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Question about the .243 Winchester round.

Discussion in 'Hunting, Fishing & Camping' started by mossy500camo, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. mossy500camo

    mossy500camo ammo found

    Sep 27, 2004
    Anybody here hunt whitetail or other like size game with the .243 Winchester? I like the little round myself. Others in the gang are always putting the .243 down. Saying things like how far did you have to track your deer,etc. Im like "shot placement" man! I really dont think that a .300 win mag is required for whitetails. I mean good grief the magnum rounds destroy meat, dang near guts and skins the animal as well. Your take?
  2. Rolledup4s


    May 18, 2005
    whitetail and smaller the .243 is great. I have one in my collection. its also a great starter round. not much recoil and youth model works great for kids and women hunters. tell em piss off and hang your horns on the wall! :wavey:

  3. CanyonMan

    CanyonMan In The Saddle

    Jul 26, 2002
    Out to 150yds it is a great little deer gun, with 100gr bullets. I know guys that have killed a good many deer with the 243. I had a 6mm rem for a lot of years, not to much different. It is plenty good for whitetails. I would not hesitate to answer your question with YES. Stay with in the rifles limits, (for me that would be 150yds max with this caliber on deer) and the gun is very capable of harvesting your deer at that range. I am just not a big advocate of using that light weight bullet in a small case at 3/4/500 yds.

    I hunted with the 6mm for several years, when I was young, then went to the 7mm rem mag because I wanted a 'one gun do all' from deer to large game such as elk and moose etc, and at super long ranges with enough punch to take care of things at 4/500yds.

    Some of the ranges we have out here on antelope and even deer can get really long. Even some of the elk can call for a longer range for us (depending on where were hunting). But I do like the 243/6mm for deer, it is really an accurate sweet little round, just don't think it should be used on deer at really long range..

    Good Luck

    Last edited: Jan 2, 2010
  4. klt1986


    Feb 28, 2007
    Not a big fan of the .243 but it is an excellent deer hunting round. It is also capable of taking deer to atleast 300 yards(assuming the hunter is capable). In fact, Federal even loads the 100 grain NBT that carries a little over 1,000 FPE at 400 yards. The 243 is a great gun as it has little muzzle blast and light recoil. All this leads to a rifle that is very easy to shoot accurately.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2009
  5. A great kid or youth round. Rifles typically chamber in this round are very accurate and low recoil. Ammo is plentiful right up their with 308win and 30-06 and good bullets selections.

    It also draws a lot of negative attention from mis-informed shooters who claims it's too lite or injury and maimes animals. But they are not 100% correct with these statements.
  6. Big Bird

    Big Bird NRA Life Member

    Aug 7, 2003
    Louisville KY
    I have an old custom Sako in .243 and use it from time to time. I've probably only killed about a half dozen deer with it but no complaints. I've been using the 87 grain Sierra Game King and usually get complete side to side penetration. I can't recall a single deer I've shot with a .243 walking or running anywhere beyond 20 or 30 yards.

    Inside of 350 yards it has all you need to kill deer which are not hard to kill anyhow.
  7. Brass Nazi

    Brass Nazi NO BRASS FOR U!

    Jul 4, 2005
    Tell your buddies to don an antlered hat and to go stand out in a field.
  8. thanospro

    thanospro Bring it.

    Jul 25, 2002
    My first couple of white tails were with a .243. My longest shot is usually under 100 yards, so distance isn't an issue for me. My dad has slayed dozens of deer over the decades with it.
  9. paynter2

    paynter2 It ain't over Millennium Member

    Apr 25, 1999
    upper mid-west
    The 243 is one excellent deer cartridge. As someone above posted, deer aren't hard to kill. If you shoot a leg off with a 243 or 7mm Mag the deer may run for a long way. But the missed shot is the reason, not the caliber.

    If you want to buy one gun and intend to hunt elk or moose along with deer, yes, a larger caliber would be my choice. But, I have many calibers in my gun safes and the 243 or (preferably) 6mm Rem is my choice, for whitetail, all the time.

