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What youth rifle for my son?

 
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  #29  
Old 01-05-2013, 09:20 PM
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Join Date: May 2001
Location: Australia
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Re: What youth rifle for my son?

This is something that I have put a lot of thought into recently, as my 8 year old son is obsessed with hunting. We visited a friend in Namibia last year, and he managed to shoot a Springbok with a 222 Rem, and a black wildebeest with a .325WSM. The rifles used for both these animals were borrowed from friends, and both were suppressed. The 222 was great for him to shoot, but obviously is minimal gun for game, and even though he shot very well with it, a springbok was as far as we wanted to push it. He used his fundamentals learned from rimfire shooting with the WSM and shot it well, but even with the suppresser, the WSM was too much for him to manage.







We started talking about getting him a more suitable rifle for him to bring along on our next visit to Africa. My initial thought was to get either a 243 or a 260 for him, and if we were only hunting the smaller game animals, this would have been what we went with. But next time we hunt, he wants to try for a kudu, and the rifles we were considering are too limited for game of that size. We considered a few other options, and in the end we decided on a 308 Win.

The 308 makes a lot of sense given the relatively low cost of ammo components, the face that we can buy factory ammo virtually anywhere in the world, and the selection of bullet designs and weights we can use. We are going to put a brake on the rifle, along with a limb saver recoil pad, and I think that should make it very shootable for him Ė hopefully with recoil in the 223 to 243 range. I donít anticipate any issue with him using the braked rifle. He always hunts with ear protection on, even when we were shooting the suppressed rifles he preferred to keep his hearing protection on. He has stood behind me when I have shot my braked 300 RUM and didnít have a problem.

We bought a Tikka T3 Lite, and are in the process of adding all the parts to it at the moment. Once we have it together, I think he will have a rifle that is capable of handling 90% of the hunting he will be doing for the foreseeable future. For us, I think this will be the best choice, at least for our set of circumstances.
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  #30  
Old 01-06-2013, 07:43 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Reno, NV
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Re: What youth rifle for my son?

Fergus- Thanks for the input. Let me know how your son handles the .308. Your son looks like he is about the same size as my son.
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  #31  
Old 01-06-2013, 05:24 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2009
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Re: What youth rifle for my son?

I am in the process of buying a 25-06 for my daughter and niece to hunt with. 85 grain ammo now when they are small and 110 accubonds for when they are older.
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  #32  
Old 01-06-2013, 10:23 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2012
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Re: What youth rifle for my son?

You know the 25-06 is a pretty good idea. Recoil is down around 10-12lbs. With a good recoil pad that should not be a problem for him to handle. This next weekend I am taking by son out and let him shoot my old 30-30 which has pretty close to the same recoil. We will see how he does with it. This should tell me a little better how he handles recoil.
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  #33  
Old 01-06-2013, 11:19 PM
ntg ntg is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: ID
Posts: 319
Re: What youth rifle for my son?

A number have mentioned the Vanguard option and it's a good idea like many of the others shared. I'd offer a suggestion, try the almost twin to the Vanguard:

Howa/Hogue Youth 2-N-1 with Scope Package Combo

I've seen these in action with family members that own them and I wouldn't hesitate to get one. They're a great set up for a first rifle.

My 2 bits...
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  #34  
Old 01-07-2013, 12:59 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: WA STATE
Posts: 98
Re: What youth rifle for my son?

My oldest daughter uses a Tikka T3 lite in 25-06 and shoots everything with it. Granted she is 18 she only weighs about 115 lbs. My wifes uses a Weatherby ultra light in 25-06 and has killed several deer and elk with it. Both those rifles sport the 4X12 Leupolds same as my youngests .243.

I am a huge 25 caliber fan. I deer hunt with a 257 WTBY mag. I almost bought a rilfe barrel for my youngest to use on my contender in 256 win mag. I was worried about that one and lack of power that is how i decided on the Howa in 243. I have used my pistol barrel in the with 65gr bullets in the 256 win mag to smoke coyotes, rock chucks and prairie dogs.

The .308 i think would be good to. U could load it up to equal 30-30 velocities and the recoil would be very mild.

With a young one I am a firm believer in making it as fun as i can for the kids. I do not push my girls at all when they are done shooting i am good with it. When we are out hunting and one gets cold it is time to go home. I end up carrying all kinds of stuff i would normally not take so the kids have fun and enjoy them selves. I think with the research u are doing and all you are in the same boat as me in making it fun for the kids. Heck my 18 yr old daughter tried to get me to gut her deer this fall. She didnt win but i helped her :-)

Good luck and let us know what u decide.
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  #35  
Old 01-07-2013, 04:04 AM
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Join Date: May 2001
Location: Australia
Posts: 215
Re: What youth rifle for my son?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pburton View Post
Fergus- Thanks for the input. Let me know how your son handles the .308. Your son looks like he is about the same size as my son.
Will do. I think I am still around 6 or so weeks from being done, but the time I receive the brake and get the barrel threaded. I will post once everything is working.
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