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Old July 10, 2018, 09:39 PM   #1
brybet76
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.308 deer semi auto

I hunted when I was a kid, but haven't since I was in my teens. I used my dad's rifle so I don't know much. I have found very little in regards to .308 deer semi auto. I live in NJ so the laws are very strict. This is what I am looking for and why:

.308 caliber, it is a common round that will take down deer and if come a across it a black bear

reliable/durable, I am not a prepper but knowing that I have a tool in my hand just in case it really goes all to crap will help me sleep better, I am also clumsy, and at times will hunt in the very cold

I have come across the BAR but from what I have read the durability is poor, and reliability is hit or miss, some guys have "had one forever" without issues, others have had constant issues. I also came across a Remington AR style one, for which I have found very little written about, and nearly all of it has been negative. And Benelli makes a semi .308...sold only in Europe.

Does anyone know of a current or past production that fits what I am looking for? Thanks
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Old July 10, 2018, 10:03 PM   #2
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The simple thing is to get whatever the sanitized version of an AR10/derivatives are in your state, in .308 of course.

Even if it's got a non threaded barrel, solid stock, something goofy with the mag, etc.. etc.. if you get one that is basically standard otherwise it ought to be both reliable and easily maintainable.

I do not know squat about deer hunting but I think if I was going to tromp through the woods for hours, with no other consideration other than stalking a deer, I'd rather have a lighter bolt action rifle - but as far as semi auto goes the simple thing would seem to be any off the shelf AR10/derivative, but of course one that is legal in the given state you are in.
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Old July 10, 2018, 10:17 PM   #3
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Yeah I'd have to agree with riffraff. The AR-10 style rifles would be the best ones.
Some of the offerings of today are not "tank heavy" either like the "10s" of a few years back.
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Old July 10, 2018, 11:31 PM   #4
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FNAR

Look into an FNAR. A little expensive, based on the BAR action. Only main issue is disassembly is involved. But it is an accurate shooter and can handle 5 - 20 rounds mags. Mags are not cheap. Run 50 to 65 a mag but you can get them.

Dan...
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Old July 11, 2018, 12:42 AM   #5
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Does anyone know of a current or past production that fits what I am looking for? Thanks
Take a look at the Remington 740/742/7400 series of rifles. First introduced in the 1950s, they can be found in a wide variety of calibers, in a couple different "grades" and there was a carbine version as well.

They are not, and were never intended as military rifles. They have no where near the durability of military designs. They are not built to take thousands upon thousands of rounds, nor function under severely abusive conditions.

They are sporting rifles, NOT sporting versions of military rifles. Accept that, and you have a centerfire semi auto, capacity of 4-5rounds in most calibers, caliber choices ranging from .243 to .35 though some calibers are rare. >30-06 is common, .308 a bit less so. Accuracy is acceptable for hunting, some individual rifles are much more accurate than others.

The primary advantages to a semi auto hunting rifle are reduced felt recoil (both from the gas action, and the weight of the gun, semis being generally heavier than manual repeaters) and the fact that the sound of the action reloading the chamber is blended into the sound of the shot, making it less likely to spook game.

Remington also marketed a pump action (760 series) essentially the same rifle as the semi, but with a pump action.

You can often find good quality examples of these rifles, maybe with finish wear from being carried a lot, but very seldom shot a lot, on the used rifle racks. Prices will usually be less than anything made on an AR pattern system.

May not fit your wants, but they're work checking out to see.

And, then there are the really old guns, the Remington models 8 and 81. Pre WWII production (so no .308 win) but they can be found in .300 Savage and other suitable deer calibers. These guns are becoming collector's pieces now, but you might still find one on a used rack, cheap in some small shop somewhere...
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Old July 11, 2018, 06:37 AM   #6
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I do the vast majority of my deer hunting with an AR-10 style rifle. Handy size, accurate, reliable, durable it does everything I need it to do. With a 3X magnifier it is plenty accurate to 300 yards.
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Old July 11, 2018, 08:44 AM   #7
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I carried a .308 AR10 for hunting a lot of years. Until I picked up a friends 6.8 AR15. I knew immediately that AR10 would become a safe queen. Light weight with 80% of the power of the .308, changed my mind. But there more than just the 6.8 calibre that makes a good deer round in a AR15. And they'll work for black bear as well.
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Old July 11, 2018, 09:18 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by 44 AMP View Post
Take a look at the Remington 740/742/7400 series of rifles. First introduced in the 1950s, they can be found in a wide variety of calibers, in a couple different "grades" and there was a carbine version as well.

