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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay fellas, I need to get 2 rifles, both bolt-actions. One for varmits and one for elk/ deer. I would like input as to which one: Win mdl 70 (pre or post '64) or Rem 700. Calibers for varmits? Optics?

Thanks

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Big questions, but let me offer some advice. First, I am a Winchester man through and through. However, the Remington model 700s are quality rifles. Although Winchester got real cheap with the looks of their model 70s for a few years, the new ones are absolutely gorgeous. The pre-64/post-64 thing is overrated in my humble opinion. Although collectors want a pre-64 rifle, remember that a pre-64 is close to 40 years old at this point, and getting one that is not beat up or shot out is not going to be easy. Plus, the biggest difference in a pre-64 to a post-64 involves the cartride extractor. This is not a big deal unless you are trying to cycle rounds while lying flat on your back. Last, we must remember that gun manufacturers have made significant leaps in understanding metals and harmonics since 1964.

I would advise that you seriously look at a Winchester model 70 or a Remington model 700 BDL. If you have a little more cash, I would look at a Sako. However, I like rifles that feel "small", meaning I don't like heavy rifles with big, clunky stocks. I am not impressed with the Browning A-Bolt actions, but some people like them. Plus, the Browning BOSS system, if used properly, can really make a difference in shooting tight groups. I wouldn't use a Ruger or a Savage even for a canoe paddle (sorry to the Ruger and Savage fans).

For deer and elk, a .270 is more than capable. Contrary to what the magnum freaks propose, you don't need a .300 magnum for whitetail, mule deer, or elk. There must be something right about .30-06s too, because there are lots of them out there. I have owned a .270 and a .30-06, and I think I like the .270 ballistics better. If you are looking for a cartridge strickly for deer (and not elk), I would recommend that you look seriously at a .25-06. I like shooting smaller calibers simply because I hate lugging a heavy rifle up and down hills. Plus, I like to shoot a lot, and shooting groups with a .300 magnum is not a pleasant experience.

For varmints, it depends on how you like to play things. Personally, I hunt coyotes with a .222, but I like the idea of getting close. Plus, the low recoil makes shooting the cartridge a dream. Likewise, a .223 is a nice cartridge. For longer shots 250 yards+), a .22-250 may be a better choice.

Optics? You get what you pay for, plain and simple. I was pricing out optics last summer when I bought my .270, and was impressed at the number of quality scopes on the market today. You don't need a 20x scope for most species. I have a 3X9X40 on most of my rifles,and I have never felt that I needed more. In the $200-$300 range, I recommend checking out the Leupold Vari-X II series, the Nikon Monarch series, the Bausch & Lomb 3200 series, and Burris. If you want to jump up one price range $300-$425, I recommend the Bausch & Lomb Elite 4200 series, the Leupold Vari-X III, and the higher end Nikon and Burris scopes. If you can afford to pay over $500, you don't need my advice. Just go to the store and whip out the Visa card. Bottom line... don't buy a cheap scope (low-end Bushnell, Simmons, Tasco, ect) and expect to have a quality killing machine.

Last, match the scope with a high-quality set of bases and rings. This will make a huge difference on accuracy.

BigDaddy
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That's a lot of good info. I am only 29 but I still believe that the late Jack O' Connor had it right with the .270, which is just a necked -down .30-06. It seems to be more than adequate for deer. I have to hunt deer with slugs where I hunt, so the deer rifle would have to be a long range/ possible elk gun, for the possible future elk or moose hunt. I do like the idea of the 300 WSM, less recoil and great ballistics. I also have a bunch of 30 caliber bullets which I can reload.

