What caliber for my son?

Discussion in 'The Basics, Starting Out' started by straightshooter, Aug 7, 2011.

  1. straightshooter

    straightshooter Well-Known Member

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    Replying to a current post here got me thinking. I have a Savage 16 fhss in a 7mm wsm caliber. The plan is to do a semi custom build on it myself. I was going to change the caliber to something with better barrel life to practice with and do a switch barrel thing if the factory barrel was a shooter. My son has a Ruger 10/22 now but at 13 it is definitely time to step him up. I would love to get him into the long range target shooting game. He is a bit scared of recoil. My fault. One time out when he was quite young he wanted to try dads gun (Ruger Hawkeye 308, this rifle recoils more than it should). I thought if I pushed on the recoil pad with my thumbs when he shot everything would be fine (didn't work out so well). Poor kid remembers that experience to this day. I did get him to shoot my Savage 12 fv 223 (because of the size of the rifle he thought it was a large caliber and would have a strong recoil). I did explain the size of cartridge to size of rifle had more to do with recoil, but he was very reluctant to take a shot. You should have seen his face after the first shot. It was at the end of the range session and he wanted to head straight back to tell mom he shot dads rifle and it didn't hurt at all (he was still quite young). So my question is what calibers would you suggest that have good long range ballistics, decent barrel life, and could be used on deer sized game, for my son.

    I don't have any experience with smaller calibers. I went from a 22 to a 303 British, to a 7mm rem mag. The only smaller caliber I have owned is the for mentioned 223.
     
  2. bamadawg2009

    bamadawg2009 Well-Known Member

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    Ill have the same thaught in about 5 years. My daughter is almost three and I want to get her started shooting early. Im leaning towards either a 243AI or 257AI for her first rifle but anything built off a 308 case or similar size is going to have great ballistics. Im not worried about it being too small, Florida deer rarely hit 200lbs. Just my .02
     

  3. Centxshooter

    Centxshooter Well-Known Member

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    Check out the 7mm-08, great round with really mild recoil. I picked up the Stevens version and replaced the trigger and stock and load ballistic tips (140) and have had great results on whitetails and hogs....
     
  4. straightshooter

    straightshooter Well-Known Member

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    What about the 260 remington, or a 308 winchester with a brake?
     
  5. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    Last edited: Aug 7, 2011
  6. ICANHITHIMMAN

    ICANHITHIMMAN Well-Known Member

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    I say 7-08 but you didnt say what you were hunting?
     
  7. Boom

    Boom Well-Known Member

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    +1 for the 7-08, espcially for game. Load it up or load it down should work on most game. If working more on the long range aspect, perhaps a .243, plenty of ammo, great performance. Good luck, I will be making similar decision next year for my son. He is currently shooting a FLCP-K in .223 and doing it well out to 300+!!!!
     
  8. hatfield954

    hatfield954 Well-Known Member

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    You could try .260 Remington, .257 Roberts, 7mm-08 Remington, .250 Savage, 30-30 Winchester.. Not a lot of recoil with any of these
     
  9. straightshooter

    straightshooter Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the input guys. What would be perfect would be a caliber I could use for 1000 yard practice, and my son could use to hunt deer and hogs.
     
  10. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    Recoil is bad juju! You're not doing your son a favor if he can't shoot a heavy recoil rifle.

    Don't under estimate the 6.5x55 Swede, it'll fit both of your requirements. Check this out ... 6.5x55 Swedish for Sniping

    Good luck!
     
  11. jeremiahgus

    jeremiahgus Active Member

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    get him a 300 win mag. a good muzzle break will make anything a dream to shoot. It gives your the power for just about anything you want and its flat shooting enough
     
  12. FEENIX

    FEENIX Well-Known Member

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    I think a .300 WM even with a good MB is a tad too much too early for a young hunter with a negative experience below ...

     
  13. bamadawg2009

    bamadawg2009 Well-Known Member

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    Im going with 243 ackley if you want a 1000 yd practice gun and hunting gun for him. If recoils is too bad you can always and a muzzle break but I doubt it will be.
     
  14. WyoElk2Hunt

    WyoElk2Hunt Well-Known Member

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    My son started with a 25-06 when he was 14. He was shooting trap at 12 with a Remington 11-87 12 guage.