    I've killed bucks out to 440 yards with a 6mm. I know the distance because my stand was on one fence line and the buck was on the next fence - 440 yards away. The stand was on an open meadow. The usual shot was under 100 yards. But, I saw the deer on a ridge across the meadow. I know the distance and the ballistics of the 85gr Sierra (HPBT). I let one fly and popped between two ribs going in and two ribs going out. No expansion. It walked up to a tree, layed down and bled out. I didn't get there for about 1/2 hour - I had two other bucks down below the stand. I shot one before the long shot and one after... I never had a chance to reload - they were all taken with the original magazine load. It was a great stand for a few years until others started ot encroach. Good times - 6mm (.243) caliber is great for deer.
  10. I killed my first deer at the age of 7 with a .243...and many more since then. I think that it is a great started gun here in texas with the smaller hill country deer. Remember: SHOT PLACEMENT!!
  11. paynter2

    paynter2 It ain't over Millennium Member

    Apr 25, 1999
    upper mid-west
    What did you switch to when you go older? Did you feel you needed more power to kill those deer?

    I did the same thing. I used a .32 Winchester Special when I was a kid. I'd shoot the deer and they'd fall down dead. As I got bigger I got a 30-06. I'd slam those deer with 180gr. soft points and they run 100 yards and die.

    The '06 went thru-and-thru and killed any tree that happened to be on the other side of the deer. My .32 would whack those deer and deliver nearly 100% of the energy to the animal.

    So, I downsized to a 6mm Rem - now I use a .243 (virtually identical). The deer (now) go down where' they're shot.

    Note - as far as I can tell, all of them were dead - no difference in caliber regarding the final outcome.
  12. sourdough44


    Jul 23, 2007
    Use the proper bullet with good placement & the 243 is fine. The placement applies to any round. With the 243 there are plenty of 'varmint' bullets out there that should not be tried on deer. I used a 95 grn partition & 243 this Fall on a deer. It worked as well as my 308 loads.
  13. Proper bullet selection is very important for the .243.

    The .243 is a dual purpose round with both Varmint and Big Game bullets available. Shoot a deer with a varmint round and you will probably only cause a shallow wound that will eventually kill the deer, but not where you can find it.

    Proper bullet selection is important for any caliber. If you have mostly small deer, like we do here in VA, and you pick a heavier bullet that is more properly designed for elk, bear and moose, it will zip through a small deer with barely any expansion.
  14. ajstrider

    ajstrider Silent Warrior

    Apr 17, 2005
    Western Kentucky
    I think the .243 is an excellent deer round when the right bullet is chosen and proper shot placement, but that goes for pretty much every other round out there too. I would probably be hunting with a .243 myself except I have my father's .308 now and I choose to carry on the tradition of hunting with it just like my father would if he was still here.
  15. Jonesee


    Apr 16, 2009

    Where in the upper midwest is it legal to take 3 deer in one day? I've hunted a bit up there and for the most part they have strict limits. 1 for archery season, 1 for m/l season, 1 for gun season, sometimes an anterless tag or an any deer season.

    Even in Florida you are limited to 2 per day.
  16. paynter2

    paynter2 It ain't over Millennium Member

    Apr 25, 1999
    upper mid-west
    When I lived in Wisconsin you could 'party hunt'. That is, you could fill the tag of another member of your hunting 'party'. Otherwise, if you shot a buck you would be done hunting.

    I don't know for sure it that is still the case - I suspect that it is. I think it's pretty common most places.
  17. Jonesee


    Apr 16, 2009
    Interesting, I've never heard of that. maybe the guys I hunt with up there just never mentioned it to protect their tag. I'm positive Michigan does not allow a party hunt.
  18. SAWMAN


    Aug 19, 2006
    NW FLA.
    For whitetail deer the .243 with the proper bullet is all you need.

    I was a Master Maine Guide for some 20 years and have seen sports absolutely hammer deer(@100-150yds) with the cartridge. That was even before some of the excellent bullets that are available were even thought of.

    Shoot a Nosler Partition or a "no lead" style and you will completely penetrate the animal with hydrostatic shock enough to knock him off his feet. I have seen deer killed with the .243Win that weighed 275-300lbs on the hoof.

    Shot placement is the key ingredient.
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010
  19. sourdough44


    Jul 23, 2007
    Yes that 'party hunt' is still allowed in WI. That means as long as you had a deer license you can still hunt & shoot one & let the buddy tag it. You have to be hunting near each other. I've hunted in several states & WI is the only one I've ever seen it. Some talk about getting rid of it but there's a lot of tradition involved. It wouldn't bother me if it went away.


    Feb 1, 2006
    S.A. TEXAS
    Would a 100gr power point be a good 243 deer bullet ????????? :dunno: