7mm Rem. Mag as a First Rifle Calibre?


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GreatCanada22
March 10, 2011, 12:41 AM
Hi Everyone,
I am 15 years old, and my gun is selected and ready to be bought; a Browning XBolt Hunter. It will be used to hunt moose in northwestern Ontario. I have looked at some different calibres, but i am really interested in the 7mm Rem. Mag as a calibre. My question is, is it a good starting gun calibre to use, or will it make me develop a flinch? i am 6'3" and 230 pounds, and shoot quite often. Any questions or answers would be very appreciated.

Josh

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txhoghunter
March 10, 2011, 12:49 AM
I would say that it is too much for a first rifle and a 15 y/o, but it is right on as far as what you need to down a moose.

How often do you shoot, and what other calibers do you shoot?

nathan
March 10, 2011, 12:55 AM
Id say. go for it. If you are physically that big, the recoil is moot. Im 5 ft 8 in and 7mm RM is not too bad. Its like a souped up .3006. Besides its more flat shooting and reaches yonder .

GreatCanada22
March 10, 2011, 12:57 AM
Yes, i have heard others also say that it is too much as well, while others say it is fine. I shoot my father's 30-06 without a problem at the range, and every fall I travel to Saskatchewan and shoot geese with a 12 gauge Browning pump. Yes, i know that you just have to point a shotgun, and do not have to be very accurate, but i still do not have any trouble going through 15-20 shells of 3 inch magnum a day for a week. What are your opinions then, on a suitable first rifle?

nathan
March 10, 2011, 01:05 AM
Browning A Bolt is a really nice brand which even me will only dream to own one. Again, go for it. Technique is, dont condition your mind or anticipate the boom sound. Squeeze the trigger slowly and not jerk. Just concentrate on the target and hold rifle steady. Wear ear plugs an ear muff to have adequate protection and you will be fine. Now magnum s are not cheap ammo unless you are into reloading.

FC
March 10, 2011, 01:07 AM
I would say to stick with a 30 06 if your Father already owns one, common ammunition is great and it will be cheaper to shoot unless you are reloading.

pikid89
March 10, 2011, 01:09 AM
get the rifle that YOU want...however, would suggest that you get whatever rifle you want in .30-06, as that is plenty of gun for 99% of North American game, and you will have ammo commonality with your father, (not a bad plan logistically, or economically)

GreatCanada22
March 10, 2011, 01:13 AM
Yes, many people told me about the high price of ammo, and then i looked into some on Cabelas. I saw it was about 5-7 dollars more a box for magnum calibres than it was non. thats about 25 cents more a shot.. Is it worth it?

Bullnettles
March 10, 2011, 01:14 AM
If you already shoot, get want you want. I would regret it if I wanted something bigger and could handle, and didn't. Now, if you think recoil would be a problem for accuracy, that's a whole other subject.

GreatCanada22
March 10, 2011, 01:25 AM
Thank you for all the great input everyone. Bullnettles, in your opinion, is the 7mm Rem Mag powerful enough to effect me, who is used to shooting a 30-06?

christcorp
March 10, 2011, 01:26 AM
You'll find that 7mm remington magnum is just as available as 30-06 and 30-30. It's probably the #1 available magnum cartridge. It's everywhere. Also; as you noticed, it's not that much more money that 30-06 ammo.

The biggest advantage to the 7mm remington magnum is flatter and further distance shooting. Is that flatter and further distance "Significant"??? That's up to what you are shooting. For me, I have found the 300 yard marker to be the break even point. Many people say the 30-06 can shoot quite fine beyond 300 yards. Yes it can. But the 7mm magnum past 300 yards really starts to outshine the 30-06 with accuracy. So, if you plan on shooting past 300 yards; "We do here in Wyoming against elk, deer, antelope, sheep, etc..."; then I'd go with the 7mm magnum. If your shots are all going to be within the 300 yard range, I'd go with the 30-06. Why? Because it's an easier/softer gun to shoot and has many more different weight bullets/ammo to choose from. But here in Wyoming, if I'm going for an antelope, sheep, mountain lion, etc... around the 400 yard mark; I definitely want my 7mm magnum over my 30-06. Actually; I pretty much use my 7mm remington magnum for all my hunting that uses a rifle.

