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Discussion Starter #1
Somewhere along the way I have gotten old. My rifles all seem heavier than they used to. I have a Weatherby Vanguard 243 that I painted white for hunting in the snow. With scope it is pushing 9 lbs loaded. I am looking for a lightweight 243 bolt action to carry while tracking coyotes.

I have found three comparably priced rifles and would like to hear your opinions on the three.

1st is a Weatherby vanguard compact. It comes with a 13.5 inch length of pull and a 20 inch lightweight barrel. Sub MOA is the Weatherby promise with this rifle.

2nd is a Remington model 7 predator. It too has a 20 inch barrel and is a bit lighter than the Weatherby.

3rd is a Mossberg Patriot. This one I know the least about. It is $100 less money than the other two but the one that I looked at showed promise.

All three are brand new guns......which would you guys recommend...pros and cons?

Thanks in advance.
 

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I love the Model Seven Predator and have owned them in .17 Fireballs, .204 Ruger and .223. BUT they are NOT really light weight guns. If you want light weight get a standard old style Model Seven with 18.5" barrel. They should come in around 6.25 pounds bare.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I love the Model Seven Predator and have owned them in .17 Fireballs, .204 Ruger and .223. BUT they are NOT really light weight guns. If you want light weight get a standard old style Model Seven with 18.5" barrel. They should come in around 6.25 pounds bare.
I have also looked at a Kimber model 84. They almost seem frail. I am leaning toward the model 7 right now. I once owned a Remington 700 LVS in 221 fireball. It shot 40 grain V-maxes into a tiny group. It was great on prairie dogs but didn't anchor coyotes with authority. A 58 grain V-max out of my 24 inch Weatherby 243 running 3800 fps knocks the snot out of them. I will loose around 150 fps going to a 20 inch barrel but I have never met a coyote that would know the difference.

I already have a Zeiss straight 6X (fine cross hairs) that I will put on the new 243.

I used to buy a gun on a whim however old age requires that I mull it over for a day or two.

Thanks for your advice!
 

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I think the Model 7 is the highest quality rifle of those three choices. Also has a faster 1:9.125 twist rate which you will appreciate if you ever shoot any bullets heavier than 85 gr. More options for aftermarket stocks, butt pads, triggers, scope bases, etc.

If you want a low cost- light weight rifle that shoots great out of the box you should check out the Ruger American.
 

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Ive got a 308 model 7 and had a 708. The 308 shoots fair (1.5-2) at a 100 yards. The 708 never shot a group under 2 inch. Weatherby makes a full sized lightweight vanguard now. I think id look at that. Years ago I was all about short barreled bolt guns. Found that in the real world even when trapesing around in the swamp even a 24 inch barrel is really not a disadvantage and probably worth the weight for the velocity gains. I also have a Kimber montana 308 that's both extreamly light and has a 22in barrel. Problem is its a very finiky gun and is at best a 1.5 inch gun (with one load) but basically a 2moa or more gun. If you do some research on kimbers youll find lots of accuracy complaints. For what I use it for 2 inch is fine but its not a gun id want to take out when the shots can get around 300 or more yards. Ill say this. Ive had 4 wthby vanguards and my buddy has 2. All shoot moa or better. He also has two Mossberg patriots with the flutted barrels. They are a cheap entry level gun that sure doesn't stack up to a vanguard or 700 in fit and finish. They have a cheap plastic mag that I don't care for but so does a ruger American. But the two he has shoot fantastic. One in 243 and one in 308. I might even be convinced to roll the dice on one myself. Another choice that's a good one and is cheap too is the ruger American I mentioned. They have the ranch model with a short barrel. I have one in 300 bo and its a SHOOTER. Its also fairly light and handy.
 

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Personally i think it would be hard to beat the 788 Remington for a lightweight walk around coyote rifle. Still some good ones around and prices aren't TOO far out of sight!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
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Ruger American can save some weight...

...This one can save some money, but not necessarily weight;

https://www.academy.com/shop/pdp/thompson-center-compass™-243-win-bolt-action-rifle

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I am familiar with that platform IG. They one up the Ruger American in my opinion. They are also heavier. I have one in 7mm-08 and had one in 243 but my 17 year old grandson in Indiana took that one home with him shortly after I got it zeroed. He's been sending me lots of pictures of dead woodchucks that it has accounted for.

Here is my scenario! In Iowa the countryside is chopped up into square miles with a road going north/ south and one going east/ west every mile. After a fresh snow I find a set of tracks crossing a gravel or dirt road going into a square mile section. I then drive all of the way around that section to see if the tracks go on through to the next section. If they do then I repeat until I know in what section the coyote stopped for the day. I then dress up in my whites. Grab my white rifle...scope, bipod sling and all are white. I sling the rifle on my shoulder and grab my Mossberg Turkey gun which is also painted white. It is loaded with 3 inch shells with BB shot. I also have a pair of white 10x binos that hang around my neck. Often a coyote will walk into the wind but not always(ones that have played the game before won't) so I will get at a vantage point above the tracks and use the 10x binoculars to track him from afar. If those tracks go into a weed patch and don't come out then the rifle stays on the sling and I approach at a snail's pace with the 12 gauge at the ready. Just as often the coyote will find a spot out of the wind where he can lay out in the open and grab some sun. In which case the 12 gauge my get left behind and I will belly crawl close enough to get a shot with the rifle.

