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Mcrot

Help looking for a rifle

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Been doing my homework for my first rifle. Unfortunately a recent pain in the ass injury has prevented me from actually shooting anything. Right now looking at Ruger mini 14 tactical, spikes St 15, doublestar Commando carbine. If anyone has any expierance with any of the above or anything else worth looking at (under 1,000) it would be greatly appreciated

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I have had a Ruger Mini-14 for 20 years. I have read a lot of what I consider uncalled for bad comments about the rifle but my experience has been solid. My current Mini is stainless steel with a black synthetic stock. It has a Bushnell Trophy Red Dot sight and a three point tactical sling from Specter.

 

It is an easy to maintain, accurate, reliable carbine with a good heft and is a fast pointer. It does the job and doesn't complain. My breakdown tool is a 556 round. That is all I need. It shoots both 223 and 556 without a hiccup.

 

I have 5, 10, 20 , and 30 round mags (Mags appear to be the favorite gift to Dad :o). I received one of those double cannister 100 round mags but I returned it because I lack the physique of Arnold. I prefer the 20 round because it doesn't interfere with the prone position like the 30 round does. The Specter sling gives me a comfortable carry and allows me to easily drop the carbine to access my 45.

 

The current version of the Mini comes with a heavier barrel to help prevent accuracy drift when firing many rounds. Somehow "heavy fire" and "accuracy" don't go together in my mind. It is one or the other. Anyway, I have never experienced that problem.

 

This is not a glory gun. It is understated and blends in. Just like I like it!

Edited by Rod

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McRot, I second the Smith & Wesson endorsement since mine runs like a champ. I have not owned a Doublestar but I have heard some folks having issues with them. My brother-in-law has a Spikes build and he swears by it as far as reliability and performance and he spends more time at the range than I do. I have nothing negative to say about the Mini-14 and I really like Ruger in general but I understand the magazines are not interchangeable with ARs. Not a big deal but I have found AR magazines are available everywhere while Mini-14s not quite as much. I see them all the time but outnumbered by the sheer volume of AR mags on the market.

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Have found a lot of bad (and a lot of good) reviews of the ruger which makes me curious. If its a love it or hate it type of gun I guess shooting it will be the only test. Bamaman and bill I will definitely add the s&w to the list to try. As always thanks for the input it is much appreciated

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I do not like to bad mouth any BRAND of rifle because there is always one that will make a liar out of you.

this is my personal findings and experience.

 

I look at the mini 14 as I do the AK a reliable platform but not a tack driver I have had 3 mini 14's and

the best consistent group I could muster is about 2 inches magnify that out to 500 yards and that is

10 inches enough for a clean miss. and have had one that would print 3+ inch groups.

 

AR platform seems to group better and as has been mentioned has plenty of accessories

I also agree in most cases that firing fast or accurate you can have one or the other but usually not

both.

 

The ruger will function to the ability of most shooters good out to 300 yards to the maximum range

of the 5.56 / 223 in a semi auto the only affordable option is an AR platform and some are better than others.

I would go with the Smith & Wesson personally I have heard all the hoopla but I have used a S&W and was great.

there is an AK platform from valmet but that has gotten very expensive if you could find one.

An delayed roller bearing H&K 93 but they are not cheap.

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Mcrot,

I've not shot it but I have handled the Mini-14. It feels good in the hand, shoulders well and points well. I've never had a problem with anything Ruger; they have become my favorite producer of lead launchers so I think that is a decent choice.

 

It is no secret that I do not like the AR platform. I simply do not trust them to work when needed, they are made to tight tolerances and have malfunction problems in my personal experience. I am also a .30 caliber bigot; while I enjoy shooting 5.56 I don't think it is a good choice for a survival gun. It is too much round for small game and not big enough for bigger game. Yes it will take deer but even there I'd like something bigger. Remember it was designed to be a full auto assault weapon. That is NOT a survival scenario.

