best 30-06 semi-autos?


November 14, 2003, 04:42 AM
I was thinking of buying Skunkabilly's SLB 2000, then I thought: are there other decent semi-auto 30-06's, esp with 10+rd magazines?

Well, are there?

What are the 5 or 6 top choices? Price doesn't matter at this stage of list generation.

A semi-auto BAR sounds nice!

A chart like this one (below) ought to answer the question:
Which rifle? Price? reliability? ease of use? ease of repair? magazine capacity?

thanks all!

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November 14, 2003, 04:57 AM
the FN49 is a very nice rifle. 10 round capacity

-i'm not too sure about price. i checked gunbroker and they seem to be priced around 800-1000$.
-very reliable. my father has shot several thousand rounds through his and the only failures he experienced were from crappy ammo. a plus is the adjustable gas system.
-if you can figure out how to fire and load an SKS you'll be fine.
-i've never had to fix one before but it is fairly simple to field strip for cleaning.
-10 rounds. but a 20 round removeable magazine is avaliable for those chambered in .308 and offered by SOG.

Beetle Bailey
November 14, 2003, 05:01 AM
I believe it's called a BM 59 and it's an Italian Garand that uses a 20 rd detactable magazine.

November 14, 2003, 05:07 AM
i was thinking of this:

FN 1949 semi-auto contract rifle. Used by the Argentine Navy, this is a very rare model. Although the Belgium Fabrique Nationale Modele 49 was offered in many calibers and used in many European and South American countries and Egypt, this is the only version in .308 caliber with a Detachable 20Rd magazine. These rifles are very rare and have never been offered for sale anywhere before now. A small quantity was manufactured and we have been after them for 20 years... finally got 'em! These rifle were issued but haven't been hurt... a real collectors' investment rifle. Each rifle comes with one 20Rd magazine and a bayonet with scabbard, We are offering these for sale while they last for...

November 14, 2003, 08:38 AM
Best semi-auto .30-06 I can think of, except only holds 8 rounds...

US Rifle Cal .30 M1...Popularly known as "The Garand"

November 14, 2003, 10:48 AM
An SKS in 30-06 would be ideal! Easy to strip, operate, and clean. I never heard of one though.

I like the self-adjusting gas regulator on the Garand. Makes it simple to use whatecer ammo without worry.

Too bad those fn 49's are not C&R!

So far, the 30-06's on the list are:
1. M1 Garand: $600-1000+, 4+ reliability,
good: easy to use w/ self-regulating gas device,
good lots of parts,
bad 'garand thumb',
bad 'ping' as it ejects clips,
need to keep striaght what to grease and what to leave dry,
8 rd capacity.

2. SLB 2000: $800-1000+, too new tocomment on reliability (anyone?)
good: magazine fed,
bad: limited parts (again since its so new)
10-rd factory mags


So far so good! Anyone own a 7400?

November 14, 2003, 10:53 AM
What I like about the SLB is that it's accurate and reliable in typical boring HK fashion. It was sighted in at the factory and was good to go out of the box. I had to fiddle with my M1A forever just to get it sighted in. I wish the manual told me what screws I had to tighten down to keep all the pieces from slipping off instead of saying my M1A doesn't require anything other than cleaning the action, barrel and occassional cleaning of the gas piston to run. Manuals lie. :rolleyes: (either that or I can't read)

Downside of the SLB like I said it's a pain to disassemble. Thankfully the manual has pictures.

November 14, 2003, 11:13 AM
What is the older HK .30-06 semi auto hunting rifle they made several years ago? Are they reliable? Do they break? I saw one at a shop and started thinking...


November 14, 2003, 11:21 AM
Haven't had it around long enough for it to break. Only 'issue' is that it stopped going into battery when I didn't tighten some of the screws hard enough; I have a gentle touch and don't like to force things :o

Matt G
November 14, 2003, 12:11 PM
I'm seeing mostly military rifles, here. What about commercial rifles, the Remington 7400 (, offered in '06 both as a carbine (18 1/2" bbl) or as a rifle (22" bbl), and with wood or synthetic furniture? Someone was telling me that someone's offering a 10 rd magazine for it, too. Looks benign, but has some rather impressive ability.

