Opinions: Have .30-06, buy 7mm RemMag?


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ArmedBear
August 3, 2009, 02:36 PM
I have a .30-06 hunting rifle that I like.

A similar one has just gone on clearance for pretty cheap at a local place, in 7mm Rem Mag.

I'm tempted, but wondering whether there's much point in having a 7mm Rem Mag and a .30-06.

Are they too similar? Or do they each offer something unique?

I think you can tell that I'm not looking for an excuse to buy this or any rifle. I actually want to sell off some guns I never use. I would like to have rifles that I do find some use for.

A flat shooter sounds appealing. Local hunting includes antelope, mule deer, whitetails, elk, black bear, as well as rare tags for bighorns, mountain goats and moose.

I've thought about a .270 Winchester or .257 Wby Mag, and a .338 Win Mag to round out my hunting rifle selection. But a 7mm RM might be a good choice, too.

Thoughts?

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hotlead
August 3, 2009, 02:40 PM
Are you pulling my leg? 17,000+ posts?

Not much differance, but who cares. What kind of rifle? Price?
If it is a deal get it!

R.W.Dale
August 3, 2009, 02:40 PM
there isn't anything 7mm mag brings to the table you can't do with your 30-06

in terms of ballistics the differences are so minute as to be meaningless inside any sane hunting ranges

ArmedBear
August 3, 2009, 02:41 PM
I own a closet full of rifles I never use for anything.:)

Looking to pare down to the right things, I don't trust my "maybe it'll be good for something" thought process any more...

I know there are a lot of "buyers" here. I've been one. I'm turning into a "user" instead.:)

ArmedBear
August 3, 2009, 02:43 PM
sane hunting ranges

"Sane" in the Mountain West can be pretty far, by necessity, especially for pronghorns. What do you call "sane"?:)

Lou McGopher
August 3, 2009, 02:45 PM
What is your 30-06? Planning on selling it in order to get the 7mm?

R.W.Dale
August 3, 2009, 02:46 PM
"Sane" in the Mountain West can be pretty far, by necessity, especially for pronghorns. What do you call "sane"?:)

400yds :what:

any farther than that and you owe it to get closer to the critter anyhow, or for that matter if you do engage in 500yd+ hunting you need something spunkier than 7mm remington mag

ArmedBear
August 3, 2009, 02:55 PM
400 is about as far as I want to shoot. I practice in the field, and past 400, even off sticks with my best handloads, it's just not realistic or ethical to shoot farther IMO.

I was just making sure that didn't mean 200, which is a long shot in many places.

What is your 30-06? Planning on selling it in order to get the 7mm?

Weatherby Vanguard Sporter, and no.:)

I'm looking for something that offers a significantly different set of virtues, hence my interest in the .257 Weatherby Mag, which shoots much lighter bullets, but a lot flatter, for antelope and high desert mule deer, or a .338, for shooting much heavier bullets for elk, and maybe moose someday.

Float Pilot
August 3, 2009, 02:55 PM
I am not a big fan of the 7mm Rem Mag. If you are going to go with less magazine capacity and more recoil, why not just get a 300 Win Mag.

I love various other 7mm cartridges, but never thought the 7mm rem Mag to be worth looking at, compared to others.

R.W.Dale
August 3, 2009, 03:00 PM
I'm looking for something that offers a significantly different set of virtues, hence my interest in the .257 Weatherby Mag, which shoots much lighter bullets, but a lot flatter.

You may want to take a hard look at the 264win mag then. Basically a 7mm mag that shoots bullets with much higher BC's.

Or heck even the lowly 25-06, although in my opinion this one doesn't do much a properly loaded 30-06 won't. For that matter don't sell the EXCELLENT 260rem or it's grandfather 6.5x55 short either

Either way from the angle you're coming from it sounds to me like 6.5mm is the bullet diameter for you

WTBguns10kOK
August 3, 2009, 03:13 PM
All three of krochus' posts pretty much answer everything for you.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
August 3, 2009, 03:36 PM
FWIW, one thing I did to help me narrow down the calibers to make such decisions, was to eliminate the "odd number calibers", those being .25s and .27s. So .25-06 and my beloved .270 had to go. I decided the even calibers, representing metric whole or half millimeters of caliber, were plenty enough choices. So now they're either 5.5mm, 6mm, 6.5mm, 7mm, or 7.5mm (i.e. .22 cal, .24 cal, .26 cal, .28 cal, or .30 cal). So, I split the difference between a .270 and .30-06 and got a .280 remington.

