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Old March 4, 1999, 10:01 PM   #26
Byron Quick
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Perhaps saying that many people feel that .300 Winchester Magnum is too powerful for whitetail would have been more precise than "overkill."
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Old March 12, 1999, 10:16 AM   #27
Keith Rogan
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You leave out the most important element of these failures with a .243, namely, what type of bullet/load was used?
I've killed dozens of deer with a .243 and never experienced a problem. I used Federal Premiums with 100 grain Nosler Partitions or handloaded 70 grain Barnes X's. The standard hunting rounds will often fail miserably, but that problem is not limited to .243 caliber.
If you want good results (in any caliber) buy good bullets.

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Old March 24, 1999, 02:11 AM   #28
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In the early 1970s a young Army troop in Germany and I became pretty good friends. He did not re-up. He came back to the States and fell on very, very hard times.
When I met him again in the late 1980s, he was taking care of a ranch for an elderly widow lady in return for (really sub-standard) housing.
In the course of our visit, he showed me his rifle - a rather beat-up .22 magnum with a low-power scope (I forget exactly what power). He asked what a box of shells cost - I didn't know. He said he only had (I believe he said) eight shells left out of a box of 50. He then floored me by telling me the 42(more or less) shells used had accounted for practice, sighting in the scope, and thirty (30!) deer.
Yep, he was a poacher. But he used everything on each deer, now I mean everything! The meat they ate or bartered for food they couldn't grow in their garden. The hides they tanned and sold to folks who said they were going to make buckskin garments or whatever. He even sold the HOOVES to craftsmen to make hat/coat racks. The antlers he sold to yuppies so they could mount them and tell great (but totally fictitious) hunting tales. Nothing went to waste.
Illegal? Sure! Immoral? Well, he fed his family the only way he knew how.

My point is, if he could take thirty deer with a .22 magnum, with mostly one-shot kills, why do we have trouble with the .243? Gee whiz, guys! Do you think hunting skills and shot placement might be factors? He took only head shots, always under thirty yards. (It is brush country where he lived and hunted.)
I realize topography differs, but with his results you can no longer call it luck. He had skill.

By the way, the venison he cooked was delicious. (I brought the beer.)
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Old March 24, 1999, 08:59 AM   #29
Rob Pincus
Join Date: October 9, 1998
Location: Hotels
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I would think that guy was using head shots, dennis.. most poachers I know or have known do. THey also use spotlights and often are not great shots, but shoot from the greatest positions of advantage. Besides that, the fact that he was a paocher makes m ethink he could also have been a liar.

AS for the bullets used, I really don;t know what type he was using. I agree that some bullets are better than others, but I don;t hink handloading has anything to do with it. You can buy a standarad softpoint and hope for the best, but there are certainly some outstanding factory rounds out there (Ballistic Silvertip, Failsafe, Partition Gold).
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Old March 24, 1999, 04:34 PM   #30
Art Eatman
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I have a buddy who deer hunts in the Apalachicoa River swamps near Blountstown, Florida. I was a bit upset the first time we went out hunting, as he was using a .22 Mag!

Granted that most of the deer are rather smallish, but he was regularly successful with heart shots. Damfino. Not my style...

I've used the 85-grain Sierr HPBT exclusively in my .243 and have never lost a deer. I dunno, maybe killed 20 or so with it...If they're looking at you, shoot the white spot, and they fall dead. I also agree about hitting the lungs near the heart, rather than the heart itself.

I won't use the .243 on West Texas mule deer. Just not enough gun, for a body shot.

I shot one muley with a .30-'06 at maybe 30 yards, right through the neck. I was truly astounded that the bullet did not exit! On CenTex whitetail, there was always an exit hole of significant size...

Count me in with those who believe bullet selection and shot placement are the prime factors.

Regards, Art
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Old March 26, 1999, 03:38 AM   #31
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I gotta agree that the X-bullet, or another premium bullet is the way to go. The lung shot, taking both lungs, is way better than a heart shot in terms of getting a quick kill; anything you want to kill quick shoot through the shoulder, not behind it on a broadside shot. That generates more fragments of bone that do amazing things to lungs and heart, and generally takes the top off the heart as well as both lungs. As far as not ruining meat, the behind the shoulder shot works well, but placement is much more critical. It's easy to go too far back and get liver or , worse, paunch.

I've never seen a center of the shoulder shot not work on any type of game when using good bullets and adequate calibers.

