View Full Version : Rifle for my Daughter to hunt

January 26, 2006, 10:28 AM
I am a long time bowhunter and short time rifle hunter for whitetail.
My daughter is 17 and wants to whitetail hunt this fall. Oh the happiness!
On my lease it is required to be elevated to use a rifle.
I put up a double ladder stand already in anticipation.
I am going to purchase a rifle for her, but here is the question.
The youth .243 is light weight. Would a heavier, maybe bull barrel, be a better choice since she is pencil thin and would be seated for the hunt?
We will spend many days at the firing range this summer but the recoil is my biggest concern. If it hurts her she will lose interest in shooting.
Any suggestions for caliber and heavier vs lighter barrel information would be appreciated.

January 26, 2006, 10:37 AM
I think I'd step up to a slightly heavier velocity, bullet and gun.

Just thinking out loud.....

25'06 is a flat shooting, low recoil round
300 savage is a comfortable round
257 Roberts is low recoil

There are better alternatives to the 243 when going after deer; but the 243 will do the job when the shooter uses good placement and premium bullets.

I'd go with the 6mm or 25'06 in your shoes and in a varmint barrelled heavy rifle with a good quality scope and aftermarket recoil pad. I think Savage offers an entry level priced rifle that will provide all that for a fair price (I'd opt not to purchase a scope package with savage and spend all I could afford for top glass.)

<EDIT> Have your daughter practice with both in-the-ear plugs and muffs. Recoil often get mingled with muzzle blast in the mind. Also have her practice with a 22lr. A 22lr is the best training tool in the world!!! I'd have her shoot at least a box of 100 22LR for every box (20) of centerfire cartridges.

Wild Bill Bucks
January 26, 2006, 10:52 AM
My daughter weighs in at about 120 and she has no trouble with th 7mm-08
I reload her shells with a 130 grain bullet and she has no trouble with the gun at all.
It is inheirntly accurate cartridge because it comes from the .308 brass, and the 7mm has a great Ballistic coefficient. Caliber has mild recoil and flys at a rate of about 3000 fps.
Bullets range in weights suitable for everything from ground hogs to moose and is an excellent long range OR short range weapon according to the ammo you choose.
Some people think it is probably the best all around hunting rifle around.
Savage makes an affordable rifle in this caliber, I think I gave about $250.00 for hers used.
Check the pawn shops before buying new as most people probably don't shoot more that 50 times with a rifle before they trade them off, and your chances of finding a good one are pretty good.

Just my $0.02 worth.

January 26, 2006, 11:12 AM
I've changed my mind....(my perogative right?)

Since this may well be a "flash in the pan" desire, I'd have her use your rifle with a good recoil pad and perhaps a mercury recoil suppressor or two inserted into the stock of your gun (I assume you still have your rifle from your earlier rifle hunting days.)

This all assumes you shoot a non-mag 300 cal. bullet or less.

If she falls in love with hunting (and field dressing..ect) then get her the rifle of her choice (have her do the research). That's half the fun, right?

January 26, 2006, 12:35 PM
Lotsa' folks have been successful with a .243 and it IS user friendly.

And it IS enough gun.:)

January 26, 2006, 04:41 PM
Ok. Having taken in all the response so far, it seems that everyone has there favorite choice.
She cannot use my rifle, winchester 270 wsm. Even with a sims recoil pad it kicks like a mule.
I am new into rifle hunting. I have no experience and nothing to draw on from earlier life. I rifle hunted this year for the second year.
I am glad to say that after many years of bow hunting successfully, rifle hunting has opened up alot of doors for hunting opportunities for me.

The .243 is what every rifle salesman wants to sell but, the 25-06 sounds good too. Tell me about a boss system. I think that is what he called it. (holes drilled in the end of the barrell to release gas and take away some of the recoil)

A heavy barreled 25-06 with this system may be the answer. Yes, she and I will shoot another 500 rounds this summer together thru the 22 long. I put a little scope on it this year so she can get used to looking thru it.

Yes, whatever rifle I decide on for her, I will put a nice Leupold scope on it.

No, the 22 long doesn't have a Leupold on it. Tasco for that choice.

My first gun hunt was with a borrowed 30-30. Shot a buck first thing, first morning at 25 yards. Double lung, and spent 5 minutes looking for what I assume was the arrow before realizing what I was doing.