I might be on that same coyote most of the day. If I find his nest and he has gotten up and moved then I have to rethink the situation. Did he run from his resting spot or just get up and walk away. If he ran then I'm probably done with that one for the day but if he walked off then it's still more of the same.

So you can see why the need for a light rifle. I try to move as little as possible when doing a stalk and moving that heavy vanguard from one shoulder to the other doesn't work. I have to make sure that the binoculars don't clunk against the slung rifle etc.. Once in a while I even have a pair of snowshoes on my back. They don't weigh anything but are one more thing to clank together and wake up a coyote. One little mistake 4 hours into a stalk can put the coyote on the run and leave me kicking myself in the butt.
 

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Personally i think it would be hard to beat the 788 Remington for a lightweight walk around coyote rifle. Still some good ones around and prices aren't TOO far out of sight!
They made a 788 carbine in .243 also. Hard to beat a 788!!!!!!!!!!!
 

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Gpa;


I like your technique of hunting those dogs. I used to hunt deer in a similar manner where I lived about 40 years ago. Would simply walk through the woods in a nonchalant manner, until I scared some deer out.

Like clockwork, they would head for a stand of very thick hemlocks..then I would go low and huntthe hemlocks..looking for legs under the lowest branches.

Just out of curiosity..with .223 ammo more available and much less expensive that many other rounds, is a .243 necessary for coyotes?

Or is it a case of it being a rifle used for bigger game also ?

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I dont own one but I have picked one up and fondled it at a gun shop , a tikka superlite might be worth your while to take a look at .
 

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Discussion Starter #12
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Gpa;


I like your technique of hunting those dogs. I used to hunt deer in a similar manner where I lived about 40 years ago. Would simply walk through the woods in a nonchalant manner, until I scared some deer out.

Like clockwork, they would head for a stand of very thick hemlocks..then I would go low and huntthe hemlocks..looking for legs under the lowest branches.

Just out of curiosity..with .223 ammo more available and much less expensive that many other rounds, is a .243 necessary for coyotes?

Or is it a case of it being a rifle used for bigger game also ?

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I guess it's a matter of it's what I have been shooting since the 70s. Back in 1976 I bought a Ruger 77 in 243 and hunted fox, coyote and deer with it. I have shot a lot of coyotes over the years that were on the dead run. So once I got used to one round....knowing how far to lead and how far to hold over etc it just never made any sense to use anything else and for the most part I haven't. I have wandered for short periods of time but always return to the 243 Winchester.

There have been a lot of coyotes killed with lesser rounds, the 223 being one of them. Coyotes die relatively easy and a 223 with any 55 grain or larger bullet will do the job out to 300 yards or so if the coyote isn't all jacked up on adrenaline. I do have a Howa Ranchland in 223 with a 20 inch barrel. I took off the Hogue stock and replaced it with a stock off a Weatherby Vanguard. The Hogue stocks are just too straight for my liking. I have it zeroed in with 40 grain VMaxes on top of a stiff load of CFE223 powder. They run 3600 fps and are real hard on crows, wood chucks and the like, however I shot a coyote with it running straight away at almost 300 yards and hit him right on the top side of where his tail hooks on. He rolled end over end and then got back up and kept on going. I tracked him for a couple of miles and found him hiding under a blowdown on a fence line. I had to shoot him two more times before he gave it up. He was a big old alpha male and had his adrenaline in high gear when I hit him the first shot. A 55 grain soft point in that 223 probably would have anchored him. I know for sure that a 243 would have been one and done.

Most of the guys around here use 22-250, 220 Swift, 243, 6mm even a few use a 25-06. I know one particular old timer that has killed a lot of coyotes using a 264 Win mag. The guys that I know that use 223s are the night hunters with the night vision scopes. They call them long after the sun has gone down. They sit 2 or 3 guys with night vision scopes on their AR15s in in draws, fence lines or waterways between the caller and the supposed location of the coyotes. They intercept them on the way to the call. They have pretty good success too.

As for me at this point in my life, I go it alone. I like to beat that coyote one on one. I killed 13 the winter before last but only 4 last winter as we had knee deep snow all winter and most of the winter it had a very noisey crust on the top. Coyotes could hear me coming from a half mile away and there wasn't a thing that I could do about it.

I have to go to Indiana for a few days to watch my grandson compete for the Indiana select Hockey team in a National AAU tournament. Then the rest of the winter is mine to screw with the coyotes heads while in return they screw with mine.
 

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I'm kind or surprised not to see any Savage rifles in the lineup. A buddy has a Model 11 in .308 that just is a tad over 6 lbs. and shoots factory ammo into an inch at 100...
 

