The 243 Winchester for Australian Game

CBH Australia

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A .30-25 at 5yo, a Trip to Namibia at 15, taking his own .308.
That kids had a charmed life, I'm envious about the Gemsbok , something I did not hunt.
But still he has been deprived of a .243
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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A .30-25 at 5yo, a Trip to Namibia at 15, taking his own .308.
That kids had a charmed life, I'm envious about the Gemsbok , something I did not hunt.
But still he has been deprived of a .243
@CBH Australia
He was asked what he wanted and given the option. He could have had a 243 but said WHY I have a PERFECTLY GOOD 25.
Bob
 

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With 87 gr Hornadys for practice and 100 grain Partitions for hunting my (then 8 year old) son took his first whitetail buck with our 243W.

I added a few more deer with the same 243 (18.5" Sako full stock carbine) with the same 100 grain Partitions and it was very reliable on our West Texas Whitetail.

It came out of retirement a few years ago when I had everything in the rotation learning to shoot from the sticks. I ran ~600 rounds of mostly 95 grain Ballistic Tips as part of 4k+ practice rounds over two years.

It's a handy and fun choice when appropriate for the task, especially if recoil is a consideration.
 

CBH Australia

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With 87 gr Hornadys for practice and 100 grain Partitions for hunting my (then 8 year old) son took his first whitetail buck with our 243W.

I added a few more deer with the same 243 (18.5" Sako full stock carbine) with the same 100 grain Partitions and it was very reliable on our West Texas Whitetail.

It came out of retirement a few years ago when I had everything in the rotation learning to shoot from the sticks. I ran ~600 rounds of mostly 95 grain Ballistic Tips as part of 4k+ practice rounds over two years.

It's a handy and fun choice when appropriate for the task, especially if recoil is a consideration.
Looks like Bob endorsed it for practice at least
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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Looks like Bob endorsed it for practice at least
@CBH
Yes the little 243 does a brilliant job at killing paper targets Chris. You can safely use it with any projectile to take anything from the smallest to largest paper target without issues
 

F. Vaccaro

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I like the .243, I've taken only one 150lb mule deer buck with it & he was about 50yds. One shot high in the heart. He fell over backwards, regained his feet, slowly walked in a half circle & fell dead. I had another round chambered in case. My load was the 100gr Hornaday Spire PT at 2840fps (chronographed). I have however seen my cousin cleanly take several deer with his .243.
I think Bob nailed it saying a lot of people use the wrong bullet. Usually 90grs-100grs are hunting bullets, below 90grs are usually varmint bullets. I also add shot placement is king no matter the caliber!
My usual deer rifles are from 6.5 to .375 H&H or the .45-70 loaded to Marlin levels. The older my shoulders get the better they like the 6.5, 7X57, & .308.
 

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I've had two 250 savages and now prefer the .243W. Just flatter shooting and a harder hitter.
I,ve seen a number of species killed with the .243W. Rabbit, fox, ferals, goat, pig, Impala, camels.
Just take your time and pass up bad shots. 95 grain works best.
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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I've had two 250 savages and now prefer the .243W. Just flatter shooting and a harder hitter.
I,ve seen a number of species killed with the .243W. Rabbit, fox, ferals, goat, pig, Impala, camels.
Just take your time and pass up bad shots. 95 grain works best.
@Code4
Load the little Savage up to equal pressure as the 245 snd it will out do the 243. The 250 was held to 46,000 cup for the Savage 99. Load it to the same 52,000 as the 243.
In the Savage you can go upto 120gn projectiles. Let's see the 243 do that.
Bob
 

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@Ragman
That's the problem with the people I know that use the 243. They get one good kill with a particular bullet and think it will work for everything.

The .243 is almost the perfect Springbok load on the open plains of the Karoo.
With a 100gr SP at between 150m-300m once its slowed down a little.

