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.243 to .243wssm changeover

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Old 01-24-2008, 08:07 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 14
.243 to .243wssm changeover

Hello All

i am new to the forums and new to long range shooting. i was looking at a .243 and was wondering if it would be possible to change a .243 to a .243 wssm without having to get a new barrel. any help is appreciated. thank you.
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Old 01-24-2008, 08:38 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Southern Wisconsin
Posts: 1,308

It's most likely doable, but probably cost prohibative. Depends on which brand of rifle, barrel contour, do you want a magazine or is single shot ok.

First you'll need to change the bolt face diameter, on a Savage it's a relatively simple bolt head change on the others you need to machine open the boltface.

Although the wssm case is large in diameter it is considerably shorter than the 243 so you'll need to cut some of the chamber end of the barrel off then rechamber and rethread and in order to do this you have to have enough straight area before the contour of the barrel changes to accomodate the new threads. This of coarse will change how the barrel fits in the stock, probably won't be as aesthetically pleaseing to the eye.

If you have to have a repeater you need to swith out the mag box and follower and may or may not need to have some feed rail work done.

Like most things in life it's just never as easy as it should be.

Ignorance can be treated with education, sadly there is no cure for stupidity.
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Old 01-24-2008, 09:55 PM
Silver Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Everett, WA
Posts: 421
I really like the regular 243 but if you want WSSM performance with out changing the boltface, clip, etc. you could go with 6mm rem AI, I know a guy who has one that really get's em going. If you don't care for fire-forming there's always the 6x284.

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Old 01-24-2008, 11:04 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,651

I would not recommend the 243 WSSM. I have heard nothing but bad things about this chambering. However, I think the reason for it's lack of success has to do with the brass. If Lupa or Norma made brass for the 243 WSSM, it might be performing better.

It sounds like you are wanting a high velocity 6mm. If I were you, I would buy a Krieger 30" barrel and have it chambered for the 6x284. The 243 AI and 6MM AI are awesome performers too, however, you have to fireform form those two chamberings. The 6x284 only requires you to neck down a 6.5x284 case to 6mm, it's very easy. A 6x284, with a 1-12 twist 30" barrel, will push a 75grn V-Max at 3900 to 4000fps and the 87grn V-Max at 3700 to 3750fps. The 6x284 will push the 105grn VLD bullets at 3400 to 3500fps. If you want to shoot the VLD bullets like the Lupa 105 Scenar, Hornady 105 A-Max and Sierria 105 SMK, a 1-8 or 1-8.5 twist barrel will allow these bullets to perform well. However, if you go with a 1-10 twist barrel you will be able to shoot the 75 V-Max and 87rn V-Max as well as the 105grn VLD bullets too.

I know guys who have tried the 243 WSSM and they all have rebarreled their rifles for either the 6x284, 243 AI and 6MM AI. They all said the 243 WSSM chambering has great potential if the brass problem can be solved. But until that happens, they all said they would NOT recommend the the 243 WSSM.

Also in order for you to change to a 243 WSSM, you are going to have to make many changes. If you go with the 6x284, 243 AI, 6MM AI, you will not have to make changes to the bolt face, so it would probably be cheaper to buy a barrel and have it chambered for the cartridges I have mentioned.

Good luck with your choice.

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Old 01-25-2008, 02:16 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Everett, WA
Posts: 421
My buddy has a 243 WSSM that shot very well. No problems shooting eggs out to 611yds. The rifle's 1:10 twist failed to stablize the VLD's over 100gr at long range and he lost interest. Load development for this caliber takes more time, it's picky. I'm a big fan of the regular 243 with 28" barrel... 105gr VLD's 3000fps.

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