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Discussion Starter #1
I had a vigorus debate at the gun shop the other day about cast verses jacketed bullets. (I can't believe I get paid to talk guns, life is good) I relayed the following experiances.
    Back in "86" ohio had its first deer season that allowed handguns. That year I hit a doe in the neck at 80 yards with a 180gr hollow point from a SBH. It left a massive surface wound  and punctured the cartoid artery. The deer went some 100 yrds and when I found her she was still alive. I shot her in the head from 15 yards, the derned bullet bounced off!! I walked up on her and cut her throat. The bullet totally failed. I could see the jacket in the wound, had a fragment ( there were many) not cut the artery I would have lost her and she surely would have suffered. Had I chest shot her I imagine she would have died much later probably of infection.
    I switched to a 240 gr jacketed hollow point and used that until 1992 shooting 10 deer with it. All died ok but only after a bit of a run and a truely unimpressive blood trail. None expanded to any degree and only two exited. As a whole I was not very impressed.
    In 1992 I was at the range. The backstop is mostly clay and it had been raining for two weeks. I fired a jacketed HP bullet into a relitivly un disturbed part of the back stop. There was a disrupted spot but nothing more. I had been useing a 310 grain cast bullet as a plinking bullet, usually with 9gr of uniqe. I had loaded some with 20 grains of H110 just to try it. I fired one of these next to the spot that I had fired the jacketed bullet. The back splash was impressive. Upon examination I found what appeared to be the size of a ground squirrel hole. I put a stick in it and found that the hole was over a foot deep I also found that the cavity inside was 3 inches in diameter.
  Since then I've use that cast bullet ( its got a fairly big meplat) on 15 deer of the 135-175 poiund class. All have died quikly with only two requireing trailing. These I hit a little far back in the rear of the rib cage and liver. On both of those the blood trail was impressive as were all wounds. I don't mean penitrated organs, I mean utterly destroyed organs. Only one bullet was recoverd, it was on a quartering toward shot, that bullet lodged under the pelvis on the off side.  Jacketed bullets are great in rifles but not needed, and infact counter productive, in handguns.
    I still use that 180 grain, it's death on woodchucks  
 

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Experience speaks for itself!

A good friend of mine has a saying... "It's hard to talk horse-sense with a jackass!"  

And here we go, when talking guns with someone who hasn't had the experience you have, it is utterly impossible to reason away the myths that have been instilled into the shooting public about the merits and virtues of JHP's for handgun hunting, especially the light frangable variety, when they have no experience of their own.

While to the uneducated, that super high velocity of the .44-180's shure looks inviting... until you see the lack of performance due to penetration failure.  Yes, lots of deer are killed with JHP's in the 240g weight as well, but they sure aren't my choice.  I prefer, as you have found, that large 1"+ wound channels all the way through game tend to anchor it more authoritatively than any expanding jacketed handgun bullet I've ever used.

Now, in all fairness, since I've been in the cast game for so very long now, I've not tried the new Nosler Partitions and Barnes bullets on game out of a handgun... I have heard good things about them, so without actual field experience, I can't say anything pro or con about them. There have been some great advances made in the performance of jacketed hunting bullets, and there are many fans of various jacketed hunting bullets... from folks who do hunt and bring venison home with their revolvers.

Perhaps I'm just from the old school... if it aint broke, don't fix it!  I know that wide meplat heavy cast bullets out of a handgun will fill a deer tag... every time I do my part right.  No questions about angle or penetration, just meat on the gambrel.

God Bless,

Marshall
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I don't really believe that jacketed bullets will ever beat cast in a revolver. The math just doesn't say so. When a bullet leaves a barrel it has all the energy it will ever have. To deform that bullet requires energy that can only be derived from velocity. No, it is the same as the 9mm game, spend tons of money and time trying to get them to do what a current item already does.  
 
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