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ninjaamt
February 11, 2014, 01:16 PM
I'm looking for an all purpose rifle, probably a military surplus one which will give the most bang for the buck! LOL. That is reasonably reliable, not pricey, ammo generally available etc. Thanks for your suggestions!

Ruger480
February 11, 2014, 01:25 PM
Do you have an action preference? Bolt or auto? What will be the main purpose of your new weapon? Home defense, target practice or hunting?

It's easier to make suggestions if we have a few more specifics.

ninjaamt
February 11, 2014, 01:56 PM
Semi auto would be nice but probably more selection with bolt action. Defense and distance target shooting are my interests. Not so much hunting.

CWKahrFan
February 11, 2014, 02:10 PM
There are still some very nice SKS's available at a decent price but they'll soon cost nearly as much $ as AKs... If you go for one, shop around... don't settle for a beater.

Brian Pfleuger
February 11, 2014, 02:15 PM
I don't believe I've ever heard of any one using a bolt-action rifle for home defense, on purpose anyway.

Honestly, it strikes me that your goals are at odds with one another.

Cheap and long distance target don't usually go together very well, unless you don't particularly care how big your target has to be to hit it.

Sure, you can shoot 4 foot square plates at 1000 yards with a Mosin (maybe) but that doesn't really equate to "target" shooting for most folks. If you're talking about shooting small groups, you need a decent gun. Decent guns aren't usually "cheap" to the same degree as old/surplus military.

Jimro
February 11, 2014, 02:35 PM
I'm looking for an all purpose rifle, probably a military surplus one which will give the most bang for the buck! LOL. That is reasonably reliable, not pricey, ammo generally available etc. Thanks for your suggestions!

Semi auto would be nice but probably more selection with bolt action. Defense and distance target shooting are my interests. Not so much hunting.

I would like to know "what distance" and "what price range" as "bang for the buck" means I can recommend a more expensive rifle if it is worth the expense. But without that data, anything from a Win 94 to a muzzle loading musket meets your criteria as written.

Jimro

mapsjanhere
February 11, 2014, 06:03 PM
You can't beat the SKS for cheap, cheap and effective ammo and compact an light for defensive in surplus. Everything later is select fire and unaffordable. Get it now, and add a nice 308 bolt rifle later for that long distance target shooting.

tahunua001
February 11, 2014, 06:22 PM
well military surplus arms really don't make good all purpose rifles unless you cut them up in which case the second your blade touches the rifles they emit a pheromone which is only detected by VFW members, senior citizens and sentimental collectors which have spent enough time around them to develop a symbiotic relationship. at this point every member of the forementioned group will gather at your place and curb stomp you for destroying a priceless piece of history.


personally, if you are looking for a good multipurpose light weight semi a SKS is probably the best for you, the M1 is good but 30-06 is spendy, most hunting ammo is not M1 approved and it's a heavier rifle platform.

for bolt actions a good springfield 1903A3 is probably your best if you are keeping original, a russian mosin nagant if you are planning on modifying it in any way.

Bullet Bill
February 11, 2014, 06:30 PM
The Ruger Gunsite Scout makes a fairly good all purpose rifle but its $800.

guruatbol
February 11, 2014, 07:04 PM
The first rifle I bought a very long time ago was an SKS. I like that rifle and really don't care how many rounds get put through it and how fast they get put through it. It is after all for fun.

The second rifle I bought was a model 94 Winchester in .44 mag. I love that rifle and it is super easy to use for defense or in the brush.

I ran across a Chilean 7mm Mauser and man is that thing accurate! It handles very well and was only $200.

I have many more rifles I could discuss, they all have a purpose, but the first three I bought we the best investments I ever made. I really enjoy all of them, each for different reasons.

I hope this helps in some small way.

Mel

jmr40
February 11, 2014, 07:10 PM
I don't believe I've ever heard of any one using a bolt-action rifle for home defense, on purpose anyway.


Me neither, but in reality there is no reason not to. You see people recommend lever actions quite often and in reality a man who knows how to run a bolt rifle is for all practical purposes just as fast.

Many modern bolt guns are far lighter and more compact than any lever gun and offered with more options for short barrels. My 30-30 lever guns are the heaviest guns I own, out weighing my heaviest bolt rifle, a 300 WSM. Some of my 308 bolt rifles are as much as 2 lbs lighter than my lightest 30-30.

