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Old July 23, 2013, 11:52 PM   #1
Weeknshooter
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Which one???

Hello All!

I am wanting to get a bolt action but I am having trouble deciding which to get. It is only going to be used for target shooting and I was thinking of getting a 308 because I wanting to work my way up to beyond 500 yds (ultimately up to 1k yds for now) and if I can get ammo at decent price. I just want to see if I can do it more for just simply bragging rights. This is just for my own enjoyment and I would maybe shoot once a week if that and probably only one box of ammo. I'm not looking to get into competitions (at least not yet) this is more of a "try it and see if you like it" thing. I don't think I would need a heavy barrel because I plan on only shooting about 3 rounds before I take a break anyways. I want to keep under $500 and preferably in the $300-$400 range. I don''t want to invest in an expensive rifle right off the bat and end up not really getting into long range shooting or really long range (beyond 1k yds). Also, I don't want to pay for something I'm never going to use or that I can get away with a cheaper priced rifle. I'm not sure if I want a Remington 700 or not because I like having something different from others. I also want something that is reliable that I won't have to worry about reliability and can shoot at least a 1 MOA. Here is what I am consiering:

Ruger American
Thompson Center Venture
Marlin X7 or X7VH
Savage Model 10 ( I think)
Rem. 783
Possibly a cheaper Rem 700

*Note: The Savage is what I saw at a local gun shop and it's part of their law enforement line and isn't on their website. (according to the salesman) It was priced for $500 and I think it had the Accutrigger & Accustock with a heavy barrel.
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Old July 24, 2013, 12:00 AM   #2
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Savage by far imo.
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Old July 24, 2013, 12:05 AM   #3
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I also would need some advice on which rings and scope to go with whatever rifle I end up getting. Keep in mind I am on a budget so most bang for my buck is appreciated. I was thinking of a scope that could do around th 500 yd mark and once I get accomplished there and can get a scope that will go farther. The farthest I've shot was 100 yds so my first goal is to build up to the 500 yd mark. Which might kind of difficult because its hard to find a range locally that goes past 100 yds.
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Old July 24, 2013, 12:11 AM   #4
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why? I'm just not sure if I'm sold on the heavy barrel yet. The less I pay on the rifle the more I can put towards a scope! I don't know a whole lot about the Savage. I really liked seeing the thread awhile back where someone shot I think it was like 1040 yds with a Ruger Am. 30-06. Not sure if he had it customized at all and I cannot remember who it was.
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Old July 24, 2013, 12:28 AM   #5
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As far as the barrel goes if its going to be minor differences i.e. 1/4" - 1/2" between a "bull" barrel vs a "sporter" barrel I think I rather have a sporter. Are there any notorious problems that I should be aware of with any of these rifles I mentioned? Such as that the Ruger's stock is flimsy enough when you have it on a rest the location of the rest could affect accuracy? Also I heard the Marlin sometimes have extractor problems (breaking) and the recall on the t/c's. Any of these true? (except t/c of course)
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Old July 24, 2013, 06:30 AM   #6
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If the Savage is NIB, it is a steal at $ 500. New model 10s list for $935. Three years ago they listed for about $ 800.

I have two Savage Law Enforcement Model 10s heavy barrels.
One is a model 10 FP with an AccuTrigger but no AccuStock with a 22 inch barrel - it is an early model before the AccuStock was released.

I also have a new 10 FCP-K that has both the AccuStock and Accutrigger. It has a 24 inch barrel and a 2 inch muzzle brake.

Both barrels are free floated from the stocks.

The original 10 FP has 6000 rounds through it and has served me well.
It is going back to Savage for a new barrel.
Its top 25 hand loads averaged 0.438 over 154 measured groups at 100 yards. The stock seems flimsy but apparently it works just fine.
I shoot with a bipod and a rear bag at the range and the stock works just fine.

The new 10 FCP-K is slightly more accurate and I am still working up loads for it but so far it is maybe 0.01 to 0.02 inches more accurate at 100 yards with its best loads. The AccuStock is more rigid and I attribute that to the slightly better accuacy.

