If you had no rifles...


May 16, 2003, 11:04 PM
Time for another one of my mindless intellectual theoretical

Assume you had all the experience (or lack of experience in some cases :p ) that you currently have but you didn't own any rifles... what rifles would you want to do all the things that you do on a semi-regular basis? If you just kill paper, one would probably do. If you only shoot 20 rounds a year, just before deer season, one rifle might do. If you hunt the world over, you might need more. Either way... share the minimum battery of rifles that you think you need or at least those that you would really, really want.

As a side note, I was chatting with my dealer today talking about current rifles and upcoming rifles, and those that have come and gone. We both came to the conclusion that with all the money that's been spent, recouped and lost, we could have a handful of very nice rifles.

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May 16, 2003, 11:09 PM
Well what I have is the min....

a shot gun, because it is the best for home defense
a scoped bolt action .308 just in case something far away must go down
a AK-47 for the attack of the zombies situation, and just because it is fun to shoot 30 round mags...
and of course a .22 just because everyone should have one!!

May 16, 2003, 11:28 PM
Of course, I'd have have to have a nice .22 rifle. My new CZ has me more than pleased for now but if I sold about three rifles, I could get pretty much rimfire I wanted. Those Coopers seem awful nice... esp the Light Varmint Target. I recon a Leupold VariX III 1.5-5x20 scope with the parallax set to about 50 or 75 yards would be just about ideal on a nice rimfire.

Next, I'd have to have at least one centerfire, carry-weight rifle. If I could only have one, it would be a .270 with the .25-06 being a close second for a 'one caliber' choice. Probably go for a realtively slightly heavier than sporter weight... probably a Sako with a #3 contour barrel with a nice wood stock and a Leupold 2-8x VariX III.

If opened up to two rifles in this general category, I'd probably select a .243 and a .30-06 or these days, I might go for the .300 WSM in place of the .30-06. Something like a short Sako would be nice for the 243 along with a 2-8x Leupold VariX III scope. For the .30-06, I'm completely in love with a used Weatherby MK V Deluxe at a local shop but ideally would rather have about a #3 contour to the #1. Probably go for broke and get a Schmidt & Bender 1.5-6x42 30mm scope on this one.

Finally, I guess I am a victim of the tactical influence and would like a heavy barreled rifle chambered in 6.5x284. It's unlikely you'd ever be stuck with this rifle in the middle of nowhere with no ammo so the somewhat unusual chambering shouldn't be a hinderance. It can go way way out there, allows for itty bitty groups and doesn't even punish the shooter with quite .308-level recoil. Some excellent bullets available in the caliber and now brass is even available from multiple sources. Guess you'd probably go the custom route for this one. 40X action with a Shilen #8 contour with a 1:8 twist to use those 139 gr Lapua Scenars. And I guess a Swarovski 6-24x50 scope would work pretty well on such a rifle.

May 16, 2003, 11:57 PM
Anschutz 64 MPR for all my .22lr duties

T/C Encore with a .22-250 and a .22 Hornet barrel for varmints

Dakota 76 with all the trimmings in 300 Dakota for deer and bigger game

FN-FAL for firepower fun

Life would be good with a battery like that for me.

Andrew Wyatt
May 17, 2003, 12:04 AM
a number4mk1 in stock military trim, for shooting.

a number4mk1, with a 19 inch barrel, scout scope, etc, for hunting, general tooling around.

an m-1A, for shtf, hunting, etc.

a remington 514 .22 single shot

a mini-14, for HD, equipping the children. (It's for the children!)

May 17, 2003, 12:07 AM
a shotgun (or two :) ), the most versatile weapon, IMO.
a .22lr, I agree, everyone should have one!
a high power rifle, scoped and in 30'06 or .308
and an AK type rifle w/ high cap mags, prefferably in 7.62x39!

May 17, 2003, 12:35 AM
Oh... shotguns need not apply to this thread. Well assume everyone has an 870 Wingmaster or an 1187 or a 1400 or something!

Just rifles.

May 17, 2003, 01:06 AM
If I didn't own a single rifle right now, I would consider a minimum battery of rifles to be an AR15, a scoped thirty OH six, and a .22. Specifically a 16" Bushmaster, a Remington 700 BDL or ADL, and probably a 10/22 or a Marlin Model 60 or a Marlin Model 39.

