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I noticed my friend's distributor still has some M77 MkII Targets in .243 in stock. But I've also fondled the Hawkeye Tactical and like the looks of it. But I also wanted a Frontier and never got one.

So it really comes down to barrel length (16.5", 20", or 26"). All are 1 in 9" twist. My Dad has always loved the .243 Winchester, so I guess I owe it to myself to own atleast one. So what do you guy's think ?







 

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comments removed.

C'mon Slim...
i thought i was just giving him my best advice..not sure i understand what i did wrong ,in advising him to get a savage an save his self some accurising work. that is my opinion..slim
 

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Nawth East Moderatah
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If I was to choose between the three rifles pictures, it would be the 20" version because:
You could hunt deep woods with it, which can be a chore at times with a 26" barrel.
The MV would not be that much of a difference from the 26"
The heavier barrel MAY offer more accuracy and stability.
Does Ruger offer a 20" version in stainless or laminate?

The only down side of the middle version pictured may be it's weight.

If the gun was to be used as a 'mountain gun', I'd go with the 16".

In Virginia, do you have wide open that you'd be able to benefit from a 26" tube Tang?
 

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None of the above.:D

I'd pick up an XS-7 in 243 and shoot circles around those guns while only costing about 50% of what they cost.:cool:
 

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Can't believe you haven't included a Savage Model 14 Classic in that line up. Believe that model is the most under rated firearm available today in terms of quality. Excellant accuracy, gorgeous blueing with real wood checkered stock. After getting the 325 WSM couldn't believe the value in that model. Sense then have picked up several other calibers in that model for $600 out the door while the painted finish plastic stocked models are selling for several hundred dollars more.
 

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Got One(Kinda)

I have owned a Ruger M77 MKII Compact(top weapon pictured above) for a couple of years now. It is chambered in .308 but kinda wish now it was .243. I believe that the Frontier has a 3/4 rib for mounting a IER scope, however this rib can be removed easily.

The weapon is very compact,balanced perfectly(w/ a 2-7X33 Leupold),and very swing-able. I got this weapon expressly for shooting outta a tent blind and for hauling up into and shooting from a ladder stand. It is great for this. Initially the weapon was somewhat inaccurate, but after floating the bbl and tweaking the trigger is a <MOA shooter now.

I would also suggest that you can make up the difference in the lower vels being a shorter bbl,with some of the excellent "non lead" bullets on the market today. Barnes TSX comes to mind,in the <90gr weights. My .243 Lone Eagle loves these.

If you are looking for a weapon really "compact".....take a feel of the Ruger Compact(or the Frontier).

Good Shootin' ---pruhdlr
 

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I'd get the third one, Hawkeye in stainless steel and laminate. I have that version in 308, model 17191. I've had other 243 rifles years ago and got them all to shoot 1/2 MOA.
 

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Tang,

I just flipped through the book of Revelations...was wondering if any other signs of the times were happening! The idea of YOU, asking about a .243?! Next thing you know, you'll be buying an '06! :eek:

I might also add that we have something in common; my dad has a Model 700 BDL in .243 Winchester and his affection for it is exceeded only by his praise. When used properly, with broadside shots and well-placed bullets, there isn't a deer in existence that can't be dropped in his tracks with it. Even having said that, I think of it as more suitable to long-range varmints and pronghorn than deer.

Of the three, I like the "look" of the middle one and would certainly go with the 20" barrel, for the reasons Chris already mentioned. If you think of the .243 as a "super-magnum" varmint rifle, maybe your conscience will allow you to buy such a puny cartridge? :D
 

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I'm of the opinion that any .243 needs at least 22 inches of barrel to really be worth owning, and is better off with 24 inches. It is a cartridge that uses velocity as a very important part of what it can accomplish, and anything shorter compromises that velocity too much.

However, I really don't like carrying anything longer than 24 inch barrels when hunting, so, the truth is, I wouldn't want any of those particular rifles in .243. If the purpose was purely targets and varmint sniping, and the gun would never go deer or coyote hunting, I would pick the 26 inch barrel. It would certainly provide all the potential of the cartridge, and as long as I didn't try to carry it in the bush, I could likely tolerate the length.
 

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My wife hunts with a Rem 700 in 6mm with a 22" barrel. It is light and handy as heck. The "issues" with velocity loss and shorter barrels are, in my opinion, very much overrated. If anything - the slightly lower velocities as compared to longer barrels are easier on the bullets. The 6mm has shown itself to be sensitive to bullet performance as there was one brand of bullets that would not go through a small whitetail on a broadside shot. That is problematic (at best) on deer, and very bad news on feral pigs.