Bow hunters usually make crappy rifle hunters for this reason. We don't shoot the shoulder, and we set up for 20 yard shots. I am learning as I go.

She has been with me 3 times when I field dressed a deer. She helps butcher the deer every fall for the last 3 years. She has seen plenty of dead deer between me and everyone at the bow shop where I worked on saturdays.
Thanks for the good information and the good info to come.

January 26, 2006, 04:51 PM
A BOSS, or any other well-made muzzlebrake, will lower felt recoil in varying degrees. This comes at the price of a great deal of noise being directed back at the shooter, and even more so at whoever is sitting by the shooter.
She cannot use my rifle, winchester 270 wsm. Even with a sims recoil pad it kicks like a mule.
How much experience does she have with it?

January 26, 2006, 04:57 PM
she shot my 270 WSM 3 shots at a shooters table, with sand bags not a rifle sled, and she will not shoot it again. Yes, I made sure she held it tight to her shoulder and yes she had proper shooting form and yes she hates it.
It does kick.
Of course, she was wearing hearing protection. Foam plugs and muffs. I work around noise so I am aware of the safety factor. Shooters glasses too.

January 26, 2006, 05:12 PM
The .243 will kill deer just fine. It is very accurate, with very low recoil. Be advised that it is less tolerant of shooting error than the other, more powerful rounds are. In other words, deer which are gut-shot with a .243 will often run a looong way before they die. She just needs to pick her shots well, and have more patience than I have (I learned several lessons this Season about patience ;)).

If she is a thin and an inexperienced shooter, go ahead and buy the .243 for her. Most standard size .243s are pretty small and light, so I see no reason for a youth size (I presume this means shortened stock) model, unless she is really petite. Try a Remington CDL; it is a slender rifle, and it comes with a great recoil pad. Load with a 95 or 100 grain soft-point round.

The advantage of the .25-05 and the .7mm-08 is that these calibers shoot a heavier round (117 grn for .25-06, 130 grn for the 7mm, IIRC). But a heavier round means a little more recoil. Not much more recoil, but if she is a really recoil sensitive beginner, I'd rather have her shoot the .243 accurately.

Avoid the BOSS and other porting systems. The increased noise may cause her to flinch even more than the recoil. And the recoil from a .243 is so gentle that she won't need a recoil reducer or a huge, thick barrel.

January 26, 2006, 05:21 PM
There is nothing wrong with the 243, alot of deer have been taking with this round. Of all the calibers mentioned the 243 is the mildest in recoil. As for the rifle I would look into a New England firearms Handi rifles. These little single shot rifles are inexpensive and in time if she wants to go up in caliber you could get another barrel. This company makes heavy bull barrel rifles as well as ultra lite rifles. I would not over look the Ultra light 243, ease of carry and handling and in 243 no recoil. I liked the NEF ultra lite 243, hunted with one the last two seasons and cannot complain (it put deer in the freezer). Just my two cents worth.

January 26, 2006, 05:22 PM
The BOSS; or any muzzle porting, should be avoided IMO. The damage to ears is cumulative; whereas recoil rarely causes permenant damage (elephant guns can detact cornias, but that's with nearly 10 time the amount of recoil.)

A heavy 25'06 with a 40mm objective scope is a great combo. Good glass makes all the difference at sunrise and sunset.

There are recoil pads that actually fit around ones shoulder too (independant of the rifle.)

Best of luck.

john in jax
January 26, 2006, 05:39 PM
.243, 7mm-08, 25-06, are all good choices. Do you know anyone that might let you borrow one of the calibers in question for her to test shoot?

January 26, 2006, 05:51 PM
Why not just get her a .30-30? Low recoil, accurate, cheap, (including the gun) and it allows for faster follow up shots. Obviously I am talking about a lever gun. A good marlin 336 is around $300 bucks brand new. And get a Marlin over a Winchester because the Winchester is a pain in the ass to mount a scope on.
Otherwise I would get a .25-06 over a .243 because there is more power, same minimal recoil, and more range.
At Gander Mountain I saw this nifty little Remington Model 7 in .260 for 4 bills brand new, I would have bought it but the rifle was a little too small for me. (I am 6'4" and 270 lbs.)
My brother just purchased a nice little Remington 7400 in .243 and the recoil on it is not much more than that of my Bushmaster AR-15 and it shoots great and is another inexpensive rifle. He bought his for $400.

January 26, 2006, 05:53 PM
Also IMO the bull barrel would get a little tiresome for a little girl to lug around all day and is not necessary.