If I expanded from there, I would buy either a Finn M39 or a Schmit-Rubin K31 because I enjoy competeing in Vinatage Military Bolt Action Rifle matches. I would also probably buy a muzzle loader for Ohio deer hunting.

May 17, 2003, 04:54 AM
AR-15 carbine with aimpoint and mount,.22 coversion kit,for small game 2 rifles in 1,British inch pattern commonwealth FAL with the bolt sand cuts,scope and mount,Mossberg 590A1 shotgun with topfolding stock with a mount for aimpoint.and with bird shot never go hungry,I bet the aimpoint could hit a duck.

May 17, 2003, 07:30 AM
This is kinda interesting, because I'm a left handed shooter.

In .22 lr, I'd take my Ruger 77/22 stainless, unless either Ruger or CZ started making .22 LHB's, in which case, I'd get one. But it would have to shoot with the Ruger, or better, before I'd let the Ruger go.

In centerfire varmint, probably a Savage .223. Not sure which model, but would prefer the 12BVSS, if they'd do the LHB thing. Otherwise, get an LHB action & start building.

Light rifle. Remington 788 LHB in 6mm Remington. Long range varmints, coyotes, & deer/antelope gun. Daughter also shoots left handed.

Main hunting rig. I'll keep my Winchester new model 70 classic stainless LHB w/BOSS. In the McMillan stock, Turner sling & Leupold VariXIII 3 X 10 50mm. It's a .30-06 & I took my antelope last fall at 470 yards, one shot, with the bullet going in within 2" of my ideal placement point It was a neck shot with the hit just in front of the shoulder & just below the spine.

Heavy hunter. I'm torn between the .300 & .338 Winchester magnums. But since I doubt I'll ever go after Alaskan bears or to Africa, practicality says the .300. Besides, a local shop has a Ruger 77 LHB new at a two year old price. Gee - gotta go now!

Art Eatman
May 17, 2003, 08:48 AM
I'm primarily a hunter. So, some sort of .22 rimfire as a little general purpose rifle. Then, a low-recoil centerfire that's mostly for varmints up to coyote size: One of the hotshot .22 centerfires. I'd probably keep my 77 MK II in .223, if I were limited to just one, and part with the .22-250 and the Swift. The latter two are lots of fun, but shots beyond 200 yards are not common. Nuthin' wrong with a .243 in this middle category, of course.

If I didn't have a deer/elk rifle, I'd go with one of these new critters; probably a .300WSM. As it is, I'll just keep on loading for my '06.

Africa? I'd most likely add a .375 to the family, being interested in plains game rather than the big stuff.

One and only one rifle for everything below elk in the lower 48? Either a .243 or a 7mm08.

:), Art

May 17, 2003, 10:52 AM
I'm pretty happy with my current setup, but if I had to thin the herd, I'd keep the Remmy 700LTR .308 and the Colt AR-Pimpteen.

May 17, 2003, 11:14 AM
Out of curiosity Art, what glass do you have mounted on your famous 243 and 30-06?

4v50 Gary
May 17, 2003, 12:15 PM
Rem 700 LTR in 308 for hunting gun.
Colt AR-15 along w/dedicated 22 upper & 30 round Ceiner mags.

May 17, 2003, 01:28 PM
CZ Varmint .22lr
AR50 .50 cal

Q:and why?

a:Why not!

.02 in dreamland

May 17, 2003, 04:09 PM
First, a suppressed .22, can't imagine how anyone can do without. My CZ fills that job now.
Then a 6.5x55 for 300 meter (competitive) paper punching. My old Mauser "sharpshooter" still works.
For hunting, a .30-06, for example my $150 rebarreled k98, will do for anything from fox to moose.

I guess that's sort of a minimum. Now to the really, really want part...

For target shooting, I will probably end up with a Sauer 200 sooner or later.
For hunting, a Sako or Sauer maybe, with a nice Zeiss or S&B and a suppressor, but right now most of my hunting is done from the armchair anyway, so it's more want than need.
Then there is that African dream. I handled (read fondled) some double rifles a couple of weeks ago... How about a Krieghoff in .416 or maybe .470NE? You know you're in trouble when you start thinking "$5500 isn't that much, is it?" :D Well, it's too much now, I have other priorities in my life. But maybe, some day...

