best all around rifle round


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jay43
August 19, 2007, 11:53 AM
Just looking for your opinions on the best all around rifle round. A well balanced round that won't kill your budget a the range but also will be effective to hunt a wide range of animals with.

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rdaines
August 19, 2007, 12:00 PM
How about a Remington 700 in .270? If you handload you can make varmint loads (115 grain bullets) to deer and larger beasties with 130, 150 grain. Also a very common cartridge so you'll be able to buy ammo almost anywhere.

GRIZ22
August 19, 2007, 12:26 PM
I'd pick .308 Winchester. There's a wide variety of 30 caliber bullets available that you can use from 110 to 200 grain and although not that inexpensive, 7.62 NATO ammo available. 7.62 NATO milsurp is a lot more inexpensive than commericial ammo.

CavalryJim
August 19, 2007, 12:49 PM
A Remington, Savage, CZ, etc. in .30-06.

jpwilly
August 19, 2007, 12:51 PM
Best all around cartridge for North America is the 30-06. Therefore any rifle that shoots it should be what your looking for.

timothy75
August 19, 2007, 01:17 PM
7.62x54

Float Pilot
August 19, 2007, 05:28 PM
It really depends on;
1. Where you live...
2. The type of critters that may hunt you.
3. The type of critters you are hunting.
4. If you reload / handload.

This last year I built up a 350 Rem Mag Chambered M-77MKII for my particular area of Alaska.
The difference from the stock rifle.

1. Front sight installed.
2. Low light fiber bead.
3. front sight hood drilled for sky-lights
4. NECG, detachable rear peep sight.
5. Warne quick detach scope rings with a 2x 7 Leupold. With backpack case.
6. high heat Ceramic coated.
7. Second sling swivels on left side of rifle. (not shown in these pics)

I use 225 grain Kodiak Bullets. Out to 300 yards, it works for anything in my AO and weights exactly 8 pounds with the scope.

I have lots of others that work just as well. And maybe a 35 Whelen in an old M-70 action or Mauser action would have been better. But I ran across this rifle fairly cheap, it has enough power for the local job, and it is light enough to carry...Oddly enough it is very accurate...


BTW: Here in Alaska we ran a few polls about what the best all around Alaskan rifle caliber would be if (God Forbid) you could have only one...
The last results whcih are pretty typical....

338 Win Mag at 35.4% followed by the 30-06 at 25.4%

.270 ................0.62%
.30-06...... ..... 25.47%
7mm Mag...... ..4.35%
.300WM..........14.29%
.338WM..........35.40%
.375 H&H.........14.91%
.45-70.............3.73%
.416 Magnum... 1.24%

It is a regional type of thing,,,,

RancidSumo
August 19, 2007, 05:31 PM
.243
the only animals I wouldn't feel comfortable hunting with it would be moose and bears.

RockyMtnTactical
August 19, 2007, 05:32 PM
If hunting large game is one of your major uses, I would suggest .308, 30-06 if you're gonna be hunting VERY large game...

hossdaniels
August 19, 2007, 05:35 PM
I love my 270, but all around has got to be a 30-06.

Charles S
August 19, 2007, 05:59 PM
Just looking for your opinions on the best all around rifle round. A well balanced round that won't kill your budget a the range but also will be effective to hunt a wide range of animals with.

I think for the purposes you specify....A well balanced round that is effective to hunt a wide variety of animals and is not expensive...assuming you are limiting the discussion to North American game. I personally believe that the 30-06 is the best all purpose round.

However there are several others that will work almost as well or better; although each will have it's strengths and weaknesses.

Obviously the 308 will work, but you give up some performance with heavier loads.

The 7mm Remington magnum will work, you gain some maximum point blank range, a little energy, for the most part bullets with a little higher sectional density, but you loose bullet weight and diameter and it will cost you a little more.

The various 300 magnums all work well, but cost more, recoil more, and produce more muzzle blast. However they also deliver more energy and have a greater maximum point blank range. In truth they are not necessary for the vast majority of hunting situations.

There are a number of wildcats that will do a good job, but at an increase in cost.

If you consider the larger bears and the African Plains game then IMHO the 338 Winchester becomes very attractive as does the 375 H&H magnum.

