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7mm mag or 30-06

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7mm mag or 30-06

Old 04-03-2013, 04:28 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 64
Default 7mm mag or 30-06

looking to buy a new gun (just cause I want one lol) but was considering either a 30-06 or 7mm mag. I think im leaning to the 7 because of the much flatter shooting but was wondering your opinions?

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Old 04-03-2013, 07:14 PM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Allegan, MI
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It all depends on what you already have and what you plan to hunt in the future, as well as how far you think you are capable of shooting. The 30-06 is capable of killing anything on this continent out to pretty good distances and is used regularly for everything up to the big bears. If you want to reach out somewhat further, then you may want to go the 7 mag route.
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Old 04-03-2013, 07:25 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 79

Hello NSpeziale,

Buying a new gun because you "want one" is always a good reason. It's been the reason for all of mine!

I had this same dilemma when I bought my first new hunting rifle many years ago and I chose to go with a 30-06. At that time, all of my family and friends used a 30-06, so that's where I received most of the advice regarding what caliber I should go with for a deer/elk/antilope/black bears. Due to it's popularity and the fact that it's been around for over 100 years, ammo is plentiful and easy to find. 30-06 ammo is a little cheaper than 7 mm mag and you can get heavier bullets, up to 220 gr, vs 175 with 7mm mag. Lastly, if this matters to you, a 30 cal bullet can punch a slightly bigger hole.

The 7mm has been around for a little over 50 years, so it's established a firm foothold in the market, too. Ammo for the 7 mm is generally a little more expensive, so that's something to consider. The 7mm does shoot a little faster and flatter than a 30-06, especially with bullets 165 gr or less. Due to it's velocity, holdover can be less with a 7 mm mag than a 30-06. Many people think the 7 mm mag is a great all-around rifle cartridge. Check out the following Chuck Hawks articles on the 7mm mag for more info to help you with this decision:

Personally, I liked the idea of a faster bullet with a lot of energy that resulted in less holdover at longer distances. I don't shoot at animals further than 350 yards, but that's mostly because of my own limitations, not the caliber or rifle. However, I enjoy trying to punch paper and distances further than that.

All of that being said, when I recently got the chance to have a custom rifle built, I decided to go with a 7 mm mag, largely because I already had a 30-06 and I liked the ballistics of the 7mm mag. I haven't received the rifle yet, so I can't comment on how it shoots. I hope to have it in a few months.

There are several other guys on this forum with much more knowledge than me on this topic. I'm sure they'll chime in and help you with this decision.

I think either caliber would make a great hunting rifle. If you're interested in a magnum, you should take a look at a 300 WSM. It has some advantages worth investigating.

Good Luck!

Last edited by jfarleyx; 04-03-2013 at 07:43 PM.
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Old 04-03-2013, 07:37 PM
Giant Nontypical
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5,130

Tough question, but I lean toward the 7MM RM (proud owner of a Sako A7 Stainless).

I was surprised to see Topgun seccumb to it's prowess....................

However, if manufactured ammo continues to be in question, .30-06 ammo will be easier to find in most cases.
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Old 04-04-2013, 02:32 AM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: west central wi USA
Posts: 2,242

If you are using flatter trajectory as your measure, you'll be disappointed. Comparing similar sized bullets in both calibers, there isn't enough difference in trajectory at hunting ranges between the two of them to account for any difference in hold-over.
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Old 04-04-2013, 03:47 AM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 5,425

Not knowing anything about you, what you will be hunting, your experience or skills with a rifle it is impossible to give an educated opinion...
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Old 04-04-2013, 09:13 AM
Typical Buck
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 647

Very slight advantage to the 7mm ballistics and distance-wise, but you need to be able to shoot beyond 300 yards to really notice it. And a slight advantage to the 30-06 if you do not reload and will need to rely on store bought ammo. If you handload and all else equal...7mm would be my choice.

Last edited by emtrescue6; 04-04-2013 at 09:16 AM.
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Old 04-04-2013, 05:19 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Allenton Wis.
Posts: 186

There is so little difference between the two it doesn't matter. If you reload you can make the 06 all but the same. A 7 Mag has higher pressures than the 06 at maximum loads If all else was equal and ran the same pressures in reloads the velocity would be the same with less powder burned too. A 30-06 doesn't get the nod for higher pressure cause of all the old guns out there and noone wants to run pressures to 54k... and if the .270 Win can do 54k so can the 06.
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Old 04-05-2013, 11:27 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: SW Montana
Posts: 550

I've had rifles in both .30-06 and 7mm Rem mag. I have killed elk and many other deer to elk size animals with each of them. Put the bullet in the right place, and the animal won't know which rifle the bullet came out of.

A stainless/synthetic Rem 700 in 7mm RM is my current wet weather back up rifle for deer, elk, or whatever hunting.
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Old 04-05-2013, 02:19 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: michigan
Posts: 107

kinna have both cals , problem is the recoil of the 7 ,after 5 shots or so, the 7 goes back in its case u really have to shoot one before u buy , of all my rifles ,and i do have 38 , the 7 is the least used,good luc
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