Hunt Chat

Hunt Chat (
-   Guns and Gear (
-   -   Hunting With Cowboy Loads? (

CHEROKEE COWBOY 07-04-2010 04:22 PM

Hunting With Cowboy Loads?
Are any of us going to be deer hunting with "cowboy" loads
this season? If so, which caliber, load, and type of firearm?

Cherokee Cowboy

wrenchman 07-04-2010 05:19 PM

most cowboy loads are blk powder make sure you clean your gun well when done

GoodOlBoy 07-05-2010 09:40 AM

Yes actually I am using a marlin 336 30-30 winchester using a 90% load of trailboss behind a lasercast 170 grain cast lead. Only moves around 1100+fps but it is the most accurate handload (or storebought) I have ever fired in it.

wrenchman most cowboy loads are NOT black powder, they simulate black powder velocities.


Larryjk 07-05-2010 11:12 AM

Are the "cowboy loads" fast enough to meet the state requirements for energy? A .357 is marginal for deer but still travels faster than a 30-30 at 1100 fps with a 170 grain bullet. Most of the "cowboy" loads today are all for short range rapid fire with fast recovery for followup shots, not for careful placed shots at normal velocity for that caliber.

GoodOlBoy 07-05-2010 12:03 PM

Actually most 357 magnum 158 grain loads are moving at around 1197fps out of a lever gun. My 170 grain 30-30s are moving about the same. Heavier bullet same speed, etc.

Also Texas doesn't have a state energy requirement. Our requirement says no rimfire rounds. Which is probably why the 22lr has taken more deer in this state than any other firearm. I myself took my first deer as a kid with a 22lr while squirrel hunting. Shot him in the neck (proper placement for that round at that target) from about 30 feet. He keeled right over, no problem. The reason why it is illegal is because people who don't know from shot placement would pepper them with 22s and the wounded animal would run off and suffer, and often survive.

the 357 is a good whitetail caliber, as was (and is if you load for them) the 32-20.

My 30-30 is putting out more energy than my compound bow. I have taken deer with it and a cowboy 45 colt 250 grain rnfp lead (moving at . . . . wait for it. . . . 1180+- fps)


GoodOlBoy 07-05-2010 03:18 PM

I will put an adendum in here for Wrench, Goex Black Dawge cartiridges are black powder. The rest of the cartridges I know of on the market are not, and I don't know of a single cowboy action shooter who reloads using black powder (I know there are probably a few but I have never met or seen one)


wrenchman 07-05-2010 06:31 PM

Thats ok i was thinking they were all blk powder thinking it was what made them cow boy load i new of the goex i just assumed they all were i gess i should check before i speek.
So i leerned somthing new.
Buy the way we are allowed to use blk power cartriges in hand guns durin our blk powder deer seasen.

GoodOlBoy 07-06-2010 09:22 AM

Oh you are a lucky lucky duck then wrench, here if it don't load down the muzzle you can't use it in black powder only season (which we don't get in east Texas). What make it a cowboy load is that it is cast lead moving at blackpowder velocities. I personally use trailboss powder which is a bit dirtier in pistols than some smokeless powders, but a WHOLE lot cleaner than black.


Mr. 16 gauge 07-06-2010 04:51 PM

I guess a lot depends on caliber, bullet style (SWC vs RN), type of weapon, range it will be used, conditions it will be used, how accurate you are with your chosen weapon, ect.

If it was a big (.44 or .45 cal) bullet with a big meplat, and ranges were short and the deer are on the smaller size, I wouldn't have a problem with it.
On the other hand, I feel that it is the duty of every hunter to use the best ammo/cartridge combo possible to make a clean kill, so if a modern version of the same cartridge is 'better', i.e. more velocity, ect, then I would suggest going with that.


dovehunter 07-07-2010 09:31 PM


Originally Posted by GoodOlBoy (Post 336830)
...I don't know of a single cowboy action shooter who reloads using black powder (I know there are probably a few but I have never met or seen one)


Surprisingly most of the those who shoot cowboy action at my club tell me that they handload with black powder. I can't imagine why - all the extra effort at cleaning, etc. - just to have a big, smelly cloud after the shot. I Just figured it was a cowboy action thing.

GoodOlBoy 07-08-2010 10:38 AM

Must be a style thing for them. Like I said I know there are probably a few who do, I just never met one.

Remember that deer are actually pretty delicate critters, but it is ALL about where you put the shot. 32-20 is a pretty light round by todays standards, and I have seen it take ALOT of deer cleanly in my family over the years. If a 32-20 will take it, I can take it with a 38/357 without a problem. Me I hunt deer mostly with 45 colt or 30-30 winchester nowdays (or a shotgun every great once in awhile)


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:20 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.