Captain Scarlet
May 17, 2003, 04:55 PM
I would want an SKS / AK type rifle, because those are the most
reliable, robust, and cheapest military semi auto rifles available. :D

May 17, 2003, 05:16 PM
If I could only have one rifle, it would probably be a metric FAL with an inch selector.

My 2nd rifle would be a CZ 527 in 7.62x39mm

My 3rd would be one of several nice .22 LR or Mags, maybe a Rem 597

4th would be a .35 Whelen...


Art Eatman
May 17, 2003, 05:48 PM
Lil Sako .243 has a Leupold 2x7, since 1982. Before then it had a 2x7 Redfield, but I fell out of love with the fine crosshairs and traded it off.

I had a Leupold 3x9 on the '06 for a long time, and for curiosity I put a 1997-vintage Simmons 44Mag on it. So far, the drawback to the Simmons is repeatability of adjustment. Since I never adjust a scope once I'm zeroed, that problem is irrelevant. But it's plenty stout and rugged against banging and bumping.

That Leupold 3x9 now lives on the Ruger 77 MK II .223.


May 17, 2003, 06:44 PM
If I could only have one, hmm, is one of each kind ever made a suitable answer?

Seriously, if limited to only one, and cost / availibilty weren't a factor, I'd opt for an M-4 (gotta stick with what you're good at).


May 18, 2003, 03:12 AM
If I had no rifles and I was starting over, but only would have (or could have) one then I would save longer and get a Bushmaster AR15 with both a 5.56 and a 9mm upper (I don't get to the rifle ranges very often so I'd need something I could shoot at indoor pistol ranges, and with no .22lr rifles I'd want to shoot cheap which both give).

If I was starting over with rifles but could have what I want I would change a few things:
-I would get the Marlin Model 60 that was my first gun, but I wouldn't have bought the Ruger 10/22 later (I might get a Remington 597)
-Instead of the Remington 581 I would have bought a CZ as my .22lr bolt rifle
-Even though my Winchester 94 in 30-30 is my favorite gun (not just rifle) I wouldn't have bought it. I don't get to the rifle range much so it only gets shot a few times a year. I would have bought the same gun in either .44mag or .357mag so that I could shoot it more
-I probably wouldn't have bought my SKS. I would have looked around for one in better shape, or bought an AK or I would have saved more and bought something in .223/5.56 (depending upon how patient I could be I'd try to wait for an AR 15, but more likely would have bought an AR 180 or even a Mini-14).
-The Hi-Point Carbine probably would have been bought since I just bought it since it was cheap and looked like fun (which it is), though the chrome receiver and handguard is so ugly I think I would have gone w/ blue after all (when I decided to buy it they only had this one in stock and I wanted to shoot it that day).

May 18, 2003, 02:48 PM
Start over? NOW? :what:

OK. :D

Bushmaster 'Pre-Ban' A2 20"bbl.
Armalite AR10A4.
Extra uppers for both.

T/C Contender & Encore.
Extra barrels and carbine kits for both.

Extra barrels.

Remington 700 Custom Shop in .375 H&H.

May 18, 2003, 03:11 PM
I think I could get buy with these:

--Custom, accurized Ruger 1A in 7x57 Mauser. This would hunt everything from squirrel and small fur-bearers (120 gr. solids) to bear (175 gr. Barnes X or 195 gr. Barnes Original). While not ubiquitous, 7x57 is pretty easy to find and as a moderate-pressure round the brass seems to last a long time. Sadly, I haven't had the courage or cash to buy one.

-- CZ-452 .22 LR. Probably the only rifle I will never part with. If I ever did, I'd just go out and buy another. It's MOA accurate, tough as a rock and very well balanced. This is an ideal plinking and small game rifle.

Beyond that, it's all gravy.

May 18, 2003, 03:56 PM
An AR15 tricked out for Service Rifle high power competition- floated barrel, 1:7 twist, and a nice trigger job. (Basically the sort of rifle that would let John Holliger get braces for his kid.)

