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Old March 17, 2009, 12:20 AM   #1
wyobohunter
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Better .243 coyote bullet?

I shot a coyote (quartering away) from about 85 yds two days ago. The bullet broke the front shoulder and blew the guts out the other side (ruining the hide). The 85 gr. Sierra Gameking HPBT's are very accurate in my gun but they are too much. I'd like to know if other yote hunters shoot .243 win. and what bullets work well. Thanks
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Old March 17, 2009, 01:45 AM   #2
CW-NH-HUNTER
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My brother has had good luck with the 55 gr sierra blitz kings out of his .243, they have a polymer tip and expand rapidly causing little damage from what i've seen.
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Old March 17, 2009, 01:51 AM   #3
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I use 70gr sierra Blitzking on foxes, goats and pigs. They blow foxes apart but bont exit on pigs or goats. Puts them down though
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Old March 17, 2009, 01:58 AM   #4
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My mate shoots fox with
62 g Varmint Grenade all the damage is on the inside they work well.
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Old March 17, 2009, 06:15 AM   #5
VaFisher
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Quote:
The 85 gr. Sierra Gameking HPBT's
These are great bullets for putting game down like yesterday. They do plenty of damage, why would you want any different unless you want to save a hide.
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Old March 17, 2009, 07:03 AM   #6
taylorce1
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Quote:
My brother has had good luck with the 55 gr sierra blitz kings out of his .243, they have a polymer tip and expand rapidly causing little damage from what i've seen.
I think you just described the 55 grain Nosler Ballistic Tip, I've never seen a Sierra with a polymer tip. These can be pushed to 4000 fps which should make for a better possibility of not getting an exit.
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Old March 17, 2009, 08:36 AM   #7
Daryl
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I shot coyotes for about 25 years with various .243's. I can honestly say that there's nothing you can shoot coyotes with from that cartridge that is "fur friendly". Absolutely nothing.

Some ARE better than others from what I've found. If you handload, don't push the bullets to max velocity. I found that a Nosler b-tip pushed at about 3600 fps isn't too awfully bad at ranges over 150 yards; that is, unless you hit a shoulder. Shattered bone acts as shrapnel, and makes a fair sized hole out the other side.

The 70 grain b-tip was what I prefered, but it still isn't what I'd call fur friendly. I also tried the 55 grain b-tips with decent results as long as I stayed around that 3600 fps range. Pushed faster, I got more fur damage and less accuracy from my rifle.

Honestly, all of my experiments with various rifles, in my attempts to keep fur damage to a minimum, is why I mostly use a .17 Rem for coyotes now. A 25 grain .17 cal match bullet goes in at .17 caliber, and generally doesn't exit. Stay away from the Berger MEF's though.

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Old March 17, 2009, 08:56 AM   #8
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Quote:
I shot coyotes for about 25 years with various .243's. I can honestly say that there's nothing you can shoot coyotes with from that cartridge that is "fur friendly". Absolutely nothing
That's very true. My best bullet is the Hornady 65gr V-Max. Still, on a broad side shot it will blow out the other side. Most often on a length wise shot it won't come out.
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Old March 17, 2009, 09:02 AM   #9
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I'm with Daryl on this one. The only recomendation I can make is to slow your bullets down to moderate velocities. 3500-3600 fps with the 55's, slower yet with heavier bullets. Try to duplicate the .223 and 22-250 velocities with a given bullet weight and you should do better for saving fur.

FYI, my Lee book states that for every 10% reduction in powder you will see and 8% drop in velocity. Be carefull with light loads, they can be as bad for pressure as hot loads.
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Old March 17, 2009, 11:23 AM   #10
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Just offhand, wouldn't a 100-grain bullet loaded down somewhat be workable? Exit wound, yeah, but little expansion with a thicker-jacketed bullet. I'd try using 2400 and doing some testing. I know that 20 grains of 2400 makes a nice plinking load in a .308 with 150-grain jacketed bullets.
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Old March 17, 2009, 11:45 AM   #11
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Heavier bullets designed for large game can definetly reduce pelt damage. I've seen coyotes shot with 140gr. fusions out of a 7mm-08 that had a nickle size entry and a 50 cent exit. Not great but very managable. But Iowa farm ground will have 2-4 houses around each section and I prefer to use frangable bullets and keep em inside the yote. If I was hunting less populated areas I wouldn't be at all afraid to use a heavier BG bullet.
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Old March 17, 2009, 11:50 AM   #12
Daryl
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Art,

Personally, unless a person is a very experienced handloader, I'd stay away from using pistol powder in rifle loads. The case doesn't get filled up very much, sometimes causing inconsistent ignition depending on the position of the powder in the case.

