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Location: Sneads, Florida
Joined: 11/13/2006
Posts: 122
223 for hunting Whitetails

Is a 223 a good rifle for hunting whitetails? My daughter wants to hunt and I think she could handle this rifle.

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Location: Summit, IL
Joined: 10/22/2006
Posts: 706
223 for hunting Whitetails

In all reality I would not recommend it. Its really just too small. Will it kill deer? Yes with a perfectly placed shot. Would I want my youngster to use it? Nope. 243 would be the minimum and has been for all my kids. Little to no more kick than the 223 with more power and size. You could also try letting her try a 7mm.08 for size and see if she would be comfy with that. You would then have a perfect deer cartrige that she could grow with. Recoil pads and recoil reducing stock technology has grown by leaps and bounds so really there is no reason that we should have to under-gun our kids because of recoil.

The new TC pro hunter stock has recoil reducing tech built into it and believe me it HELPS immencly. Made my .300 win mag feel like a puppy!!! And BOY was that a relief. That was one of my weapons that I truly dreaded taking to the range to sight in. But if buying a new TC is out of your budget try a Sims labs slip on or cut to fit recoil pad. They do reduce the felt recoil by a large percentage and would make practice a joy for your lil one.

Good luck and thankyou for introducing your child to our great heritage of hunting,
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Moderator
Location: Florida,USA
Joined: 08/21/2003
Posts: 1566
223 for hunting Whitetails

In Florida it is not legal to take Deer with a center-fire rifle that is smaller than .24 cal, which would make a 223 illegal.
As cam suggested a .243 is an excellent choice as is the .08.

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Location: Sneads, Florida
Joined: 11/13/2006
Posts: 122
223 for hunting Whitetails

Thanks for the help. She went with me last year. Just to watch. She is only 12 and weights about 70 lbs. I think I will try the .243.

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Location: NE Kansas
Joined: 03/20/2006
Posts: 2603
223 for hunting Whitetails

The .243 will be choice when my kids are ready to start Thumbs up

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Location: Chesapeake, Va
Joined: 10/21/2007
Posts: 2
223 for hunting Whitetails

Yes the .243 is a very good starter rifle. I started out with one at age 10 and enjoyed so much that 22 years later I am still using it. Very smooth and does not ruin as much meat as the larger calibers. I have even taken an Elk in Colorado, and people say it can't be done. Yes

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Location: USA
Joined: 06/04/2006
Posts: 166
223 for hunting Whitetails

Though in Texas any center fire rifle is legal for deer, the 223 is not the best choice for whitetail deer. though many collect their venison every year with it, IMO hunting deer with it is for expert shooters, not kids, if at all.

As has been reccomended above, the 243 Win is a fine chambering for any kind of deer, as long as the proper 100 gr bullets are used, @ around 3000 fps, MV.

IMO, there isn't a better deer chamberingr, be it Couse, whitetail, blacktail, or muledeer , to be had than a 243 win in a accurate rifle with someone who knows his rifle, and can shoot it!

The 6mm chamberings got a bad name way back in the bigining, because people tried to use the 75, and 80 gr varment bullets on deer, with very poor results. Those bullets were never intended for use on deer at all, but were for shooting P-dags, and coyotes. The 100 gr soft points were the deer bullets, and my favorite 100 gr bullet for deer is the 100 gr Hornady pushed by a load of H-4831 to about 3000 pfs! Zero the rifle 2" high @100 yds, and hold dead on center chest to 300 yds, and start skinning!

The recoil is light, and the effectiveness is far more than most are aware of! Thumbs up

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Location: Muskoka Ontario
Joined: 09/04/2007
Posts: 351
223 for hunting Whitetails

The 6.5 x55 is also a great deer gun and can be had preaty cheep especialy the converted military ones.
F.K.

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Location: Florida
Joined: 08/02/2005
Posts: 85
223 for hunting Whitetails

Ganny, please read my latest post about losing two deer in two weeks. I may have lost a deer hit solid with a .44 caliber sabot from a muzzleloader this afternoon. I see you are also here in Florida. My stomach is in knots right now from losing another swamp buck, please reconsider the .223 as it is two small.

My first deer rifle was a bolt action 30/30 that i picked up cheap in a pawn shop. I put a slip on recoil pad on it (to lenghthen it) and the first buck i killed, I broke its spine and punched a hole clean through. Almost no recoil, try a larger but slower caliber than the .223. they even make it in a 125 grain .30 load.

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Location: East Texas
Joined: 05/17/2007
Posts: 43
223 for hunting Whitetails

Coop.. I ask this of everyone that says they had a solid hit on the animal and didn't recover the animal. How do you know you had a good hit on the animal if you didn't recover it? Just a thought.

Granny.. Like Dugaboy said. Think about the 243 Winchester or the 6MM Remington. The 260 Remington in the model 7 might be a very good rifle/cartridge for a lightweight person. The 250 Savage is another round that is a very good killer with little recoil.

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Location: Summit, IL
Joined: 10/22/2006
Posts: 706
223 for hunting Whitetails

Sometimes ESPECIALLY with something as big as .50 cal. you can see the spot you hit on a deer as it runs away. As far as Bow goes, if you cant see where you hit the deer with an arrow, then you shouldnt have been releasing that arrow anyway because it was too dern fer!!! Thumbs up

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