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7.62x39, a deer caliber or not?

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  • #16
    I have effectively hunted with 7.62x39 AR platform. In Texas Hill country most shots are less than 100yds. At this range each deer I have shot with ZombieMax rounds fell where they were shot. Effective round.

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    • #17
      I have hunted deer from North Carolina to Maine with my sks shooting 154 soft point "junk ammo" as some folks call it.I am also a bow hunter so I understand limitations I couldn't begin to tell you how many deer I have taken with the sks and have had no issues. the shooter has way more to do with hunting than the gun. the ammo is so cheap that you can go shoot a few hundred rounds for $50 and with that type of experiance you should have no issue hitting the vitals.Most deer here in maine are shot at less than 100 yards and at that range the sks is deadly.don't let anyone tell you any different you can study all the charts you want and read all the books but unless I'm in the stand looking over a blueberry field with the bolt action 30.06 I'm hunting with the good old sks.

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      • #18
        Absolutely. More than adequate, within its limitations. My hand loads make it similar to the Venerable 30 WCF. I use .310 Hornaday sp over a whack of 4198.
        To date have taken 4 of our heavy bodied, north Sask. jumpers. All but one at about the hundred yards. All but one went down at the shot. The other ran so I put one more thru the goody box and it gave up the ghost. I use an Norinco SKS sporterized with a nice Butler creek and open sights. It is amazingly accurate.
        This year I will go with a mod 96/44 and a nother handloading of 240 gr XTP and 24 gr H 110. I anticipate dramatic results inside the same 100 yards. I really like the thump and I am getting the same wonderful accuracy. Don't be stupid.. But be confident. If you aren't practice more till you are. Regards all.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Steve Carol View Post
          The 7.62x39MM will obviously work as a deer rifle within a decent range. In a modern bolt action (like the Savage or CZ rifles that chamber it), it will be very accurate. Premium factory ammo or handloads (especially) with good bullet construction for deer (not varmint bullets or FMJ) are a must. The 7.62x39MM has significantly more energy than a .44 magnum in a rifle or revolver. It has nearly the energy as a .243 winchester (which with a decent shot will usually drop a deer in its tracks). The 7.62x39MM has nearly equal momentum to the .243 and a larger bullet diameter. Within 200 yards, you will be fine IF you can shoot relatively well. Many people in hunting circles try to out humane or out macho each other, and this is why you see so many people thinking deer are tougher than they are and you need at least a .270 win to kill them reliably. You end up with a bunch of people (and shot deer) that are worse off because they have a 7mm mag that they are afraid of and can't shoot well. My go to deer rifle is a 25-06 and it kills deer like lightning strikes.
          Wow guys really. I lived in SW Virginia. For Deer I prefer the 6mm .23 caliber. But we use to get Deer permits 15 at a time, for Deer because of Crop Damage. ( yes we used all our meat). Our preferred DEER weapon was a .22 caliber. I have killed over 100 Large Bucks and Does with nothing but a .22 and a spotlight (legally). All you have to do is hit the Head. So saying that a 7.62x39 won't take down a Deer, your mis informed. Have a great day. Stay safe and shot straight.

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          • #20
            I have a Norinco SKS with a machined receiver, I can hit a golf ball at 100 yards , every time . This cartridge is great for Whitetail .. but you do need a soft point bullet . Anyone that tells you different has never used one . Sometimes I shoot them in the neck and they drop like a load of coal

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            • #21
              Jesus Christ, there is so many scientists trying to answer this question of lethality of a cartridge that has been killing humans and deer probably before any of us were born... I’ve hunted people and deer with an AKm and can personally attest to its effectiveness and ability at longer ranges and accuracy. I’ve alsi been in the receiving end of both the 5.45 and 7.62 and they are just as capable as most intermediate cartridges. The same goes with any rifle regardless of muzzle energy, caliber or practical accuracy, if you train and become adequate with the rifle by applying proper fundamentals you can make hits at well beyond what the rifle is designated at. I’ve put rounds repeatedly and “minute of man” accuracies at out to 600 yards with irons and also with a red dot with zero magnification...as far as comparing it to the .30-30 the differences are negligible at best, but what I can say is a lot more living thing have been killed with the 7.62x39 than probably any other cartridge. There are more aks in the world than any platform.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by libertyfirst View Post
                I'm a big fan of the 30-30 Winchester and I feel that this is as light as most hunters should go. The 7.62x39 doesn't measure up to the 30-30 in my opinion. I agree with Ed that the right hunter with a good rifle and good hand loads would probably be alright.
                The 7.62 has been killing people for over half a century, the difference between the two is negligible at best.

