Store Credit burning a hole in my pocket, what to get?


August 3, 2009, 10:09 AM
I traded in some of my spare knives and flashlights at my local gun store for store credit, so now I have about $230 in store credit to play with....

I'm considering a few options;

1: buy $230 worth of ammo, mostly .30-06 to shore up my supply (I know I could buy from the CMP for less, I just have to track down my birth certificate for proof of citizenship), downside is ammo is a consumable, and after I shoot it up, I have only the empty brass to show for it, I don't yet have the reloading hardware for .30-06

2: buy reloading hardware for the '06 (can the Lee Pro 1000 handle '06 brass?) downside is that I have no Large Rifle primers and they're in short supply right now, plus I'd need rifle propellant and bullets, maybe a case trimmer and other accesories I haven't thought of yet...

3: buy a Yugo SKS, in 90% condition, asking price is $275, so I'd have to put down a little cash on my end, pros; ammo is inexpensive and easily available, cons; not really a fan of semis, have to plunk down some cash for it, what's the accuracy of the SKS like?

4: buy a Marlin 336 in .35 Rem, asking price is $230, so it would essentially be free to me, I love the looks and feel of a good lever action, rifle comes with see-through rings and an old, slightly foggy Bushnell Trophy 1-6X scope, I could always move the 3-9X 40mm Trophy off my Savage MkII-G .22lr boltgun and on to the 336, and put an AO zoom scope on the Savage (Mueller APV?), downside, ammo is expensive and only available at the gunstore

I'd like to get out of this with as little out-of-pocket as possible, the gun would be used as a general purpose rifle, hunting coydogs, perhaps deer, target shooting, and putting down the inevitable Zombie Uprising ;)

the SKS shoots cheaper ammo, but would cost me more out of pocket, the 336 shoots more expensive ammo, but would be essentially free to me, I don't see either rifle being shot beyond 200 yards, 75-150ish would be the max, I have my Savage 111 .30-06 for long-range shots

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Deer Hunter
August 3, 2009, 10:10 AM
Reloading gear.

Get something that will pay for itself.

August 3, 2009, 10:49 AM
Reloading gear.

Get something that will pay for itself.


Make the windfall work for you.
Later you can buy almost any caliber you want and not have to worry so much about the price of ammo.

Tim the student
August 3, 2009, 11:04 AM
+1 for reloading gear. Makes perfect sense. Don't worry about finding components now, the supply is opening up again.

August 3, 2009, 11:46 AM
Do you have a 357mag? if so get the Marlin in 35. Keep your eyes open and get the reloading stuff at a later date for less.

August 3, 2009, 12:06 PM
I am trying to figure out how one trades in knives and flashlights for store credit. I would go for the reloading supplies. Then you can make your own and go up or down in power of loads and have a variety.

August 3, 2009, 12:44 PM
Well, the gunshop I go to, Kittery Trading Post in Kittery Maine, sells new and used knives and flashlights (high-end lights like SureFire and Inova) as well as new and used guns, if they feel they can resell it, they will issue store credit for it, I traded in a couple of my spare Spydercos and a spare SureFire, they'll have no problem reselling those

I'll stop in tonight, find out what I need for reloading supplies, if my Pro 1000 will work with .30-06, I may go for the reloading supplies, depending on the total cost of the equipment, if they have a Lee Loader, I might just go that way, cheapest way to get into rifle reloading

actually, come to think of it, they *do* have a set of used Lee .30-06 dies that are just missing the decapping pin, wonder how much that would be to replace, plus I'd need a new base thingy that holds the cartridges for reloading....hold on, just checked the Lee website and the Pro1000 cannot reload '06, the OAL is too long, D'OH!

So, that means I'll need another press setup for '06, hmm, maybe I should get that Lee Loader, I'm not looking to churn out ammo, so the lack of speed won't be an issue...

Plus, the Lee Loader is so inexpensive, I could actually buy both the rifle and a .30-06 Lee Loader....