There have been a some rifle's blown up that way, particulary by using Blue Dot in the .223.

I've used a lot of 100 grain bullets in my .243's over the years. They can be more fur friendly, as long as it's a well constructed bullet, but avoid hitting shoulders and such, and don't shoot them at top velocities.

Personally, I got better results from using the b-tips loaded at moderate speeds, and being careful of which shots I took. Not that I didn't get fur damage with them, but much of the time there was enough left to sew up.

Any way you look at it though, the .243 really doesn't have much respect for a coyote's fur. It's even worse on grey foxes and bobcats, which are worth more than the coyotes.

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Old March 17, 2009, 10:23 PM   #13
wyobohunter
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Thanks for all of the advice

Next thing I'll try is a heavier bullet at lower velocity. I only have a 6x scope so I can't really take advantage of 3500+ fps anyhow. I'd call 300yds my personal limit if conditions allow. Next time I shoot a yote I'll post the results. Thanks again.
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Old March 18, 2009, 10:01 AM   #14
Art Eatman
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I've nevrer had problems with 2400. I've used it regularly in '06 since 1950, and in .308, .30-40 Krag and .30-30 in recent years. I've not used other pistol powders. 20 grains is near max in the .30-30, but "mild plinker" in the others. Not the best groups, but adequate.

It's a funny powder. Phil Sharpe lists a load of 2400 in a .22 Savage HiPower for a muzzle velocity with a 40-grain bullet of about 3,900 ft/sec. And a load in corrosive-primed .30-06 with an 80-grain pistol bullet at about 3,900 ft/sec. I haven't tried those at home.

But I digress...
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Old March 18, 2009, 10:56 AM   #15
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Art,

I don't disagree with you that it can be used effectively; I only suggest that those who try it should be more experienced handloaders.

They need to fully understand the differences in powder burn rates, and how high/low pressure can result in a blown up firearm.

I've never seen commercially published data using pistol powders in rifle cartridges for someone to use as a guide to get started, and starting such things from scratch can get sorta dangerous if someone isn't very sure of what they're doing. Most will play with what works, trying to get more accuracy from the load, and that's tricky too, without knowing minimum and maximum loads to achieve acceptable pressures.

There's nothing quite like the anxiety of not knowing what's going to happen when you pull that trigger.

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Old March 18, 2009, 11:00 AM   #16
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I'd say that the varmint grenade would be well worth a try. I'll bet that the innards will be moosh with no exit.
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Old March 18, 2009, 12:44 PM   #17
Daryl
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Quote:
I'd say that the varmint grenade would be well worth a try. I'll bet that the innards will be moosh with no exit.
Be careful betting money on it.

With a head on shot, I agree. On a broadside shot, it'll exit...and leave a large exit hole. There's only about 4" of flesh to stop that bullet on a broadside coyote, and there's just to much weight, even with the lightest bullets available in .243.

That small entrance/no exit is what I get with a 25 grain Berger Match bullet from my .17 Rem at 3800 fps. Even 30 grain bullets in that caliber will tend to exit, so a 55 grain .243 bullet at the same velocity is almost guaranteed.

For a fragile 35-40 grain .22 caliber bullet to not exit a broadside coyote most of the time, it needs to be slowed down to about .22 mag or .22 hornet velocities, depending on the bullet and load. Even lighter bullets in a .223 will exit much of the time at closer distances.

Most coyotes just don't have enough mass on a broadside shot to stop a 55 grain or heavier bullet, even at lower velocities. Higher velocities will make the bullet come apart easier, but the coyote still won't stop the blowout type exit wounds.

