Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Good entry-level precision rifle?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Nightcrawler, Jul 29, 2006.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Nightcrawler

    Nightcrawler Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    6,950
    Location:
    Utah, inside the Terraformed Zone
    Okay, so I'm thinking that (well, down the road a bit) I want to get a good, accurate precision rifle and learn how to use it.

    Now, as much as I'd like a custom Robar SR-100 left-handed in .300 Win Mag, I can't really justify $4,000 on this. So, I'd like your advice as to rifles, chamberings, and optics.

    Couple things. If it's a bolt gun, it MUST be left-handed. I'm not spending hundreds or thousands of dollars of my hard-earned money on a gun that's backwards for me to use.

    Secondly, I don't handload, so anything with very expensive ammo (say .338 Lapua) is probably not going to be the best choice for me. Good luck finding a left-handed .338 anyway.

    So, what rifles do I have in mind?

    Well, for starters, the Savage 10FLP Left-Handed. Savage is one of very few rifle houses that makes a "service" type bolt gun left handed. The Savage is also comparatively inexpensive, and I've heard good things about them.

    Another rifle, completely different, that I'm considering is the DPMS Panther LR-308. This AR-type autoloader has gotten nothing but good reviews and is reportedly very accurate.

    For optics, I'm considering primarily offerings from Burris and IOR Valdada. I especially like the Valdada 2.5-10x. It has half-MOA clicks and is available with an illuminated reticule, and I think it'd be a good match for either of these guns.

    So, preferances?

    Well, honestly, if I were going to get a bolt gun, I'd prefer a .300 Win Mag, just to get that extra oomph. Good luck finding a left handed "service" bolt gun in .300, though. Savage does make a left-handed .300 Win Mag rifle, but it's a hunting type with a wooden stock. Would this be accurate enough for precision work, with a change of the stock, or does it have too thin a barrel?

    I'm leaning towards the DPMS. It's not that I have anything against bolt guns. It's just that I'm unfamiliar with them. The only bolt action rifle I have any real experience with is the Mosin-Nagant M1944 carbine. On the other hand, I'm quite familiar with M16 type rifles. I know how to clean them, the manual of arms is second nature, and I understand that they can be less troublesome than some bolt rifles. (Correct me if I'm wrong, but I understand that with no stock bedding issues and such things are simplified.)

    So, what do you think? Would you make any other recommendations on either the rifles, the caliber, or the optics? What are your picks and why?

    Thank you.
     
  2. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2005
    Messages:
    14,654
    Location:
    Elbert County, CO
    IMO, a right-handed bolt gun is great for a left handed shooter if you're doing bench work. I am right-handed and prefer lefty rifles for bench shooting-you don't have to do much rebuilding of your position, since the off-hand is not supporting the rifle. It is faster, as well.

    For a budget-minded, purpose-built off-the-shelf bench gun, I would suggest the Armalite AR-30. Comes in .308, .300 WM or .338 Lapua with a 5-round detacheable box for ~$1,500. I have it's big brother, the AR-50, and I love it.
     
  3. rangerruck

    rangerruck Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2006
    Messages:
    8,374
    Location:
    Texas, baby!
    Savage , or if you can fidn it, cz LHR. The Savageis very fine accurate, easy to change out bbls if you ever need to, and has a great trigger. if you look throught their catalog, not the website, gander mnt. usually has them) you can pretty much order your Savage just the way you like.
     
  4. Nightcrawler

    Nightcrawler Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    6,950
    Location:
    Utah, inside the Terraformed Zone
    So I could order a left-handed Savage .300 Win Mag with the heavy "police" barrel and the synthetic stock? Coolness... :cool:
     
  5. GW

    GW Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2003
    Messages:
    462
    Location:
    SF Bay area
    Savage is a great choice. That accutrigger is really something!
     
  6. C-grunt

    C-grunt Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2005
    Messages:
    3,834
    Location:
    Phoenix Az
    I have the Savage 10FP in .308 and love it. Its definitely accurate, grouping 3/4 inch groups all day long and has done 1/2 inch a few times. You could spend the extra money on a nice HS or MacMillan stock and a good scope.

    Also, unlike the AR platforms, there is no gas blown back into the action making it a lot easier to clean.

    Another thing...the accutrigger adjusts down to 1.5 pounds. Its light and crisp.
     