Vets use .22's to shoot farm animals, Australia is one overgrown farmyard hunting wise so why would a .243 not do?
 

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Yup!

Just like the .30-06, if you use the right bullet for the job at hand, the .243 won’t let you down if you do your part with placing the right bullet weight in the vitals of the animal.
I’ve seen too many people, just like Bob, use 85 - 87 gr bullets on deer, and the animals just have a gaping hole in them, and run off.
Use 100 gr bullets on larger game, and it’ll do you good.


Hawk
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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The .243 is almost the perfect Springbok load on the open plains of the Karoo.
With a 100gr SP at between 150m-300m once its slowed down a little.

Vets use .22's to shoot farm animals, Australia is one overgrown farmyard hunting wise so why would a .243 not do?
@shark_za
Problem is vets us the 22lr at a range or 2 inches not 200 yards.
You can put a bull down in a crush very easily game animals at distance is a different story.
Bob
 

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@Code4
Load the little Savage up to equal pressure as the 245 snd it will out do the 243. The 250 was held to 46,000 cup for the Savage 99. Load it to the same 52,000 as the 243.
In the Savage you can go upto 120gn projectiles. Let's see the 243 do that.
Bob
Done that. Still not up to the task. Reality doesn't meet reputation. EDIT: Thats why the 250-3000 is moribund in the marketplace. If it hadn't been superceded, we'd all still be using it. Its is a cartridge for Romantics and Traditionalists and that is where it shines. Just like that other sacred cow, the 7x57. Which I've also owned and used overseas and is no longer with me
.
 
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hawkeyesatx

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For me, the .243 has performed admirably.
Something which I cannot say about the .25-06.
I was happy with a .25-06 several years ago, hunting the same varmints I used to with the .243! It did exactly the same thing on coyotes, but when I went to use the .25-06 deer hunting, it let me down in a huge way.
I was hunting up in the mountains with my buddy. It was the same place where we had hunted for the past 4 years. I had harvested deer and elk up there with a .300 Win Mag the year before. But this time, I took my trusty .25-06, which I had practiced the spring and summer before deer started, and knew the trajectory and energy inside and out.
My buddy and I decided to do a little stalking in a grove of trees where we saw 2 bucks go in. We approached slowly, so as not to spook them too bad.
I saw a whitetail buck walking up the ridge line on my right, and knew it was one of the bucks. I snuck to where there was a branch intersecting a tree, and settled my rifle right in that crook, and had a rock solid rest. I had my breathing under control, and squeezed my shot off. I was aiming just behind the elbow, and KRAK! The rifle went off, recoil obscured my vision, but I saw that buck drop like a pile of bricks! I thought the 120 gr Winchester protected point did its job. Well, it didn’t. That bullet blew up when it hit the rib, and never penetrated. Left a huge hole in the right side of its body. The only reason I know, is because other hunters that camped down from us, saw this buck laying in the grass, in the small draw on the other side of where I shot it. It was so weakened from blood loss, it was almost dead, until the young man shot it, and put it out of its misery.
To this day, I haven’t used, or thought about getting a .25-06, because of that incident. It’s been a little over 30 years, now.
Now, for the honest truth. The .243 never had a mishap like that. It penetrated the several deer I harvested, plus it was more than lethal on the vermin I hunted as well.
Nope, won’t touch another .25-06. It’s great for vermin, just not deer in my experience.


