Pulled The Trigger on a Deer





Er… Click???

That’s not how it’s supposed to go.


Well now I know that I can actually pull the trigger on a living breathing animal. So at least I’ve learned that.

ETA:ย Thank you for all the feedback and advice! ย I really do appreciate it.

30 thoughts on “Pulled The Trigger on a Deer”

  1. Uh, wow. I absolutely cannot count how many deer I’ve shot and that has never happened. Actually, on factory grade (read, not Wolf) ammo I don’t think that has ever happened. Nothing like spending your lotto chance odds on bad luck. ๐Ÿ˜‰ You’ll get ’em next time.
    45er´s last blog post ..Sausage, Phase 2: The Drying

  2. With all due respect… I hope you aren’t hunting deer with V-max. Please look into bonded rounds like Barnes TSX or similar.
    ZerCool´s last blog post ..WTF?

        1. About the only round for the .223 that I would consider adequate in Hornady’s current line up is the 55 grain Superformance GMX. The V-max is meant for varmints and has too rapid expansion qualities for decent penetration in a white tail IMHO. I also second ZerCool’s suggestion of a Barnes TXS or similar. I hunted white tails for a number of years, but have always used bit larger of a caliber. Maybe the deer in my home state of Maine are bigger then the ones in OK. But please use a better suited bullet for more humane kills :o)

          1. Thank you so much! I believe you do have much bigger deer up there, but I will look into better suited ammo. I really appreciate all the feedback.

      1. On re-read in the dim light of morning, my reply last night was a bit brusque. I apologize – I was on my tablet and fighting it for spelling. Not an excuse, mind you, just circumstance.

        Now that I’m in front of a real computer, a more-better answer. As Daniels already said, Vmax won’t hold together. They’re pretty fragile bullets, short of being frangible, and smacking a rib or shoulder blade on the way in will turn them into shards that don’t penetrate very well. The deer may well die, but it’ll do it a day or two and several miles later.

        Bonded bullets – things like Remington CoreLokt, Hornady Interlocks/Interbonds, and the like – are designed to take that hit without shedding the jacket and fragmenting. They’ll create one consistent wound channel through the deer and mash the necessary vitals on the way through.

        One step further, perhaps in a slightly different direction, is the solids, like the Barnes TSX I mentioned before. It’s a single-metal construction, so there is no jacket to shed, and the TSX in particular is known for outstanding performance on deer.

        I don’t know what twist rate you’re using in your rifle, but even if it’s a 1/9 I’d suggest getting a box or two of 62gr CoreLokt Premiums or Barnes TSX, getting a new zero, and using those. If you’re lucky enough to be using a 1/8 or 1/7 rifle, I’d step up to the 69-72gr range.

        There’s a VERY long thread on ArfCom about deer hunting with .223 here. And, corollary, another one from a guy getting pretty soundly lambasted for blaming the bullet for losing a deer.

        So … I hope this helps, and if there are more questions please don’t hesitate to ping me. I’ll be mostly disconnected the next couple days, but will be checking email and would be happy to toss you a phone number if you’d like to discuss hunting ammo further. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I know it had to have been mentioned before but my memory is crap (thanks hockey) but what rifle are you using for your quest for venison?

    Just curious.


  4. That looks like a slightly light strike on the primer. Might want to get the rifle checked. One of my AKs was doing that intermittently with only one brand of ammo this summer; turns out the aft end of the firing pin was slightly peened, which reduced the length ever so slightly. A new pin solved the problem.

  5. That is a WORLD of suck.

    Sorry that happened, but I do agree with some of the above, that it looks like a light strike, may be worth checking the rifle again.

    Best of luck, i sent ER a roast recipe if you do get to fill the tag

  6. You’re not alone. A good friend of mine took up hunting with me two years ago. He’s seriously Jonesing to get a deer. Had a few in front of him, but too far for the crossbow.

    Last Friday, muzzleloader season. I’d loaned him my CVA Wolf, which, for a cheap ML actually has a nice trigger and shoots pretty good groups. I happened to be in a stand about 200 yards from him and actually saw this happen. He leans forward in his stand and takes a shot at a buck which popped out 50 yards away. Broadside standing. Bang! He’s sure of the shot. I get down to go help him look for blood trail. As I get to the stand, he’s holding the gun in 3 pieces.

    Seems that when I last cleaned the gun, I tightened the fore-end a bit much. The spring steel that holds the fore-end and that fits into the groove on the barrel came loose on recoil – he shot right over top of the buck. Oy!!

  7. Winchester made a .223 round for deer with a 64 grain softpoint

    I bought a box and shot a few through my AR clone. They shot well
    but I never actually hunted deer with them. If I was to go out after deer
    with a .223 that would be the round I’d use.

    It’s built for penetration and for staying together while passing through a deer’s rib cage. .

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