 

I would choose the Mini-30 over the Mini-14 but if you go for a 5.56 caliber I would encourage you to go 5.56 and not consider a .223. Remember the 5.56 will safely shoot .223 but a .223 is NOT safe to shoot the 5.56. I know the 7.62X39 is not the most accurate of rounds but in the under 300 yard range it is solid provided you've bought from a high end manufacturer. The Chinese ammo and old communist stuff is VERY erratic - I've had some that barely cleared the barrel (a 'squib' shot) and some that shot almost 5 inches high at 100 yards. Felt like it was double charged based on the recoil. I do not trust that ammo. A Mini-30 gives you a 30 caliber weapon that would fill most roles needed of a survival weapon if you feed it properly. I'd use something like Wolf or an American manufacturer and it should be fine.

 

If you can go to $1100 you might consider something like the Ruger American ($500) in .30-06 or .308 (bolt action) for larger game, a 10/22 ($250) for small game and varmint, and a Mossberg ($400)pump for home defense/hunting. This should bring you in at under a $1100, give you a solid 3 gun battery and leave you some change. The only thing missing then would be a sidearm. You can probably get a deal for $1000 by buying the combo together but those are the full list prices on the manufacturer's web sites.

 

IF your concern is for a battle rifle, You might consider a PTR-91. For around $900 you get a .308 battle rifle (US built version of the HK-91) that is a solid performer and in a caliber useful for anything in the US. I have one and REALLY like to shoot it; it is a semi-auto in a major caliber and extremely reliable. Solid ergonomics, points well and, while a little heavier than an AR it is still easily carried by this 63 year old. Since I already have a .22LR (Not the Ruger, alas, but a good .22 never the less) for small game that covers my needs all the way out to the 600 to 800 yard range. The gun can perform at longer ranges but I don't think I can!

 

Just the not so humble opinion of a big bore bigot.

Edited by Capt Bart

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Haha will do! Is the ammo shortage have any end in sight? Up until last month I was making it to the pistol range 3-5 times a week and going through a metric sh&$ ton of ammo. I've gone to every sporting good store gun range andwalmart reasonably close and the shelves are not getting restocked. I'm sure you guys could give me a better answer than Stan the gun/kitchen repair specialist from walmart

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Haha will do! Is the ammo shortage have any end in sight? Up until last month I was making it to the pistol range 3-5 times a week and going through a metric sh&$ ton of ammo. I've gone to every sporting good store gun range andwalmart reasonably close and the shelves are not getting restocked. I'm sure you guys could give me a better answer than Stan the gun/kitchen repair specialist from walmart

 

Certainly not before the election, maybe never. Folks are scared and are stocking up. There are even rumblings in some 'progressive' circles about requiring a manufacturing license to reload your own. Won't that be special. If the election goes conservative, the ammo may recover starting next year. If it doesn't, or your state doesn't, don't look for cheap, easily available ammo any time soon.

 

Always remember, CASSANDRA WAS RIGHT! Expect the worst and be pleasantly surprised if things turn out better.

 

Just my not so humble opinion.

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I agree with a lot of what the good Captain and Snake have posted (wise men both) and ultimately the decision on what rifle comes down to what you are comfortable with and what you can afford. Here are some options to consider, and please understand the prices I am listing are just from this area of Texas, so your mileage may vary:

 

You can get a Mosin Nagant is decent condition and 880 rounds of ammo for $300-$350. This should give you basic defense as well as enable you to knock down anything in the Lower 48 gamewise, but you are looking at a 5 round internal magazine on a bolt action.

 

You can also pick up a nice used Marlin 336 lever action (scoped) in 30-30 for between $350-$400. The 30-30 ammunition is not cheap but it is usually less expensive than other hunting rifle rounds. Not as powerful as the 7.62x54R of the M-N, but still respectable.