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Tikka T3 Lite! Very accurate, very lightweight. A Remington 788 is Not a lightweight rifle. A great rifle, yes. I've owned a dozen of them and the weight is the only complaint I ever had.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
 

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I have a Winchester Featherweight in 243. Also have a Remington Model 7 in 308. These are the lightest rifles I own.
 

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Have you taken your rifle stock off and weighed it without the stock? Could be you could order a lighter composite stock, maybe cut a lb off. I have a Ruger 77 in 308 with a skelotonized stock and scope that weighs less than 7 lbs. With my reloads I can hit a dime group at 100 yards. Taken 3 deer with it with one shot each.
 

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Tikka T3 Lite! Very accurate, very lightweight. A Remington 788 is Not a lightweight rifle. A great rifle, yes. I've owned a dozen of them and the weight is the only complaint I ever had.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
You are correct on the 788, almost 8#. Mine sure don't seem that heavy, but that's the weight a Google search turned up.
 

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I guess it's a matter of it's what I have been shooting since the 70s. Back in 1976 I bought a Ruger 77 in 243 and hunted fox, coyote and deer with it. I have shot a lot of coyotes over the years that were on the dead run. So once I got used to one round....knowing how far to lead and how far to hold over etc it just never made any sense to use anything else and for the most part I haven't. I have wandered for short periods of time but always return to the 243 Winchester.

There have been a lot of coyotes killed with lesser rounds, the 223 being one of them. Coyotes die relatively easy and a 223 with any 55 grain or larger bullet will do the job out to 300 yards or so if the coyote isn't all jacked up on adrenaline. I do have a Howa Ranchland in 223 with a 20 inch barrel. I took off the Hogue stock and replaced it with a stock off a Weatherby Vanguard. The Hogue stocks are just too straight for my liking. I have it zeroed in with 40 grain VMaxes on top of a stiff load of CFE223 powder. They run 3600 fps and are real hard on crows, wood chucks and the like, however I shot a coyote with it running straight away at almost 300 yards and hit him right on the top side of where his tail hooks on. He rolled end over end and then got back up and kept on going. I tracked him for a couple of miles and found him hiding under a blowdown on a fence line. I had to shoot him two more times before he gave it up. He was a big old alpha male and had his adrenaline in high gear when I hit him the first shot. A 55 grain soft point in that 223 probably would have anchored him. I know for sure that a 243 would have been one and done.

Most of the guys around here use 22-250, 220 Swift, 243, 6mm even a few use a 25-06. I know one particular old timer that has killed a lot of coyotes using a 264 Win mag. The guys that I know that use 223s are the night hunters with the night vision scopes. They call them long after the sun has gone down. They sit 2 or 3 guys with night vision scopes on their AR15s in in draws, fence lines or waterways between the caller and the supposed location of the coyotes. They intercept them on the way to the call. They have pretty good success too.

As for me at this point in my life, I go it alone. I like to beat that coyote one on one. I killed 13 the winter before last but only 4 last winter as we had knee deep snow all winter and most of the winter it had a very noisey crust on the top. Coyotes could hear me coming from a half mile away and there wasn't a thing that I could do about it.

I have to go to Indiana for a few days to watch my grandson compete for the Indiana select Hockey team in a National AAU tournament. Then the rest of the winter is mine to screw with the coyotes heads while in return they screw with mine.
Gotcha.. Yes the 243 is a great round to cover everything up to deer and black bear, and if it works well for you, it is obvious why you want to keep it !

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Discussion Starter #19
Dilemma solved!

I bought a new in the box Howa lightweight barreled action in 243 for $200. I also bought a short action Weatherby Vanguard stock from Ebay. I gave $75 for the stock. The stock will no doubt have a larger barrel channel...I couldn't tell from the pictures but suspect it to be for the standard barrel dimensions rather than the lightweight. That won't be a problem as I will glass bed it anyway. I'll leave the barrel free floated but fill up any gap left from difference in contour. I also discovered that the Zeiss 6X scope the I envisioned as being available for this gun is already on my 7mm-08 and zeroed. So I will leave that as is and use a new Bushnell 3x9 "Prime" scope on the new project. Then of course the whole thing will get squirted predominantly flat white with bits of of other colors. I have found the Rustoleum 2x coverage paint to be very tough.

If I can figure out the how of it then I'll post a picture when I get it ready for the hunt! I'll have about $450 into this project counting paint and all. You might laugh but white slings are hard to come by so I make my own. They are non adjustable so I just make them the length needed to be slung over my shoulder with my winter duds on and call it good. They are nothing more than braided bed sheets. See I told you that you might laugh. Hey if they they are strong enough to choke the life out of Jeffy Epstein then they oughtsta hold my gun on my shoulder....don'tcha think? I've been using them for years...so far so good. A cloth diaper will work too and actually better than a bed sheet..., however there haven't been any cloth diapers in close proximity for the better part of 40 years. I'm not sure that they even make them anymore. Dish towels work too but my wife buys the pretty ones with flowers and birds and crap all over them and that won't fly.

Time to shut up and go spread salt on the ice lest one of the libtard teachers in high heels goes upside down and lands on her head............
 
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