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What advice would you give to a friend of mine who has hunted with a .243 for almost 15 years and is now wanting a .300 win mag? His .243 is a Remington model 7600 and kicks like a .22. I explained to him that the change in recoil will be incredible. He says he has shot a .300 but probably not more than a handfull of rounds. He shoots his .243 quite well, but I also told him that he may develop a flinch if he jumps that gap. I was just wondering what some of you guys think about this situation. On a side note, I also explained to him that a .300 mag may be a bit much for our smallish Alabama deer. Your opinions are (as always) appreciated.
 

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If he want's to change calibers then he should look at the .270 or .308. The .300 Win. Mag. is way too much over kill.
 

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The .300 Win Mag has about 3x the recoil energy of the .243 and about 2x the recoil velocity.

A .300 Win Mag is overkill for deer except at very long ranges, so have him think back over the last 15 years and ask what ranges his deer were taken at. Ask him how many deer he decided not to shoot because of a range issue.

One or two shots on the day of the hunt isn't going do any long term damage. But sighting in a practicing shooting from a bench is not going to be pleasant.

IMHO, anyone taking the kind of shots where a 300 Win Mag would be needed should be doing a lot of practice at those ranges. Most hunters would do well by passing at anything over 250-300 yards -- irrespective of the cartridge they are using. Drop, wind, uphill/downhill, range estimation, and intimate knowledge of the ballistics of the load in your gun (not whatever "marketing number" is on the side of the box) are necessary for a humane kill.

There are myriad of cartridges suitable for deer hunting out to 300 and maybe even 400 yards that would work for 95-99% of the shots that present themselves, and with a lot less recoil, blast, and expense.

.25-06
.260
6.5-284
6.5x55 Swede
.270
.280
7mm-08
.284 Win
7mm Rem Mag
.308
.30-06

And most of those would be suitable for all of the lower 48 game within reasonable ranges.
 

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If he want's to change calibers then he should look at the .270 or .308. The .300 Win. Mag. is way too much over kill.
A strong +1. Other than Grizzly bears, there isn't a game animal on the North American Continent that can't be taken effectively with either of the suggested cartridges and with a lot less recoil than the .300 Win Mag. I'd also add the 30-06 to the list for consideration.
 

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What advice would you give to a friend of mine who has hunted with a .243 for almost 15 years and is now wanting a .300 win mag? His .243 is a Remington model 7600 and kicks like a .22. I explained to him that the change in recoil will be incredible. He says he has shot a .300 but probably not more than a handfull of rounds. He shoots his .243 quite well, but I also told him that he may develop a flinch if he jumps that gap. I was just wondering what some of you guys think about this situation. On a side note, I also explained to him that a .300 mag may be a bit much for our smallish Alabama deer. Your opinions are (as always) appreciated.
ABolt,

Seems to me you gave him the warning about the increase in recoil. About all you should do! If he's h**l bent on a 300 WM, there not much more you can do.
 

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I think Ray got it right: You explained the substantial recoil differences between the two, and how the .243 will kill a deer just as dead, even at 300+ yards, as the 300WM will. Beyond providing him with those essential facts, all you can do is sit back and watch his hair jump each time he touches off that big 30! :D
 

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Let him get what he wants. Thats the fun of guns and they come and go.

Suggest a rifle with a soft recoil pad.

The 243 is not, in my view even close to being a 300 yard deer cartridge.
 

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I've done exactly what your friend is wanting to do years ago. I've owned a couple 300 mags but for the hunting I do and the ranges I shoot a 243 is just fine. Expense of ammo now a days will keep him off the range when shooting the 300 also. The biggest rifle I own now is a 308 and I wouldn't feel undergunned for anything in the lower 48. Perhaps if I hunted at ranges over 500yds I would consider the 300win mag again but right now my 45colt trapper has all the range and power that I need for where I hunt. I say let him experiment, he'll probably come full circle again and realize a short-action cartridge will give plenty power and range for the eastern and southern deer-hunter. Dave
 

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No such thing as over kill and the 243 or 300Win Mag (using a 150 or 165gr bullet) are DRT on deer no matter what their size. Used them both on deer and with the 300Win mag can reach out down range with more but they both kill and I like them both.
 

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Let him get what he wants. Thats the fun of guns and they come and go.

