Is a .243 a good round for deer and coyote

Discussion in 'Up To .375' started by nuval.J2711, Aug 27, 2013.

  1. nuval.J2711

    nuval.J2711 New Member

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    What cal. do you guys think I should get for my first gun. I was originally looking at a .243 Winchester model 70 featherweight. My dad and I thought this would be a good caliber because i am only 13 and not looking to hunt anything big like moose, bear, ect. If I buy this gun would i be able to use it in Africa.
     
  2. greyfox

    greyfox AH Veteran

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    "Use it in Africa"? depends, on what you're hunting and who you are hunting with. My PH specifies minimum 6.5 which is fine, his land his rules. Personally I'd use a 243 if allowed. Some feel the 6mm is not stout enough.
    Some countries restrict bullet diameter to species, but I've HEARD of people going on cull hunts and using much smaller.
    For deer it is darn near magic! I use 100 gr Nosler handloads in mine.

    Also, if it's your first gun, that does not mean it's the gun your taking to Africa, unless you're leaving in the next month?? get some experience hunting and shooting, and get a '06 to take to Africa.
     
  3. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    My first rifle was a 270 Win, I still think it's a sensible choice. You can hunt most of the game of North America with it. Where you are hunting a 243 Win is a logical choice for a weapon, it's a good deer gun!
     
  4. DOC-404

    DOC-404 AH Elite

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    Of course you can. I hunted with a .243 for many years. At around 2950 fps with a 100 gr bullet, it was my favorite Springbuck and Impala rifle as a youngster, not to mention crop raiding baboons. You can hand-load anything from 55 to 115 gr bullets, although the lighter bullets can be quite testy in the wind. A great start for a 13 year old. Add a suppressor and you can have loads of fun..
     
  5. toxic111

    toxic111 AH Veteran

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    I'll agree on the .243 (or 6mm) as a decent starter gun, though a 7mm-08 would be my preferred choice on deer.

    That said I used a 6mm loaded with 95g partitions to take several deer over the years. With the right bullet it will do the job at reasonable ranges.

    It would be great on springbok, blesbok & impala or similar sized antelope. It would depend on what your PH prefers. If it is a gun you know well & shoot even better it shouldn't matter. IMO the 270 kicks a little much for a youngsters rifle. I would stick to the 243, 7mm-08 25-06 or similar calibers.
     
  6. nuval.J2711

    nuval.J2711 New Member

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    Thanks I will talk to my dad
     
  7. nuval.J2711

    nuval.J2711 New Member

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    Thank you! i will keep that in mind
     
  8. nuval.J2711

    nuval.J2711 New Member

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    Im hunting in Peterborough Ontario. Thank you for the info
     
  9. nuval.J2711

    nuval.J2711 New Member

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    Thanks I hope to get more information from you. what do you think of a 25-06
     
  10. Divernhunter

    Divernhunter AH Veteran

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    The 25-06 is a good cartridge. I have one.
    I would say get a 7mm-08 or a 260rem. Both are better than a 243(6mm) on less than perfect shots. Many get new hunters a 243 and that is a handicap. A 243 is an experts rifle that will pass on a less than perfect shot.
    The 260rem is a great cartridge which kicks like a 243 but the ballistic and terminal performance is way better. It is slightly better than a 6.5X55 which is used for wild boar/moose/red stag etc in Europe. I shot a bobcat and a coyote with one last year, so it is good for small stuff also.
    Either the 7mm-08 or 260 in a Tikka T3 lite is a great combo with a Leupold 3X9X40 scope. I have the 7mm-08 and a 6.5X55.
     
  11. Rob44

    Rob44 BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    243 is a great round,,,if your putting in a lot of range time a 223 is easier and cheaper to feed ,,lot of surplus Ammo out there,,,heres a thought,,buy a Savage 110 in 223 and shoot it cheap when You want to go 243,, look for a 243 barrel and bolt head,,,swap out the barrel any competent Smith can handle the job ,,now you own basically two rifles,,,
     
  12. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR GOLD BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    "Is a .243 a good round for deer and coyote?" YES
     
  13. Bobpuckett

    Bobpuckett GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    The 243 is a great Caliber for deer and Coyote. My favorite goto rifle is a Handi rifle in a 243 with a bull barrel. I've taken lots of deer fox coyote and groundhogs just plain fun to shoot. I took a deer once I wish I could have gotten on video 264 yrds heart shot with a 85 gr TSX all 4 legs went straight out like a cartoon before hitting the ground.
     
  14. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Bob my .243 Win has a bull barrel too, the last deer I shot was a doe at 350 yds. +, I use 100 gr. power points...I LOVE THAT GUN!
     
  15. Bobpuckett

    Bobpuckett GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Whats not to love about a 243 I bought mine mainly for Coyote turned out to be a darn good deer rifle as well. It was a gun on consignment at a gunshop $200 out the door I've done lost count on the deer Deb and I have taken with it, in any case got my $200 dollars worth +. :D
     
  16. greyfox

    greyfox AH Veteran

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    A 243 is a 308 necked down to a 6mm. A 25-06 is a 30/06 necked down to .257.
    A 308 is a 30/06 shortend about 1/2 inch (to function better in automatics - shorter stroke, less weight) A 270 is an '06 necked down to .277. 7mm-08 is a 308 necked to 7mm. see the point? Balistically they are very close and most improvements are marketing guys convincing us we need a 7mm-08 instead of a 270 - though there no real difference in the two.

    Shoot a deer with any of them and he's dead IF YOU HIT HIM IN THE VITALS! Shot placement is the key, and confidence in your ability.
     
  17. Diamondhitch

    Diamondhitch AH Legend

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    .243 is a great starter gun. Whitetails, coyotes, wolves, Black Bears etc will be no problem. My 13yo niece killed a big bull moose last year with hers (backed up by her dads .308), the autopsy showed that her shot caused more than enough damage to quickly bring him down had her dad not shot immediately after her report.

    Although it is probably the last thing on your mind the .243 would make a great hand me down rifle for your kids to learn to shoot with someday.
     
  18. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

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    Copy and paste this advice,it is EXCELLENT ADVICE!
     
  19. greyfox

    greyfox AH Veteran

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    thank you, I truly feel honored!
     
  20. drew416

    drew416 AH Senior Member

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    Good advice and excellent choice. The 260 Rem or 7mm/08 will give the same bark and recoil as 234 Win, but just puts you up a grade. I have not seen an inaccurate Tikka T3 yet. They are a very popular firearm in Australia. Both calibers are ballistically superior to the 234 Win. I don't know if your into handloading, but that would increase the potential of the 260 Rem even more.

    Don't forget your are not going to be 13 forever. Get Dad to spend that little bit extra and get a quality rifle ( in whatever caliber you decide on), put decent optics on top, and one day your son my be using the same rifle.
     

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