This was the intent of the Scout rifle concept. I strongly disagree with the forward scope mount, but there are any number of options that would work quite well.

My vote for best bang for the buck would be one of the Ruger American compact rifles with a 16" barrel in either 308 or 223 with a street price of $350 with a 1-4X20 scope on it.

http://ruger.com/products/americanRifleCompact/models.html

At 6 lbs it would be 1-1.5 lbs lighter than a lever gun, with a 4" shorter, more compact barrel. The scope on 1X is faster and more accurate than any iron sights and 4X is enough for reasonable distances.

Willie Lowman
February 11, 2014, 07:12 PM
I don't believe I've ever heard of any one using a bolt-action rifle for home defense, on purpose anyway.

My dad kept a 03-A3 for home defense.

ninjaamt
February 12, 2014, 08:42 AM
Thanks everyone for the comments! Its tough when you are on a budget, ammo is getting more difficult to get, and worse of all, when you live here in "New Jersey!". I like the M1, the 1903, and M14. Had a M1 carbine and two "Russian Remingtons. Like someone pointed out, " never sell any of your guns"! LOL

trg42wraglefragle
February 13, 2014, 11:17 PM
If you consider an AR15 milsurp, which it isn't but it is a military rifle, then without a doubt an AR gives the most features, most useability and most option to upgrade in the future.

Entirely depends on budget and what you are looking for.
If you want historical value, then a Lee Enfield, Springfield or K98 Mauser would suit you better. If cheap thrills is your thing, then a Mosin Nagant.
Cheap ammo for plinking would be a Mosin, SKS or an AK47/74.

I'm not sure what the price of ammo for 223 is now, but for an accurate, fun, nice and easy to shoot rifle, for a reasonable price and historical value not being important, then I'd say AR15.

Personally if I wanted a milsurp rifle, I'd want something with historical value, and something I would accept I had to reload for. I'd go for a Lee Enfield, or if I could find one a Swiss K31.

bamaranger
February 14, 2014, 03:51 AM
I'd rule out a mil-surp and go for one of the price point poly rifles....something like the Ruger American or a Savage Axis. On it I'd plant a Leupold fixed 4x, used.....and likely get it in .308.

Oh wait a minute.....home defense? As in down the hallway....end of the driveway sort of thing. For that I'd go with a used Marlin 30-30 with possibly a used 2-1/2x Leu. Maybe a Leu 1-4x variable. Not an ideal long range rig, but handier up close and faster repeats.

You're asking a lot from one rifle.

Jack O'Conner
February 14, 2014, 08:21 AM
Years ago, when I lived in Colorado I often hunted with a decorated Korean War veteran. His only rifle was a surplus Czech Mauser stamped 7.9mm. The barrel was approx. 24 inches in length. But it fired Winchester 8mm ammo quite well. The military sights had been professionally replaced with modern receiver sight and slim post. I've read that American ammo is loaded to lower pressure than European ammo but this made no difference to my friend. He toppled mulies and pronghorn antelope every year with this outfit. He told me that he killed at several elk as well. I've witnessed that when a 8mm soft tip bullet crashes through the chest organs, the animal topples quickly. Internal damage is quite ghastly. Frankly, its all about shooting a good bullet into the right spot.

For a bolt action surplus rifle, Czech Mausers are keepers.

Jack

BillM
February 14, 2014, 09:13 AM
SKS. Prices are coming back down a bit. Not the best accuracy, but
they are reliable and ammo is available. And they are a heck of a lot of fun.

For not much more than the price of the SKS you can get a bottom end
AR. Recently saw some with a polymer lower for $399. Hang an inexpensive
optic on it and you are still under $500.

In a bolt action the Mosin Nagant is probably the most bang for your buck.

If you don't care if it is 100% original, there are LOTS of "sporterized"
1903's, Enfields, 1917's, etc. out there for not much money.

CMP Garand. A piece of history and one heck of a rifle. Get one while you can.

Dirty_Harry
February 14, 2014, 10:48 AM
jmr40

Many modern bolt guns are far lighter and more compact than any lever gun and offered with more options for short barrels.

How can you even say this? Point out 5 bolt guns to me now.....GO!

I will agree with the fact that the bolt guns may be lighter, but not handier or shorter. You know how many variations of the guide gun marlin has made? Not to mention most any 30-30 or .35 carbine is much shorter than a factory bolt action.

