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salukipv1 03-13-2008 04:18 PM

A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?
I'd like to get a lightweight set up, mainly for antelope. Which may carry over as a varmint rifle, or a backup for mule deer.

I want something in the .243 caliber, the cartridges I'm considering are .243 Win, or ackley improved which I believe can shoot .243 win, 6mm Rem., 6mm/284, .240 weatherby

I plan to spend $1000-$2200 ish, though would debate an awesome rifle if it were $3000 or less. The rifles so far I'm considering are; Weatherby mark V ultralightweight, HS precision lightweight, Christenson Arms Extreme, maybe a remington custom, not sure if they make a lightweight synthetic custom? bolt action of course, maybe 22" or 24" barrel.

I want a synthetic stock, I want something nice, something certainly under 1moa, and 1/2 moa or better sounds great.

Then is the 6mm/284, or 6.5mm/284 used as a target rifle, like 1000yd range more often?

handloader1 03-13-2008 04:51 PM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?
I would go with the .240 Wby. Mag. I think Christianson Arms builds a 6mm/8mm Rem. Mag. that weighs around 5 lbs. Good luck.

wyotimberghost 03-13-2008 05:00 PM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?
I got a heavy-barreled .243 for vamints, speed goats, and whitetail does. That extra weight sure makes it easy to hold the rifle steady in Wyoming's never ending wind. I can flip out the bipod and be solid as a rock, which is nice for when I shoot prairie dogs. But I wouldn't recommend it unless you're in shape, because it can start to feel a little heavy after packing it around for a couple of hours.

SwampCollie 03-13-2008 05:10 PM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?
A lot of this answer depends on whether you are handloading or not. I'm guessing you are if you are considering an AI cartridge (and yes, .243 Ackley rifles MUST fire standard .243 Win in order to fireform brass.... so you'll be shooting .243 win out of it initially.... then reloading the new Ackley 'Improved' fireformed brass in order to achieve greater velocities).

The hard part about what you are looking for, is anything lightweight is going to have a very lightweight barrel. Having a barrel that thin, and getting sub-MOA accuracy out of it reliably is no mean feat. Granted, you are after the first well placed shot, which is as it should be, but follow up shots start walking VERY fast with light barrels... which is why its hard to make a light weight varmint gun for volume shooting. It just all depends on what kinda varmint hunting you do. Lets stick with speed goats for now just to make it easy:

The 6.5/284 is largely a benchrest cartridge.... and its not a .243/6mm.... a 6.5 is a .264 which is a fair piece larger when it comes to small caliber centerfires. The 6mm/284 is one hot round, and in a light barrel... its going to be tough to control in my opinion. I'm not a gun builder, just a tinkerer, so you may well have an expert on the subject tell you otherwise. I am a fan of the plain old 6mm Rem... sadly, not very many rifle makers are. Not unless you are buying just an action and having a custom barrel made for it. Which you certainly can do in any of the calibers listed.

Since lightweight was the first adjective you gave us.... I'd recommend a Kimber Montana in .243 Win. It will not be terribly expensive to have it reamed to .243 Ackley Improved. I own a 30/30 AI, and it shoots the standard 30/30 win rounds extremely well, though the point of impact difference even at close range is 'huge'. It would, however, in a pinch give you the option of shooting inexpensive .243 ammo for practice or varmints, while shooting Ackley handloads with premium bullets for deer/goats whatever.

salukipv1 03-13-2008 07:48 PM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?
is Sako a controlled feed or push feed action? how about kimber?

johnnybravoo77 03-13-2008 08:23 PM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?

Both are control feed.

skeeter 7MM 03-13-2008 10:05 PM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?
If going the custom route and wanting what you claim reloading will be a must. I assume you either do that now or plan to by your potential cartridges listings. As far as which one I can't really say, no interest inthe .24's. I'll leave that to those who have knowledge.

However in regards to the custom portion canget a donor action (which ever you prefer or like) then have it built to your specs and get exactly what you need/want.All you need is the right platformnot the exact chambering and build away.

Pavomesa 03-14-2008 02:07 AM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?
I'm a great believer in keeping it simple. I'd go with a standard .243 Win simply because this is already max case capacity for the cartridge. Anything bigger is a waste of powder and barrel.

Secondly you are looking for a HUNTING rifle. Frankly, I don't give a hoot in hell for a rifle that will shoot sub MOA. This is some sacred cow most shooters rave about that really means almost zippo in the real hunter's world. I once had a .257 Robertscustom built on Mauser action that never ever shot a group smaller than 2.25" at 100 yds no matter what bullet and powder I tried...and I tried a bunch. But hunting that rifle was a death ray and I made some of the best shots in my life with that gun. Nothing was safe out to about 325 yds. That rifle simply liked to hunt and could care less about targets.:):) And that was fine with me because I was a hunter...not a target shooter.

On the other hand, I've had rifles that would easily shoot sub MOA and they never accomplished anything spectacular at all hunting.

So ask yourself are you wanting a rifle to hunt with or a rifle for playing off a benchrest? If you're a hunter, forget the other BS. Get a standard .243, or even a light one. The advantages of light rifles for a hunterFAR out weigh the any supposed disadvantages. And the assumption that a rifle is light therefore automatically not nearly as accurate is another popular myth. The most accurate rifle I ever shot was a .220 Swift with a barrel so thin you could pick your teeth with it.

Get you a good little .243, scope it well and live happily ever after. It's been done by many before.:) No big mystery.

Swampdog 03-14-2008 03:58 AM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?
salukipv1,Sounds like you are coming down with with the same virus the I have .:D:D:D"THE NEED FOR SPEED".If you are looking for accuracy,speed, craftmanship,weight (Idon't know about) .Talk to ridgerunner about the allen mags. he has I don't know if Mr.Allen does a 6mm,But if he does it will be a smoker.If anybody knows it will be ridge.I am thinking of worrying himmyself.He lit a fire in me on another post about his 7mm allen mag.with some awesome velocities.;)

eldeguello 03-14-2008 04:13 AM

RE: A bunch of questions....? which .243 rifle for antelope ?

On the other hand, I've had rifles that would easily shoot sub MOA and they never accomplished anything spectacular at all hunting.
While it is certainly possible to have great results hunting with a rifle that is only capable of "2.25 MOA", anything less than that is an advantage in that it eliminates a little more of one of the variables that go into having a bullet strike closer to where you want it to land, AT ANY RANGE.

I would venture that any time a very accurate rifle fails to accomplish anything "at all spectacular while hunting", it is NOT due to the use of a highly accurate rifle.

However, I do agree that to keep things reasonable, the .243 Win. may be the best choice. Personally, I would use the 6mm Remington, as I consider it a slightly better cartridge design, and since I handload all my ammunition, lack of awide variety of factory loads is of no concern to me at all.

I would avoid things like the .240 Weatherby, as it hasone of those damned (and worthless eye candy) belts on it. If I were to go for a .30/'06-capacity case for the 6mm, I'd choose the 6mm/284. However, as noted above, you do not want a cartridge of such a great powder capacith that it willeat upyour barrel before you find a good load for it!

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