How about also the Browning BAR commercial hunting rifle?

November 14, 2003, 01:23 PM
I was wondering the exact same things about the same rifles (7400 and BAR)!! But I dont know anyone who owns one.

Any others out there?

What about the older remingtons? was it the 740? I dunno.

How about the sem-auto 1919's? Probably no parts as they are cusom jobs?

Bill Hook
November 14, 2003, 01:57 PM
-i'm not too sure about price. i checked gunbroker and they seem to be priced around 800-1000$.

You can still find them for around $600, sometimes less. It'd have to be pretty minty or a rare variant (like Belgian Congo) to warrant $1000.

November 14, 2003, 02:03 PM
I was looking at the 7400s and BARs as well but couldn't find 10 round mags which were a requirement.

November 14, 2003, 04:09 PM
Browning quality has really deteriorated over the last 5-10 years----I'd stay away from the BAR.

AZ Jeff
November 14, 2003, 04:35 PM
cpileri wrote:

So far, the 30-06's on the list are:
1. M1 Garand: $600-1000+, 4+ reliability,
good: easy to use w/ self-regulating gas device,
good lots of parts,
bad 'garand thumb',
bad 'ping' as it ejects clips,
need to keep striaght what to grease and what to leave dry,
8 rd capacity.
Your list of issues with the M1 makes it sound like it's a finicky rifle. If that were true, then we should all be speaking German now. :D

That said, I must respond to some of your "observations" above, and I am coming from the perspective of owning several Garands, and shoot them in all sorts of competitions.

1. "M1 thumb" is a non-issue for those who practice the technique even slightly. Only the truly inept will regularly get themselves mashed in the action of that rifle. The rifle is NOT the vicious thumb eater that some claim, unless you are totally a klutz.

2. The "ping" issue is TOTALLY a non-issue, unless you are a mall-ninja. WHO or WHAT that you will shoot at will hear the "ping" of the clip ejecting? Get out of fantasyland, and realize that the "ping" has no meaning to a civilian shooter. Lastly, even those who carried the Garand in harms way will tell you that the "ping" is NOT the issue that so many claim it is/was. The stories of the "ping" being the demise of many users of the M1 is URBAN LEGEND.

3. How is the need to employ grease on a few areas such a mental challenge to the user? If a bazillion draftees inducted from 1939 to about 1970 could master applying grease to keep the M1 running, I figure about anyone can. In fact, I use very little oil on my M1's at all-it's almost exclusively grease. Just remember, when cleaning and lubing the M1, reach for the tube of grease instead of oil, and it's much simpler.

November 14, 2003, 04:53 PM
Speaking of the Ping, is there something like a small bell that can be put in AR-15s or a Beretta that make them ping? The ping is just way :cool:

November 14, 2003, 04:55 PM
I think Saiga makes an AK clone in .30-06. Don't know much about their reliability, accuracy, etc. though. Looks like it only has 4 round capacity though.

November 14, 2003, 05:56 PM
I agree with Az Jeff; M1 thumb is a non-issue. M1 finger, on the other hand:

Make darn sure that bolt is locked all the way back, not merely resting on the follower! It happened once, and I'll be damned if it's going to happen again!

November 14, 2003, 06:05 PM
Kevlarman, that isn't as bad as Karambit wrists :banghead:

November 14, 2003, 06:56 PM
I guess its no worse than Hakim Hand!

Gee whizz AZ Jeff, take it easy. They're just observations. When trying to choose between quality rifles, you begin to pick nits.

I found the EAA sight with the Saiga 100 in 30-06, and some infor around; but no one who is selling them. Course, that 4-rd mag would have to go...

