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Looking for a varmint/deer rifle

 
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  #1  
Old 08-03-2010, 01:28 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 20
Looking for a varmint/deer rifle

Alright so I just got back from a 2 day trip to Western Kansas where we spent some time blasting some prairie dogs, that was a great deal of fun. The only problem was that every previous notion I had about getting a long range rifle came back and I feel my wallet opening up like a P dog hit by a JHP round. This was the first time that we actually used my dads 22-250 (M77 MKII Target with Bushnell Legend 5-15 X40) and the success was mild, I couldn't seem to hit much out to 400 yards like my friend holding a M700 .204 with an old 3-9x40 tasco. I'm sure the JHP rounds weren't much help compared to the .204 with V-Max bullets but they were the cheapest and that's why we bough them. On the bright side I now have plenty of brass to reload if I can get my grandpa to let me actually use his reloading equipment instead of going over with that intent and watching him for 3 hours.

If I can scrounge up enough money after accounting for student loans then I'll be looking to get myself a long range gun around Christmas time. I've spent hours now going over the possible calibers and models to put it in and came up with the conclusion that just asking would get me better answers then more hours of reading in the wrong direction.

I read the article on budget long range rifles and that's what I'm basing part of this on. My budget for the gun itself is about $500-$600

I'm looking for a cartridge that is great for varmint and target shooting out to around 600 yards, with relatively low recoil, long barrel life, and low heat. I also do a fair bit of deer hunting which requires a bullet sized over .23" here in Kansas. Although frankly I'm not that concerned about it, wouldn't phase me to shoot a deer with that 22-250. Right now I use a light barreled 7mm RM and that things been kicking my ass since I was twelve so I definitely don't want to go High Powered. I'd like a cartridge that is easy to find and cheap to reload so that I don't have to break the bank when shooting.

For the actual gun IDEALLY I would in the end like a thumb-hole synthetic stock, heavy fluted barrel, in stainless finish. So the gun I am looking for has to be good when purchased but easily upgradeable to something great. Although when your on a budget you rarely ever get what you want. Neither weight nor size is any large concern.

Frankly I'm not really sure what to look for. I was looking at the Stevens 200 for the budget option but that doesn't really have any of my preferred characteristics and even after changing the barrel to a stainless bull it would still have a blued receiver. Not to mention after adding the barrel, accutrigger, and thumb hole stock it would hardly be the same rifle.

My other option is to have a friend who happens to be a gun dealer get me a good used model, assuming I can give him a list of guns to look for he can find me a good used gun or even a gun with a bad barrel so that the money saved could be used toward a new improved barrel. So what's the thought on used guns? If it's a good idea what's a good gun to pick up used for around $500?

Thanks for the help.

-B&C
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  #2  
Old 08-03-2010, 08:27 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 929
Re: Looking for a varmint/deer rifle

look at the weatherby vanguard (made by howa) in .243, or .308. $399.00 retail price, great trigger (fully adjustable) not to bad of a stock, and the 4 I've played with are GREAT shooters.
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Old 08-03-2010, 10:47 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
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Re: Looking for a varmint/deer rifle

Well that's kinda the same deal as the Stevens except it has the accuracy guarantee. What options are there in that price range that come in stainless? Not too concerned about the thumbhole as that can be changed should I get a heavier barrel. Or perhaps someone can recommend a gun I can look for used?
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  #4  
Old 08-03-2010, 05:38 PM
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Location: Fredericksburg VA
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Re: Looking for a varmint/deer rifle

Howa 1500 varmint, in thumbhole fiberglass stock with stainless heavy barrel in 243. Handled a nice on yesterday.

about $600-675 in most places new.

BH
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  #5  
Old 08-04-2010, 01:01 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 20
Re: Looking for a varmint/deer rifle

Oh I like the looks of that! Just what I was looking for. How's that manufacture reputation amongst long range shooters? And what's the thought on used guns, since that would bring it closer to my budget and leave a little more budget for a good scope.

Thanks for the help,
-B&C
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  #6  
Old 08-06-2010, 09:16 AM
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Location: Central Pennsylvania
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Re: Looking for a varmint/deer rifle

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackAndChrome View Post
Oh I like the looks of that! Just what I was looking for. How's that manufacture reputation amongst long range shooters? And what's the thought on used guns, since that would bring it closer to my budget and leave a little more budget for a good scope.

Thanks for the help,
-B&C

BH is right up my alley. I automatically thought of the Howa varminter. I can tell you that you won't be disappointed in that rifle. It is based on a Mauser action. It is a very strong action, and with a little tweaking to the factory trigger, you can hold one hole groups without a problem. My dad bought a sporter action in 25-06 and had it fitted to a nice piece of wood. The action got bedded and the trigger worked on. I found a load using IMR4831 and 120grn SGK BTHP cutting one hole groups. That would be an awesome platform to start on. You can also get it in a .308 which you could give you big lead for dear and load with 110 V-max for 600yrds and less varminting. The 243 would be a good way to go though for what you are asking.

Tank
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  #7  
Old 08-08-2010, 05:14 PM
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Re: Looking for a varmint/deer rifle

if you reload you could load your 7mm down a bit. use 139 btsp or 120 baltip for deer. load them to 3000 fps deadly on deer very little recoil.then you could get a 204 or 22-250 for var mints
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