A flat-top AR15 carbine. 16 inch barrel with some sort of red-dot site and a set of those backup irons that can be flipped up when needed.

I don't get to the range often enough to shoot one rifle let alone two, so anything above and beyond those two would just be butter. Still, I'd like to have a decent bolt-action .22 for plinkin' and some sort of scoped bolt gun for reaching out past 600 yards. Could be a .308 or a .30-06.

May 19, 2003, 10:28 AM

A good .22LR, 'cause everybody needs a good .22.
A good lever gun, in your choice of cal, for up to 150Yd work.
A Mil-Surp turnbolt, 'cause all should own a piece of history.
A good semi-auto in major caliber (for me US Rifle Cal .30 M-1)

Steve Smith
May 19, 2003, 11:13 AM
I kinda maintain a "bare bones" collection compared to most here. I'd have two comp rifles, one trainer (same as I have now) and one fighting piece, like a lightweight AR or G3. Hmm..something tells me I need to replace my long G3 with a short HK91 with folding buttstock.

May 19, 2003, 03:27 PM
...see that, guys?
Steve has maintained a low profile, bare bones setup until NOW...:evil:

He's thinkin' 'bout the short model with the folder --- next it'll be the medium model with the XXX, then another variant and another, and, BWOO-HOO-HAA-HA...
He's got the bug. He just doesn't know it yet! :D

September 27, 2003, 05:04 AM
Assuming that I was suddenly without a rifle, I would duplicate what I have now.

M 1 Garand
Lever action 22
50 cal muzzle loader
K98k Mauser

Of course if I knew "then" what I know now, I would have registered a dozen class 3 F A Ls and AR 15's.

September 27, 2003, 11:38 AM
One in 45/70 Gov't
One in 30/40 Krag
One in .308
One in .223
One in .50 or .54 cal muzzleloader

and a bunch in 30-06

Brian Dale
September 27, 2003, 12:30 PM
-a "grownup's" .22 LR, like a Marlin 39, the modern version of Annie Oakley's rifle. Pre-crossbolt safety, please. Or a CZ 452 or Izhmash Biathlon Basic; I just haven't shot those myself.

-a short, sweet-handling .22LR to take kids shooting with. Remington Model 33, Stevens Crack Shot or Favorite, or a modern kids' rifle. It's for the Children!

-a lever-action carbine in .30-30 or .35Rem: Marlin 336, Win '94 or Savage 99. They're all good.

-a Rock River AR15 for paper; I'll want John Holliger to see it, too.

-and a Garand. Everybody needs a Garand!

I need to do more things; I want to be able to justify a .45-70 Rolling Block, milsurp circa-.30cal (1903A3, Mauser, SMLE, M-N...) and a scoped, bolt-action .30-'06! what rifles would you want to do all the things that you do on a semi-regular basis? ... the minimum battery of rifles that you think you need or at least those that you would really, really want. Oh, reallyreally want is OK? I'm all right, then (whew!). :)

September 27, 2003, 01:39 PM

Brian Williams
September 27, 2003, 02:35 PM
Savage Mark II 22 lr with heavy barrel

Win low wall in 218bee with weaver k6 scope

Win Mod 70 compact classic in 308 w Luepold 2x7 compact scope

FAL DSA STG-58 carbine folding bipod front end.

AR Ace skeleton stock, flattop, 16.5 in lightweight barrel, flattop gasblock, m4 forend, folding front and rear sights, OKO sight, Flash M16 flash suppressor.

Rem Rolling block in some insane caliber like 50-120 with a Tang sight

Leaman Lancaster pattern Pennsylvania rifle in 36

1894 Marlin 20" barrel 45 Colt Marbles Tang sight or 1894c 357

Ruger 10/22 pre-ban folding stock with internally suppressed barrel
and some nice peep system for sights and 10 ramline mags.

Mike Irwin
September 27, 2003, 02:44 PM
A .22 and a .30-30 would pretty much do it all in the lower 48.

Zeke Menuar
September 27, 2003, 03:20 PM
A Savage .243. Savage because I can get the tools and change barrels to any caliber in the .308 family.