I would say 10-rds is the minimum mag capacity, although I am soon leaving the PRM and will then be able to have higher capacity feeding devices. But certainly no less than 8 (i.e. garand).

The 'older' rem was the 742, and one random guy on the net says he liked his.

Still seeking...

Johnny Guest
November 14, 2003, 07:30 PM
Discounting the old, long recoil rifles, mainly because they were chambered for now-obsolete cartridges - - -

I believe the chronology of the Remingtons for modern cartridges goes - -

740 - - 1950s
742 - - I bought one in about 1972
7400 - - Current

I'm sorry - - I cannot describe the mechanical differences in these models. I believe they are/were all offered in .243 or 6 mm Rem (if not both,) .270, .280, .308, and .30-06. I probably missed missed a caliber or two.

Standard factory magazine capacity is four. I had a seven- or eight-round magazine, called a Collyer Clip. A similar product has been offered by at least one other company.

Neither the Remington, the Browning (sporting) autoloader, nor the H&K 770 were intended to stand up to the abuses of military-style employment. This is not to say they are delicate instruments - - Must that they were never intended to hold up to hundreds of rounds at a stint. The factory sights are not very well protected. The rifles are not constructed for field stripping without tools under field conditions.

The semi-auto only version of the fabulous 1918 B.A.R. is offered from time to time. This was originally a squad automatic weapon and weighs around 20 pounds in field trim. Wonderful weapon, served well from late 1918 all the way into the Vietnam conflict. I've seen photos of some still in use in the Philippine Islands. But it is a bit heavy and unwieldy for single-person operation, and, when they can be located, they are pretty expensive for what you get. They are approximately as "practical" as a semi-auto Thompson Gun is, used as a pistol caliber carbine. There are better choices for everyday use, and they are sold more for nostalgia's sake than for field work.

Much as I love the '06 cartridge, I think I'd choose a .308 for harsh field use. If I DID want to keep with the '06, I'd choose an M1 Garand, or possible a synthetic stocked Rem 7400.


November 14, 2003, 08:04 PM
I've owned all the 74-series Remingtons in '06 at various times, excepting the 74 itself. They are all downright miserable to tear down to the bolt. The 740s/742s were somewhat troublesome, and parts are getting a little difficult to come by. The extractors were puny and they developed bolt chatter after awhile, which eventually compromised reliability. The 7400 is a much better rifle, and they corrected most all of the problems with the earlier guns; re-designed the bolt lugs, modified the extractor and/or it's recess, etc. We have a used 7400 (nice wood & blue) I picked up for $350 a couple of years ago. It has digested several hundred rounds of IMR reloads without so much as a hiccup, and with good ammo and glass it crowds a minute of angle pretty hard.

I'm thinking it was CDNN Investments who had 10-round mags for this gun, but I have no experience with them. I believe they have been manufactured by a couple of outfits over the years, both in opaque plastic and metal. Seems like "Eagle" was who made the plastic ones.

The 7400 is close to perfect with Williams apertures on it. If you are considering the synthetic-stocked version, go to a gunshop/sporting goods counter and "try one on" first. My younger son and I looked at these pretty hard for awhile, but the comb of the stock was so darn hign that we could barely get our heads down low enough to see the sights. Try one first, anyhow.

Most of the BARs I have shot over the years were in magnum calibers, and they were very good rifles. Haven't messed with new production.

AZ Jeff covered the old Garand pretty well.

The FN49 is a cool old military rifle, but can be a bit delicate. I understand this was one of the factors that led to its demise as a military offering. The other was the fact that it was a precision instrument that cost. I've shot a few in 8mm and theyweren't bad rifles, but weren't as accurate or nearly as rugged as the Garand in my opinion.

November 14, 2003, 09:08 PM
RE the M1....

AZ Jeff is right on @ 100%.....