They are not, and were never intended as military rifles. They have no where near the durability of military designs. They are not built to take thousands upon thousands of rounds, nor function under severely abusive conditions.

They are sporting rifles, NOT sporting versions of military rifles. Accept that, and you have a centerfire semi auto, capacity of 4-5rounds in most calibers, caliber choices ranging from .243 to .35 though some calibers are rare. >30-06 is common, .308 a bit less so. Accuracy is acceptable for hunting, some individual rifles are much more accurate than others.

The primary advantages to a semi auto hunting rifle are reduced felt recoil (both from the gas action, and the weight of the gun, semis being generally heavier than manual repeaters) and the fact that the sound of the action reloading the chamber is blended into the sound of the shot, making it less likely to spook game.

Remington also marketed a pump action (760 series) essentially the same rifle as the semi, but with a pump action.

You can often find good quality examples of these rifles, maybe with finish wear from being carried a lot, but very seldom shot a lot, on the used rifle racks. Prices will usually be less than anything made on an AR pattern system.

May not fit your wants, but they're work checking out to see.

And, then there are the really old guns, the Remington models 8 and 81. Pre WWII production (so no .308 win) but they can be found in .300 Savage and other suitable deer calibers. These guns are becoming collector's pieces now, but you might still find one on a used rack, cheap in some small shop somewhere...
Do you happen to live in a dry environment? Being in North Carolina, these rifles are called Jam'o-Matics or Jam-Masters depending if you have the 7400 or 742. But I often hear a lot of people from the Midwest love the rifles and never run into many problems with them. Around here they are shunned (I assumed because the moist environment pits the apparently low chrome content chambers.) On the other hand, the BARS hold up really well.

Just a pro-tip if you ever are buying a 742 or 7400 online; stay away from the ones selling out of North Carolina especially if they are long action cartridges.
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Old July 11, 2018, 10:42 AM   #9
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Take a look at the Remington 740/742/7400 series of rifles. First introduced in the 1950s, they can be found in a wide variety of calibers, in a couple different "grades" and there was a carbine version as well.
If he is already concerned about the reliability of a BAR then he'd be horrified at the reliability (or lack thereof) in a Remington.

To the OP, why do you think you need an automatic? The vast majority of whitetail hunters use a bolt-action. MUCH more reliable and generally more accurate.
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Old July 11, 2018, 11:27 AM   #10
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You only think you want a semi-auto. There are very good reasons why almost no one chooses to hunt with one anymore. They had a small following 40 years ago, but people have learned.

For about the same money you can buy TWO bolt rifles and put decent scopes on them and have a better rifle.
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Old July 11, 2018, 02:33 PM   #11
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I am also curious as to why you would like a semi auto rifle in 308? The caliber makes sense, the semi-auto, not so much.

In answer to your request, though, there are several that you can look into: PTR91(or one of the other clones of the HK91, unless you really wanna spend the dough on a true HK91 somewhere in the realm of $3k+ last I checked), M1A, FAL, AR10, M1 Garand (Almost all M1's are 30-06 so you could either modify your caliber requirement as it's borderline identical in application or they did convert many M1s to shoot 308). There is also the RFB from Kel-Tech, though it's pricey and I've read several great reviews and a few not so great. The problem with almost all of these is that I'm going to wager almost all of them will have some regulation in NJ, with the M1 Garand being the most likely of them to be allowed.

What we could use is some clarification as to why the semi-auto request. After that, we don't live in NJ, and though I know a lot about NY's laws regarding the regulation of semi-auto, pistol gripped rifles, I am not familiar with NJ's, so a little help there would definitely be great. You might specify on some of your requirements as well: mag size, weight (as an old, heavy rifle might be durable, but you're gonna lug a lot of weight around, a la M91/30), ease of use/modification.
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Old July 11, 2018, 03:05 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by PlatinumCore16 View Post
I am also curious as to why you would like a semi auto rifle in 308? The caliber makes sense, the semi-auto, not so much.

In answer to your request, though, there are several that you can look into: PTR91(or one of the other clones of the HK91, unless you really wanna spend the dough on a true HK91 somewhere in the realm of $3k+ last I checked), M1A, FAL, AR10, M1 Garand (Almost all M1's are 30-06 so you could either modify your caliber requirement as it's borderline identical in application or they did convert many M1s to shoot 308). There is also the RFB from Kel-Tech, though it's pricey and I've read several great reviews and a few not so great. The problem with almost all of these is that I'm going to wager almost all of them will have some regulation in NJ, with the M1 Garand being the most likely of them to be allowed.