The heavy barrels are better for range work IMO because they don't heat up as fast.
All my hunting barrels in calibers above .22-150 are prone to very quick heating.
Light barrels are great for hunting to reduce the weight but not as great at the range when you are trying to shoot groups to test loads and don't want to wait for barrels to cool.

Savage makes 'special' models for some large distributors.
My buddy has a Model 10 FCP that has a fluted barrel that was made for Dick's sporting goods. It shoots just as accurately as the other Savage .308s that range buddies have. My old Savage impressed my son and my range buddies so there are now 5 Savage model 10s in .308 and two in .223 at our range. They all shoot just about as accurately.

The Savage has lots of scope rail options available including multiple MOA adjusting rails. If you get a Weaver or Picatinny rail, there are a lot of rings choices available in multiple price ranges. Rings for 30 mm scopes are more expensive as are the scopes with 30 mm tubes.

I have used both and the 30 mm tubes are slightly brighter in large front objective sizes comparing objective lens sizes of 50mm+.

I also bought a Remington 700 SPS with a heavy barrel on sale for just over $ 400. But I changed the gritty factory trigger to a Timney trigger. The factory stock wasn't up to the potential of the rifle so I replaced it with a Bell & Carlson stock. With those two changes, it really became a keeper. Total cost after the trigger and barrel replacements was $ 780.

All the Savages shot great right out of the box.
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Old July 27, 2013, 12:14 AM   #7
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barrels

How many consecutive shots are taken (usually) before they heat up enough to affect the accuracy? How long would it take to cool down? Also, would a light barrel be just as accurate as a heavy barrel if you only take one hot out of each? I'm going to try and call the gun shop and find out exactly what model it is, could it be a TR10?
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Old July 28, 2013, 11:18 PM   #8
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Savage

I called the gun shop on Saturday and the Savage model I was referring to is a TR10 or 10TR. He's said it's a law enforcement rifle and it isn't on the Savage website. I am having trouble finding info about it, so if anyone has heard of it I would appreciate some input about it!
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Old August 18, 2013, 08:58 PM   #9
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You will want to get into reloading.
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Old August 26, 2013, 11:19 PM   #10
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reloading

Yes I was considering that especially if I really get into it. How much do you think it would cost to get started?
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Old August 27, 2013, 09:29 AM   #11
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Learning to be a good rifleman will probably take a lot more shooting that what you described.
Especially if you want to do it at ranges longer than the usual 100 yds.
One of the ways that some of the serious competitors practice is with a good .22.
The technique and skill required for accurate shooting with a .22 at the commonly available distance of 100 yds, is the equivalent of a .308 at 300 yds.
A good a place to start as any.
Just a thought.
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Old August 27, 2013, 11:27 AM   #12
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I too would suggest starting with a good .22lr bolt gun.
While you are perfecting your skill, and .308 will definitely
be your rifle caliber choice, start collecting your ammo [.308]
or start buying your re-loading equipment.
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Old August 29, 2013, 11:32 AM   #13
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If you do the math you will find your ammo cost vastly exceed the cost of the rifle purchase.

So, even if you buy the Savage, get the best setup they have (and I don't mean that negatively to Savage, basically if you go for the best price vs accuracy which by all reports Savage is, get the best one). Nothing I have read says you will get more accuracy out of a Remington so the Savage is the best bang for the buck.

A good reloading setup is going to cost you $500. Yes I know they have the "kits" but the kits do not cover the needs anymore. They are a good start (or better yet look on Craigs list or the local Sports sales internet sitet and buy used, most of it is very low or no use).

Use the reloading section here to get good views on equipment, this is just my take for my use.

What you will want to add to the basic press and dies is a digital scale, RCBS type case conditions (chamfer necks inside and out, primer pocket cleaner and neck clear all motorized)

I have no use for the primers on the presses and the RCBS universal primer tool is the way to go.

