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suggestions for all around deer rifle

This is a discussion on suggestions for all around deer rifle within the Ruger Bolt Action forums, part of the Rifle & Shotgun Forum category; any suggestions for all around good deer rifle (caliber/ brand) preferably ruger?just getting into hunting want power with range or anyone have any good suggestions??? ...


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Old July 22nd, 2013, 01:01 AM   #1
 
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suggestions for all around deer rifle

any suggestions for all around good deer rifle (caliber/ brand) preferably ruger?just getting into hunting want power with range or anyone have any good suggestions??? thank you



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Old July 22nd, 2013, 02:45 AM   #2
 
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What's your budget?

Just getting into it I guess you do not want to break the bank.

A Ruger American in 30-06 meets those requirements, and is budget priced. 30-06 is quite a bit of power, but most folks do not have an issue with recoil. Ammo is everywhere, and is avilable in a wide varity.

The American is also chambered in a 308, maybe more. Every flavor is capable of being an effective deer rifle.

If I was buying a deer rifle I'd get a .243, (already have a 30-06 Ruger M77). Plenty of power to take down a big ole buck, and useful for hogs or yotes.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 02:52 AM   #3
 
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It is always difficult to narrow anything down to just ONE choice. IMHO, if there is to be only one rifle, it should be a .308 0r .30-06.

Good luck with this. Let us know what you decide!
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 04:13 AM   #4
 
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Hard to go wrong with 308 or 30-06, will give you room for much more than just deer. That's not to say there aren't a lot more options out there that will do the job. The caliber/balistic gurus can offer much more info than me. What kind of rifle action do you prefer and what distances are you thinking of? Do you want stainless steel? Polymer stock? There are an abundance of options.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 06:26 AM   #5
 
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7mm mag
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 06:31 AM   #6
 
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All the 30 caliber guns have a lot of recoil whether their owners will admit it or not, and you will shoot a gun with less recoil, more accurately. If I were getting a new deer rifle, I would get one of the new 6.5's, same as I did the last time. They shoot flatter and hit as hard as the 30's with much less recoil. Only problem might be finding ammo if you don't reload.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 06:46 AM   #7
 
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Id say .270win I have taken a few deer and a hog with it. worked like a charm.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 06:48 AM   #8
 
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First, you need to define what you mean by an "all-around deer rifle". The term "all-around" is usually meant to indicate a tool's applicability to a number of tasks, while the term "deer rifle" is one single task that a rifle could perform.

Any rifle that qualifies as a deer rifle will be (more or less) just as good for that task as any other rifle that qualifies as a deer rifle at a given price point. (personal preferences notwithstanding).

That is to say if you buy a Ruger American, or whatever Savage (or Marlin or Henry or...) makes at the $450 price point, or any such other thing at that price point, and you choose any deer-appropriate caliber (.243, .260, 6mm, .30-30, .44 Magnum, .357 Magnum, .30-'06, .308, .270, 7mm-'08...) then you have an all-around deer rifle that will kill a whitetail or a mule deer as far out as any normal person is likely to want to shoot one (say, 250 yards, or up to 100-125 with the pistol calibers).

If you want a deer rifle that will also shoot deer at 500 yards or more, or a deer rifle that will also kill an Elk, then you need to go up a step in caliber and start looking at things like 7mm Rem. Mag., .300 Win. Mag., 7mmWSM, or the like. (.30-'06 and .308 still qualify for this list too).

Ammo availability is obviously a concern at this point, so sticking with .30-'06 or .308 might be advisable, but then you shouldn't take our word for it, go look where you normally buy ammo and see what they have the most of on the shelf on a random day in deer calibers. You may find no .30-'06, but a huge stack of .270 Win.

If you have more money to spend then you'll do yourself a favor by moving up to the $600-$800 price range and look for a Ruger M77 (or, perhaps a Remington 700, or a Winchester 70). Now you've got a rifle you can pass down to future generations and is truly a beautiful piece of machinery.

If you have even more money, say you feel comfortable looking in the $1,000-$1,500 range (or even slightly more), it behooves you to look at Kimber or perhaps a Sako. They build beautiful rifles.

So, figure out what it is you really mean by "range" and then maybe let us know how you feel about carrying a heavy rifle around all day (do you hunt from a permanent stand 50 yards from the truck or do you hump up and down 1,000' mountains for 12 hours?) and then some better choices will present themselves.

Last edited by jpvanhoy; July 22nd, 2013 at 06:52 AM.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 07:02 AM   #9
 
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There are many variables when hunting deer. Do you want to use the rifle for any other game or varmints? Are you hunting small white-tail or large mule deer? Are you hunting in brush with only short range shots or in high desert with long range shots? How much recoil can you stand? What is your budget?