GreatCanada22
March 10, 2011, 01:33 AM
Thank you for that very knowledgable reply christcorp. Where i hunt in ontario, shots can range from 75 yards to +350. On two occasions with my dad, we shot 2 moose. One was a bull, at 80 yards. The next winter, a bull at 325 yards. With these numbers in mind, is the 7mm outclassed? That 30-06 keeps popping up in every conversation i have with my family and hunting friends. Which calibre is suited to my hunting needs?

nathan
March 10, 2011, 01:37 AM
If you want more power to go through big game, .300 Win Mag is there . NOw dont go to the RUMs and .338s , that be another category to discuss...

Lloyd Smale
March 10, 2011, 06:10 AM
Slap the word magnum onto a round and everyone runs and hides. To me the 7mag doesnt recoil anymore in a 24 inch gun then a 06 does in a 22. Most 7mags are made with a bit heavier coutoured barrels too and that adds weight that takes away from recoil. I was shooting my rem 7mag the other day along side my model 7 308 and thought the 308 was comming back more. I like the 7mag. Its shoots as flat as a 300 mag, granted with lighter bullets, and recoils more like an 06. Is it better then an o6. Well i wouldnt be without either. My o6s are for the most part lighter and easier to carry around all day and theres probalby nothing more versitile. But when doing crop damage shooting when shots are at 300 plus yards as a norm id take the 7mag hands down.

Big Bad Bob
March 10, 2011, 07:06 AM
A 15 YEAR OLD WHO IS 6'3, 230lbs, :what: FORGET HUNTIN, PLAY FOOTBALL!


All kidding aside, 7mm mag maybe a little much for a first rifle, however I knew a 12 year old who could handle one. But there is difference in handling something and enjoying using it. I would say .300WSM or 30/06 would be better for recoil management and the type of game you want to hunt.

True Grit
March 10, 2011, 08:09 AM
Find someone thats has one and shoot it first. There a bit of a rifle so I would try one out first. Man I was hunting with my dad with an old Mauser 98 when I was 10. Damn thing kicked harder back then for some reason =]

snake284
March 10, 2011, 08:27 AM
I would normally agree that it's too much for a first rifle not only for a 15 year old, but for anyone. I would normally say get a 7x57 Mauser, a .270 Win., a .308 Winchester, or maybe even a 30-06. But if you're 6'3" and 230 pounds it's not going to kick you around and especially if you shoot a lot. It may take you some getting used to but for what you want it for there's not much better. A 7 mag is a wonderful caliber. One alternative though if you hand load, is a .280 Rem. Ackley Improved. It has less recoil and blast effect, but is almost the equal of its big brother the 7 mag. .in case you're not familiar, a .280 is a 7mm. A 7mag and a .280 both shoot a .284 Caliber bullet. A 7 mag will out do a .280 AI about 50-100 FPS depending on bullet weight. That's not enough difference to worry about when hunting. Even if you don't hand load, the beauty of an Ackley Improvement is you can shoot regular factory .280 rounds in it too because they will head space on the shoulder-neck juncture just fine. But when you shoot it, it will fire form the brass to the Ackley Improved case dimensions.

cal74
March 10, 2011, 09:06 AM
If you're 6 feet and 200+ lbs I wouldn't worry about it. I'm 6'2" 190 lbs and don't think my 7mm mag kicks any worse than my 30-06.

Wouldn't want to shoot either one all day at the bench, but neither are bad.


Personally I'd look at another platform though. Might take a look at a Ruger or maybe a Remington XCR. Ultimately get what fits you the best.

Factor in money for a decent scope and don't be afraid to look at the used market, especially Leupolds which have a great warranty if ever needed.



Good Luck

BoilerUP
March 10, 2011, 09:49 AM
Its nothing a quality recoil pad or slip-on Limbsaver couldn't fix.

