This kind of thinking is now in the majority and it should concern you.

"Ask not what you can do for your country, but what free entitlements you can bleed from your country"

Last edited by Mystro; June 13, 2013 at 09:41 AM.
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Old June 13, 2013, 05:59 PM   #44
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What is the farthest shot you woulf feel comfortable with ahandgun?

I would say 25 yards would be a safe bet but in a defense situation if there more then 10 yards away usually there running...
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Old June 14, 2013, 03:01 AM   #45
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I will not carry a gun for self defense if I cannot consistently hit a 2.5 inch group with it at 15 yards from an offhand stance. I figure that a 2.5 inch circle – about tennis ball size – is what I would need for a proper head shot. If the range happens to be much further than 15 yards I would shift to center of mass.
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Old June 16, 2013, 11:46 AM   #46
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200 yards TC w/ iron sights, shooting 357 Maxies,
100 yards TC w/ iron sights, shooting 38 Spe. and/or 22 LR.
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Old June 16, 2013, 12:39 PM   #47
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I would say the distance you can consistently hit a 6 inch target at. If you shoot over that distance then you are probably going to wound the animal not acceptable in my opinion. Some countries would also have a minimum muzzle energy for shooting deer for example.
For all deer of any species - a minimum calibre of .240 and minimum muzzle energy of 1,700 foot pounds is the legal requirement.
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Old June 18, 2013, 08:02 AM   #48
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Man O' Man we got some shooters here. I have never even tried to shoot any of my pistols past 50 yards (G-20 and a S&W 1911). Could'nt imagine trying to pull off a 100yd shot under stress but maybe I should try now
"Vegetarian, an old Indian word for bad hunter."
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Old June 18, 2013, 08:52 AM   #49
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Could'nt imagine trying to pull off a 100yd shot under stress but maybe I should try now
Perhaps, consider this...

Target at 10 yards. You probably don't aim at the entire target. You aim at a smaller circle within the target, like the X or the 10 ring or if in silhouettes, the A section or blah blah. Whatever the target style, you're aiming at a subset of that larger target.

Now target at 100 yds. You still probably want to aim at a smaller subset of the entire thing, you just can't see the subset. So you have to "imagine" the subset. Just like when you look through typical sights, you imagine the space on both sides of the rear notch to be "about equal". You imagine the top of the front sight being aligned with the top of the rear sight. Do the same with that little gnat nipple sized target way down range. Imagine a line bisecting the circle vertically - that will help you get on target left to right. Imagine a horizontal line across the target, that will help you get on target high or low. Imagine a box or smaller circle within the larger circle. Imagine "equal amounts of circle" on either side of your sight picture.

Send it.

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Old June 18, 2013, 06:50 PM   #50
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With a handgun, since I seldom shoot one at distances greater than 25 yards or so...... I will say 25 yards. I have no doubt of my ability to hit a stationary man-sized target at some greater distances than that, given the time to aim properly....but "comfortable" ? No, maximum "comfortable" distance would be about 25 yards.
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