350 Legend

buckbull

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Jun 20, 2011
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It appears that Illinois is going to allow rifles during our deer firearm season. A bill has passed both the IL house and Senate with 100% approval and word on the street is that Governor Pritzer is going to sign the bill into law.

The legislation is going to be quite restrictive. Caliber must be .35 or bigger and must be a straightwall centerfire case. I believe there will be a case length min/max as well.

It will be nice not to have to shoot slugs. I find the recoil not too bad but hard to stomach $5-6 dollars a round (12ga 3" sabot). I'm not too interested in pistol rounds like the .347, .44, .500 etc. I'll be looking at the 350 legend, 450 bushmaster, maybe .444 marlin, 45/70 etc. but I leaning toward the 350 legend. This was a round developed by Winchester for slug only states that are starting to allow rifles to be used. I believe Ohio and Michigan; perhaps others are allowing these kinds of straight wall cartridges.

Leaning toward either winchester xpr or ruger american. Lots of AR platform and scout rifles in this caliber but I'd prefer a traditional bolt action rifle with 20-22 inch barrel. Just looking for opinions and if anyone here has any experience with the guns or 350 legend.
 

LCH

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Jun 28, 2015
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Southern Indiana
Our rifle restrictions, at least for public land, here in Indiana are pretty similar to what you just described. I have a 450 Bushmaster and my daughter has a 350 Legend. Either cartridge would be an excellent choice. I've taken lots of deer and hogs with the 450. We have yet to take any game with the 350, but I don't doubt it's efficacy. The recoil with the 350 is extremely mild as well.

My 450 is in the AR-15 platform, my daughter's 350 is a CVA Scout rifle, stainless single shot. Both are very accurate.
 
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buckbull

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I guess I should of also pointed out that whatever we use we will need to use it as a single shot. Dumb, I know. But once rifles become legal it won't be long before we will be able to use the magazine. Same thing happened when the state allowed crossbows for the handicap, it wasn't long before crossbows can be used by everyone. Just have to get a foot in the door; firearm companies make a few donations, and presto we will be able to keep 3 rounds in the gun.
 

Rich M

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Oct 16, 2012
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What ranges do you want?

i have .357 mag at 1,900 fps w Lil Gun and fury 158 gr bullets that ring 8 inch steel all day long at 225 yards. Single shot rifle also allows .355 165 gr ftx bullets to do the same. Never would have bought 350 L if i had found the fury bullets first. .357 mag as a 200 yard deer gun, go figure. It is very quiet, very soft recoil, cheap and easy to load and shoot. We’ve got 14 deer with it and only one ran. Shoot 158 gr xtp fp at 1,900 fps out to 100 yards and they just drop.

everythingi load in the 158 and 165 gr bracket has a cold bore 1,900 fps and 2,000 for 2nd shot plus.

i see the 350 Legend as a 300 yard gun but the 250 yard range i have access too has me wanting that extra 150 feet to see the drop and what they’ll do to 1-gal water bottles. From what i hear, The winchester 150 gr bullets seem to be the real deal and print close to the cheap winchester 145 gr solids.

i coudn’t get the win 150s so bought some 170 interlocks and later saw some videos and think they are too stiff for the anemic 350L L past 125-150 yards.

had the fury 158s up to 2450 fps w Lil Gun. The 165 ftx loads are in the 2350 fps bracket. Both these bullets will expand well at 1,000 fps.

Fury also has longer 170 and 180 gr bullets. I have some 170s to test.

i prefer winchester brass and the same cci primers i use in .357 mag. Also use .357 mag crimping die to crimp the 350 L.

Shot 2 does w the 165 ftx and both dropped, larger got up and bled good for about 100 yards. Smaller stayed down.

The 350 has a mild bark and recoil about like a 243.

my rifle is ruger american ranch rifle, 16 inch barrel. The ftx shoots 1/2 inch at 100 and 1- inch at 225-250. Diamondback 3-9x40 bdc scope on it.
 
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buckbull

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They have been tryin to pass this for years and it has been sitting there going nowhere. Do you have a link to the bill and its progression?

If this passes I might pick me up one of these and a set of dies.

AR-15 Complete Uppers | Ships to Your Door - 350 Legend (bearcreekarsenal.com)

Or just continue to use my muzzleloader. It kills them too and its paid for. lol

Sounds like it actually might pass this go around. When you can get Chicago Democrats and Southern IL Republicans to agree on something it sounds promising.
 

mallardsx2

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Jul 8, 2015
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"A single-shot rifle that is."

This is an important part of the puzzle.

Funny thing is that gun shops in the south were selling the hell out of 350 legend uppers to guys who were going to Illinois to hunt the rifle season last year. I had a bunch of guys telling me that they were legal and as far as I know they went there and hunted with them...lol They certainly were not legal last season.
 

buckbull

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Jun 20, 2011
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"A single-shot rifle that is."

This is an important part of the puzzle.

