Deer hunting .223

pjames777pjames777 Senior MemberPosts: 1,078 Senior Member
Anyone have experience hunting with .223 Remington? Neighbor wants to take his 12yr old and was thinking of using his Remington .223. Recommendations on bullet weight???

Thanks.
Patrick
«13

Replies

  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,950 Senior Member
    60gr and above.

    I've killed them with 50/55/62/64/77gr bullets. The heavier the bullet (of proper design) the more leeway allotted for adequate penetration.
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 19,132 Senior Member
    Bullet's I've carried for deer in my 223:
    64gr Win Power Point
    75Gr Swift Scirroco
    Current load is Nosler Bonded 64gr SP

    I have yet to see a deer while carrying my 223 though :tissue:

    Rem, Hornady, Win all load "Hog" loads that should work for deer and I have heard a lot of good results from the Fed Fusion and Fusion MSR. Though again, I haven't gotten one with my AR yet
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • JermanatorJermanator Senior Member Posts: 15,393 Senior Member
    Those Fusions are essentially (if not actually) Gold Dots. I have seen how they perform and I would trust them on deer with a .223. But as always, shot placement is the key.
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 19,132 Senior Member
    Fairly sure it is just a marketing thing. I shot consecutive groups with rounds from both boxes through the same rifle. I got the same group sizes and same POI.
    I sort of figured that, but haven't bought or shot either of them.
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • LerchessLerchess Senior Member Posts: 550 Senior Member
    Jermanator wrote: »
    Those Fusions are essentially (if not actually) Gold Dots. I have seen how they perform and I would trust them on deer with a .223. But as always, shot placement is the key.

    Nephew got a deer last year with Fusions. They work well.
  • Savage_99Savage_99 Member Posts: 47 Member
    The little 223 was designed to wound the enemy as that takes up more effort by them.

    It's not enough for big game. It's not legal in many places for that reason.
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 7,748 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    Well, crap. No one told the deer that die by the .223.
    Is it ideal? Probably not. Will it it work with the correct bullet and proper shot placement? (Like ALL weapons should be used)
    Yes.

    Having shot many animals from deer sized up to wild steers with my 222 using 50gr psp's I feel reasonably qualified to comment on similar sized projectiles from a 223.

    They will, with proper shot placement drop deer on the spot. Neck or head shots are dead deer standing, shoulder shots will still do the job but on midsized animals and above, may not give you a pass through and subsequently there will be no blood trail to follow. Lung and heart shots are similar if taken behind the shoulder on a quartering angle.

    Just my experience...........
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,962 Senior Member
    I have had good results with the Speer 70 grain semi Spitzer. It being semi Spitzer will stabilize in loser twist rate barrels than full Spitzers. In fact they even stabilize in my Remington 700 .22-250 with a 1:14 twist. My old Remington 788 .223 had a 1:12 twist rate and it shot sub MOA all day with these bullets. And, being 70 grains they penetrate very well. But as has been said here, with any rifle shot placement is key, and more especially with a cartridge like a .223.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,765 Senior Member
    My 7 year old grandson (then) shot two small deer with 55 grain Barnes Triple Shock factory loads. One was a good heart-lung shot at 50 yards, that ran 30 yards and dropped dead. The other was a single lung shot that did a lot of damage, and the deer was found about 70 yards away. I load 70 grain Barnes TSX for my 20" heavy barrel AR, but have not fired it at an animal, but it groups well.
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 19,132 Senior Member
    If the Rem is a 1:12", the 0.800" Nosler 64gr Bonded SHOULD stabilize, according to Berger's stability calculator.

    My slowest twist 223 is still a 1:9, so I don't know this from first hand experience
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,383 Senior Member
    Savage_99 wrote: »
    The little 223 was designed to wound the enemy as that takes up more effort by them.

    It's not enough for big game. It's not legal in many places for that reason.

    I don't know how that first sentence came from. It was designed to allow troops to carry a lot more ammo in a lighter-weight weapon. Never in history that I know of has any government designed a firearm specifically to wound people.

    It's OK for deer if you use the proper bullets for it.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • Farm Boy DeuceFarm Boy Deuce Senior Member Posts: 6,083 Senior Member
    knitepoet wrote: »
    If the Rem is a 1:12", the 0.800" Nosler 64gr Bonded SHOULD stabilize, according to Berger's stability calculator.

