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do .308 and .30-06 kick too much for you?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by SpeedAKL, Sep 18, 2008.


do .308 and .30-06 kick too much for your liking?

  1. Yes

    21 vote(s)
  2. No

    311 vote(s)
  3. .460 Weatherby, please!

    27 vote(s)
  1. SpeedAKL

    SpeedAKL Well-Known Member

    I've heard and read many shooters complain that .308 and .30-06 are too hard-kicking for a lot of shooters to handle properly, and that those shooters would be best served for the typical deer hunt with a smaller cartridge such as the 7mm-08 or .25-06 or .243. Others don't seem to mind and find them perfectly acceptable to shoot at the range or in the field.

    Around here, .30-06 is pretty much the default whitetail caliber. Take a visit to the local public range right before deer season kicks off, and it's a 10-gun .30-06 salute all day long. We can get some pretty decent-sized bucks around here, and since lots of hunting is either done in the national forest or in open fields, the long-range knockdown power of the all-around high-power cartridges are much appreciated (.270 is also very popular). Don't see too many .300 Win Mags - hunters in SW VA seem to as a whole draw the line at .30-06.

    Personally, I don't find either cartridge objectionable. If I ran 100 rounds through my .308 or my roommate's .30-06 I'd probly be sore the next day, but overall I find both cartridges are enjoyable to shoot.
  2. benzy2

    benzy2 Well-Known Member

    As a deer rifle no they aren't too much. As an all day blaster or anything but the absolute longest range target shooting, yes they are excessive.
  3. FlyinBryan

    FlyinBryan Well-Known Member

    i picked no, but i also would feel it the next day if i were to go through 100 rds in a 30 06 bolt action.

    a 308 ar type rifle is a pleasure to shoot, and a garand aint too bad for the 30 06.

    it really depends on the rifle a lot.
  4. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Well-Known Member

    The rifle stock shape, recoil pad, and rifle weight will have more to do with shooting comfort for me than caliber.

    I don't find either the .308 or .30-06 to be objectionable in a sporter weight rifle, and with a good stock a light weight rifle in either caliber is not too objectionable.
  5. SpeedAKL

    SpeedAKL Well-Known Member

    I've fired .308 in several bolt guns as well as an AR-10. The AR-10 was a pussycat, and none of the bolt guns were/are too bad. I've fired .30-06 in two bolt guns, my friend's Remmy is fine with standard loads, the other one (a Win M70) was a bit stout but then again the ammo was hot-loaded. Never had the pleasure of shooting a Garand.
  6. Jim Watson

    Jim Watson Well-Known Member

    For a few rounds sighting in and going hunting, they are ok.
    For target shooting, my .308 has a heavy barrel, all recesses filled with lead, and I wear a RAND shoulder pad. It is still about as much kick as I want to put up with for a hundred round F-class match.
    My plinking loads in my old .30-06 run from .30-30 down to .32-40 ballistics.
  7. Bitmap

    Bitmap Well-Known Member

    I put 600 rounds through a sporter weight .30-06 bolt gun in 4 days. No big deal.
  8. kcmarine

    kcmarine Well-Known Member

    Never fired a bolt gun in either caliber. I'm sorta a stick... but ever since I fired about 300 shells of 12 gauge in 1 day, nothing really measures up anymore. They don't kick too hard in semis, though.
  9. The Wiry Irishman

    The Wiry Irishman Well-Known Member

    I put a muzzle brake on my .308 (Short gas system FAL carbine, weighs ~8#) and now the only thing limiting how much I shoot it is my time and budget. The most I've done in one sitting is ~200-250 rounds, and still no soreness. It even has an all-aluminum para stock. Without the brake, I'd start getting sore after 120 or so.
  10. russcoh

    russcoh Well-Known Member

    Both 308 and 30-06 are relatively light calibers when used in a well configured rifle (at least when it comes to recoil). I've fired a low model savage 30-06 with a cheesy stock and a curved recoil pad, then a Remington 700, both factory, feels like a different rifle. The load you use really makes a difference, too. The best thing to do is try every rifle you can, see which feels best, and doesn't feel too hard kicking.
  11. Ben Shepherd

    Ben Shepherd Well-Known Member

    You needed a couple more options on the poll.

    I can shoot a couple hundred rounds of 308 out of a bolt action without trouble.

    30-06, on the other hand, usually wears me out in about 50 rounds.

    In semi-autos I can go 'til I run out of ammo with either caliber generally.
  12. jkingrph

    jkingrph Well-Known Member

    My old Win 70 Ftw with factory buttplate is a bear. A recoil pad, no wood removed tamed it. M-1 is a pussycat by comparison. I shoot some bit stuff, lightweight 45-70, 375H&H and 458 Win mag, and I still remember the beating that little Win. gave me 45 years ago.
  13. Chipperman

    Chipperman Well-Known Member

    I'm good with .308 and .30-06 for countless rounds. I've never fired the big magnums, but I suspect they'd be a little much for more than a couple of rounds.

    The biggest gun I've ever fired was a four bore rifle. I fired two rounds. Fun, but that was enough.
  14. jrfoxx

    jrfoxx Well-Known Member

    voted "no", but will clarify that I use a slip-on recoil pad on my model 70 in 30-06. It's not that it kicks to much without it, but is more comfortable with it, so for the $10 it cost, and can be put on any gun I choose in seconds, no reason not to use one and take up some of the recoil, IMHO.
  15. missouri dave

    missouri dave Well-Known Member

    Depends on the rifle. I had a winchester featherweight years ago in .308 with an 18 inch barrel that was absolutely brutal. My garand in 30-06 is a pussycat.
  16. IndianaBoy

    IndianaBoy Well-Known Member

    The 30-06 is not a rifle I would hand to a beginning shooter. A person too lazy to develop decent shooting skills with an 06 will not magically become a better shooter with a 223.

    I enjoy shooting my 06. The only thing keeping me from shooting hundreds of rounds is funding.
  17. Shawnee

    Shawnee member

    The recoil (and blast) of the .308 and 30/06 are pointless (and even detrimental) for varmints, deer, antelope, black bear, hogs and informal target shooting.
    Their recoil/blast is somewhat justified for hunting Elk or larger game, or some formal target shooting because of the benefit of using a caliber with increased power for game that is best hunted with more powerful calibers. A 7mm/08 or .270 would be just as good and have a little less recoil.

    No matter what the shooting task is - recoil is never your friend. It simply serves no positive purpose and often - very often - is a negative influence.

  18. elmerfudd

    elmerfudd Well-Known Member

    I don't have a problem with most full power 30 caliber rifles even when it comes to shooting 100 rounds or more from a bolt action. That said, I do have a lightweight 30-06 with a metal buttpad and shooting that with heavy bullets is uncomfortable at best. With that particular rifle, I don't like to shoot more than a few shots. That's pretty much the exception though. I've got over a dozen rifles in calibers like 7.62x54R, .308 Win, 7.5 Swiss and 8mm and the only one that kicks my butt is that lightweight 30-06.
  19. HM2PAC

    HM2PAC Well-Known Member

    Recoil is fun.

    Basically I like a little kick.

    If a person can't handle a little give and take, that's fine.

    But if you can't handle it, there is no reason to call it pointless or unjustified.
  20. aspade

    aspade Well-Known Member

    Some recoil is fun. Lets you know something happened. If it wasn't we'd just shoot rimfires.

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