Now, I have only have three main hunting rifles: My "PC" hunters are in 6mm (.243 win) and 7mm (.280 rem). My non-PC hunter is semi-auto in .260 rem.

The .280 rem can do 95% of what the 7mm remmag can do, and use a lot cheaper brass etc. to do it. The ranges at which the 7mm remmag will make an actual difference in trajectory are ranges which are beyond normal hunting ranges, and/or ranges at which hunting rifles chambered in 7mm remmag are not accurate enough to make a hit anyway. If I was gonna make a 7mm mag, I'd do it right and go STW or Dakota and put it in an expensive precision rig.

SlamFire1
August 3, 2009, 03:43 PM
I have one belted magnum, a 375 H&H. What a pain to properly resize the thing. I bought a Sinclair belted case gage, found that I had been setting the shoulder back too far, which would have resulted in early case head separations.

I believe belted magnums, and that includes the 7mm Rem Mag, are best left alone.

How about a nice 6.5 Swede?

CoRoMo
August 3, 2009, 03:57 PM
wondering whether there's much point in having a 7mm Rem Mag and a .30-06.

My opinion is, no. There's not much point to it IMO. Besides that, I'm no fan at all of the 7mm's. I'll take the .30-06, .243, .270, and maybe a .338 or .375 if I want a big bore, but I don't like the millimeter hunting cartridges for some reason. That's just me.

Ben Shepherd
August 3, 2009, 04:06 PM
AB-

Used to have family arguments in hunt camp all the time as I was growing up.

"7mms shoots flatter, and usually has better SD numbers." Grandpa would say.

Dad would reply with "The '06 has been getting it done for decades, with less powder and recoil than the 7mm. No reason to change."

Know what? All the deer that were popped with an old '06 were just as dead, and usually had less damaged meat. Several elk downed by the '06 without trouble as well.

Another thing to consider-

Do you handload? If so, do you already have a gun that uses that caliber, or are they all 30 caliber at present?

ArmedBear
August 3, 2009, 04:17 PM
I do handload. Got some nice loads worked up for that .30-06, too, including lead-free solids and conventional jacketed bullets. Been running around the local sagelands, popping balloons at 300+ yards with the thing, lately.

I haven't handloaded any 7mm at this point.

It does seem like, for it to be objectively worth getting into more hunting rifle calibers, they'd have to shoot a LOT flatter, or allow bullets a LOT heavier than .30-06 loads.

Ben Shepherd
August 3, 2009, 04:44 PM
I'd stay '06 then. One less caliber to monkey with, and regardless of arguments about ballistics or SD numbers, out to 400 yards the 06 is BY FAR the more versitile of the two.(Owing to the wide range of slug weights/construction avalible in 308 caliber)

1858
August 3, 2009, 05:02 PM
ArmedBear, you bring up a common problem with rifle/caliber selection. How many of us start with a plan to build up our collection of rifles and handguns? The first rifle that I bought specifically for hunting was a .300 WSM using the logic that it'd be good for just about anything. The second rifle I bought specifically for hunting was a 7mm-08 even though I really wanted a .30-06. There isn't much if any overlap between the 7mm-08 and .300 WSM, but there's a lot of overlap between the .30-06 and .300 WSM. I will buy a .30-06 eventually but only because I want one rather than need to fill a void in my collection.

If I were you, I'd pass on the 7mm Rem Mag even though a friend has one and likes it for deer and elk in Eastern Washington. Have you considered the 7mm-08? It's flat-shooting, has relatively light recoil and it has a reputation for accuracy well beyond 600 yards.


I believe belted magnums, and that includes the 7mm Rem Mag, are best left alone.


I don't have any problems with my .300 Win Mag ... it's a keeper.