But then again, I'm 5'11" and 175lb and a recoil sissy...a stout 180gr 30-06 load doesn't bother me the least in the woods but I wouldn't want to send too many rounds in a single sitting while practicing with it.

christcorp
March 10, 2011, 10:15 AM
If your dad already has a 30-06, then get the 7mm magnum. You can always "Borrow" the 30-06 if you know for a fact that you're going into dense woods where the shots won't need a 7mm magnum. That's the good thing about parents; you can borrow things. Why have 2 identical caliber guns/

Krusty783
March 10, 2011, 10:59 AM
Thank you for that very knowledgable reply christcorp. Where i hunt in ontario, shots can range from 75 yards to +350. On two occasions with my dad, we shot 2 moose. One was a bull, at 80 yards. The next winter, a bull at 325 yards. With these numbers in mind, is the 7mm outclassed? That 30-06 keeps popping up in every conversation i have with my family and hunting friends. Which calibre is suited to my hunting needs?

I have a 7mm and it's a bit too much for me (5'-8", 195). But, a couple of the reasons I bought it were:
a) I can use it on anything in NA-still hoping to find an elk in Missouri one day.
b) It shoots very flat and retains a lot of energy at long range.
c) I avoided a .30-06 for the same reason that I'll never buy an Accord; I didn't want to follow the herd.

Here's a ballistics chart from Hornady:http://www.hornady.com/assets/files/ballistics/metric-ballistics-chart-2010.pdf

7mm RM and .30-06 loads are on the 3rd page. You can directly compare the bullet drop and energy retention at range between similar bullet weights. If you zero the rifle at 200m, both cartridges have drops within 6 cm or so out to 400m, but the 7mm has about 10% more energy than the 06.

Basically, if you zero either caliber at 200m, you can aim at the boiler room of a moose within 350-400m and drop it.

If you get a 7mm, you and your dad can switch guns, or you can borrow his if you want. But, whomever forgets to pack their ammo will have a very boring hunting trip.

KzoneAL
March 10, 2011, 11:38 AM
Buy it..! U will have no problem.Under huntin conditions u won't hardly know the gun went off.U have time behind the trigger of a 12 shootin waterfowl so your no stranger to recoil.Keep the gun/scope weight arond 8-9lbs you'll do just fine. Good luck with ur first rifle may u shoot it well and have many kills with it.

GreatCanada22
March 10, 2011, 06:32 PM
So, to have a summary of this page, a 7mm will do me fine, and will do fine for the hunting i will be doing as well, but the 30-06 will also be a great caliber?

joed
March 10, 2011, 06:36 PM
I had a 7mm RM in a model 70. Don't know where anyone got the idea that this cartridge has no more recoil then a .30-06 but mine kicked like a mule with 150 gr bullets. I ended up selling this gun and keeping a Remington 700 Classic in .300 H&H Mag. I swear this one kicks less then the 7mm RM and is more versatile.

Motega
March 10, 2011, 08:04 PM
I just read barrel life on a 7mm mag is about 800 rounds. That just plain sucks, especially for a kid looking for a life-long hunting rifle. A new barrel will be slightly different even on the same action... so as soon as you can say you really "know" that rifle it'll be time to basically start all over again.
If you are relying on the few extra yards a 7mm shoots flat for, my advice would be to work on becoming a better hunter and able to get closer to game.
Also consider the resale value if you ever want to sell the rifle. A .30-06 has a much wider market than a 7mm. There are guys that won't even consider buying a 7mm mag BECAUSE of the short barrel life and because it is completely unnecessary on North American game.
I wouldn't give even a great deal a second look- you might be able to GIVE me one, but I wouldn't offer you 1/10th of what it is probably worth.
No matter where you go you can find ammo for a .30-06 and you can find a better selection of bullets as well.
As far as kick goes, give me a break please... 100 pound girls I shoot with can shoulder our .300 mags, Weatherbys, etc. without complaint.
But WHY is the question? Believe me, a .30-06 will kill anything under 100 yards which is where you should be anyway.

BoilerUP
March 10, 2011, 08:12 PM
How long will it take a hunter to "shoot out" a barrel though, even one that is a teenager?

Cranky CJ
March 10, 2011, 11:35 PM
GreatCanada; a 7mag is a very sound choice. My 50 yr old brother started with one when he was your age and uses it every year up to and including this past year. Go for it. The X Bolt is also a very fine choice, I have an A bolt in 300WSM.