If you want to load faster then a powder dispense is the way to go and the good ones cost $350 (RCBS Charge master I think is the best one out thee)

You need to be withing 1/10 of a gr to ensure accuracy and the balance scaled do not do that. Charge-master has a digital scale.

Single load use does not pay off very fast as you are into 500+ for a good setup that works and is efficient (yes you can to all the stuff by hand but its tedious and hard on the hands as you get older and that happens regardless!)

You still need case lube and a case cleaner (I like the dry media and have an Ultra Vibe 10 but that cost $140 or so as I recall). There are liquid cleaner advocates out there, I think its both messy and a pain and would not touch one with a 458 caliber shell!

I had a lot of it stashed when I got back into it so have only added the bits to improve the process (Case Prep, new tumbler, cheap digital as I have not managed to convince myself on the Charge Master).

Due to the cost its a long term investment, research it all and get the good stuff and skip the annoying cheap in between (my only one is the cheap digital scale which I have learned to manage by constant keeping an eye on it and recalibrating it regularly while loading as it drifts off)

I load fairly low scale quantity wise (but also do 5 calibers) so its tolerable though the Chargaemaster continues to call me as powder dispensing is the slowest part of the operation now and some like 4831 simply don't dispenses well unless its a Chargemaster type.
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Old August 29, 2013, 12:15 PM   #14
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From what I can find posted on the web, the TR 10 has an Accustock and Accutrigger with a 20 inch threaded barrel "varmint barrel"

It sounds like a 10FP with an Accustock and a slightly shorter unfluted but threaded barrel - 20" instead of the 22" unthreaded unfluted barrel my FP has.

There were a couple of posts in some of the forums that claimed it wasn't as accurate as some other Savages but there were no details and no data provided.

A friend at our range has a Savage Precision Rifle with a 20 inch barrel that doesn't shot as accurately as our slightly longer barrels with factory ammo, but the owner hasn't done any experimentation with factory ammo or any hand loading work to find out what the rifle likes to shoot so I wouldn't make any claims about it accuracy or lack of it.

With any rifle, even those that shoot accurately out of the box, you can't be sure the first load or first factory ammo you try will be the best or the worst it will shoot. I have found that after you measure your chamber, you need to experiment with the seating depth for each particular rifle if you are going to get the best accuracy out of it.

Re: Reloading
Because I have always gotten better accuracy out of every rifle with hand loads than will factory ammo, I would heartedly recommend that you get into reloading if you get a .308. That his how I started into reloading and now load for 7 rifle calibers and 5 pistol calibers. The first of this month, I passed a 3 year reloading milestone having loaded my 18,000 round. Most of those were rifle loads and all rounds were loaded with a single stage press.

I would recommend that you start with a good press and a good powder measure - the RCBS Chargemaster 1500 has served me well as has the Redding Big Boss II press.

I have tried a number of die manufacturers (Lee, RCBS, Redding and Forster) and have gravitated to Forster dies for the rifles that shoot most accurately. Lee dies served me well but they are harder to adjust with certainty. I find that I can get more consistent loads with dies that have lock rings to keep them in the proper set up position because I switch dies to load different calibers so much. I particularly like the Forster micrometer dies (more expensive but worth it) because they can be adjusted so easily when adjusting seating depths when doing experimentation.

I can load .308 rounds with competition bullets (Sierra Match King 168 grains with Lapua brass and match primers) for less than 46 cents a round.

Federal Premium Gold Match Sierra Match King ammo (often referred to as the gold standard of .308 ammo) is now selling for form $1.80 to $2.00 a round if you can find it. It used to cost $1.20 to $1.40 a round depending upon sales when I started 3 years ago. It doesn't take long to recover the cost of reloading equipment when you are saving $1.40 to $1.60 with every pull of the trigger.

Last edited by Rimfire5; August 29, 2013 at 12:24 PM.
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Old September 23, 2013, 01:36 AM   #15
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Thanks for all of the input guys I really do appreciate it? Does anyone have any experience with the Remington 783? I saw an advertisement in a magazine saying it can do 5 shots in approx. 1" ( I think). Also, how are the varmint barreled X7s? Just curious could a hunter sized barrel be just as accurate as a heavy barrel shooting 1 shot each? Or is the only advantage of the heavy barrel because you can shoot more consistent shots before noticing a change in the grouping? I'm still kind of on the fence between a hunting rifle and a target/tactical rifle. What would be a good bolt action .22 lr these days? My dad has an old Marlin lever action .22 and my grandfather has an old Winchester bolt action bolt seem to do pretty good for me. I really just want a good bang for the buck but at the same time regret not buying something else. Although I know that it is probably nearly impossible to achieve this!
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Old September 23, 2013, 01:38 AM   #16
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So far the Savage seems to be the one I'm leaning towards because it seems the most rifle for the money. What would be the estimated max effective range with this Savage with its 20" barrel?
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Old September 23, 2013, 07:11 AM   #17
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I'm going back to your original post and lets talk a bout the rifles. If it is strictly for target shooting you're better off with a heavy barreled rifle. It has nothing to do with the barrel heating up, it has everything to do with weight. Shooting LR requires a stable shooting position, and a heavy rifle will be more stable on sandbags bags, mechanical rests, or bi-pod than a light rifle.

So IMO you can throw out the hunting weight rifles and that will leave you with.

Marlin X7VH
Savage Model 10
Rem 700 SPS

So now with a starting budget of $500 your best deal will probably be the Marlin since most I've seen start around $400. I've never owned one but from what I've read on line they'll usually shoot sub MOA out of the box. I like both Savage and Remington but a Savage M12 and an Remington M700 VT, will more than likely start out north of $500.

Then next problem with the budget friendly rifles is the stock. The stocks on these rifles is that they are injection molded, and very flexible when compared to other stocks. You won't have as much of a problem if you rest it on bags or a mechanical front rest, however if you put a bi-pod on it and load it up you'll cause the forend to flex which will cause accuracy problems. So if you buy any of these rifles you can expect to have to replace the stock in the future with a more stable one. This is where you'll be limited on stocks for the Marlin, as I think the only aftermarket stocks being made for it are the Boyd's stocks.

Now for the good news, you can reach 500 yards with just about any rifle. However, when you go to 1K you'll have to invest in better equipment. Plus if you can't find a range that offers 500-1000 yard shooting within an easy commute, then you might want to concentrate on the ranges you can shoot where you can shoot easily.
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Old September 23, 2013, 11:59 AM   #18
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Get the best of both worlds. A target rifle (heavy barrel) but short so it's lighter weight and can be taken hunting. I recently bought a distributor special that is not listed on Savage's website. Savage 10-PSR. It's the model 10 in .308 with 18" heavy barrel, threaded for a muzzle brake or suppressor and has 5R rifling. I added a JP Tactical Comp to mine to help with muzzle jump and it's now wearing a Vortex Viper 6.5-20x44 scope with 30mm tube using Weaver picatinny base and Warne low steel rings.
I ordered it from Tombstone Tactical online and was $550 shipped...

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Old September 23, 2013, 03:37 PM   #19
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If you don't have acsess to a range over 100yds don't bother with a .308

Get a Marlin XT-22 and a bunch of cheap bulk ammo and learn how to shoot with a scope and make wind calls.
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Old September 25, 2013, 03:46 PM   #20
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Love my Ruger American in .308.
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Old January 9, 2014, 02:44 AM   #21
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New Purchase

So my father and I were at the local gun show this past weekend and found a Rem. for $339 new. I jumped on it because it was a .308 and Wal-Mart was selling them for $387 and figured I probably would have a hard time finding it cheaper. Next question will be what are good bases, rings and a scope for the type of shooting I describe earlier? Keep in mind I am on a budget so the cheaper the better while still good quality. I called Redfield/Leupold and they recommended the following:

Redfield Revenge part# 117853 3-9 x 42mm DNS $200
Redfield Revolution part# 118348 3-9 x 40mm Tact MOA Reticle (not shown on website yet.

