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243 Win 105 A-max/Superformance

04 Sep 2011
@ 04:33 am (GMT)

Jim Moseley

Well Nathan, I finally got my 243 Savage Model 11 glass bedded and my for first job it actually looks like my first job. Not pretty, but it works great. Also developed a great recipe for the 105 A-max.
Supeformance - 43.3 grs
CCI 200 LR
Win brass
Bullet seated - .005 off lands
Barrel length -22"
MV- 2870 fps - velocity determined thru drop charts,not chrono.
Shoots in the .2's @100 and 1.5" @400yds (a little windy)
So my question is what's max range for southern whitetail up to 70Kilos (150 lbs)? When I ran the numbers, the effective range seems longer than I thought it would be. I plan to test it on a 80-100 lb doe before going after a large buck. Also I have a friend that has a feral hog problem. What's your opinion on velocity and killing range?


04 Sep 2011
@ 08:31 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: 243 Win 105 A-max/Superformance
Hi Jim, accuracy is everything with the .243 so thats great news.

I have used the .243 out to 600 yards on game. Many guys use the cartridge out to this range, some pushing ranges even further. However, I do not believe the .243 is a truly adequate long range cartridge because, if a gust of wind takes the projectile well off course and into the liver area of game, the small projectile does not have the capacity to anchor or slow down game in such a way as to allow for a follow up shot. In other words, on a windless day, the 105 grain A-Max works well right down to 1600fps, still showing full fragmentation at my often quoted 1400fps. But where wind is at play, 400 yards should be considered a long shot, in order to ensure the broadest possible wounding for follow up shots.

The more you work to the strengths of the cartridge, the better. You will see some pretty spectacular kills and immensely broad wounding. The trick, after seeing such good results, is to not then push the cartridge beyond its limits, avoiding the seesaw of dramatic versus abysmal killing.

I have banned the use of the .243 on our block for hunting pigs (our primary game species), whether at close range or long range, there have been too many failures. Neck shots at close ranges- bullet blow up, neck shots at long range- narrow wounding, head shots- bullet blow up / no kill, body shots that lack enough energy after penetrating the shield to effect fast killing. On pigs, everything can go right shot after shot but then, just as it seems everything is perfect, a string failures cause both disappointment to the hunter and cruel wounds.

On pigs, use the 85 grain TSX (or GS bullets) driven at 3200fps. Although I have banned the .243 here, this is the one exception for women or young folk. If you want to give the .243 a go on pigs, this is the most consistent performer out to normal hunting ranges- combined with good shoulder shot placement, initiating the broadest possible wounds combined with full penetration.

On pigs, if the TSX is not used, please consider this: if you can use more gun (no shoulder injuries etc) then you should. Never ever defend a cartridge out of pride, never place your self worth (validate decisions or suffer threats to self image) on a cartridge, its not worth it. Choose a powerful cartridge that you can comfortably shoot. The 7mm-08, .308 and .270 are good minimums.

05 Sep 2011
@ 08:35 am (GMT)

Jim Moseley

Re: 243 Win 105 A-max/Superformance
Thanks Nathan! I have my 7 mag for serious work. Another question. With a 22" barrel should I be able to gain another 100 to150 fps with the Superformance powder? I here people talk about nodes for accuracy with one at the low end and another at the high end of velocity. The 2870 fps seems low for the Superformance powder.
06 Sep 2011
@ 07:18 am (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: 243 Win 105 A-max/Superformance
Thats definitely something I see week to week, sweet spots versus less desirable accuracy, coming and going with changes in charge rates. One of the major things to be aware of, is that we sometimes miss the high end sweet spots due to increased recoil intertia versus in-adequate shooting technique. Its not such a problem in the .243, but its something to take into consideration when observing groups.

Yes, I think it would be worth having a go at looking for another sweet spot with the SF powder. In the parent .308 Win case, this powder gives around 150fps more velocity than top end loads with current powders in 22" barrels and does so with relative ease. Your current load has a good combination of velocity and accuracy, if you can find a faster load with similar accuracy, it would be a great bonus.


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