Re "M1 thumb" specifically..... I tend to believe that most cases of "M1 thumb" happen to guys who pick up the rifle and start yanking on things without asking the proper method or listening when told. Occasionally you'll hear of some "experienced" M1 shooter getting careless and shedding blood in the M1's chamber... The operative word there was "careless". :D Holds true for virtually any mechanical device.

We have a local CMP club where most of us shoot Garands every month in short course matches. We get newbies in here all the time, loan them an M1 and let them shoot a 50 round match. We set them down on the line and give them a 5 minute familiarization with the rifle and turn them loose. Showing them how to properly operate the action and load it goes a long way to keeping their digits un-bloodied. Once a person is taught properly, and they keep shooting an M1, the correct operation becomes second nature....

I have yet to hear of one of our newbies getting bit.....

At one time 3 + years ago I wuz one of those newbies to our club..... The club members showed me the right way to handle the beast and to this day, several Garand deliveries by BWT and quite a few thousands of rounds out the tube later, (knock on wood) I've never been bitten.

Best to all,

Garands forever.... gotta' love 'em

Beetle Bailey
November 14, 2003, 10:18 PM

i was thinking of this:

sorry for the confusion, I wasn't referring to your post. I said "I believe it's called a BM 59" because I couldn't remember for sure what the Italian Garand was called, not because I was trying to correct you regarding the FN 49. I think has one for sale, but right now the website is closed, so I can't check.

November 14, 2003, 10:33 PM
Case for the 7400 or garand gets stronger...

I figured the semi BAR's and 1919-types prohibitively expensive, but thought I'd includ ethem in my brainstorming.


cracked butt
November 14, 2003, 10:37 PM
We have a local CMP club where most of us shoot Garands every month in short course matches. We get newbies in here all the time, loan them an M1 and let them shoot a 50 round match. We set them down on the line and give them a 5 minute familiarization with the rifle and turn them loose. Showing them how to properly operate the action and load it goes a long way to keeping their digits un-bloodied. Once a person is taught properly, and they keep shooting an M1, the correct operation becomes second nature....

When I first shot an M1 it was at such a match. I wasn't even warned about the M1 thumb, was just shown a clip and was told to push it into the rifle with my thumb while keeping my hand in front of the oprod. With no practice at loading a clip, I found out amazingly quick how easy it is to load during the first rapid fire phase.

The M1 is a no brainer.:cool:

November 14, 2003, 10:48 PM
My 7400 Carbine Synthetic in .30-06 has functioned flawlessly thus far - with factory 4-rd. magazines.
The plastic jobs just aren't up to snuff, even though they looked good in pictures.
This rifle is pretty accurate for a short bbl. carbine in a potent caliber.
I like it.

The BAR is a superb rifle, but it, too, has the 4-rd. limit in .30-06.
Mine is in 7mm Rem.Mag.
No failures of any kind yet. Nice gun.

If magazine capacity and detachability is more of the top priority, a DSA Carbine in .308 might be a better choice.
You won't be giving up much in the power dept., but, you'll gain capacity and accessory availability, especially the magazines.

For a multi-purpose rifle, the DSA Carbine would be hard to beat...UNLESS you go for an AR10!!!
I did.

The magazines are a tad more expensive, but, I think the AR10 provides and even more versatile platform than the FAL style.
I like the looks a bit better, too.

Of those two military style platforms, you'd have to be willing to switch from .30-06 to .308.
Ammo cost could be a positive factor in favor of the .308.

Good Luck!

November 15, 2003, 02:55 AM
What is this "Hakim Hand" I hear speak of? :uhoh:

November 15, 2003, 09:02 AM
I'd advise going with a Garand. $500 tops from the CMP. Another $500 into it & it'll be a decent match rifle. But out of the box it should give 3" to 4" groups on the outside, but possibly closer to 2" or perhaps even less. Just depends on the particular rifle. It's reliable to a fault. It's manual of arms is very simple & easy ot learn. Most 6th graders can learn to field strip one in no time. Parts are all over the place & except for something major (like an op rod bending, barrel replacement or receiver issues) you cna make most repairs yourself with the barest minimum of tools. As long as the receiver & barrel are in good shape, you can replace anything yourself. & most problems with the Garand can be solved by replacing an out of spec part with an in-spec part. It's capacity is 8 rounds & it uses a clip instead of a detachable magazine. Most people find this objectionable, but I think they overlook the benefits.

