I thougth someone would answer by now. Yes pistol bullets work ok in most rifles. At least that was the responses I got back. See thread on light cast bullets in .35 Remington. Since I will be casting for .38/.357 soon(have the mould and sizer just no time) I plan on some light load work with these in the .35 also.
I forget which thread it was but in discussing various bullet weights one fellow highly recomended 158's. Personally I don't think pistol bullets are a route to hunting rounds but could be a great way to cheaply shoot more if you don't cast.
What Bman said. Stay away from pistol bullets for deer; unless you get a broadside rib shot they may underpenetrate. Some rifles may jam when more than one round is in the magazine when using pistol bullets. These are shorter in overall length when loaded than are rifle bulleted rounds. What happens is the block on the carrier does not prevent more than one round from popping out of the magazine, and the lever is locked open because the back end of the following round prevents carrier from rising.
Only way to know for sure is to try it. If you jam a round, you can clear it by pushing the stuck cartridge back in the tube through the front of the loading gate.
Pistol length bullets work fine for plinking, small game at lower speeds and blowing the bejeezus out of varmints when loaded to rifle-like velocities. I find the 158's usually shoot better than the lighter weights in Microgroove Marlins. I've settled on 158 JHP's as being best for me. YMMV.
This week I tried light-loaded cast pistol bullets in my 336SC 35 for the first time. Of the first 7 shots fired offhand from 25 yards, 5 went in the same hole. They are a lot of fun to shoot and would work for small game.
I think 180gr. Hornaday XPTs 180gr. rem hollow points, are both excellent choices for Whitetail ,and the 180gr. Nosler Partition is probley one of the best bullets made for the for the 35 Rem. , for Whitetail, Heck I busted a Deer wide open with a 357 Mag. 158gr. rem. bullet from my little Puma ,no bullet recovered. Whitetails are not that hard to punch holes thru.
Though I've posted this before. I'll do it again, yes 357 mag pistol bullets work well in a .35 rem. Years ago I loaded a bunch of 158s and 110s for a friend that lived up in Mecosta, Mich. He and family were dirt poor but lived in deer and snowshoe hare country, so he had me load the two. One day while after the snowshoes a deer poked out of the pines he was hunting broadside, he took her through the heart with a 110gn he gave me the jacket which looked similar to a kung fu throwing star. He recovered this under the hide on the off side no lead with it. He told me that was the hardest he had ever hit a deer, as it went down on the spot and did not get back up. I told him I felt the 110s were too light and he should use the 158s, he had already sold the 158s to his brother. He then showed me several other jackets that looked the same as the first he gave me. He swore by the 110s and told me he would take 500 of them all loaded up. I guess if they spend all their energy in the animal it would be okay. Would I recommend 110s for deer, NO! I would say the 158s would be better and should go all the way through. Though I've never shot a deer with a 35 and 158s, I have shot several with my .357CB and 158s and they seem to be a sure killer in that combo.
I am a big fan of reduced loads in all my rifles and the 35's remington and whelen seem to shoot all the various pistol bullets very well. my usual load in the 35 remington with 158 jhp is 11.5 gr of blue dot. I also use the same charge with 200gr cast bullets with excellent results. I usually go to unique for really light cast bullet loads.
I have been loading pistol bullets in my 35 Rem for some time, and have fired some pretty astonishing groups, surprising no one more than me! I just happened to try a load of ten grains of Unique under both 125 and 158 grain bullets, and it worked so well I quit experimenting. The Winchester bullets I tried shot into an inch and a half at fifty yards, and I was pretty happy with that. Then I tried Remington bullets, and they put five shots into around a half-inch, no fliers, first time! I use Lee Collet Dies, but take no other unusual steps, and the gun shoots like a dream with those bullets. The only critter I've used those lights bullets on was an unlucky rabbit who offered me a clean head shot at about 70 yards, he never heard the shot, but he was pretty messy. :shock: The funny part about the light-bullet loads is that the gun still goes BOOM but there is almost no recoil at all, like shooting a really LOUD 22! Kind of eerie. I've had better luck with the 158 grain bullets as far as accuracy goes, but the 125's weren't very far behind. I don't know what kind of velocity I'm getting, but it's enough to turn a rabbit into bite-sized morsels! :roll: