View Full Version : All purpose bolt gun- your choice

Rustle in the Bushes
July 23, 2012, 11:40 PM
What would be a good bolt gun for everything,to hunt with, shoot a bunch at the range, and be able to run away from zombies as well of course.

- Must be a decent manly calibre, .308 probably or 30-06.
- Cant have a thin sporter barrel(heats up too quick)
- Also cant be a super heavy bench rest gun (needs to be decently portable)
- Needs to be scoped, variable scope with a low to high range. 2-9x

Im thinking of something akin to the WW2 bolt actions but Id be interested to hear opinions!

Which rifle puts these two types of guns together(modern hunting rifle and serious range rifle) and comes out with a decent compromise?

July 23, 2012, 11:51 PM
Most sporter weight barrels are about what you want. I believe the ultra-lights, or featherweights are what you want to avoid as fas as being concerned about the barrel heating up and compromising grouping ability, though if properly bedded, it may not be a problem, and would be nicer to carry out in the hills.

The 1903 Springfield had a barrel that most sporting companies basically copied as to weight and contour.

If you like military type actions, a commercial Mauser or 1903 Springfield would do all you want, in standard contour barrel profile, with the action properly bedded in the stock. I like both of them, and the earleir Ruger 77's with tang safeties. Hard to go wrong with most standard sporters today as a general prupose rifle though. Choose good quality glass, in a power rnage that allows a wide range of practical use. 2-7 or 3-9 is fine on both ends of the power spectrum for most practical uses. Buy good glass if you want to shoot well, and see clearly at distance. Some less expensive scopes may do alright, but buying quality is rarely a letdown. I like Leupold glass, in the VX2 or VX3 lines.

I like 22" as a good all around barrel length for a bolt gun.

July 23, 2012, 11:57 PM
I like the Ruger mkII in 25-06, Mines a medium heavy 24'' Hart barrel.
Dont really like to run from zoobies,Rather stay & shoot a few.It does a good job at the range & a super job on Deer size game.Just a great rifle in general.;)

July 24, 2012, 02:31 PM
Stainless/synthetic Ruger or Winchester in 308 with a quality 2-7X scope. You could hunt anything in North America, most of it at ranges of up to 400 yards. A sporter barrel will do just fine. No reason to lug around extra weight. Avoiding ultra thin mountain rifle barrels might be a good idea.

Ammo is cheap enough, easy to find and recoil is very reasonable. As a rule they tend to be quite accurate with a wide variety of ammo.

July 24, 2012, 04:06 PM
Get a heavy fluted barrel, accuracy of a bench gun with fast cooling and cut weight. Cant go wrong there, like said a mauser action may suit you but I would buy new. Personally im not a mauser 98 fan but alot of people love them. Problem is the 98 isnlt used anymore. Basically all rifles today use in sort a mauser action, they rotate up, have a claw and pull the shell out. I think if you want a older weapon look, a 98 is what you may be looking for. However the Ruger Hawkeye and CZ550 look about as WW2ish that you can get. Caliber is totally up to you, I prefer the -06 over the 308 but thats your call. For optics get the best you can buy, Im a Nikon guy, Prostaff at 150 bucks, Buckmasters at 250 and Monarch starts at 350 and goes to 1200. Get what you can afford.

July 24, 2012, 04:10 PM
whoa.....deja vu... it's almost like I've read this before....hmm I guess I'll give this the same answer I feel like I may have already given.;)

let's see. in the realm of military to civilian rifles the enfield no4 is a good choice. sporterized examples can be found at just about any pawn shop and hunting ammo for 303 is pretty easy to get a hold of. I love the enfield action and for a general purpose, varmint-elk hunting round 303 is hard to beat. there are a number of scope rails available for them that mount in 5 minuted without drilling and tapping new holes in the reciever. I have a springfield 1903A4(sniper model) and they are really fun. I love shooting it it long range and anti varmint operations are really fun as well. however the A4 is rare and VERY expensive and I'm kindof a purist when it comes to milsurps so unless you find one that has already been sporterized, which is also not very hard to find at your local pawnshops, I recommend against "bubba-ing" a nice 1903A3.

if you want a current production, lightweight, bull barrel rifle there is the remington 700 with the stainless fluted barrel. they are a little spendy as far as 700s are concerned but you will have the accuracy of the heavy barrel but the fluting will cut down on weight.

