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Help me pick a new deer rifle

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Help me pick a new deer rifle

Old 04-30-2007, 08:52 AM
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Default Help me pick a new deer rifle

Hey there... I need some opinions on a new deer rifle.

I mean there's like, 9000 different varieties of deer rifles in all flavors for deer hunting. I want a light, quick, bolt action with a 3x9 scope.

I hunt in the thick heavy woods of the Nat'l Forest of Virginia with a trusty old Marlin 30-30 which I love using. It's got plain open sights and is real quick to bring up on target. I won't part with it... I am just looking for something to accompany the 30-30.

Recoil sometimes is not an issue, but a heavy loaded 30-06 would be probably the same (or more) as a 12GA with a slug. I'm not a wuss, but my shoulder doesn't appreciate the bash and smash of a high recoil rifle or shotgun after a few rounds of practice/sighting in.


- I still plan on hunting the thick woods with the 30-30 but will also hunt a farm field from time to time and need something with a 3x9 scope that will be double the range of a 30-30, and still be light and quick to aquire the target.

- I'm not planning on going to Colorado and knockinga Bighorn Ram off a rocky ledge at 600 yards, nor flying to Alaska to take down a Grizzly. (no offense to big game hunters...)

- I'm somewhat of an old-school traditionalist with firearms (hence my love for an open sighted old 30-30).

- Primary use for the lightweight bolt action rifle is whitetail deer overlooking a farm field. Maximum shot could be 150-200 yards at best.

My personal thoughts: I am looking at short action bolts, like a .308 or maybe a .243. All my rifle cleaning supplies, rods, patches, bore snakes, etc... is for .30 cal rifles. What is the general opinion of the .308 rifle?


Butch A.

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Old 04-30-2007, 09:00 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

Butch, I shoot Ruger.243 and Ruger6.5mmSwede, but I see you are interested in the .308, I would choose the 7mm-08, JMO.
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Old 04-30-2007, 09:24 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

The .308 is a great round. I hunted with it for years accurate and will get the job done. Rebel is right if you want JUST a deer rifle I would suggest a 7mm-08 or 25-06. I just replaced my .308 with a 30-06 Saturday. Not because my .308 wouldnt do the job but it was an older gun I wanted to retire and I just like the 30-06's ability to hunt anything in North America. Now that being said if I were just using it for southern white tail (Georgia). Yea 30-06 is actually overkill. I've laid down deer with a 30-30 too. We all know that once their dead ..... their dead. My only question to ask is this.... Is this rifle ONLY for white tail deer or will you want to use it for hog or bear (not evengrizz mind you, but your average appalachan blacke)?
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Old 04-30-2007, 09:33 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

I would get a 7mm-08, 25-06, or 270 for what you are wanting. Im actually lookin to replace my 30-06 with a 25-06. I like the flatter shooting and i have a 300 Ultra Mag now for anything the 25-06 wont take care of.
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Old 04-30-2007, 09:35 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

If you don't mind a long action I would look at a 25.06 - perfect rifle for fields - I have one in the tikka and it performs everytime

I also have a .243 and it will stop a deer in it's tracks at moderate ranges

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Old 04-30-2007, 09:35 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

Go with the 308 and don't look back. You already have all the cleaning supplies for that size and it does not have much recoil. It will take a deer well beyond your stated 200 yards too.

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Old 04-30-2007, 09:37 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

Thanks guys....

I plan on using it for whitetail deer. If I see a bear in the Nat'l Forest, then it'll be a dead bear! But the primary and sole use of the rifle is for whitetail deer.

Here's all I have
Remington 870 Express 12GA --- everything.
Marlin 30-30 --- whitetail deer.
Reflex Highlander compound bow --- whitetail deer.

Butch A.

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Old 04-30-2007, 10:13 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

308win, I own a 7mm08 in a browning Abolt but I'd get a 308 just for ammunition availabilty. I have a hard time finding 7mm08 sometimes, rarely see any boxes of 25-06. But 308 is everywhere, even walmart/kmart.

Rifle wise their's alot of great choices, I like the Browning Abolt micro medallion. About the same size and weight as your Marlin. I also havea Tikka T3 Lite, in 270win that I got this past spring, so far I love it. Tad bit heavier than the Browning maybe half pound or less, very smooth and awesome trigger. I had a savage 308, Nice rifle very ugly, but shot awesome. Ended up sellin it and buying god knows what. Also had a Ruger 77. Didn't care for it that much so I traded it off, Nothing wrong with it, just didn't like it.

I would buy less expensive rifles and much better scopes. But if you can buy the best of both go right ahead. I'm about to put a 400dollar leupold on 200dollar savage 17hmr.
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Old 04-30-2007, 10:36 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

I would suggest .270, .308 or 7mm-08.
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Old 04-30-2007, 11:01 AM
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Default RE: Help me pick a new deer rifle

For my money, I'd buy a Remington Model 700 Mountain LSS chambered in 7mm-08. It's a handsome rifle, it only weighs 6.5 pounds, and the 7mm-08 is an excellent cartridge.

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