older marine wanting to get back into shooting

sbjones

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2014
Messages
8
Location
Southern wisconsin
just the tittle says. I loved shooting back in the mid 90's (when I was on active duty) and even got a chance to shoot on the marine pistol/rifle team. loved shooting every day at ranges of 500 yards with my m16 and did pretty darn good(in the top 20 when all said and done). so I do have the basics of shooting longer ranges.

I am wanting to buy and set up a budget rifle for hunting here in Wisconsin. most of my shooting will be either across bean fields or at targets. my range would be probably out to about 500 yards depending on the field. in the cold and wind. but when the chance comes up i would like to shoot longer distances.

so far digging over the web here for a couple years, I have figured out that I like the Remington 700 sps varmit in .308 or the 700 long range in 7mm, not sure about caliber just yet. at first I know that I will not be doing my own loads. so over counter loads will be all I can shoot for a while. I am doing more and more digging on optics, i have only shot iron sighted m16's prior to this. i just need to find a stock something like the m16, love the pistol grip design, but want a bolt action set up. no ar style rifle, to darn expensive !!!!!

so my question here is, which caliber for hunting mostly deer and maybe some predators (coyotes etc) i would like an all around good caliber. i don't particularly care about keeping the pelts. like stated above, i like the .308 but 7mm is looking better and better. remember it must be an over the counter ammo

also, looking into optics. i have learned some but need to dig more and actually get my eyes onto one. but for the ranges stated above, what size optics do you guys recommend?

i am new to this site, and am digging more and more into the search button. sorry for the newbie questions.

thanks,
 

sbjones

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2014
Messages
8
Location
Southern wisconsin
.308 is what I was really leaning towards. price of ammo, availability of ammo etc.

now I am doing more home work in the optics area. I really like the vortex set up. plus they are very close to where I am located.
 

JSHou

Member
Joined
Nov 10, 2014
Messages
18
Location
Denver Metro, CO
+1 .308 My 700 can hit consistently at 700-800 yards, even in strong winds across the grasslands. I suspect the loss in accuracy after that is shooter error.

Vortex makes good glass and the prices are very reasonable. I also have heard great things about their CS (though I've personally never needed it). If you aren't used to shooting with a scope yet, I would recommend mil-mil (reticle-turrets). It makes corrections a lot easier when your reticle works in the same units as your turrets. When I started, mil turrets were a little less common, and not knowing any better, I got MOA turrets with a Mildot reticle. It's a little more thinking when you're dialing adjustments that way.
 

Unofficial Gun Addict (UGA)

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2014
Messages
794
Location
Southern Idaho
Sbjones... Glad to hear that you are looking at returning to shooting. It's a wonderful pastime which can provide a great deal of pleasure over many years! After reading your post, and the accompanying responses, I find that I also agree with going with the 308. Both calibers you mentioned have their merits... And there are times when I still consider the possibility of picking up a 7mm mag, however, that being said, I'm very happy with the 308s that I own and in possessing them, it made the decision between the 7mm mag and the 300 win mag pretty simple (went with the 300 so that I could reach out a bit further with a bit more energy than my 308s).

The main reason I'd suggest the 308 is that your intention isn't to reload and because you are already proficient and familiar with the platform. There's tons of great ammo and rifle choices out there for this caliber... And if you start collecting brass, it's so easy to come by that if later you change your mind, deciding it's time to start reloading... You'll cut cost dramatically in both brass you've collected and in the amount of powder required to charge a cartridge. The end result is that you'll be able to afford to spend more time behind your rifle! Also if you end up thinking about moving to the magnums, the 300 win mag or wsm make great 2nd rifles as you can share the same bullets for each gun and if brass gets hard to find for the 300... Well, you can just reload up a batch of 308s.

One thing that I would be remiss if I didn't mention, is that if you are really drawn to the thought of owning a 7mm mag down the road at some point, you could always start with a 7-08, which is another outstanding cartridge. Both the 7mm and 308 bullets have options for great BCs and if you choose to reload the 7-08, you could also neck down 308 brass. From the store... I find where I live, 308 ammo is more plentiful, but the 7-08 is a fairly common cartridge so it shouldn't be too hard to find.