I own a Ruger Gunsite scout, but both my Marlin in .450 and 35 are handier.

It would take years of practice with a bolt action to get it anywhere near as fast as a lever.

To the OP, ever consider a pump rifle? They arent for me, but are slick. A Remington 7615? Takes AR mags and is cheap to shoot.

http://www.remingtonsociety.com/journals/articles/M760N/rsa0407p31p1.jpg

Dirty_Harry
February 14, 2014, 10:55 AM
And pump rifles are faster than a lever, second to only the semi auto.

SR420
February 14, 2014, 02:44 PM
M14/M1A with an 18" barrel.

Erno86
February 14, 2014, 02:54 PM
I like my thin barreled scoped RPK --- in 7.62x39 --- and my scoped Romanian PSL --- in 7.62x54 --- with PSL translates into: scoped semi automatic rifle. The PSL is a beast --- though mild recoil --- that likes a firm hold...along with a trigger press that likes the bone just ahead of the first distal joint.

Use only 147 grain bullets in the PSL, and not the 174 grainer's, which might wear out the receiver. The PSL has a very rigorous right hand ejection of the spent shell --- which could put somebody's eye out --- so use a brass catcher if people are nearby. It likes 147 grain Sierra Matchkings.

Dirty_Harry
February 14, 2014, 03:05 PM
What SR420 said!

tahunua001
February 14, 2014, 04:08 PM
And pump rifles are faster than a lever, second to only the semi auto.
I believe that any brit who served in WWII or any person that witnessed them in action would disagree with you. the germans thought that the brits were being issued semis due to the rate of fire that they were able to possess with the proper training. without the proper training, a lever is just as slow as a bolt. to another point, rate of fire is meaningless unless you areable to put all of those shots on target. I could probably drop 5 rounds from a marlin 1895 in 5 seconds if I put my mind to it but I highly doubt many of them would hit what I was aiming at. at the same time I could fire 5 rounds from an AR15 or SKS in 5 seconds and probably still have trouble hitting but much higher precision than the lever.

as for handier, I know I can cover a heck of a lot more distance with a 30-06 than I can a 30-30, 45-70 or 44 mag.

mehavey
February 14, 2014, 04:14 PM
all purpose rifle...defense & distance
target shooting...most bang for the buck...

Barring a semi-auto/"assault" milsurplus caliber that I do not regard
as cannonically compatible with "distance" and (precision) target
shooting), I'd still get a used/sporterized `03 at a gunshow, or a
used Model-70.

