Taurus Raging Hunter: A Lightweight Large-Frame .44 Magnum
Popular handgun maker Taurus has put out many “raging” guns over the years—Raging Bull, Raging Hornet, Raging Judge, Raging Thirty, and Raging Bee. Now, there’s a Raging model specifically for one of the largest and most passionate demographics — hunters. Meet the Taurus Raging Hunter.
Meet the Raging Hunter
Taurus saw demand on the big game hunting market for a wheelgun that blends value with features hunters prefer. The Raging Hunter features dual cylinder locks, a transfer bar safety, fully adjustable rear sight, and an integral Picatinny rail for easy optics mounting.
The largest difference between the Raging Hunter and other comparable hunting wheelguns is the business-end design. A lightweight barrel sleeve shrouds the stainless barrel, making the handgun less front-heavy than its counterparts. A recess in that barrel shroud houses the ejector rod. Speaking of barrels, available lengths include 5.12-inches, 6.75-inches, and 8.37-inches.
The business end of the Raging Hunter shows the stainless barrel sitting inside a lightweight shroud. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/Guns.com)
Factory tuned porting helps eliminate muzzle rise, allowing hunters to stay on target should follow-up shots be needed. Cushioned insert grips make the gun more comfortable to fire, especially when dealing with hotter hunting loads.
The Raging Hunter initially launched only in .44 Magnum, but Brazilian-based Taurus has since added both .357 Magnum and .454 Casull to the stable, with each also firing their lesser counterparts of .38 Special and .45 Colt. The wheelguns are available in either Black Oxide or two-tone Stainless, along with several barrel lengths, making these six-shooters—or seven, in the case of the .357 Mag–a fine entry point into the dedicated hunting revolver market. MSRP on the Raging Hunters sits at $910 to $919, depending upon caliber.
Our test Raging Hunter, with its dual cylinder lockup, holds six rounds of .44 Magnum or .44 Spl, though versions exist for .454 Casull and .357 Magnum. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/Guns.com)
Our test Raging Hunter is the .44 Magnum with an 8.37-inch barrel and two-toned finish. The gun shipped in a rather plain cardboard box, though we’ve seen other Raging Hunters come in a handy zipper case.
The Raging Hunter looks like a mean tank, but pick it up, and the looks defy the weight. For our longest-barreled Hunter, the weight is “only” 55-ounces or 3.4-pounds, sans ammunition, or optic. While that may sound heavy, what looks like a hulky full stainless barrel and housing is just a lighter stainless barrel inside a shroud.
The Raging Hunter’s rear sight is easily adjustable, though most hunters will opt to mount an optic on the full-length rail. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/Guns.com)
While many hunters welcome the weight of a gun as a counter to recoil, others prefer weight savings. Neither is right, but rather, a personal preference. To counteract the muzzle rise that would come with less weight at the muzzle end, Taurus ports the barrel, taming rise. The reduction in weight not only balances nicely but is also theoretically easier to carry afield on hunts than comparable OAL stainless builds. How does that lack of heft leave it standing in firing conditions when shooting the hottest loads?
We headed to the range with a healthy can full of .44 caliber ammunition, any of which would be suitable for hunting. That included .44 Rem Mags: Hornady 240-grain XTP, Winchester 240-grain JSP, and Sig Sauer 240-grain V-Crown JHP, as well as a box of Hornady .44 Special 180-grain XTP for more low-recoil range-time pleasure.
The Taurus six-shooter ran through each with 100 percent reliability and a similar point of impact for all the magnums at 50 yards. Because this is a lighter-weight handgun than others of comparable size on the market, felt recoil is slightly greater; however, the ported muzzle helps considerably with muzzle rise and makes staying on target for follow-up shots much quicker than anticipated. In fact, there’s surprisingly little whip.
The red cushioned insert grips are welcome, as much of the recoil comes back through the palm. The dual lockup on the cylinder takes some practice to swing out quickly, but the added strength is always welcome when firing magnum loads. While the iron sights are nice and easy to adjust, we appreciated the addition of the full-length integral optics rail.
The Taurus Raging Hunter punched out nice groups at 50-yards using only the iron sights, though optics mounting is easy. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/Guns.com)
With just a bit of practice and familiarization with the revolver, we were able to put out repeatable sub-2-inch three-shot groups at 50 yards using only the iron sights. We made adjustments to elevation with the rear sight, and changes were spot-on, though most hunters will likely opt for mounting an optic.
The only hitch in our giddy-up, while likely a minor flaw with only this particular firearm, is what feels like hang-up in the trigger pull. There’s a noticeable hitch partway through the pull, likely caused by a burr on the internals and certainly fixable by the factory. This flaw did not exist on the other models we dry-fired on other industry occasions. That aside, the trigger pull would be quite nice, with an expected heavy yet surprisingly smooth double-action pull.
The Taurus Raging Hunter is a lightweight, affordable hunting handgun option. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/Guns.com)
Though Taurus is a name synonymous with more budget-friendly guns, they balance that with features hunters appreciate — dual lockup, muzzle porting, easy optics mounting, and solid calibers. The large frame Taurus Raging Hunter is a welcome addition to the hunting revolver market, giving game-chasers a more lightweight, budget-friendly, six-shooting option.