If you are into researching ballistics, look at all the mag calibers, 270WSM, 7mag and 7WSM, and 300mag and 300WSM. Study the ballistics and choose the one you think suits you the best. Ballistic calculators can be found online.

So far your choice, X bolt in 7mag would be a great choice, IMO. I just suggest you do a little more study then get the gun that you really want, not the one somebody else tells you to get. In the end, you would get it, but only several years later.

JDMorris
March 10, 2011, 11:46 PM
I'm 14, 5-10" and 157 lbs, I guarantee size doesn't help alot when it comes to accurate rifle shooting, but assuming you aren't as experienced with a rifle, don't take it personally the blast from that cannon of a rifle will cause you to forget about squeezing the trigger, and flinch and jerk the trigger and pull the rifle off target..
I'd start with a .223, I started with a .308 and found flinch was slightly difficult to get over, now I have zero flinch or little if any, usually only with pistols, which I don't shoot nearly as often as the .308 and .223 rifles that are more fun to shoot to me..
But I'd stay away from the magnums until you get all the fundamentals down, maybe a 7-08, .260 or 6.5x55 swede would be a better choice for a flat shooting caliber..
Now I'll admit you might be able to handle the recoil a bit better but it will make you stop shooting first because you'll be shaking a bit and flinching like heck..
Trust me... I was a trap shooter, used to pumping through 12 guage nitro loads that kicked like buckshot in doubles and sitting on a bench it's alot harder to put 3 shots in one hole than to shoot a clay with a scattergun.

wsm
March 10, 2011, 11:50 PM
GreatCanada22.

Your choice of both rifle and round are excellent. Don't worry about barrel burn-out. Unless you do an awful lot of paper punching you will never burn one out. But if you do burn one out you will find that it is harder to find someone to change the barrel on the Browning that on a Remington 700 or a Winchester Model 70. At your size and weight you won't have any flinch problems. Good hunting.:):)

JDMorris
March 10, 2011, 11:56 PM
Size and weight has little to do with flinching, it doesn't matter how big you are, most flinching is related to muzzle blast.

christcorp
March 11, 2011, 02:57 AM
I just read barrel life on a 7mm mag is about 800 rounds. That just plain sucks, especially for a kid looking for a life-long hunting rifle. A new barrel will be slightly different even on the same action... so as soon as you can say you really "know" that rifle it'll be time to basically start all over again.
If you are relying on the few extra yards a 7mm shoots flat for, my advice would be to work on becoming a better hunter and able to get closer to game.
Also consider the resale value if you ever want to sell the rifle. A .30-06 has a much wider market than a 7mm. There are guys that won't even consider buying a 7mm mag BECAUSE of the short barrel life and because it is completely unnecessary on North American game.
I wouldn't give even a great deal a second look- you might be able to GIVE me one, but I wouldn't offer you 1/10th of what it is probably worth.
No matter where you go you can find ammo for a .30-06 and you can find a better selection of bullets as well.
As far as kick goes, give me a break please... 100 pound girls I shoot with can shoulder our .300 mags, Weatherbys, etc. without complaint.
But WHY is the question? Believe me, a .30-06 will kill anything under 100 yards which is where you should be anyway.
Motega; I don't know where you "Just Read" this information, but that is so wrong it's pathetic. First; every manufacturer of rifles is different. It's not possible to say that a particular CALIBER BARREL will last a certain number of rounds. That's totally ridiculous. And for what it's worth; I've had my Savage 110E 7mm Remington Magnum for just over 20 years now. I don't shoot it that often except right before hunting season to sight in and have a little fun; but at the BARE MINIMUM; I shoot at least 100 rounds a year. So at the very least, I have about 2000 rounds through it. And the barrel isn't anywhere near "Worn Out". What you read is simply wrong.

