I bought one 2 years ago and really like it. My first kill was a doe @ 130 yards, dropped where she was. I have not really tried shooting out to 200 yards but I think that with practice and bullet placement it is possible.
Just bought a new T\C Encore with a 15 inch .243 Win Barrel Nov. 6., I put a Bushnell 2X32 scope on it and it is an Awesome gun!!
Dropped a big doe from 130 Yards out Saturday Afternoon. This gun is going to be alot fun.
I did something similar, but went with a 7-08. I already had a 223, plus some
bigger calibers. I'm very happy with the 7-08, and think it's worth a
look. It's my antelope/deer gun, but I would use it without any problem for
elk and bear.
If you want a 308 by all means get a 308 you won't be sorry. Great selection of bullets available for reloading, with great accuracy potential. I own both a 7-08 and 308 and find that they both are very accurate (both are factory barrels)
If you want a .308, that is what you should get otherwise you are going to always wonder if you made the right choice if you buy something different.
With that said just this past January 1st I used a 15" T/C Encore Handgun in .243 Winchester to harvest two nice Whitetail Does. The load was a 80gr. Speer Hot Core Spitzer pushed to 2920 FPS with Hodgdon H-4895. This is a 3/4" load out of this barrel.
The first doe was something over 200 yards and dropped in her tracks when I placed a Speer Hot Core Spitzer behind the near side shoulder. The second was slightly farther and I messed up that shot and hit her too far back. She ran off about 100 yards and stopped looking really sick. This allowed me to put a second .243 bullet where the first one should have been. At the shot she dropped in her tracks.
I am not trying to talk you into a .243, but rather relaying my experience with the cartridge in an Encore Handgun. I like the possibility of using the .243 with different weight bullets for critters from Varmints to Deer, but then that is just me and I have always had a soft spot for .243 / 6mm cartridges (I have also used the 6mm-223 and 6mm T/CU in Contender Handguns to harvest Whitetail Deer).
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