One Rifle!!!


September 15, 2004, 08:11 PM
Im not a big rifle guy although i do like the black rifles and kinda like the idea of sniper style rifles.I want one rifle that i can use for shooting alot at the range,and if needed to save my familys hide.I already have a defensive remington 870 for home defense and a few 1911s but would still like a rifle just in case.Im big on the KISS outlook to,nothin to fancy,nothin to expensive,just a all round fun shooter and something that could be taken real seriously if needed.What would be your choice?

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September 15, 2004, 08:26 PM
Remington Mod 700 or Winchester Mod 70. Get it in .308. Glass it good and have fun.

September 15, 2004, 08:45 PM
If you're unlikely to shoot further than 200 yards, one of the most economical choices would be a lever-action .30-30 rifle. Simple, very tough, a round as powerful as an AK-47 (or a bit better), ammo available at every Wal-Mart and country store in the country... what's not to like?

Alternatively, you could go for an SKS, which is even cheaper, and military surplus-type ammo is very low-cost in bulk from any number of suppliers.

September 15, 2004, 08:48 PM
Savage 10FP in .308 would be my choice. Light years better than the Remington out of the box. Make it even better by putting as good of optics as you can possibly afford. My choice, if the tupperware stock doesn't do it for you, would be either Choate's Ultimate Varmint (synthetic) or Boyds' Thumbhole Varmiter (laminated wood). A few friends have gone with the first and been happy, my personal rifle is in the Boyds'. Go here for more info:


September 15, 2004, 09:06 PM
one of the most economical choices would be a lever-action .30-30 rifle

I disagree. :) .30-30 is expensive compared to .308 and even .30-06 (the latter two have military surplus available).

I'd go with an AK. Good mag capacity, reliable, cheap to feed, and fun to shoot. Plus, they are evil-looking. ;)

September 15, 2004, 09:13 PM
I think Ed's advice is the most cogent yet. However, I'd like to specific "glass" as at least a Leupold VX-II, Bushnell Elite 4200, or better.

September 15, 2004, 09:43 PM
I think you should choose the calibre and action type that you want first to narrow the field a little !

For a simple, cheap and solid rifle - yet very serious - that is going to be used for the range, how about a bolt-action military surplus rifle ? In this country the .303 SMLE is very common. Perfect for a 'just in case rifle'.

If I lived in the USA, I would be thinking about semi-autos though.

Of course I also think that a 30-30 or a scoped bolt-action in .308 or 30-06 would be excellent rifles to buy also.

September 15, 2004, 10:07 PM
I don't own one and don't have plans too (right now), but if I had to have one rifle to do it all (fun and defense), I would invest in an M-14/M1A. Great 'sniper' weapon (not that it would be used as such in reality), great for target shooting, semi-auto with 20 rnd mag of reach out and touch someone/penetrate through whatever .308 will help keep the family alive, and toss in a 5 rounder to hunt whatever you want (as long as it is not small). Add a .22 rifle or at least pistol to your collection for plinking/survival hunting/teaching the kids to shoot and you have complete KISS battery with your shotty and .45s. Alternatively for less money, a M1 Garand or Fal/G3/Cetme could be pressed into a similar role. Oh, if you want it black, get an FAL or get a polymer stock or buy some paint.

September 15, 2004, 10:48 PM
To get a good recomendation, I suggest a little soul searching to determine your priorites. What do you most want out of your rifle? In rifles as in anything else, the "jack of all trades" is versatile, but inferior to a specialized piece in any given situation.

What do you most want to do, what do you most see yourself doing, and most importantly.. what does that little voice deep down inside say? :)

FROM YOUR DESCRIPTION.. a paper-puncher that can be called on to do defensive work AND "precision marksmanship"... I'd lean towards a 16-20" AR platform with a flat top upper, free-floated handguard, and good barrel. The shorty Bushmaster varminters with fixed A2 stocks come immediately to mind, but there's a lot of wiggle room for personal preference in that recommendation.

This is why --

1. You mention you like "black rifles" and the AR has the coolness factor going for it. Talk about "Iwannacoolgunvirus" all you want, but when you lay down your hard-earned money for what is basically a toy, then yeah... listen to what just plain gets your giggles going.

2. surplus .223 is relatively inexpensive for plinking. Match quality .223 is also readily available, so you can also do your precision target work with the same gun.

