Finding a rifle cartridge that can be loaded in a single-shot pistol to shoot 200-300 yards is not all that difficult, depending on what you want it to be capable of, at that distance. Check out the JDJ line of cartridges as well as the work done by Gary Reeder...both make a good array of very powerful rounds, specifically for hunting with a pistol. Another resource who has done quite a bit of work along these lines, and is easier to work with, in my opinion, is Mike Bellm. His 309Bellm round might be just the thing you're looking for and if it's still not quite powerful enough, he'll be able to point you in the right direction.
Keep in mind that the actions most often used for this kind of shooting, the Encore and Contender/G2, benefit from a rimmed case, so many of the traditional rifle cartridges can be used but you're better off with something that has a rim, for headspace. A good example would be choosing a 307 Winchester (rimmed) instead of a 308. You'll also want a good grip and forearm along with a ported muzzle or brake, because handguns capable of that kind of performance can be tough to control, without those improvements.
The only game in town is the T/C Encore. It has the broadest choice of calibers and aftermarket supply.
That being said, you may have a hard time finding someone to make a barrel in .300 WSM. Bullberry Barrel Works just flat out won't make them. Way too much for most shooters to handle.
And y'know, it's unnecessary. An Encore with a 15" barrel in .308 Win/6.5 Swede/270Win/.338 Federal or just about any of the wildcats produced by J.D. Jones at SSK Industries will work very nicely at the distances you have specified.
There are other possibilities other than T/C Encore or Contender. I have a 375 JDJ in a Competitor pistol i.e. 8mm Remington Magnum case necked up to 375 caliber. Got it in a deal for the pistol and two barrels. Nobody I've shown the cartridge too nor myself has the intestional fortitude to fire some of the loaded rounds that came in the deal. I recently found someone who's willing to try a shot so will have to change barrels setting it back up.
My mistake pruhdlr, it should be 375 JRS not JDJ. To dammed many new latest & greatest wildcats that are at best marginally better than an existing cartridge. As with most wildcats they will end in the trash heap of lost glory failing to attract enough interest to make commerical operations feasible.
My first hunting pistol was TC Contender in .35 Rem used for whitetail. I had a burris 2.5 -7 put on it 25 years ago and it still shoots a 1in. group with 180 Hornady SSP. The Burris 2.5 - 7 had very good LER. I purchased 2 new Burris 3 - 12 scopes last summer and had to take them back. The eye relief was to short. I stopped by the Burris factory and talked with the service mgr. He had no problem taking both back. I purchased the Leupold 2-8 for my Encore .30-06AI 15 in. pistol and it works great. We will be pig hunting in N. Tx in two weeks and this will be my primary choice for the trip, .30-06AI with 165 gr NBT traveling at 2724 fps. Bottom line Leupold 2-8 pistol scope is the best on the market IMO..
I've got a Leupold on one of my TC barrels and a Bushnell on another...I "think" the Leupold is better, but they both have performed flawlessly. I notice Grinder has not replied to this thread since posting it. Sometimes I wonder how often we put a lot of thought and energy into these posts when the OP is long gone.
Don Bower shoots his wildcat - based on the 307 Winchester at 1/2 mile in the TC Contender pistol. You can read about this in the 1997 issue of the Handguns Anual.
There were several long range handgun shooters on this forum and there are several threads in the past which touch on long range handgunning.
I've never shot a 300mag pistol and would decline any offer based upon my experince of shooting 2 different 30-06 pistols. Just plain too painful and I believe will do permenant damage to your wrist and hand if shot often.
I own a 45/70 pistol and can manage its recoil if not maxed out. I shoot 300gr bullets at around 1650fps I beleive, just under the max by 4grs of Hogden322.
300 yds is a long range to hunt with a pistol, very long. I've shot pictol from professional benchrest with Leupold 2-8 pistol scope, the best scope in my belief. I would never even attempe a shot at a deer at that range even if the pistol were capable of killing it. 200yds maybe if you were equipped with the right rest and had trained at that range, but even a 100yds is a long ways with a handgun.
Instread of 300mag I would consider something smaller, such as .308 or 7mm08 or even .243Win, and of couse using 150 grain or smaller bullets. Save your hands, you only have two of them.
I’m sorry; I am a poor communicator at times. I did not intend to suggest that Don hunted at this distance.
There is a growing group of serious long range target shooters shooting both jacketed and cast bullets at long range.