Hawk
 

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Calibers that shoot bullets over 2600fps are not needed in the Bushveld (Deer Woods) unless you need to open Mono metal bullets.
Stick to the open plains where they shine with flatter trajectories.
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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For me, the .243 has performed admirably.
Something which I cannot say about the .25-06.
I was happy with a .25-06 several years ago, hunting the same varmints I used to with the .243! It did exactly the same thing on coyotes, but when I went to use the .25-06 deer hunting, it let me down in a huge way.
I was hunting up in the mountains with my buddy. It was the same place where we had hunted for the past 4 years. I had harvested deer and elk up there with a .300 Win Mag the year before. But this time, I took my trusty .25-06, which I had practiced the spring and summer before deer started, and knew the trajectory and energy inside and out.
My buddy and I decided to do a little stalking in a grove of trees where we saw 2 bucks go in. We approached slowly, so as not to spook them too bad.
I saw a whitetail buck walking up the ridge line on my right, and knew it was one of the bucks. I snuck to where there was a branch intersecting a tree, and settled my rifle right in that crook, and had a rock solid rest. I had my breathing under control, and squeezed my shot off. I was aiming just behind the elbow, and KRAK! The rifle went off, recoil obscured my vision, but I saw that buck drop like a pile of bricks! I thought the 120 gr Winchester protected point did its job. Well, it didn’t. That bullet blew up when it hit the rib, and never penetrated. Left a huge hole in the right side of its body. The only reason I know, is because other hunters that camped down from us, saw this buck laying in the grass, in the small draw on the other side of where I shot it. It was so weakened from blood loss, it was almost dead, until the young man shot it, and put it out of its misery.
To this day, I haven’t used, or thought about getting a .25-06, because of that incident. It’s been a little over 30 years, now.
Now, for the honest truth. The .243 never had a mishap like that. It penetrated the several deer I harvested, plus it was more than lethal on the vermin I hunted as well.
Nope, won’t touch another .25-06. It’s great for vermin, just not deer in my experience.


Hawk
@hawkeyesatx
Another case of wrong bullet. Winchester were renowned for for loading shit bullets in the 25/06. The 90 grain PEP was a peice of crop. Remington and federal on the other hand load it well. A mate shot a wild horse with a single 117grain bullet out if a federal blue box, one and done.
It's a pity you had a bad run otherwise you would still have the 25.
 

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I shot a Rusa deer (w my 270) that had previously been shot with a 243.
The poor deer was obviously suffering for I assume for about a week.
The 243 bullet caused a wound near the bottom of the heart but didn’t penetrate enough to kill.
The 243 is okay but like all cartridges, sensible limits must be adhered to.
 

CBH Australia

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For me, the .243 has performed admirably.
Something which I cannot say about the .25-06.
I was happy with a .25-06 several years ago, hunting the same varmints I used to with the .243! It did exactly the same thing on coyotes, but when I went to use the .25-06 deer hunting, it let me down in a huge way.
I was hunting up in the mountains with my buddy. It was the same place where we had hunted for the past 4 years. I had harvested deer and elk up there with a .300 Win Mag the year before. But this time, I took my trusty .25-06, which I had practiced the spring and summer before deer started, and knew the trajectory and energy inside and out.
My buddy and I decided to do a little stalking in a grove of trees where we saw 2 bucks go in. We approached slowly, so as not to spook them too bad.
I saw a whitetail buck walking up the ridge line on my right, and knew it was one of the bucks. I snuck to where there was a branch intersecting a tree, and settled my rifle right in that crook, and had a rock solid rest. I had my breathing under control, and squeezed my shot off. I was aiming just behind the elbow, and KRAK! The rifle went off, recoil obscured my vision, but I saw that buck drop like a pile of bricks! I thought the 120 gr Winchester protected point did its job. Well, it didn’t. That bullet blew up when it hit the rib, and never penetrated. Left a huge hole in the right side of its body. The only reason I know, is because other hunters that camped down from us, saw this buck laying in the grass, in the small draw on the other side of where I shot it. It was so weakened from blood loss, it was almost dead, until the young man shot it, and put it out of its misery.
To this day, I haven’t used, or thought about getting a .25-06, because of that incident. It’s been a little over 30 years, now.
Now, for the honest truth. The .243 never had a mishap like that. It penetrated the several deer I harvested, plus it was more than lethal on the vermin I hunted as well.
Nope, won’t touch another .25-06. It’s great for vermin, just not deer in my experience.