:)

MCgunner
August 3, 2009, 06:09 PM
I wanted something more than my lowly .257 Roberts once, so I kicked this back and forth. I like 7mm bullet selection, the BCs are better than 30 and they have some meat on 'em unlike 6.5mm. Seems like a decent compromise for big game. Now, 7mm Rem Mag is closer, ballistically, to the .300 Win Mag than the .30-06. Inside 300 yards, an elk won't know the difference, but the 7 holds a good bit more energy down range even if you don't respect the slightly better trajectory. I can push a 150 grain bullet to 3200 fps. 160 grain partitions are pretty danged accurate in my gun at over 3000 fps and can put down the heaviest of game.

Now, if I'd already had a 30-06, I wouldn't have bothered. The difference ain't worth having both. If I got another gun than a .30-06 that was already in my possession, I'd probably go up to .338. I don't need a .338, I'm just sayin'. :D

So, anyway, I'm thinkin' the big 7 can give you another 100 yards across that canyon, just going on my exterior ballistics print outs. It's way out there that the extra BC pays off and, it IS starting out faster, too.

And spare me the "be a hunter and get closer" comments. I'm an avid handgun and BP hunter and will be bow hunting this year. I know about getting closer. I'm just comparing two rifle calibers here and the 7mm Rem Mag is the winner, no question, if you just simply compare the ballistics. That's really all you have to do. And, the 7 mag's recoil is about the same, too boot!

Like I said, though, if I'd already had a .30-06, I wouldn't have bothered with the big 7. I certainly wouldn't sell a good gun for the caliber difference.

bpl
August 3, 2009, 06:12 PM
If its a good deal and you want it, buy it! It'll fill the same role as the 30-06 though. You might really think about whether you want another caliber more though, especially if, like most of us, your gun fund is not unlimited.

Ky Larry
August 3, 2009, 06:13 PM
If I were in your position, I'd pass on the 7 mag. It won't do anything your .30-06 can do and can actually do less. .30-06 has a wider range of bullets (110gr-220gr) that can be loaded for everything from critter control to moose.How about something in 6.5X55 or .280? I had a Weatherby Vanguard in 7mm Mag. It shot very well and I had no problem with it. It just sat in the safe and I didn't shoot it much so I traded it. Nothing wrong with it, I just like my .30-06 and my .308 better.

P.S. You can flame me if you want about the 7 mag doing less than the .30-06. I just ment that the .30-06 can be loaded with heavier bullets.

DRYHUMOR
August 3, 2009, 07:05 PM
Some learning curves are gradual some are steep, and some are expensive. :eek:

The largest magnum I had was the .340 Weatherby followed by the .338 Win, the .300 Win, last to the 7mm. All shoot flat, all deliver good energy, the first two are more expensive to feed. No regrets in having them, no regrets in selling them, no regrets in shooting them. And they all shot pretty good.

They all did what they were supposed to do.

Just like your '06.

I have a 7mm (2), they are what I call "retired" and "semi retired". I have the same thoughts on occasion of paring down to one or three rifles.

If I could just quit thinking about 375 H&H's every now and then I'd be alright. :rolleyes:

Deltaboy
August 3, 2009, 07:10 PM
Buy more 30-06 ammo and keep the Ought 6.

MCgunner
August 3, 2009, 07:45 PM
I have a 7mm (2), they are what I call "retired" and "semi retired". I have the same thoughts on occasion of paring down to one or three rifles.

Yeah, i have 3 rifles and hardly ever use the big 7, but then, I don't live in Idaho. I don't really need it down here. I have my .257 Roberts and a .308 Winchester, both nice short action rifles that shoot 3/4 MOA with their best loads. I got to thinkin' that the .308 and the 7 mag have some overlap, and in fact, I might rather carry that little model 7 in the mountains 'cause it's so danged handy and light. Yeah, the 7 is a better long range big critter gitter, but I haven't even shot the thing in 10 years. :rolleyes: It's just a little much down here and I haven't hunted the mountains or the west Texas desert in a while.

I was thinkin' since it's a Savage and easy to do, I might swap the barrel out for a .338 Win Mag and get something I can smack a BIG critter with, but then, I'll have to be able to afford a big critter hunt, maybe Nilgai, and I can't right now. So, screw it, the big 7 shoots great, LOL! In fact, it'll kill any Nilgai I'll ever wanna kill with a Nosler partition 160. That's a critter that begs for a belted magnum, too. 7 is a might small for those things, but will work. .338 is preferred.

