Which rifle to use for first long range set up. (Reposted from wrong thread)

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by Coleman 45, Jan 30, 2014.

  1. Coleman 45

    Coleman 45 Active Member

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    (Already posted this once in beginners section and didnt get much of an answer, so thought id try again here.) I'm a high school senior in Texas. I have been hunting all my life, and am wanting to get into truly long range shooting. I've used the equipment i have to take game out to 430ish yards, and targets to 600. My main rifle is a Winchester model 70 .270 made in 1965. Its in a Hogue overmold stock with the aluminum block. My question is, should i use this rifle, or a Savage model 10 "walmart special" factory rifle in .270 as a starting point for a long range rifle? The m70 shoots sub MOA easily, and I havent tried grouping the savage. The savage also has a much thinner barrel than the winchester. Are either of these suitable for LR use?
     
  2. Jud96

    Jud96 Well-Known Member

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    Well first off, welcome to the site! Nice to see another high schooler, like me, interested in long range hunting and shooting. Now down to the business, if it were my decision I would go with the Savage. The Savage is a better design in my opinion. The Savage also has a lot more accessories available for it such as triggers, stocks, and barrels for upgrades later on. Your Winchester is more of a classic even though its not a pre-64 rifle, I would actually put the original stock back on it and keep it as a sentimental rifle because of its age and value. An older 60s Winchester would be a great rifle to pass down and keep in the family.

    The .270 Winchester is a great cartridge to start out with for hunting long range. When I first started shooting long range with hunting rifles I used my light barreled Remington Model 700 .270 Win. I use it for deer hunting out to 700yds and long range varminting. This rifle means a lot to me because it was my Dad's best friend's rifle and I got it when I was only 10. It shoots outstanding, at 100yds it shoots 1/2inch groups easy and out to 700yds it stays around 1/2 MOA. I find it to be a great deer cartridge and will suit you well. I also have some great loads for the .270 WIN, so if you need any help reloading for it I will be happy to help.

    I believe your Savage will be a great place to start. After getting into shooting long range you could possibly bed the rifle and maybe do more to it to fit your needs. Put a decent piece of glass on top of it and shoot good ammo and it'll be a great rifle. Hope this helps. If you need anymore help just ask, I will help out or one of the other members will.gun)
     

  3. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    Welcome to LRH Coleman. I think the best answer is the best rifle will be the one that shoots the best and shoots consistently the farthest... when it comes to long range. I personally like the M70 action, especially the pre 64. I heard the post 64's has some issues but not all that familiar with them. The current model M70 is a good action. The aluminum bedded Houge stock is a good stock as well. Not the best, but good.

    If you handload, try working up a good load in each rifle and see which shoots the best and most consistent. if you don't handload, try a few boxes of different factory ammo and see if one is better than the other. If you want to get into serious LR shooting, handloading is pretty much required.

    Cheers
     
  4. Jud96

    Jud96 Well-Known Member

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    +1 reloading is a must
     
  5. blackaj

    blackaj Well-Known Member

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    Good for you getting into long range in high school. I'm 12 years removed but I know what it's like to build a good setup on a budget. I think the savage is a good starting platform, if it shoots now then great, I have a 270 WSM and I am very happy with the .277 caliber. Especially now that Matrix has the 165's with a .65 BC, and new to the lineup is the Nosler 150 LR with the same BC.

    If your rifle won't stabilize the high BC bullets then the savage really has the upper hand: Mcgowen makes a great "drop in barrel" for under $300. I re-barreled a savage 22-250 with a Mcgowen 1:8 twist and it shoots 1/4 MOA. The barrel swap requires a few inexpensive headspace gauges and a barrel nut wrench, you can literally do the swap in an hour.

    Whatever you decide just make sure you get good glass, I use a Zeiss 6-20x50 conquest and for the price ($750) I don't think you could beat it.
    Good luck.
     
  6. Coleman 45

    Coleman 45 Active Member

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    The M70 shoots 1 MOA or better consistently, the Savage is a minute of deer type of thing. it was a walmart special my dad bought more than ten years ago
     
  7. Jud96

    Jud96 Well-Known Member

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    If you bed your Savage and adjust or replace the trigger, it will shoot 1/2 MOA or better. I have nothing against your Winchester, just the Savage will be the better rifle to work with while not breaking the bank. You could put a heavier, longer, barrel in it if the .270 doesn't shoot good enough and if you go that far I'd get a different, better all around cartridge.
     
  8. Coleman 45

    Coleman 45 Active Member

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    I was thinking about starting with a quality scope on the winchester for practicing dialing distances and shooting technique until i can afford better equipment. BUt one reason i was considering using the m70 was that there is a local gunsmith here that doe quite a bit og work on Model 70s in his shop and accurizes them.
     
  9. Jud96

    Jud96 Well-Known Member

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    Well since you've decided to choose the Model 70, get it bedded and trigger adjusted. How much do you want to spend on a scope?
     
  10. benchracer

    benchracer Well-Known Member

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    The push feed Winchester M70's were maligned mostly because they weren't pre-64 model 70's. Despite the fact that the post-64 rifles are comparatively unloved, there are quite a few accomplished gunsmiths who prefer them as a basis for a custom rifle build. If you are fortunate enough to have such a gunsmith in your locality, by all means, talk to him about what he can do with your rifle.

    Really, though, if your rifle already reliably shoots sub-MOA, you may be better off to put your resources into acquiring the quality scope that you mentioned and toward a modest handloading setup. From there, save for a new barrel and some accurizing work. When you have shot your .270 barrel out, then would be a good time for gunsmithing and you may wish to go with a different chambering.

    You have a solid base to start with. I recommend that you use your resources to hone yourself as a rifleman, rather than get caught up in gear and chambering. There will be plenty of time for that later.
     
  11. upacreek

    upacreek Well-Known Member

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    I have owned all variations of the M70. I cannot understand why the pre 64 is so desired above a newer model. I really like Winchesters and personally prefer them over a savage. Personally I would start hand loading and the better gun will stand out.
     
  12. Coleman 45

    Coleman 45 Active Member

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    Ya, I absolutely love that gun. Its more accurate than I am. But the reason i think its that way is because of the Hogue stock, before i installed it it was in the original crappy looking yellowish wood stock that was no where near a good fit for the action. Also putting a quality scope instead of the $60 tasco that was on it when i first got it too helped. Right now its in a Weaver Classic V10 with the EBX reticle, which i used to take a deer at around 430yds this year. As far as scopes go, i have been looking at the SWFA SS scopes. From what ive heard and seen, they seem to be great scopes for the cost. Do any of yall have any experience with them?
     
  13. benchracer

    benchracer Well-Known Member

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    I have a fixed 10X SS that I use to shoot F-T/R matches. I like it a lot. One of the 3-15x42 SS scopes is high on my shopping list. Something most people overlook when it comes to shopping for long range glass is the need for a lot of internal adjustment. Very few scopes short of the high end stuff have that. The SS line has 100+ MOA of internal adjustment. They aren't fancy, but they are rugged and repeatable. Tough to beat for the price.
     
  14. MontanaRifleman

    MontanaRifleman Well-Known Member

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    The original pre 64 M70 was a mauser type CRF action with claw extractor. In 64, Winchester decided to cut costs in making the M70's and part of that was going to the push feed action and no claw extractor as I understand it. Guys who like CRF actions don't like push feed actoins so it caused a commotion among the loyal M70 crowd.

    In 1992 the CRF and many of the original pre 64 features was reintroduced with the M70 Classic.

    Good article on the M70 here....
    Winchester Model 70 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia