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Old July 22, 2014, 12:13 PM   #26
Unlicensed Dremel
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Metal parts are about equal. I Paid $275 for my Venture .308.
The metal parts on the Venture are equal to what? I can't imagine any budget rifle that comes close to the Venture in quality of any parts (or parts as a whole), especially metal parts. Bomb-proof bolt, innovative styling, 60 deg throw, 5R rifling, etc.
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Old July 23, 2014, 08:28 PM   #27
reynolds357
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The Venture and The American are of about equal quality with exception of stocks. I would rank the Venture higher had I not had to send one of my Venturres back to Smith 2 times.

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Old July 24, 2014, 07:01 AM   #28
SCgman
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Howa offers 20" barrels on the 1500. Academy sports had the heavy barrel varmint versions for $550, but I would imagine that a 1500 compact ranch version with a thin barrel is available for less.
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Old July 31, 2014, 11:09 PM   #29
Gabe1972
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The Savage Axis is a good rifle. I have on in .223. Wallyworld has them for $300 and sometimes under if on sale. Last month they had them for $279.97. They have a synthetic stock, a 22" barrel (I know you said you wanted 20"), and being a Savage, they are accurate. With the money you save you could get a decent scope and some rounds to boot.
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Old August 1, 2014, 06:24 PM   #30
Orion6
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Quote:
Quote:
Metal parts are about equal. I Paid $275 for my Venture .308.

The metal parts on the Venture are equal to what? I can't imagine any budget rifle that comes close to the Venture in quality of any parts (or parts as a whole), especially metal parts. Bomb-proof bolt, innovative styling, 60 deg throw, 5R rifling, etc.
Unlicensed Dremel is correct. Nothing in the budget category compares to the Venture.

And the Venture has polished blue finish, as opposed to sandpaper rough unfinished metal like on the American.
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Old August 3, 2014, 10:10 AM   #31
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mossberg? they can be affordable bolts
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Old August 3, 2014, 05:29 PM   #32
reynolds357
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Orion, my two Ventures must have fallen off the line before they got to the metal polishing station.
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Old August 5, 2014, 11:47 PM   #33
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I'd put the T/C Venture leaps and bounds above the Ruger American.

Yeah, it says American on it... But it seems to have been made in America using the cheapest parts available with little regard to anything else. It feels cheesy in the hand, it's Ruger's answer to the Remington 770, both of which are utterly disappointing.

The Venture doesn't try to fool you into thinking it's an Icon (T/C's upper-level rifle), but it feels like a solid budget gun, and I've never heard a bad word about them.
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Old August 9, 2014, 07:37 PM   #34
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Another vote for the Marlin X7, unbeatable in its price range. Much nicer, IMO than the Axis or the Ruger American. Also offers the option of a Boyd's laminated stock, if you don't care for the tupperware, and would probably still be under the $500 budget.
The T/C venture is another viable option, which I haven't tried but a friend in Montana has one in .300 Win Mag and loves it. I am a fan of the 5R rifled barrels, and have heard very good reports of the Venture's accuracy.
I love my Stevens 200 in .243, after my son sanded down the stock, installed a Hogue recoil pad and Rifle Basix trigger. It might be the most consistently accurate sporter rifle we have. (Too bad Savage discontinued it, I liked it a lot more than the Axis/Edge).
The Howa/Weatherby Vanguard is also a nice solid rifle, but noticeably heavier than the Marlin X7, and would push your budget a little.
I have owned and hunted with rifles with 20", 22" and 24" barrels and frankly don't see much difference between them. I certainly wouldn't exclude a rifle because it has a 22" barrel rather than a 20".
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