30-06, of course.
(best fit "all purpose" cartridge -- arguably of all time)

~~~~~~~~~~

Dirty_Harry
February 14, 2014, 06:51 PM
Not trying to start an argument, but a pump in 223 I am willing to bet is still faster than an enfield

SIGSHR
February 14, 2014, 10:51 PM
Using a full sized centerfire rifle for home defense would make sense with a reduced power round. Years ago in American Rifleman I saw a picture of a box of reduced velocity guard cartridges issued years ago.
I would look at something more "modern", a sporterized milsurp, hard to tell if it was built by Joe Gunsmith or cobbled together by Bubba.

Justice06RR
February 14, 2014, 11:30 PM
Seeing you are in NJ, the SKS is a great option for you.

You can still buy them in the $300-400 range. 10rd internal box mag and no "Evil" features. I recommend a nice Chinese SKS if you can locate one. There are online dealers that sell them for $299 (Classic Firearms).

Ammo is relatively cheap at around $5/box of 20rds or $220/1k rds.

Bullet Bill
February 15, 2014, 12:21 AM
SIGSHR -

I don't really see a point in that when there is ammunition like the 110 gr Hornady Tap .308 which pretty much explodes on impact. I think a downloaded non expanding bullet would be more likely to over penetrate and impart less energy. If you are using a centerfire bolt gun you might as well benefit from the full energy potential.

kawasakifreak77
February 15, 2014, 11:02 AM
I started a thread here awhile back asking about the one rifle lifestyle. Probably half the responses were a .308 or .30-06 bolt gun with a nice scope.

Wyosmith
February 15, 2014, 12:09 PM
All around rifle?
That depends on what is around your all.

What is "best" in Florida would not be best in Montana.

Greguw
February 17, 2014, 12:16 PM
As other have said the cheapest ammo is 7.62x54r , its a actually a good round I was lucky to get ahead of the rush and had a AK that shot that round and have lots of cheap fun compared to my other calibers .
I think the last lead smelting plant in the US just closed , thats going to effect the price of lead in the US on top of having a hard time finding ammo on the shelf , now the fishing guys are going to drive up prices in the US ... They need Sinkers ...LOL
I all ways look at what other countries are using , looks to be tons of 5.45x39 military ammo , I have a AR and AK's in that round and is a fairly cheap round .
I feel the years of cheap fun are numbered no matter what rifle and caliber out side of .22 .
All the cheap ammo is from other countries , guns are going the way of the muscle car , you bring them out every once in the while and the cost $$$$ to fuel them up .

Colt46
February 17, 2014, 04:57 PM
But their sights may be lacking for what you want them for. Mounting a scope may require drilling into a piece of history.

An all around rifle is one that you can scope and is easy to shoot well.

The savage Axis is cheap and in something like .223 is accurate effective for small game and a great value.

True all around would mean stepping up to an all around caliber like .308 or .30-06

Regular Joe
February 18, 2014, 02:33 AM
There's NO SUCH thing as an AK that shoots 7.62x54R. A PSL or Dragunov, yes, but impossible in an AK.
For what you want, the SKS would be a whole lotta' fun. Ammo is still pretty cheap, and available in up to a 154 gr. soft point for deer sized game.
If it's the only rifle you have, it feels just fine for packing along on a day hike. It's powerful enough to offer viable defense against any lunatics who are likely to accost you, out in the sticks or at home. Accuracy is generally good for milk jug sized targets out to around 200 yards.
It's next to impossible to mount a scope, but iron sites are much more durable. If it's your only rifle, and that's what you always shoot, it will soon feel like it's just supposed to be that way.
Watch some youtube videos about people shooting the SKS. It's an easy rifle to fall in like with.

Unlicensed Dremel
March 11, 2014, 12:34 AM
I'm going to assume that "not pricey" means "under $500 used" before optics etc.

In that case, lotta options...

Rem 7400 pump. Pumps are arguably well fast enough for self-defense. Chambering of .223 rem or .243 win, maybe others

CZ 527 Carbine in .223 or 762x39. Or for that matter, any used bolt action with a short bbl (20") in a reasonably-small chambering - .223, .243 being good choices. Not as fast as a pump, but fast with practice.

SKS (762x39)

KelTec SU16 in 556x45

Marlin 336 in .30-30 win

WV_gunner
March 11, 2014, 09:21 PM
I'm going to suggest something no one else wil probably. A single shot. A NEF/H&R can be had for $150-$250 used. A 45-70 in hotter loads can do your long distance shooting easily. Defense won't be great with only one shot however, but with light loads it'll be a good round. Another great option would be a Rossi Circuit Judge. Great for home defense with .45 Colt. Long distance isn't going to happen well though.

