Been interested in long range for about 40 yrs but have never punched paper over 300yrds. Heck I even lived near the 'Original PA 1000 Yard Club' and never took time to visit it. I just bought a mod 70 7rem mag with 26" bbl and hope to try it with some Hornday Mag 139SST ammo for hunting. Am tryign to decide between a Bushnell 4-12x40AO and a Nikon 3-9x40ProHunter to put on it.
First off Welcome
second off leave now while you still have money in your back account , this longrange thing is addictive as crack the next thing you know your calling one of the great smiths here to build you a new long range hammer.
Your current rifle is a good base to start with , the caliber has all the power you need to shoot deer to 1000yds and paper a good bit further. Depending on the accuracy you can get with factory ammo (i'm assuming your not reloading as you mentioned the Hornady ammo) will make the biggest differance in your long range ability. Typicaly with any factory gun I get I take it down clean it realy well , bed the action and float the barrel , check the crown to make sure their no boogers on it , work the trigger over to smooth it up and adjust it so its lighter with less creep and overtravel than what the the manufacture's lawyers allow. That sounds like alot but its a good place to start to make sure the gun is close to where it needs to be to get started.
as for your scope choices , I'm not framiliar with either of those scopes but I've had good luck with Nikon. The scope is no place to pinch pennies , a cheap scope with poor focus and paralex issues will make a good gun shoot like a dog after all if you can't see it you can't hit it. a 10 power scope will get you on paper pretty well at 1000yds but a little more is always nice and like I mentioned a scope is an adjustable paralex set will make a big differance.
Next thing I'd invest in is a reloading setup , it doesn't have to be a big expensive combo but again investing a little more money will help you out in the long run. The Rockchucker kit from RCBS is a good buy and it has everything you need except dies and a few measuring tools and will load some great ammo. But if it takes a while to get your reloading supplies going then their are some good factory ammo loads out their.
If your shooting factory loads get a few differant boxes to see what your gun is gonna like the best.
Welcome, saw your post and thought I'd add my input. As said the 7Mag is a great caliber, and I think you'll be happy with it. As far as scope choice, have you looked at the Buckmaster 4.5 x 14 SF by Nikon? I have one of the Leopould of the same power as well as the Nikon and in my opion I belive the Nikon is a better scope. I hope that this dont cause a huge uproar, this is just my opinion. Hope this helps.
I bought a buckmaster and it will not focus clearly past 3-400 yards. I took it back where I bought it and they gave me another and it was the same thing only this one was puking grease. I got a refund and bought a vx-III Lr and have never looked back. To say I wasn't happy w/ the nikon was an understatement. The only reason I decided to buy a nikon was the price and everybody was saying good things about them. Moral of the story: Don't listen to anybody and check them out yourself until you have found what you think is good.
I'm new here myself. I have learned alot in my short stay here. Sure, it takes money to do some of the things guys do here, but I've noticed that the help and advice is here regardless of what you may be shooting. AND, the long range thing IS addicting. On the scope thing, Nikons may be O.K. but just because a company makes cameras doesn't mean it can build optics for firearms. To me, Leupolds are proven. And American. mtmuley
Sorry I missed mentioning that I reload. Bought my first Herter's in 1971. Still pumping out ammo with it, but my hands are wore out so I load little now. AM considering selling my loading outfit. I have the Nikon scope already and the Bushnell, Ill pick the rifle up Saturday and see what happens. If the Hornady ammo performs well Ill just buy a 5 boxes every payday. I appreciate all your comments and advice. Have already bought 5 guns this yr so I need ot just S.T.O.P. my wife says. But I want to focus on long range withe the 7remy so we'll see how it does.