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Looking for the "right" rifle.

 
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  #1  
Old 07-11-2008, 11:11 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2008
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Looking for the "right" rifle.

For about a year now I have hunted with a shotgun, mainly turkey, and I have gotten a few deer with the slug barrel that came with my mossberg. Now I have started looking around for a more long range rifle. I have had a few friends tell me to buy a 30-06 and others tell me a 7mm. I know generaly about rifles and want to get into hunting with a rifle more. I only have about $15000 to spend and want a gun that I can use for a long time and get a deer about 450 to 500 yards away with some ease. I would use it in brush and also field, but Im still not shure what to do. Any adivce will be great.
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Old 07-12-2008, 10:43 AM
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Hello and welcome!
I'm assuming that you mean that you only have $1500 to spend on Rifle scope combo and I will focus on factory rifles rather than costom. You can have a custom built for 1500 easily, but I'll let someone more knowedgeabe fill you in there.

There are litterally hundreds of options. If you intend to be limited to 500 yards and want to use it in the brush and field then you will want a sporter weight rifle or a mountain rifle. You will not want to lug a Sendero through the thickets. Many will steer you towards a Savage, but not me. I am a Tikka T3 fan because the shoot straight and they are inexpensive. Other options would include a Remington 700, Howa 1500, Win 70, Browning Abolt. Sako are excellent, but getting out of your price range.

Do you reload?? If you don't than you will want to stick to something that is fairly common so you can get rounds for it. 260, 270, 280, 308, 3006, 7mm rem, 300 WM.... the list goes on. Shot placement is key, so you can take deer sized game at long range even with a 243, but I favor a little more power. I shoot a 300wsm and I can see now that I could have gone with a little smaller round, but I like the added knockdown. If you will hunt in brush most of the time, then stick to the heavier rounds from 3006 and up. My next build for long range deer is going to be a plain old 260 rem.

The thing is it is always a give and take. If you want a really flat shooting rifle that will give you a little more leeway in your range estimation you will pay for it in barrel life, cost of bullets and recoil. Don't let anyone tell you to get a big mag so you don't have to aim much higher to tag one at 500 yards. Even a 270 AM will drop some at 500 yards. Get a rifle you feel comfortable shooting and won't wreck your shoulder ;)
Spend money on you glass!!! minimum of 400 dollars in my opinion and if you can afford it, and plan on dialing your shots at great distance, you will want to look at spending more.
good luck and fill us in on more information of you prefferences.
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Old 07-12-2008, 10:17 PM
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Well today I went to my local gun shop, which has a decent sized selection, and the guy there recemonded a 308 remington 700 sps varmit. I was thinking if I bought it I could always put a differnt stock like an h s stock later, mainly because I'm a college student and dont have that much money to spend except what I make over the summer. The main question I have is would that be a good choice, or would I be better just trying to build my own rifle?
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Old 07-13-2008, 07:28 AM
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i'm one of those guys that's gonna recommend a Savage or Remington. i was out shooting my Rem700 this morning, yeah it's a 30-06. for a one gun that'll do it all, i just don't think you can do better. i've hunted many a day in thick woods on foot all day as well as open terrain. i've shot a groundhog at 4 ft and a deer at 550 yards, a doz moose and everything in between. with a 22" barrel and a 4-12 vx2 that's been on it since Moby Dick was a minnow. it's light, compact, and if i do my part i can shoot between 3-6" at 500 yards with it. in my opinion, out to 500 yards, it's like a sore dick. you can't beat it!
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Old 07-13-2008, 07:31 AM
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I guess I think that you should know what you are doing if you are going to build a rifle. So I would get a factory rifle first and maybe in a few years you could build one. However, If you buy a stevens (savage) rifle, a Shilan barrel, a better stock better trigger and take it to a gunsmith to put together you could easily get by under $1,100. A 308 is an excellent rifle to practice long range shooting with because it will last several thousand rounds. If you are going to cary the rifle through the thickets, you will be dissapointed in the varmint rifle cuz it will get heavy and it is long. That is why I suggested the sporter weight rifle, but that is just personal prefference. THe SPS trigger leaves something to be desired, it's stock isn't freefloated, but it is a good rifle for the buck. An HS stock isn't very cheap and I think the Sendero has one already. I am a big believer in free floated barrels, so I steared away from the SPS when I picked a 22-250 varmit rifle. I went with the Savage, but I wish I would have paid another 150 for the Tikka.
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Last edited by britz; 07-13-2008 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 07-13-2008, 09:07 AM
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i would agree, don't get a varmint style rifle. the sporter weight is the way to go. a 308 would be hard to argue against. there are quite a few used guns for sale at different places. for a guy starting out in college that would be a very cost effective alternative.
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  #7  
Old 07-13-2008, 09:56 AM
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One thing to keep in mind is that the heavy barrel will give you some advantages: more shots in a row before the rifle heats up, heavier for a more stable LONG RANGE platform, and the extra 4" of barrel length will give you a little more speed. HOWEVER, you are looking for a rifle that will hunt big game so you should only need a couple shots at a time, your stated limit is about 500 yards so a sporter barrel will be very sufficient for that, and the extra length will grab a lot of extra brush when you are going through the woods. Accuracy kills, speed misses faster. I am a HUGE believer in a good trigger, and one thing to note is that the SPS doesn't have a standard adjustable 700 trigger. You will need to get a BDL, ADL or a Mountain rifle 700 for that. When buying a used rifle, the 308 will last for upwards of 7000 rounds provided the thing wasn't abused, whereas a 300 mag will only last about 1/3 or less than that due to the increased powder burnt each shot eroading and heating up the barrel. Think of it as a comparison between the amount of powder burnt compared to the size hole it has to push it out. Same sized cases in different calibers like the 22-243, 243, 260, 7-08, and 308 will have a progressively longer life span as you get a bigger diameter. Performace also decreases as you do this. As I said before, it is always a compromise. Point being, if you are buying a used rifle, a 308 is probably one of the best cals to get since it will last so long. If someone was trying to sell you a used 22-243 with "only" 500 rounds down the tube, you can just plan on rebarreling in after you sight it in lol!
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