Help me pick a Hunting rifle


April 2, 2005, 04:08 PM
OK, all my rifles are EBRs and tactical rifles.

I would like a nice, accurate rifle so that IF I ever decide to get into hunting I will have one.

I am considering all makers - Savage, Tikka, Mossberg, Ruger, Remington, Winchester, Howa, etc.

I would like it to be All Weather (stainless). Synthetic stock. Rugged, reliable, and ACCURATE. Lightweight would be nice as well.

Have had my eye on a Tikka T-3 Lite Stainless. Love the Tikka :)

However, I am open to others.

Biggest problem is picking a caliber. I guess .308 is a good one for most hunting applications, but would there be a more accurate, flatter shooting, less recoil option? I can reload if I have to.

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P5 Guy
April 2, 2005, 04:16 PM
How about an Evil Blued Steel and Wood rifle?
Those old battlerifles were designed to be rugged, reliable and accurate. They've been out in all types of weather, but they're not very light in weight.
M44 or similar Mosin Nagant style rifle could be an option?

April 2, 2005, 04:28 PM
I am in the same situation right now and I think I have made up my mind.

For around $450 I think I'll be happy.

Although for hunting you may not want that heavy barrel, myself I don't mind humping it through the woods.

P5 Guy
April 2, 2005, 04:52 PM
The new trigger on Savage rifles is supposed to be a great improvement over their past efforts.
The reason I suggested M44 or M38 Mosins is C&Rs can buy them for around $60. Local dealers are selling good ones here for around $100. Plastic stocks are not as appealing to me as wood, even ratty wood.

April 2, 2005, 05:35 PM
for cartridge, look to the 7-08.

remington 700 mountain rifle is a fine weapon.

April 2, 2005, 06:22 PM
Get a 375 H and H. Ruger or Winchester. Very reliable, large claw extractor. Can hunt medium size game such as deer with smaller grain loads, and if you want then can also use for Big game (elk, black bear, Kudu, moose) and Dangerous game (grizz, buffalo, etc..) All around hunting rifle. When I was in Africa, many have just one rifle to cover all their needs and 90% of the time it was a .375 H and H. Have a Ruger M77 bolt in .375 that I really like. If you want SS and Synthetic, get the Win .375 with pre-64 action in SS and then put in Sythetic high quality stock. Or for weather protection just get a blued model and then teflon coat it.

April 2, 2005, 06:26 PM
Intended to address greywolf on that last post.

April 2, 2005, 07:02 PM
Why hasn't anone asked the all important question: What are you hunting?

I love the 6.5 Swede. For deer hunting, absolutely the perfect round. I wouldn't feel underpowered hunting black bear or elk with it.

The Tikka is a sweet rifle. I also like CZ's. My personal rifle is a Rem 700 Classic, another fine choice.

April 2, 2005, 08:18 PM
When hunting season gets close I pass by a DSA FAL, Colt SP2, AK47, Garand, 03,03A3,P17, G98,98k,SMLE MKIII, SMLE MKII, M1 Carbine, 91 nagant, 44 nagant, Mod 39, Type 99, SKS,ect, ect and get my Marlin 336 in 30-30. I load 150g softpoints with a stout load of 4895, have a Tasco 3x9 scope on it, and it is the best brush, deer, coyote and hog gun I could ask for. It is accurate, reliable, easy to handle, and fun to shoot. If I were in the "only one rifle" game for real the 30-30 might be it.


April 2, 2005, 10:18 PM
Less recoil, flatter shooting than a .308 = .270

For everything else, what jefnvk said - except that my personal rifle is a CZ 550.

April 2, 2005, 11:03 PM
I like the idea of a Tikka T3 or Savage in 30-06 or .243 if you really care about less recoil, but what about a WHOLE DIFFERENT track?

You say you have EBRs and tactical rifles. I'm sure many of these could cover most of your hunting needs.

What about a Marlin 1895 in 45-70 Gubmint? Add a ghost ring sight and some reloading gear and you are good-to-go from whitetail through grizzley on up through Cape Buffalo and elephant.

Can be had in stainless and even a short barrel guide gun version. Probably no better all-purpose hunting rifle out there - especially if you're already covered in the EBR world.

April 2, 2005, 11:42 PM
I like my Tikka T-3 in .308. It likes Hornady Match 165gr. BTHP. A replacement buttpad, a 3-9x40 Leupold, and a sling are my only additions.

My father in law shoots 7mm-08 and I've met other folks that like .270. As someone else said, depends on what you want to do. I chose .308 for versatility and availability as I don't reload.

Have fun.

Northslope Nimrod
April 3, 2005, 12:59 AM
For deer = .270
For elk,moose = 300 Win Mag OR Ultra Mag.
For deer, elk, moose - 300 Win Mag or Ultra Mag or 7mm....or 30-06.

I shoot a Remington 700 in 30-06. I like the 300....but I am sticking with my 30-06 due to cheap ammo....buddies usually can loan you a few if you run out in the woods. Also, 30-06 can be loaded pretty hot & heavy...all the way up to 300 Win Mag ballistics. Check out the charts! If you won't be making shots over 400 yards...just go with the 30-06.

cracked butt
April 3, 2005, 06:00 AM
Have had my eye on a Tikka T-3 Lite Stainless. Love the Tikka

However, I am open to others.

Biggest problem is picking a caliber. I guess .308 is a good one for most hunting applications, but would there be a more accurate, flatter shooting, less recoil option? I can reload if I have to.

Looks like you have your bases about covered. Your choice of caliber and and rifle are about as good as you can get.