Anyway you go... Good luck Sb. Happy to have you back!

Oh... Almost for got the scope. I really like the Vortex Viper I got this last spring. I've always been a Bushnell elite glass man as they just look really good to my eye, but after much debate, I broke down and bought a Viper Pst, ffp 6-24x50. It's by far my favorite scope. I did initially buy the Vortex Razor HD, but I sold it due to weight, and went with the PST which is lighter. I couldn't be more pleased. I also recommend mil/mil... But Moa/Moa would also be great if you prefer those calculations... Please just be wary of mixing mil/Moa, or Moa/mil... Makes for some ridiculous conversions when you get out to distance!

Have fun!
 

sbjones

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2014
Messages
8
Location
Southern wisconsin
thanks guys for all the replies. I am really starting to dig into all this information. scopes, bi pods, etc.

but now I have a question. (sorry another one) I am looking into stocks. I like the m-16 style stocks (ar style) I have found a bunch out there, thanks to this site. but I can not figure out if I want wood, composite etc. let me know what you all think of the pro's and cons of either. and along with that I am starting to understand bedding etc. so I have a bunch more to figure out before I truly start buying. I want to use my money wisely and not buy some random stuff.

thanks again
 

JSHou

Member
Joined
Nov 10, 2014
Messages
18
Location
Denver Metro, CO
I prefer a synthetic/composite stock. When I take my rifle hunting, it's up in the mountains, so the weight I shave off is pretty beneficial. I have enough other gear I'm carrying (on my person and on my rifle) that taking a couple pounds off is worthwhile for me.

Keep in mind what your intent is. I can't shoot more than about 40-50 rounds in a day before my shoulder gives up, but that's because my rifle (without scope, bipod, etc) is about 7.5lb. If you plan on long days at the range, a heavier stock will suit you. This can be wood or weighted composites. This can also be addressed with muzzle brakes/suppressors, but that's not something I've invested in (yet).

Some synthetic stocks can't be milled either, so that can cause problems down the line. Many can, just something to check as you're shopping around.

It sounds like you're doing your research though, so I'm sure whatever you settle on will work well.
 

7magcreedmoor

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 23, 2012
Messages
718
Location
Lebanon County PA
A less expensive stock option is Boyd's Tacticool. A laminated wood stock with a more vertical grip gives good hand position like the pistol grip on your M16/M4, but still has the open top I find necessary for fast bolt cycling. Being wood, doing the bedding/fitting to your action is not a hard DIY project. I just built this Savage in 280Ackley.
 

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Dale700

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2013
Messages
59
Location
Missouri
First welcome back . I too am old school and have picked up lots of good information on this site .
As for the first question I personally shoot the 700 long range in 7mm mag , but I will tell you that the recoil will get your attention without a muzzle brake . As for your situation , the 308 is a good choice due to the plethora of bullets and loaded ammo available .
As for the second question leupold is a very good scope in the vx3 line is still a good buy and though I don't have one at the time , I too have beem researching vortex and like what I see in the viper line .
As for the stock question I am very biased on the side of the synthetic , they don't move due to moisture holding zero lots better and they will take a beating and keep on ticking. There are lots of good ones out there , I like HS Precision and McMillan, but the long range came with the Bell & Carlson M 2 and I have to say I do like it a lot .
Hope I helped .gun)
 

ltcjwb

Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2012
Messages
24
Location
AZ, out of TX by way of CO
Best bang for the buck: Remington 700 Long Range, .30-06; +-$800. 26", 1:10 barrel will handle anything up to HSM 210 Berger HVLD, good for anything short of Grizzly Bears at 500 over 500 yards, and should give slightly better than advertised velocity. .30-06 ammo is available anywhere, anytime, just like .308, which I would prefer for the slightly lighter recoil, but it is not available in this particular rifle. Savage 11 Long Range Hunter, .308, +/-$1000. 26", 1:10 barrel, same capabilities, but also has an adjustable brake and adjustable comb. My preference would go to the Remington, but only because I have owned 2, and never had a Savage.
 
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