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spitfirebill
spitfirebill PowerDork
3/30/16 7:14 a.m.

Well the what gun thread went so well, what about a what rifle thread. Around the time my son was born, I went to the local sporting goods store to buy a rifle. I had my mind set to buy a .243 in some flavor of bolt action. The sales guy kept trying to sell me his custom 30.06 because he had shot a deer that didn't die and he was upgrading to a 7mm Magnum. I didn't waste my time with telling him to practice more on shot placement, but I got so turned around I walked out with a 12 gauge Browning Auto 5.

So 37 years later I am still wanting to buy a rifle, but what rifle and what caliber? I am thinking about a 7-08 most likely in bolt action. Problem is, I doubt I will ever shoot a deer (except the barstards that keep eating my garden). So I've been toying around with something milsurp like a Garand, Swiss K-31 or Swedish 6.5mm Mauser.

Discuss amongst yourselves.

EDIT: I am not an AK or AR fanboi.

KyAllroad
KyAllroad UltraDork
3/30/16 7:21 a.m.

Staying in the common caliber theme that we started with the other thread, I'm a fan of .308. Plenty of punch to knock down anything short of BIG game and since it's also 7.62 NATO it's nearly as common as sand.

Mine is a Remington 700 PSS (Police Sniper System). It's heavy but as a sniper platform it's pretty hard to beat. Optics play a big part in long range accuracy and if you're thinking of shooting past 300 meters plan to spend as much on a scope as you do on the rifle. I run a Leupold scope and at 100 meters using surplus military ammo all the bullet holes touch one another.

edit: the rifle is WAY more accurate than I am. I'm sure in the right hands, consistent 1000 meter shots are possible.

stroker
stroker SuperDork
3/30/16 8:13 a.m.

Find a Ishapore SMLE or a FR8 Spanish Mauser. Usually available for less than $500 on Gun Broker if you're patient. The Mauser has the benefit of not using expensive and hard to find detachable magazines.

bigdaddylee82
bigdaddylee82 SuperDork
3/30/16 8:16 a.m.

.270, 30-06, .243, 7mm-08, .308, .7mm Mag, etc. shoot a few, look at their ballistics, compare it to what you'll be using for, choose the platform you want to shoot that caliber in. .30-06 is kind of a jack of all trades, hard to go wrong with any for most medium-large game in North America, I might pick something else if you're after bear or moose, but you'd be hard pressed to find a more versatile round.

First rifle I bought myself was a .270 Winchester Model 70, synthetic stock, blued, Simmons 3-9x32, Walmart special. I was in Jr. High, and mowed a lot of yards for that rifle. I bought the rifle, a sling, and 2 boxes of shells, and I was broke.

I've got a soft spot for the .270, it has a little faster velocity and flatter trajectory than the 30-06, but you get a lot more options with the 30-06.

I prefer the Winchester 70 to the Remington 700, but if I were buying a new rifle today it'd probably be a Savage, a model 11 or 12 in 6.5 Creedmore is on my short list of next firearm. I've got 2 other Savage rifles, and their Accutrigger has spoiled me, I want it on all my rifles.

jonsteckelberg
jonsteckelberg New Reader
3/30/16 8:52 a.m.

Personally I am considering a Henry lever gun in 45 long Colt. What do you all think about this? Not big into hunting, would be mainly a range gun with the possibility of hunting. And lever action guns are just so COOOOL!

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess MegaDork
3/30/16 8:59 a.m.

7x57 (7mm Mauser) is a good round. It is the grandfather of virtually all center fire rifle cartridges today. The 7-08 is almost the same.

8mm Mauser is also one to consider. Still some large ring WWII surplus rifles out there in the sub-$300 range. Ammo is plenty and reasonable if you shop around.

Or just get a Rem 700 in 308 and be done with it.

KyAllroad
KyAllroad UltraDork
3/30/16 9:13 a.m.
jonsteckelberg wrote: Personally I am considering a Henry lever gun in 45 long Colt. What do you all think about this? Not big into hunting, would be mainly a range gun with the possibility of hunting. And lever action guns are just so COOOOL!

