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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,
Been kinda lookin at the forums for a while and have to say it looks great! I am 15 years old and am looking into getting my first handi rifle. I plan on hunting deer but mostly coyotes. The 25/06 was my original choice but am considering a 243. Being 15 i am on a -$300 budget. So the handi rifle looks like the gun for me. My dad is also looking into getting one. But my mom and a couple family friends think I should save my money ::) My dad and I can purchase a standard barrel 243 tomorrow. But my mom says to save my money and get a 30/06 from a "better brand". But I don't really want to spend $500 on a rifle too big for coyotes and will only be used one month a year (I also bowhunt). I like the idea that I can switch barrels on a handi rifle so I can buy a 30/06 or .270 barrel later. So not having any experience with these guns what do you think? I know it takes some tinkering but that's fine by me and I plan on learning to reload. Being young and impatient I want a gun soon. Should I wait (which may take a while) or should I go for the handi?

Thanks!
 

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i was in your boat like 6 , 7 years ago and now i think i have owned about every handi they make. have fun.


i'm a big fan of the 243 , but i have a 25-06 too and love them both , i'll tell you now almost everybody is going to say get the 25-06 but please think hard about the 243. a 243 and a 55 grain bullet is a coyotes nightmare , and deer don't like the 100 grainers too much either.


about saving up and buying "the other rifle" there not a darn thing wrong with that i have a few "other rifles" but think about it this way should you not want to keep whatever rifle you get you can and will sell the handi fast and with less loss if any then you would some Winchester of Remington unless you got a very good deal on it.
 

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Hey there! And welcome abord! I have a handi in .243 and it shoots awesome! I was shooting 55 grners out of it right before the breach face cracked. So its now back at the headquarters geting repaired but i would definatly go for the .243! and actualy mitchell was the one who showed me why i should get the .243! ;D (just ask him to post his pics of the acuracy of the rifle he had!) Since then I have taken a nice mulie doe with it and a few prarrie dogs, and as soon as it gets back it will see some coyote action. And like you said, you can always pick up barrels later.

Reloading is a blast! I watched my granddad reload for the family for years. Then I got interested and have been hooked since i was about ten. ;D Its so much fun and i have spent a lot of money on all of the equiptment over the years but its well worth it for the accuracy and self satisfaction of taking game with "your" cartrige. My grandparents soon moved back to the big city(grandma got alshimers) and those days of loading and learning are over but the memories are still there. There is great knowlege to be learned on this site and I encourage you to voice all of your questions as the guys here are the best!

Good luck to you in your future decisions.
Hank.
 

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misterguy, welcome to gbo, i wished i was still 15 years old, the 243 is a great cal and is the 25-06, it you can only buy one rifle now, buy what you want, i would buy the 25-06, it will be a great coyote and deer rifle, i have been hunting deer and coyotes for over 30 years, the 243 will kill both, but i would not deer hunt with a 243, i have a 243 its just small varmint cal rifle for me, for deer i shoot 308,30-06, i like the 30 cals. you are a young guy buy what you what,i am gald to a 15 year old guy on this site most of older guys, misterguy post back.
 

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Welcome aboard. You have found the best place to talk about and get advice about Handi rifles on the web. I think you are doing the right thing, getting a Handi. Your mom sounds like she knows about guns, but is misinformed. The Handi is a quality gun, just different. It has had a bad reputation among the unknowing. It is reliable, fun, single shot (which I prefer), accurate, simple and of course just plain handy (pun intended). The customer service is one of the best in the industry. How much money are you going to have left over for a scope? The 243 comes with a scope mounting rail and hammer spur; no iron sights. You will still need a scope and rings. Christmas present maybe? The Handi has been misaligned by many people, but you will not find that here. The 243 will do every thing you need. Just check out the threads on this board about the deer that have been killed by them. As you get more money, you can add more barrels to expand your Handi's versatility. I say get your rifle now and enjoy it now, you will look back on this some day with many fond memories. I will bet you that you do not part with your Handi and will have it for a long time, but if for some reason you decide to go a different way, you can get most of your money back on it. When you get your your rifle look through the FAQ to get tips on cleaning it before you shoot it and tips on getting the most accuracy from it. I suggest getting the heaviest barrel you can afford (standard barrel would be fine). Do not get the Super Lite, they are a little more finicky. Remember the Handi rifle is a hunting rifle, not a bench rest rifle. It is meant and designed to be carried afield ( for deer, coyotes and other critters).
I hand load and enjoy it very much. To me there is a lot of satisfaction "rolling" your own. You understand bullet performance better, have a wider selection of bullets, can down load for certain situations if you want, and custom tailor loads to your rifle for better accuracy. I just plain get a lot of satisfaction from shooting my own hand loads. Most of the center fire rifles I have; have not had a factory round through them. Good luck to you and keep us informed of your progress and experiences.
 