If you wish to hunt the really large game then the 375 H&H is the starting point, however I believe you are entering the realm where a hunter would be better served with more than one gun.

Good luck.

Nameless_Hobo
August 19, 2007, 06:05 PM
.30-60, .308 or .30-30. They'll each work.

I wouldn't recommend getting "odd" calibers, like 7mm magnum, 7mm-08, etc. They're not as common, and if you're going for a "do all" rifle, you need something you can find ANYWHERE.

.30-06, .308 and .30-30 will be cheaper than them as well.

Will Learn
August 19, 2007, 06:07 PM
.308

kir_kenix
August 19, 2007, 06:20 PM
id have to go w/ the good 'ole .308. it will get the job done on EVERYTHING (bing and small) in north america except bear, carabou, moose etc. it is very versetile...w/ light bullets it is a medium-to-long range varmint gun, w/ heavier a medium range deer round.

W.E.G.
August 19, 2007, 06:29 PM
+1 for .308... and a minor in .223

.270 is a very good sporting rifle cartridge

jefnvk
August 19, 2007, 06:30 PM
.30-06, simply for availability, power and versatility

amprecon
August 19, 2007, 06:51 PM
I just can't help but keep recommending the SKS. This rifle is just tough as nails, reliable and ammo is cheap. On the power scale it's on-line with the venerable .30-30 Winchester. Not to mention 10 rounds down-range as fast as you can pull the trigger.

Sharps-shooter
August 19, 2007, 07:27 PM
I'll say a .22 long rifle, just to be different.

It's plenty cheap, you can easily carry a thousand rounds of it around, and you can easily hunt all sorts of things-- varmints of all sorts, squirrels, rabbits, hares, snakes, beavers, bobcats, various weasels and skunks, coons.

If the need arises, you can hunt bigger things with it, but such is frowned upon in most locations, and better rounds exist for the job.

additionally, it's easy on your shoulder and ears, and you can get good accuracy with minimal effort.

Of course, my personal favorite is 45-70 loaded hotter than hot. but that's not exactly "practical", it's just fun. Great for cattle hunting, though.

retrieverman
August 19, 2007, 07:42 PM
I have to vote for 30-06, but my second choice would be 308. I would have nominated 270, but the choice of bullet weights is too limited.

RNB65
August 19, 2007, 07:45 PM
Remington/Ruger/Savage/CZ bolt action in .308.

:)

davera
August 19, 2007, 10:55 PM
In my opinion, the most versatile has to be the "30-06 class" of rounds to include .308, 7.62X51, 8mm mauser, maybe .270 and 7mm-08 and at the lower end of that scale 6.5 Swede. Those will let you hunt most anything if you do your job. I've heard of 6.5 Swede being used for moose. You can add widespread availability to the equation and narrow it down to 30-06 and .308 here and maybe 8mm mauser in Europe.

Jimmy Newman
August 20, 2007, 01:35 AM
I shoot 7mm-08 and love it. I shoot 139 grain Hornady loads that are 100fps slower than their 140gr load for .270. I wouldn't trade it for anything, honestly, for deer-sized game and stuff a little bigger or smaller.

Maybe it's just Texas, but I see more than just 30-06 everywhere. There's almost always .270 and 7mm mag, as well as .223 and .308 and I can't remember more than once seeing somewhere without 7mm-08. Maybe I'm just lucky. They have all those calibers at the general store in the small town nearest where I deer hunt, which has a population of under 300 people.

rangerruck
August 20, 2007, 01:37 AM
price wise, one would have to say, 308, 30.06, 762.39, or 762.54 r. All these can still be had for about 8 bucks or less per box, with 762.39 going for 4 to 5 bucks per box. the 30.06 and the 762.54 r will take out all size animals in North America, no matter how large.

Samuraigg
August 20, 2007, 01:45 AM
30.06 for me. I would trust my Garand to do what I need it to.

sm
August 20, 2007, 01:51 AM
30-06.

Orr89rocz
August 20, 2007, 01:51 AM
as far as RIFLE is concerned, i've have to go with a reliable bolt action. One maybe with iron sites on it but with a quick detach scope as well. scope for hunting accuracy but if your hunting dangerous game or any game in close quarters, you can take the scope off really quick to follow up.

Caliber, it have to be a 30-06 or so. proven effective on most everything. Hell they have shot elephants in the head with 303 british back in the day. 30-06 might do that well too. the various bullet weights from 55 grain sabots to 220 grain round noses, you cant go wrong at all!!

another one i like is 338 win mag or 375 H&H for larger game from deer on up. handloaded, these guys can be tamed down alot and effective for deer. hotloaded, they will take down most of the african game (375 will do everything) I think that is a versatile cartridge combo for larger species.

Bartkowski
August 20, 2007, 01:52 AM
odd" calibers, like 7mm magnum a 7mm rem mag isn't that rare of a caliber around me...but for the best caliber I have to go for 30-06.

worker
August 20, 2007, 04:49 AM
Mil calibers, therefore in order: any rifle in .308, .223
7.62x39, and lastly 7.62x54R -- and of course .22LR
:)

Also
The various 300 magnums all work well, but cost more, recoil more, and produce more muzzle blast. However they also deliver more energy and have a greater maximum point blank range. In truth they are not necessary for the vast majority of hunting situations.

is a quote that I disagree with (mostly because of generalization 'vast majority of hunting situations',
is similar, in my mind, to the argument that some hunter/writer made that 'AR-15' are not needed for hunting --
and that was quoted by anti-gun politician...)

JimmerJammerMrK
August 20, 2007, 07:46 AM
Another vote for .30-06.

BsChoy
August 20, 2007, 08:49 AM
gotta go with the 30-06....ammo is easy to find if you don't reload and will do all games animals just fine up to and including moose and elk. After that I am partial to the 6.5x55 swedish...but you need to hanload that one to get the best out of it.

Charles S
August 20, 2007, 09:42 AM
is a quote that I disagree with (mostly because of generalization 'vast majority of hunting situations',

After 25 years of hunting and a lot of experience with both magnums and non-magnums I stand by the quote. I own and love a number of 300 Magnums including a couple of different flavor short magnums and a couple of long action magnums. I don't believe 300's are necessary for the vast majority of hunting situations. Contrary to what you read in Peterson's Hunting, Outdoor Life, and Field and Stream game animals are not armor plated. Honestly the majority of hunters (myself included) are over gunned for the game they hunt. I believe that the 300s offer a degree of convenience to the shooter that can handle them. I also firmly believe that the 30-06 is the upper limit of recoil for a lot of shooters and a light weight 300 is beyond what the average shooter can handle. My favorite 300 Winchester weighs 7 1/4 pounds with scope and is quite interesting to shoot from the bench.

Since you disagree please explain how the 300 magnums don't produce more recoil and muzzle blast. Explain how they are cheaper to shoot than their non-magnum counterparts.

Since you disagree please name a number of situations where the 300s are necessary and can do something that the appropriately selected non-magnum cannot.

BTW if you are implying that I am stating that you should not hunt with magnums then you are wrong. People can hunt with whatever they choose as far as I am concerned. I was simply answering the question. IMHO magnums are not the ideal general purpose round for North America.

Orr89rocz
August 20, 2007, 10:39 AM
i've shot a factory remington 700 in 300 ultra mag. thought it was gonna rock my world but it didnt kick any harder than my 35 whelen with 200 grainers. maybe it was because the gun probly weighed 9 lbs or so. the long fairly thick barrel had alot to do with it.

i think a 300 wsm or win mag in a hefty gun will prove just fine for most shooters. But then again, do you want to lug around a 9-10 lb rifle? i know i wouldnt mind for most hunts but if i did alot of walking, i wouldnt want that rifle

DiN_BLiX
August 20, 2007, 10:45 AM
I just can't help but keep recommending the SKS. This rifle is just tough as nails, reliable and ammo is cheap. On the power scale it's on-line with the venerable .30-30 Winchester. Not to mention 10 rounds down-range as fast as you can pull the trigger.

