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Fairly low-recoil, yet still powerful hunting rifle for my aging dad?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Cheeseybacon, Sep 27, 2006.

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  1. Cheeseybacon

    Cheeseybacon Member

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    What do you folks know of that's available in the way of powerful, yet fairly low-recoil rifles? My dad's birthday is coming up, as is deer season and I was thinking about getting him a new rifle since he constantly complains about his present rifle, an ancient 30-06. He says he's getting older and can't take the recoil like he used to. I personally don't mind it, but then again I'm a mere 25. Nevertheless I think I'd like to get him a new rifle if it will make hunting more for him enjoyable in his older age.

    I heard him talking a lot about something called a "short magnum" or something to that extent. Basically it had a fat, short case, instead of the longer, smaller-diameter cases. The idea being you get the same amount of power, but somehow having a wider, shorter case effects the manner in which the powder burns/pressure builds, which results in reduced recoil. Anyone know where I'm going with this or am I crazy? :confused:
     
  2. usp_fan

    usp_fan Member

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    I don't know that the short magnums recoil any less. What I would look for is a gas operated semi-auto rifle like the Browning BAR. I believe John Taffin just reviewed one in the latest issue of GUNS magazine. If he's looking at deer hunting. There are lots of calibers with less recoil than the great 30-06. Maybe a .243 or .260 rem. ?

    --usp_fan
     
  3. wdlsguy

    wdlsguy Member

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    I suggest something in .243 Winchester.
     
  4. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    Have you considered a muzzle brake or mercury-type recoil reducer? Both of these are pretty effective at taming recoil on centerfire rifles and would probably be less expense than a new rifle (plus he maintains familiarity with the rifle).
     
  5. Plain Old Bill

    Plain Old Bill Member

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    Swedish...

    6.5 x 55. Great cartridge; use the 140-grain bullets, great penetration.
     
  6. Jackal

    Jackal Member

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    I have 2 30'06 rifles. One is a Ruger M77 that kicks like a mule and bruises my shoulder with every shot. The other is a Remington 740 gas operated semi-auto that has very little recoil at all. I liken it to shooting my SKS. While the cartridge does matter, the platform matters just as much.
     
  7. Cheeseybacon

    Cheeseybacon Member

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    Interesting, so that short magnum stuff is a load of crap then? :scrutiny:
     
  8. rbernie
    • Contributing Member

    rbernie Member

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    Free recoil is a function of bullet/ejecta velocity and bullet weight and rifle weight. It's a purely physics kinda thing - a short-mag cartridge will have no more or less recoil than a longer cartridge with the same powder fill with the same bullet weight.

    Perceived recoil is governed by how well the rifle fits and the 'shape' of the recoil pulse (sharp and sudden or longer and slower). Semiautos tend to have softer/longer recoil pulses, rifles with straight or Monte Carlo combs tend to 'feel' softer than rifles with dropped combs, and so forth. Of course, you can also alter the recoil pulse with different recoil reducer buffers and recoil pads...

    I have also found that NOISE alters a shooter perception of recoil considerably. A longer barrel tends to be quieter than a shorter one.
     
  9. Spencer

    Spencer Member

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    Seems something like a .280 remington might be good for him.




    Oh yes, also, I think it is remington that makes a line of reduced recoil ammunition and I think its available in a .30-06.
    I'll have to check up on that though.
     
  10. miko

    miko Member

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    I also recommend a .243 - especially in something like Remington 7400 or 7600.

    miko
     
  11. mp510

    mp510 Member

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    Check out a bolt gun in 7.62x39mm. There are some nice Ruger 77's (synthetic and stainlss) on the used market, as well as various Century (et al) Mauser Sporters.

    You get .30-30 ballistics, out of a round that is pretty affordable for practice. You should be good to go for deer sized game at reasonable ranges.
     
  12. roscoe

    roscoe Member

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    You know, you can get 'managed recoil' hunting ammo from Remington for the .30-06. It is supposed to greatly reduce the recoil, while still maintaining the point of aim out to 150 yards or so. It has been well-reviewed so far and is cheaper than a new gun.
     
  13. Dave R

    Dave R Member

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    Another vote for 6.5X55.

    Europeans use it for Moose! Its probably light for that. Recoil is pretty reasonable, too. Bigger bullet than a .243.
     