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                • #23
                  I hunt with an XCR-L 7.62x39 its incredibly effective, I prefer it over my .308 tbh.
                  In my personal experience my .308 will do less damage to the vitals with the same factory load (federal power shok) then the 7.62x39. I suppose the theory is that the larger load travels so fast that it doesnt have the chance to expand where the lighter load will blow a heart to pieces and wont necessarily be a through and through, this I find favorable as I'm sure we can all agree that internal damage is far more important then blowing a leg off . I find the deer still run just as far once hit but I actually feel a lot better about the trauma caused by the lighter load. Ive hopefully uploaded the photo of the heart of this years buck I shot.

                  plain and simple its a very effective round, those who say its not have no idea what they are talking about.
                  Attached Files

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                  • #24
                    Ok I had to chime in with will a 7.62x39 drop a deer? Well lets see ask most that have served what they think of this caliber. While is doesn't have the accuracy of the .223 it certainly has stopping power. I read quite a few that compare it to the 30-30 and say that unless you hit a deer just right it won't drop a deer. My response is bull crap. I have used my Ruger mini 30 for years and gotten a deer almost every year. In fact the .223 will drop a deer as well with through and throughs. I have used my AR-15 or Ruger min-14 ranch rifle for deer when my shoulder could not take a high caliber round. Yes the range of the 7. 62 an issue but under 200 yards it will do the job. The SKS was used in Vietnam to our regret and seemed to be able to stop a human with little to no trouble creating some horrible wounds. Now before everyone starts to holler we all have our own opinions right? My favorite round for deer is the .308 for longer range and hitting power. But as a brush gun the 7.62x39 will work just fine and most of those shots are under 150 yards hence brush. It does as much damage as any 30-30 or .35 and I have used all of them for years. I live in the Adirondack Mountains in upstate NY and rarely will we get the chance for long range shots. Any round will work depending on the type of ammo you use. And even though I'm not a spring chicken anymore I try lol. It comes down to you use what you like or what you have. In the end as long as there is meat in the freezer that is what matters.

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                    • #25
                      I doubt folks were getting shot w hunting bullets. So the war stuff is of no merit and even more silly to mention.

                      As a sporting round yeah it works.
                      Deer are thin skinned.
                      Everything has pluses and minuses and .....limits.

                      The question of the round being deer worthy is a joke. Something to BS around a campfire ot sell magazines.

                      A good bullet put in the lungs of a deer within range is what matters. Lots of leeway in that too.





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                      • #26
                        I have 3 rifles in 7.62X39 and would not hesitate to take a deer up to 200 yds.

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                        • #27
                          In many places it's the only center fire rifle caliber, and used to shoot all animals, and even worse they only have hard cased military type ammo. I prefer Barnes and a regular hunting rifle but people do make it work for all sized of game. The SKS is also common in those countries and has a longer barrel increasing the speed a little.

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                          • #28
                            It depends on where you're at. East of the Mississippi... definitely. x39 will do the job in the eastern woodland forests, brush, and swamp lands, no problem. West of the Mississippi, in the high desert and and mountain ridge tops? Go with something bigger, farther, faster.

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                            • #29
                              I would not hunt deer with a 7.62 39 regardless of bullet design. not a .223 either. The 30-30 with the hornady tipped bullets is in my mind an ideal short range set up.

                              I see a lot of names from the past on this post, where are these people now ?

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                              • #30
                                I have used this round the last 2 years and harvested 5 deer with it. Not one made it more then 30 feet without dropping (3 of the 5 were 100-140 yards). The picture is from last weekend and my gun opener was done in 2 hours. I have been using Hornady SST BLACK 123 grain. Click image for larger version

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