When a Garand is empty the bolt locks back & the empty clip is ejected. You then grab a loaded clip & insert. The bolt releases itself & you're back to shooting.

With a detachable magazine fed rifle when it's empty the bolt locks back. You then have to remove the empty mag. Then you have to insert a loaded mag. Then after you manually release the bolt you can start shooting again.

The Garand feeding system is simpler as far as reloads go. & believe it or not someone who has practiced a bit can keep up with the aimed rate of fire of any detachable magazine fed rifle in a similar caliber.

So I never really saw any disadvantage to the Garand's en bloc clip feeding system.

Now there's a company called Smith Enterprises which used to make mag conversions for .308 & 7.62x51 Garands. He'd modify the floorplate & receiver so it'd accept M14 mags. For the hell of it I asked him if he did the same for '06 Garands. He told me he didn't because there were no available 10 rounds mags in .30-06. I mentioned the B.A.R. mags & he told me that the B.A.R. mags feed in a straight line, while the Garand likes to feed left to right from the mag, so they wouldn't work. However if you have the cash & can talk him or another gunsmith into it you could have them fabricate a .30-06 mag & modify the Garand to accept it. But count on a lot of cash for that project, as designing things from scratch can get pricey.
Another consideration is that untill the AWB expires you'd be forking over a lot of cash to get a gunsmith to increase the garands capacity by 2 rounds.
But by all means if you do that particular project let me know how it turns out & who did the work. I love hearing about uncommon solutions to non-existent problems. :p

The only real drawbacks a Garand has is commercial hunting ammo, especially 180+ grain bullets could damage the op rod; in a tidal wave or under attack from a firehouse it's possible that the grease will wash away from the underside of the barrel & lock up the op rod; & the damned thing just won't float.

& you can buy adjustable gas systems that will let you use heavier than standard ammo or ammo that uses slower burning powders. But as is stick to mil-surp '06 with bullets from 147 to 178 grains, or handloads with medium burning powders (IMR 4895 & 4064 are great) with the same range of bullet weights.

So if you're dead set on the '06 I'd recommend the Garand.

& speaking of the BM59...

Italy was given a bunch of Garands after WW2. Beretta started fooling around with the design & in 1959 Italy adopted the BM59. Beretta had made Garands for the Italian army but changed a few things in the BM59. Namely they switched to 7.62x51; shortened the barrel & gas system; got rid of the front handguard & shortened the rear handguard; added folding grenade launcher sights that closed the gas system upon opening; made detachable 20 round magazines for it; made it select fire; & made some rather interesting variants. There were about 30+ parts that interchanged between Garand & BM59's, & the rest were either modified Garand parts or newly fabricated parts. They're interesting little rifles. Back in the early 80's I drooled almost daily over The Itali-Alpine model being marketed by Springfield. It was a semi-auto only BM59 in 7.62x51 that had a folding stock & attached bipod. Wish I'd have picked one up. Then again a company is selling BM59 folding stocks & I do believe that it'll work on a Garand with little or no modifications. Might have to check into that further.
In any event the BM59 was a Garand variant & a good one, but it was chambered for 7.62x51 & therefore doesn't meet the '06 requirement. Not to mention it looks like one of those dangerous assault weapons. & while you're in the PRM they're verbotten.

But other choices are kinda slim, mainly cause of the 10 round mag requirement. Aside from the semi-auto B.A.R. or the semi-auto 1917 &/or 1919 Brownings, all the other semi-auto '06's I can think of have less than 10 round mags.