What we could use is some clarification as to why the semi-auto request. After that, we don't live in NJ, and though I know a lot about NY's laws regarding the regulation of semi-auto, pistol gripped rifles, I am not familiar with NJ's, so a little help there would definitely be great. You might specify on some of your requirements as well: mag size, weight (as an old, heavy rifle might be durable, but you're gonna lug a lot of weight around, a la M91/30), ease of use/modification.
Maybe he needs semi-auto for "...I am not a prepper but knowing that I have a tool in my hand just in case it really goes all to crap will help me sleep better..." He may be hunting people later when things get bad.

I wouldn't be afraid to call myself a prepper if I were you brybet76. I'm not a prepper either...maybe.
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Old July 11, 2018, 05:37 PM   #13
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How about "I like em and don't really care what you think?"

Of all people, check this out at Brownells: https://www.brownells.com/firearms/r...ntent=Preorder
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Old July 11, 2018, 10:06 PM   #14
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MY first "deer" rifle was a Remington semi auto in 30-06. One season and it was gone. It was one heavy hunk of iron to carry all day. I was young and would like to think relatively fit. Firepower is a poor trade off for the added weight. No real need for thirty caliber either. That is another part of the story. The 6.5 and 7mm more the sweet spot. If you are serious about bear, which I doubt, that is all about marksmanship and penetration. Some use a tree stand with bait or with dogs. Either with their own preferred guns. Then I dont know how bear hunting is regulated in RI.

Kimber, Tikka even Ruger offer appropriate models.

Take that for what is is worth. Forget the semi.
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Old July 12, 2018, 12:25 AM   #15
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I went down this road too. After looking into it, I was drawn to the Winchester model 100 in 308 Winchester, of course. Plus, I am definitely favorably to the Winchester brand; so I go to a gunshow and find one that looks good for $300. I was thrilled to get it and bought 3 or 4 boxes of ammo to get me started. Awesome!!! When it came time to shoot it and sight in, it looked OK on paper; but I had multiple malfunctions on every magazine of ammo. At best, I could sometimes get two shots in a row to work, but never three. Failure to extract; failure to feed; failure to eject, etc. Wow! I was super- dis-illusioned. I wanted my money back. The dealer was adamant that he would not give me a refund. To his credit, he took the rifle back to send it to his gunsmith, who replaced the extractor and reamed out the gas-tube. I got the gun back and it ran fine as I put another 40 rounds through it. It was by then a pretty good gun, but, darn it, it had lost its charm completely. Luckily, I ran into another shooter who heard my story and said he had a friend who would be interested in it. I sold it to the guy for a little more than I paid for it, just enough to cover my ammo and troubles, so I neither made nor lost any money for my experiences. The buyer got a much better rifle than I bought; perhaps I should have kept it, but hey, it lost its charm.
To brybet76, let me mention a few things:
1. You mentioned that you are clumsy; you didn't have to say that, but maybe that's important enough that you did. So I'm going to recommend against a semi-auto. Besides, if you get invited to hunt in neighboring Pennsylvania, semi-autos will not be allowed. You could go with a pump action, but I will recommend either a bolt-action or a lever-action.
2. Your preference for the 308 Winchester cannot be faulted. It's available everywhere and good hunting ammo costs the same as the other most popular centerfires, namely, 243, 270, and 30-'06. There are plenty of bolt actions in 308, lever-actions less available, but they are out there and there are good ones, like the Browning BLR, Savage 99, etc. But there are many millions of Winchester and Marlin 30-30 rifles that have been killing Deer and Black Bear, just as dead as any 308 will do. 30-30 ammo is actually cheaper than 308, and it's availability is second to none. It is the most under-rated centerfire caliber I can think of. So try not to rule it out.
3. If you are recoil sensitive, the 243 is a proven deer caliber, available everywhere, etc.
My preference for a bolt-action is 270 Winchester, and I'll have it in a model 70 Winchester, thank you. Second choice for me would be 30-'06, but hey, 308 will do. Honestly though, I'm having a lot more play time with a 1940's vintage Winchester 30-30. The only semi-autos I use now are 22 rimfires.
I don't have any muzzle-loaders, but I am certain I will go that way rather than have anything tactical.
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Old July 12, 2018, 06:42 AM   #16
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IMHO
Much of the problems with the Remington 740-7400 series originated in the way they were maintained. Riding around in the back window gun rack collecting a bunch of dust followed by 3-4 "mag dumps" at fleeing deer will tend to wear parts. If some parts are softer than others, the wear is concentrated. "Some folks" from the South(and other locations as well)who hauled their 742's around uncovered and exposed to the abrasive dust which filled the receiver ended up with worn parts inside the upper receiver area.
I used 742's for many years and never had any problem but then, I didn't leave them in the pickup rack all year, either.
Now to address the question about an AR 10 in .308.
I find the platform heavy and bulky as a hunting rifle. It does have the advantage of using higher capacity magazines (where legal) giving that option should repelling boarders become a requirement.
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Old July 12, 2018, 07:06 AM   #17
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My experience with a 742 was that it shot itself to pieces after a couple of hundred rounds. It was also near impossible to fix because parts were not available. I didn't spend much on the gun and it was during the ban years when an AR-10 style rifle was going for $1500+ on average and a 742 was around $350. These days a good NIB AR-10 style rifle is well under $900 and a NIB 7400 rifle is around $500. It makes a bit more economic sense to get the AR10.

