Lightweight deer gun

Discussion in 'Large-Bore/Small-Bore Rifle/Shotgun' started by joncutt87, Nov 6, 2011.

  1. Sandman

    Sandman New Member

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    Anyone who uses a .243 will tell you that it will easily take any deer in this country. IMO it is the perfect deer caliber. I have larger, but seldom use them unless I am elk hunting. I have killed deer and large hogs well beyond 200 yards with mine with no problems. I use the 100grain loads and if you put that bullet where you are supposed to, the deer is going no where. And it doesn't matter if it is a northern whitetail or a West Texas deer.

    You will not be disappointed with the .243 should you go that route. I would also recommend the used Ruger M77. They are great rifles.
  2. Sandman

    Sandman New Member

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    I think a novice will wound more animals trying to use a larger caliber. I do not believe that you can compensate for a lack of ability with brute firepower. Rather than making up for a bad shot, that will cause bad shots.
  3. hunterfisher

    hunterfisher New Member

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    I'm with you, Sandman. The .243 will do the job on any deer in the country if hit proper. Last season I killed a, North Carolina, 10pt. Field dressed at 204 lbs. One shot to the boiler room with an, 85gr. Sierra BTHP put him down on the spot.
  4. reynolds357

    reynolds357 Former Guest

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    My experiences do not seem to agree. My wife being a prime example. She shot 4 deer with a .243 and my dog could not even find them. I finally told her I have had enough with this, hunt with my rifle. I gave her my .264 Win mag. loaded up to super screaming, primer backing, non reloadable cases, velocity. A very large 8 point buck walked out at 260 yards. She shot him right smack in the middle of the body hitting nothing but guts. The deer dropped like it was struck with a ton of rocks, got up and ran about 60 yards, leaving a blood and guts trail a blind man could follow. Had she shot him in the same place with the .243, a couple hours and a tired dog later we still would have found no deer.
    I can go on and on with similar examples.
  5. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

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    I can see one issue right there in print.. Your letting an uncertain shooter take an uncertain shot at far too great a distance for an uncertain shooter to be shooting in the first place. Its not the size of the caliber that drops game, its the placement of the bullet. Gutshooting a deer at 260 yds with a .264 winmag is cruel. That deer dropped because the kinetic shock of the bullet broke its spine. I guarantee you that deer suffered until it bled out and finally passed away..

    My go to deer load in .243 is 85 sierra gameking at 3200 fps. It will anchor deer with authority out to 300 yds. Cleanly and quickly. The .243 is more than capable as a deer cartridge.

    Point im trying to make is the size and power of the rifle/cartridge isnt a substitute for lack of shooting skill. My wife hunts deer with a .223 loaded with 53 gr Barnes TSX bullets, She can put a magazine full into 2 inches at 100 yds but i dont set her up in the hunting field for that long a shot. Her blind this season is set up where she will have a maximum of 61 yds between her and a deer. Her and I are both confident she can cleanly kill at that range, even though she is more than capable of 2 MOA 100 yd shots, thats is taking the adrenaline factor into account. And part of being a responsible hunter.
  6. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

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    fair enough ..

    we try to get folks reasonably schooled and skilled up before they head out to hunt ...

    any greeny or accidental bad vid tape of animals not shot well is ammo for the anti's here ..

    the pro gun lobby and the shooters associations got real good this way about a dozen years back now and our licence system now reflects that

    permit classes are

    target
    collectors
    hunting .. with basic requirements met before they are granted

    part of the fight back here is to push for self regulation ( the socialists like that crap)

    and we now look smarter and better than the antis
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2011
  7. joncutt87

    joncutt87 Active Member

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    We dont have any regulations on rifles that I can recall. The only pistol regs are larger than .24 caliber and you can't have it with you during bow or bp season.
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2011
  8. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

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    Here the only critters i CAN hunt with a handgun are ferals

    and if its feral , it's in peril

    24/7 all year round ( deer camels pigs foxes cat's rabbit's Buffalo all be feral)

    cannot hunt natives with a hand gun as a primary weapon .. big no no ..

    or any "season" animals ( duck season etc) with a handgun
    i think here there is no carry of hand guns in duck shoot's ( too many rules )
    i rarely duck shoot ..
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2011
  9. Boris

    Boris Former Guest

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    So the solution is give a novice jumpy shooter with no skills a weapon with more recoil?

    Seen with my own eyes a deer run after being shot with a 375 designed to take down elephants. Even worse was after I crawled on my hands and knees in the tangle he ran into to recover it AFTER a round from the 45 finished it, the original shooter claimed until I cut it open to show him his poor shot placement, he denied even hitting it. Reason was his gun takes elephants down. Pure genius.

    My idea of a light weight deer hunting weapon. Is my 25oz Glock. The shocker is with proper shot placement, I have yet to lose a deer after shooting one with it.

