Hornady ELD-X 103grn .243


Been doing some research into heads for homeloading my 20" varmint tikka t3 in 243 and came across Hornady ELD-X 103grn which have a high bc and read up very well. Has anyone tried them? My rifle is a 1:10 twist and I was wondering if they would stabilise ok? Also, can anyone suggest load data for vhit160 and these heads please?

Link below, thank you for your time.

6mm .243 103 gr ELD-X® - Hornady Manufacturing, Inc


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Ideally you’d have a 1:8 or 1:9 imho, that’s a long heavy for caliber bullet and a short barrel.
i’d ask for a tester pack, check with a chrony, and inspect paper out to 250yds if they are tumbling
Sound advice, thank you. Can you recommend a good deer legal head for my rifle that could also double as a mid range corvid/fox round? I know it's a fairly short barrel but like the idea of a "general purpose" round that's deer legal.


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Unless big deer needing 100g, I’d say 87g Hornady
bthp, and on deer, keep then poa behind the shoulder or base of neck as at closer ranges they ‘can’ bruise meat a bit

that said, when i exclusively shot 243, I loved the 85g nosler partition, but it’s not cheap.
Cheers buddy, I will look into them. What calibre have you moved onto? My eventual plan after shooting the 243 out is to rebarrel in .260 remington.


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any 80 to 100 gr BULLET will work but buy a chronograph to make sure you reach the correct foot pounds of energy for deer in the uk with your reloaded rounds/ammo.85gr sierra will work either the hpbt or the s.p. you will require around 3000 fps to be legal.


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Many! But after a long time with various calibers, I have settled on 7x57 and 30-06 for the long run.

in your action, either the 260 or 6.5HCM would be very good, but only really worth it if you hunt species benefiting from 120-140g bullets being used.

but personally, I’d go 257 Roberts with 120g nosler partitions on a good Mauser action
as per the previous response from PKL, you may find they don't stabilise so if you can try a handful first, all the better.
re other bullets to try, the Sierra 85gn BTHP is also very good, in my Tikka 595 it made tiny groups over Varget at 2950fps (incidentally this is not quite deer legal in England & Wales at under 1700ftlbs) yes you can drive it much faster, but you start running the risk of too much damage at close range. Excellent bullet though. The Sierra pro hunter 100 grain is worth trying too, look up some of Dodgyknees' posts on here about it, I'll give it a try at some point but tend to use the 243 for daytime foxing duties now with the 87gn vmax being particularly deadly! Deer duties for me are all handled with a 30-06 (165gn driven slow).
I have access to a chrony so I will check legality once a favorable load is found. My other rifle (NV setup) is a 22-250 and vmax makes the foxes go sloshy inside. Very affective!
Wouldn't bother paying for a test pack, you need a faster twist

ELD-X in 103gr and AMax in 105gr are too long for any usable stability in a 1:10"

you will find they may shoot but you will be in such a narrow band of stability you may find the accuracy drops off depending on how hot it is that day!

I have done a fair amount of hands on testing of long (not heavy) for calibre bullets and managed to get some anomalies to stabilise but accuracy is "average"

the ,243 is made worse by being barrelled in 1:10" and having a "sweet spot" of bullets in the 75-90gr range

Unless you are routinely shooting past 300m and can call the difference between a 12mph and a 15mph 3/4 value wind you don't need a high BC bullet
Its all marketing fluff

Find a bullet you can buy reliably (ELD-X is not in the category!)
Find one that fits the purpose (if you don't need 100gr plus to conform to the Deer Act there are better options)


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If you Google this issue, the question has been raised a few times in threads on US forums. One or two posts state that on contacting Hornady's help-line, the response is it is designed for 1:8-inch twist.

Why oh why doesn't Hornady put the minimum required twist rate on the box or even on its bullet data in its website? Failing to do so verges on mis-selling IMO given that the SAAMI standard rate for the 243 Win is 1:10" as it has been since the cartridge was introduced in 1955.

Heym SR20

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I would go with an 80, 85 or 90gn Softpoint bullet in what ever flavour your local gun emporium stocks. If you are shooting big Red, then look at the Nosler partition. Softpoint's are tough enough to work well on deer, but will also work on corvids and fox.

You only need 100gn to be large deer legal in Scotland.

ndt man

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unless you have an 1/8 or at a push 1/9 twist barrel forget them and find something in the 85 -100 gr weight range. I'm fortunate that I have an 1-8 twist and using 105 A-max its unbelievably accurate (and having tried the new fandango eld x 103 gr I'm not a fan ) save your money .


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As has been clearly pointed out above - the 103gr ELD-X will not stabilise in a 1:10” barrel. Guaranteed.

The Remington 700s with their 9.125” twist will not stabilise them either.

I have an email from Hornady that very clearly states you need a max twist rate of 1:8”.

Laurie is right, why this is not clearly stated up front is beyond me - Sierra do, so should Hornady.


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Yeah but the point of sale for many (most?) of bullet purchases in a lot of countries is a website, and its highly likely the buyer will have researched the bullets on the manufacturer website first.

And the Hornady site makes no mention whatsoever of required twist for the 103gr ELD-X. Neither does it publish the bullet length, I emailed and asked to which they replied immediately which was good.

If you look at the retailer websites in the US you’ll see lots of 1 out of 5 star reviews, because guys bought these pills for the 1:10” twist . To my mind its a bit obvious that they won’t stabilise but I suppose you’ve got to have played that game before to have the hunch.

They were designed for the 6mm Creedmoor, not the .243 Winchester.
any 80 to 100 gr BULLET will work but buy a chronograph to make sure you reach the correct foot pounds of energy for deer in the uk with your reloaded rounds/ammo.85gr sierra will work either the hpbt or the s.p. you will require around 3000 fps to be legal.
Thanks! Good advice.
Thank you everyone, really sound advice and I have learnt a lot. Having looked at the data and what my local Gunshop stocks (Sportsman Exeter is my go to shop) plus previous experience and their effectiveness in my 22-250, I am going to try the 87grn Hornady V-max. The data on my ballistic calculator (shooter on android) also looks promising. I should be able to get a 3000fps load but will of course start low and work up gradually.

I agree that bullet makers aught to include recommended twist rates.

Thank you all for taking the time to reply :D
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