My M700 Tupperware special in 270 Winchester

CZ 550 in 9.3 x 62


September 27, 2003, 03:51 PM
My SLB2000 is here to hold me over until I escape, but for academic purposes, an AR-15 with a .22LR conversion kit and a boatload of 30-rd mags.

September 27, 2003, 05:27 PM
My custom griffin .338 win mag w/leupold 3.5X10 varix-III(1-moa+ a work of art) my Match L1A1 w/ suit-sight; my browning safari .308w/3-9 varix-II( another piece of art) my remington 510 targetmaster w/diaopter sights .22lr. :D

Chris Rhines
September 27, 2003, 08:27 PM
I'd still have my Anschutz 64 - nothing will ever come between me and that rifle.

A pair of AR-15s, one hipower Service Rifle and one carbine, probably with a side-mounted charging handle. Also, a dedicated .22 upper.

At least one 20" flattop AR-10.

That'd do for a start.

- Chris

September 27, 2003, 08:38 PM
I don't have any long-arms (poor starving college studnet)! But I want a bare bones collection:

.22LR I need a good one in Left Hand with as long a barrel as possible. Multiple uses, from dispatching small game, to cheap practice.

.308 When they come out with a L-H Kimber 84M, I'm buying it. This will be the "do darn near everything" weapon. I consider it over lever-actions due it being a "military caliber" if such become proscribed, it can be easily converted to 7-08. It also offers greater range than most levers.

.308 FN FAL I chose this over other .308 Battle rifles on the grounds that it is a more common weapon. Standardization rules be it in the mil, or for software.

I have not yet decided on a large-Caliber hunting weapon, I'll worry about it when it becomes a necessity. If two are necessary, one will be a .375 H&H, the other will be bigger, heavier, and scarier.

A .50 BMG Rifle I have not yet decided which, but a bolt will probably be more in my price range.

When I get a family this collection may be expanded to some .223 long-arms in the event the woman I love is recoil-sensitive.


September 30, 2003, 06:27 PM
You know though... there's something to be said of The Tamara Approach.

There's some rifles I've owned that were great for the educational aspect, but I doubt I'll ever own again, or really want to -- SKS for example, or (non sequitor over to pistols) a Glock. Not that they're bad guns, just that they didn't do anything for me really. But I only knew that 'cause I was able to tinker and play with 'em for an extended period of time and get to know them.

There's others I'd consider buying in the future, again for the "how does it work" educational value that I'd likely never keep long term.. prolly I'll try an AK variant for the same reason one of these days, or a CETME to learn how the roller lock really works, or somesuch... but even if I did, it wouldn't be with the intention of keeping them... stamped steel and loading pallet wood just doesn't appeal to me. More, well.... it's kinda like the books you buy in college. Some are worth keeping around forever. Quite a few -- despite the fact you can get a lot out of them -- are best off being returned to the bookstore at the end of the semester.

So yes, even if the combined value of just the hits I've taken on trade-ins over the last five years might buy something nice.. I look at it as buying a first-person education. Which is worth something in itself. :)

Now.. all that said... I've never had *that* much in guns at any one time or alltogether compared to a lot of the folks here... , but....

..if I put it all into just a few, as the original question goes... it'd prolly be just about enough for a nice .22 bolt (my CZ is great, add a nice American stock and glass and its there), a self-loading carbine of some variety (prolly a lighter-weight 16" flat top AR), and -- the best part -- a really nice bolt action with pretty wood. Prolly a Win70 classic in .30-06. Those three would suffice, I think.


September 30, 2003, 06:52 PM
For general shooting I'd argue for an AR15 along with a 22lr. bolt conversion kit.

Would get done a good 70-8)% of the shooting I may ever need to do.

Then for the small amount of other jobs I might need done, a 22lr. for lighter jobs and then my 300WinMag for jobs where something heavier is needed.

September 30, 2003, 07:36 PM
I guess for me it would be: (in order of purchase)
1: DSA STG 58 FAL cause it does it all and does it well.
2. A ruger 10/22 just because .22 is soo plentiful
3. One serious long range rifle, i.e. a blueprinted heavy barrel 700
4. A Mark 23 (well why not?)

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