Leupold VX2 4-12 x 40mm Adj. Obj. CDS
Leupold VX3 4.5-12 x 40mm (or 50mm) CDS

Leupold Base part # 55742 $30
Leupold Med. High rings part# 49901 $30

*Prices are approx. off of either Gander Mnt. or Bass Pro websites
* the RF Rev. scope is a new model that I think will be available this Feb.

Also, considering a Nikon Prostaff or equivalent to the previous 2 brands only because my buddy has one on his Rem 700 SPS and it seemed pretty clear.
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Old January 9, 2014, 10:54 AM   #22
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So I'm guessing you bought the M783 Remington?

I wouldn't buy a Redfield Revenge or the Prostaff scope, if you have $200 to spend go to SWFA "The Sample List" or cameralandny.com and look for some demo/used optics. In fact The Sample List has a 3-10X40 Weaver Grand Slam that will be a far superior scope than the Revenge or Prostaff for $199.00. Or if you have to have brand new then a Burris Fullfield II 3-9X40 for $198.95 is going to be better than a Revenge or Prostaff as well.

I'm a Leupold guy, and there's nothing wrong with you calling them and asking for their opinion. However, they're only going to recommend what they sell, but if I can't get into something new of the quality of a VX2, Buckmaster, or Elite I usually don't waste my time, and start looking used. You can do far cheaper than the Leupold rings and bases as well, and still have a good set up. Any base that fits a Savage 10/110 round receiver will work on your 783 as well. I'd go with a mount system rather than a ring and base combo like you listed, check out the ones I linked for a $20 savings:

DNZ Hunt Master 1" scope mounts $39.95
Talley LWT 1" scope mounts $39.95

Good luck and happy shooting!
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Old January 11, 2014, 02:10 AM   #23
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Quick question, The mounts I listed were $30x2 each = approx. $60 (bass pro) The mounts you gave were $40 each (x2) =$80 correct? What about the Revolution series from Redfield? I couldn't get swfa.com link to load???? They gave me a part # for the Buckmaster also if needed. They (Redfield) said with the Revolution I listed, there wasn't much difference it and either the VX2 or VX3 ( cannot remember which model) until you get into lower light situations because they are using Leupold glass???
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Old January 11, 2014, 08:15 AM   #24
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The Revolution isn't bad, but when it comes to scopes, I would find the best one you can get with your money and then spend more and don't eat for a week. The VX-2 is a sure step up from a Revolution, but I think there's better values. That Weaver Grand-Slam 'taylorce1' posted would be a great option. If you could find a way to get into a Vortex Viper 3.5-10x50 for about $180 more than your budget, you would be set for a long time.


OP: Those mounts come as a set. $40/pair.
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Old January 11, 2014, 08:51 AM   #25
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Those are complete ring mount set for $40, buy either one and you can mount a scope. With the base and ring sets you quoted earlier you have to buy the base and rings separately and they'll cost you $60 to mount a scope.

I own a couple of Redfield Revolution scopes and they aren't bad for the money I spent. I was paying around $125 for the 2-7, $150 for a 3-9, and $200 for the 4-12, and I tried them all I still own a 2-7 and 4-12. When I bought them they were the price the Revenge scopes sell for now. I'd put the Redfield's I own on par with the old VX-I or Rifleman scopes optically but with better adjustments for elevation and windage.

Since Leupold upgraded all of the VX lineup last year I feel they are a better value for the money. One thing we know about Redfield is that they are manufactured by Leupold. The thing we don't know is if they use the same lens coatings as the VX1 line up, they are calling it a different name illuminator coatings vs. multicoat 4. So I'm guessing that lens coatings are a little different, and comparing my daughters new VX1 to my Revolution scopes I'd say it isn't the same coating. Plus you'll only spend about $20 more to get an actual Leupold VX1 vs. Revolution until you get to the 4-12 power range.

I'm not saying the Redfield won't be a serviceable scope but I think there are better options to get a better scope for the same money. I'm sorry the link didn't work for you but you can whip out some google-fu and find it without too much trouble.
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