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Old March 3, 2011, 02:17 PM   #1
cowboybebopmcgoo
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First deer rifle?

Hello, I am looking for a good starting deer rifle. preferably lever/bolt action from 243 win. to 30-30 win. I will be mounting a bushnell banner dusk and dawn 3-9x40 scope on it. any suggestions?
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Old March 3, 2011, 07:22 PM   #2
montveil
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What ranges? how big are the deer?
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Old March 3, 2011, 08:45 PM   #3
Vt.birdhunter
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Sounds like your trying to decide between a .30-30 lever action (Winchester, or Marlin would be great options) or a .243 bolt gun.

Id go with a .243 bolt gun, CZ would be my humble preference; it will out-shoot any lever .30-30 I can think of.
.243 is flatter shooting, more forgiving on longer shoots.

Cant go wrong with something like this:
http://www.impactguns.com/store/80670304107.html
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Old March 3, 2011, 09:09 PM   #4
langenc
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243 and practice 50 shots minimum every summer.

Can also use for coyotes etc.
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Old March 3, 2011, 10:12 PM   #5
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I got my first deer with a 357 magnum lever action.

If I was you I would go with the 30-30 but I am a lever action fan. The 243 is balistically superior but in the end dead is dead and so I would recommend going with what you like.
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Old March 3, 2011, 10:27 PM   #6
mrgoodwrench76
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Weocome to the forum Cowboy.

I too would go with the lever gun. Although it would depend on the area you intend to hunt. The 30-30 is more of a brush gun, not easily deterred by small branches and such whereas the .243 would be more succeptable to deviation. I'm a big fan of the Marlin lever actions.

Quote:
it will out-shoot any lever .30-30 I can think of.
Again, dependant on your situation and the area you are hunting. If your longest shot is going to be within 100 yards or so, I dont see the .243 doing anything the 30-30 wont do. I DO see the .243 being thrown off target much easier than the 30-30. Your intended use makes all the difference.
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Old March 4, 2011, 10:52 AM   #7
montveil
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I can attest that a 300 grain 50 cal ML bullet at 1400 ft/sec will be thoroughly be deflected by a 1/8 inch twig at 50 yards causing a complete miss at a deer 75 yards away.
I found this sight some time ago and love it.
Here is a deflection test they conducted-- enjoy all the other stuff also
http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot40.htm
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Old March 4, 2011, 12:02 PM   #8
cowboybebopmcgoo
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Wow, thanks for all the quick replies! one thing i forgot to mention, however, is my budget. I'm trying to find one from 300-500$. Most of my shots will be 100 yards or less, and i can buy used. I'm not exactly sure,Montveil, by your question, how big are the deer, but I'll be hunting in Minnesota, if it helps.

Thanks Again!
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Old March 4, 2011, 04:15 PM   #9
montveil
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OK, Eastern and Minnesota deer are much larger than some of those, say in Texas.
I would think a 243 would be adequate for anything out to 200 yds. If you are hunting in western Mn where shots are longer, more lead might be in order. However the 243 is also great varmint and coyote round. As always, shot placement is the key.

The 243 has 80 grain soft point loads for coyotes and 100 grain Nosler partitions for deer.

Just some thoughts on a versatile cartridge.
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Old March 4, 2011, 05:06 PM   #10
Dr. Strangelove
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Look at the Savage line of bolt actions, they are very accurate and fall in the end of your price range.
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Old March 4, 2011, 06:02 PM   #11
Cowboy_mo
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.243 bolt gun

Take a look at the Marlin XS7. They are great looking and shooting guns and are well under your $500 max price.
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Old March 4, 2011, 09:22 PM   #12
joegator
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A .243 bolt action would be a good choice as the others have said. A good quality budget rifle is the Marlin XL7 for around $300 in blue. If your budget for the rifle only is up to $500 then a Vanguard or Venture are good deals in the under $500 price range. If you are near a Dicks they run new SS ADLs for around $450.
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Old March 4, 2011, 09:37 PM   #13
Buzzcook
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There are lever actions in .243

http://www.auctionarms.com/search/di...emnum=10231989
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Old March 4, 2011, 11:07 PM   #14
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I know that you gave a range of calibers but I can't imagine that no one has suggested a good old 30-06 bolt gun. you can load or purchase from a 110 grain to a 280 grain or larger in some cases and have a single rifle that is able to go from varmits to big game with a couple clicks on the scope. just my thoughts but I have had an 06 all my life and though I do own many other calibers I seem to always reach for that 06 when I am going hunting anything bigger than a coyote.
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Old March 5, 2011, 12:33 AM   #15
T. O'Heir
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"...my budget...I can buy used..." Smart man who thinks about his budget first. Buying used is not a bad idea either. Takes a great deal of abuse to damage a modern hunting rifle.
You might find a decent used rifle, with a good scope, for not a big pile of money, in your local gun shop. Not the best time of year though. Best buys are usually just after deer season. However, you might get lucky and find one that the retailer still has 'em and will/might give you a better price.
Gun shows are another place to look. Know retail prices when shopping there.
Savage package rifles are good rifles. The scope is serviceable, but low end scope.
Don't limit yourself to a .243 either. Any of the mid calibre cartridges(.24, .25 or .26), that aren't hard to find ammo for, locally, will do nicely.
A .30-30 lever action is an 'I want one' thing. Felt recoil is more for the power of the cartridge(out of a Win M94 anyway. Not so much with a Marlin) and they are not as accurate as any bolt action.
"...DO see the .243 being thrown off target much easier than the 30-30..." Nope. A 170 will get tossed hitting a twig just as much as a 105 will.
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Old March 6, 2011, 04:56 PM   #16
cowboybebopmcgoo
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Thanks. I saw the marlin xs7 i think i'll get that.
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Old March 13, 2011, 10:27 PM   #17
Tip12095
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Savage makes great rifles for a cheap price. check them out.
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