January 26, 2006, 06:00 PM
Go with the .243 if your daughter doesn't like it YOU will!;)

January 26, 2006, 09:02 PM
Also IMO the bull barrel would get a little tiresome for a little girl to lug around all day and is not necessary.
+1. Even if you are just sitting all day, a heavy gun is a heavy gun. And I don't think she is going to need the reduced recoil that much. I know a 13 year old girl who can't weigh more than 100 lb and shoots a 7mm-08 just fine. As a matter of fact, her buck last year was a lot bigger than mine.

January 26, 2006, 09:49 PM
I'd run with .357 mag or .243 for that. Medium weight rifle (up to 8.5 lbs decked out). If she's recoil-sensitive and y'all will be practicing a lot, I'd really look into something like .357 mag - which works great if the ranges are short-ish where you hunt. 3rd choice... .30-30 win.

January 26, 2006, 10:00 PM
I second both the .30-30 and the .357. If ranges are short, 50-75 yards long, with 100 being way out there, there really isn't much reason to go to a true 'high power' rifle round. The .357, .44 Mag and .45 LC in a carbine format have plenty of reach out and knock deer down power inside 75 yards. A .30-30 with a good shooter behind it will do the same out to much, much longer ranges. You might also look at the venerable .45-70. I know some people are flinching already, but the green box remington loads with the 405 gr SP remind me a lot of heavy upland loads in a 12 guage. You know something went off, but they're more of a push rather than the slap of say the .300 WSM.

The best advice? Go to a range with a good selection of rental guns, have her shoot several in the calibers recommended in this thread. Have her shoot several different types of rifles in the same caliber at the least. It can be surprising how much stock design can mitigate felt recoil. I hate pistol grip stocks on lever guns, but give me a straight stock and I'll shoot calibers I wouldn't think of before. I haven't met a factory monte carlo stock that I like either.

A Browning or Benelli autoloader in any round really -CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED--CENSORED- cats out felt recoil.

January 26, 2006, 10:09 PM
ya know, another thought... a browning BAR or rem 7400 semi-auto in .243 is going to kick even less.

January 27, 2006, 12:55 AM
Thanks for all the input. I never thought to let her try the 30-30. I bought that borrowed 30-30 from my first rifle kill and she can try it. I never thought about it kicking less. I could mount a scope for her easy enough if she can fire it ok.
I use it with 180gr. silver tips for hog hunting in the brush. I can down size the load for her to deer hunt. Any suggestions for a round in the 30-30?

I will probably still buy her "her own rifle". I am going to investigate where a rental firearm range is around here and we can make a weekend of it.
I never imagined such a thing existed.

I am ruling out the boss system. Thanks for the advice.

I will probably go with the .243 so I can take her coyote calling after she is up to snuff on her accuracy. 85gr. nosler part. if I am remembering correctly, for coyotes. 110gr. nosler or hornady for deer?

Browning is the choice most recommended. Like you said, if she doesn't like it, I will.

Thanks to all for the advice. This forum is priceless.

Art Eatman
January 27, 2006, 01:31 AM
I've killed some 20+ deer with the Sierra 85-grain HPBT in .243. However, I pretty much limited myself to neck shots or cross-body shots. No angle shots where deep penetration was necessary. I also limited myself to no more than some 200 yards. Most shot, natch, were within the usual 100 yards, mas o menos. That particular bullet creates mush inside the body cavity, which makes it very good for heart/lung shots.

Federal sells that particular loading, and I've found it to group as tightly as my handloads.


January 27, 2006, 08:58 AM
I use a Barnes 100 gr in 25-06. I believe that a 25 caliber is slightly small for the game cartridge. I do hunt rather large bodied whitetails with it. I believe that a 243 is also on the small side for deer. I would use it with out any reservations, provided you use a premium bullet. It is very hard for anyone to say that a Nosler Partition is an inferior bullet. You do need to check the accuracy of that load in her rifle. If it is not acceptable try another load.

January 27, 2006, 09:59 AM

Put a little research into the bullets available for whichever cartridge you select. These smaller bullets that are often going very fast have a tendency to "explode" if you hit a rib. I really like ballistic tips; and I might still elect to use them in this senario, but I'd ask around and get some suggestions from those who have hunted with your intended caliber. The ballistic tips are absolutly devistating between 270 and 30'06 class, but I don't always get an exit wound when shooting a heart/lung shot (I'm now an afficinado of the neck shot). I've had ribs push the tip in and the entire insides look like they went through a blender. You might elect to go with a bonded bullet with more controlled expansion.... Just something to chew on than many hunters don't put a whole lot of thought into.

