Who uses specialty handguns @ long range for big game?


Jun 18, 2007
NE Wyoming
Curious to know how many of you use specialty handguns for big game? Kind of handgun, cartridge, optics, and optimum range for game hunted.
Anyone here hunt big game exclusively with handguns?
I'm new to the board. Good to be with people of like mind (Long-Ranges)

[ 03-08-2003: Message edited by: xphunter ]
I guess I need to to define where long range begins and ends for me with big game (varmints are a different story).
Beyond 300 yards to 700 yards.
I know that is not much compared to what some your rigs do, but I am working with a smaller, lighter package.
My definition of "longrange handgunning" for BIG Game would be a little differnt than yours.
With a 454 Casull and open sights, 75yds seems like longrange.
With a scope sighted, bolt action pistol, in a bottle necked cartridge; just getting out to 300yds (on big game) would be long range in my opinion.
I can't really image too many specialty handguns that could provide enough terminal energy to effectively take big game at the distances that you have mentioned. However, I'm sure somewhere, someone, must have an exotic hand-rifle that is chambered in 300 whatever magnum that would kill anything at any distance.
Varmint Hunter,
I agree with your statement about the FA 454. I used to have one and hunt with it, but mine did have a 2 power Leupold or 4 power Leupold on it. You tagged me on the 30 Caliber Magnum comment. I have a 7.82 Patriot (Lazzeroni Short Action Cartridge) in one of my XP's. It moves 150 grain out of my barrel @ 3,000 f.p.s.. I know that is not much compared to some of the 30 cal rifle specs, but in a specialty handgun you are not going to do much better with a 30 caliber. It has a 3-12 Burris LER with Ballistic Plex Reticule, coupled with the technology of Chrono's, ballistic software, rangefinders, and field practice @ ranges intended. When all of those factors are coupled with a "tricked handgun" the possibility of accurate hits @ long range become very possible. Finding the right bullet construction that will perform over a wide variety of velocities is of course another hurdle that needs to be crossed.
There's a new S&W MONSTER MAGNUM out model 500 in a new 50-caliber magnum. New X frame with a 8-3/8" barrel shooting a 275-400gr bullets might work for you.
Crow Mag,
I will soon have a 6.5-284 close to what you described within the next month. It is a tight neck 17 inch heavy Krieger barrel (1-8 twist) with a Vais brake (GTR Version), H-S Precision Stock, titanium firing pin, etc. It is being set-up for the 142 SMK. Hart Front Rest with their Accuracy Asset on the stock to help make things more square and consistent off the bags. I have used a XP-100 with 15.75 inch barrel in 284 Win. for about the last 12 years for big game including elk. It has shot some nice groups out to 700 yards with Nosler's 140 BT's. This is also the bullet I use for prarie dogs to deer sized critters. I use 140 Partitions for elk. MV is 2750 so I am basically shooting the equivelant of a 7mm-08 rifle. Elk is the main reason I went to the Patriot cartridge.
Before I built my 284 Win., I used to use a 7-08 XP-100 back in the late 80's, but it was so accurate and pleasant shooting my hunting buddy had to have it and that is when I had the 284 built. I have never used any of the JDJ cartridges, but used to have a 16 inch Encore in 338 Win. Mag, but it never had the accuracy I wanted.
Thanks for the input on the Leupold scopes.
The 7-08 is a rear grip with a R.W. Hart trigger and shilen barrel. Sounds like you have a interesting project I am very interested in your findings on the 6.5-284 Powder and velocities with the 140g bullets out ot a 17 in barrel. I had my 6.5-284 rifle built for the 142g SMK and found the 140g AMAX is what it likes and the AMAX expands better than the 142g SMK on varmints. You may want to try a box of the 140g AMAX and see if your gun likes them. I am looking for a custom stock with a 3 in wide forearm and a pistol grip out of laminated wood construction. I would like the front of the forearm to be 3 in from the end of the barrel with out the brake on the barrel.
Crow Mag
Crow Mag,
Virgin Valley who does a lot of barrels for Encores and Contender's also makes custom stocks for XP-100's. At least they had someone about 8 months ago who did. You explain what you want and they will build it. "Virgin Valley Jeff" posts a lot on the www.accuratereloading.com under the single shot pistol forum. Since I don't have any TC products, I don't have their contact info anymore. But close to a year I spoke with their stock maker and it sounds like you can get exactly what you want--but it won't be cheap. I will keep in touch when I finally get things up and running with the 6.5-284.

If you like shooting at long Range there is going to be a Long Range Handgun Clinic (Shooting out to a 1,000 yards) put on by Don Bower. Date will likley be July 7-10 (Mon-Thurs). Cost will be $200 you are responsible for food and lodging. Don will also supply handguns and ammo. Of course you can bring and shoot your own. I went last year and had a great time.
I have hunted with a handcannon I just got into long range rifle hunting in the last year I like the 300 savage and 375 JDJ for 200 to 300 yard big game hunting and have a 7-08 XP and have shot out to 500 yards with 168g SMK I am thinking about putting a 6.5-284 barrel on it with a bigger stock for longer shots I would use a 16 to 19 in barrel 1.250 no taper 8 twist and a brake to get the weight up so I could shoot a rifle scope (8.5-25-50 LRT scope) and not get thumper in the head with the scope. I would use the 142g SMK or 140g AMAX bullet. The scopes I have used for my pistols are the 12x Leupold 24x Leupold 4x Leupold pistol scope.
Crow Mag
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