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Sentiax 01-22-2009 09:58 AM

I need advice on my first deer rifle
Hey everyone, as you can see I'm new to the forum and am also a new hunter. I just got my license a couple of days ago and I plan on starting with small game like squirrel and rabbit etc. I'm 18 and am attending Auburn University in Alabama. Deer hunting is huge around here and my birthday is coming up in March which means some extra moolah from the family. I'd like to buy a deer rifle with it. I'm paying for college out of my own pocket, so as you could probably guess I'm on a strict budget. 400$ is an absolute maximum, and I'd prefer to know if there are cheaper options. I also want a rifle that can take medium sized game animals like fox and coyote without damaging the pelt too much. Dick's Sporting Goods carry's a Scoped savage that comes in either .270 or .30-06 for 400$. I think that's a nice price for the inclusion of a scope. I just feel like it could be a little over powered, which is why I decided to ask. Anyone that knows of any better and cheaper options I would greatly appreciate your recomendations.

ipscshooter 01-22-2009 10:11 AM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
You probably won't find a lower price than that for a rifle/scope combo. The scopes that come with those combo packages aren't usually very good.

.270 and .30-06 are extremely popular cartridges for deer, and are versatile enough to tackle most other game animals in North America. Other cartridges you might want to consider for the chores you have described: .243, .25-06, .257 Roberts, 7mm-08, .308. You don't say whether you've got much experience with firearms. So, I don't know whether recoil may be an issue for you. To me, a .243 is a lot more fun to shoot, particularly in practice sessions at the range, than a .30-06.

Sentiax 01-22-2009 10:25 AM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
I'm a new hunter but I have a great deal of firearms experience. I've shot most types of rifles and military service weapons as well as some foreign assault rifles and the like. Recoil is no big deal, thanks for the consideration though. As for the not so great scope, I figured that would be the case but I just don't have the money to get a 100-200$ one so I'll just have to make do. I'm a pretty good shot and practice with rifles to the point of where I know how to compensate based on wind and distance like second nature for that particular gun. I'm definitely not world class or anything I just practice till I'm comfortable. Thanks for the info. More opinions welcome

jerry d 01-22-2009 10:29 AM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
Welcome to the site.There's alot of knoledgeable hunters here that are a wealth of information.
I just bought a Remington 700 ADL Synthetic w/a 3-9x40 scope @ Walmart for $447 plus a $40 rebate,total $407.Not a bad deal IMO.
I bought it in .243 cal. I'm using the gun for whitetails & ocasionally coyotes.I've never owned a Savage but some guys on this site like them.Another gun that I thought was a good value for the money was the Weatherby Vanguard,$400 but it didn't come with a scope.
Good luck in your purchase.

ipscshooter 01-22-2009 10:40 AM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
Another bolt action to consider is the new Marlin. I think the model number is XL-7. The local Academy's have them on sale for $279.99, and stock them in .270 and .30-06. That only leaves about a hundred bucks in the budget for scope and mounts though... again, a bit on the low end... I have heard that Marlin will be bringing out a short-action version chambered in the .308-based cartridges soon.

Good luck!

Sentiax 01-22-2009 10:48 AM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
That is a good deal. Ill have to check it out.

hossdaniels 01-22-2009 12:16 PM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
weatherby vanguard, remington 700 (NOT 710 or 770), maybe even a savage can be found for $400. Throw a cheap $30 scope on there untill you graduate. Dont spend more than that on the scope, unless you are going to spend over $200 on a decent scope. You will save $ in the long run.

Sentiax 01-22-2009 12:35 PM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
Thanks, yeah I'm looking at a savage for 400 w/scope at dick's. If I don't get one with a scope I'll probably just end up throwing this simmons 3-9x40 that's currently on my HMR on it.

mikybigbuck 01-22-2009 01:05 PM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
another idea would be the nef comes in alot of caliber choices and additional barrels can be purchased for $ 100 if you want to change....they are currently about 249 in wood and 259 in synthetic...7mm08 is my favorite short action caliber...its basicly a 243 ,with a little extra punch; but you can still shoot 100 grain comes with a scope mount, and you can pick up a decent scope (simmons, bushnell) at sportsman's guide for less than a $ some $20 weaver style rings, and you've got a good little gun for less than $400..i've got one in 45/70, that i use when i hunt in real thick stuff...ifi spent the 100 on the extra barrel,i would get the 7mm08...happy hunting..

xkmorris 01-22-2009 01:11 PM

RE: I need advice on my first deer rifle
You could also check your local pawn shops. Sometimes you can find a good gun in them. That is where I got my Winchester Model 70 3006 some 20 years ago for 275.00 with scope. Can't tell you how many deer I have killed with that gun.

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