New Rifle Choices


March 24, 2003, 08:14 AM
I will have some extra funds in a couple of months from an investment that I made. Looking to buy a rifle this time around but I have no idea where to start. I have never owned a rifle but have shot several. My budget is ~$750. I am looking at Remington 700s (in .308) now but I don't know if that is really practical. I think I would prefer bolt action over semiauto but I am not certain. I don't hunt nor do I plan to unless we start having some real problems here in the states, just punch paper. The closest rifle range only has a 100 meter distance. Anyone else ever had this dilema and what did you do?


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March 24, 2003, 09:55 AM
A Remington .308?

Good choice. Stick with bolt action if just starting out. Learn it. Shoot it. Then make other choices later. OPTICS MATTER!

March 24, 2003, 10:10 AM
Suggest taking a hard look at Tikka. Do a search here and on TFL and I think you'll be impressed with what you find.

I have a Whitetail in .30-06 and love it.

March 24, 2003, 02:13 PM
At $750, the door is wide open. If I had $750 and was wanting to buy one rifle, I think I'd look pretty hard at finding a nice good condition used Sako, probably in 243 or 6.5x55. Good ballistics, minimal recoil proven killing abilities, esp effective at taking out paper.

On the other hand, if you're just shooting paper and mostly at 100 yards, I might look at something in .223. Tikkas are consistantly good, Howas are generally underpriced comapred to the competition and come in many varieties. I like Ruger 77s but seem to be in the minority. I prefer Winchesters to Remingtons but that's mustly because of the bolt handle handle design.

Really, I don't think you can go wrong with any of the major makers. They all make guns plenty accurate to anhiliate paper at 100 yards. I'd go to a couple shops and handle them and see what strikes your fancy.

March 25, 2003, 09:44 PM
Depends on what you are looking for.
I have found that I can shoot my Mosin-Nagants better than I have ever shot any new rifle.
There is just something about the way that they handle. They just seem to seek the target, and wait there patiently until you press the trigger.
If you aren't bent on something new and flashy, try an M-39.
It will run you $200-300, with several hundred leftover for ammo.
It is true that they aren't target rifles, and they are hard to mount a scope on, but so what.
Many of the snipers back in the day were just as dangerous with no scope on their rifle.
When you lay hands one of those beasts, and begin popping stuff that you can barely see over those sights, you will know why.

March 25, 2003, 10:02 PM
I'd get a CZ 550 American in any caliber that catches your fancy, and put a Leupold Vari-X II on it. That's just about $750 if you shop carefully, and I don't think it's possible to get more gun for your money in a new-made bolt rifle.


Art Eatman
March 25, 2003, 10:13 PM
Personal opinion, but the "best" is the one which fits properly. Mount the rifle to your shoulder with your eyes closed. When you open your eyes, the sights or scope should be right in line with your aiming eye.

The length of pull (distance from buttpad to trigger) can be varied by buttpad thickness...

Then you can worry among several different brands and models...

:), Art

March 25, 2003, 11:06 PM
You could buy a brand new Remington 700 and a good quality scope and probably a good sling and some ammo for $750. I have a Rem 700 in .30-06 owner and love it. I had a Ruger M77 MKII in .308, but was never really as satisfied with it as I am with the Remington.
.308 is a good target round and recoil isn't punishing by any means, and if the S ever HTF you'd have a significant defense and/or game getting rifle.
BTW, when I went to buy my first bolt gun, I shouldered just about every popular domestic make, Savage, Winchester, Browning, Ruger, Remington and the feel and safety and action of the Remington felt the best to me. I'd suggest you do the same and pick the one that feels best to you, they're all probably in the ball-park as far as accuracy goes. It comes down to what your comfortable and confident with.

March 25, 2003, 11:21 PM
my oppinion, and many (who've never shot them) will disagree...

is buy a Savage, put top of the line optics and mounts on it, use the spare change to buy all the ammo you can, practice, practice practice. learn the rifle and it's abilities, quirks etc, inside and out. this will get you a much better "system" than you'd get for the same money. AND you'll have more ammo to play and learn with.

now some may pan the savage. but i have observed that most who do have never shot one, mostly on the basis of "a rifle that inexpensive can't be any good"... WRONG!! they shoot well (most accurate gun i've ever owned was a Savage), they are made well and savage isn't trying to sell a name (most of what you get with the price increase to the likes of Remington or Winchester is the "name recognition" mark up).

so with a savage you get a reliable accurate gun that leaves you with enough to get the optics that you REALLY want, PLUS (usually) some extras and a pile of ammo. the savage is the only gun out there right now that i think is WORTH putting a scope that costs more than the gun on.

i will end with. regardless of what you get, shoot it till you are completely confortable with it and KNOW what it will do. don't "play" with it be serious about learing what the gun, optics, ammo combination you've chosen will do. THEN you can start to PLAY :evil:

Dave R
March 25, 2003, 11:59 PM
I went through a similar thought process when I bought my first centerfire rifle. Wound up with a Remington 700 in .308. Been happy with it ever since.

Coupla days ago I went out after work and did some long-range plinking at the "informal range". I had sighted my scope at 100 yards with 180gr ammo, and it was shooting high at 200 yards with 150 gr. ammo.

So I set out a target at 200 yrds, turned the scope down 6 clicks, and fired 3 rounds for a first group. This was not benched, with sandbags, but with an improvised rest. The group measured a fraction over an inch.