July 24, 2012, 07:11 PM
savage 10series , cheap, reliable , high quality and avail in many sizes, calibers and setups "bench, sport etc" I have a 10FP and love it

July 24, 2012, 07:24 PM
Mine's a Savage 110 in.30-06. It's got a wooden stock, a sporter barrel, and a fixed 6X scope. I buy other rifles, play with them for a while, tweak them, then give them away to a son or grandson. The .30-06 remains. It's my rifle. There are many other like it, but this one's mine.

July 24, 2012, 07:31 PM
I always do the same I never leave a rifle stock, i always mod it change it sell it trade it etc. but the savage I still got pretty much stock and use it alot shooting off the back deck or hunting when needbe

Bill from Boomhower,
July 24, 2012, 09:36 PM
I have a deep desire to own a Springfield A-1 SOCOM .308 Win, Parkerized w/ Scout scope. I don't hunt anymore, but certainly could amoung other uses with one.the caliber is excellent, I'm no auto loader fan, but that's my choice. And Paw Paw, I used to have a Savage 111 Chieftain in 30.06 w/ Bushnell 4 x 38mm scope, then later a Bushnell 3 x 9 x 40mm scope. I had other nice rifles, but always took that one for deer, but it got stolen. Great gun, I'm sure you feel the same about your 110.

Art Eatman
July 24, 2012, 09:41 PM
Based on the way it shoots, the Ruger Scout I shot--a friend's rifle--would certainly do quite well until something maybe better comes along.

Short and handy for hunting or defense. With a 3x9 and tailored handloads, the groups certainly wouldn't be shabby.

I'd get the shorter mags, though. Another thread here has a member recommending the five-round mags as good for carry at the balance point.

July 24, 2012, 10:19 PM
nothing wrong with light barrels you just need to take your time shooting. It's one of those questions were you just go to the store and get what scratches your fleas. The last one I saw that I lked was a 1912 mauser action built up into a nice 257 roberts sporter that with a little stock work could be a grand little set up for anything smaller than Elk.

July 24, 2012, 11:38 PM
Savage makes a nice short rifle they call The Hog Hunter. Handy looking gun.

July 25, 2012, 01:01 AM
I went with the Remington 700 SPS Tactical in .308 with a 20" bull barrel, the short barrel makes it hand(ier) but still is not a light weight due to the thicker profile barrel.
For a scope I went with a Leupold 1.5-5x24mm illuminated dot-in-circle reticle for low light use.
It is the only bolt action I own at the time and so would consider it my current "all purpose bolt-action".
You just have to do your homework, narrow down your calibers then hunt down the different manufacturers that offer your criteria. From there I'd try to handle as many in person as possible, check out the reviews and go from there.

July 25, 2012, 09:29 AM
While I LOVE my Rem 700 w/5R barrel in 308, for more portability and all around usage (I built my 700 into a long range gun with a heavy scope, bipod, and new bottom metal), I'd grab my Ruger GSR. The rifle is light enough to carry all day, plenty accurate for just about anything out to say 700 yds, and with the XS rail, you can mount any scope you want on it. +1 for the 5 round mags - the 10's are too long, and become cumbersome IMHO.

July 25, 2012, 09:43 AM
nothing wrong with light barrels you just need to take your time shooting

Last weekend I took my Model 70 Featherweight in 270 out and set up a steel target at 400 yards just to see what would happen when the barrel got hot.

I shot 15 rounds fairly quick. I had one of those laser temp gadgets used to measure temp in auto mechanics.

It was warm to start. Before I fired the first round I measured the temp of the barrel just in front of the chamber. It was 87*. After 15 rounds it was 126* .

