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Moving up from handguns to long guns

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by g_one, Feb 19, 2014.

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  1. g_one

    g_one Member

    Oct 24, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI
    Well, I got my CZ P-01 today. That brings my handgun collection to:
    Gov't 1911 (Citadel/Armscor)
    Dan Wesson Model 14 5" .357
    CZ P-01
    Beretta Nano

    Sure, there were some better options for a pocket gun than the Nano, but I really like it. I've got a good woods gun and hunting sidearm in the Dan Wesson, one of the best range toys a man could ask for in the P-01, and a nice open carry/motorcycle carry piece in the 1911. And of course, there will always be more handguns that I will WANT to own. But I feel like from a practical standpoint, I think have all the bases and necessities covered.

    What does this mean for me? Time to move over to the longarm world, where I currently only have my late father's Marlin 336 in 30-30. In my opinion, one of the best all-around hunting rifles a man can own. I think next on my list is a bolt action .17 HMR (Marlin? Savage?) so I can start hunting paper targets at the local gun club. I considered going with a .22LR, but I understand that .22LR is unreliable @ 100yds unless you really put the time in to learning how to adjust for wind. I'd love to be able to just jump right into .223 but that stuff is just too expensive right now.
  2. sappyg

    sappyg Member

    Nov 6, 2010
    South Carolina
    It would help if you could state your expectations. Want top accuracy? Looking for a fun gun for the range? Need to know more about what you're looking to accomplish.

    The 17 hmr is a boss at 100 yards but is usually just as expensive as cheap 223. Some 22 lr ammo can be very accurate at 100 yards and a lot of fun.

    With that said I think every gentleman should own a good 22 lr rifle or two.
  3. Rusty Luck

    Rusty Luck Member

    Oct 6, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    I second sappyg, I have a 17hmr and I love it but I shoot my savage 223 bolt more. And my AR15 WAYY more. Get a 22lr or a 223 bolt for long range paper fun. Or get an AR15 for just plain old fun.
  4. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Member

    Jan 8, 2011
    A CZ bolt .22lr in your style will be hard to beat for quality.
  5. redneck383

    redneck383 Member

    Jan 28, 2013
    Genesee County, MI
    I'd recommend a look at .22 WMR. It's got more velocity, does a bit better in the wind and has a better 100yd trajectory than the .22LR. I don't have a .17 but friends do and like them a lot too. If you reload, .223 can be a fairly inexpensive round too. I have an AR and will admit that it is an awesome gun, but has the ability to set your wallet on fire. A Savage bolt gun in 22 mag is a good way to zap anything from paper up to coyotes.
  6. B!ngo

    B!ngo Member

    Dec 11, 2011
    I think the best way to start (or in my case was to re-start) was with a .22LR bolt rifle. Slow, careful shots with some thinking time between each to improve the quality of your shooting. The .22LR bolt is the one I always return to.
    Then I purchased a Tikka T3 Lite in .223 with a good scope. Love it too. Far fewer variables and greater accuracy but try to improve or master the .22LR first.
  7. BCRider

    BCRider Member

    Nov 15, 2008
    Pacific North"Wet" Coast of Canada
    The .17HMR will be affected by wind at 100 as well. Maybe not as much but you still want to learn to read and compensate for wind.

    And really reading and adjusting for wind is supposed to be part of the skill set for longer distance shooting.

    I've also seen where the trajectory and wind motion of the .22 at 100 is supposed to be pretty similar in MOA shifts to .308 shot at something like 300 or 500 yards or some such thing. So the .22LR is a good trainer for longer distance center fire later on.

    Not to mention the price of .17HMR. I know that .22LR is crazy just now but if folks can stop panicing and hoarding then we'll see the prices come down to being reasonable again. And it would be nice to have the rifle that uses it.

    In the end it's your choice though. You need to figure out what you want and why.
  8. tuj

    tuj Member

    May 2, 2011
    good quality 22lr at 50 yards is about equal to the accuracy of the 17hmr (all the ammo is made by CCI, just branded differently) at 100 yards. You will learn equal amounts shooting each at those distances. While I have successfully hit a 3" target at 260 yards with 22lr, I do *not* recommend such endeavors as they are highly susceptible to wind.

    At 100 yards I have shot 0.4" 5-shot groups with a Savage 93r17 from the bench. Likewise, I have shot a 0.1" 5-shot group at 50 yards with match-quality 22lr from my custom 40X.

    Eventually 22lr will become available again, and it is available if you want match-quality ammo. But the low end and mid-range ammos are all gone for probably 6-months to a year. Also 17hmr rifles are available fairly cheaply and provide good accuracy. I would recommend the Savage accu-trigger over the Marlin. But a good high-power scope on it, and you can start hunting for small groups at 100 yards.

    Oh and while .223 can be had for about the same price as 17hmr, the 17 is a really fun round. It has almost no recoil yet maintains good trajectory beyond any of the other popular rimfire cartridges.
  9. sakata8242

    sakata8242 Member

    Sep 2, 2010
    At least you can buy .223. I haven't seen a bulk pack of .22 for sale anywhere around here since Nov 2012 and you'll be paying upwards of $50/500 if not more if you do. I've stopped shooting .22 as I don't want to use up what little reserve I have left. A .22 firearm would be the last thing I'd consider buying at this point in time. I see .17HMR all over at the local Wallyworld though.
  10. hiplains

    hiplains Member

    Feb 15, 2014
    Take the time, save some here and there. 223 with the ability to reload will never let you down. My $0.02. kris
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