Funny thing is that gun shops in the south were selling the hell out of 350 legend uppers to guys who were going to Illinois to hunt the rifle season last year. I had a bunch of guys telling me that they were legal and as far as I know they went there and hunted with them...lol They certainly were not legal last season.
"Single Shot" - I'm told you can hunt with a bolt action rifle without the magazine to be legal. My buddy told me last night you can buy 1 round magazines as well that will fulfill the single shot requirement.

I had a buddy that told me last year that he was buying a rifle as well. I told him they were not legal. I'm not sure why a guy would buy a rifle based on hearsay. Illinois has had a "rifle" bill come up for years and has always died in committee. Not sure why this one has made it through; unanimous approval too boot.
 
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buckbull

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Jun 20, 2011
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What ranges do you want?

i have .357 mag at 1,900 fps w Lil Gun and fury 158 gr bullets that ring 8 inch steel all day long at 225 yards. Single shot rifle also allows .355 165 gr ftx bullets to do the same. Never would have bought 350 L if i had found the fury bullets first. .357 mag as a 200 yard deer gun, go figure. It is very quiet, very soft recoil, cheap and easy to load and shoot. We’ve got 14 deer with it and only one ran. Shoot 158 gr xtp fp at 1,900 fps out to 100 yards and they just drop.

everythingi load in the 158 and 165 gr bracket has a cold bore 1,900 fps and 2,000 for 2nd shot plus.

i see the 350 Legend as a 300 yard gun but the 250 yard range i have access too has me wanting that extra 150 feet to see the drop and what they’ll do to 1-gal water bottles. From what i hear, The winchester 150 gr bullets seem to be the real deal and print close to the cheap winchester 145 gr solids.

i coudn’t get the win 150s so bought some 170 interlocks and later saw some videos and think they are too stiff for the anemic 350L L past 125-150 yards.

had the fury 158s up to 2450 fps w Lil Gun. The 165 ftx loads are in the 2350 fps bracket. Both these bullets will expand well at 1,000 fps.

Fury also has longer 170 and 180 gr bullets. I have some 170s to test.

i prefer winchester brass and the same cci primers i use in .357 mag. Also use .357 mag crimping die to crimp the 350 L.

Shot 2 does w the 165 ftx and both dropped, larger got up and bled good for about 100 yards. Smaller stayed down.

The 350 has a mild bark and recoil about like a 243.

my rifle is ruger american ranch rifle, 16 inch barrel. The ftx shoots 1/2 inch at 100 and 1- inch at 225-250. Diamondback 3-9x40 bdc scope on it.
My property is all deep woods so max shots are probably around 100 yards, less if I don't get this honeysuckle under control. I'd say 80% of the deer I kill with my slug gun are within 50 yards. If I went the pistol round route I would most likely go for the .44 because I already have ammo for my s&w 629. I don't reload so need something off the shelf. Primary use would be for deer but I would probably use this gun for coyotes, groundhogs, etc. I have a big gap in my rifle collection, nothing between .22lr and .30-06. Well I have an AR but its on the heavy side for hunting.
 

mallardsx2

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Jul 8, 2015
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I killed my Illinois buck this year waaaay out through the woods. If I am going to be taking those kind of shots I pretty much want my inline anyhow. It will shoot the fly's off a cats ass at 200...I just don't like the hassle associated with it.

I am "in process" of refurbishing an 870 slug gun. So I might just roll with that as well if I can get my cast and powder coated slugs to shoot out of it. I have all summer to mess around with that so hopefully I have a solution to the muzzleloader.

Cant say I own a single shot rifle of any caliber. But if I did I would try to shoot these FULL power .44 rounds I have out of it because they are 0 fun to shoot out of my pistol. I guarantee they would kill a deer at 100...

They like a puppy with teef!
 
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Rich M

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Oct 16, 2012
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it would be easier to get a 350 Legend rifle. If you can just use then without mag, i’d go this route. The 150 gr winchester deer load should give DRT performance.

With sub 100 yard shots, the .357 mag would be excellent. I’ve got a single shot and a M77/357. They shoot bottom of a soda can w the XTPs at 120 yards. It is just difficult to get the rifles. 350 Legend is more popular right now.
 
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Mr Drysdale

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Mar 24, 2013
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Mississippi had a similar reg a few years ago. I bought a single shot 444 Marlin and killed a lot of deer with it. Never shot further than 100 yards with it as I hunted hardwood bottoms. Most all were DRT. Shot the Hornady Superformance ammunition. They eventually allowed rifle of choice for that season so the 444 is now gone.
 
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buckbull

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IL Governor passed the bill and now its the law of the land of lincoln. Time to get serious about finding a rifle.
 
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Rich M

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Oct 16, 2012
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Think Im gonna load up some 350 Legend round today. Have about 50 brass and its been bugging me. Trying to decide if loading plinkers or save em for hunting rounds.

my little cousin shot a Maine bull moose with a 35 Whelen.
 

mallardsx2

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Jul 8, 2015
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Spoke to my neighbor this afternoon and he thinks the 30 bellm would also fall into the allowed necked cartridges. I think the majority of folks will be buying straight wall.
I agree 100%

Or most guys will continue using their shotguns.