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New Hobby: Help me pick the right cartridge

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Unread 05-13-2012, 09:04 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Falls Church, VA
Posts: 3,474
Re: New Hobby: Help me pick the right cartridge

To keep the advice coming, check out my nephew's rifle as it is a good example of the things you can do with a stock rifle to make it better without going full custom:

Nephew's Transformed Rifle!

Alternatively, check out my old 308.

My 308 1k Rifle - The Evolution Continues!

Read that thread all the way to the end and it will lead you down its evolutionary road to a full custom 260...

My 260 by MCR

Both my nephew's 270 and my 308 had less than a $1000 total investment.

Hope that gives you some ideas.
I'm not gonna shoot here. I'm gonna shoot waaaaaaaay over there!
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Unread 05-13-2012, 10:01 PM
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,613
Re: New Hobby: Help me pick the right cartridge

For a factory gun Savage is hard to beat for the price. Check out the Weather Warrior series. They have the Accutrigger and Accustock. Shoot great right out of the box.

And i would go something thirty caliber like everybody else is suggesting. there is a reason why it is so popular... it just works well whether it's a 308 a 30-06 or a 300 win mag. Hard to beat a 30-06 for versatility especially considering you want to be able to hunt elk out here in Colorado.
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Unread 05-14-2012, 08:09 PM
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Join Date: May 2009
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Re: New Hobby: Help me pick the right cartridge

Originally Posted by iknowftbll View Post
Thank you for the replies and advice. I am really taking a closer look at the optics now, as I have a friend who advised something similar.
Trebark, I am most definitely going to check out the QSC. I drove past it the other day and made a mental note to look into it. Then forgot about it. I'm glad that you reminded me.
As for collecting expended brass, there are some rules for that. Most military ranges do not just let you take what you want. I'm sure that there are ways to legally do it, I've just never looked into it. Believe me when I say that I have considered a .308 purely because it is a common round on military bases and I recall while I was out at Camp Pendleton (California) that some fellow Marines were able to take advantage of a "surplus ammo" sale and scored hundreds of rounds for cheap.
As I said when I started this discussion, I am new to this and welcome any point of view or insight that you think may be of value. Thanks again and keep the suggestions coming!
Well there you go you have a legal option , that's good . See in the Australian Army we don't ever get that kind of option offered at all , so we are only entitled to what we can steal . I think it is a covert part of the training and what makes Aussies great scavengers in wartime .
I remember a survival course I went on one time not long out of recruit training and we got all this BS about what we could take and use on the course to cut a long story short I ignored most of the dumb orders given as they seemed excessively unusual and took what I needed to get through in one piece . Normally that would have been cheating but at the end of the course I was the only one to pass. The whole course had been about research into finding out how stupid soldiers could be when receiving bad instructions and how many would make sure that they followed their training and not bad orders. Unfortunately we were very dumb it seems but wee were also inexperienced at that stage . It is kind of how the Australian Army works every soldier is trained to think for himself and do the job of the next rank up , we have to because there is not many off us , but it also has the down side of making us seem a bit unconventional to say the least.
I was quite happy to see a Marine unit stationed in Darwin in Northern Australia as it will be good for our troops to be exposed to some of the Marines techniques and training. We don't get the range of specialist training that many US troops get on a regular basis. I hope that this cooperation continues for the future as I think the US will need new bases in the years to come where they are among friends not enemies.
For a scope setup I would go for a gun with an adjustable cheek piece that can mount a no taper Mil spec Picatinny rail and go for a quick change mount like an ARMS . That way you could have two scopes that are interchangeable . One a low power wide angle scope for thick woods hunting and the other a high power scope for longer range over an Atlas bi-pod . The ARMS mount can incorporate a 20 MOA rail in the mount for the long range scope but when it is removed the low power scope goes on to the no taper rail for close range work.
For a high power scope a Vortex or Nightforce would be good . If you get a scope with a tube diameter larger than 30mmm you may have to change to a Larue QC mount as I don't think ARMS make larger rings than 300 mm for their QC lever mount base but I may be wrong , I just can't see them for sale .
I like the ARMS mount because it is not an adjustable claw system and that helps it maintain zero. Adjustable claws are great for fitting up to out of spec rails but don't return to zero as well . The ARMS also will not marr the rail as it has a floating pad that is forced against the rail dovetail by the locking claw when it tightens up . The down side of the ARMS is that the rail must be right on specs for the mount or it will either not lock up , lock up so tight it may damage the levers or not lock up at all and be too loose. The secret is buy the ARMS mount first then take it to a place that has Mil spec rails to fit your gun and try the mount on the different rails till you find one that fits tight but can be unlocked with finger pressure.
Use a little grease between the floating pad and the locking claws to aid free movement.