Really, we need more information. Some people think 100 yards is distance shooting while others think 1000 yards is child's play.

BingoFuel
March 11, 2014, 11:12 PM
To the OP, it's quite an open-ended question and so with no context in which to provide an answer, it's a pot shot :)
But I recently purchased a Tikka T3 Lite chambered in .223 and am really enjoying it. Semi-autos (whether AR style or less tactical shapes) fill the need as an excellent defensive firearm, a great design for hunting in high-pressure situations (e.g. hogs perhaps). And I have quite a few of them. But they also tend to push me to shoot more quickly and more rounds than I otherwise need to.
The bolt action design brings me back to summer camp when I was a kid of age in single digits, shooting five rounds and then walking out to check my work, then being granted another five rounds by the 'range officer'.
Today, the Tikka bolt brings me back to those times, provides a very accurate and easily carried platform, shoots (relatively) low-cost ammo while still being practical for certain hunting needs - though I am not a hunter.
Best of all it motivates me to savor each shot, practicing my breathing, my sighting and my trigger work. Popping off one round and then a pause to regroup my thoughts. Very zen perhaps but it works for me.
I'm not sure this is the last gun I would hold on to if all but one had to go, but for sheer shooting pleasure it absolutely is.
B

Colt46
March 12, 2014, 08:48 AM
They tend to be heavy, have sights not set up for hunting or home defense, and are geared towards whatever military minds were in vogue that year.

There can be exceptions. The SKS is a pretty good platform, but you would need to modify it a bit.

Skadoosh
March 12, 2014, 09:19 AM
A decent lever action in 30-30 will fill the billet. And it likely that no legislature will go after it for a long while yet.

Wyosmith
March 12, 2014, 12:35 PM
"A decent lever action in 30-30 will fill the billet. And it likely that no legislature will go after it for a long while yet."

I do not believe this is true. In fact, I predict that if the military style rifles can be successfully outlawed that all firearms will follow within 3 years.

pathdoc
March 12, 2014, 05:51 PM
For roughness, toughness and doesn't-stop-working-until-after-everything-else-does, the .303 is a pretty good Milsurp to consider. The Mosin is probably pretty close, possibly just as good, in the abuse-proofness department, but the Lee-Enfield has that ten-shot magazine capacity going for it and a slicker action with a turned-down bolt handle. The only downside is that you have to be careful if you handload up the hot end of the scale; case life might be rather short unless you neck-size.

The speed record for the Lee-Enfield is 38 aimed shots in one minute, including reloading time, which probably puts the cyclic rate around sixty rounds a minute. One every second. That's as good as a semi-auto, and you can use reduced loads with light bullets that a semi won't swallow.

Unlicensed Dremel
March 12, 2014, 08:44 PM
Notwithstanding what I said above (to deviate from the semi-auto mandate), the best all-around rifle is without a doubt, of the turnbolt type (generally speaking); specifically a "scout" setup. In fact, that's the very definition of what a scout IS - the best all-around, jack-of-all-trades / master-of-none rifle. Although a lever or pump is not specifically ruled out by scout requirements, they really are as a practical matter due to weight (espec. leverguns).

There are many configs and variants. Can be any make, can have the scope mounted traditionally or forward, can have stripper clip cutouts or not; can have a 16-20" bbl, can be of any common chambering but 7mm-08, .308 win, or .338 federal preferred. It must have iron sights, preferably with a peep rear.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scout_rifle

The Ruger Frontier rifle comes pretty close.

and yeah, a milsurp can be a good option. I often kick myself for selling an Ishapore 2A SMLE that had been "jungle-fied" - cut to 17" and made to look like a No. 6 jungle carbine with the flared flash hider. Great all-purpose rifle and held 12+1 rounds of 762x51.

ninjaamt
March 13, 2014, 09:51 AM
So what's the better deal? The Russian Saiga or the Chinese SKS? The Saiga costs more but is it a lot better?

Unlicensed Dremel
March 13, 2014, 01:28 PM
Better for what? Better for using multiple magazines? Yes.

Unlicensed Dremel
March 18, 2014, 07:47 PM
Wow... I meant: "Better for using multiple magazines: Saiga" - not "yes".

Also, two other mistakes...
*No 5 (not No 6), and
*Rem 7600, not 7400 (though a semi-auto 7400 or 750 is yet another choice here)

Dirty_Harry
March 19, 2014, 08:00 PM
I dont get where you guys are calling leverguns heavy? Maybe the octagon barreled ones, but a stock Marlin 336 is the same weight as a Ruger GSR and has a longer barrel!