    My slowest twist 223 is still a 1:9, so I don't know this from first hand experience

    I have only shot Federal Fusion through one rifle with a 1:12 barrel.

    photo6_zps9c983056.jpg

    That is a .22 short case next to the group. Fired from my H&R Handi Rifle.
    I am afraid we forget sometime that the basic and simple things brings us the most pleasure.
    Dad 5-31-13
  • JerryBobCoJerryBobCo Senior Member Posts: 6,659 Senior Member
    Gene L wrote: »
    I don't know how that first sentence came from. It was designed to allow troops to carry a lot more ammo in a lighter-weight weapon. Never in history that I know of has any government designed a firearm specifically to wound people.

    I've heard both reasons given for the army switching from the .308 to the .223. The idea was that it took two enemy combatants out if one was injured. The injured guy and someone to take care of or carry him. It makes sense to me, assuming the enemy cares about fallen comrades.
    Jerry

    Gun control laws make about as much sense as taking ex-lax to cure a cough.
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 15,273 Senior Member
    Savage_99 wrote: »
    It's not enough for big game. It's not legal in many places for that reason.

    If you had been around here a bit longer, you would have seen that we, as a group, have pretty much debunked the whole "It's not enough for big game" argument. Many of those states in which the .223 has been illegal for deer hunting are changing their tunes due to advances in bullet design and changing the regulations to read "Any centerfire rifle"...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • ZeeZee Senior Member Posts: 20,950 Senior Member
    Savage_99 wrote: »
    The little 223 was designed to wound the enemy as that takes up more effort by them.

    It's not enough for big game. It's not legal in many places for that reason.

    37747511_zps2srzyhx0.jpg
    "To Hell with efficiency, it's performance we want!" - Elmer Keith
  • JasonMPDJasonMPD Senior Member Posts: 6,214 Senior Member
    Savage_99 wrote: »
    The little 223 was designed to wound the enemy as that takes up more effort by them.

    It's not enough for big game. It's not legal in many places for that reason.

    Huh?

    It was designed to bolster ammo capacity and primarily to accommodate the castrated AR-10 when it was downsized to the AR-15.

    It's wound potential was desired in practice, but not of original design.
    “There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,252 Senior Member
    Wouldn't anything that shoots FMJ ammo be more on the "wounding" end of the spectrum than the "killing" end? Isn't that part of the reason that FMJ is banned for MOST hunting situations? Saying a military round was "designed for wounding over killing" is kind of disingenuous when one considers the bullet profiles they're limited to.
    Overkill is underrated.
  • JasonMPDJasonMPD Senior Member Posts: 6,214 Senior Member
    Wouldn't anything that shoots FMJ ammo be more on the "wounding" end of the spectrum than the "killing" end? Isn't that part of the reason that FMJ is banned for MOST hunting situations? Saying a military round was "designed for wounding over killing" is kind of disingenuous when one considers the bullet profiles they're limited to.

    Shot placement notwithstanding, probably.

    As far as mil-theory goes, I imagine wounded is acceptable and dead is preferable. A wounded soldier occupies other soldier's attentions.

    FMJ bullets were never hunting bullets anyways.
    “There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers
  • JerryBobCoJerryBobCo Senior Member Posts: 6,659 Senior Member
    Jayhawker wrote: »
    If you had been around here a bit longer, you would have seen that we, as a group, have pretty much debunked the whole "It's not enough for big game" argument. Many of those states in which the .223 has been illegal for deer hunting are changing their tunes due to advances in bullet design and changing the regulations to read "Any centerfire rifle"...

    I'll bet that states with game larger than deer will not allow 22 caliber centerfire rifles, or at least restrict them to certain game animals. I wouldn't have a problem hunting Texas whitetails with a .222 or .223, but would want to hunt country where close shots are the norm. I would not want to use it on a hunt of a life time for big northern whitetails or mule deer, and anything larger.
    Jerry

    Gun control laws make about as much sense as taking ex-lax to cure a cough.
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,252 Senior Member
    JasonMPD wrote: »
    Shot placement notwithstanding, probably.Well, yeah...