I think I'm going to set the 7 up for night hunting hogs, though. It's not the power I want so much as the superb scope that I wanna keep on that rifle, an older Weatherby Supreme, very bright scope, 44mm objective. In full moonlight, I don't need no stinkin' spotlight. Almost like having night vision. :D I mean, I ain't usin' the thing for anything else, might as well.

jmr40
August 3, 2009, 08:14 PM
Not enough difference to put up with a longer heavier gun and more recoil in my opinion. If you want something different look at the 280.

MCgunner
August 3, 2009, 08:57 PM
I thought about the 280 when I bought the 7 mag. I figured I could always load DOWN to 280 ballistics. Same rifle (2" more barrel), same price, I got the mag.

jmr40
August 3, 2009, 09:28 PM
All true. I won't argue that any of the mentioned rounds are bad, or won't get the job done. It is just that the 280 is close enough to the 7mag to suit me. And I have a rifle just enough different from the masses to stand out.

MCgunner
August 3, 2009, 11:01 PM
Well, I like the 280 a lot and sorta for the same reason, it's not one everyone pounces on, low in popularity, yet high in performance. I've always liked the .41 mag for the same reason. But, it just came down to logic for me at the time. I'm glad I got the 7 mag 'cause I later got the .308. I'd be in a real quandary trying to decide whether to carry a .280 or the .308. LOL Since I got it, I've used nothing else but that .308. It's a fine caliber, too. :D

DKA
August 3, 2009, 11:05 PM
Have both and like them a lot. You should keep your 06 and get the 7MM Mag.

gyp_c2
August 3, 2009, 11:24 PM
...save the money and buy more .30 ammo!
http://emoticons4u.com/smoking/rauch06.gif

lefteyedom
August 4, 2009, 12:18 AM
The 257 Weatherby, your 30.06 and a 338 Win Mag you would have the perfect North American three gun set up.
The 7 are great but the Big 7s, 7 Rem Mag, 7 STW, 7 Weatherby all try to burn way too much powder in a small tube. 7-08, 7X57, and 280 Rem are all better balanced cartridges and able to handle any game in north America short of Big Bears.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
August 4, 2009, 12:32 AM
Well, let's not kid ourselves - MC Gunner has it right when he says it DOES have a significant amount of more flat shooting performance - but ONLY at looooong ranges (out at 350 or 400 yards plus). But few people live in the desert-y areas where you can see that far (little or no forest canopy), and even fewer live in those areas AND are willing to do what it takes to accurize the rifle AND utilize extensive solid field rests in order to actually make hits at those ranges. Yes, I know there's long range hunters that shoot at 600-1000 yards, but those guys really really know what they're doing, and are using essentially benchrest guns ON benches with serious optics, to do their "hunting".

ArmedBear
August 4, 2009, 12:47 AM
There are many areas here where you can see, and could theoretically shoot, a lot farther -- both in sage desert and in the mountains in steep terrain.

My practice so far has led me to this set of guidelines:

Offhand, standing, 150 yards max with hasty sling.
Seated, 250 yards max with elbows supported.
Using shooting sticks, seated, 350 yards max (so far -- some refinement still left to do).

Those are the maximum distances where I can pop balloons. I did pop a couple standing offhand at 300 yards, but if I can't pop them ALL, I don't think I should hunt that way.:)

I MIGHT be able to pull off a 400 yard shot with sticks. I'm going to do some more field practice and see. Even from a solid machine rest, though, a good 3/4 MOA rifle would shoot no better than 3" groups in dead-still air.

I figure 400 is right about where a .30-06 really starts to tail off, even with good polymer-tipped bullets, good loads, etc. If I don't plan to shoot any farther, it should hold its own. In the real world, with wind, imperfect rests, adrenaline, etc., I really don't think that I could call anything past 400 an ethical shot, at least for me. Probably closer to 300, and not just a quick offhand shot, either.

I figure I should practice FARTHER away than I would shoot while hunting, not just practice at 100 yards and pray that my rifle and I will hit something at 4 times that distance when the chips are down.

The 7mm Rem Mag's numbers do look pretty good. If I didn't already have a rifle...

So, I'm sort of back to my original thought -- a serious elk rifle like a .338 or even a tad bigger, and a crazy flat shooter like a .257 Wby for antelope and the like, might be worth adding, with the .30-06 to fill in the middle of the spectrum, act as a backup rifle, etc.

