.243 for a long-range Varmint and Coyote gun?


January 19, 2004, 12:43 AM
I'm thinking about getting a Rem. 700 VLS in .243. I have a 700 LTR in .223, which I figure is good for up to 400 yards. With the .243 and the 26" barrel, would I have better performance up to 600 yards? (I know, I know - what are the chances of seeing and hitting something that small at 600 yards...) I have .308 and .223 covered and I guess I'm wondering if there is a place for the .243 for this type of shooting. I'm not interested in selling furs, so I don't really care about doing the least amount of damage. (I guess if it would make a good mount, though.)

(I guess I've been looking for an excuse to get the VLS in .243 for a while, too...)

Any ideas?


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Art Eatman
January 19, 2004, 08:38 AM
Opinion: From a "clean kill" standpoint, 400 yards on a coyote with a .223 is sorta stretching things.

I've been reading of exceptional accuracy at long range with .243s and heavy bullets. Achieving hits "out yonder" is quite feasible.

The big issue for long-range varmint hunting with the smaller bullets is wind drift and knowing the exact distance, in order to get a hit. The next question is remaining velocity in order to have bullet expansion and get a clean kill. Again, from reading, the .243 oughta do okay. (My personal experience is limited to some 300 yards, on deer.)

It seems to me that if one is hunting prairie dogs, where there will be long strings of fire, group size is an important factor in one's rifle. For coyotes, however, where only one shot will likely be taken, the most important thing is that the first shot always go to the point of aim. (If you're only gonna shoot once--or maybe twice--what difference does it make where the fifth or tenth shot "flies"?)



January 19, 2004, 12:05 PM
for long range shooting ballistic coefficient and muzzle velocity is everything. the 243 is better than the 223, but there's a good reason the 6.5's and 7's are popular w/ the long-range set: killer bc's.

compare the 260 and 7-08 to the 243 and see what you come up w/. for my money, i'd look for a 7-08 (because i can't stand the way 260 sounds), but the 260 might have a small advantage at way out there ranges...

remington does not catalog a 7-08 in their varminters, but they are out there. special runs, and other influences have snuck a few out the door... just gotta look.

January 19, 2004, 04:16 PM
Interesting. I'll look at their ballistics. I assumed that .243, being based on the same case as 7-08, would shoot flatter, but I'll look at it.

Thanks again,

January 19, 2004, 05:12 PM
It sounds like you're set on the Remington, but if you're not, you may want to take a look at the Model 70 Stealth II (http://www.winchester-guns.com/prodinfo/catalog/detail.asp?cat_id=535&type_id=955&cat=001C). I've read a few articles where the author said they liked the last stealth better than the 700. From reading the description, it seems like the only changes made to the stealth II are an aluminum bedding block, controlled round push feed (as opposed to push feed), and an extra sling swivel to make mounting a bipod and a sling easier.

January 19, 2004, 06:01 PM
Look at rate of twist before buying. There was a recent article in Outdoor Life about this. I find my Savage does well with both 85 and 100 gr and ok with 110 gr at closer ranges, haven't tested it out to 400 yards though.

January 19, 2004, 06:14 PM
Remember that you're maybe gonna want a faster twist barrel for heavier bullets...

Look at the ballistics for the 6/284 and the 6.5/284...

January 20, 2004, 02:08 AM
I read an article that proposed the .243win as a replacement/compromise between the .223 and .308 for military operations.

The .243 was supposed to have flatter trajectory than either (natch) and more energy at 500yds than a .223 at the *muzzle*. (and slightly beating the .308 at 400yds if I recall correctly!)

The .243 should be murder, but as you've said, you already have a .308?

Maybe what you really want is a sub-MOA accurate semi-auto AR-10T in .300WSM? :D)

January 20, 2004, 09:37 AM
I have used 6mm remington extensively on groundhogs. It works well. Good long range performance. Very humane.

January 20, 2004, 11:35 AM
I've been searching for a good long-range coyote rifle as well (just to have). I've settled on the .25-06 Remington to fill this niche.

January 20, 2004, 04:06 PM
There numerous excellent bullets made for long range work with 243.

Some that come to mind - Berger 95 105 - Hornaday A -Max 105 - Sierra - 107 - there are others out there that i have not shot yet.

I shoot a 6mm Ack Imp. Nothing like winging a 105 grain projectile [A-max]at @ 3150 fps with this type of groups.

I shot several differing guns in 243 Winchester before i went to 6mm.

All factory guns that were fairly accurate for what they were. I had a Ruger 77- V that was an excellent shooter.

Whatever gun you would choose - a premium scope is a must.


Brian Williams
January 20, 2004, 04:14 PM
I have a NEF Superlite Handirifle and it is a great gun, very light and quick handleing gun makes for easy packing in the fields. Mine will do 1.25 groups all day long and my son's will do .75" most of the time.

I have a cheapy golden antler 3x9 scope and his has a off brand cheapy also.

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