However you cna have the semi-auto B.A.R. trimmed down to around 16 pounds or so. Colt made a B.A.R. for the civilian & police market called the Monitor & it was just a slightly shortened slightly lightened B.A.R. It wouldn't take much to get a gunsmith to hook that up for ya.

& the semi-auto 1917 &/or 1919 has belts, so up to 100 rounds can be loaded & shot without stopping to load fresh belts. As for parts availability that shouldn't be a problem, as the only parts they changed were the trigger/sear/disconnector & the right side plate. All other parts should be interchangable with the standard 1917/1919. If it worries you pick up some spare trigger parts if you buy the thing. Same thing applies to the semi-auto B.A.R. about parts availability.

Both the semi-auto B.A.R. & the 1917/1919 are kinda pricey (for me at least) but between $1500 & $2000 should get you one. I have no direct experience with either but the design isn't overly complex from what I've been told & they should be fairly easy to repair as long as you have the spare parts on hand.

The Saiga AK based '06's do look interesting. The AK system is legendary for reliability. Only thing I'd be curious about is what kind of accuracy it gives, cause AK's aren't known as tack drivers. Still it does look like an interesting idea.

The commercial rifles (Remington 7400 & Browning BAR) have a good reputation from what I've been told (again, no direct experience) & would be good choices for hunting rifles.

But I would recommened the Garand in '06 above all others. I'm biased I admit; but I think a Garand would serve damn near any need you'd have for a rifle.

November 15, 2003, 11:25 AM
publicola wrote:

The Garand feeding system is simpler as far as reloads go. & believe it or not someone who has practiced a bit can keep up with the aimed rate of fire of any detachable magazine fed rifle in a similar caliber. So I never really saw any disadvantage to the Garand's en bloc clip feeding system.

Let's all give a great big AMEN to that..... :D

Once you have it figured out, the M1 loads VERY fast. No detachable mag fed rifle can match it.


Garands forever

Matt G
November 15, 2003, 12:15 PM
Unless you reload before emptying said detatchable magazine. :)

Bill Hook
November 15, 2003, 12:19 PM
Empire's BM59 is priced at $1850, so that makes these variants a bit pricey.

November 15, 2003, 12:36 PM
matt wrote:

Unless you reload before emptying said detatchable magazine.

Makes no difference..... the M1 still requires far fewer hand movements to be back on trigger and on target.

Try it... you'll see. I have.. many times. ;)

Best to all,

Tim Wilson
November 15, 2003, 03:17 PM
cpileri writes: 1. M1 Garand: $600-1000+, 4+ reliability,
good: easy to use w/ self-regulating gas device,
good lots of parts,
bad 'garand thumb',
bad 'ping' as it ejects clips,
need to keep striaght what to grease and what to leave dry,
8 rd capacity.


Scarecrow: That’s the trouble; I can’t make up my mind. I haven’t got a brain.

Dorothy: Well, how can you talk if you haven’t got a brain?

Scarecrow: I don’t know. But some people without brains do an awful lot of talking.

Methinks cipleri must be the scarecrow when it comes to garands. They do NOT have a self-adjusting gas device, nor have I ever heard of one.

November 15, 2003, 05:25 PM
I used to be a member of a private gun club that opened the ranges to the public before and during deer season. As part of my "club service" I'd act as range safety officer for a couple of days during this time, making sure that once-a-year shooters didn't do anything dumb from a safety standpoint, like monkey with their rifles while people were downrange hanging targets.

During the course of all this, I got to see a LOT of guns come through the range. Without making this story too long, the commercial "civilian" semi-autos that gave the most problems were, without a doubt, Remingtons. Some years, it seems that every third or fourth rifle was a "jammamatic." Sometimes they locked up with a live round "almost" chambered, and were darned near impossible to open. Don't think that ALL of them are junk - most worked ok, but I still I think that Remington put out an awful lot of "Monday morning" and "Friday afternoon" rifles.