Thanks!

jpwilly
August 4, 2009, 01:01 AM
I've looked over a number of ballistics charts. The 150gr and 165gr bullets from the 30-06 are within 2" to 3" of the 7mm Rem Mag at 400yards with very similar energy.

For flat shooting the .270 would be one of the best with 130gr bullets.

jmr40
August 4, 2009, 07:40 AM
If you look at the hotter loads such as Hornady light magnums you will find the standard calibers such as 270,280,30-06 will hang with the magnums at long range pretty well. A hot loaded 140 grain 280 will be within 150 foot pounds of energy and only drop 2" more than a 150 grain 300win mag at 500 yards. With heavier bullets you can get more energy out of the 300, but with more drop. With todays better bullets I do not think it would matter a bit to anything you hit at those ranges whether it was a 180 grain 30cal or 140 grain 284 cal.

I have not looked closeley at the 270 or 30-06 but expect them to be pretty close as well.

natman
August 4, 2009, 09:56 AM
If you were thinking about starting from scratch there might be something to talk about, but I suspect in the end the 30-06 would win out anyway. Get some Light Magnum 150 grain loads for long shots.

Since you already own a 30-06 you're happy with, there is no point in even thinking about a 7mm Mag.

Arkel23
August 4, 2009, 12:58 PM
Get a .300 win or wby mag or a .300wsm and call it a day. Edit: There is a difference between the 7mm rem mag and 30-06 the 7mm rem mag is push a 150 gr at 3,000 fp/s+ while the 30-06 doesn't break that barrier. I have to lengthen this 4 more characters.

Uncle Mike
August 4, 2009, 01:42 PM
I'd get the .257 WBY-
You have everything else covered....Honestly, how many 400y or even 300y shots have you made on game....

Your ol' 30-06 will do you just fine for the most part, the .257WBY is different enough to offer you some fun, and it will do nicely at range on the appropriately sized game.

ArmedBear
August 4, 2009, 02:15 PM
how many 400y or even 300y shots have you made on game....


None. But I haven't hunted pronghorns yet.

Getting within 300 yards of the things is getting close to them, since they avoid cover and run like hell at the slightest provocation.

http://bp1.blogger.com/_C8zCeN0NCZs/RrSeFBT7_5I/AAAAAAAAAPg/oO5LKwg27wk/s320/Moiese+Pronghorn.jpg

usmc1371
August 4, 2009, 03:07 PM
I hunt in pretty much the same kind of terrain so I know your pain.
I started out with the 30-06 and it worked just fine for years, the only reason I switched to the 300 wm was a little more range and energy but so far I haven't needed it. My little bro swears by his 338-378 weatherby cause it shoots flatter and carries WAY more energy than the 300's and the sevens don't even compare But its expensive to shoot, heavy to carry, and Very NOT fun to shoot with out the muzzle break. I have never seen much diffarence in the 7mag and 06 I think you have a couple choices: 1 get a rifle that shoots a larger/heavier bullet for elk like 338wm :2 get something that shoots way flatter than the 06 like 270 weatherby, 7mm stw both of wich will work fine for elk but with light bullets shoot laser flat and would be sweet speed goat rounds.
All that being said my longest shot at any game animal was a 340yd shot at a bull elk in the saw tooth Mtns in your neck of the woods. Steep down hill, elk facing almost away, last day, glad I had the 300wm but I don't think the elk would have known the dif if I had been packing my 06. My next rifle will be a Light Weight prob in 30-06 since I notice I seem to carry my hunting rifles way more than I shoot them. Hope some of this long windedness helps.

jmr40
August 4, 2009, 09:11 PM
Quote:

"Get a .300 win or wby mag or a .300wsm and call it a day. Edit: There is a difference between the 7mm rem mag and 30-06 the 7mm rem mag is push a 150 gr at 3,000 fp/s+ while the 30-06 doesn't break that barrier. I have to lengthen this 4 more characters."

This is not true. Hornady lists factory loads showing the 150 grain 30-06 at 3100fps. Even the 165 is listed at 3015fps.