I was using 150 grn Berger VLDs at 2880 fps. All the rounds stayed in a 6 inch circle. I couldn't tell which was the first rounds or last rounds. I was shooting in the sling prone position. I figured 6 inches at 400 yards is plenty good enough for hunting. The light Featherweight is great for packing, since I spend more time carrying the rifle then shooting it while hunting.

I single loaded and kept the ammo in the shade of my shooting stool, as I wanted to keep the ammo temp constant.

I guess my un-scientific test really didn't prove anything. But for a hunting rifle where I know I wouldn't be shooting that much, I really doubt the pencil barrel of the Featherweight would make a difference.

First off, I've never hunted at 400 yards, and if I was too need 15 rounds shooting at a critter, I'd give up hunting.

July 25, 2012, 04:42 PM
First off, I've never hunted at 400 yards, and if I was too need 15 rounds shooting at a critter, I'd give up hunting.

Me too. If he's much over 250 yards, I give him a walk. I'm comfortable shooting at game at that distance, but not much over. If I lived out west, or had access to a long beanfield, I might practice more long range shooting, but in my hunting area and the woods I traverse, 250 yards is just about the limit.

July 25, 2012, 04:59 PM
My personal choice would be one of my SIG SHRs. For something more readily available, a toss up between my Winchester M-70 XTR in 308 and my Savage 110 in 30/06. Not too many 3-400 yard shots here in NJ, in fact even 100 yards shots are few and far between. I prefer somewhat heavier barrels, of course at 5'10" and 200 more or less muscular pounds I am not a lightweight myself.

July 25, 2012, 05:29 PM
I'm with Art...
The Ruger Gunsite.
One of the best, "all-around" bolt actions to have hit the market.
The .308 is the jack-of-all-trades, master of none caliber- that does just about everything reasonably well.

July 26, 2012, 10:10 PM
Another vote for the Ruger GSR, it fits the bill

Sasquatch in MN
July 26, 2012, 10:27 PM
I'm a huge fan of the Ruger Gunsite Scout. Likely the most useful bolt action that I've acquired in the past 10 years. Not planning on scoping it, but the irons are really good and adequate out to 250 or so for me.

Definitely like the polymer mags over the initial steel ones.


July 26, 2012, 10:50 PM
Savage 10 Predator in .308

July 26, 2012, 11:01 PM
I'd recommend a Blaser R93 lrs2.

Leave a Ruger or Remington in the dust.

July 26, 2012, 11:13 PM
Just seems to me that the magazines on the Ruger GSR are its greatest shortcoming......for really long term service. They will wear out, be damaged, or lost, so with that in mind I rather go with the Ruger Compact Magnum...in 308.....blind magazines work for decades...as proven by how many Springfields/Mausers?? The 20 inch medium wieght barrel, back up iron sights, offers just as much as the GSR.

July 27, 2012, 12:32 AM
Sako/Tikka T3 Hunter.

. about 6.75lbs
. several calibers to choose from
. smooooooth action
. self adjustable trigger
. detachable magazine
. very accurate (very)
. reasonably priced
. etc. etc. etc.

IMO, one of the best bargains on the market. I love mine.


July 27, 2012, 01:12 AM
ust seems to me that the magazines on the Ruger GSR are its greatest shortcoming......for really long term service. They will wear out, be damaged, or lost, so with that in mind I rather go with the Ruger Compact Magnum...in 308.....blind magazines work for decades...as proven by how many Springfields/Mausers?? The 20 inch medium wieght barrel, back up iron sights, offers just as much as the GSR.

Accuracy International magazines are not a shortcoming.

July 27, 2012, 08:33 AM
My answer to that question is my Remington LTR in .308 - 20 inch heavy fluted barrel with Leupold VX3 2.5-8 scope.

July 27, 2012, 08:46 AM
I'd go for a CZ in .30-06.

Ideally with the 3 position safetly and detachable mag options.

July 27, 2012, 09:37 AM
Remington XCR 25-06,

July 27, 2012, 03:27 PM
till they are lost or damaged...

July 27, 2012, 03:30 PM
Winchester Model 70 in .270WIN

July 27, 2012, 08:48 PM
till they are lost or damaged...

like any other part of any other rifle.