Flat shooting- not sure if you really need that much east of the Mississippi. Most of the shots I've taken when whitetail hunting have been under 100 yards. The longer shots have been from tower blinds over marshes (about the only place flat enough that isn't tree covered to take shots over 200 yards in my state with the exception of picked cornfields. A .270 will drop a few inches less than a .308 at 300 yards- not enough to make any difference, and IMHO that is at the outer edge of distance game should be shot at, though some people can shoot further. Even a 300 Win magnum offers no real advantage at that range.

April 3, 2005, 07:01 AM
You will always have the right caliber if its a 30-06. There is a reason why its so popular. If you want a short action go with the 308.

April 3, 2005, 09:16 AM
I keep reading about the 7mm-08 - what about this?

Price: $582.40

Shipping Weight: 6.00 pounds


Not a bad price for a new Tikka, eh? I like the weight, too.

Bear Gulch
April 3, 2005, 10:47 AM

With handloads it pushes capability for bears. It will easily deal with everything from prarie dogs to moose. Ammo is available everywhere.

April 3, 2005, 12:25 PM
my 700 lvsf in 7-08 weighs in at a hair over 7 pounds in a ready-to-hunt status (w/ scope, mounting hardware, sling, and a bellyfull of ammo). i paid $680 for the rifle, and got a $50 rebate from remington, bringing my total out the door to $630 and change...

April 3, 2005, 12:42 PM
I keep reading about the 7mm-08 - what about this? It's a .308 case necked down to 7mm (.284").

For deer = .270
For elk,moose = 300 Win Mag OR Ultra Mag.
For deer, elk, moose - 300 Win Mag or Ultra Mag or 7mm....or 30-06.
With the exception of the .30-06 that is overkill in the recoil department. For deer, esp. at <100 yards, a .243 is plenty. For elk and moose, a 6.5x55 will do the job if loaded properly (it is afterall what the Scandanavians used for decades almost exlusivly for moose hunting, and it's still pretty popular in that regard). Anything more powerful than a 6.5x55 will also do the job, but recoil needs to be kept in mind as a rifle that kicks to hard will never get shot and therefore the shooter won't ever get very proficient with that rifle.

April 3, 2005, 04:40 PM
I have two suggestions:

1) Ruger M77 mark II, available in stainless and synthetic. Your first choice of calibre is a very good one. I use an M77 (original tang safety) in .270 Win. That cartridge has a lot of history behind it as a very good round for flat shooting deer hunting. The usual bullet choices are 130, 140, or 150 grain pointed soft point. 110 grain bullets are available for hand loading, making it possible to press the .270 into service as a varmint calibre. Other calibre choices that would allow you to go lighter for varmint hunting are .243 and .257 Roberts. However, if you want the ability to go for game bigger than deer, in a currently cataloged rifle, in stainless/synthetic, it would be hard to beat 30-06.

The Ruger M77 mark II has a good action, great extracter, scope rings included.

2) Remington Model Seven, available in wood, laminate, and synthetic; blued or stainless. The action is shorter. Common choices for this gun are .243, .308, and 7mm-08. Remington does make versions in the Short Action Ultra Magnum series, if you're into that sort of thing, including a verion in stainless steel with a nonreflective black finish.

If I were making the choice you're facing these two would be on my short list. I have Plenty of Milsurp choices as a backupo to my Ruger for hunting. However, before I got into Military surplus rifles (a 1917 Swedish Mauser started the addiction) I was seriously considering the Model Seven in .308 for the backup role.

April 3, 2005, 04:46 PM
Ditto the Model Seven recommendation. I have one in .308, my son one in .243. Mine came in wood, but I've replaced the stock with an H.S. Precision. Available in stainless with composite stock.

Described HERE (

You didn't say what you wanted to hunt. I like the .308 for deer. My son likes the .243 because it's big enough for whitetail and not overkill for groundhogs. 7mm-08 would fall between the two.

rust collector
April 3, 2005, 09:10 PM
I have met very few centerfire rifles I didn't like, but my go-to gun for antelope and deer is a Tikka lite stainless T3 in .308 with Bushnell 3200 3-9x mounted. I was fortunate enough to order one from my local Wal-Mart in Nov, 2003 for less than $500.

Very pleasant to shoot & carry, slick action, good workmanship and plenty accurate. There are many great rifles out there and I've enjoyed my M-70, M-700, Husqvarna, M-77 and a raft of others. All were good guns but this one fills the bill for me. I don't think you'd be disappointed with the T3 whether you were punching paper, smacking silhouettes or putting the stalk on medium sized big game.

April 3, 2005, 09:12 PM
I like my CZ527 Mountain Carbine in 7.63x39. It is neither stainless nor synthetic though. Very accurate however.

April 4, 2005, 01:17 AM
I have never regretted my Rem 700 BDL in 30-06.

April 4, 2005, 01:26 AM
I have a Tikka T3 Lite in 308Win.

I love the gun. I have a Leupold VXI 3-9x40. The gun is 0.75MOA accurate or better with every premium hunting ammo I've tried.

It's light and handy and the stock fits me perfectly. I have never had any trouble with it.

IMHO it has the best combination of fit, finish, ergonomics, weight, and accuracy of anything in its price range.
It comes with rings too that will fit up to a 42mm non AO or a 40mm AO scope.

April 4, 2005, 08:01 AM
Here's a good page comparing typical elk cartridges.
Remember you can always load an 06, 7mm RM or 300 WM down for deer, but you can load a 7mm-08, 270 or 308 up only so far for elk. And if the elk loads thump your shoulder more than you like you can always install a recoil pad or muzzle break. Since you said recoil is a big factor in your choice consider the 7mm Rem Mag.

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