I know that most people don't want to hear the bullet performance can be more reliable under say 3,000fps, but it's definitely true with standard cup and core bullets. Disregard for premium bullets -

My 2 cents.
 

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The loss in velocity, on average, would be 20-30fps, per inch of barrel lost. Given the design of modern bullets, or even the old cup n' core stuff, this is not problematic in any meaningful sense. Even going from 26" down to 20", one might lose 200fps off peak velocity. When going from 3100fps down to 2900fps, you would see a net loss of maximum point-blank range of 18 feet (from 303 feet down to 285). That will make little, if any, difference to the woodchuck or whitetail. With lighter bullets, this difference is even less, as they do not retain velocity as well.

Sometimes the numbers don't add up to what the gun writers would have you think they do.
 

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The loss in velocity, on average, would be 20-30fps, per inch of barrel lost. Given the design of modern bullets, or even the old cup n' core stuff, this is not problematic in any meaningful sense. Even going from 26" down to 20", one might lose 200fps off peak velocity. When going from 3100fps down to 2900fps, you would see a net loss of maximum point-blank range of 18 feet (from 303 feet down to 185). That will make little, if any, difference to the woodchuck or whitetail. With lighter bullets, this difference is even less, as they do not retain velocity as well.

Sometimes the numbers don't add up to what the gun writers would have you think they do.
Yeah, but ........... Sometimes the differences between magnums and "standard" rounds is less than that velocity loss. Take the .280 Rem and the 7mm Rem Mag as an example.

If you buy a race horse, you really should try to let him run. I think that, especially as you go smaller in bullet diameter and weight, you should probably try for all the velocity you can get to help out. I think the .243 is as small and light as I would ever want to go for a deer cartridge. I have never had a 100 Grain Partition do anything but perform very well, and I believe there are other bullets that can do very well at the maximum velocities you get from the case.

For me bullet performance with premiums is absolutely reliable, so I start to think all the velocity I can get is important.

I thought, actually, that this would make sense to Tang, and he might want to take such performance differences into account. ;)
 

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Tang,

I just flipped through the book of Revelations...was wondering if any other signs of the times were happening! The idea of YOU, asking about a .243?! Next thing you know, you'll be buying an '06! :eek:

:D
Me Too! :D Tang, if you are in the market for a .243, I'd go ahead and choose one of the Rugers you pictured in your post. Personally, If I were going to buy a .243 Win. I'd would choose a Ruger M-77 Hawkeye Ultralight.:)
 

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IMO, there is no need for any 308 length standard cartridge to be housed in any gun with a barrel longer than 20". Cartridges like the 243, 260, 7-08, 308, 338, 358 are best suited in shorter, lighter, handier guns. My 308 XS-7 carbine loses little in velocity [150s in the 2600-2775fps range] and my model 7 in 260 has no problem reaching 2700-2800fps with 129 Hornadys. I find the shorter guns much easier to handle in the woods and mountains chasing critters than any 22-26" barreled monstousity.
 

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Yeah, but ........... Sometimes the differences between magnums and "standard" rounds is less than that velocity loss. Take the .280 Rem and the 7mm Rem Mag as an example.

If you buy a race horse, you really should try to let him run. I think that, especially as you go smaller in bullet diameter and weight, you should probably try for all the velocity you can get to help out. I think the .243 is as small and light as I would ever want to go for a deer cartridge. I have never had a 100 Grain Partition do anything but perform very well, and I believe there are other bullets that can do very well at the maximum velocities you get from the case.

For me bullet performance with premiums is absolutely reliable, so I start to think all the velocity I can get is important.

I thought, actually, that this would make sense to Tang, and he might want to take such performance differences into account. ;)
If a 243 Winchester starts a 100gr Partition out at a MV of 3100fps and 2134fpe, it will retain roughly 2443fps and 1325fpe, at 300 yards. Trajectory over this distance is sufficiently flat, as previously discussed. Is it your assertion that 2443fps and 1325fpe is not adequate to ensure expansion, penetration, and overall killing "power" from the 100gr Partition bullet? If that is not your assertion, and you believe it will get the job done, is 2270fps and 1144fpe still good enough? That's what it drops to, when started out at 2900fps.

I can't see Tang using a 243 Win. for deer when he has the much better .264 WM in the safe.
 

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