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Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

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Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

Old 08-31-2004, 06:23 PM
Giant Nontypical
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Join Date: Feb 2003
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Default RE: Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

Most people can more easily lose 5 lbs off their bodies that they won't have to carry around than shave another pound off their rifle.
That is the truth. I prefer a heavier rifle because I can hold it steady. I remember one pleasant hike one early AM when by the time we got on top ..I couldn't hold my lightweight rifle steady until i stopped puffing. At that time I thought any legal animal coming thru here is going to be safe at any normal shooting range. Sure was nice walking up the mountain with that lightweight though.
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Old 08-31-2004, 06:49 PM
Boone & Crockett
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Location: Wall SD USA & Jamestown ND
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Default RE: Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

I prefer the heavier rifles but thats because I seldom hike around carrying a rifle. We either set in Ambush points or use horses for transporting gear and game. If I were going to do much foot work though I would be looking at rifles like the Model Seven or other lightweight guns. I do have a Savage scout rifle thats not bad to carry. It is in 7mm-08.
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Old 09-01-2004, 07:34 AM
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Hampstead, Maryland
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Default RE: Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

I pondered the idea of getting one of those ultra light big game rifles, for years. Before I bought one, I got to the age where I limit how much I walk anyway. Ride the horse up to within a half mile of where I want to hunt, tie him off and walk a bit. Scout on the horse. That said, I believe that for a younger hunter, in shape hunter, the light weight, so called "mountain rifle" can be a very good thing. Carrying a lighter rifle certainly does make humping a bit easier. However, you have to treat most light weight rifles a little differently on the range, if you want to maintain accuracy. Most light weight rifles have trimmed "fat" off the barrel and therefore will heat up quicker. At the range, shooting a rifle hot causes rapid barrel erosion. Also, your shot at that trophy will be from a cold barrel. You must learn the discipline, at the range, of firing the cold barrel one time and then waiting 20 minutes before again firing. By doing this, you will find out how that rifle will shoot cold, which is again, the way it will be when you have that once in a lifetime chance at a world class trophy "whatever". Easiest way to maintain that "cold barrel shots only" discipline, is to take at least two other rifles to the range and play with them during the waiting period. Even if you shoot slow fire with a hunting rifle, shot strings will change the point of impact as the barrel heats up, this is amplified when you are using a light weight rifle. The second big issue, is whether that ultra light will settle enough, in your hands, to get an accurate shot off. When you are climbing and pumped up, by the sight of game, your heart rate is elevated and you may be breathing in an irregular manner. Consider that a standard weight rifle may feel more stable, then would an ultra light. Try jogging up and down, behind the shooting positions at the range. Jog while carrying some weight and do that until you feel a bit fatigued. Then, go to the shooting position and take a target under fire. Is it difficult to get the rifle steady, after you have worked a bit? Do you see any difference in the way a standard weight rifle settles down on target, as opposed to the way an ultra light rifle settles down? How these questions are answered may help you to decide whether the ultra light rifle is for you, or not!
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Old 09-01-2004, 08:33 AM
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Default RE: Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

Most people can more easily lose 5 lbs off their bodies that they won't have to carry around than shave another pound off their rifle
Briman, thats true, but from someone that lost 40lbs, it didn't make a difference on my shoulder with my heavy contour rifle. I have hunted alot of places from the west to NF, and its all different.
Old 09-01-2004, 04:10 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Colorado
Posts: 411
Default RE: Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

Hi OE:

I do a pack-in hunt at about 11,000', and have always preferred a heavier rifle. I take a Sako .416 Rem, app 11 lbs, and don't mind the weight at all. However, at least for the time being, I have youth on my side.

I like to shoot ALOT during the off season, with my hunting rifle, and although I have two compacts, I don't like waiting for the barrel to cool. Also, I have a favorite load with a .416 300 gr Barnes at 2900 fps, and I don't want any part of that in a compact.

EKM, please don't scare us with such thoughts!

Anyone in Denver looking for a good deal on a compact, Galyans in Broomfield has a Ruger .243 & .260, laminate/stainless compact for $380, NIB, one of each.

Good luck on all your hunts this year!

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Old 09-01-2004, 06:08 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2004
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Default RE: Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

Most people can more easily lose 5 lbs off their bodies that they won't have to carry around than shave another pound off their rifle.
I wish i had a dollar every time i heard someone say that!!!

As soon as i figure out how to spread my rifle "thinly all over my body", i'll agree with your theory! Untill then, make my rifle "light" please!!

Drilling Man

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Old 09-04-2004, 11:45 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
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Default RE: Light vs Average weight hunting rifles

Use your current rifle, have chrestensen arms put a lightweight barrel on it. also if weight is your concern use a ruger #1 you eliminate the action that way. put a carbon barrel on it shave down the stock just a little and youve got a light weight rifle, any caliber you choose(no long action,short action decision), and because of the lack of action a 26 inch barrel will still be shorter than most bolt guns w/ 22 inch barrels.
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