I have a .44 magnum lever-action with iron sights for hunting deer in very brushy areas. A lever-action 30-30 is also a very good option. I have a bolt-action .243 with an expensive scope for varmint hunting and small deer hunting at longer ranges. I have a .308 with an expensive scope for larger deer and elk. I have a .325 WSM with a very expensive scope for very long range elk shots up to rogue elephants at close range. It leaves large bruises when you shoot it.

If you are going to use a scope, get a very good one. Some of us believe the scope should cost as much or more than the rifle. On the high end for very long range shots, the scope may cost twice what the rifle costs.

A snap answer is, get a .270 with a good 3-9 power scope for deer hunting. The recoil isn’t too bad and the .270 has taken many deer over the years.

Last edited by LimaCharlie; July 22nd, 2013 at 07:50 AM. Reason: Spelling
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 07:16 AM   #10
 
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Lots of great posts; for ammo that's cheaper & more plentiful usually, I'd go with the Ruger American, in .308...
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 07:27 AM   #11
 
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Anything the .270 Winchester can do, the .280 Remington can do better as it has slightly higher muzzle velocities for a given bullet weight and better ballistic coefficients. In addition to more efficient BCs and the availability of heavier bullet weights than .270, there is a much wider selection of bullets in 7mm, making it much more versatile.

With a 150 gr bullet all three will launch them within 50-75 fps of the other (2,850 versus 2,925), and all three will produce roughly equal recoil in a similar bullet weight given the physics of bullet weight, powder charge and muzzle velocity. The .270 is only lighter recoiling in lighter bullet weights but it tops out at 150 grains where the .280 is capable of 175 grain bullets and the .30-06 can handle 220 gr bullets.

The major difference starts to show at longer ranges where the more efficient 7mm bullets start to retain more velocity and energy with better sectional density than the .30-06 in any given bullet weight.

----

If a light recoiling rifle is desired, the 7x57mm Mauser and 7mm-08 are options as well, giving up about 150 fps in a 150 gr bullet.

-----

The 7mm Rem Mag has been popular for decades. It will launch a 150 gr bullet a couple hundred feet per second faster than the .30-06 but the heavier powder charge and greater velocity result in more felt recoil as well as shorter barrel life. If you want to go with a 7mm mag, go bigger and faster and just get the 7mm STW as it's regarded as a fine long range deer and elk cartridge.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 07:46 AM   #12
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shuckinthecorn View Post
All the 30 caliber guns have a lot of recoil whether their owners will admit it or not, and you will shoot a gun with less recoil, more accurately. If I were getting a new deer rifle, I would get one of the new 6.5's, same as I did the last time. They shoot flatter and hit as hard as the 30's with much less recoil. Only problem might be finding ammo if you don't reload.
I know it's Hollywood and it's fake but my newbie question is, in the movie The Professional with Jean Reno, i don't know the caliber, but why was there no apparent recoil when young Natalie Portman used his rifle?
I'm asking this because i see an M77 30-06 in my future. Thanks.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 07:58 AM   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alayonruger View Post
I know it's Hollywood and it's fake but my newbie question is, in the movie The Professional with Jean Reno, i don't know the caliber, but why was there no apparent recoil when young Natalie Portman used his rifle?
I'm asking this because i see an M77 30-06 in my future. Thanks.

In movies and television shows, the actors are shooting blanks with almost no recoil. The better directors get the actors to fake the recoil.

I see petite young women in the movies shooting a Desert Eagle 50AE with no recoil.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 08:01 AM   #14
 
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I suggest going with a .30-06, it will handle any North American deer. Ammo is available in a large number of loadings to suit almost every need. Lower priced rifles from Ruger, Marlin, Savage, and Mossberg are getting excellent reviews as to accuracy. I would get a bolt action, rapid fire is not going to put venison in the freezer, but accuracy will. Recoil is noticable but not hard to get used to, I have been shooting a .30-06 since I was 16 years old. The only other caliber I use is a .30-30 for close in hunting in brush or deep woods. My .30-06 has taken elk, whitetail deer, mule deer, black bear, and hogs with no problems. Most of the game I have taken was with 165 grain loads. Regardless of what you choose, be safe, be ethical, and always have fun.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 09:28 AM   #15
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The cartridge is easy IMO, go with the .270 Winchester. It gives you great range, good power (hardly a difference between it and the .30-06 really), lighter recoil than the .30-06, and a rather simple bullet selection, which goes as follows: Federal, Remington, or Winchester 130's for Deer, and the same three brands in 150 grain if Bear or Elk are your quarry. There is no animal in the lower 48 that can't be bagged safely with the .270, period.

Now, on to the brand... What is your budget? If you can afford a M77 then that's the way you should go, and if not go with the American.
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