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308 loaded down to 243 specs?

dandydandy Member Posts: 221 ✭✭✭
In short I have grandkids 6-9 that need some deer hunting time with me. All I hear is how great a 243 is for deer, but I would prefer a 308 for more variety of animals to hunt. I got to thinking why not just reload 110 grain SP bullets and find a powder to match the velocity. Not sure how the lighter bullet will work in a 308. Planning to buy the Ruger American compact in 308. Just thought the lighter bullet and guessing less powder would make recoil close to 243. Any thought to my simple brilliant ideal. [8D]


  • Hawk CarseHawk Carse Member Posts: 4,325 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Hodgdon has a section on reduced loads.

    I think I'd rather load the .308 to .30-30 ballistics with a 150 gr bullet. Those 110s are varmint bullets and might not penetrate well. There used to be some "single shot" bullets made for .30 Herrett and the like that might work if you found some.
  • charliemeyer007charliemeyer007 Member Posts: 7,345 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Starting loads for 125 gr are in 2500 FPS range.
  • MobuckMobuck Member Posts: 13,115 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I'll suggest using the Nosler 125 BT if you do down load the .308. There are several lightweight .308 bullets currently on the market designed for hunting use in the 300AAC which produces about 2200fps.
    I have also had good results with the Remington 125 grain PSP loaded at about 2300 fps out of a .308 bore 7.62x39. If you can find/afford one of the Remington 799 in this caliber and shorten the stock, it makes a great kid's deer rifle. Short, light, low recoil.
    My most successful .243 kid's load was using the now discontinued 80 grain single shot pistol bullets from Sierra(?)at about 2400-2500 fps. Good expansion and decent penetration out to 150 yards on broadside shots. My early attempts at low recoil loads for the 243 resulted in poor expansion and some dismal tracking jobs mostly because the bullets were designed for much higher velocity.
  • dandydandy Member Posts: 221 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    You all make good points. I will get some 125 grain and see how they do. I already have 150 grain so using the 30-30 specs sounds doable as well. Just gotta make some time and do some reloading and going to the range. Its a chore being a grandad.[:D][:D]
  • MG1890MG1890 Member Posts: 4,649
    edited November -1
    I've shot a lot of deer and a few turkeys with a Sierra 125 grain spitzer out of a .308 pistol, 14" barrel. The bullet actually performed very well resulting in good 1 shot kills when deer were lung shot.

    I'd vote for this bullet and a reduced load in the 2000 fps range.
  • Riomouse911Riomouse911 Member Posts: 3,493 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Try the 130 grain TTSX from Barnes. This is a good "big game" bullet that will work very well on deer, when many (not all) of the other lightweight .308 cal bullets are designed more for varmints/paper.

    You have the right idea; as the 'old laws of physics we can't find a way around the mandate that lighter bullets driven to the same velocity as heavier bullets from the same gun will have lower recoil energy delivered to the shooter. When you reduce the bullet velocity a bit as well as reduce the bullet weight, your grandkids will be right at home behind the new gun.
  • Ray BRay B Member Posts: 11,822
    edited November -1
    It depends on how far the kids plan on shooting at something. For years I have used a trimmed down M700 308 for Hunter Education live fire, kids from a little over 4' tall on up. I handloaded 170 grain cast or jacketed bullets with about 18 grains of SR4759 and got velocities about 1800 fps. The recoil was handled by even the smallest kid, as long as he/she held the gun snugly to their shoulder. Such a load should be fine for deer out to 100 yards or so.
  • 243winxb243winxb Member Posts: 264 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Hodgdon Youth Loads Use the 60% rule to reduce the maximum load of other bullet weights.
    [url] [/url]
  • Okie743Okie743 Member Posts: 2,279 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I use Accurate 5744 powder, by Western powders in several rifles for reduced loads for grandkids and people that want reduced recoil for Deer hunting out to around 125 yards at around 30/30 velocities.
    I normally use the same bullets that I use for the Hi-velocity RELOADS. I also save my OLD Hi-Velocity brass for use with the reduced loads and it can be reloaded several times when the vel is approx. 2400 fps or less.
    One some bolt action guns like a Remington 700 I usually load up 3 rounds at the low end of the suggested powder charge then another 3 at mid range of the powder grains and test fire at 65 yards to check for grouping. If the groups are within reason (2 inch or less when using a scope) I do not ever start cranking on the scope adjustments, I then try adjusting the powder charge weight so as the scope adjustments are real close to same at 100 yards for BOTH the Hi-velocity load that the gun likes and the low vel 5744 load and sometimes the low vel load will be so close at 100 yards to both loads that the scope never requires any adjustments when going from one REload to the other. We use the Big mags, 300 Winchester, 7mm rem mag and 30 06's with the 5744 with real good results.

    You can see the low velocity loads using 5744 at the Western powder rifle reload data or you can contact Western powders for info.

    I tried several other powders and the 5744 is right on for us.
    Just be real careful and keep a heads up as it's real easy to double charge when reloading for lo-velocities. Do your own reloading, DO NOT TRUST ANYONE ELSE to do the charging.
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