243 for whitetails

Discussion in 'Deer Hunting' started by mooser, Mar 20, 2013.

  1. mooser

    mooser Well-Known Member

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    In the past I have always used a 30-06 for deer. Recently I picked up a ruger american in 243 and decided to try it on deer since i had been hearing so much about hunting with this caliber. I chose to shoot barnes 85gf. triple shock bullets. Well let me tell you I never expected the results I got. I shot 2 deer with this bullet this year . Both were hit in the forward lung area, one at 80yds and the other at about 125. When I went to field dress them I saw the same results in both. They both dropped right in thier tracks and when I gutted them both were bloodshot all the way back into the lower intestine area, thats a lot of shock. Looks like I have a new caliber for deer now.
     
  2. wnc-coyote

    wnc-coyote Well-Known Member

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    What was your load for these bullets. I have some ordered to try in mine next deer season.
     

  3. mooser

    mooser Well-Known Member

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    45 grains of imr 4831 with a remington 9 1/2 primer. These are very accurate, 1 in. at 200 yards
     
  4. biged57

    biged57 Active Member

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    Thanks for the info will try it in my daughter in laws gun
     
  5. wnc-coyote

    wnc-coyote Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. Do you know what kind of velocity you are getting.
     
  6. ICANHITHIMMAN

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

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    I got my first deer with the 243 this year as well, at about 100m I thought I missed the way it took off. went about 80 yards
     
  7. mooser

    mooser Well-Known Member

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    My chronograph says 3150. I only have a 22 inch barrel.
     
  8. joseph

    joseph Well-Known Member

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    I have used Searra 85 gr. HPBT Game Kings for 30 years plus. They are devastating & extremely accurate. To find out what is your most accurate load is you need to do a ladder test with your rifle at 100 yds. Use some factory ammo to sight in with first. Load one bullet at the minimum charge and increase each shell by 1/2 grain until you get to the maximum load. While using very steady front & rear rests aim at the center of your target for "EACH" shot. Your shots should hit low at first then move up with each shot until you have 2 to 4 shots that hit in the same group. Then the rest may move up on the target. The smallest group will be your most accurate load with the components you are testing. I used IMR 4350 powder and CCI primers. gun)- - - - - - - - - - - -

    joseph

    PS: You need to keep track of each shot so you know what powder weight was in each shot.
     
  9. CogburnR

    CogburnR Well-Known Member

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    Many of the bullets for the 243 do not expand enough for deer. Coulntelss deer have run off and died with a pencil hole in them from people using 100g bullets that don't expand.

    The 85g Sierra is a consistent performer that really maximizes the 243 lethality potential. It also is an accurate bullet. Expect a 50 cent sized hole or better through the ribcage.

    Berger has possibly made a bullet that competes with the Sierra. The 95g Classic Hunter. I have a couple of my Buddies shooting them and so far performance is good.
     
  10. sendero72

    sendero72 Well-Known Member

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    You may want to consider the 105 A-max. Works extremely well.
     
  11. mtntrapper1

    mtntrapper1 Well-Known Member

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    Ive shot a ton of MT whitetails in Montana in river bottoms, quite a few from a floating canoe, lots off the hills above with a 243, its my favorite deer caliber. 95 and 105's, never had any run off. Shot many a MT antelope with 243 also.

    Get an accurate one and a good scope, its a great deer caliber.
     
  12. wnc-coyote

    wnc-coyote Well-Known Member

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    I fully agree with the statement that the 85 Sierra is a solid performer. However I would be curious as to what bullets in the 100g you are talking about. I have seen dozens of deer takin with 100g bullets that didn't move after the shot. I have loaded nosler partitions, hornady spbt interlock, Sierra game king and pro hunter, and probably my favorite is the Speer spbt. I have not been disappointed in the performance of any of these bullets.
     
  13. CogburnR

    CogburnR Well-Known Member

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    Probably the most run offs I have seen were with the 100g Cor-lokt's .

    Most of the bullets you have listed are not available easily in loaded ammo.

    I have shot deer in the lungs with them and had them run over a 1/4 mile without showing the hit or leaving a blood trail to fall over dead. Tracked some down that the people swore were not hit too.

    I have had one big muley trot 300 yards in a circle spewing blood 6' out of a quarter sized hole from a Sierra 85ghpbt. You probably won't get much better performance and yet the deer went a good way. It left a trail a blind man could follow.

    I have never seen a 100g exit hole much bigger than a dime from a 243. Maybe some of them work ok and I have some 105 Amax's to try on deer. All I know is that everybody that uses my loads swear that they kill deer way faster than anything the used before. Most people use either Remington, Federal or Winchester ammo.
     
  14. wnc-coyote

    wnc-coyote Well-Known Member

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    I have never used any Core lokts so I can't comment on those. But if you were interested in trying something in the 100g. I am loading the Speer spbt with a heavy load of either h414 or h4350 in my 26" and getting right at 3100fps and great accuracy with both. I generally see at least quarter sized exit wounds especially if a shoulder bone is hit.