starting out what type of rifle to use


Apr 11, 2002
I am wanting to get into the sport and was just wondering what type of rifle you would recomend. Please keep in mind that I also hunt in thickets and would like to use one gun all around. I also what to know what type of caliber you would choose. (.308 win, 7mm STW, and .300 winchester mag).

Thanks for any help

I would get a 300 win mag rem 700 sendero, you could probably find a used one in great condition for well under $1000.
Do you want to keep the gun or the gun and scope under $1000 ? It will be hard to get both for under that. I bought my M700 VS in 308 for $570 new and the Nikon 6.5 X 20 for $399 and the Leupold LR base for $18 and the Burris rings and spacers for $40 (because Dave informed me I still could not reach 1000 yds without the Burris Rings
). For a grand total of $1027.00.

I know the Sendero's (VS's big brother) are about $45-$50 more.

I was hoping to have both under 1,000. I was thinking of the .308 because I do not want to have to deal with the extra recoil.

Thanks for the input so far

I just picked up a Remington 700 VS in .308 for $650, and that was supposedly the LE discount. Add a set of bases and rings for ~$75 and you are up to $725. A decent scope that I like is the Tasco SS10x42 scope, a fixed 10x that is rugged as hell, for $300, so you are now at $1025, plus tax. Alternately, you could get a Savage 110FP or FVSS for probably at least $150 less than the Remington, probably more, though you will have to make up some of the difference w/ a decent trigger, as most people don't like the factory Savage trigger.


If you go with a Savage, you should be in great shape so far as money. If you don't like the trigger you can change it out for less than $100 at a later date.
An added bonus is that you can buy additional barrels in different calibers and switch them out all by yourself.
Every Savage I have ever seen at the range shoots really well. For you $1000 budget you can actually have quite a shooting system. Given the choice, my personal choice for one caliber would be a light barrel 7mm-08 with a regular hunting all weather stock, but would be quick to get additional heavy barrels in 223 and in 300 Win. Mag. as well as an Ultimate Sniper stock to make the rifle more comfortable for extended shooting.
I have not heard much about savages. I have read about the 110 and it seems to be a good gun, could you give me a little info on it. (what size groups are common.) I seem to like the heavier rifles around 9-12 pounds when fully scoped and loaded. I have heard little about the 7mm's other than the mags. If you could tell me a little more about the one that you mentioned it would be appreciated.

Thanks for the help

The Savage guns are getting a good bit more popular w/ the varmint crowd. Head on over to the Go Go Varmint Go board for more opinions if you want. The out-of-the-box accuracy of the darned things is about enough to overcome my dislike of the butt-ugly bolt and the cheap plastic stock on the FV models (IMHO, compared to the HS Precision stock on a 700VS).

The Savages are reputed to be pretty easy to change barrels on, and from what I hear, the problem of bolt face size that is an issue on say, a Remington, isn't a big deal on a Savage as the bolt face/head is changeable too.

Most of McMillans stocks can be adapted to a Savage easily, as they have fairly similar receiver shapes.

Another place to read up on the Savages would be at, and look up the 'Ghost Dancer' project they have going there. I think they started w/ a 110 or 10 FV in .260 Remington, which has pretty good bullets w/ high BC available, mild recoil, excellent accuracy and good barrel life.

Alternately, Savage has another of their 'package' guns available, kind of like their specials you see at Wal-Mart or other stores, but for LR work at the following:




You could use the 10x42SS in the thickets as it will focus down to close range, but the field of view is narrow.

The Savages are great shooters. However, if you want to get the rifle rebarreled later get a Rem 700. Another bonus for the Rem 700 is that a gunsmith can rework the trigger for a very reasonable price.

As far as caliber I would go with 308 and limit my range on big game. Although it's been done 800 yards is pushing it a little far for a 308. But the 308 will be easier and cheaper to practice with compared to the 300win or 7stw. You want to develop good form which is harder to do under recoil. When you wear out the 308 you can move up to a magnum.
You can get a Rem .308 VLS for $549 Burris signature series 6-24 for $569. Just a little over but..... GREAT BEGINNER SETUP. I started with a 308 and now have been over taken by the disease!!!!
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR> The Savages are great shooters. However, if you want to get the rifle rebarreled later get a Rem 700. Another bonus for the Rem 700 is that a gunsmith can rework the trigger for a very reasonable price.

Have to disagree on a couple of points here. One, in my experience, Remington triggers don't usually need 'reworked', just a bit of adjustment, which most people that are half-ways competent w/ mechanical things (i.e. able to reload your own shells, for example) should be able to accomplish on their own, given a bit of time to do it right. Secondly, and this is what I have heard, since I admit to not having a Savage myself, but I was under the impression that if anything, Savage rifles were even easier to rebarrel and properly headspace than a Remington action. Correct me if I'm wrong here, cuz it wouldn't be the first time


You're right - there's nothing wrong with the stock Rem trigger. However, for me it was more then worth the $25 I spent to have it stoned, polished, adjusted, set to 2.25 lbs, and loctited. The improvement is obvious. It especially makes a difference when you're shooting standing. On the bench a little creep isn't as big a deal. It's one of those things where what you have seems really good until you compare it side by side with something better. My friend thought his Timney trigger was the best thing since sliced bread until he tried my Jewell. Now he has a Jewell also.
One thing I will say is that the Factory Rem trigger is acceptable, while the Savage isn't.

Of course any good smith can rebarrel a Savage. However, if I was going to pay for a rebarrel job I would go ahead and get the action trued and maybe upgrade a few parts at the same time. I would go with the Rem 700 because most smiths are very familar with the Rem, there are more options (barrels, stocks, etc.), and the resale value is going to be higher for a custom Rem than a custom Savage. It's really a toss-up though so if somebody likes Savages they shouldn't hesitate to go with them.
Just a quick comment.
It takes just about as long to change a Savage barrel as it's going to for me to type this. All it takes is a barrel vise, and a barrel nut wrench. And, about 15 minutes.
Barrels for a Savage are completely finished. There is NO machineing like there is on a remchester. Gunsmiths like the rem's cause you need to use a lathe. More manhours at X dollars per.

Good shooting.
C'ya, John.
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