  14. Run&Shoot

    Run&Shoot Member

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    Good suggestion on the managed recoil ammo from Federal and Remington. Also, a newer, better recoil pad could help. Is he currently using 180 gr loads or 150 gr.? The lighter the bullet the less the recoil (typically). The 150 gr load is plenty for deer.

    If .30-06 is still too much then the .243 would be great. Really have to be good on the shot placement and no "Idaho heart shots" (as some of us in Washington and Oregon call running away shots, at least when I am around the Idaho side of family).

    For a little more power and recoil there is the .260 and .7mm-08 Remingtons, and the 6.5x55 Swede. Even the .270 with 130 gr bullets will be noticeably less than the .30-06.
     
  15. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Ditto. It's low-recoiling but hits hard.

    Yes and no. I have worked up 150 grain SP handloads into the range of a .30-30 with the CZ mini-mauser, but it's not that easy to do. The cheap ammo is also no good for serious hunting. And it's not so cheap anymore. Cor-bon's 150's are about the only ones on the market right now I'd suggest for deer.
     
  16. musher

    musher Member

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    25'06 is another good choice in my opinion.
     
  17. 'Card

    'Card Member

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    One more vote for the 'managed recoil' or 'reduced recoil' ammo from Remington or Federal - rather than a whole new rifle. It's good stuff. Both companies claim it reduces recoil by as much as 50%.

    I've tried it, and I don't know if it's a full 50% reduction, but it does make a huge difference.
     
  18. .38 Special

    .38 Special Member

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    Guess I'll come out against the .243. Pretty underwhelming AFAIC.

    I like the 6.5s, but IMO you need to use a heavier bullet in that diameter and then put up with reduced range. (I think it's a great choice, especially with a 160 grain round nose, but for folks who like to hunt at 300+ yards, it's no bueno. By the time the bullet is light enough to move fast enough to be effective at long range, it's too light to be seriously effective on big game. IMHO, of course.)

    I think the .257 Roberts is a wonderful low-recoil round for anything that's not trying to eat you.

    And the 7x57 is simply fantastic.

    Aftre having said all that, I'll throw in another vote for reduced recoil .30-06 rounds, unless the old man is really just making excuses to buy a new rifle!
     
  19. azredhawk44

    azredhawk44 Member

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    I second the idea of changing the bolt action out for a gas semiauto.

    My .308 M1A kicks a heck of a lot less than even my .30-30. Granted, it's a heavier gun, but the cartridge is pretty powerful.

    An M1A is a bit spendy, though. If it's out of the price range then consider the Remington 7600. It's even available in .30-06 so he can use the same caliber and get reduced recoil from the gas system.
     
  20. wdlsguy

    wdlsguy Member

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    Lots and lots of dead whitetails would disagree if they could. :neener:
     
  21. Meatco1

    Meatco1 member

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    257 Roberts or 7x57, either will get the job done on anything here in the lower 48, and the recoil is far less the any 30-06, including the BAR.

    Richard
     
  22. Terrierman

    Terrierman Member

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    If recoil is the primary consideration, a .243 gas operated semi-auto will be about as mild as it gets and still be a totally capable white tail deer round. Remington 740 or BAR. A full sized bolt rifle in that same caliber with a good recoil pad would be darn mild mannered too. As others have said, the managed recoil .30-06 loads are another viable option. The .257 Roberts is another excellent recommendation with low recoil. When you go up from the .243, given the same platform, recoil follows the laws of physics and increases.

    That's why they call them the LAWS of physics, not the usually it works out this way more or less guidelines of physics.
     
  23. Hazzard

    Hazzard Member

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    Could get the old '06 ported or a muzzle brake installed. You couldn't ask for a better caliber for deer than what he's already shooting.
     
  24. usmccpl

    usmccpl Member

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    Find a hand loader and get him to make some loads for the 06 that are reduced. Still kill on the one end but dont cripple on the other end.





    one shot one kill
     
  25. .38 Special

    .38 Special Member

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    True enough, but the same could be said of the .22 LR.

    For broadside shots at unspooked animals at relatively close range, the .243 will certainly do. Otherwise, I'd prefer a bit more oomph. YMMV, as always. :)
     
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