First LR rifle, sub $700 suggestions.

Discussion in 'The Basics, Starting Out' started by sml, Nov 29, 2005.

  1. sml

    sml Member

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    I grew up shooting and hunting, but have never owned anything that could be considered a deer rifle. I am 32, very poor, and have postponed buying a rifle for all of these years due to lack of money.

    Long story short, I have borrowed $900 in order to buy a rifle and bed; I've been sleeping on a blow-up one for the last two years. Maybe I'll be able to buy a base, rings, and scope in a year or so, but if I don't buy a rifle with some of this money, I never will be able to.

    I was thinking about a Savage "12 Series Varmint, Model 12FVSS" in 308, but am open to suggestions regarding both the caliber and rifle. With tax, I can get that locally for less than $700.

    Yes, I have been drooling over all of your custom rifles mentioned in this forum for a long time, but will never be able to afford one. Still, I know that y'all are the right folks to ask about this, so here I am.

    Thanks for your time. Good hunting.

    Shelton
     
  2. Domster4U

    Domster4U Member

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    SML,
    I had one of this before Savage "12 Series Varmint Model 12FVSS" in 308. Accuracy is impressive & it looks great as well. But not ideal for hunting it's kinda heavy. I would suggest Remington LTR for all purpose rifle.

    DoM
     

  3. coolvarmint

    coolvarmint New Member

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    Look at the Stevens 200. Exactly the same actions as Savage, minus Accutrigger. Less than $300, leaves alot for scope and misc. No heavy barrels though. Several review on it. Last I was in American Rifleman. Great shooters.
     
  4. dakor

    dakor Well-Known Member

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    I would look at either one of these.

    http://www.remington.com/products/firearms/centerfire_rifles/model_700/model_700_SPS_specs.asp

    http://www.remington.com/products/firear...nless_specs.asp

    They shoot like a house of fire and the blued one at Walmart sells for $389.99 The stainless one does not come in 308 and Walmart can order you one in a different cal if you wanted something else. At least the one here would. I know I am going to get beat up over this but stay away from the Savage yep that is right I said it /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/ooo.gif They are a good rifle but are limited with stock selection add on triggers and other stuff. Yes I have a Savage so I can say that. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif Do not think you need a heavy barrel to get good accuracy. My friend and my dad have REM SPS's in 300win mag and they will shoot 3/4 to 1inch groups at 300 yards with 3 shots. Not bad for a stock rifle. As for a scope I would take a good look at the Nikon Buckmaster line. They have very good glass and track very well. Best scope for the money if you ask me.
     
  5. KRob

    KRob Well-Known Member

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    For you a Savage or Stevens would be a good option. Stevens is a savage minus accutrigger as someone already said. You can usally pick them up for under 400, if you shope around. Hunter or Weatherworrier serious probably would fit your need the best. Light barrels so easy to hunt with and dam accurate.
     
  6. Mysticplayer

    Mysticplayer Writers Guild

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    Shelton, welcome and you are definitely on the right track. You don't need to spend a lot of money to get some awesome shooting iron these days.

    You haven't speced what you will be using this rifle for so I will give a couple of suggestions.

    First off, get the model with the best trigger you can unless a non adjust or standard trigger model is being reduced to sell.

    I have several new Savages/Stevens an am amazed at how well they shoot. I recommend you start here.

    Best bang for the buck, the 12 or 112FV's (forget the more expensive models with fancy stocks, you can swap in later). They come with a 26" heavy barrel, accutrigger and a basic wide forend stock. Bed the action (you can do this for $4 or so), tune that trigger as light as it goes, handload and you have a sub MOA rig as far as you can shoot. Those black plastic stocks get a lot of flack but with a bit of simple work, do an excellent job. Just open that barrel gap up, after bedding, so that there is about 1/8" space around the barrel. Problem solved.

    I use mine to shoot out to 1000m with zero problems.

    To start, I suggest the 223 w/ a 9 twist. Dirt cheap to shoot (about 1/2 to 2/3 the cost of a 308), ballistically identical to the 308 with 175gr MK, zippo for recoil/noise, lots of cheap components and can be used for varmint and close deer hunting in a pinch. You can use bulk 55gr bullets for trigger time/low cost and move up to 75gr Amax for long shots.

    Trigger time is so important to learn. Lowering your costs as much as possible is just smart especially when on a budget. You can even shoot bulk Win varmint ammo and get decent accuracy. Then you save the initial cost of handload gear until you can save some money.

    Next cal would be a 243, 7-08 if more hunting on the menu. After that if you really want to do lots of LR shooting/hunting, I would go 7RM. Why skip all the 30cals? Simply the bullets are just not as ballistical good at the lower weights as compared to the 6mm and 7mm Amax. The heavies are way more expensive and recoil goes way up.

    I have not mentioned any 6.5's simply because they are not available in factory rifles. The 260 would be an awesome choice too if available in the heavy barrel.

    Look at the Stevens but you will eventually tire of the trigger and light barrel. You can always swap those later but for a few dollars now, you have everything you could need.

    Weatherby Vanguard/Howa, and Rem SPS are also good choices. However, the 'varmint' styles are going to cost more. Also, consider good used. There are so many great shooters that can be had for way less then a new custom.

    If you use an Elite 3200 10X, burris sig rings w/inserts, and a well priced FV, you should be able to get this entire rig up and shooting for under your budget of $700 (not including reloading gear of course). How does that strike you?