    You can give anyone a bigger gun. It won't fix chit. Poor skills are fixed ONLY by a good teacher and an even better student. Caliber used is inane. That's why it's called hunting, not shooting....
  10. reynolds357

    reynolds357 Former Guest

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    A .375 H&H does very little damage on game the size of a deer. Hyper velocity turns poor shots into killing shots. Big slow bullets just punch nice clean holes.
    My big rifles do not recoil much. They sound like cannons, but they do not recoil bad at all. I have a 7Rum that kicks like a .243. I have a 7WSM that kicks like a .223. For comparison, I have a .30-06 that kicks like a pack mule on steroids.
  11. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

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    To each his own I suppose in this case.. I hunt with great respect for my quarry. If im not absolutely 100% sure the bullet is going to kill cleanly and swiftly I dont take the shot. Thats the way I was taught to hunt by my grandfather and if he learned I was killing otherwise hed tan my hide with a razor strap and take all my guns away.

    Were getting a bit off subject here anyway.. Back on track fellas.. Were tossing Mr Jon some ideas about a good deer gun for Miss Ashley. Nothing more and nothing less. And as a general rule, the .243 is ideal for a beginner deer gun. Granted the shooter has to be able to put the metal in the meat where its gonna do the most good.
  12. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

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    Good on Both your grandfather and you ...
  13. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

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    And its the way my kids are taught to hunt as well. The boys and I have watched game wander by, unbeknownst to our presence, because they wouldnt present me with a clean shot opportunity.

    Heck i remember the first year I had Autumn in the blind with me. 3 doe came trotting accross the hay field in front of us. they never would stop. just a steady pace all the way across. Autumn later asked why i didnt shoot one.. I explained to her that there was a good chance Id miss the vitals and only hurt the deer becaus ethey were running. She said but the deer would probably die in the woods though right. I said yes, probably, but not before suffering for a long time first. And she said, Dad thats a nice thing to do for the deer. Im glad they die fast so they wont be hurt. I said, I am too.

    One of the best hunting moments of my life.
  14. joncutt87

    joncutt87 Active Member

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    Thats how I was taught too, she was shooting great with the .30's I just think that they scared her a little.
  15. Sandman

    Sandman New Member

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    I have been hunting with a .243 for almost 30 years. I got it when I was 10, but it is still my favorite rifle. I would guess that I have shot about 20 deer with it along with some turkeys, a few hogs, javelinas, etc. The longest a deer ever ran was about 100 yards, and it was hit in the heart and left a blood trail about two feet wide. Many have dropped in their tracks, a few have run 50 to 100 feet. I have never been in danger of losing one. A couple of years back I shot a big hog at 225 yards and it dropped like a rock. If you put the bullet in the vitals, they will go down, and quickly.

    I am training my two daughters right now. I will start them on a .222 or .223. Some might feel those rifles are too small. I do not. The girls will NOT bring them to the deer stand until they have proven to me at the range that they can put the bullet in the vitals EVERY time, and even then, I will limit their shots to ranges they are comfortable at. They have been working on it for some time and are getting better every time, but neither is at the point where they will get to bring a rifle along this year. When they are big enough to handle the recoil I will get them each a .243 and that will probably be the last rifle I buy them.
  16. carver

    carver Moderator

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    Sounds like what she might need is a little more time behind the gun! If she likes it, it fits her, then let her shoot it a bunch, that fear will go away. And as she become more familure with the gun, her groups will improve. I recomended the Lever gun due to the fact that they shoot hand gun caliber bullets, not much recoil, and they are light weight.
  17. jacksonco

    jacksonco New Member

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    I don't remember which one but at least one of the major ammo manufacturers produce low recoil offerings in some of their center-fire offerings. You may want to check that out unless you are just looking for a reason to get another gun.
  18. gcalloway

    gcalloway New Member

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    I am a big fan of the .243, with 100 grain bullets on deer. I have killed my share of hogs with that load as well. It is bullet placement that matters. The hogs I killed are all neck shots. You should have your charge shoot enough to be comfortable with the gun and the load and you watch enough of it to know what their capable of. I would be hard pressed to let a novice hunter take a shot over 100 yards even if they were using a heat seeking missle. I have a Handy Rifle in 243 topped with a 4X scope, I usually use with novice hunters. That way you give them 1 bullet at a time so when they shoot you know the gun is empty and a bit safer. MY personal 243 is a Styer with a 24 inch barrel and is is efffective out to 300 yards and even to 400 yards if the wind is quite. For long range shooting I prefer my 338 Remington Untra Mag with 250 grain bullets. Holds its head better.
  19. reynolds357

    reynolds357 Former Guest

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    That would be Remington. Have never shot them but seen plenty of them at Academy sports.
  20. reynolds357

    reynolds357 Former Guest

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    Thats quite a contrasting pair .243win and .338 Rum. ;)
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