3. The semi-auto action makes it suitable for defensive use, provided you don't get too crazy with greeblies.

4. Flat top allows you to quickly go between a regular glass scope and a closer-range red dot type optic.

Given that your list doesn't include hunting where ethical kills are an issue, the .223 should do you fine. Given your interest in target work, the AR platform will provide better practical accuracy than most AK platforms. Given your interest in a defensive arm, the AR will be more suited to the task than a glassed bolt gun.


September 16, 2004, 01:31 AM
For a gun legal in every state including Maryland, that won't be likely to fall under any restrictions soon, I'd recommend a heavy-barrel Remington 700 in .308... and ditto the recommendations for optics.

September 16, 2004, 01:41 AM
i second kaylee's suggestion.


Phantom Warrior
September 16, 2004, 02:08 AM
I would invest in an M-14/M1A. Great 'sniper' weapon (not that it would be used as such in reality)

Reconditioned M-14s modified to semi-auto only are regularly issued to snipers/designated marksman in U.S. military units. I've seen a couple even in just the Yahoo! and Star Tribune news pictures. The M-14/M1A is definitely used a sniper weapon in reality.

September 16, 2004, 02:14 AM
you can hunt with it
its accurate out to at least 600 yards (if you are)
Its semi auto for fending off the evil hordes
Great all around rifle and the.308 will definitely put 'em down

September 16, 2004, 06:19 AM
Thanks guys,i do love the m-14s and m-1as,thats definately my favorite rifle but a bit on the expensive side.I kinda want a semi auto more so then a bolt.I do however like the brit enfields.Now im thinkin an sks and a enfield since both would be around 400 bucks together,both are surplus ammo heavy,and would fill all my needs.Im also already familiar with the sks,i had one when i was eighteen,it was my first rifle and sadly my last till now .Eventually i will own a m1a but im in the middle of moving from communist occupied MD to SC and want something inexpensive and fun but able to fill a defensive role,a package so to say to go with my 870 and my 1911s.Thanks guys for your time and your help!!!!!!!!

September 16, 2004, 07:26 AM

You might want to have a look at CMP Garands. These can be had for 500, fire 30.06 and definately have a coolness of history behind them.

I have a Rem 700bdl in .06 with 3X9 Nilon glass and it is very accurate out of the box. My Garand is AWESOME. Wont go wrong with either one.

I had a Russian SKS and really like that piece too. Fun to shoot, ammo was cheap...however, I sold it and dont really regret it.

September 16, 2004, 07:50 AM
JMURMAN,dont you have to belong to something to be able to get cmp garands?I do like the garands to!

September 16, 2004, 08:40 AM
readyfire, if you are a veteran and have a DD214 you can bypass the "club & match rule" check it out. Give them a call for a brochure. I ordered mine and it took about 3 weeks or so to get mine.

September 16, 2004, 08:54 AM
OOOOOO i'm a vet, tell me more about this bypass stuff. The only reason i dont have a garand yet is cuse i dont feel like dealing with the CMP. Give who a call?

September 16, 2004, 09:13 AM
call CMP for a rules list and requirements

September 16, 2004, 09:18 AM
Well i'll retract that last post. I do want to get into the CMP but just not right now. But I want to look at getting a garand now.:rolleyes: :D

September 16, 2004, 09:59 PM
"Reconditioned M-14s modified to semi-auto only are regularly issued to snipers/designated marksman in U.S. military units. I've seen a couple even in just the Yahoo! and Star Tribune news pictures. The M-14/M1A is definitely used a sniper weapon in reality."

I am well aware of the current M1A use in the military, my point is that unless any of us are posting from Iraq or Afghanistan, in all likelyhood the gun would not actually serve that in that capacity. ie. no sniping at home (our reality).

September 16, 2004, 10:54 PM
For a good, tough semi-auto in .308, check out the Saiga in that caliber. I have the 22" barrel version with wood furniture, and it's as accurate as any Garand I've shot. Built on the AK action, too, so you know it's going to be rock-solid reliable. Best of all, it's about $300 to $350 most places! Great value for money, IMHO...

Doug S
September 16, 2004, 11:21 PM
Get an SKS. Excellent all purpose rifle, & you just can't beat the price. Ammo is cheap, & my Yugo's have both been 100% reliable. I might pick up another SKS at an upcoming show. Get them while their hot. You never know, if the ban comes back they will be added to the list.