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The 243 is an awsome coyote caliber. As is the 25-06. I use both for coyote hunting and probably use the 243 the most. Either is fine for deer with the right bullet.
 

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Welcome Aboard! It's nice to know that there are other teens here besides me. This is the best forum ever! Between a 243 and 25-06, I would go with the 25-06. The 25-06 is more suited for deer. You will love this place!
 

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Here iis another facet -- look under medium bore rifles , 308 reduced load vs 243.
a 308 reduced factory loads is close to a 243 but can be used with a full load if you wish. Both loads are fine for deer.
The suggestion of a 243 with a 308 extra barrel in the future can offer you the best of both worlds.
As others have mentioned you will probably keep this rifle. It is kind of like getting a 5-7 hp outboard motor-- you keep it fopr life
 

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fine i'll post one .

here's a target from my 243 at 100 yards, shot this one a long time ago , i haven't played with that rifle for a while and i'm wrong to make her a safe queen but i just can't shoot them all anymore :




i have faith that my 25-06 will shoot good too so don't let this sell you , with the right kind of care 99% of handis can shoot 1/2 MOA

oh and as montveil said don't rule out getting a 308 barrel after , my 308 is the rifle i regret selling the most

pic of the 308:




 

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I thought you sold the .243? Thanks for posting those mitchell! ;D I had never seen the pics of the .308! Kinda makes me want one now!!! LOL! Some fine shooting skills right there! Excelence!!!
Hank
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks guys! Hopefully I'll be picking up a .243 standard barrel tonight! I was hoping to save on money by getting a 25/06 and a 30/06 barrel then necking down the .30 casings. But all they got in stock are 243's. But that's fine by me. I was going to get a bull barrel last week but some guy bought it right in front of me! Oh well. Being 15 and not having a mode of transportation except horseback it wouldn't hurt to cut down weight. Any good cheap factory loads (super X's)? I don't have the dies yet. Thanks again all.

Btw Mitchell, damn fine shooting! ;D
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Oh, I forgot. I do have a bushnell trophy scope and rings. Just wondering if both models come with mounts?
 

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Welcome aboard, misterguy!! ;) Most of the 243 owners that shoot factory ammo have great luck with the inexpensive(relatively) 100gr Federal Power Shoks, 95gr Federal Fusions, or Remington 80gr PSP, those would be the first to try, not necessarily in that order, although the Federals are probably the most popular, and the cost is right, the Power Shoks are $10 at Walmart, or have been recently, both Federal and Remington have $5 rebates going right now on up to two boxes of ammo.

If you haven't already, read the FAQs help on accurizing, break-in and cleaning, they'll help you make the most of your new rifle.

ALL H&R rifle barrels are drilled and tapped for a scope mount, those that have iron sights don't come with a scope rail tho, but in 243 that would only be the Superlight, the standard contour Handi will have a scope rail that uses Weaver style rings, you need high or extra high for the Trophy unless you modifiy the hammer, see the FAQs on that subject too.

Tim
 

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henry1 said:
I thought you sold the .243? Thanks for posting those mitchell! ;D I had never seen the pics of the .308! Kinda makes me want one now!!! LOL! Some fine shooting skills right there! Excelence!!!
Hank
i will NEVER sell this 243. i've had too many lucky shots with it (like a 500yds yote) i've shot that gun so many times it like a part of my body ,and u wouldn't sell my handi now would i ???


thanks for the compliments guys but remember that i learned 80% of my shooting from here, so thank you
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Didn't get it. :( Maybe tomorrow if not monday. Thanks again for the info. I'll give the power shoks a try first.
 

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Don't be disappointed in availability of H&R firearms and parts in Canada, that can be a real issue for you folks up there, unfortunately. :-\

Tim
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yep its a little tricky. The lowest price I can find is $289. Mind you by the time its gone through a transfer dealer and is shipped all over the place its about the same. Luckily theres one in town. I'll let you fellas know how it works out ;).
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Got it! ;D Cost $289. Looks pretty good to me. Have yet to shoot it though. The scope I was going to use has 3/8" dovetail mounts not weavers. :-[ A friend might have some for me though.

I noticed that the fore stock on mine is uneven. On one side there is a space between the wood and the barrel on the other there is none. I've heard that an O ring on the fore stock mount will help free float it. But I was thinking I could just sand the one side carefully to even things out. What do you guys think? Should I just slap an o ring on there or try and sand it even? I'm thinking both. I picked up some 80 gr super x's. I'll let you guys know how it turns out when I get proper mounts.
 

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welcome to gbo. sounds like you might have a nice setup. it takes tweaking and i would shoot the gun after getting it sited in before messing with it. it might not need anything done to it.
 
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