Need AR-10 parts? They are everywhere.
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Old July 12, 2018, 08:45 AM   #18
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If you are sitting in a stand a 10 lb. AR-10 type rifle may be fine. Some will say only a pound or two heavier than bolt action, no big deal. I personally would not want to hump one up a mountain or carry one through the woods all day still hunting, just too heavy for my liking...

I would much prefer a 6-1/2 lb. bolt action rifle chambered in .243( with the right bullets of course), .257, .270 or .280. I'm a fan of .30 caliber but it isn't magic...
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Old July 12, 2018, 07:27 PM   #19
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I must have owned the only 4 good 742's ever made.
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Old July 13, 2018, 07:06 AM   #20
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Does anyone know of a current or past production that fits what I am looking for?
Get an M1 Garand in .308/7.62, or find one in 30.06 that's got a shot-out or frosted barrel and have it re-barrel with a Criterion .308 barrel.

Over the winter I did just that with a Garand I 'rescued' from the oblivion of an apathetic owner.

It had the classic 'tomato-stake' barrel with internal pitting and frosting, along with a worn and dinged crown. Muzzle erosion gauged like 6+. Re-barreled it with a .308 Criterion tube ($200) and then replaced about 3 or 4 worn/out-of-spec parts with in-spec parts from CMP. The old beat-to-crap G.I. stock & handguards were removed, tossed into storage, and replaced with some new Minnelli M1 wood Brownells had on sale. BLO-ed those for a bit before putting everything together. Greased it up, attached a sling, and headed to the range.

It's digested about 400-rds now, and what a shooter this thing is too! It's almost too pretty to be a 'truck' (or 'trunk') gun, but I keep it in my ride anyway along with a couple of bandoliers of 8-rd clips loaded with 7.62 surplus ball.

The M1 is still legal even in the most Commie-fied jurisdictions, and when hunting (where autoloaders are allowed) you can use 5-rd clips.

Save the 8-rd clips for Match competitions, general range use, 'Get off my lawn!' situations (home or property defense), or whatever your favorite SHTF scenario happens to be currently.

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Old July 13, 2018, 07:49 AM   #21
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PSA PA10 upper and lower--along with their EPT trigger. About $550. Perfectly serviceable for woods carry and is quite handy for standing offhand shots, maybe a tad weighty at 9 lbs. The reddot is an absolute cowitness with the front post. I don't worry about bashing it around either.

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Old July 13, 2018, 09:12 AM   #22
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PSA PA10 upper and lower--along with their EPT trigger. About $550. Perfectly serviceable for woods carry
Not in the OP's anti-2A state of NJ.
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Old July 13, 2018, 09:30 AM   #23
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Springfield M-1A A bit heavier than a standard deer rifle but it’s just as accurate (when you turn the gas valve to off) as a bolt action. You can get a 5 round mag that fits flush to the wood, or a 10 or 20 round mag. It is the civilian version of the M-14 and as such it is still used in the military as a sniper rifle for shots out past 1,000 yards. It comes in shorter SOCOM models or all the way to the White Feather (I think that’s that models name) that got that name from a sniper in Vietnam that was very good at it. It has good iron sights and there is a way to easily mount a scope. It can have a standard wood stock or any one of a dozen or so aftermarket stock. Lastly, it shoots the .308/7.62x51 NATO round that has had more science applied to it than any other round in the world. From what you described, this is the Gun you want. Happy shooting.
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Old July 13, 2018, 10:30 AM   #24
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Not in the OP's anti-2A state of NJ.
Oh God--forgot about that Get a slingshot and spear and be done with it.
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Old July 13, 2018, 12:21 PM   #25
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There's this:

https://www.basspro.com/shop/en/brow...emi-auto-rifle

http://www.browning.com/products/fir...-magazine.html
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