  7. Lebben-B

    Lebben-B Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2005
    Messages:
    490
    Location:
    What's the point of sending an infantryman to Ft S
    A precision rifle needs precision ammo. For an "entry-level" precision rifle, my caliber(s) of choice would be .308 or .30-06 because it's easier and less expensive to find match-grade ammo for it, thus you can shoot it more often.

    As far as glass goes, If money were no object I'd buy a Schmidt and Bender, hands down the best scope I've ever used. Too bad it belonged to my rich uncle and I had to give it back. IOR/Valdada makes good scopes for not a lot of bank, relatively speaking. If money is an object, look into a used Leupy 10x. I've heard good things from guys that use Mueller's, but I've never used one myself so anything I say about them would be pure conjecture.

    One thing that's often overlooked when setting up a long-range nugget buster is rings. Warne makes good, consistant ones. By consistant I mean the tolerances from ring to ring are tightly held, which means less work when mounting your scope. Should you go with the DPMS you mentioned, I've had good experiences from an Armalite one-piece mount that simply screws onto the mil-std-1913 rail atop the receiver.

    Hope that helps,

    Mike
     
  8. stillwalks

    stillwalks Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2005
    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    "On the Rez" in Mich.
    enrty level rifle

    sometimes you just get lucky.....i won a Winchester Model 70 Stealth in .223 at a SCI banquet......topped it with a meuller 8.5-25x 50mm.....when i got it diaed in....at 50 yrds.....6rds in the same hole.....can't wait til i get a chance on some varmints..:)
     
  9. Fed168

    Fed168 Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2002
    Messages:
    742
    Location:
    Bull City NC
    Check out the Savage with the Accutrigger. It's a good rifle with a pretty decent trigger. Out of the box it also shoots quite nicely. A tad light in the stock, but balanced decently enough to shoot MOA.

    Glass- a question of how much do you want to spend. I think a sleeper in the scope market is the Bushnell 3200 10x fixed. Looking at Barrett's literature, this is one of the scopes he ships on his .50 rifles. I shot a Barrett with one of these scopes- hey if it can take the .50 and stay up to speed, why not get one? The glass was on par with other quality scopes, and the price is not bad either. You'll have money left over for ammo.

    Explore the option of quarter minute adjustments over half minute on the scope. Quarter minute allows for better, more precise adjustments, and finer tuning.
     
  10. nipprdog

    nipprdog Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2004
    Messages:
    1,224
    Location:
    IN
    no. go to the source.

    www.savagearms.com
     
  11. Nightcrawler

    Nightcrawler Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    6,950
    Location:
    Utah, inside the Terraformed Zone
    I've been to the source, that is, the Savage website. However, another poster said:

    The implication being that I can special order a Savage rifle in a non-standard configuration. Such a thing is hardly unheard of these days, but I'd like to know one way or another.
     
  12. dfaugh

    dfaugh Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2004
    Messages:
    1,994
    Definitely look at the Savage offerings....I think they are some of the best values out there right now. My next gun will definitley by a Savage. The Accu-Trigger is a wondeful thing, and as you mention, wapping barrels is easy.
     
  13. pcf

    pcf Member

    Joined:
    May 5, 2003
    Messages:
    862
    Location:
    Arlington, TX
    It may be out of your price range but the left hand Remington 40-XB and 40-XB KS are excellent rifle and run IIRC $1600-2000.
     
  14. Slimjim

    Slimjim Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2004
    Messages:
    751
    Location:
    Maryland.
    Remington 700P, will run about 6-700 dollars, and then put a scope on it.
     
  15. Beetle Bailey

    Beetle Bailey Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2003
    Messages:
    1,240
    Location:
    California
    I know the .300 Win. Mag. has a lot more power (and I'm all for more power if there is little downside) but have you considered the .223 rem? Since you don't handload, why not get the more economical chambering? You can get a box of 50 rounds of Black Hills 52 grain match hollow points for $14 (blue box). I've used that in my Savage 10FP and the worst groups I've gotten at 100 yards are 3/4 inch center to center.

    BTW, if you must have .300 Win. Mag. in a lefty Savage, why not just get the long action and rebarrel it? I haven't done it myself but from what I read in the magazines, it's a simple DIY to change the barrel on a Savage.
     