Hawk
Hawk,
Bob beat me to it. On reading of your experience it sounds like the projectile let you down. I saw where a bullet broke up on a boar shoulder sheild. Short story is I understand why it did.
I've read a lot about the .25-06. Many people are staunch supporters. In fact where I hunted in South Africa there were 2 large Kudu mounts in the outfitters home. Both taken with a .25-06.
 

F. Vaccaro

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For me, the .243 has performed admirably.
Something which I cannot say about the .25-06.
I was happy with a .25-06 several years ago, hunting the same varmints I used to with the .243! It did exactly the same thing on coyotes, but when I went to use the .25-06 deer hunting, it let me down in a huge way.
I was hunting up in the mountains with my buddy. It was the same place where we had hunted for the past 4 years. I had harvested deer and elk up there with a .300 Win Mag the year before. But this time, I took my trusty .25-06, which I had practiced the spring and summer before deer started, and knew the trajectory and energy inside and out.
My buddy and I decided to do a little stalking in a grove of trees where we saw 2 bucks go in. We approached slowly, so as not to spook them too bad.
I saw a whitetail buck walking up the ridge line on my right, and knew it was one of the bucks. I snuck to where there was a branch intersecting a tree, and settled my rifle right in that crook, and had a rock solid rest. I had my breathing under control, and squeezed my shot off. I was aiming just behind the elbow, and KRAK! The rifle went off, recoil obscured my vision, but I saw that buck drop like a pile of bricks! I thought the 120 gr Winchester protected point did its job. Well, it didn’t. That bullet blew up when it hit the rib, and never penetrated. Left a huge hole in the right side of its body. The only reason I know, is because other hunters that camped down from us, saw this buck laying in the grass, in the small draw on the other side of where I shot it. It was so weakened from blood loss, it was almost dead, until the young man shot it, and put it out of its misery.
To this day, I haven’t used, or thought about getting a .25-06, because of that incident. It’s been a little over 30 years, now.
Now, for the honest truth. The .243 never had a mishap like that. It penetrated the several deer I harvested, plus it was more than lethal on the vermin I hunted as well.
Nope, won’t touch another .25-06. It’s great for vermin, just not deer in my experience.


Hawk
I don’t minimize the failure, but it sounds more like bullet failure than cartridge failure?
 

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l dont own a 243 but have a couple of 6mm dashers built on old Mauser 98 actions that are basically a more efficient 243, less powder more velocity, very precise ect...
the 6mm fits a need for me in an accurate meat hunter without destroying the meat
l use 100gr sierra pro hunters @ 3020fps

here's one l shot a few days ago with a 6mm dasher after passing up eight better heads because they were too good for just eating and still in velvet would be a crime to not let them breed

IaBbzSJ.jpg


and here is a photo after the shot showing where the deer in on the deck shown by the yellow arrow

8oHlQp3.jpg


and here is a 10x photo showing the deer, the white dot

fUXWSl5.jpg


l have used bigger cartridges but but stopped because of meat damage
IMHO the 234 cal does have its place
 
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F. Vaccaro

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l dont own a 243 but have a couple of 6mm dashers built on old Mauser 98 actions that are basically a more efficient 243, less powder more velocity, very precise ect...
the 6mm fits a need for me in an accurate meat hunter without destroying the meat
l use 100gr sierra pro hunters @ 3020fps

here's one l shot a few days ago with a 6mm dasher after passing up eight better heads because they were too good for just eating and still in velvet would be a crime to not let them breed

View attachment 450989

and here is a photo after the shot showing where the deer in on the deck shown by the yellow arrow

View attachment 450990

and here is a 10x photo showing the deer, the white dot

View attachment 450991

l have used bigger cartridges but but stopped because of meat damage
IMHO the 234 cal does have its place
Nice! I congratulate you for passing better bucks to let them reproduce!
 

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