...the thing is, I *really* would like to get a lever gun, I've been reading up on the .35 Rem cartridge, and the only real downsides I see to it are price and availability, it seems to use the similar concept of "low pressure, big hole" like the .45ACP, a 200 grain load, depending on propellant, is in the 26,000 to 30,000 PSI range, a 170 grain 30-30 is in the 38,000 to 40,000 range, I'd hazard a guess that the big .35's recoil impulse would be more of a slow shove, like the .45, I prefer the "shovey" recoil impulse, the .30-06 is more of a quick punch in the shoulder, and a 12-gauge full power 2 3/4 or 3" magnum load is a hard slam in the shoulder

August 3, 2009, 03:03 PM
Maybe something like this.....
low end I know, but it will get you started.
I bought mine on ebay last year for about $70 delivered. the seller even threw in some dies and .308 bullets

August 3, 2009, 06:23 PM
I went back to the store today....
The Marlin .35 Rem had already been sold, D'OH! so that one's down
The Yugo SKS didn't fit me, stock was too short, and it was in pretty poor condition, and the sight picture was horrible, so that one's down as well

I took a look at the Lee Loaders, but they seem too cheesy and cheap, how good is the ammo made with a Lee Loader?

They do have a Lee kit set up with the Breech Lock Challenger press for around $99ish, all I'd need after that is the powder, primers, and bullets, it makes the most sense out of all the possibilities, yet I still want a lever gun....

However, if I got a lever gun, I'd have to start stocking another ammo type (.30-30 or .35 Rem), and I'm trying to limit the kinds of ammo I have to stock, right now I keep .22LR, .45ACP, 12-gauge shells (slugs, buck, and standard shot) and .30-06 on hand

If I get another reloading setup, it will give me the versatility to make up different '06 loads, light recoiling target rounds, general-purpose .30-30 level rounds, or even big heavy thumpers, and getting a standard single-stage press will give me the ability to reload whatever additional calibers I want, if I get a .30-30 or .223, or 7.62x39, or .308 or whatever else I choose down the line, I'll have the ability to reload for it

At the moment, I only reload .45ACP, the only other caliber I have that I'd want to reload for is the '06, mainly due to the cost of factory ammo

still, I feel that the reloading setup is the more "boring" of my choices, a new gun is more fun, the big limitation there is I don't want to spend any out-of-pocket money for another gun, and there's not much I can get for $240

I have been contemplating adding another rimfire to the collection, a .22 Mag, or .17HMR, but once again, that brings up the "stocking up on another caliber" issue again, the fewer calibers I have to feed, the more I can stock up on the ones I *do* have.....

The reloading setup would be the more logical choice, a new gun would be a fun choice....

then again, what's more fun than shooting a gun I already own and not worrying about ammo costs, or ammo shortages, plus I get the ability to make my own custom loads!

okay, looks like my logical side is winning, damn my Vulcan mindset!

August 3, 2009, 10:43 PM
Okay, just came back from the gun store with some new toys

Lee Loader in .30-06
1 Lb Hodgdon 4831SC
Large Rifle primers (CCI Benchrest)
Hornady 185Gr soft point bullets
Lyman dial caliper

I went with the Lee Loader for a few reasons, mainly because of the price, but the threads I've read on the Loader have also pointed out that it puts together some darned good ammo, and the fact that it neck sizes only, thus making the brass last longer, and keeping the fire-formed cases perfect for the rifle that shot it are also benefits

I also liked the portability, simplicity and durability of the setup, I can reload anywhere, not tied down to my bench, it'll be fun to work up some loads at the range

I'm still a little iffy on the whole "hammer the case into the primer" setup, so I'll be getting a .30-06 shell holder for my Lee hand primer tool, I'll deprime, charge the case, and seat the bullet in the Loader, but I'll reprime the cases with the hand tool, as it's safer

There's no entry in my Lee reloading manual for Hodgdon powder, but there is an entry for IMR4831 (no SC though), so I used the IMR minimum load stats

the cartridge is loaded with 52.8 grains of IMR4831 under a Hornady 165Gr JSP bullet, according to my Lyman caliper, the OAL is 3.299, according to the Lee reloading manual, Min. OAL is 3.335, did I seat the bullet too far in? I can't see the cannelure like I can on a Federal Fusion 170Gn reduced recoil load (my comparison cartridge)

Do I need to pull the cartridge apart and start over? seating the bullet right to the cannelure? the rifle seems to chamber the round just fine, and the OAL does not change

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
August 3, 2009, 10:46 PM
Marlin, Marlin! That's a good price on the 336.

August 4, 2009, 05:41 AM
Is that the hand held reloader? If so its the same one I have and I like it a lot. It works really well. But I am looking for one that mounts to a bench in the future.

August 4, 2009, 01:04 PM
I'd say the Marlin as well, just through those damn see through mounts out the door.

WNC Seabee
August 4, 2009, 03:02 PM
The Kitterey Trading Post is a fun fun fun place to wander around! I think it tops Cabelas and Bass Pro.

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