Art, I gotta ask, what bullet were you using in that '06 for the muley neck shot? I've gotten over 3 feet of penetration with my '06 180gr X-bullet loads.
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Old March 27, 1999, 01:33 PM   #32
Keith Rogan
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Here in Alaska, the natives almost exclusively use .223's for all their hunting. The Ruger mini 14 being the favored rifle.
They take caribou which go up into the 600 pound range and moose which go...1800 pounds?
My elderly neighbor, a Koniag, took many brown bears with his fathers .25/35 Winchester and countless deer, seals and sea lions.
These bears here in Kodiak are massive. 2000 pound boars have been weighed in and 1500 pounders are taken every year.
I asked him how in hell he killed Brown Bears with a .25/35.
He told me you had to sneak up close (30 yards) and then circle till he got your wind. A browny will normally stand on his hind legs when he smells a man and growl or "woof", He would wait for the mouth to open and then shoot into the roof of the bears mouth.
He was absolutely serious about this and I was amazed. I said something like "Christ Hank, what if you miss?" and he replied "Oh, you DON'T want to miss!".
Another neighbor, also a native has hunted deer here on Kodiak with a .22 mag pistol since the late 60's. He never misses. He goes out at mid-day and stalks them to their bed and shoots them between the eyes.
Its about skill, not calibers.

The Bears and Bear Maulings Page:

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Old March 28, 1999, 01:29 PM   #33
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I’ve been pondering for days how to say all this and still I’m unhappy with
my attempt.

With my scant knowledge of poaching or poachers or (unfortunately) of
much true hunting, I am aware of only two types of poachers:

1) Shoot-it-if-it-moves poachers.
-- “Big shots” (pun intended) who feel they are above the law, beyond
safety rules, etc. because of their money, position, or “contacts”.
-- Drunks with guns and other “wannabe big shots”.
-- I put these scumbags in the same category as the “legitimate” hunter
who kills game and lets it lie - wasted - killed only for the “hunter’s” personal

2) Necessity poachers. They take an occasional deer, illegally but out of
necessity, to feed their families. Personally, in this case, I don’t care if they
use flashlights, lure ‘em with corn, or put salt on their tail. This is
“subsistence” hunting - not a sport. Most of the game wardens hereabouts
can tell the difference and, in view of the glut of deer, typically “don’t catch”
these folks.

In any case, poaching is against the law. But we have agreed that the law is
often more about “control” than morality or common sense:
-- Giving you a hi-cap magazine makes you a “savior of society”; if I try to
purchase one, I’m a “threat to society”.
-- Killing a deer out of season may hurt the size of the deer herd; without
regard to overpopulation starving many of them to death.

Given my post, I understand you saying my friend could be a liar, but:
- There are many more facts here than I’m aware of.
- I’m aware of more facts that I would air on this forum, and
- my friends aren’t liars - or they don’t stay my friends.

In some twenty years, I my friend gave his word sparingly and
stood by it. By his own admission, his count may have been off by a
“couple”. But, if he said he took “around” thirty deer - he took ‘em. If he
said he took ‘em with a .22 magnum rifle, he did. I’ll have to stand by my
friend and disagree with you in this (and only in this one) case. Apparently
my friend, the poacher, is an exception to your experience - which (I hasten
to repeat) is much greater than mine.

Maybe I should add this. Your hunting stories, photos, and reputation show
you to be a true sportsman. I would bet that if we each had the same facts
we usually would come to the same conclusion. With the possible exception
of stabbing tuskers to death! (Jeez!)

On the other hand, if you believe that taking game for food outside the
calendar days dictated by the government makes a man a liar, then let’s just
agree to disagree.
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Old March 29, 1999, 01:50 AM   #34
Art Eatman
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Ipecac: Through the years, I've used 150-grain bullets from Hornady, Remington (Bronze Point) and Sierra.

The mule deer neck-shot which did not exit was a Sierra. I think most likely that at the close range--30 yards--the bullet might have blown up...It was a first-time experience.

All these bullets have exited body shots on whitetail up to 135-lb field-dressed weight, and out to 350 yards.

I've gotta start from scratch to work up a load with some of the new bullet designs. I have read that the jackets are a bit harder, and if one uses an old "pet" load, pressures can be higher--possibly too much higher. If and when I get a "round tuit", I'll post my findings in the handloading section...

G'night, Art
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