.243 WIN Ammunition Testing

After my results with the Black Hills ammo from my AR test, I thought it might be worth it to try some of their take on my favorite bullet, the 95 gr. Nosler. I’ve used this bullet to take a literal ton of deer meat in the last 10 years and I have yet to have an animal end up more than 25 yards from the point of impact. In most cases, they drop right on the spot. For years, I’ve shot the Winchester Supreme Ballistic Silvertip with a lot of success. After shooting the Black Hills ammo in my AR, curiosity got the best of me and I decided to try their 95 gr. Nosler bullet. I picked up two boxes from Ammo to go for $25.95/20 rounds. For reference, the Winchester Ammo is $31.99/20 rounds from Midway. Here’s how the test went…

As always, my targets are ¼” grid paper with a 1.25” dot as the aiming point. My shots were taken at 100 yards indoors off a solid rest.

First up is my control. I shot three shots using the tried and true Winchester ammo. With three shots, I saw an average group radius of .332 inches. Definitely not bad and most certainly “minute of vital zone.”

For the Black Hills ammo, I let my barrel cool and cleaned the bore completely. Then I fired two strings of three shots at the target. I didn’t let the barrel cool in between shots. The bullets followed the path from left to right that you see in the target with each successive shot. Unlike my AR, which can drill ragged holes after a 20 round string, my Ruger is WAY susceptible to heat.

Here is the data for the average group radius as I increased the shot count.

3 shots .184 inches

4 shots .258 inches

5 shots .403 inches

6 shots  .496 inches

As I’m sure you can guess, I’m switching over to the Black Hills ammo. Less expensive and MUCH better accuracy. If you have something that has worked better for you out of a .243 WIN gun with a 22″ barrel and 1:9 twist, let me know. I’ll happily test it out.