 

You can also go the pure hunting rifle route and pick up a new Savage Axis/Edge or one of the slightly more expensive models with the Accu-Trigger. These can be had at Academy for $199 and up, including a cheap but effective scope. I really like mine and opted for the 30-06 but you can also get .308, which in retrospect should have been my choice. Again, ammunition costs come into play. I don't mean to overstress this, but rifle ammunition prices are really a different world when you are coming over from pistols and revolvers, and that price is only going up.

 

On the more "tactical" side, a year ago or more I would recommend looking at the SKS rifles, but not today with the prices shooting up, pun intended. For the $400 you might pay for an SKS, I would save a few hundred more and pick up a Saiga converted AK in 7.62x39 or a lightly used AR-15. My prefence in this category is something a little bigger, such as the CETME or the PTR-91, both in .308/7.62x51. If you go with a CETME, shoot it first and have a gunsmith look it over before you plunk down your money. I have been lucky but the horror stories are out there regarding Century Arms and their "quality" builds.

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Ok Im sold on a lever ,and have desided to suggest this one.

 

http://www.browning.com/products/catalog/firearms/detail.asp?fid=003B&cid=034&tid=011&bg=x

 

300Winchester mag.24inch barrell/Take down!!!!

I received a quote from a local gun shop,$850....and he has a 45-70 marlin lever for the same price..

 

The take down aspect realy has me thinking..It would fit in my alice pack..and still be able to get it if I need a 800 yard shot or longer..

Edited by 101matt

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I've got a couple rifles already, but have been thinking for a log while now about a third as a proper hunting rifle. I've got the ruger 10/22, and the good old moison nagant. While the moison is a nice larger caliber rifle I just don't see it as a solid hunting rifle.

 

So! With that said my thought is a 30-06 bolt action, no idea on what make or model. Suggestions?

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My next rifle is the Arsenal SLR-106FR. Basically, it's a really well-built AK in 5.56 NATO and it costs under a grand. They also offer the weapon in other calibers, of course, as well as many other well built rifles if that model doesn't suit you as much.

 

I chose it because I want the reliability and strength of the AK platform and to share NATO-issue ammo in case it becomes easier to come by in a TEOTWAWKI situation. Also, Arsenal is a great company and these things are built extremely well. The only downside it has for me is that you can't use a standard wooden buttstock on it, but overall it's fantastic for the price.

 

http://www.arsenalinc.com/usa/product.php?productid=24&cat=11&page=1

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Ok Im sold on a lever ,and have desided to suggest this one.

 

http://www.browning.com/products/catalog/firearms/detail.asp?fid=003B&cid=034&tid=011&bg=x

 

300Winchester mag.24inch barrell/Take down!!!!

I received a quote from a local gun shop,$850....and he has a 45-70 marlin lever for the same price..

 

The take down aspect realy has me thinking..It would fit in my alice pack..and still be able to get it if I need a 800 yard shot or longer..

 

Matt,

I have a 45-70 Marlin lever that I REALLY like:D. Solid big bore shooter, no complaints. That BLR in .308 is tempting. Over $1000 is a bit tough but having a backup for the PTR-91 would be excellent AND in a lever gun to boot. I LIKE my PTR; a solid shooter, accurate, with no bad habits. What is not to like.

 

The .45-70 govt has a really slow round, a lot of drop at longer ranges. The .45-70 Marlin has essentially the same ballistics as the .444 Marlin. Much higher velocity and energy downrange and a modern powder cartidge. Couple with the Hornady LEVEREVOLUTION ammo you can get a solid Spitzer round from the tube magazine of the Marlin. The BLR has the box magazine so that isn't such a big problem.

 

If you're looking for LONG range shooting, think hard before going to the 45-70. It WILL do the job http://powderburns.tripod.com/sharps.html out to over 3000 yards but the bullet drop is measured in yards at those ranges. Note that a .45-110 was still lethal at that range.

