243 WSSM Rock Chuck Hunting with Video in 2010

243 WSSM Model 1885 Rock Chuck Hunting
View of my 243 WSSM Model 1885 from my lap while rock chuck hunting.

Dallen and I took a hike to hunt rock chucks this past week. We went into a area that usually has abundant numbers of chucks however this year we only found a handful of chucks.  We had given the area a break from hunting the previous year so maybe some else had been in the area the past two years. Who knows. We did find a few rock chucks and were able to have some fun.

Dallen was packing his Browning A-Bolt Stainless Stalker in 223 Rem. and was shooting a 50g V-Max handload clocking right at 3,000 fps. I was packing my Winchester Model 1885 in 243 WSSM shooting factory 55g Ballistic Tips, clocking in at 4240 fps, with this 28" long barreled rifle.

Both of us are shooting from a sitting position. I am using a set of Stoney Point Shooting Stix and Dallen has a large Browning Bi-Pod on his rifle. He prefers Shooting Stix but we think his set got left on the mountain when we shot our cow elk this past winter.

I let Dallen take the first crack, at the first chuck. It was a small chuck, at 246 yards. It takes him three shots to connect on this rock chuck. His first two shots are near misses. I have to give him credit as he is only using a 3-9x Bushnell Elite 3200 rifle scope and shooting with a bi-pod from a sitting position. After his first two shots I decide to take a "warm up" shot myself and just skim the top of it's back for a miss... and I have no excuse, I just missed. You will notice a considerable difference in the speed of the bullet and the impact on the rock on the third shot in this video. When I have my rifle down to reload Dallen center punches the chuck on his third shot.


This rock chuck is at 244 yards and I send him a flying with a center punch from my 243 WSSM Model 1885, using a 55g Ballistic Tip, having a 4240 fps muzzle velocity.

Dallen with his Browning A-Bolt Stainless Stalker 223 Rem. Me with my 243 WSSM Model 1885 out Rock Chuck Hunting
Dallen with the thumbs-up after he shoots his first rock chuck for the year. Dallen turns the camera on Dad.

We didn't get to shoot very much this trip out but we had a lot of fun nonetheless. The trip also provided some much needed exercise. I have put a few pounds on this past winter. I need to get in a little better shape and take several more trips like this before summer is over. Dallen and I had a great time. I really enjoy the talks we have when we are out hunting together. He's growing up on me.

DIY Homemade Electronic Coyote Predator Caller

Do-It-Yourself Homemade Electronic Coyote Predator Caller
Do-It-Yourself Homemade Electronic Coyote/Predator Caller

Being the Do-It-Yourself guy I am, I thought a homemade coyote caller would be a lot cheaper than a commercial electronic call and a fun project for me to tinker around with.

I started out using an old Browning flashlight housing. I got an inexpensive mp3 player and the Speco SPC-5P speaker from eBay and a old double male audio cable I had kicking around the house. The rest of the parts needed I ordered from Radio Shack.

The battery pack holds eight batteries so to achieve 9 volts (6 times 1.5v AA batteries equals 9v) I placed a piece of copper tubing across one of the two AA battery slots. Having this larger pack of batteries lasts a lot longer than just a single 9v battery.

I then cut the bottom of the mini amplifier off so that it would fit inside the flashlight case and wired it as shown in the diagram.

Homemade Electronic Coyote Call Wiring Diagram Using audio editing software I changed the meta tags of all my predator MP3 sounds. I changed the "artist" tag to different animal sounds. In this way I could browse by artist and bring up all the rabbit or coyote sounds etc. I set the MP3 player to repeat so I can pause and play the same sound over and over.

