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Best 9mm for White Tail

9247 Views 97 Replies 49 Participants Last post by  IAhunter
Before everyone jumps down my throat yes it is legal in Virginia. In Virginia the requirements are that it is greater than 23caliber and more than 350ftlbs of energy.

Secondly we are talking small deer < 100lbs. I have been practicing for this for a very long time. My maximum range will be 25yards as that is the farthest distance that I can consistently keep all my rounds within a 6" circle. I will be hunting with a shotgun but if the deer gets close enough and presents a perfect broad side shot then I do plan on taking the shot.

If a hollow point then it needs to penetrate farther than most hollow points as deer are tougher than we are. For that reason I've settled on the Hornady American Gunner 124gr +P. Based on the tests I've seen these tend to penetrate to around 18" of ballistics gel.

Another round could be the Underwood 115hr +P Extreme Penetrator. I'm not sure if these rounds are all hype but the thought behind this round is that it would break any bone that it comes into contact with and would allow for a clean pass through insuring more rapid blood loss.

Lastly I'm considering just going with a Standard 124gr NATO spec round. This round should also allow for a pass through and should also Yaw creating a more devastating wound channel than the Extreme Penetrator.

I've tested all 3 of these rounds and I'm the most accurate with the Hornady load and closely followed by the NATO spec load. The least accurate for me is the Underwood but even it keeps all shots within the required 6" circle at 25 yards.

PS. Based on everything I can find there is no requirement to have an expanding round for hunting in VA like there is in some states.

Thanks in advance.
~Quigley

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· Previously Jisbell40
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I had exactly the situation you described last year. Doe 75 yards away, solid shot with a 175gr Sierra Match King, 100 yards of tracking through briars and across a creek. Was dead when I got to her. I feel terrible if a deer suffers. In comparison, about half the deer I’ve shot broadside with a ballistic tip 7mm-08 were DRT, and the other half ran less than 30 yards. Hydrostatic shock is real.
Comparing a ballistic tip to a SMK isn’t logical. One is designed as hunting bullet the other is designed to poke holes in paper. The two are not the same by any means
 

· Previously Jisbell40
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I agree. Still a helluva lot more juice than any 9mm round available!
I totally agree. IMO a 357 is the bare minimum for a deer. But the man says a 45 (max 592 ft lbs) and a 9mm (max 502 ftlbs) are the same in energy. So I’m not going to try and convince him that 60% of a 357 isn’t sufficient for deer.
 

· Registered
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You posted the thread and asked for opinions.....here's mine:

You have better guns suited for the task of hunting. I don't give a crap if 9mm is legal or not.....it's a bad idea.

You show a complete disrespect for the game you are hunting by using a 9mm....regardless the load in it.

This is a dumb idea. If you want to carry the 9mm for a ccw while hunting, that is one thing. Intending to use it on deer is irresponsible and poor judgment.

You asked for opinions....there it is.
 

· Elite Member
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Discussion Starter · #86 ·
You posted the thread and asked for opinions.....here's mine:

You have better guns suited for the task of hunting. I don't give a crap if 9mm is legal or not.....it's a bad idea.

You show a complete disrespect for the game you are hunting by using a 9mm....regardless the load in it.

This is a dumb idea. If you want to carry the 9mm for a ccw while hunting, that is one thing. Intending to use it on deer is irresponsible and poor judgment.

You asked for opinions....there it is.
This thread is almost a year old at this point. Which means you had to actually be searching for this topic for whatever reason. So were you looking for pistol hunting threads just so you could troll them? Very odd first response on a necrothread.

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This thread is almost a year old at this point. Which means you had to actually be searching for this topic for whatever reason. So were you looking for pistol hunting threads just so you could troll them? Very odd first response on a necrothread.

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Nope....it was at the top of the page on the hunting forum.

I wasn't looking at ages of threads nor searching for topics.....simply browsing through the sub forums.

Not a troll.

Just a hunter who thinks a 9mm is a poor choice to deer hunt with.
 

· Elite Member
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Discussion Starter · #88 ·
Nope....it was at the top of the page on the hunting forum.

I wasn't looking at ages of threads nor searching for topics.....simply browsing through the sub forums.

Not a troll.

Just a hunter who thinks a 9mm is a poor choice to deer hunt with.
Well thanks for letting me know your thoughts a year later. I'll make sure to take them into account as soon as I find a time machine that'll take me back to last October.

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Discussion Starter · #91 ·
So...necrothread revival.

Did you accomplish what you set out to do? Last October?

Tell us how it went. What did you use? I’m also curious to learn what pistol you used and how you did.
Actually yes but I wound up using my 6in GP100 357magnum and it worked quite well.

I did by a 17L with a 6.5in after market barrel for this upcoming season though. With Underwood ammo it appears that I will be pushing this 9mm to around 500ftlbs of energy which will be plenty for Virginia white tail.

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· real dogs
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An arrow and a pistol bullet inflict very different wounds. A broadhead cuts a very large wound channel the entire way through a chest cavity--more often than not completely passing through the animal. The broadhead might have a 1-1.25" width but it will produce a wound that is 2-3 inches wide because its slower velocity and heavier mass (arrows might weigh 500-700 grains and run between 250-300 fps depending) )tends to pull and stretch tissue with it along its path.

Handgun bullets act like punch presses and basically punch holes in flesh. Most handgun bullets--yes including hollow points-do not produce anywhere near the damage a well placed broadhead i capable of.... Rifle bullets from a high power rifle act very differently than handgun bullets btw. I've shot more than a few deer with handguns and even in the larger calibers like .44 mag or .480 using expanding bullets (though I prefer a hardcast Keith or LBT bulet for deer when using a handgun) a they simply don't create massive wound channels like an arrow or a high power rifle for that matter. They basically punch holes..

I'd take getting shot by a handgun bullet over a broadhead arrow any day of the week..

In short the wound characteristics are completely different...and in general terms a broadhead is a far more effective/humane killing tool than a 9mm handgun provided the archer knows his tool. I've killed a lot of deer with a bow....

If I recall correctly emergency room data is typically 80% survival rate on gunshot wounds. I think we can make the wild assumption that the majority of gunshot wounds are 9mm. On the other hand mortality for stabbing victims tends to run about 80%. Food for thought.
 

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Discussion Starter · #93 ·
If I recall correctly emergency room data is typically 80% survival rate on gunshot wounds. I think we can make the wild assumption that the majority of gunshot wounds are 9mm. On the other hand mortality for stabbing victims tends to run about 80%. Food for thought.
if that is in fact accurate then yes it is but I've never heard that before so please share the source?

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So the timing of the last 2 posts seem odd? I am not sure I would choose a 3 yr old thread to make my first post in but whatever. Can a IT geek fix the algorithm, the bot interface no workee correctly.
 

· "Cynical Little me"
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If you want to be a sport hand gun hunter do it correctly with .357, .41, .44, .460 or .500 magnum in long barrels.
Please do not look at the bare minimum to get the job done.

The game you pursue deserves and honorable clean quick kill.
Always nice to hear from an ethical hunter.
 

· Venor ergo sum
"94% of mass shootings occur in gun free zones" CPRC
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Marginal marksmanship and a marginal cartridge to punch holes in a living critter for bragging rights. What could possibly go wrong?
Can it be done with a 9mm, yes. Should you, probably not. I have more respect for the game I hunt than to use a very marginal caliber.

Jeez, I fell for the necrothread, again. 🤪
 
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