Please post facts next time to back up you statements.

bamaranger
March 22, 2014, 12:34 AM
Hey, I like levers, Ok, and have no axe to grind, but there really are useful, compact bolts that will rival a lever carbine.

A ways back somebody challenged for 5 compact bolts. Listed are 5 that will shoot with any lever in terms of accuracy and reach. Some will equal or exceed a lever in rate of fire/volume of fire, but such does not matter to me in a GP rife so much. All are way ahead of a pistol caliber carbine in terms of punch, and some eclipse the .30-30 and .35 . None require the the halfcock safety that so many seem to misunderstand these days, and none have a design spoiled by lawyer manual safeties. All are easily scoped. You don't have to jack all the rounds through the action to clear them either.

Here ya go:
-Rem 600-660
-Rem Model 7
-Ruger American Compact
-Zastava Mini-Mauser
-Mossberg MVP/Patrol series
-CZ bolt carbine (sorry, can't name model)
-Ruger Frontier
-Browning Micro

True, they aren't flat, and don't fit in a scabbard on a nag so well, but not many get around via hayburner these days. Again, I have nothing against levers, and if you check my first post, I actually suggested a lever .30 to the OP. For quite a while I had a M94 as a truck rifle, followed by a Marlin .357.
I like the breed, But the above bolts will run with the old carbines, for sure and shoot circles around them in some applications.

guruatbol
March 22, 2014, 12:51 PM
I would consider my 44 mag model 94 with a short barrel a good home defense weapon. I have had it loaded with XTP rounds before. I like other rounds too, but that type of round will work well in a defense role.

I have also loaded the rounds a bit light and then the recoil is almost nonexistent.

For any kind of home defense the rifle and even the handgun it ill suited IMHO. the best suited home defense gun is a shotgun. A shotgun with the correct load will make the most affective home defense weapon. No aiming required so in a real situation when you are not calm and shaking and other issues, you just point it and shoot!

A pump action is great because it is so simple! No skill involved!

Mel

mehavey
March 23, 2014, 12:50 PM
- delete -

mehavey
March 23, 2014, 12:52 PM
... best suited home defense gun is a shotgun.
A shotgun with the correct load will make the
most effective home defense weapon. No aiming
required This is the single most misunderstood myth about shotguns, and it can get one killed.

At room ranges of 10-12' feet across, shotguns are point impact weapons,
and do not produce patterns of any significance.

http://www.theboxotruth.com/images/20-4.jpg
http://www.theboxotruth.com/docs/bot20.htm

You must, repeat -- MUST -- aim a shotgun, no less than any long gun or any handgun.
And trying to swing a normal field shotgun w/ a 28" barrel inside a normal room is fraught
with...... "challenge." ;)

guruatbol
March 24, 2014, 09:35 PM
You must, repeat -- MUST -- aim a shotgun, no less than any long gun or any handgun.
And trying to swing a normal field shotgun w/ a 28" barrel inside a normal room is fraught
with...... "challenge."

Absolutely!

However, my instructing experience on the range with 18" barreled 870 shotguns loaded with 00 Buck at 10 yards spread nicely. You can also skip shoot off of cement or asphalt and get the advantage of picking up lots of additional shrapnel.

So, although your paper is proof enough, I have lots of experience with close quarter use of "riot" shotguns and they are very affective in close quarters, more so than our duty 38s or H&K model 94s or Mini 14s.

The shotgun is an indesciminent weapon for sure. Sorry I can't spell.

I also liked the 9mm glaser round we used for a while. I saw it injure 6 bystanders once when it bounced off of a table.

I have seen shotguns take out people at very close range being used from the combat position. (Held in the arm pit between the arm and side.)

IMHO!

Mel

mehavey
March 25, 2014, 07:18 PM
I got my daughter an Ithaca-37 police/riot shotgun back in the early 90's
when she was at the Univ of Florida/Gainesville and the serial murders were
in full swing. Somehow I'd gotten the gun back for temp keeping some
years ago as she was moving PCS w/ her husband.

Several months ago she got it back, and I took her husband out with it to
the local range. We set a large cardboard wardrobe box up at 10-12 feet
using double-ought buck.... He wanted to calibrate both himself and the
weapon.

One hole. Maybe 4 inches in diameter and easily producing the most
horrifically possible human wound imaginable....

But one hole.





(He was impressed in what that meant in terms of still having to
maintain absolute sight concentration -- short-barreled "shot"gun or not )

PHEASANTPETE
March 26, 2014, 10:03 PM
