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.223 for Deer Hunting

Old 10-23-2009, 04:27 PM
Typical Buck
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 585

Both my boys killed their first deer with a .20 ga, which kicks more than a .243. My oldest son killed his second deer with a .243 at age 10 and he's been using it ever since. After seeing the .243's results on deer, I bought my own .243 for deer / coyote and leave the .300 WSM for truly big game.

The .243 is perfect for a 10 year old IMO
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Old 10-23-2009, 05:36 PM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 564

Originally Posted by Ridge Runner
To all you nay sayers here is a list of what a 223 has done
took 9 of 10 top spots in the national highpower comps.
killed a prairie dog at 1,115 yards
shot under 1 MOA groups at 1 mile
got thousands of kids and females excited about deer hunting cause its a pleasant rifle to shoot and it works.
A gutshot deer doesn't know a 223 from a 300 win mag.
9 of 10 top spots in NHC means nothing in the world of deer hunting. (assumeing they were not inexperienced kids)

Killing a praire dog at 1115 means nothing in the world of deer hunting (an inexperienced kid?)

who shoots at deer over 1 mile??? (this one had to be done by a kid that has been shooting for less then a year)

If you are excited and start deer hunting because of a gun (not the actual hunt), then I say you are hunting for all the wrong reasons

.223 or .300, there is no excuse for gutshot deer with a gun. It is the sign of poor marksmanship and/or unethical shooting practices.

I have nothing more to contribute to the 223 debate.
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Old 10-23-2009, 06:06 PM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 564

I have read you posts before and know your affinity and skill for extreme long range shooting. I have no doubt that a shooter of your caliber can weild a 223 like a death ray when it comes to harvesting deer. Hunters with your marksmanship skills are rarer then few and far between. To impart your marksmanship skills and ability on the hunting population that as a whole group is marginal at best when it comes to marksmanship and think they can accomplish the same feats you can is overreaching plain and simple.

The standard of 1000ft/lbs is the rule I use and will always use when it comes to harvesting a deer. The average 55 grain 223 has about 1100 ft/lbs at the muzzle and drops below the 1000 threshold relatively soon after leaving the barrel. I have a 9 year old daughter that would love to harvest a deer. But she is not of the stature to handle a gun that fires ammo that produces the energy requirements I set forth. Untill she can, no deer hunting.
I am not bending my own rules just to get her in the feild to harvest a deer with marginal killing equipment.

I am curious to how all the pro 223 posters feel about using a 223 on something like an elk. The bull or cow will fall to a well placed broadside shot into the lungs (the argument used to justify using it on deer). I imagine none of you would even consider it as a viable elk round though.
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Old 10-23-2009, 06:42 PM
Typical Buck
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 564

Originally Posted by Ridge Runner
this says its accurate


very few people but one day I will take a deer at beyond 1 mile, my current best is 1,350 yards or .78 mile

sure but if your 10 years old and shooting a rifle that scares you its like going to school on a field trip looking foreward to it knowing your gonna get beat up by the local bully for your milk money

so your another great white hunter who has never made a bad shot, you must know alot about poor marksmanship, ethics are a personal matter which I do not discuss unless ya wanna hammer me about mine, which are mine alone and you obviously don't understand.
Why is it you didn't hit any of the points I made about the 223 being adequate for deer hunting, points which have been proven over and over again, but I recapped with what the 223 has done for the domestic side of shooting sports you had a comment about each one, have you ever deer hunted with a 22 cal rifle? have you ever saw a deer harvested with one? compared the bullet damage to a controlled expansion bullet from a larger caliber? Its pointless to go on, its obvious you don't know enough to know you don't know!

so an elk is roughly 7 times the weight of a deer, does it take 7000 ft/lbs of energy to take one? c'mon man join the real world, all your doing is depriving your kid of hunting, cause millions of deer have fell to less than 1K ft/lbs of energy.

Never said I have not made a bad shot. I did take a shot at a deer that I never should have taken (walking at 200 yards, not my skill set) I regret that shot to this day. Luckily the deer traveled down a fencerow to my dad who killed him. With taht said, I have never made a bad shot on a deer that was within my skills (standing at no more the 125 yards). I don't shoot at running deer either.

I have no doubt that a deer can be killed with less the 1000 ftlbs of NRG. Hell I do it with about 80 lbs outta my bow, but the terminal performance from a broadhead is a lot different then that of a bullet. Anyhow, as far as depriving my kid from hunting is my choice not years. My opinion is largely derived from an experience I had with a friend of mine when we started hunting at 10. He was shooting at .45 cal muzzleloader loaded with a patched round ball sitting on 60 grains of powder. He could shoot baseball sized groups with his Hawken at 50 yards. Opening morning of his first day hunting he has a small buck broadside within 50 yards. He is hunting with his dad. Gets set pulls trigger and hit s the deer in the front shoulder. I am sure millions of deer have fallen to a 45 cal ML. just like this one did. Oh I forgot to mention, they found the deer a week later about 1/2 mile from the shot. First hunt first deer all a failure attibuted to a underpowered gun in the hands of a novice shooter that could cut holes from the bench. To this day, my friend still suffers confidence issues from that initial hunt. My kids has lots of time hunt in front of her. Why risk the future for a little fun and pleasure today should she suffer the same situation as my first hunting buddy did 2o years ago????
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Old 10-23-2009, 07:03 PM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 5,425

Back in the late 60s and early 70s I used a 22-250 for damage permit hunting, at that time we had a local law prohibiting centerfires over .22 caliber...I killed 50-60 deer with that gun and 55gr Remington bullets...When I started this practice I wasn't old enough to drive and my dad would drop me off on one of the farms and pick me up after dark...

Funny, those deer didn't care that I was only 13-14 years old....Those hit in the lungs ran 75-100 yards and keeled over, those hit at the base of the neck dropped right there...

Fast forward about 30 years...My younger brother picked up a used 22-250 on a trade, had me sight it in with 60gr Nosler Partitions...

My niece has killed 14 deer with this gun over the past 5-6 years...

Dang deer didn't notice that she was 14 when she started...Only 2 ever took another step and all had nice exit holes...
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Old 10-23-2009, 07:27 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 19

I started my son off at the age of 8 with a .223 because of recoil and he used it for 3 years until I bought him a .243. He shot 4 deer with the .223 and none went more than 75 yds. I would certainly recommend the .243 over the .223 because of the better chances for a good bloodtrail but I would still start off a very young hunter with the .223 which they will enjoy shooting more and have more accuracy because of the lighter recoil. If they put the bullet where it needs to be the .223 will be fine!
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Old 10-24-2009, 11:44 AM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Roanoke, Virginia
Posts: 2,335

You need to check your state regulations first. Then go from there. Here, .243 is the minimum.

.243 was my first deer rifle. Of course, I was no where near petite at 13 years old...but I had no problems shooting the .243 caliber.

I would get the .243 just because of more power, and not that much difference in recoil. Get her a heavier gun (to reduce muzzle jump) and get her a good recoil pad. She should be fine.
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Old 10-24-2009, 02:20 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Kentuckay.
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My first deer was with a AR-15 .223. She"ll be fine, just make sure she knows where the heart is
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Old 10-24-2009, 07:55 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 97

Get her a .243 with the 100 grain; put a real good recoil pad on it; although I don't know why---a .243 does not kick what-so-ever. A
.223 will kill deer, in the hands of someone who knows what their doing---not for an inexperienced kid.
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Old 10-24-2009, 08:39 PM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 1,304

And a .243 is so much better because it's so much bigger? LOL! Please.

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