As far as the varmiter, has anyone heard of "burning out" a barrel on the .22/250 or any of the high-velocity calibers? Or is that just a myth?
I hope to shoot some prairie dogs in SD this summer. Should a guy get a bull-barrel?
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Burning out a barrel is possible, especially for "hot" calibers like a .22-250. I've never owned a .22-250, although I know lots of folks that do. I have nothing against the ballistics of the caliber, but the rifles can be bes characterized as "obnoxious". In other words, most .22-250s are loud with a decent muzzle blast. In other words, they are not as pleasant to shoot as smaller cartridges like a .222, .223. or even a .243.

The surest way to avoid shooting out a barrel is to not let your barrel get too hot. Shoot a few rounds and let things cool down a little bit. This will also have huge effect on your groups.

Also, I think that many people that claim their barrels are "shot out" may not be correct. People tend to ignore things like copper fouling. I found a .243 a couple of years ago that was a pre-64 model 70. The owner was frustrated by the fact that it didn't shoot like it used to. The first thing I did was to clean it good. I bought some high quality copper solvent, and you would be amazed by the amount of copper than can deposit in a barrel's rifling over a 30 or 40 year period.

BigDaddy
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am looking at the Remington website and raleeylike the Ballistics of the 6mm for varmits and even deer at close range. Any feedback on heavy barrels/ fluting? How about the caliber itself? :sniper:
 

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The Remington 6 mm is a nice cartridge for somebody that wants a compromise cartridge that can be used for small game, varmints, and whitetails. However, if you are looking for a cartridge in this bullet weight and ballistics range, I would recommend a .243. The ballistics are comparable, although you can get slightly greater muzzle velocity with the 6 mm. However, you will have no problems finding factory cartidges and reloading components for a .243. The same can't be said for a 6 mm.

Leave no doubt about the killing ability of a .243 (or a Rem 6mm, for that matter). I have seen whitetails shot with a .243 at 200+ yards that never took a step. It all comes down to using a high-performance bullet. Also, a .243 is a great varmint load... it will do a vicious job on a coyote, fox, prairie dog, etc. Plus, a .243 is light enough to allow you to hike all day without feeling like you are carrying around a cannon. I have heard of guys using a .243 for mule deer, and it is possible if you are a good shot and you have good bullet expansion.

Heavy barrels? Yes, they are nice if you are sitting on a bench or if you are plunking prairie dogs while stationary. However, hiking around with a heavy-barreled rifle for a few hours will remind you why folks are so interested in synthetic barrels and short-action magnums. Heavy barrels are indeed heavy!

BigDaddy
 

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Born to hunt,

Big Daddy has some of the best advise I've ever seen on a hunting forum. I agree with him on almost everything he said. I think the Remington and Winchesters are both excellent choices. Stay away from the Savages. I just got my first Ruger (in 25-06) and I got it on a trade so I don't have much of an opinion on them yet other that most people I know aren't huge Ruger fans.

Quality optics are imperative for a quality hunting gun. If you are going to buy a new rifle make sure you allow yourself enough money for a good scope! No Tascos, Bushnells, Simmons and high quality rings and bases are a must. I recently borrowed a friends Remington 222 Mohawk with a 16X Leopold for a prarie dog hunt. He has a $500 rifle with a $500 scope and cheap $20 rings and bases....what a joke! Buy the good stuff and you wont be sorry!

For varmit rifles I would suggest a 22-250, 220 swift, 223 or even a 243. The 243 could double as a deer gun (or back up deer gun) but I personally wouldn't suggest this round for deer because I think it is a little light. We all know that a well placed bullet means everything in the deer woods and a 243 CAN kill deer but if you want a deer rifle get something a little bigger. If you have children or a wife/girlfriend that likes to hunt then the 243 might be a good varmit gun for you and a good deer gun for them.

For a deer/ elk gun I also would suggest the 30-06 or the 270 with the 270 being my top pick. If you want a magnum then I would suggest the 300 Win mag. I have a 300 Win mag and a 300 wby mag and the the 300 win is much cheaper to shoot if you don't reload and ammo is easier to find at retail stores. Big daddy is correct in saying that magnum loads aren't much fun to shoot becasue they pound the hell out of your shoulder. If you were primarily wanting an elk gun I would suggest that you go with a magnum caliber. It's always nice to have the extra knock down power of the magnums if you are planning on doing long range shooting which can often be the case on an elk hunt. I hope this info helps.

