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Old February 14, 2013, 07:18 PM   #1
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.308 ammo too expensive

I made plenty of research and decided to purchase a used Savage Arms Model 10 with heavy barrel chambered in .308 cal., with accutrigger and Burris scope. I am very happy with the rifle, specially because the price was a real bargain. It is accurate and works flawlessly. The only thing I failed to verify before making the investment was the cost of ammo and how it would limit my ability to practice on a regular basis at the range. Twenty rounds sell, when available, for $39.00 at most LGSs. This is too expensive and kind of disappointing... I am seriously considering trading it for a military surplus rifle like the German Mauser K98, a Swiss K31 or even a Mosin Nagant M39... The ammo for any of these proven military style rifles is cheaper and readily available. I have considered reloading, but I have not made my mind yet. Any suggestions?
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Old February 14, 2013, 07:25 PM   #2
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Which model 10 did you get? I'm still saving my pennies for my next gun and I'm still liking the Savage Precision Carbine.

I was @ Dicks Sporting Goods yesterday and they had Fusion ammo in .308 for about $27 a box.
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Old February 14, 2013, 07:33 PM   #3
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Its an older model 10... it looks like the one on this link but without the detachable box magazine. Mine is all black.
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Old February 14, 2013, 07:42 PM   #4
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$2/round sounds pretty high - have you been paying that at your LGS for a while, or is it just "panic pricing"?

Midway seems to have a lot of name-brand stuff in that caliber in the $20-30 per 20 range. Of course, it's all out of stock now, but that's a temporary issue.
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Old February 14, 2013, 07:49 PM   #5
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ammo price!!

Must be you are buying premium ammo. Buy a reloading kit for a few hundred and if you shoot at least once a weak it will pay for itself in a years time. Not to mention ammo tailored to your gun.
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Old February 14, 2013, 07:58 PM   #6
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Ok. Now I'm just drooling regardless of the prices you are seeing on ammo. Though I do want one with the threaded barrel.
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Old February 14, 2013, 07:58 PM   #7
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You should reload...

Before I started I only shot Federal Gold Medal Match out of my .308. For the most part it held 5 shot groups at .75 MOA out to 400 yards.... And I only paid $20/20 rounds. That is actually the common going price when you can find it in stock. Don't go paying $2/round to shoot your gun (especially if it isn't match ammo). Either reload, or wait a little for ammo to stay on the shelves...
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Old February 14, 2013, 09:09 PM   #8
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Reload. Reload. Reload.
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Old February 14, 2013, 09:30 PM   #9
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That is the price you will pay for good ammo. I don't see the point in shooting cheap, inaccurate ammo in a target rifle.

In the long run you really need to reload. I can load REALLY accurate loads, using match bullets for around $8-$12 for 20 rounds. It will be made just for your rifle, be more accurate and you can probably get 50-100 fps more velocty than factory ammo.

Even with reloading I still shoot a target grade 22 with good ammo a lot more often, and for a lot less.
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Old February 14, 2013, 10:03 PM   #10
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Just as others have said, reload! If you intend to shoot often you will either need deep pockets (money), or reloading equipment.
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Old February 14, 2013, 10:12 PM   #11
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I think you can take a way the ".308" part and just say "ammo is too expensive
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Old February 14, 2013, 10:56 PM   #12
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Why did you buy the rifle?
If you wanted target grade accuracy you should have expected premium ammunition would be expensive.

If you don't care as much about accuracy, a surplus rifle in a caliber that hasn't dried up MAY be cheaper, till that stuff does dry up.

In the long run, shooting any centerfire rifle with factory loads is going to be expensive, to some degree, sooner or later.

You can go with a cheap gun & hope surplus ammunition holds up, along with typically fair to mediocre accuracy, or you can stay with what you have and learn to reload for it, as others have suggested.
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Old February 15, 2013, 02:19 AM   #13
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Reload is the only way to go. If you can find one of the old Lee Loaders and a bullet puller you can convert MILSUP into what is known as Camp Perry Match.

You simply pull the bullet and replace it with a quality slug. The Lee Loaders, if you can find them should run around 50 bucks.
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Old February 15, 2013, 06:21 AM   #14
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You really should probably just dump that rifle that has such expensive tastes.

Seriously, you should decide to reload, if you can. Find a less expensive place than the LGS to buy your ammo, then reload that brass.

If you decide that doesn't work for you and it has a threaded barrel, shoot me a pm.
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Old February 15, 2013, 07:34 AM   #15
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Quality .308 runs about $.90 - $1.20 / round if you buy it in case quantity (200 rounds). I've seen it as low as $.79 / round for military ammunition. One of the problems I've found in less expensive ammunition is the concentricity is awful, with it varying as much as 0.009" between rounds - that greatly degrades the accuracy. What that translates into is taking a 0.5 MOA rifle and making it into a 1.5 MOA rifle - just based on the concentricity variabilty from round-to-round.

