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#202681 - 10/17/19 02:52 PM Re: Acceptable Group Size for Hunting Purposes [Re: Chance Weldon]
Vance in AK.

Registered: 01/18/04
Posts: 2288
Loc: Kenai, Alaska

I'm with James & Chance and assuming that the gun has acceptable accuracy.
That means the rest is up to me.
If I'm shooting groups I obviously want them as small as possible.
BUT I don't really worry about groups when it comes to establishing my max range. I want to be able to put my FIRST shot on a steel plate (I have 8" round, 8x10 rectangle, & 10" square. I think any of those is fine.) 9 out of 10 times. The max range I can do that at from field positions is my max hunting range. I will often change positions (or at least break & reestablish position) after every shot when practicing with an established -0- and load.

I used to do a lot of traditional bowhunting. When I would go to the backyard to practice I would only take one arrow so there was always a break between shots & the first (only) shot was always the one that counted. All hunting is about the first shot in the kill zone not group size.
i DO understand the importance of firearm & load accuracy as I also shoot precision rifle. Shooting tiny groups at long ranges is a blast but it's a different ball game. A gun & ammo combo that shooting at it's best will extend my max hunting range because it takes one of the variables out of that first shot.
Vance in AK.

Matthew 6:33
"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you."

#202719 - 10/19/19 06:36 AM Re: Acceptable Group Size for Hunting Purposes [Re: Chance Weldon]

Registered: 11/17/18
Posts: 114
Loc: Tx panhandle

content Online
The "paper plate" criteria is probably as good as any under field conditions.

#202728 - 10/19/19 11:17 AM Re: Acceptable Group Size for Hunting Purposes [Re: Memtb460]
Distinguished Master

Registered: 01/18/04
Posts: 5211
Loc: Gillette, Wyoming

 Originally Posted By: Memtb460
Thanks! Some of you helped answer the question, which perhaps was poorly stated. I?m trying to determine what is considered an ethical kill zone size, at expected revolver velocities, on the questioned animals. This in turn will help me determine what is ?my? ethical that range 5 yards or 150 yards! Thanks for any and all info in helping determine what the kill zone size to be! memtb

Determine the the kill zone shape and the kill zone size of the animals where you hunt.
Then, practice from the field rests you actually hunt from.
What handgun will you be hunting with?
Iron or scope?
Ethical distance for you will not be a fixed distance.
It isn't for me anyway.
Physical weariness is a component, the type of shooting rest, the atmospheric conditions (Especially wind).
Your excitement level is part of this as well.
It is not the size of the vitals, plus what you can do on your best day though.
Hopefully this is a better answer.
Most of the time you will be the limiting factor, not the revolver in question.
Ernie the Un-Tactical

#202748 - 10/20/19 08:34 AM Re: Acceptable Group Size for Hunting Purposes [Re: Willicd76]
old hand

Registered: 10/26/08
Posts: 720
Loc: maine

 Originally Posted By: Willicd76
The "paper plate" criteria is probably as good as any under field conditions.

This. Plus it's also comforting knowledge if ya ever attacked by a rouge paper plate
Everything before "but" is B.S.

#203040 - 11/01/19 08:19 AM Re: Acceptable Group Size for Hunting Purposes [Re: bluecow]

Registered: 11/05/08
Posts: 113

I like the paper plate criteria but also like what Vance said. First shot is always the most important and, if you want to take it a step further, it should probably be a cold barrel shot.

There was an article in a hunting magazine a few years back that talked about preparing for deer season where the author recommended practicing twice a week shooting at 8 inch bullseye targets at ranges from 50 to 100 yards from various positions. That circle seems to be the standard and the program could easily be adapted to handgun hunting.

#203061 - 11/01/19 05:51 PM Re: Acceptable Group Size for Hunting Purposes [Re: Memtb460]
old hand

Registered: 02/12/05
Posts: 881
Loc: Central PA

I also use the keep all shots on an 8 inch circle philosophy for big game range limits. As stated by the others this is based on shooter skill and position. I want my gun and ammo to do much better than that from the bench. Dialing this in a bit I suggest that the majority of your shots should be within a 6 inch circle at comfortable shooting ranges.
"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations,... "
Matthew 28:19

Handgun hunter since 1979 - haven't used a rifle since!
HHI member #992, NRA, SCI.

#203065 - 11/01/19 09:22 PM Re: Acceptable Group Size for Hunting Purposes [Re: billa]

Registered: 08/18/19
Posts: 44
Loc: North-Central Wyoming


Thanks guys, I?ve heard about the paper plate criteria for many years. But, wanted to hear from dedicated handgun hunters! Thanks again! memtb
You should not use a rifle that will kill an animal when everything goes right; you should use one that will do the job when everything goes wrong." -Bob Hagel

~Molɔ̀ːn Lab? Sk?la~

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