Whatever you choose, good luck and good shooting!

Charlie
 

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Howdy, In my opinion, As far as accuracy and a rugged product, go with the 700 Remington. I have a BDL and a model 70. The Rem is tougher built hands down. If not a BDL/ADL, I would get a Ruger Mark II. Some rifles are "prettier" but none tougher or more practical. A Ruger will bounce around in the pickup for years. For 2 good all around rifles consider the 280 for coyotes/deer, It is very versatile in the bullet department, mainly if you reload. Though it may be a bit large for what your thinking. Mabeye the 22-250 instead.... For Elk/Deer/ bigger game, I would go with the 7mm mag or a 300 Win Mag. Great trajectory and even more important, energy upon impact. I use my 7Mag for ND whiteails, and it is hardly overkill. It is just right. To me overkill is a myth. Shoot as big a gun as you can without flinching(not to extremes though). You will not "blow up a deer" anymore with a 7MAG than you will with a popshooter like a 243. In flat land like ND you need flat shooters like the 280,270,7mag,300Win..............no 243's or 30-30's. Now, thats just my opinion......by the way, I have a model 70 winchester 30-06 for sale. I need to trade it for a Ruger instead.
 

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born to hunt said:
I am looking at the Remington website and raleeylike the Ballistics of the 6mm for varmits and even deer at close range. Any feedback on heavy barrels/ fluting? How about the caliber itself? :sniper:
I hunt mule bucks with my Remington Model 700 Custom Deluxe 6MM and I hunt 3 months out of the year and I've dropped bucks at 240yds., 288yds. and at 300+ yards with my 6MM. The 6MM is a excellent caliber for deer.
 

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In my opinion,the only thing wrong with rugers are the triggers,heavy with a lot of creep.I had mine adjusted to 3.25 lbs and all of the creep taken out and really like the gun now.Big daddy,which copper solovent did you use?I have tried sweets 7.62 and shooters choice in my rifles.
 

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for the big game i would look at the model 700 guide gun they are light shoot good and if you going though thick stuff or tracking a elk it will be a lot nicer then a long barrel. i would buy it in a 270,280, or 7mm mag.

for varmits i would go with a .223 for shots around 300 yards. a 222 is good to about 250 and if your planing to go way out there for your shots +400yards. i would go with a 25-06
 

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i have a WIN 70 (.270) and it does a great job with deer and i would have no second thoughts about taking an elk with it. also its a beautiful gun and i love the smoothness of the action which is on thing i dont like about the 700.

mark
 

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mallard,

Sorry I took so long to reply to your question, but I haven't checked this message thread in awhile. You asked what type of copper solvent I use, and I'll tell you.

For routine-type cleaning, I use either Sweet's Solvent or the Hoppes Copper Solvent (with the black label). However, for more aggressive copper cleaning, I use Break-Free Bore Cleaning Foam.

A few years back, I knew a guy that had an old Winchester .243 that started shooting like crap. This is a guy that is an avid fox hunter in MN, and he has shot thousands of rounds through this rifle.

We ran some liquid copper solvent through a few times, letting the solvent sit awhile. I was amazed at how much copper we got out of the barrel. After we were getting clean patches, I put a small plug in the chamber and shot in the Break-Free Foam. I let the thing sit overnight to let the foam expand and do its thing. The next day, blue foam was oozing out the barrel! I ran a few rags through to remove the residue, and I can tell you that the liquid solvents hadn't made a dent compared to the foam.

After the copper cleaning, the rifle was back to its former self. This leads me to wonder how many rifles get "burned out" and how many simply have layers of copper interfering with the rifling in the barrel. This is especially true for solid copper bullets like the Barnes.
 
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