    As far as mil-theory goes, I imagine wounded is acceptable and dead is preferable. A wounded soldier occupies other soldier's attentions.Probably, but my point was that rounds use, per the Geneva accords, aren't really designed to be hunting rounds or even that great at producing trauma. They do, but that's incidental to the design. The 5.56 was designed as a military round, first, then adopted to hunting. Kinda like the '06 and the .308.

    FMJ bullets were never hunting bullets anyways.Well, yeah.
    .
    Overkill is underrated.
  • JermanatorJermanator Senior Member Posts: 15,393 Senior Member
    JerryBobCo wrote: »
    I'll bet that states with game larger than deer will not allow 22 caliber centerfire rifles, or at least restrict them to certain game animals.
    In Michigan, it is ANY centerfire cartridge .22 and up for deer, and .243+ for elk and bear.
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 19,132 Senior Member
    Wambli Ska wrote: »
    64 Gr. Gold Dots out of mine shot about 4" groups at best.
    I'm pretty sure they are longer than the noslers
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,252 Senior Member
    Jermanator wrote: »
    In Michigan, it is ANY centerfire cartridge .22 and up for deer, and .243+ for elk and bear.
    I can see it being adequate for elk, but bear? How big do your bear get?
    Overkill is underrated.
  • JermanatorJermanator Senior Member Posts: 15,393 Senior Member
    How big do your bear get?
    300+ isn't uncommom but average is 150 pounds.
  • JasonMPDJasonMPD Senior Member Posts: 6,214 Senior Member
    Shot placement notwithstanding, probably.Well, yeah...

    As far as mil-theory goes, I imagine wounded is acceptable and dead is preferable. A wounded soldier occupies other soldier's attentions.Probably, but my point was that rounds use, per the Geneva accords, aren't really designed to be hunting rounds or even that great at producing trauma. They do, but that's incidental to the design. The 5.56 was designed as a military round, first, then adopted to hunting. Kinda like the '06 and the .308.

    FMJ bullets were never hunting bullets anyways.Well, yeah.

    I agree.
    “There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.” – Will Rogers
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,962 Senior Member
    JerryBobCo wrote: »
    I'll bet that states with game larger than deer will not allow 22 caliber centerfire rifles, or at least restrict them to certain game animals. I wouldn't have a problem hunting Texas whitetails with a .222 or .223, but would want to hunt country where close shots are the norm. I would not want to use it on a hunt of a life time for big northern whitetails or mule deer, and anything larger.

    Me neither. And I will say one more thing. With such a small bullet like a .22 Centerfire, I reason it like a .410 Shotgun. It's more for an experienced shooter. To kill consistently it requires more precise shot placement. In my opinion it's not the best for a first time hunter. I like something on the order of a .30-30 for a beginner. It has soft recoil but still packs plenty of punch. And even a 150 grain flat nose it will kill DRT within reasonable ranges.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,383 Senior Member
    JerryBobCo wrote: »
    I've heard both reasons given for the army switching from the .308 to the .223. The idea was that it took two enemy combatants out if one was injured. The injured guy and someone to take care of or carry him. It makes sense to me, assuming the enemy cares about fallen comrades.

    When the .223 was adopted, the enemy didn't escort their wounded off, we did. I takes more than two soldiers to carry off and bury a dead guy. Everyone followed the US's lead and went down to .223 caliber bullets. The .308 was a mistake; a fine round but heavy and I think retrograde of the .30-06 Garand. Shows you how conservative (I don't mean politically) the military is...or was. We still carried M 60 machine guns, maybe the worst MG since the Chauchat.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • FreezerFreezer Senior Member Posts: 1,516 Senior Member
    I would not encourage anyone to give a kid a .223 as their first deer rifle. Shot placement is too critical. A kid without a lot of practice time and buck fever is not a good receipt for success. Additionally some folks want to hand a small framed kid a rifle that's too big (their rifle) and designed for an adult. With a bad stock fit the kid will not shoot it well so how under a stress condition can they place a critical shot well. This whole subject is a bad idea. .223 when used for large game is an experts cartridge.

    Encourage your friend to get the kid a gun that fits in a more suitable cartridge. .243 (and I don't care for that choice) would be the minimum starting point with 257 Roberts, 260 Rem. 7-08 etc being far better rounds.

    We should not be teaching kids to kill. We should be teaching them to be ethical hunters with the skills and tools to take game efficiently and humanely.

    JMHO
    I like Elmer Keith; I married his daughter :wink:
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