1/10 twist for 243 and bullet weight for deer?Posted by Navistar82 on April 14, 2016 at 12:16 pm
I'm in the market for a 243 rifle for deer and really want to try a Tikka from all the good I've read about them. My only concern is the twist rate and from what I've read it will be good up to 90-95 grain. I live in indiana so I've always used deer slugs or a muzzleloader, so I'm used to large projecticles for hunting. My question is a 90-95 grain bullet big enough to ethically take a deer with 200 yards being the farthest shot?
PS, Indiana legalized .243's and anything in a .30 with a case length longer than 1.16″ until 2020 on private property only for a trial.
MemberApril 14, 2016 at 2:59 pm21 Bullseyes
The 1:10 .243 will stabilize several styles of 100 grain bullets. The flat base bullets generally stabilize better for a given weight than boat tails. 200 yds is “close” range for a .243 so even a marginally stabilized bullet will be fine. As I understand it, a slightly under-stabilized bullet can still shoot accurately. The issue becomes one of an under-stabilized bullet demonstrating lower than published drag coefficients.
To answer your question, there are many suitable deer bullets available for the .243 under 95 grains. If you go with a no lead bullet like a Barnes, you will likely want to go with even lower weights since stabilization is more related to bullet dimensions than weight. In a .243 Over expansion will probably be your biggest concern with bullet selection. Nosler partition, Hornady interlock, sierra gameking, nosler accubond might all fill the bill. I would also try the 80 gr TTSX Barnes for your ranges (at long ranges/lower velocities the Barnes' expansion can become unreliable).
As a rule of thumb, at around 100 grains go with flat based bonded bullets, below 90 grains boat tail bonded should shoot fine. In factory ammunition most of the bullets below 80 grains are meant for varmints and will cause excessive meat damage.
You have picked a great rifle and caliber for deer hunting and good luck!
MemberApril 14, 2016 at 3:16 pm105 Bullseyes
Check this out from my Nosler forum…
MemberApril 14, 2016 at 4:04 pm1 Bullseye
Ok, thanks guys, I'll look into those bullets. Ive got a friend who will be reloading for me (and himself in 243) so we'll play with loads but I wanted to get an idea of bullet weight before I started.
Thanks for the link also.
MemberApril 14, 2016 at 4:54 pm105 Bullseyes
The one thing you need to think about is the velocity at close range with the 243….you will be better with bullet construction like the BT or ET bullet if you pick Nosler for 50-200yrd bush hunting.
If you are mostly seeing and shooting Deer or ElK size animals at 200-400yrds I would lean toward the Accubond or Partition.
I went through the same thing when I was picking a hunting bullet for my 300wsm…I ended up going with the Accubond because most of my shots are 200yrds and out in clearings or bog areas and its proven to be a great performing bullet in the 200-500yrd range for me. BUT when I'm pushing / dogging deer in thick bush I'm loaded with Barnes TTSX bullets (similar to BT & ET)…it is devastating at high velocity in the 50-200yrd range and opens nicely, with no tracking…they drop.
MemberApril 15, 2016 at 10:56 am1 Bullseye
You hit the nail on the head, majority of shots will be in the 50-200 range, some close as 30 yards depending on circumstance. The link you provided was very informative too, I liked being able to see what they.
MemberApril 15, 2016 at 8:47 pm1 Bullseye
Navistar you are going to be very happy with the Tikka .243. I am reloading with Hornady 95 grain SST and getting 1/2″ groups at 100 yds so no problem with stabilizing them. I have also reloaded with the Sierra Gameking 85 grain BTHP and the Nosler 100 grain partition with sub 1″ groups so far for those as well.
MemberMay 10, 2016 at 4:37 am1 Bullseye
I have taken a fair number of mule deer up to 400 yd with the 80 gr TTSX without issues
MemberMay 10, 2016 at 1:32 pm1 Bullseye
100gr is on the heavy side of what will stabilize in your 1/10″. That said, it should really sing in the 90gr area.
MemberMay 10, 2016 at 5:16 pm1 Bullseye
My Tikka Lite .243 will not shoot the 100 gr bullets accurately, but its a laser with the Sierra 85 gr HPBT.
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