My reloading manuals show more 150 grain 30-06 loadings at 3000+ fps than 150 grain 7mm Rem mag loads.

jmr40
August 4, 2009, 09:22 PM
From www.hornady.com

.30-06 Sprg., 150 gr. IB 85199
Velocity (fps) / Energy (ft-lbs)
Muzzle 100 yd 200 yd 300 yd 400 yd 500 yd
3100/3200 2867/2736 2645/2330 2434/1973 2233/1660 2041/1387

Trajectory (inches)
Muzzle 100 yd 200 yd 300 yd 400 yd 500 yd
-1.50 1.40 0.00 -6.40 -18.60 -37

MCgunner
August 4, 2009, 09:29 PM
Hmm, I've seen the 7mm STW mentioned once or twice in this thread. It was all the hot stuff in the rags 2 decades ago for just that sort of long range stuff. It's pushing several hundred FPS faster than the 7mm Rem Mag. I've never felt the need, just sayin'.

.257 Weatherby would be THE gun for those pronghorns, very flat shooting and light on the shoulder. But, the STW might work pretty well and can shoot elk across those canyons, too. Might could find an STW in a M70 classic. I think Winchester chambered it and it was pretty popular due to all the hype at the time.

Sorry if I'm sounding expensive. I never really care if it ain't my wallet. LOL!

RonE
August 5, 2009, 12:15 AM
What difference does it make what cartridge will do what? 7mm Mag and 30-06 are not in the same class. The '06 is much more versitle insofar as bullet selection but the 7mm Mag is faster and flatter.

The real questions are: Do I need another rifle? Do I need 7mm Rem Mag? Is 7mm Rem Mag better than 30-06? Should I get rid of my '06?

The answers are: Yes, always. Yes, of course. Who cares? No, never!

What is the next question?

Dr_2_B
August 5, 2009, 12:45 AM
I'd say stay with 06

BENELLIMONTE
August 5, 2009, 09:05 AM
ARMED'
I am currently looking at Bob Forkers "AMMO & Ballistics2".
When comparing the '06 Federal165gr SierraGameKing load vs the 7mm Rem mag Federal165gr Sierra GameKing it lists the following: '06 with a BC of .470 vs 7mm of .616;
'06 muzzle velocity @ 2800fps vs 7mm @ 2950, 06 muzzle energy @ 2870 ft-lbs vs 7mm@3190,
06 drop @ 300yds when zeroed @ 200yds 7.8"
7mm drop@300yds when zeroed@200yds 6.4
06 energy @ 300yds 1840ft-lbs
7mm energy@ 300yds 2300ft-lbs.

Hope this helps,
'MONTE

Uncle Mike
August 8, 2009, 05:33 PM
As was said... use the Hornady Light Magnum 165gr SST at 3015fps (30-06)..

300y drop with a 200y zero is but 6.7" I think, don't hold me to that.

That mirrors the 7 mag trajectory(160gr) out to say... 400y, give or take a smidge.

Approaches the 300 Win Mag terminals....

So, you can be VERY versatile with the 30-06 just by changing ammo loadings.(assuming factory loads)

Sounds like you want a NEW toy... nothing wrong with that... now to decide which caliber you want, since the majority of them will do what you want and still have some left over... why don't you read up on all the different calibers/loadings, history, et cetera and use something you find that perks your interest concerning that particular cartridge to make your decision.

You might like the 257 because of its design history... or the 284 because of its use of the magical 6.5mm bullet...the 260 because it's yet another 308 based cartridge... who knows, but most of em' will do you just fine in your quest for a speed goat rifle.

Keep in mind... what's the BEST rifle/cartridge combo for one guy just plain ol' sux for the next guy...!

Ben Shepherd
August 8, 2009, 06:08 PM
So, I'm sort of back to my original thought -- a serious elk rifle like a .338 or even a tad bigger, and a crazy flat shooter like a .257 Wby for antelope and the like, might be worth adding, with the .30-06 to fill in the middle of the spectrum, act as a backup rifle, etc.


Or you could do what I do-

Zero your '06 with your most commonly used 165 grain load. Then just change slug construction for the game being pursued, while staying with the 165 weight. If your really going to limit your range to between 3-350 yards you'll never even really have to re-zero.(ALWAYS fire a few at targets first to verify of course). So far this has worked for me, I haven't tested any that shifted over an inch at 100 yards.

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