I was very happy.

Not to say any other brand would not necessarily be better...I think my next rifle might be a Savage Scout model.

March 26, 2003, 10:55 AM
I have a Savage scout.
It is a really cool little rifle.
My best group to date with it was a little over an inch at 100 yds.
Not too bad when you consider that I only have a 2x scope on it...
I couldn't even see the bulls-eye; I just put the crosshairs in the center of the target and fired.
I think I may need to try a model 11.
I already have a 3x9 Nikon that I could put on it.

March 26, 2003, 07:48 PM
Anyone have any comments about the Savage 10FP. I like the heavy 24" barrel combination and they can be had scopeless for about $450 new.


March 26, 2003, 09:37 PM
I just went through this, and here is what I have now:

Savage FP10 24" heavy barrel in .308 with the new accutrigger (
Choate Ultimate Sniper Stock (
Harris 6-9 bipod
Weaver 2 piece bases
Burris medium rings
Bushnell Elite 3200 5-15x40 (

I got it all (except for the stock, I had to buy that seperate) for $825 (including tax and everything), if you talk to the dealer and tell them you want all of this, they may have to order it but may cut you some slack on price.

so far I have only shot it at 50yards (as far back as the range by me goes) but center to center of a 3 shot group was about 1/4" (

I am very happy with what I ended up with!!

March 26, 2003, 09:40 PM
that's the Savage model i had, actually it was a 110FP, b/c i bought mine about 6 months to a year before they released the short actions. Of the only two problems i had, one was my fault (put the magazine spring in backward) and one was the result of having a short action round (.223) in a long action gun.
as i said above i loved mine. it was much more accurate than i initally expected, wasn't very picky about ammo, shot ~1MOA with winchester and federal 55gr 5.56 Ball, and wold get down to under 1/2MOA with good handloads and a steady "nut behind the trigger".

i regret having to sell mine, i'll miss it but then again it's absence gives me a good reason to go out and buy one of the Short action FPs :D :evil: maybe even one fo the 10FP-LE series

March 26, 2003, 10:03 PM

You asked if anyone had any comments on the Savage 10FP.
Yessir, I do.

I'm fresh off an opinionated ragfest in another thread on Remington bolt handles ( I'm the opinionated rag, BTW, and I collect Remingtons...:D ), BUT, I'd like to share with you my initiation into centerfire rifles.

When I decided to start looking into rifles, I was all over the map.
The experts at work ran the gamut on what brand and caliber to get, just to further confound me.
Long story short is: I got a Remington 700 BDL in 7mm Rem.Mag. and it's my favorite bolt-action rifle.
Even my wife said, in her kindly way, "Just go get a G@dd@m rifle!!!"... :cuss: I was glad to have her support!
This decision took almost two years of catalog flogging and putting the money away and listening and reading and, and, and, and...:what:

Now, don't let anyone think I'm trying to steer you immediately to what I chose, as that is not the case.
The reason it took me so long to choose is because when I mentioned the Savage 110FP (as it was called before the new short action came out) in .308, these experts trashed the idea of the brand and caliber, etc. :confused:

OK, well, in Guns&Weapons for Law Enforcement, there was an article on this rifle and the Weaver V-16 scope and Weaver rings/base and the Harris bipod...and the gun was good; accurate; reliable and the whole setup was priced right.

I thought I'd get it and be able to use it for:
1) SHTF / Tactical rifle... :rolleyes: cool factor, you know?
2) Hunting, regardless of the hvy.bbl. :eek: I didn't plan on stalking a deer. I was going to stay put and 'snipe' it.
3) Target/Bench shooting... I was going to learn to shoot with this rifle.

TRUTH BE TOLD --- I should have bought this gun right away, just as I wanted it, and learned to shoot!!!
The experts, IMHO, should have encouraged me to get what I wanted and helped me learn to shoot.
I could have decided to change brands/calibers later, if need be.
What I ended up doing is getting confused as hell and waiting too long. I could have been out shooting a LOT sooner. :banghead:

So, that may have taken a little bit of time to explain, but, if you can get a setup such as I was looking at, for all the reasons right or wrong in anybody elses book, GET THE RIFLE and START SHOOTIN NOW. Do NOT wait~!

For the money, you probably could get what I described and be out having the time of your life in short order.
I encourage you to do so.
One last thing. NEVER sell your first gun. Please.

I hope this story helps you get out and start shooting soon.
Don't wait for the experts to confuse you.
ASK them to take you and your new rifle out to get acquainted.
And don't take any crap about your choice, whatever it turns out to be!
HAVE FUN. :cool:

March 27, 2003, 06:34 PM
Stopped by the gun store on the way home today to check out a Savage 10FP. Well, they didn't have any but sure as ***** another customer had one out of his case with a Choate stock and a Tasco site (a long, obnoxious affair I didn't care for). Imagine the odds of that. Well, I went and asked him how he liked it. He replied that he could shoot 1" groups at 100 yards. I asked him again how he liked it. Same reply. I guess he didn't understand I needed more detail. I asked how much he wanted and he said $1000. A bit on the high side if you ask me but hey, it's his gun.

I guess I'll continue looking around this area for one to see if I really like it.


March 27, 2003, 07:23 PM
if you ever make it up to the Tampa area I'll let you shoot mine... :) I like it!!

if you want to know anything specific, just let me know...

oh and it is capible of better than 1" at 100 yards!!

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