Believe me, I wish a good, fur friendly bullet existed for the .243. It's one of my favorite cartridges (I haven't been without a .243 since 1976 when I was 10 years old).

So, a person is better off to plan on an exit, and try to keep it as small as possible. Lighter bullets, if shot at velocities that don't cause fragmentation, have done decent for me. Bigger bullets can do the same thing, but make a bigger mess if large bones are hit (or, that's been my experience).

For a serious fur rifle, I generally recommend a small bore centerfire; preferably a .17 something or other (not a rimfire). About all a person can do with the bigger caliber rifles is ask questions, try some different things, and use what seems to work best; oh, and keep a glove-needle and some fishing line handy for sewing up holes.

It's just he nature of the beast.

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Old March 18, 2009, 12:51 PM   #18
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Quote:
That small entrance/no exit is what I get with a 25 grain Berger Match bullet from my .17 Rem at 3800 fps. Even 30 grain bullets in that caliber will tend to exit, so a 55 grain .243 bullet at the same velocity is almost guaranteed.
Interesting. I can shoot woodchucks with a 40gr 204ruger at 3900fps and get no exit would at distances between roughly 90 and 200 yards. That's with a bullet that is not really designed to shatter. I would have thought that the varmint grenade would be perfect for coyote.

In case your curious, I do get exits both closer and farther than those distances. I suppose it's because there is just to much energy at close range (it is explosive) and not enough energy at long range (lacking expansion).
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Old March 18, 2009, 11:40 PM   #19
wyobohunter
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As some have said. I doubt if I'll ever find a truly "fur friendly" bullet/powder combo for my .243 win. I'm not out to turn a profit in yote fur so I'm just after a "more fur friendly" bullet/powder combo. I'm not against an exit hole as I'll probably just hang the fur on my garage wall and display the skull next to it.

When it comes to using pistol powders... I'm not educated enough on burn rates etc. to feel comfortable using pistol powders in a rifle cartridge. I stick to published data... My 30-06 and the lighter bullets for my .338 RUM like H4350, the .243 win. I shoot is very accurate with the 85 gr. Sierra Gameking HPBT and H4350, so I'll try other bullets with the same powder and hope I get the same sort of accuracy with fewer explodin' yotes.
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Old March 19, 2009, 07:14 AM   #20
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Most of today's reloading handbooks seem to focus on high performance. Few of today's riflemen do reduced handloads, so little data is available.

If you ever check out bookstores of used books, or maybe some libraries, keep an eye out for the collector's book by Phil Sharpe, "Complete Guide to Handloading". My edition is from 1951, so many modern cartridges must be inferred by case capzcity. But many reduced loads are shown therein.

No idea if it's ever on eBay. Knowing what I do about the book, the total package of information would justify paying a hundred bucks for a copy.
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Old March 19, 2009, 08:21 AM   #21
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I have used the speer 75 gr hollow points and had really good luck on yote and foxes, they work great on prarie dogs too.
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Old March 19, 2009, 11:20 AM   #22
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Whatever happened to using fiber filler for a reduced load to keep the powder in place ?

My Speer manual has reduced loads for most everything. 243 down in the 1700-1800 range.

I suppose you could put one of those in the chamber and if you get a 300 yard shot shuck it out right quick.
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Old March 19, 2009, 08:16 PM   #23
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Try the Sierra 85 grain spitzer or the Hornady 87 grain spirepoint over 37.0 of IMR 4895 or 39.0 of IMR 4320. Guaranteed kill with better pelt value. CB.
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Old March 19, 2009, 09:00 PM   #24
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Years ago we used to take a 7mm nosler partition and make a flat nosed wad cutter out of the aft portion of the bullet, taking every thing north of the partition off. we then went to a wad cutter leaving .15 in front of the partition, this worked great. Later when I got my new 22-250 700 ADL tuned up, and found out that was as good a shooter as anything I owned, I started using crossed sticks and head shots. For a rifle that was less than $300 dollars out the door, its amazing to see easy head shots at 300+ yards.
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Old March 20, 2009, 10:54 AM   #25
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hornady vmax 65gr with imr 4895 or varget is what works the best for me in my .243 for yotes and other vermin.
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