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Muzzleloader Law for deer
Posted: 16 May 2012 01:15 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I am a pistol hunter and love hunting with pistols.  I feel left out when it comes to muzzleloader hunting.  So I read the regs on deer hunting with a muzzleloader and noticed the only thing a muzzleloader must have is a 16” barrel.  Hmmm, my current deer pistol that is a 45-70 has a 16” barrel.  Why can’t I have the same gun set up just as a muzzleloader?  For reference, I am shooting a Thompson Contender and Encore.  I am wonder if I can take a Encore Muzzleloader barrel and cut it down to 16” and legally take it hunting as a muzzleloader?  I sent an email to the DNR so we will see what they have to say.

Here are the posted regulations on Hunting Devices and Ammunition.


If this is legal, do you thing a modern high powered muzzleloader barrel could be almost cut in half and still be able to shoot accurate and with enough power to do the job?  I am not talking about 200 yard shots, but at least 75 in hopes….

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Posted: 16 May 2012 01:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Matt,you do know that they still make muzzleloader pistols? whoops…I guess it’s the whole barrel length thing and don’t know if you can get a muzzleloader pistol with a 16’’ barrel?

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Posted: 16 May 2012 02:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Any of the modern muzzleloader pistols I have seen on the market today are all 15”.

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Posted: 16 May 2012 02:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I read you link and I don’t see anything that would exclude you from using the pistol you described.  If you do it and get a ticket let me know and I’ll fight it for ya.

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Posted: 16 May 2012 04:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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not sure what you are wanting to do is legal or not, (sounds like it should be! but i wouldnt want to pay your fine) but matt! i gotta believe if you start cutting a muzzleloader barrel in half, your accuracy has got to start going out the window! i am curious what other readers think!

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Posted: 16 May 2012 05:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Matt,Would a muzzleloader pistol fall under the regs of a center fire pistol for hunting or a muzzleloader rifle? Could be a help on barrel length or does the muzzle pistol even meet the requirements of center fire pistol load?
I’m just guessing but if you do cut a barrel,could you(gun smith) just re thread the needed twist inside of the barrel for better bullet spin?

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Posted: 16 May 2012 05:41 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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What about seeing if you can get a special barrel made from someplace like green mountain rifle barrel company?

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Posted: 16 May 2012 07:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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I talked to the DNR and one little word in one of the sentances forbids this.  “Rifle”  In most of the regs it states firearm, but some it states Rifle.  Where it states Rifle is for the actual muzzleloader season.  Therefor only a rifle can be used, not a pistol.  BUT, any muzzleloader .45 or bigger with a minimum barrel length of 4” can be used in regular firearm deer seasons.  So it looks like I can still have my ML pistol for deer hunting, just not in the ML season.  Now its time to start the search.

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Posted: 16 May 2012 09:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Well,that’s nice to hear that you can use a M.L. pistol during firearm season.It’s just odd that you can’t use it during M.L. season.Too bad that it has to be a .45 and not a .44,otherwise you could hunt with a old colt army ball-n-cap revolver and do it the Josey Wales way…lol
Keep us updated in your research,would be interesting.

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Posted: 16 May 2012 11:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Ask DNR what constitute a “Rifle”...Simple, just build yourself a stock to make your pistol a rifle…I would guess it is just a “STOCK”...Simply put make a short or detachable to beat the system…If it can be shouldered then you win…

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