You said you wanted a rifle for target shooting at long range and defense. Are they linked or are you talking about home defense as well? What is your budget? Have you considered more than one weapon?

vorgath
March 28, 2014, 10:36 PM
Buy a Mosin, still cheap. Reloadable ammo is affordable as well. And you can modify it all you want. Improve it for target shooting.

Point is, it "can" be used for home defense ... I got mine in the kitchen, bolt open, with an open box of ammo on the spice rack lol.

But also, it's cheap, and you can now also afford a shotgun for just home defense.


Which is my next weapon, my wife to be told me she's buying me a shotgun after our wedding, due to the fact that my birthday us two days before our wedding (no way I'll ever forget our anniversary lol add two days to my birthday)

Of course we also have two handguns in the bedroom

kraigwy
March 29, 2014, 08:46 AM
I'm looking for an all purpose rifle, probably a military surplus one which will give the most bang for the buck! LOL. That is reasonably reliable, not pricey, ammo generally available etc

All Purpose: To me that means hunting, defense, competition (3-gun to High Power (200-1000) yards. M1 Garand

Most Bang for the Buck: $625 from the CMP M1 Garand

Probably a military Surplus: M1 Garand

Reasonably reliable (make the extremely reliable) M1 Garand

Not Pricey, ammo available. 200 Rounds for $118 from the CMP M1 Garand

Lets add Accuracy. Service Grand capable of 3 moa with irons. Positive clicks (1 MOA) to 1200 yards, sighting system easy to use. M1 Garand

Hunting, capable of taking any game in NA, 100 to 220 gr. bullets M1 Garand

Parts availability (Thought I've been shooting mine for over 30 years and haven't broke anything). Parts are available from the CMP, Gun parts Inc. and hundreds of other places across the country. M1 Garand

I don't believe in an all around do everything rifle, but the M1 Garand comes closer then anything I can think of.

boltomatic
April 9, 2014, 08:35 PM
I was looking for the same type of gun as you, went with a new Ruger Mini-Thirty Tactical Rifle, and could not be happier!

Its short (about 37"), light, no protruding pieces like an AR-15, accurate, and fires a cheap but powerful round (7.62x39). And it only cost about $800. Also, its about as reliable as an AK and is very easy to clean. I clean my guns every time I shoot them, but my father has the same gun and has put about 1000 rounds of russian steel through his without a cleaning and has yet to have any problems.

Its really the perfect gun. The ammo is the cheapest centerfire rifle ammo you can find so you can afford to shoot it, and they make higher quality ammo for hunting or self defense.

Accuracy is more than enough. I shoot about 2 MOA with cheap russian steel ammo, that means at 300 yards you're still putting rounds in a 6 inch circle. Considering most medium game (people included) are shot under 150 yards, this gun is great for hunting, self defense, and of course SHTF scenarios. Where I live, its rare to have a sightline over 200 yards anyway.

Another bonus is, unlike the AR, its unlikely to be banned anytime in the near future. For me that was an issue since I live in a state where AR's are already restricted to some degree.

The only complaint I have about the mini is that the factory magazines are expensive and aftermarket magazines are pretty bad.

If Ruger made a mini in .300 blackout, it might just be the perfect gun (assuming you can find the ammo for it!).

ninjaamt
April 9, 2014, 08:41 PM
All good suggestions, and I did get a Ruger mini14 in 223 Rem! Love it

guruatbol
April 9, 2014, 08:46 PM
One of our duty weapons was the Mini-14 which fires 223. I have seen literally 10s of thousands of rounds put through them in six week cycles and only cleaned at the end of a cycle.

I have an SKS that fires the 7.62x39 round and it is a great weapon and when I got it I paid $150 for it. I want a mini 30 very bad. Just wish I had bought one from our Rugar rep when they were less expensive.

I really like all my rifles, but a Mini would be a nice add. I have become very partial to lever guns lately. Not very likely to be banned and though they are not as fast as a semi auto, they are fast enough.

You should really only fire when you have a good sight picture anyway and I can crank another round in it and acquire a new sight picture almost as fast and I can with the semi autos.

Really the only point I wanted to make is I really like the Mini 30 and 14.

Mel

eldermike
April 9, 2014, 08:56 PM
Savage over/under model 24. 30-06 20 gage.

BingoFuel
May 1, 2014, 01:41 AM
Seems to me that to qualify the rifle would have to be able to:
Be carried by a wide range of carriers some distance
Be effective in shooting animals (4-legged) for nourishment and (2-legged for turning the odds and winning a battle) as well as roughing up their vehicles of all types.