September 17, 2004, 11:55 AM
A Garand from CMP.

-Powerful, easily available round.
-At $500, they instantly go up in value (check
-You can use it for service rifle competitions
-Easy and inexpensive to keep on reloading when shooting at hordes of mutant zombies (if you HAD to shoot 200 rounds, which would be faster - enblock clips or reloading magazines?)

Downsides include weight and difficulty mounting a scope.

A second choice and almost as useful is a .308 bolt action with a good scope. Although I'm not sure if there are many competitions where you can compete with this kind of rifle if that's of any interest to you.

September 17, 2004, 10:08 PM
If I knew I was going to use a rifle to defend my life in close quarters, I'd want a reliable semi auto 357 or 44 Magnum carbine with as short a barrel as possible.

For targets 50+ meters away, I'd probably want something more like an AR, but close up, I'd rahter have a bigger diameter bullet.

Actually, I'd take a shotgun over any rifle I can think of to use inside 15 to 25 meters.

If you are highly unlikely to use it for personal defense close up, I'd probably look into a 308 bolt rifle of some sort.

September 17, 2004, 10:33 PM
Well, is that enough info forya??? A lot of good suggestions there. Several of them got me thinking. :D :neener:

September 18, 2004, 12:05 AM
I second the Saiga suggestion. You can get it in .223 (like mine) or in .308 if you want to hunt large game with it. Since it is an AK it is plenty durable and won't jam if it gets a bit dirty, and my .223 is plenty accurate. Best of all is the price - mine cost $200.

4v50 Gary
September 18, 2004, 12:08 AM
AR-15 type firearm. Change the upper to have "another" gun. Varmint one day, short barrel carbine the next, pistol caliber carbine, regular 20" bbl rifle. Simple and easy to use. Women enjoy them because they're accurate and low recoil. Kids love them. It's a gun for the family. :)

September 18, 2004, 07:57 AM
Were I able to do it all again and my intention was to own only one high power rifle, I'd get a quality 30.06 or .270 bolt action, spend twice the amount of the gun on a scope and mounts, then set up a reloading station for it. You could load for target, varmit, long range, or heavy duty hunting.


September 18, 2004, 08:29 AM
I use a 30-30 for this (M-94). Very cheap to load. I use cast bullets at 1600 fps. Easy on the shooter, easy on your ears, deadly on deer, and 300 yard hits on man size targets are not a problem.

This is a personal protection arm, a woods hunting arm, and one that is fun to fire.

They carry easy, store easy, and load easy. The only change I've made to mine is the rear sight, replaced it with a Lyman 66.

September 19, 2004, 12:16 AM
I currently own a few rifles, and I have owned alot of others and shot many more.
Having said that, I would have to say that the most fun rifle I have is my Finnish M-39 Mosin Nagant. It is extremely well crafted, steeped in history, and deadly accurate. It fires a powerful, inexpensive round and I can pop clay pigeons with it at 200 yards. Mind you, my eyesight sucks and I can just barely see a clay pigeon at that range, but I can hit it. At least with that rifle. (Though not with any other to date.)
I can't really explain it. The heft and balance are just perfect for me.
It is not only an instrument of fun, but also an instrument of war. The Mosin Nagant started service in 1891 and has been in use somewhere in the world constantly ever since. It has seen combat in three centuries. Over 100 years, and there are no doubt still a bunch of them seeing use in Afghanistan or somewhere as we speak. You have to be doing something right to make it that long.
I love all guns. I love the simplicity, reliability, and durability of the AK. I love the FAL because it is just an awesome combination of a powerful round and firepower. I love the Garand, Springfield, and Enfield for their toughness and for the role they played in serving freedom. I love the AR/M-16 for its ergonomics and for the memories it brings back when I hold one. I love the Winchester and Marlin leverguns because of the history behind them and the fact that nothing has replaced them and nothing ever will. (Please note that I can't afford all of these rifles, yet.)
But for me, when I hold that M-39, there is just something about it that I can't explain but that I know is there. It is the mechanical equivalent of a soulmate.
What you have to do is just experiment until you find the one rifle that gives you that feeling.
I suggest you start with an unissued M-39. :D :cool:

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