One more thought....Lot's of people are steering you toward a light weight gun. That's fine, but I personally find that in addition to lowering perceived recoil; they also steady the gun when the heart is pounding. My 280 varmint barrel and target stock (with a fairly heavy scope) really puts the kabosh on the shakes. I loaned it out to my brother inlaw and used my 30/30 last hunt. It took me considerable longer to calm down for the shot. The reticle was doing a figure "8" across the entire body of the deer at about 150 yards.

Other considerations.... There is no need to crank up the power of the scope at hunting time. I almost always have mine at 4X (sighting it in is the only time I have it at 16X.) You will get more light coming through the scope at lower power. I highly recommend a trigger job. Many rifles can be adjusted by the user. I like 2lbs, but 3lbs is a good starting point.

January 27, 2006, 10:03 AM
A similar thread is running on The High Road. http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=179163

While most people think the .243 is adequate, since its introduction a number of cartridges have been introduced or "rediscovered" that provide more potential, including the .260, 7mm-08, 6.5x55 and .257 Roberts. If you load your own you easily can tailor loads that approximate the recoil of the .243 while preserving the ability to upgrade without acquiring another rifle.

Recoil also is a function of gun fit, recoil pad and maybe even a shoulder recoil shield. A .30-30 with a hard plate may feel worse than a well fitting .260 with a Decelerator pad or Limbsaver and a shoulder worn PAST recoil shield.

Before you run out and buy a Browning, I think you should take her shopping and see what fits her well.

January 27, 2006, 07:46 PM
stalk fit? Yep, yet another equation I left out.
I was talking at work today and one of my supervisors is going to let me borrow a .308 of his to see if she likes it. He says he will load some rounds for her and she will be right at home with the recoil.

I am looking into a recoil padded shooting jacket for her. If the .308 works for her, we will buy the twin to it.

He also said if I wanted to, he would introduce me to the fine art of loading my own rounds.
Sounds like I am jumping into this with both feet. Wish me luck.

I will surely be back for more information.

January 27, 2006, 07:47 PM
I know this is going to bring down some flames but I'll go ahead and say it. :eek:

I got back into deer hunting 7-8 years ago and have made it a point to look for the perfect deer rifle. I used a 270 then went through a Marlin phase then found a lightweight Savage .243. I thought the .243 was perfect until I got my 6.5 Grendel Hunter. The Grendel is the perfect deer rifle/cartridge combination.

Back on topic:
Little Meek likes the .243. He probably outweighs your daughter by a hundred pounds and stands maybe a foot taller but he doesn't consider the gun nor cartridge to be 'too small'. :D If you worry about recoil, one old trick is to have the kid practice with the 85 grain then the parent checks and adjusts the sight-in with 100 grain (very minimal difference at 100 yards and probably won't need changing). Kid will be too excited to notice the recoil difference in the 1 or 2 shots they take while hunting.

January 28, 2006, 04:31 PM
If scared about recoil go with a .223 .25-06 .204 smaller the better .220 swift all of these are great guns with low recoil heck my .243 hardley kicks at all anways it should be fine:D :D :D

January 28, 2006, 04:42 PM
let the flaming begin

January 28, 2006, 05:04 PM
If scared about recoil go with a .223 .25-06 .204 smaller the better .220 swift all of these are great guns with low recoil
.223, .25-06, .220 Swift, OK, but .204 Ruger for deer? :eek: :eek: :eek:

Seriously, even the .223 is highly debatable, but I don't know if I'd use a .204 on coyotes. That's only a 40 grain bullet, max.

January 28, 2006, 05:37 PM
A recoil jacket may increase the length of pull too much for her.

No flaming here. You can use all the woodchuck rounds you want:D

January 28, 2006, 05:54 PM
Call me Crazy but my friends grandma.. A very small framed woman shoots a few deer every year with a 22-250, I've never shot one but she says it hardlly kicks at all. Something else I have noticed is for some reason Browning's seem to kick less in the same Caliber, I can not explain it or maybe it's mental but my dads Brownings Stainless Stalker .270 kicks less then my brothers Remington 700 .270 and my Ruger .280.

