Maybe it was luck but the .243's breakup in the chest cavity put them down.I'm thinking of the energy being released inside the deer instead of beyond the deer after exit.
Don't sell the 243 short. It can be a very effective round. The largest bull elk I ever mounted for a client while I was a taxidermist for 20 years, was killed by a 16 year old with a .243. He was using Barnes handloads, and the elk went down with one shot throught the heart!
I need to qualify my ideas about taking the frontal chest shot.You need a bullet that fragments inside the deer.Many of the heavier calibers/bullet designs would make it through the deer lengthwise and create a mess.I know there are opposing ideas about whether a bullet should pass through and create a large exit wound for bleed out and tracking.Or should it expend all its energy inside the deer with many fragments doing alot of damage.I have hunted with a large group for many years and have helped in attempts to recover deer that had pass through wounds from bullets that did not open up enough in thin skinned deer.
Hunting Man, I saw that you bought a model 70 in .243.Try some Remington 100 grain corelokts in it.If they are accurate in it,take it deerhunting and if you put it in the heart/lung area you won't be sorry.
I know what onehorse is saying but lets keep the 243 where it belongs in deer and heavy varmit hunting. Proper shot placement is always the key no matter what caliber your are using.
Just to be clear, I'm not advocating the .243 for any game even close to the size of an elk. In fact, while I was a taxidermist, a hunter brought me a black bear that he had killed with a .22, and I'd hardly call that a bear round. I think luck had a lot to do with both of these kills.
For 3212: As for wanting bullets to fragment, that's a big mistake!!! If you intentionally used bullets that would fragment so they would work for frontal shots, what happens when you get a shot that hits bone? I just don't understand the logic to this. Effective big game bullets stay together and expand. Even in the scenario you presented, it's more desirable any day to have a a dead deer on the ground (even IF the field dressing MIGHT be a little messy), than a wounded deer (with bullet fragments inside) running off and dying a slow wasted death. Fragmenting bullets are for varmints - big game animals deserve better.
Onehorse, I knew what you were saying and completely agree 100%! I haven't shot tho model 70 yet, too much going on right now but later this summer I will hit the range with it. The rifle came with a couple of boxes of shells and I'll sight in with them and then decide what to use. Onehorse the rifle came with a great custom made for the model 70 like new leather scabbard, anyone you know in need of one it's a great workmanship piece made in the 60's looks brand new. I don't know much about them but the top 1/3 can be removed as it's all hooked together with straps. Fleese lined too. I have no use for it and have no idea as to value.
This has been my experience with the Remington 100 grain corelokts.If I don't hit a rib on the entrance I do get an exit wound about double the size of the bullet.If I do hit a rib or shoulder,which usually happens, I get bone and bullet fragments all over the chest cavity and the deer is going nowhere.I do not use bullets specifically designed to fragment.