A simple loading technique with a reasonably high capacity so that you can stay in the game longer (that is, removable mags)
THe ability to load (loading done by someone else)in parallel with shooting to stay in the fight continuously
A round that can take down large animals and can penetrate barriers before hitting it's target (within reason)
A round that can be shot from a mid-priced gun that can be tuned for reasonable accuracy and be altered for a surpressor.
To me, this leaves the .308 front and center with it's ballistic friends 30-30 and 300 win mag as alternatives. My favorites, the 335 lapua mag and the 300 RUM just skew too much to high power uses to be broadly acceptable just as .223/5.56 skews low.
I'd pick an FNH FNAR as a gun that appears a 'tweener' caught between military and police rifles and modern hunting rifles. Safer looking in a crowd than an M4 - depending who carries it. Or it's shooting grandfather the Browning BAR which would be offputting to very few.
B

tdoyka
May 1, 2014, 10:55 AM
buy yourself a tc encore and then choose the barrel and length!!!:D

http://matchgrademachine.com/Chamberings-Available.html

http://i66.photobucket.com/albums/h273/tdoyka/52ca449d-643e-4560-8cf7-e3cd903a24bd_zps3ac97918.jpg (http://s66.photobucket.com/user/tdoyka/media/52ca449d-643e-4560-8cf7-e3cd903a24bd_zps3ac97918.jpg.html)

chadio
May 1, 2014, 10:59 AM
All good suggestions, and I did get a Ruger mini14 in 223 Rem! Love it

Congrats ninjaamt - enjoy the rifle!!

kraigwy - you have a very convincing sales pitch for the M1 Garand , it really puts things in perspective :cool: "nicely done".... I just wouldn't consider 60 cents per round to be very affordable if one does a lot of shooting.

jmstr
May 1, 2014, 12:55 PM
Mini-14 is fun.

Have one. Unfortunately, it took 2 trips back to Ruger to resolve some jamming issues [when new].

Still like it a lot.

Another thought: SAIGA .308/7.62 Nato.

Also fun. Don't know if it is banned in New Jersey though. I have 10 round mags for mine as I'm in another socialist state: California.

Just a thought.

Dirty_Harry
May 2, 2014, 02:11 PM
5 compact bolts
Hey, I like levers, Ok, and have no axe to grind, but there really are useful, compact bolts that will rival a lever carbine.

A ways back somebody challenged for 5 compact bolts. Listed are 5 that will shoot with any lever in terms of accuracy and reach. Some will equal or exceed a lever in rate of fire/volume of fire, but such does not matter to me in a GP rife so much. All are way ahead of a pistol caliber carbine in terms of punch, and some eclipse the .30-30 and .35 . None require the the halfcock safety that so many seem to misunderstand these days, and none have a design spoiled by lawyer manual safeties. All are easily scoped. You don't have to jack all the rounds through the action to clear them either.

Here ya go:
-Rem 600-660
-Rem Model 7
-Ruger American Compact
-Zastava Mini-Mauser
-Mossberg MVP/Patrol series
-CZ bolt carbine (sorry, can't name model)
-Ruger Frontier
-Browning Micro

True, they aren't flat, and don't fit in a scabbard on a nag so well, but not many get around via hayburner these days. Again, I have nothing against levers, and if you check my first post, I actually suggested a lever .30 to the OP. For quite a while I had a M94 as a truck rifle, followed by a Marlin .357.
I like the breed, But the above bolts will run with the old carbines, for sure and shoot circles around them in some applications.

My post was mostly directed elsewhere. Never said you didnt like levers. :p

I appreciate you actually showing some Bolt guns that are lighter than the Levers. Most on that list, save the ruger and mossberg MVP, are either discontinued or very hard to find.

WildBill45
May 2, 2014, 07:59 PM
O3A3, custom stock, stock peep sights... Period.

A pause for the COZ
May 3, 2014, 05:36 AM
Mosin Nagant
I am partial to the Carbines but have one 91-30 also.
Ammo is cheap plus you can reload for them
I shoot mostly cast bullets out of mine.
Bad part????
Well once you have one you most likely will have two or three or four.

http://i33.photobucket.com/albums/d66/Kelly2215/100_9207_zps1651637a.jpg

Jack O'Conner
May 3, 2014, 06:36 AM
SKS carbines are fun to shoot and easy to maintain.

Jack

Valornor
May 3, 2014, 11:47 AM
For all around balance of affordability, serviceability and just plain old fun to shoot, the Mosin's are really hard to beat. 7.62x54r is plenty to take down just about anything you are going to hunt in North America. Ammo is easy to find and the gun is built so simply that any one with fingers could service it.

I've done some reloads with 150gr cast bullets sitting on 11.5gr of unique that were mouse fart loads and they shot very well. For a beginning shooter it would be like shooting .22lr.

Art Eatman
May 3, 2014, 08:02 PM
Since the OP is now the proud owner of a Mini, we can now wait for the next question. :)