Wild Bill Bucks
January 29, 2006, 10:52 AM
I agree with Tycross, 223 and 204 are really not good calibers for Deer.
Even though a .204 and a .243 are almost Identical in trajectory out to 300 yards. The.204 is still sizzling at 300 yards but is loseing energy, and has about 200 ft lbs. less than the .243 at that range (525ft lbs. VS 735 ft lbs.)

A.223 and .204 are both extremly good coyote guns, but I would not use either of them on deer sized game.
The last thing you want a youngster to do is get the idea they can loose animals they have shot because of to small a caliber. Go with the .243 and practice, practice, practice, so they can get a good neck shot or well placed heart shot. Stay away from calibers to small for the game they are hunting as it is very depressing to a hunter (especially younger ones) to sit all day waiting on that one good shot, and not be able to take it home and brag a little.

Going home with the game is as important to a younger person as the actual hunting is.

January 29, 2006, 11:08 AM
and has about 200 ft lbs. less than the .243 at that range (525ft lbs. VS 735 ft lbs.)
There's a little more disparity than that. .243, in a heavier (95-100 grain) bullet has about 1200 ft/lbs at 300 yards, while the .204 40 grainers have around 675 ft/lb, and then drops to 512 ft/lb in a 32 grain bullet. At least in the Hornady loads.

.243 energy does drop down to the 700-800 ft/lb levels, but only in the 55-60 grain varmint loads.

January 29, 2006, 11:16 AM

I am in the same boat as you in regards to a daughter wanting to get started in hunting/shooting. My little girl is very slight build as well. Here is what my research came up with.

There are several companies that sell youth rifles in short action cartridges that work well for deer hunting. The one I chose was a Weatherby youth in .243. The youth model comes with 2 stocks (child size and adult) as well as a proof target (mine showed 3-shot 100 yard accuracy of 3/4"). I looked at the Savage youth and Remington youth models as well. Both were fine firearms with great accuracy, however neither offered the additional stock.

As for the .243 performance on deer, one thing most folks appear to be overlooking is the size of the deer you are hunting in OK. Being a Florida transplant (thanks to the USAF) with hunting experience in a few states, OK deer are very much the same size as our Florida deer, which is to say small. We are not talking about large bodied whitetails or mulies in the northern states where I would agree .243 may be a little light. I hunted for many years with folks who hunted not only Florida deer but wild hogs as well, and every shot placed into the vitals with 85 grain bullets or larger always resulted in a quick kill. Also, availability of .243 ammo may be better than some other cartridges (like .257 Roberts, 7mm08, 25-06) due to its prolific nature assuming you are not living next to a large sporting goods store that carries ammo for every caliber in the book.

.243 recoil is light and it sounds like it would match her build. I personally shoot a .308 and would not put my daughter behind it. It kicks just a little too much with 150 gr hunting rounds for her size.

All the calibers mentioned will put deer down, no question. The lighter calibers (.223, etc) requires more skill that your daughter probably has not developed yet in order to get correct shot placement.

Good luck with your search.

Wild Bill Bucks
January 29, 2006, 12:18 PM
Your right Ty,

Got on the wrong line when I looked them up. Probably need to get my head out of my A-- before posting.
Sorry about the wrong info.

January 29, 2006, 01:21 PM
My 80 lb., 9 year old, grand daughter shoots my fathers Rem 600 in 243 with no problem. It's a small rifle with an 18 1/2 inch barrel and is pretty loud with that short barrel. By the time you put a scope on it and add a pound in weight it puts it at 7 1/4 pounds. I don't think she would do well with a heavier rifle just hefting it around.

Use muffs while practicing and she won't have any problem. Your daughter may be stronger and handle more weight okay but you have to judge that.

If you go with the 243 stick to bullets around 100 grains. Sighted at 150 yards you can shoot out to 175 - 200 yards without any allowance, but I'd recommend setting up for a 125 - 150 yard shot max. if possible for a first timer.

If you go with the 30/30 scoped the recoil will be about the same and again try to keep shots under 150 yards.

Make sure she snuggles the gun in nice and tight so the recoil doesn't get a running start at her.

Marksmanship is the key so the NEF single shot will do the job on the deer. If you put the first one where it should be you won't need the quick follow up shot. The NEF will probably be a pound or so lighter so there will be a little more recoil.