Dispite the funds and oppertunity to buy more rifles, i can find one that would make my sks obsolete to me. For all the above mentioned reasons, an sks is a great "utility" rifle.

sansone
August 20, 2007, 10:46 AM
gosh it's hard to pick just one. kinda like picking just one tool to keep in the shed. you didn't mention if recoil was an issue. that would narrow down choices. you did mention cost so how about a savage .308? frugal choices both. // I just noticed cartridges are what you want discussed, not rifles. same pick

greyling22
August 20, 2007, 01:28 PM
can I vote for the .22 as well? I know of no other rifle you can also fish and bird hunt with and still eat the meat. I don't think it is legal, but dove tastes just the same off a power line as off the wing. they're fun too and you can take your girlfriend out shooting too.

I'll also vote for the 30/30 to sound like less of a backwoods hick. you can have a lot of fun with handloading that one.

SpeedAKL
August 20, 2007, 02:59 PM
I'm a big fan of .308 Winchester. It's relatively affordable for a higher-power cartridge, recoil is reasonable, it has solid power (though .30-06 hits harder downrange), and it is extremely accurate with great ballistics.

aspade
August 20, 2007, 03:30 PM
There are any number of good all around hunting rounds, most of which are so close to each other as to defeat the purpose, but cheap range ammo narrows it down to the milsurp calibers.

.308, .30-06, 7.62x54R. 8x57 and .303 if you don't mind cleaning up after corrosive primers. 6.5 Swede was - and is - a good one but the surplus ball is scarce and not very cheap any longer.

If I could only have one, it'd be the .308 - and I suspect it would work well on the bad folks who said I could only have one.

christcorp
August 20, 2007, 03:38 PM
I can't believe that no one has really spoken up and defended the 7mm rem mag at the best all around rifle round. There isn't 1 thing in North America that it can't take down; from small critters to moose and bear. It's a widely available round anywhere you go; including Canada, Europe and Australia. With the round selection, you are almost never over gunned or under gunned. You can shoot it effectively at just about any distance the normal person would shoot for game purpose; 500 yards. It isn't nearly as expensive of a gun or round compared to some of the 300 and up magnums.

There is no doubt in my mind that if I could ONLY have 1 rifle, for whatever reason, then it would be a 7mm rem mag. Of course I don't have to have only 1. In which case, to round out needs and such, I would add a 30-30 for short distances on large animals and a 22lr/mag for small animals at short distances. Add a 12 guage pump like a Rem 870, and you have covered just about any scenario you can think of.

I know there's a big following for the 308 and 30-06. In their time they were great caliber. I shoot/shot many rifles in those two calibers. Now, they are just a "Good" caliber. But hey, that's what opinions are for. later... Mike...

Charles S
August 20, 2007, 03:41 PM
Mike, reread my first post in this thread.

Brian Williams
August 20, 2007, 03:51 PM
Right now my all around rifle is a Win 70 compact classic in 7mm-08, and it could some day be replaced with a Mini mauser or CZ in 6.5 grendel.

MT GUNNY
August 20, 2007, 03:58 PM
30.06

christcorp
August 20, 2007, 04:17 PM
Sorry Charles; I overlooked where you mention the 7mm rem mag as one of the leaders. My bad. I have hunted a lot in the eastern USA and south. In those areas, the 308 and 30-06 will suffice. Having live in the Rockies for about 20 years, both calibers are pushing it. My first year here I was using a 30-06. When I saw the deer and elk on the other side of the draw or meadow at about 300+ yards, I knew I was in trouble. Needless to say I went and checked out some of the magnums.

I agree that the 300 and up magnums can be a bit of overkill. Although I shot a Weatherby 30-378 once and thought it was about the coolest thing in the world. Especially if you want to shoot something over in the next county. But I settled on the 7mm rem mag cause I can go from a 100 grain to a 175 grain and shoot prairie dogs all the way to sheep, elk, moose, and bear. When you can still maintain 1700-1900ft/lbs at 300 yards, with 3000+ft/sec out of the muzzle, there's pretty much nothing it can't take down. I've used it with 130 grain in Texas on Whitetail and it was perfect.

Again, the only thing that would make it a little on the "Not Perfect" scale, would be a shot at about 50 yards. It can easily be done, but in the thick brush of Texas and similar, it's nice to have an open site 30-30 for such a short distance. However, the 7mm rem mag will do it with practice. Later... Mike...

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