  16. Slimjim

    Slimjim Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2004
    Messages:
    751
    Location:
    Maryland.
    ID say he should go for .308, as its good out to 1000 yards, with the right bullet weight. Where as a .223 will be more effected by wind drift.
     
  17. Nightcrawler

    Nightcrawler Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    6,950
    Location:
    Utah, inside the Terraformed Zone
    Not really. Not enough range, in my opinion, for this kind of rifle. In any case I don't own a .223 and am probably not going to buy one. I do own a .308, though, so .308 is my mimimum caliber requirement.

    So wait. I can swap barrels on a Savage rifle myself? Really? Do you need a headspacing gauge or something?
     
  18. dieseltrooper

    dieseltrooper Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    OKC
    I finally broke down and bought a lefty after years of trying to "make-do" with right-handed equipment. The closest to being "keepers" were the Ishapore Enfield and a Schmidt-Rubin straight pull in .308.
    Now I've got a Remmy 700VS lefty I found on AR15.com. It has a Leupold MKIV mil-dot Illum reticle scope using badger rings. Also included in the package was a spotting scope, Dewey cleaning rod and a torque wrench for the rings. Encased in a hardcase with locks. Not cheap,but I finally have the "right" rifle for me.
     
  19. Dr.Rob

    Dr.Rob Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2002
    Messages:
    14,851
    Location:
    Centennial, CO
    Savage is a well made rifle and before they got popular ALL the Varminters were talking about what a tack driver the FP model was.

    You really can't go wrong there.

    Add a 4-16x Burris and you are a varmint punching hand of thor. (or whichever thunderbolt tossing deity you prefer)
     
  20. Michael Courtney

    Michael Courtney Member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2005
    Messages:
    550
    Location:
    New York
    I like the heavy-barreled Rem 700's in this role. Various cartridges are available, I lean toward the .308 for a starting precision rifle.

    Put a 3.5-10 Leupold on it and it will be a decade or more before you outgrow it, especially if you put a Jewell trigger on it.

    I've got two precision rifles that began as Rem 700 ADLs in .308 and 30-06. I added an HS Precision Stock, Jewell Trigger, and Harris Bi-pod, and tuned handloads are around .75 MOA. The heavy barrel will get you down to .5 MOA.

    Michael Courtney
     
  21. SL4SI

    SL4SI Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2006
    Messages:
    42
    Location:
    Greenbelt, MD
    I've been looking at purchasing a Savage for a while. Are the law enforcement models available to non-LE?
     
  22. rangerruck

    rangerruck Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2006
    Messages:
    8,374
    Location:
    Texas, baby!
    proley the best thing about the savage is , if you get say a short action, you can get bbls in 6mm, 243, 7.08 308, 338 etc., and switch them out yourself, savage and other sellers sometimes sells seconds bbls for about 50 bucks.
     
  23. DnPRK

    DnPRK Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2003
    Messages:
    646
    Location:
    LA, CA
    Stag Arms makes a left-handed upper for AR-15 style rifles. Many AR-15 rifles have better out-of-the-box accuracy than bolt action rifles.
     
  24. Nightcrawler

    Nightcrawler Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2002
    Messages:
    6,950
    Location:
    Utah, inside the Terraformed Zone
    Maybe, but as I've said I'm not interested in a .223.

    In any case, I've got no use for a left-handed AR-15, a left-handed Remington 870, or any of that. I'm very used to the ejection port being right there where I can observe the chamber. I learned how to shoot a rifle on an M16, and the manual of arms for one is second nature. A backwards rifle will only complicate things.

    I do, however, want a left-handed bolt action rifle, because with a scope on there it's very difficult to reach over the receiver and manipulate the bolt. I can do it just fine on an old straight-bolt rifle, like a Nagant, but on something with a downturned bolt handle and a scope it'll only make it needlessly awkward.

    I really want a .300 Mag if I get a bolt gun. If I'm going to get a .308, I might as well get the DPMS semi, I think.
     
  25. Quintin Likely

    Quintin Likely Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2002
    Messages:
    898
    Location:
    Relay 3, Target 17
    I dunno about rifles with the shifter on the wrong side.

    I'll say this though - Buy a Remington if you want something that any gunsmith can work on and something you can bolt a bunch of different things on, triggers, stocks, scope rails, etc. Buy a Savage if you want a very good rifle at a fair price, even though it doesn't have quite the aftermarket support that the Remington 700 has.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page