Jack O'Conner
January 29, 2006, 03:28 PM


This little jewel is a Glenfield 30GT in 30-30 and has put a lot of meat on our table. Recoil is easy to take especially with the thick Pachmeyer pad. Barrel is only 18.5 inches long for easy carrying all day even in rough country.

30-30 is a keeper!

January 29, 2006, 10:33 PM
Ok the practice shoot is set up. I borrowed the .243 and .308. I have time to go find ammo. My questions are these now:

.308 120 gr.?
.243 100 gr.?
30-30 140 gr.?
and what type of rounds. Ballistic or partician?
Is there any way to down-size my .270 WSM rounds for her use, or is that rediculous? Thanks for the help.

January 29, 2006, 11:45 PM
150 grain for the .308; 95 or 100 grain .243. I can't tell you about the .30-30.

This is only a 'practice shoot' to see how she handles the recoil. So save yourself some money and buy one box of Remington Core-Lokt soft-points for each caliber. It is inexpensive, and usually shoots fairly well through most guns. And when it goes through a deer, the Core-Lokt will perform just as well as the more expensive rounds that you're talking about. You can try out different brands and loads of ammo after she has picked the caliber.

Notice how I said, "after SHE has picked the caliber." :) Don't let anyone pressure her to pick one round over the other. If she says she is most comfortable with the .243, then that should be the choice.

Better to have an accurate shot with a .243 than a flinch from a 308.

January 30, 2006, 03:34 AM
This is only a 'practice shoot' to see how she handles the recoil. So save yourself some money and buy one box of Remington Core-Lokt soft-points for each caliber.
+1. Unless you are sighting in, just buy the cheapest stuff you can find. I don't think .270 WSM is in the Core-Lokt line, but I could be wrong, and if it's not, Winchester Powerpoints should be equally cheap.
Is there any way to down-size my .270 WSM rounds for her use, or is that rediculous?
That's a good idea, but with the limited availablity of ammunition for the WSM calibers, I don't know of any reduced loads unless you roll your own. Remington has a reduced recoil line, which you might look at for the .308, though.

January 30, 2006, 05:28 AM
30-30 150 gr will be fine. Keep the sessions short, it is better to go back than to over do it and develope flinches and a general dislike of high power rifle shooting. IMO recoil and muzzle blast are unpleasant sensations that become more and more fun as a shooter gets used to it and sees results. Best of luck with her, I think you are going about it the right way. Keep it fun.

January 30, 2006, 07:45 AM
I bought my son a 243 Model 7 Remington. He loves it and has never had one move out of its tracks. We shoot right behind the shoulder about a third of the way up the rib cage and boy it does a job inside the rib cage. MUSH:) The young Lady will like the weight and with a limb saver recoil pad, she won't notice the recoil.:D

Gary Conner
January 30, 2006, 02:43 PM
Ain't it a wonderful thing that first, he is teaching his daughter how to hunt, and doing it darned seriously?

And secondly, ain't it great she not only hunts, but also gets involved in field dressing and quartering out her own game meat?

February 4, 2006, 07:10 PM
ok, the practice shoot went..... not as planned. She was having trouble learning how to shoot with a scope and how to see and not flinch.

practice abandoned for a day.

Went to Wal-Mart and bought a remmington 587 in .22. (mossyoak camo)
a cheap scope and a box of rounds.

Practice session number two. 70 shots later she is putting rounds in a 5 inch circle at 100 yards with the .22. (I purchased a black stick on target that turns green where the round penetrates it.)

She shoots 5 times and runs down the range to see the target holes. Ok so now I can't smack the grin off of her face.

Move to the 30-30 marlin (it is the only rifle that fits her comfortably)

9 shots later, she is sighted in to a half dollar circle on the target at 50 yards. She likes it but I figured this is enough for the day.

The Marlin is a lever action 30-30 with a Nikon Prostaff 3-9 X 40 scope. She has adopted it. Tomorrow after church, round 2.

After much ado about the other rifles, she landed on the 30-30. I thank every one of you for your input. Wish us luck this fall on her first deer.

February 5, 2006, 12:08 PM
DF, let us know how the hunt turns out! Thank you for bringing another Hunter to the fold.

February 5, 2006, 12:18 PM
.243 is plenty for whitetail deer.

