Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
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    Nov 2011
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    Default hunting with a 32/20

    anyone hunt with a 32/20?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Brookville, Pennsylvania
    (Jefferson County)
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    I've popped a few groundhog with a .32/20. Never tried hunting deer with one though.
    RIP: SFN, 1861, twoeggsup, Lambo, jamesjo, JayBell, 32 Magnum, Pro2A, mrwildroot

  3. #3
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    going to use one this year

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    Piney twp, Pennsylvania
    (Clarion County)
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    There's a good thread on this at cast boolits. Don't know if it's yours or not. For those interested some good info given: http://castboolits.gunloads.com/showthread.php?t=164962
    If you take a dog which is starving and feed him and make him prosperous, that dog will not bite you. This is the primary difference between a dog and a man. Mark Twain

  5. #5
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    Quote Originally Posted by cephas View Post
    There's a good thread on this at cast boolits. Don't know if it's yours or not. For those interested some good info given: http://castboolits.gunloads.com/showthread.php?t=164962
    not mine but agood read

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    East side of the ANF, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    Things are completely different now as compared to then with respect to hunting. They used snowshoes, not snowmobiles. Out of necessity the "rules of hunting" were much different than the practices today. So it is necessary when asking about cartridges like the 32-20 to put things into context.

    Back in the day (late 1800s up to the 1930s) the 32-20 was the "357 Magnum" of the time, before the 357 Magnum debuted in 1935. There were two loadings, a very mild "pistol" load and a hotter "rifle" load. In northern PA in the early 1900 up to pre-WWII, hunters used rifles chambered for the 32-30, 38-40, 30-30, 35 Remington, and 38-55. The most popular for deer were the 30-30, 35 Remington, and 38-55.

    The 32-20 was employed for small game but some hunters who had but one rifle used the 32-20 for small game and deer. The big difference between then and now? The maximum range was 75 yds, and typical range was 25 to 50 yds. Hunters would not risk a shot unless it was certain, or unless they were desperate for meat. Not many hunters would consider taking a shot that would result in a pursuit of a wounded animal because it represented too much work to track it down and bring it back, and chores were waiting at home or the farm. In rural northern PA at the time, there was no electricity and no labor-saving electrical devices. Everything was done by human or animal power, and took much longer to perform. People got up with the chickens and went to bed shortly after sundown because lamp oil cost money. Leisure time was for Sunday afternoon for a couple hours. Hunters needed to be efficient, and developed skills to post for deer at short ranges to be sure of their kills.

    Scopes were for target rifles, and scopes of the time were too expensive and too fragile for the field. Open sights or receiver sights were exclusively used for hunting. A hunter's only rifle was a tool to be used, and something to be counted on to work. Low cost and high utility were the criteria for most hunters, both pre- and post-Great Depression.

    Old issues of hunting magazines from the time period are full of stories portraying hunts using the rifles and cartridges I've described above. In my own family I grew up listening to my grandfathers and for a while one great-grandfather relate how one gun did it all for them, including the 32-20, given the right conditions and circumstances.

    When I learned to shoot, I fired box after box of 22LR to gain proficiency long before I was entrusted to fire a few rounds of 30-30 from my father's prewar Model 94 Winchester. When I was judged good enough with the 30-30 and allowed to hunt, I was given Dad's rifle and one (1) 30-30 cartridge, and instructed to either bring back the cartridge or a deer. No exceptions. I complied, but I passed on a number of shots for two seasons before I killed my first deer at a paced-off 32 yds the third season.

    I have used the 32-20 for coyote, turkey and groundhogs to very good effect. Although the 32-20 is not my first, second, or even fourth choice for PA whitetail, with the proper shot placement at a reasonable range to target I would not hesitate to use it for deer. But that would be >50 yds, using an expanding bullet in my handloads.

    Noah, taking a trip in the wayback machine.
    If you are not part of the solution, you are the precipitate.

  7. #7
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    So Md, also Dubois Pa, Maryland
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    Give or take , about 100yr ago my Grandfather used .32-20 to shoot Mule Deer ( while homesteading in WY ). Wasn't pleased with performance , took several shots to put it down,

  8. #8
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    washington, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    gonna use it during the fall turkey season

  9. #9
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    washington, Pennsylvania
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    going to load 120 grain cast rnfp

  10. #10
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    Default Re: hunting with a 32/20

    only a few more days to wait

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