Another thing I like to do with my MP3 files is make 20-30 minute calling scenario MP3 files. I do this by bringing various sounds into my audio editing software. For instance I will have two minutes of silence at the beginning, then I will have a series of mouse squeaks and then a minute or so pause. Then some louder rabbit squalls and then a couple of series of the rabbit squalls over a ten minute window. Towards the end I will often throw in a coyote challenge bark/howl and then a distress ki-yi bark. You can also mix in bird sounds all along the way like a crow or a magpie. I think you get the idea. You can have fun and make all sorts of various predator calling sequences.


Two coyotes, Model 1885, 243 WSSM, Homemade Electronic Coyote Caller
A pair of coyotes taken with my homemade electronic caller. You can read more about this hunt in my 243 WSSM Model 1885 Coyote Double journal entry.

When I have these long pre-made audio sequences I can set my call out in front of me however far I want. I now have two minutes to get back into position before the mouse squeaking starts. Then I sit back and enjoy the show.

Basic parts list that I used:

  • MP3 Player
  • Housing, from a flashlight case or gym bag etc.
  • Speco SPC-5P Speaker
  • 8 "AA" Battery Holder (Radio Shack, Catalog #270-407)
  • Red LED with Holder (Radio Shack, Catalog #276-084), Optional but nice to know when it is on.
  • Fully Insulated 9V Battery Snap Connectors (Radio Shack, Catalog #270-325)
  • SPST 3-Amp "Soft-Feel" Push On-Push Off Switch (Radio Shack, Catalog #275-1565)
  • 3.5mm male to male audio extension cable


Mini Amplifier used for Do-It-Yourself Homemade Electronic Coyote Predator Caller Mini Amplifier with bottom cut off used for Do-It-Yourself Homemade Electronic Coyote Predator Caller
 Mini Amp before I cut the bottom off.  Mini Amp with bottom battery compartment removed.
Do-It-Yourself Homemade Electronic Coyote Predator Caller Inside Do-It-Yourself Homemade Electronic Coyote Predator Caller
Battery pack, Mini Amp, and Speaker. View inside the main compartment compartment.
Speaker with two screws holding it on Electronic Coyote Predator Caller Do-It-Yourself Homemade Electronic Coyote Predator Caller
I drilled two holes through the speaker and used screws to hold the speaker in place. View of the outside before wrapping it in a removable camouflage wrap.


Coyote Hunts with 243 WSSM Rifles

One of my favorites things to do is coyote hunt. With four kids and the demands of the family I haven't been able to get out as much as I would like. I end up saving all my kitchen passes to go deer and elk hunting.

Here are a few of the coyotes I have taken the past couple of years with my 243 WSSM rifles.

Coyote Oklahoma 2001 Remington BDL 25-06 Rem.
This coyote was my 3rd or fourth coyote I had ever taken.
  • 2001
  • 25-06 Rem. Remington BDL 
  • 100g Nosler Partition
  • 191 Yards
243 WSSM Coyotes Oklahoma 2005
My first double. I have had the barrel fluted on this rifle since this photo was taken.
  • 2005
  • 243 WSSM
  • Browning A-Bolt Stainless Varmint Laminate, 24" barrel
  • 75g Hornady V-Max Handload
  • 3440 fps
  • 50 yards and 132 yards
 243 WSSM Coyote Model 1885 2006
 Hunting with my good friend Clint. This coyote was disemboweled.
  • 2005
  • 243 WSSM
  • Winchester Model 1885, 28" barrel
  • Bushnell Elite 4200 4-16x
  • 75g Hornady V-Max Handload
  • 158 yards
 243 WSSM Coyote A-Bolt 2006
  Hunting with my good friend Clint.
  • 2006
  • 243 WSSM
  • Browning A-Bolt Stainless Hunter Laminate, 22" barrel
  • Bushnell Elite 3200 3-10x SA
  • 55g Nosler Ballistic Tip factory load
  • 4080 fps
  • 280 yards

During the summer of 2010 I took a couple more coyotes with my Winchester Model 1885 243 WSSM rifle. You can read about this in my 243 WSSM Model 1885 Coyote Double journal entry.

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