Last edited by Bullet bumper; 05-14-2012 at 08:51 PM.
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Unread 05-19-2012, 08:26 AM
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Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 17
Re: New Hobby: Help me pick the right cartridge

Thanks again, all for the replies. Bullet bumper, thanks for serving! I have a lot of respect for the Australian armed forces and have enjoyed working with them. Lots of fun.

I've been researching more and more and am leaning toward a Remington 700 with a Nikon scope. I haven't decided on which model yet. The thing that pushed this decision was when my wife reminded me that the $$$ for all of this was coming from my 1966 Mustang which I finally sold to my brother. She knew how much I wanted to rebuild that car and said basically that this hunting thing is more or less replacing my desire to build a car. With that in mind, she encouraged me to go ahead and get a nicer rifle and a better scope.

That wife of mine...pick of the liter!

I'll probably use the facilities on Quantico to bore-sight the scope once I've got it all pieced together. Good times!
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Unread 05-19-2012, 04:34 PM
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Ventura CA
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Originally Posted by iknowftbll
...I've been researching more and more and am leaning toward a Remington 700 with a Nikon scope. I haven't decided on which model yet...

I'll probably use the facilities on Quantico to bore-sight the scope once I've got it all pieced together. Good times!

First, thank you for your service. I get to meet with Marine Scout Snipers occasionally in my work as a DoD contractor. It is an honor and a privilege for me to interact with members of the Corps.

I'm not sure that a Rem 700 is a step up from a Wthby Vanguard or a Savage. I have yet to see one on which bases fit properly without shimming or bedding them. There's a lot variation in the manufacturing process. Stock rifles are hit and miss in terms of group size. I have couple of Savages and they shoot better than I do. My next rifle is likely to be either a Savage or a Vanguard.

I second .308 Win for your needs. 30-06 actions are heavier. If I wanted more punch I would go with .338 Fed. I shoot .358 Win which is the next caliber up. Either .308 or .338 would be a great mid range caliber for any big game in North America. By mid range I mean up to 300-500 yds, depending on the load.

I've shot at Quantico recently. Very nice facility. You're lucky to have it nearby.

Last edited by bruce_ventura; 05-19-2012 at 05:37 PM.
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Unread 05-19-2012, 07:33 PM
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Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 17
Re: New Hobby: Help me pick the right cartridge

Thank you for the kind words. Also thank you for your reply and the advice. It's good to hear from people who know what they are doing. I considered the Savage models long and hard, but as I closely inspected them along with the Remingtons, Tikkas, Brownings and a few others, I just really liked the way the 700 looked and felt. Especially the bolt action. Sometimes when you pick up a gun you just know what "right" feels like, agree? I went ahead and made the purchase today. I will be purchasing the glass in a couple weeks, and then it's off to the range with me!
I also hear that I can hunt wild hogs out here in VA. Of course, I'm going to have to research the laws before I proceed. I also learned that it is legal to hunt coyotes out here with an AR-15. I just happened to have one...
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Unread 05-20-2012, 08:05 PM
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Join Date: May 2012
Location: Arlington TX
Posts: 5
Re: New Hobby: Help me pick the right cartridge

Captain thanks for your service and welcome to the hunting community. I am new to this forum but just wanted to add my thoughts. The Remington 700 is an excellent choice and 30.06 is a versatile cartridge with a large enough case capasity to push 220 grain bullets and I have cyote hunted with 100 grain bullets. I bought a 700 as my second rifle in the late 60s and made it shoot MOA groups. I put a Redfield 3-9 scope on it, glass bedded the action and free floated the barrel. I polished the trigger with buffing compound to a mirror finish and it was smooth and crisp as a target trigger. Did it all myself to keep the expence down and had the satisfaction I did it myself. Good luck and don't forget the shooting sticks.
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