Son's First Rifle

2ndHand

5 year old buck +
My son is currently 12 and passed his hunter safety program earlier this year. He will be deer hunting for this first time this year. After considering different rifles and calibers, we decided on the Ruger American in .243, added a Nikon Buckmasters scope in 3x9x40. Hoping to get it sighted in the next couple of weeks so he can spend some time practicing...look out deer!!!:)

JRifle2.jpg
 

sandbur

5 year old buck +
Good luck to the new hunter!
 

foggy

5 year old buck +
Good luck, Use good bullets in these smaller calibers. 100 grain partitions?....may be a good choice.
 

sandbur

5 year old buck +
Good luck, Use good bullets in these smaller calibers. 100 grain partitions?....may be a good choice.
It must be old school thinking, but I have concerns about .243 on big northern deer. Good suggestion.
 

2ndHand

5 year old buck +
Good luck, Use good bullets in these smaller calibers. 100 grain partitions?....may be a good choice.

Thanks for the tip - I haven't looked into bullets yet...;)
 

bryant

5 year old buck +
Not much experience with them but 100 grain soft points and good shot placement should yield plenty of gut piles.
 
M

MoBuckChaser

Guest
I like the smaller caliber for a youth. They don't get as gun shy, because the shoulder does not get beat up so bad when practicing. Good Choice!
 

scott44

5 year old buck +
I bought my oldest son a .243 for his first gun and it's has done him well and he has killed quite a few whitetails with it, now it's his varmint gun. I agree with Foggy on the 100gr partition bullets. Good luck to your son!
 

foggy

5 year old buck +
http://www.accurateshooter.com/cartridge-guides/243win/

Pretty good article to get up to speed on the 243. I own a custom built 243 ackley improved rifle....and it's got a match grade 26" barrel with flutes and all. Tight neck and reworked trigger and so on...with a nifty mc millan stock. Pretty gun. Shoots reaaly good...but it has a slow twist and the heaviest bullets it will stabilize is about 80 grains. When I had it built I was into long-range PD and varmint shooting. Now....not so much. I would consider using it for plains hunts on deer or antelope....but not in the woods. I'm color blind and I can't track worth two hoots in a tin can. :cool:o_O;)
 

wklman

5 year old buck +
The one thing I've learned about the .243 is that it expends most of its energy inside of an animal. Not much of a blood trail but most times you don't need it because the bullet did it's job inside the animal And made mush out of the vitals. I've got an uncle thats shot deer in mn with an old winchester model 100 in .243 for 40 years and he swears by it. But with any cartridge its about shot placement and if you don't hit them right they're gonna go a long ways.
 

2ndHand

5 year old buck +
I like the smaller caliber for a youth. They don't get as gun shy, because the shoulder does not get beat up so bad when practicing. Good Choice!

Thanks - I was thinking the same thing!
 

2ndHand

5 year old buck +
http://www.accurateshooter.com/cartridge-guides/243win/

Pretty good article to get up to speed on the 243. I own a custom built 243 ackley improved rifle....and it's got a match grade 26" barrel with flutes and all. Tight neck and reworked trigger and so on...with a nifty mc millan stock. Pretty gun. Shoots reaaly good...but it has a slow twist and the heaviest bullets it will stabilize is about 80 grains. When I had it built I was into long-range PD and varmint shooting. Now....not so much. I would consider using it for plains hunts on deer or antelope....but not in the woods. I'm color blind and I can't track worth two hoots in a tin can. :cool:o_O;)

Hey Foggy, Many thanks for the article link...this will help a lot!!;)
 

tooln

5 year old buck +
Good luck to your son. The .243 should last him for years. He'll be able to hand it down to his some day.
 

Jordan Selsor

5 year old buck +
Great minds think alike;) I chose the same rifle for my son, wife or whoever else wants to use it. I grabbed a cheaper bushnell trophy XLT due to a good sale at a big box store. The cool thing is the ruger american rimfire is really similar size and feel of the center fire compact which is great for lots of cheap trigger time.. Heck I think Im gonna leave my custom rem 700 308 in the safe and hunt with this 243 this yr...
image (24).jpeg
 

foggy

5 year old buck +
Given a choice.....I'd hunt with the bigger bullets. I've lost a deer with a 243...and I thought I'd hit him squarely.....but I ain't the only guy that's lost a deer, I suppose. Still....I like heavier bullets.
 

Jordan Selsor

5 year old buck +
Given a choice.....I'd hunt with the bigger bullets. I've lost a deer with a 243...and I thought I'd hit him squarely.....but I ain't the only guy that's lost a deer, I suppose. Still....I like heavier bullets.

what bullet you were using? I killed a 4 yr old buck with a 223 several yrs ago with 70gr barnes tsx handloads. Havent had time to work up a load for the 243 yrt so I grabbed a couple boxes of 100gr hornady's
 
M

MoBuckChaser

Guest
what bullet you were using? I killed a 4 yr old buck with a 223 several yrs ago with 70gr barnes tsx handloads. Havent had time to work up a load for the 243 yrt so I grabbed a couple boxes of 100gr hornady's

Nothing wrong with 100 grain Hornady's! 95 grain Nosler ballistic tips, maybe Spitzers?
 

sandbur

5 year old buck +
I can remember one relative who lost a big buck at extremely close range with a .243. Evidently the bullet blew up on the shoulder blade. He felt he might have had a varmint load in the rifle by mistake. Make sure of your loads.

I believe the range was 15 yards or less and he followed the buck the next day. Just limping along in front of him, but season was closed and he could not carry a rifle.
 
B

BJE80

Guest
In 2-3 years when my son is ready it will either be a .243 or 7mm-08. Good luck to you guys.
 

2ndHand

5 year old buck +
Great minds think alike;) I chose the same rifle for my son, wife or whoever else wants to use it. I grabbed a cheaper bushnell trophy XLT due to a good sale at a big box store. The cool thing is the ruger american rimfire is really similar size and feel of the center fire compact which is great for lots of cheap trigger time.. Heck I think Im gonna leave my custom rem 700 308 in the safe and hunt with this 243 this yr...
View attachment 2165

Looking good Jordan! They do look very similar. Hoping to sight the rifle in this coming weekend - if I can find bullets. I bought a couple of the Nikon Buckmasters last year when they were on closeout for 150 at Cabela's (used points). Cabela's is building a new store near me that will open early next year. I have about 650 dollars in points that I would like to buy a turkey shotgun with. Thanks for the reply!
 
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