The few Winchester 100s I saw worked well - the guys who had these old rifles really liked them, and lamented Winchester's discontinuation of this model.

Browning semi-autos always seemed to work well, so if I was looking for a "civilian" type semi auto, that's what I'd get.

For military rifles in .30/06, Garands were the most common. The ones I saw were less reliable than the Brownings, but then, they were a LOT older and probably included parts of questionable pedigree. A good Garand ought to work well, even under adverse conditions.

November 16, 2003, 07:40 PM
Too bad those fn 49's are not C&R!

Both of the 8mm Egyptian-contract FN-49's I've owned came through just fine on my C&R FFL. Same holds true for the Luxembourg-contract .30-06 FN-49's.

Yup, the BM-59, like my Nigerian variant, are 7.62x51/.308 Win rifles, based on the M1 Garand's receiver and gas system, with a few Italian-designed twists. The Italians took the leftover Winchester Garand tooling we gave them after WWII, and came up with their own version of the M14 several years before Uncle Sam's Springfield Armory could get our version out the door. It could probably be chambered in .30-06, but wouldn't be magazine-fed, then. BTW, anybody price good BM-59 mags lately? I paid @$80.00 for each of mine. :what:

As for sporting, gas-operated .30-06 autoloaders, I'm partial to the Belgian-made Browning BAR. It almost looks like H&K tried to copy it, but fell on their faces in the aesthetics department. Here's my 1969-vintage BAR, in French Walnut:

November 16, 2003, 07:58 PM
The magazines are a tad more expensive,

FAL mags cost between $6 and $15 dollars. AR-10 mags are between $50 and $90 dollars.

I guess that is a "tad" more expensive. :D

November 20, 2003, 04:13 AM
That's a SWEET little BAR you have there Gewehr98. That's a keeper.

I used to drool over those back then but never seemed to scrape together enough money. I ended up with a Remington 742 in .308 instead.

November 20, 2003, 10:25 PM
But when a friend wanted to buy a newer one in a belted magnum caliber, who was I to say "no" to his price of $400? :D

November 20, 2003, 11:32 PM

That's a great looking BAR. Has it been completely reliable? I have toyed back and forth with getting a BAR. How do the Belgian models compare to the current Japan models?

Are BARs 100% reliable?


November 20, 2003, 11:50 PM

I'll give you $424.99 for it.


November 21, 2003, 09:01 AM
What about Benelli's ARGO rifle? Anyone have any experience with it? :confused:

November 21, 2003, 02:34 PM
If you are stuck on 30-06, you cant do any better than a Garand or one of the variants, I live mine, very durable.

I just got a new 7400 carbine in 30-06, piece of junk. I hear there are examples of working models buddies has worked so far with aoubt 10 rounds through it, but mine wont work no matter what I shoot through it. From all I've seen and read, you have about a 50/50 chance of getting a good one.

Before you rule 308 out, look in a reloading manual. Until you get into heavy bullets like 180 and 200 grain, the 308 has the same velocity as 30-06.

Take a look at an FAL or Saiga 308....

November 21, 2003, 03:58 PM
I'll give you $424.99 for it.

It was one of the biggest haggling points in my divorce. My ex-wife had taken a shine to it, proclaiming it "hers" after shooting it the first time. She liked the lack of recoil and the accuracy of 168gr MatchKings at the 300 yard steel gong.

Needless to say, I forfeited an IPSC-prepped 1911A1 and a Savage Model 340 boltgun in .30-30 just to keep that BAR.