Suggest a rifle with a soft recoil pad.

The 243 is not, in my view even close to being a 300 yard deer cartridge.
For those southern deer, you really don't think the 243 is "even close to being a 300 yard" cartridge? How far would you expect it to be effective? Some folks out west use a 243 on antelope at 400 yards and those critters are about the same size as an Alabama whitetail, from what I've seen.
 

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Don't you know that after 200yds the 243 with 100gr bullets will bounce off deer, their hide is just too thick !!:) On a serious note, a 243 with a premium bullet is a good 300yd deer cartridge. Really, a premium bullet isn't needed but I like to shoot thru'em at extreme angles. If you like a low recoil gun that shoots flat and leaves a 50 cent piece exit wound a 243 is a good one. Dave
 

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if he really wants it then let him get it, but a little tip, try to talk him into the brand/model of rifle you like, that way if it turns out to be too much for him, you get a cheap rifle out of the deal!
 

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If he ever wants to hunt other animals get the 300. Putting all this stuff in his head about recoil doesn't help. You can get lower recoil loads for the 300 or load those guys down with 125 grain bullets at 3000 FPS. That will still pole axe deer at over 500 yards.

The 243 is certainly fine for any deer walking out to 400 yards or so, but life is short and as shooters we love guns and a variety of them..
 

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I had a 25:06 that only had a plastic end cap but no true recoil pad and it would make the next mornings coffee cup feel like a 2 gal bucket after 40 rounds, that said there is recoil energy and recoil velocity, Chuck Hawks has a table of most calibre recoil that may give a rough idea where he's heading.

Some have a large push but slow velocity so any good recoil pad will soak it up, my 308 weighs near three times what the stock VSF rifle does, recoil in it is pretty easy and range days shooting 100 rounds is not an issue

Any 243 will be easy to shoot, 22:250 is another easy shooter, both make lots of noise but little recoil, if he's shot a 300 then he has at least some idea of what to expect, many buy a large gun without having ever firing one of similar calibre.

I've shot a 300 Whetherby mag and they give enough recoil to not take them lightly, but like any everyone is different, I have seen a guy shoot a 50 with no brake, and I doubt he would want to do it again.

The 300 has real good ballistics and is a good calibre worth having, the 7mm Rem Mag is my favourite and shoots flat and hits hard enough to kill most anything I would come across, I doubt anyone would enjoy having their shoulder damaged but there are good enough recoil pads now days that soak up most all the pain
 

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GOOD GRIEF ! ! it would sound like the 300 WinMag is a really bad kicking rifle !

in all reality, it's a pussycat. it doesn't kick much more than an 0-6 and it don't do a whole lot more either. I don't personally think that it's a very good 30 caliber, but lots of folks do. I don't like the stupid belt. tell him if he wants a really good 30, to go and get a .308. if that isn't enough, to get a 300 RUM.....if he wants less recoil, tell him to go find a 300 Savage in a good bolt gun, and learn to load for it...... theres always more than one way to skin a cat, and it's a totally individual thing, this rifle-caliber thing....

tell him to get what he wants, he will anyway, and then you can be a hero helping him over the hurdles of the increased recoil.......

"You can lead a man to knowledge, but you can't make him think"
 

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tell him to get what he wants, he will anyway, and then you can be a hero helping him over the hurdles of the increased recoil.......
If nothing else, next year the OP might get a real good deal on a lightly used .300 Win Mag rifle ;)

Your friend sounds like he's talked to someone who likes the .300 Win Mag a lot and has a bug to get one. That's fine but, IMO, unless he's shooting at deer across bean fields, he's just going to be dealing with a lot of extra recoil on every shot 'for the fun of it'.

I used to hunt with a .30-06 and then a .270 Win and recently, I did the opposite... I went down in recoil and the .260 is my go-to gun for whitetails. I wouldn't hesitate to use the .260 on whitetails anywhere in North America. Mule deer too, if I ever get a chance at them.
 

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300Win Mag does not kick much more than a 30-06 but I will say from my experience hunting with one using my handloads that it does reach out future than the 06 and does rattle the cage a little more. :D
 

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My thoughts on it he should buy what he wants. Since your friend is an experienced hunter, I'm betting once he gets in the zone he probably won't even feel the recoil. Sighting in and practice might be another deal.
Just my .02 worth.
 
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