There is a thread here on Beartooth where we discussed the quest for the 1” 100-yard revolver. This is and extremely difficult goal to achieve.
I only intended to point out that some are shooting at quite a distance.
Yes Slim I have that same problem. I once chatted with a guy who shot Contenders at 500yds. He even provided some kind of proof which I have forgotten. He was of course shooting custom centerfires, but I don't remember what caliber nor the group size he got, but I do remember it was quite impressive. I'm also aware as you are about some peoples talents of shooting at long long ranges, but those folks are few and far between. As much experience as I've had and I am a retired experience benchrest competiter I have never shot in that kind of competition private or public.
So I apologize for my lack of communication here as well, but I believe the OP is looking for a an effective shooting pistol, so with that I will again bow out of this conversation. By the way, if one cares to read, there is another thread in this subforum where nearly the same thing is discussed I like reading too
Well the OP probably figures we are a crazy….
I had difficulty getting it straight in my little bird brain that we were discussing hunting “big game” with a handgun at lets say – 175 to 200 yards. It can be done but I am not good enough to do it.
I have a bull barrel 10” Hornet barrel for one of my TC frames. This barrel has not been off this frame in years and it has a 6X pistol scope with a ¼ min dot and cross hair. Someday I hope to shoot well enough to use this handguns potential. I have a few friends who can shoot this set up very well and I continue to have hope I will measure up one day. If you successfully hunt the smaller varmints and 200-yards with a handgun – even if using a bipod – you are a much better handgunner than I am. Without a bipod, prone and using a sandbag forward rest I have trouble hitting picket pin ground squirrels at 75 yards. I miss more than I hit but I make them duck or jump!
I'm going to go out on a limb here and suggest your lack of confidence with your Contender has more to do with the round it's chambered for than your own limitations. I've read a lot of your posts and you clearly know what you're doing, so why are you choosing to hamstring yourself with that inefficient and temperamental little Hornet?!
Have the barrel cut to something with some sizzle and accuracy, like a 223, 225Win, or heck, even the K Hornet. I shoot varmints with my 6.5JDJ at 200 yards and hit 50% or more, on a calm day. There's no reason in the world you should be missing more than you hit, at 75 yards. What kind of groups do you get at 100 yards?
From the bench using a good rest which supports the entire gun this barrel will shoot less than 2” on most days using good bullets and well prepared brass. There have been days when I have put 5 shots inside 1 ½” but not many. I have several standard hornets and one Improved hornet.
Beartooth board member Assassin (David White) chambered a 22” 17 Ackley Hornet for my wife and it is a real shooter.
I am working my way toward a 225 Winchester barrel using 375 Winchester brass. The brass is easy to form – I have several form dies. Assassin has made up a number of these rifles on various actions and they shoot well.
I don’t see well due to an airplane accident back in the mid ‘70’s and it is a bit of a challenge for me to use the handgun scopes. I’m working on it and getting better but it comes hard. It is very humbling to shoot beside my wife as the girl can shoot small groups but would rather shoot clay birds and then bust the chips.
I feel ya, Slim...my 12 year-old daughter just started shooting 2 years ago, but with those young eyes, her 22LR groups have me remembering the good ol' days when I didn't have to adjust my glasses three times just to get a decent sight picture!
David did some work for me recently, and I'll be sending him 2 more barrels this year. If I can find a cheap Hornet or 223 barrel for the SB2 H&R frame, I plan on having him rechamber it to 225Win. I had never considered using 375 Winchester brass to make 225 Win cases. I use the 225 case for my 6.5JDJ wildcat, so I have over 300 cases and 180 of them are still new, in the bag.
Now I'm going to be trying to figure out how the 375 Winchester brass fits into this picture!
Well, I had better get busy! The only advantage to the 375 – I think, is that I have some. The 375 case is rated at 52,000 CUP and the 225 case is rated for 50,000 CUP but I don’t believe it will be a factor in my loading.
With the 375 cae I expect to have to ream the necks so it is not a lot of advantage to use the 375 case.
I recently bought a full length die set with a neck sizer included so I am committed or committable…
It also looks like you'd have to turn down the rim on the .375, as it is .506" and the 225 is only .473". For what it's worth, Midway has plenty of 225 brass, in stock, for about $.50/case...a little less, if you buy 500 of them.
A forum community dedicated to Sport shooters, owners and enthusiasts. Come join the discussion about optics, hand casting bullets, hunting, gunsmithing, styles, reviews, accessories, classifieds, and more!