    If you want to spend a bit more money, you can upgrade to a Nikon Buckmaster SF 4X14 w/ mil dots and have a bit more mag right off the bat.
    Jerry
     
  7. KRob

    KRob Well-Known Member

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    Another thing i was thinking about and i had to go and check, is the prices you see on the internet are usally more expesive then they actually are. Especially if you shop around and watch for sails.

    Good luck to yeah
     
  8. sml

    sml Member

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    Wow guys, thanks for your suggestions! I went to a local gun dealer today to heft a few rifles and liked everything that I held, which were several Rem. 700s and Savages, although I could definitely hold steadier with the heavy barreled versions. I should say that I was just a little put off by the sound of the 700-series actions, but I imagine that I'd get over it.

    Since I failed to mention what I plan to use the gun for, let me do that now:
    Years back, I got a Tree Lounge treestand, so I plan to, on a regular basis, walk deep into a Wildlife Management Area, climb up a tree, and prepare to wait all day for a deer. I figured that I'd shoot better with a heavy barreled varmint-style rifle than a standard walk-around type, but I'm really open to the idea of the light barreled guns based on how well you all say that some of them are shooting.

    I'll probably wait a few more days before making my purchase in order to pour over your suggestions and do some praying about it. Yeah, I know that a lot of you buy and sell guns all of the time, but I will probably keep whatever I buy for the rest of my life, so in many respects, this purchase is a big deal for me. Having said that, I have so far only ruled out the Stevens; if I were to buy it, I'd probably always be wishing that I had gone ahead and spent a little extra on something else.

    Again guys, I appreciate you. I'll keep checking this thread and will definitely keep you posted.

    Shelton
     
  9. tylercleary

    tylercleary Well-Known Member

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    Jerry has given you some very good advice. The un-answered question is what do you want it to do? I will assume that since you're at this web site that it is going to be a for hunting, so I'll proceed fom there.

    Consider a used savage in preferably in 308. with an accu-trigger. I believe it is going to be the best value for an accurate, out of the box rifle that is sutable for both hunting and varminting.

    take a look:

    Savage 308 $425

    new model 12 BVSS 308 $519.00 (includes shipping and insurance)

    While I was looking around I found this as well:

    Model 111FCXP3 .270 with scope. new in the box $335.00 shipped! look at me!




    TAC
     
  10. sml

    sml Member

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    If I didn't make it clear, I'll be using the gun for deer hunting from a stand.

    Oh, and a little update: I went to another gun store, but noticed no heavy barreled rifles displayed. The owner didn't have anything good to say about any factory bolt action with the exception of Remington. I ended up looking at the closest thing that he had to something that interests me, which was a regular SPS.

    This is what I'm thinking right now:

    Savage 112 Varminter Low Profile in 25-06 (Most expensive of all)
    Savage 12FVSS in either 308 or 270 WSM
    Remington 700 VLS in 308 for $629
    Remington 700 SPS Stainless in 270, 7mm-08, or 7 Rem. Mag. for $529
    Weatherby Vanguard Stainless in 257 Wby.


    Needless to say, I'm open to all feedback/suggestions. This is a difficult decision.

    Shelton
     
  11. urbaneruralite

    urbaneruralite Active Member

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    Nov 20, 2005
    shenanigans!

    ...hey Farva, what's the name of that restaraunt you like so much with the candles and all the [censored] on the walls?...you mean shenanigans?...ooooohhh
     
  12. Coyboy

    Coyboy Well-Known Member

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    sml, Sounds like your hunting deer in timber, most shots under 300 yards. You have no money so you wont be going out west or hunting anything other than small southern deer. You will not be able to afford a rangefinder, or reloading equipment.

    I recomend a savage in 243, shoot factory 100 grain ammo, mount any of your run of the mil economy scopes in 3x9 in the $200 price range. The heavy barrel will drag you down on your long hikes into the timber so stick with a sporter.

    When finances allow, you can economically rebarrel your savage add aftermarket goodies and make it a long range rig. If thats where your interests take you.

    Good luck
     
  13. MU Ag Rho

    MU Ag Rho Well-Known Member

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    I would rule out the 257 Wby, the ammo is a little on the expensive side. I have had really good luck with the Howa's, but I own all Rem, just done mostly load development for the Howa boys around here. They shoot really well out the box. I have had a couple bad experiences with the proclaimed exceptional accuracy of a Savage, I couldn't get anything close to acceptable with the one's I owned.

    Dan
     
  14. Mysticplayer

    Mysticplayer Writers Guild

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    For tree stand hunting on deer in thick woods, I would again, suggest a Savage but this time the 10FCM in a 7-08 or 308. Small and handy rifles will do more for your hunting then any paper potential you read about.

    Putting yourself on a treestand all day is interesting but what's to say you will not get your deer going to or from your stand. I size my hunting rifles for exactly that...hunting.

    I also like the 243 but just incase, you see a big one way out there, I like the 7 and 30 for a bit more ooomph.

    Forget the semi designer cartridges, you will go broke learning. The 308 then is pretty much ideal as factory ammo is everywhere, usually cheaper, and usually very accurate.

    If you have a good supply of 7-08, I would go this route as the 7-08 will work better in the wind at extended distances, at least when you start to reload.

    The 270 is also a great one, but you did say you would be plinking as well so that gets a bit tough on the shoulder.

    Jerry