February 5, 2006, 01:34 PM
Real glad she is taking to it, 30-30 will do what she wants and if she gets real keen get her a 6.5x55, low recoil, more than enough killing power and doesnt have the sharp crack of the 243/25-06. It will kill anything except brown bear ( you really need more energy on those) for her. But if she is happy and shooting well that is perfect.:D
My daughter learnt on my 222 centerfire and when she goes with me she grabs the 6.5x55 and leaves me the 270! which I like anyway luckily.

February 17, 2006, 03:45 AM
My Daughter Started Hunting At 12.i Got Her A Winchester Model 70 Mini Carbine In .243.beautiful Little Gun Bought It Off A Friend.
Stay With Something With A Short Action More Compact Rifle.that Way She Won,t Have The Burden Of Lugging Around A Large Gun.she Will Love You For It.i Am Also Looking For Another .243 For My Second Daughter Who Will Be 12 This Year.good Luck And Happy Hunting.

The Bark Is Worse Than The Bite!!!!!!!!!!

February 17, 2006, 04:35 AM
A big plus 1 for the Foxman.

If you want what I would consider a relatively low cost but highly effective rifle for a beginning shooter for deer, you would be hard pressed to beat a good Swedish Mauser in 6.5x55. Excellent, accurate round with little recoil. Replace the rear sight assembly with a B-Square mount (no smithing) and install a 4x IER scope, and you have the best of both worlds: a precision grade rifle with a reflex-type sight setup that will allow precise bullet placement out to about 150 yards. Add to that, that you can usually find a good Swedish Mauser for around 300 or so, and you're set.

February 17, 2006, 01:29 PM
Oh its very interesting. Could you provide me more information ?

[email protected]

[email protected]

February 17, 2006, 02:38 PM
.243 Man! Not a youth model either. AT 17 and a thin 120 lbs the reach bound to be about right for a full size weapon.
I say the .243 for only one reason. All of the others, 25-06, 220 swift,6.5 x 55 and so on, though admirable unless yu load your own might prove to be a little hard to get where as the 243 will definately do the job and just about anyplace that sells ammo will have 243ammo.
What ever it takes, keep that gal hunting.

February 17, 2006, 03:08 PM
Don't have a caliber to recommend, but a hunting buddy used a .243 for several years and he liked it a lot, except for one thing. He was a great marksman, and too many of the white tail deer he shot ran kinda far before dropping, even though he put the bullet thru their hearts. We hunted in fairly heavily woods areas and finding a deer that had run after being shot was a problem. He switched to a 308 to solve the problem.

March 1, 2006, 09:23 AM
I have a 243 in the handi rifle youth model i picked up at a pawn shop for my kids.I have a hard time picking up my other rifles when a go huntin!! If i drop it or loose it i maybe out a couple hundred bucks scope and all!! Kids also learn to make better shots win they only have one. I hunt meat not paper the freezer is almost full!!!!!!!!!!

March 2, 2006, 10:54 PM
I thought the .243 was perfect until I got my 6.5 Grendel Hunter. The Grendel is the perfect deer rifle/cartridge combination.

Ya know, Meek, I can definitely see myself gettin' down with that logic, once I get a 6.5 grendel upper from Alexander. Right now, for deer hunting, I have a .270 turnbolt (Savage), a .308 semi (Armalite), a .243 single shot (NEF), a .45-70 lever (Marlin), and a .25-06 turnbolt (Howa), and in all honesty, a *couple* others. :o Since it's so hard to decide which to grab when hunting, maybe the grendel will help eliminate the anxiety in the choice by making it easy! (ya, THAT's the reason I need another gun). :) :rolleyes:

March 3, 2006, 09:19 AM
The .243 will do a great job if you put the bullet in the right place and is you use a fairly quick expanding bullet. Try the NBT 95 gr, Rem accutip 95gr, or the winchester supreme with the 95 gr ballistic tip. The Hornady SST should do well too.

All deer can run quite a distance after being hit. Some collapse almost instantly with a lung/ heart shot, others can run 100 yards.

The .243 turns their lungs to slimy goo with a quick expanding bullet. Some even use 85 gr hollowpoints with great success.

March 5, 2006, 12:42 PM
Been gone to read there are a couple of reasons I said the .223, .204,
1. Teaches the Imprtance of being a good shot if a child is scared of a firearm they will flench and wound an anmial and that is not good.
2.Teaches them shot placement this is how my dad did it, I hunted with a .223 single shot and he had his ole' 6m if I missed he would clean up and yes he was good enough to do so.
This is how I will teach my childern to do you do it your own way but it worked with me.:D :D :D