Which obviously makes the rest of you analysis (Based on what you read); also wrong. The whole resale issue (Because the barrel is worn out) is simply untrue. And what do you mean by the 30-06 will kill anything under 100 yards, "WHICH IS WHERE YOU SHOULD BE ANYWAY". Do you even hunt??? If you do, it must be the brush of New Jersey or some other place similar in terrain. I promise you; if you come out to Wyoming, Colorado, Montana, Idaho, the rest of the Rockies or even the plains of the dakotas and such; you'd think God himself came down and blessed you if you can get within 100 yards of most animals. Don't get me wrong; we definitely try it. Especially in bow season. But if you're going rifle hunting for our game out here, or similar places, getting under 100 yards as the place we're suppose to be at; is simply naive. You've obviously never hunted real mountains or plains.

snake284
March 11, 2011, 03:08 AM
Man 800 rounds takes a long time in a rifle used primarily for hunting. And I would say even a 7mag if you handload it sensibly will last more than that. I would think if you didn't shoot too many hot strings and let the barrel cool between groups it may surprise you. I wouldn't be surprised if one would last a couple of thousand rounds. But even 800 rounds will take a lot longer than you think. That could possibly take you 20 years. Lets face it, you're not going to sit at a bench too long with a 7 mag. You might take a hunting rifle to the range two-three times a year and shoot it 20 times each trip. And that might be a lot. I've had a .270 for nearly 45 years and the barrel isn't gone yet, and I've shot it probably more than most people would have because I've done a lot of handload development. I did recently remove a bunch of copper from the bore that I had neglected through the years and it helped my accuracy. But for a 7 mag to go south in 8 years would take a lot of abusive shooting.

KzoneAL
March 11, 2011, 12:59 PM
[QUOTE][So, to have a summary of this page, a 7mm will do me fine, and will do fine for the hunting i will be doing as well, but the 30-06 will also be a great caliber? /QUOTE]

YES..!

wsm
March 11, 2011, 04:04 PM
JD; he has 5 inches in height on you and 73 pounds in weight. That DOES make a difference. Why do you think that the Lead Sled is so effective? Weight!

nastynatesfish
March 12, 2011, 12:27 AM
first. the 7 mag was my first big rifle and im about the same size. its not overkill one bit. not sure about up north but here in az the 7mag rem core locks are about 27 a box so the price is not any different. second ive got wayyyy more than 800 rounds through the two 7s that ive owned. ive had my remmy that i built since august of last year and am pushing 1000 rounds now. im finally having brass come apart at the belt from to many reloads. i went to the range yesterday and put 65 rounds through it with 162gr amaxs running at 3100fps, fyi. its a great all around round. recoil is not bad unless you reload and load hot. itll do anything you want it to do. good luck

Liberty1776
March 12, 2011, 12:38 AM
GC22 - believe me, at your size you won't notice any difference between the rifle in 7mm Remington mag, or 30-06. I have and shoot both frequently. I love my 7mm Mag - it's a great round and in the heavier bullet ranges will work great for moose.

LoonWulf
March 12, 2011, 07:41 AM
I also think the 7mm is a good choice, still the one i go for mostly. Recoil isnt oppressive by any means, power is more then adequate, and trajectory is flatter then anything in its recoil range. I shot over 1k rounds from my first 7mm barrel before changing it to 300 (just cause i wanted something different), and i had no loss in accuracy. My new 7mm is about 300rnds in and i think im sticking with 168grn bergers powered by retumbo.

Old Shooter
March 12, 2011, 07:53 AM
Buy the 7mm you are interested in and give it a try. If it turns out you like your fathers 30-06 better, then trade your 7mm for an '06. Either one will do what you want to do with the correct choice of bullets.

cal74
March 12, 2011, 11:23 AM
Most 7mm mags or most any strictly big game rifles will last many generation on the original barrels.

Usually more harm comes to barrels by improper cleaning than shooting too much.


In this class of cartridges the stock fit makes all the difference in perceived felt recoil. I have a Winchester .243 that bothers me more to shoot than my Ruger 7mm mag.

I also have a .223 Handi Rifle with a youth stock that obviously doesn't kick enough to hurt, but with the short stock it does get tiresome to shoot it 15-20 times.


As for muzzle blast, personally I don't think the 7mm mags are that much worse than either of the '06's I have. I do have a .257 Weatherby and even with it's 26" barrel that thing really barks.

Art Eatman
March 12, 2011, 12:08 PM
Therre have been many good answers. Unfortunately, there also have been answers from some who failed to read that the OP is a BIG GUY, and has experience with the '06.

Enough.

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