So, you'll have to decide if you want to spend the money for quality factory ammunition, reload, or change calibers. Your choice.
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Old February 15, 2013, 07:39 AM   #16
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Unless the panic subsides, cheap surplus ammo is a thing of the past. Reload.
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Old February 15, 2013, 07:49 AM   #17
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Reloading isn't an option available to all...

If this is the case for you, search locally and online for cheaper ammo. Buy a couple of boxes of each until you find a couple that work well in your rifle--then buy what you can as you can while trying to buy from the same lot of ammo. Contrary to what nearly everyone here seems to believe your part of each shot still matters quite a lot (vs. the ammo).

The rifle's a good one; don't switch rifles just due to ammo pricing, which is bound to change in a year's time (who knows what will be cheap and what will be pricey then?).

I know more than a few folks who are surprised at the cost of (insert milsurp ammo caliber here) because "they just knew it'd always be dirt cheap." We don't "know" what milk will cost tomorrow; we can take educated/experience-based guesses, but we don't "know".

Ditto for reloading components folks.
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Last edited by longlane; February 15, 2013 at 07:50 AM. Reason: inserted "nearly"
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Old February 15, 2013, 09:46 AM   #18
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Walmart sells Federal 150 grain Power Shok .308 ammo for less than $15.00 / box of 20. This is good ammo that shoots well in my 308 AR.

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Old February 15, 2013, 09:58 AM   #19
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Wow, I just did a search on Midway and Cabela's and did not know it was that bad.

Reloading is an option but getting supplies right now is tough. Also, reloading is not for everyone. If you are unsure you might pick up a reloading manual and read it to see if it's something you'd do enough to make it worth the cost. Be aware though if the reloading bug bites you, you're hooked for life
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Old February 15, 2013, 11:21 AM   #20
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I would caution against thinking the 7.5x55 Swiss is a cheaper alternative, if you don't reload. True enough it'll use the same .308 diameter bullet, but that's also only an advantage to the reloader. It may be cheaper now but other than the K31, I can't think of another rifle in the US that uses the round. It's guarunteed to be more and more expensive as time goes on. I bought mine because, other than it's accuracy, I can use the same bullets I'd use for reloading my 30-06 and 308's.
Other than echoing the take up reloading chorus, the best advice I can offer is simply wait it out. 308 will get less expensive in the future.
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Old February 15, 2013, 12:26 PM   #21
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No, reload is not the only way to go.

Component prices are up, they are hard to fine.

To get a good setup (vs a cheap combo) is going to cost something around $500 when all is said and done.

Spread that out over the number of shots and its going to take a lot of time to recoup.

I am not saying not to, it fun, it saves some money in the long run, but its not an automatic slam dunk.

The best bang for the buck is a small caliber rifle when you get a LOT of rounds for a lb of powder. 223 or the like.
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Old February 16, 2013, 10:42 AM   #22
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I totally disagree with RC20. If you're going to shoot your rifle a lot reloading is a better option than purchasing ammo off the shelf for $30 plus dollars for 20 rounds. Finding components is difficult right now but not impossible and the drought/shortage won't last forever. The initial investment will cost a few hundred dollars but will, in the end, prove to be cost effective if, and again I say if you intend shoot often. If you're only gonna hunt with it a box of 20 rounds will last you 20 years.
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Old February 16, 2013, 10:56 AM   #23
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I got a box at Walmart yesterday for 18.00. Remingon 150gr.
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Old February 16, 2013, 11:19 AM   #24
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Well OP, you went and bought a gun with a more "specialized" twist when all you really only needed or wanted a plain ol' shooter and ya did it in the middle of an ammo crunch. You have 3, maybe 4 options: One is to reload as already stated. It doesn't take $ 500 worth of gear (more like $100 to start), it can be done by anybody with access to any kind of table but on the flip side some folk don't like it and components are just as hard to right now as ammo. Another option is to just deal with it and fork over your hard earned cash for ammo. A third is to park the gun and wait for a better day to get into centerfire shooting. The forth is to sell it and get something else but that doesn't really solve anything for you since ALL ammo is expensive and hard to get right now.

A classic case of leapin before you look.
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Old February 16, 2013, 11:20 AM   #25
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TOC (total cost of ownership) is as applicable to a rifle purchase as it is to an automobile or major capital outlay on a large business.

That being said, you need to determine if shooting for you will be an occasional Saturday afternoon range trip or something you're "buying" into where a further outlay of monies will be the norm.

If it is the latter, then reloading is the way to go, no doubt about it. Right now, as was stated, reloading components are in just as short of supply as loaded ammunition. Those of us that have been through panics past were ready for it (or should have been) and so continue to enjoy the sport with little to know impact (at least not for me anyway). But supplies will once again become available (as will loaded ammo) and the reloading hobby will be easier to jump into than it is right now.

Good luck on what ever your decision might be. I hope you decided to keep your Model 10. I've a Model 10 FCP HS-Precision and enjoy the heck out of it.
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