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Is a .243 a good deer gun?

Old 10-30-2007, 12:17 AM
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Default Is a .243 a good deer gun?

I have been using my .300 win mag for years hunting both deer and elk, im looking for a gun i can use just for deer. I have been thinking of a .243 which i would also use as my cyote gun as well. Any thoughts?
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Old 10-30-2007, 02:13 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?

Yes, if you take only broadside shots into the ribs. A .243 won't hold together on bad angle shots. I use a 25-06 and it is awesome. As I said, if you are experienced and patient and willing to wait for the right shot the .243 will get the job done. Good luck.
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Old 10-30-2007, 04:31 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?

A .243 is fine for deer,antelope, and coyotes. I've used it for years.

Yes, you should pick your shot as you would with any caliber. Carrying a bone-crusher to the woods should not bea substitute for propershot placement.
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Old 10-30-2007, 05:00 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?

Depends on where your hunting. A .243 is pretty good if you want to practice tracking deer. .257 Roberts or a .260 will work to perfection.
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Old 10-30-2007, 05:32 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?

The .243 will be fine. If you compare ballistics between the .243, .260, .257 Roberts & the .25-06 you will see there is not much difference. I use a .25-06 and a .30-06 for deer but would not have a problem using a .243.
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Old 10-30-2007, 06:53 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?

ORIGINAL: USAF_hunter

Depends on where your hunting. A .243 is pretty good if you want to practice tracking deer. .257 Roberts or a .260 will work to perfection.
You're joking, right? A .257 Roberts is "perfect", but a .243 is "pretty good if you want to practice tracking"? Really?

The .243, with a 100 grain bullet, at 100 yards has over 1600 ft. lbs. of energy. The Roberts, with a 117 grain bullet, at 100 yards has 1363 ft. lbs. The .243 has almost as much energy at 200 yards as the Roberts does at 100.

But.. Yeah... that extra 17 grains of weight and 14 thousandths of an inch of diameter turn the Roberts into the Hammer of Thor.[/sarcasm]

BigDawgWill: If anyone tells you that the .243 is no good for whitetails, it's because (a) they've never shot a deer with a .243, (b) they're a lousy shot or are so afflicted with ADHD that they don't want to wait for a good shot, or (c) they simply don't have a clue what they're talking about and are just making crap up as they go along. I used to hunt with a .30-06. I switched to a .243 a couple years ago, and the deer I've shot have actually gone less distance after the shot with my .243 than they did with the 06. Just pick your shot.
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Old 10-30-2007, 07:06 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?

My cousin is small framed and doesn't like to shoot high recoil rifles. He has used a .243 all of his life to shoot deer. He has killed dozens and almost never has to track one. His three daughters have all killed deer with a .243. In the past three weeks, literally dozens of kids in Louisiana (and everywhere else, I'm sure) have been using .243s to kill deer (in fact, judging from the pics on our local websites, they have been mowing them down). As with any rifle, shot placement is key.
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Old 10-30-2007, 07:23 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?




[align=center][/align]
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Status: online Depends on where your hunting. A .243 is pretty good if you want to practice tracking deer. .257 Roberts or a .260 will work to perfection.

I call BS on this...The .243 made the .257 Roberts obsolete...Forget the .260, it's a dying cartridge...I have a buddy that bought one the first year, couldn't get it to group 140s...He ended up reloading, then switched to a .243 after he helped me clean a few dozen deer...


Posts: 36
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Status: online Depends on where your hunting. A .243 is pretty good if you want to practice tracking deer. .257 Roberts or a .260 will work to perfection.
I call BS on this as well.....

I own one centerfire rifle...A 1980 model Ruger .243...I have killed over 150 whitetails with this gun, from 3 steps to 300 yards...Never lost a one...If you want to drop a deer, just put the bullet in the shoulder blade...I have killed them from sharp quartering away and quartering towards, no problem....

If you want a bullet that exits, use the 100 gr Remington CoreLokts, 100 gr Federal Nosler Partition or the 100gr Hornaday Custom InterBond...If shots will be over 200 yards I have had good luck with the Federal Premium 85gr HPBT Sierra GameKing...The 100gr Federal Premium Sierra SPBT GameKing is also a good bullet, but didn't give consistant exit holes for me inside 50 yards...
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Old 10-30-2007, 07:42 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?

I have hunted with a .243 for nearly thirty years, I have lost a couple of deer but it was my fault not the caliber. This is an old, old argument and you will hear different opinions on both sides. Just remember a deer is easy to kill if you put the shot in the right place and the .243 is an inherently accurate round.
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Old 10-30-2007, 07:52 AM
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Default RE: Is a .243 a good deer gun?

Both my kids have used a .243 youth model to take 5 deer now. None traveled more than 50 yards after the shot, and the most recent was dropped in his tracks by my 10 yr old with a hard quartering to shot placed perfectly in front of the near shoulder. Bullet wiped out one lung, most of the second lung, cut most of the arteries holding the heart and thru the opposite ribs. The bullet was just under the skin and in near perfect mushroomed shape. I would not hesitate to hunt with that little gun myself if I gun hunted anymore.

My daughter has moved on to a nice 25-.06 that her g'pa gave her. It is a nice deer caliber as well, but certainly more kick and noise.
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