They are indeed cool. Henry rifles are big $$$$, and justifiably so. They are really nice!

java230
java230 HalfDork
3/30/16 9:45 a.m.

The Ruger Precision rifle is getting great reviews and is at a good price point as well, comes in 308, 243, or 6.5 creedmore.

I want a 45-70 but its not really a "hunting rifle"

oldtin
oldtin PowerDork
3/30/16 9:54 a.m.

on the military surplus side, moisin nagants are still cheap and plentiful - rifle is fine (don't use the military surplus ammo for hunting - it tends to keep going instead of mushrooming). Otherwise something in a .308 or 30 06.

gearheadmb
gearheadmb HalfDork
3/30/16 9:58 a.m.

A few years ago one of the big name outdoor mags named the 30-06 the best all around cartridge, and a Remington 700 won't let you down.

BAR's use them too.

Brian
Brian MegaDork
3/30/16 10:12 a.m.

I'm looking at .308. 8mm Mauser is ok if you plan on running corrosive surplus ammo or reloading all the commercial brass you get your hands on. My dad has on oddball post war Spanish Mauser with a heavy barrel. It has been replaced with a Ruger American in .308.

If I wanted to get into the bolt mil-surp game, I'd go for an Mossin Nagant. Last I looked, 7.62x59R was easier to find than 8mm Mauser.

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess MegaDork
3/30/16 10:18 a.m.

Here is everything I know about 7mm Mauser: http://www.sporterizing.com/index.php?showtopic=10935

spitfirebill
spitfirebill PowerDork
3/30/16 10:30 a.m.

I'll pass on the Moisins. Too much fire and recoil. 30.06 is bigger than I want too.

Did Remington fix their safety issue in the 700? Are the new Winchesters worth E36 M3? All I used to read was if it wasn't a pre-64 Winchester it was crap.

paranoid_android74
paranoid_android74 Dork
3/30/16 10:40 a.m.

I shot a Swiss K31 for a couple of years at Camp Perry. It shot far batter than I could. Used the Prvi Partizan ammo- non corrosive and reload able. It was pretty reasonably priced too.

I can't speak to knock down power of the round as I only shot paper with it. But it was very accurate at 200 yards.

Mine came from a gun show for $250 (beech stock, not walnut). It even had the soldier's name under the butt plate.

bigdaddylee82
bigdaddylee82 SuperDork
3/30/16 11:42 a.m.

In reply to spitfirebill:

Mine's a ~'95 model, been as reliable as gravity, I put a Luepold VX-1 with Luepold rings on it about 12 years ago. Loves to shoot the cheap 130 Gr Federal Power Shok.

You can get a Model 70 "Classic" from ~'94 on that's basically a pre '64 action with some of the improvements of the '92+ rifles.

If you want a shooter, don't sweat it, buy the one you want in the caliber you want. If you want a collector piece, buy a pre '64.

chuckles
chuckles HalfDork
3/30/16 11:53 a.m.

The 6.5 Swede is as pleasant to shoot as any long-range highpower cartridge out there. The old Swedish Mausers are maybe the best-finished and most accurate military rifles ever. Accordingly, they are getting expensive.

stuart in mn
stuart in mn UltimaDork
3/30/16 12:40 p.m.

I think you have to figure out what you're going to use it for first, before talking brands and models. Hunting, targets, shooting tin cans off a fence?

WOW Really Paul?
WOW Really Paul? MegaDork
3/30/16 1:00 p.m.
Dr. Hess wrote: 7x57 (7mm Mauser) is a good round. It is the grandfather of virtually all center fire rifle cartridges today. The 7-08 is almost the same. 8mm Mauser is also one to consider. Still some large ring WWII surplus rifles out there in the sub-$300 range. Ammo is plenty and reasonable if you shop around. Or just get a Rem 700 in 308 and be done with it.