 

Still, a 40-70 (similar ballistics to the .45-70 govt) proved more than adequate. From the linked article:

The last Sharps we test fired was Dennis Bardon’s .40—70 Sharps Straight silhouette rifle. The bullet weighed 403 grains. I don’t have the exact powder charge at hand right now but it would have to be in the 58 to 60 grain range. The muzzle was elevated to five degrees and the bullet started out at 1,333 fps. It hit at 1,155 yards and was still traveling 688 fps.

 

Note in these cases it is moderate muzzle velocity and BIG bullets. The heavy bullet carries momentum a long time. They take more skill at long distances than a .308 or .300 Win Mag but I prefer my Marlin Guide Rifle to ANY bolt gun I've owned.

 

Just my not so humble opinion.

Edited by Capt Bart

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I just chated with the New Weapons store owner(a WEST POINT GRAD)..

He chuckled..Matt so you want to be a cannon cocker and LAUNCH some lead??I thought you were an Engineer??Shit theres not 1000 yards between them mountains,lol...

 

Ok so Im getting information......and so should others...be specisic about WHERE you are and what WORKS for you..

 

Making a deal on the 308....................LEVER...scope...he will Lay away...YAAAAA..

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ooops..

Ok so I asked others and found that for me a pump with a clip may be best suited for this area.

 

http://www.remington.com/products/firearms/centerfire/model-7600/model-7600-synthetic.aspx

 

priceing is the same/ammo the same/difference is I can shoot it from a prone position and have already gotton used to "pumping with my 12 gauge"...

Ok so as I said before ....Im different/different area..

For me the 308 is the best choise..

200yards..=3.657 inch drop...2387 volocity..1897 energy

 

If need be...500 yards=56.4146 inch drop..1812 volocity...1093 energy..

 

Gundata.org is where I got the chart from..so close or long it will STOP what I shoot at.

thats the Important thing to consider..and 308 I can get easy,and IF EVER i get the money for a semi auto it will be in a 308..

JMO

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ooops..

Ok so I asked others and found that for me a pump with a clip may be best suited for this area.

 

http://www.remington.com/products/firearms/centerfire/model-7600/model-7600-synthetic.aspx

 

priceing is the same/ammo the same/difference is I can shoot it from a prone position and have already gotton used to "pumping with my 12 gauge"...

Ok so as I said before ....Im different/different area..

For me the 308 is the best choise..

200yards..=3.657 inch drop...2387 volocity..1897 energy

 

If need be...500 yards=56.4146 inch drop..1812 volocity...1093 energy..

 

Gundata.org is where I got the chart from..so close or long it will STOP what I shoot at.

thats the Important thing to consider..and 308 I can get easy,and IF EVER i get the money for a semi auto it will be in a 308..

JMO

 

Matt,

sounds solid! There was a pump rifle back in the cowboy days Colt build a pump carbine(Colt Lightning - Colt couldn't build a lever gun because of an agreement with Winchester). While it was apparently marginally less reliable than a lever it was also the fastest repeater around. The pump is the fastest non-auto single barrel around. When you get yours I would like to hear what you think. I'm looking around for a backup for my .308 and I'd be interested in what you think of yours.

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Yes Sir.Report WILL Be filed...oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo 3x9Redfield....with the correct Mounts so I can see the Iron sites too..Just in case..I like dealing with This Westpointer,But he keeps handing me the 45/70 lever and smiling..

 

dadburn those "RifleMan" series....

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Yes Sir.Report WILL Be filed...oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo 3x9Redfield....with the correct Mounts so I can see the Iron sites too..Just in case..I like dealing with This Westpointer,But he keeps handing me the 45/70 lever and smiling..

 

dadburn those "RifleMan" series....

 

DO NOT SHOOT THAT 45-70 lever - not unless you're willing to buy it. It is additive as all get out. I do love my levers and that 45-70 Marlin is just about the best all around hunting gun for my neck of the woods. A little big for squirrels, I guess, but I love shooting it.

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