As for reliability, the only negative I know about the BAR is that it heats up rather quickly after four rounds, and the chambers are cut to the tight side of the SAAMI specs. I have to full-length resize brass if I want to guarantee perfect functioning with my .30-06 loads in that rifle - almost to the point of getting small-base dies. Commercial domestic ammo is fine, the gun loves Winchester Silvertips. And that heavenly trigger - liability lawyers must not have been a big concern in Belgium in 1969... :D

You have to be careful about Belgium vs. Japan vs. Belgium with these guns. I think Browning lost business when the guns were made in Japan, so they went back to Belgian manufacture. But it isn't what you think - look at the barrel rollmarks, it will say "Made in Belgium, assembled in Portugal" for the later-model BARs. The earliest ones will simply state "Made in Belgium". Kind of like Winchester's return to the pre-'64 Model 70 action, but they never really went back to the original standard.

November 21, 2003, 05:47 PM
Gave up the wife and kept the Belgium BAR.
I admire a man who has his priorities set straight. ;)

November 22, 2003, 08:23 PM
I was wondering the exact same things about the same rifles (7400 and BAR)!! But I dont know anyone who owns one.

I have a older Rem. Woodsmaster 740 in 30-06. I love the gun. Its a good stomping gun. The only problem I ever had with it was a loose barrel, but I tightened the 'Ring" and it went back to normal. You have to think that they only made the 740 between 1955 and 1959 (7400's are newer but look identical on the outside),
I will forewarn you, its not exactly a tack driver, but I have taken deer WAAAY out there with it. Easy 300 yard shot with a 4X scope is no problem with a decent tree for a prop.

November 22, 2003, 09:40 PM
I am suprised that this topic generated so much interest!
All great info.
I am still torn, and now must consider the ppossibility of not being able to choose between a Garand and some .308.

Maybe a new 'best 308' topic? I know Fred (you know him, THE Fred) likes the M1A.

Maybe I'll have to work on getting both.
My wish list just keeps growing...

November 22, 2003, 10:04 PM
Garand in .30-06 is great and affordable. Only GI equivalent ammo*. Lots if cheap ammo in clips around right now.

Garand in .308 is great and still affordable. Still have to watch ammo pressures.

M1A in .308 is great but expensive. Mags are getting very pricey.

FAL in .308 is affordable, but be careful of what it is and who assembled it. Be prepared to peak & tweat it at first. Cheapest magazines. Adjustable gas assembly so you can shoot anything in it.

HK91 in .308 is good but EXPENSIVE but don't plan on reloading.

CETME in .308... fauggedaboudit

*There are some mods out there to adjust the operating pressure so commercial ammo can be used. Some like them, some don't. I know one guy who swears by his.
Also it can be modified so you can lock the bolt open and top off a magazine.

just my tuppence. YMMV

November 22, 2003, 10:19 PM
Maybe a new 'best 308' topic? I know Fred (you know him, THE Fred) likes the M1A.

I peed in Fred's Wheaties once, via email. His "rifleman" diatribe hit a nerve with me, something about AK owners not being useful in a SHTF scenario. Pi$$ed him off so much he had to make a rebuttal on his Shotgun News pages. It wasn't anything personal, considering I own a M14NM, BM-59, 700PSS, and soon a CETME (for non-reloadable or last-ever-loaded brass). But his battlefield tactics, or lack thereof, left something to be desired. it made me wonder if he'd just completely forgotten about intermediate-cartridge weapons in the history of modern warfare.

Don't forget, there is a .308 BAR out there, too, they even sell it with an alloy receiver and black synthetic stock, I think it's called the BAR Lightweight Stalker...


November 22, 2003, 10:41 PM
I like Fred and a lot of what he says has merit.

But, while that hid behind the trees and pick them off one by one deal worked just fine 225 yars ago, there's more to it than that in todays world.

November 24, 2003, 10:56 AM
The HK is what I'd like to call "Browning BAR + 40% markup" :D

If you want to try a Garand thumb... try loading a Garand with your lefthand like I do!!:what:

I've seen a guy who was just begging to get a Garand Hand.. He holds the entire clip with the palm of the hand, and tries to shove it in before the breech closes.. He said he's ripped his hand open before.. someone, I find that easy to believe..

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