I cannot for the life of me find surplus 8mm ammo laying around to feed my '42 K98 Mauser.....it's bad enough I ordered all new components to hand load 1000rds last week.

30-06 is indeed the jack of all trades in the US, plenty of support and when hand loaded can shoot softer than a 308 and nearly rival a 300WinMag.

Personally, I own a Remington 700 with an older Tasco World Class sitting up top. They really are the standard for affordable accuracy presently. I wouldn't turn down a pre-1964 Winchester model 70 or a browning A-bolt however.

Just remember, a good rule of thumb(sorry feminists) is that you will probably spend as much on a good scope as you will for the rifle.

WOW Really Paul?
WOW Really Paul? MegaDork
3/30/16 1:02 p.m.
java230 wrote: I want a 45-70 but its not really a "hunting rifle"

It was a good enough hunting rifle to nearly exterminate the bison.....

Huckleberry
Huckleberry MegaDork
3/30/16 1:06 p.m.

In reply to WOW Really Paul?:

I am so glad you said bison instead of buffalo. It's a pet peeve. There are no buffalo in North America, never have been.

WOW Really Paul?
WOW Really Paul? MegaDork
3/30/16 1:16 p.m.
Huckleberry wrote: In reply to WOW Really Paul?: I am so glad you said bison instead of buffalo. It's a pet peeve. There are no buffalo in North America, never have been.

Yep, my neighbor actually raises them as cattle. They're tastier than cow.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
3/30/16 1:22 p.m.
KyAllroad wrote: Staying in the common caliber theme that we started with the other thread, I'm a fan of .308. Plenty of punch to knock down anything short of BIG game and since it's also 7.62 NATO it's nearly as common as sand. Mine is a Remington 700 PSS (Police Sniper System). It's heavy but as a sniper platform it's pretty hard to beat. Optics play a big part in long range accuracy and if you're thinking of shooting past 300 meters plan to spend as much on a scope as you do on the rifle. I run a Leupold scope and at 100 meters using surplus military ammo all the bullet holes touch one another. edit: the rifle is WAY more accurate than I am. I'm sure in the right hands, consistent 1000 meter shots are possible.

Yaaaaas. .308 ftw. Accurate, cheap, and the buildouts are limitless.

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess MegaDork
3/30/16 1:35 p.m.

The 8x57 I've seen recently was priced about the same as any other centerfire round, like 30-06, 270, etc. There's some cheaper eastern Europe stuff around. Not like the "olden" days of 10-12 years ago when you could get it delivered for eight cents a pop, and that was high.

I make 7x57 brass out of 30-06, as detailed in the thread linked above. Don't see why you couldn't make 8x57 out of it as well. Pretty sure you can. Once fired 30-06 should be pretty easy to come by.

The Savage rifles get pretty good reviews. Good accuracy and very reasonably priced. Not sure about ultra long term reliability if you're going to try to put 10K rounds through one.

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess MegaDork
3/30/16 1:44 p.m.
WOW Really Paul? wrote:
java230 wrote: I want a 45-70 but its not really a "hunting rifle"
It was a good enough hunting rifle to nearly exterminate the bison.....

Did a pretty good job on the Indians as well. Nothing more dangerous to hunt than man, so they say.

SDJones hand cannons made a Contender barrel in 45-70. Probably still does. He said it would go through 10 ft of elephant. Not bad for a handgun.

bigdaddylee82
bigdaddylee82 SuperDork
3/30/16 1:51 p.m.
Dr. Hess wrote:
WOW Really Paul? wrote:
java230 wrote: I want a 45-70 but its not really a "hunting rifle"
It was a good enough hunting rifle to nearly exterminate the bison.....
Did a pretty good job on the Indians as well. Nothing more dangerous to hunt than man, so they say. SDJones hand cannons made a Contender barrel in 45-70. Probably still does. He said it would go through 10 ft of elephant. Not bad for a handgun.

T/C Encore .45-70 is handy on south Arkansas wild boars too.

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