.223 vs .243

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by Florida2Texas, Feb 7, 2009.

  1. Florida2Texas

    Florida2Texas G&G Newbie

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    I know I'm going to get bombarded with answers but hey, I asked. I am taking my kids 10 and 11 hunting this year and going to buy them there first rifle. They will share and not exactly sure if it should be a .223 or .243. It will be a Remington and would like it to find a bull barrel. Any replies to confuse me more are welcome. Thanks
  2. SmallGame2100

    SmallGame2100 Suspended

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    I'm assuming they've shot one before?

    I've seen some nice single shot .223's
    NEF, not a remington but NEF is a reliable company.
  3. Florida2Texas

    Florida2Texas G&G Newbie

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    They both are very good with my 22 mag, very accurate. this will be for deer hunting in Texas and I will not let them shoot over 100yds. We will be close in the ground blinds. I do like the single shot.
  4. SmallGame2100

    SmallGame2100 Suspended

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    I've seen [online, may vary locally], NEF .223 single shot was a little over $250.

    Just something to look into, if interested.
  5. Florida2Texas

    Florida2Texas G&G Newbie

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    I guess my main question is going to be will a 223 be enough for a deer kill? Or should I just go on and get the 243 insted?
  6. telkev

    telkev G&G Newbie

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    Get the 243. It has little to no more felt recoil than the 223, and is a better round if you are hunting deer. I have 2 of them for both of my girls, and neither has a problem with recoil. In my opinion, I would stay away from getting a bull barrel for a kid. Most of the Remington youth models are heavier than other brands to begin with, and they will have trouble with the weight. I have both the Remington 700 and NEF handirifle in 243, and have no complaints about either.
  7. FortyXDM

    FortyXDM Super Moderator

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    Florida - I agree with telkev here. The worst thing for a young hunter can experience is a wounded animal that dies slowly. A quick humane kill is much the better. You didn't say if you are a handloader, but if so, you can load cast bullets down to about 1300 fps with the 243 and have all but no recoil for hours of practice. If you want info on this, pm me and I will post it here for everyone. (or repost the request here) It is in a gun mag by a writer who's son uses the 243. Also, if you don't reload, you could practice with the lighter 80 gr bullet which may decrease recoil a bit. The practice is where the boys will feel the gun. Actual hunting they will never feel the light recoil of that caliber. Just make sure they learn to handle the gun safely at ALL times and practice as much as possible.
    For your info the recoil of a scoped 8 lb rifle is about 8 - 9 lbs max for that cal.

    Tom
  8. FortyXDM

    FortyXDM Super Moderator

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    Florida - I should have included this in my earlier post, but if you don't reload and you have two boys that may quickly learn to hunt and shoot, you soon will be. It is a great sport for Dad and boys both. They will learn discipline (because they HAVE to follow strict rules) and you will build a bond between you and the boys. So....lots of shooting....start looking for used reloading equip. Not expensive really.

    Tom[​IMG][​IMG]
  9. Red_Nekked

    Red_Nekked G&G Newbie

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    the 223 is a good round. I have only found a few guns i really enjoyed in the caliber but none i really use hunting very often. but I have no complaints really about the round itself. but when i went for something more verstatile my first and quite posibly favorite deer rifle was a 243. it was super easy to handle and had enough power to take down those first dear and eventually my first few bears. if its a gun you plan to keep around (i'm sure one of your kids will end up keeping it) I would go with a multiple capacity mag in bolt action 243. your less likely to be disapointed 9again, thats just what I think) that way the gun doesn't lose its versatility when they grow older and want to use the gun elsewhere.
  10. GlockMeister

    GlockMeister G&G Enthusiast

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    I also vote for getting them a bolt action in .243. Especially since this is their first time. I think and feel, unless the deer is hit in the right spot with a .223, the odds are it could end up running off and suffering, again, especially since this will be their first time and even though you say they;re very accurate with a .22mag, doesn't mean they will be with a rifle with a tad more recoil and where and when their adreniline will be pumping like crazy.

    But either way, just make sure the LOP (length of pull) is correct. No matter what you get them, make sure it fits them.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2009
  11. nathangdad

    nathangdad G&G Newbie

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    If you kids are young and smaller in stature I would

    go with a .223 initially then move up to a .243 Winchester after they have become comfortable and proficient with the .223.

    A lot to being successful with a rifle is starting off with light recoil and muzzle blast then moving upward. In this way bad habits such as flinching have much less chance to start. Also, confidence starts young and stays
    with them.

    I have known too many people (adults included) that start off with too much gun then give up.
  12. GotCoffee

    GotCoffee G&G Enthusiast

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    My vote is also for the 243.
  13. samuel

    samuel G&G Newbie

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    I doubt that they would notice much difference in recoil between the two.May as well lean on the side of bigger bullets and more power. sam.
  14. Florida2Texas

    Florida2Texas G&G Newbie

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    Y'all sure have been helpful. I think the answer is going to be a single shot .243. They are very safe and I enjoy watching them exercise safety while they are practicing, it does make me proud. My daughter is the oldest and she is ready for the hunts to start. I will make sure the LOP is good for both.
    Last question. Ballistics are not that much different from 75g to 80g. So in 100yd or closer shot I am leaning towards just 75g, and if it's a little farther then they will be good to 150 and just dropping at 200yds. Is there that much difference in recoil between 75g and 80g? Thanks for all y'alls help.
  15. Steve

    Steve Master Gunsmith Staff Member

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    GO withthe 100 grn soft nose it will give the terminal preformance that you are looking for and is a much better round on deer, the smaller grn bullets are more for varmit hunting and could possibly hit a bone and blow up leaving you with a wounded animal and a very bad experience for you children, and yes i use a .243 and have killed many deer using the 100 grn bullets and that is what my to boys grew up using. Good luck and good hunting.
    Steve
  16. jaybo

    jaybo G&G Newbie

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    .243

    I vote for the .243. I used one for many years when I lived in Texas and the calibre never let me down deer hunting. The recoil is mild enough for most youngsters. The other thing to take into consideration in the choice is whether or not the center fire .22 is legal for deer. When I lived it Texas it was not.
  17. Windwalker

    Windwalker G&G Newbie

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    .243 with 100 gr. bullet. The recoil is mild and this is a great deer hunting round.
  18. deadzero

    deadzero G&G Enthusiast Forum Contributor

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    go with the 243 for sure. the 223 is more suited as a varmint round. (granted, a well placed shot is effective on deer), but the 243 with 100gr. projectile is a great starter gun for young hunters. and if you get into handloading, Hornady makes a 58gr V-Max bullet for the 243 that should be an awsome varmint round. That little thing must be a screamer. after hearing about that I'm still kicking myself for selling my old 243.
  19. telkev

    telkev G&G Newbie

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    100 gr bullet is the best choice for deer. My 65 lb, 7 year old daughter has no problems with recoil shooting them out of a NEF handirifle. Just make sure they have good ear protection, because the muzzle blast is quite loud.
  20. texnmidwest

    texnmidwest Sir Loin of Beef Forum Contributor

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    One more vote for the 243. Depending on where in Texas you plan to hunt the 243 will take the larger deer much better. I hunted for years with a 220 swift in Texas. Only once did I need a follow up shot. But, I would opt for the 243. More forgiving or shots that wander a bit.

    I vote for the NEF as well. I have one and like it. Plus, if you know you only have one shot one takes their time and places the shot better. Plus, if you DO opt for the 223 and get it in a handi rifle if you want to step up to another caliber 100 bucks is all it takes to get another barrel.

    JMHO!