Best Rifle for all Deer hunting

Discussion in 'Firearms & Ammunition' started by Bullsbar, Mar 6, 2017.

  1. Dr Ray

    Dr Ray AH Elite

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    For ordinary deer I suggest 130 gn 270
    It has more energy and shoots flatter than 308 or 30/06

    For animals the size of kudu, your cartridge id okay but lacks the big whack
    I suggest 180 gn in 300 win magnum
    Better to be over gunned than under
     
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  2. Ray B

    Ray B AH Elite

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    There is no "best" deer cartridge. there are plenty of adequate and several excellent cartridges. For the lighter deer (75 to 250 lbs) an expanding bullet of 100 to 200 grains, for deer heavier than 250 pounds a 150 - 250 grain bullet of stout construction; either with a muzzle velocity of 2500 to 3000 fps will be entirely up to the job.
     
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  3. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    I think the OP doesn't own any guns yet. 375 H&H is a good caliber, but not for a new guy. He'd learn a lot of bad habits while spending a ton of money in ammo for his troubles.
     
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  4. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    300 Win Mag is an expensive way for a new shooter to learn bad habits.

    270 is good for what it does, but there are more bullet choices in similar-performing 6.5/260 Rem and for 280 Rem/7mm-08/284 Win
     
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  5. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH Legend

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    @sgt_zim is so spot on.

    If someone said they wanted to kill deer and was clear they would not go to Africa, the 6.5x55, 6.5x284, 6.5x54ms, 6.5 creedmore and .260 are all so sublime.

    If they wanted deer and "maybe" an elk, moose or black bear someday or if Africa was possibly a future choice, 7x57 is the ultimate switch hitter with easy recoil. If they want to get kicked like a mule then 7mm mags will abuse him sufficiently while doing its job.

    Those two diameters are ballistically magical and the 110-180 range and 100-160 range for grain weights offers so much versatility.

    My children will own those just as I do because there is nothing better for me unless I'm hunting tooth and claw animals that need a dangerous game caliber pounding.
     
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  6. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH Legend

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    And to add an elitist remark: has anyone met a jerk (other than me as the outlier) that shoots 6.5x55 or 7x57? Rather gentlemanly cartridges usually chambered in gorgeous (but not always valuable) rifles. Usually operated by thoughtful people as they gave a lot of thought to the cartridge and the quarry.
     
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  7. BWH

    BWH AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Here in Texas, I don't know anyone that owns one..... I'm sure they are awesome though. For a newby.... maybe a 7mm-08 would be great.
     
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  8. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH Legend

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    What Texans lack in fine gun taste is usually overcome by the fact they are the nicest Americans I've ever had the privilege to meet. I hope to move their some day when the opportunity presents itself.

    A 7mm-08 is a poor man's 7x57. Identical ballistically and usually available at every corner gun shop. I say that because "new" 7x57 guns are often super premium quality guns. That being said, there are scores of old Mausers in 7x57 that have more soul, beauty and quality at $400 than any plastic modern gun at $2000. Many people are afraid to buy used guns thinking they were sold because they won't shoot when in reality most guns shoot wonderfully. If I could show you the handful of "questionable bore condition" guns I've owned you'd be shocked to know they were some of the most accurate, especially the worn British rifles.
     
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  9. Shootist43

    Shootist43 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Rookhawk, I've owned several 7 x 57s and used them in lieu of a 30 - 06 for 10 years or so prior to stumbling unto my first 6.5 x 55. From that day on the 7 x 57s have remained in one of the safes. I'm still chuckling over your comment that these calibers are used by thoughtful people. All I can say about that is "from your lips to God's ears!!"
     

  10. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    You'd be welcome to darken my door any day.

    And I may be a tobacco-chewin', cowboy hat wearin' redneck, but I also enjoy putting on a suit and Oxfords and taking my wife to enjoy Verdi, Puccini, and Mozart operas. As a matter of fact, I took her to see Barber of Seville up in Austin for her birthday last year and had enough good sense to even wear my Bugs Bunny tie. :D Had a number of guys do face-palms "That's hilarious! I should have worn mine, too!"

    One-dimensional people are boring. ;)

    I'd love to own a 7x57, but I would probably have to get a 7mm-08 and get it worked over a bit. Even at that, my choices in LH 7mm-08 are fairly limited - Blaser, Tikka, and Savage show up at gunbroker. And I love my Tikka 6.55x55 SE.
     

  11. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    I'm the only guy I've ever seen at American Shooting Centers in west Houston with a 6.5x55SE. When I ordered mine a couple months back, my best friend was "Dude, WTF did you just order???"
     
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  12. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH Legend

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    Don't forget @sgt_zim that a single shot rifle is a great left handed choice! Ruger #1 at $1000. Dakota model 10 at $4000.

    You've got many choices as a LH shooter!
     
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  13. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    When I get one of the short 7s, it's going to be for the wife and/or stepsons. If they end up not liking shooting/hunting, then I still have a single-shot toy. :D Might end up being an Encore, but I'll cross that bridge when I get to it. Right now, I owe the IRS, plus four birthdays this week, and the groom's side of a wedding next summer. I may be out of the gun-buying business for the next 18 months or so.
     
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  14. David Middleton

    David Middleton AH Senior Member

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    True but the chances of getting one of these past the wife rapidly goes downhill after first trip.
     
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  15. Dr Ray

    Dr Ray AH Elite

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    Confidence in bullet placement is paramount.

    Heavy recoil will certainly affect the confidence .

    A more manageable cartridge/rifle will instil confidence and therefore bullet performance.
     
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  16. Nicholas Barcomb

    Nicholas Barcomb AH Veteran

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    I'm in the 6.5 x 55 SE crowd. For antelope/ pronghorn/ smaller deer species, 129 gr to 139 gr, for standard deer/ caribou sized game, 140 gr, for elk/ kudu sized game 160 gr. Anything at 500 yds and less should be DRT with these combinations and a good shooter! Decent recoil and if the shot is correct, no trackng involved. Good luck and stay safe!
     
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  17. BenH2016

    BenH2016 AH Veteran

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    I really like a 30-06 for plains game. Success must be a large part of the reason for its popularity and longevity.

    Years back when I first started hunting there was little question in the matter; get a 30-06 and don't look back. There were a few guys who hunted with .270s and 7x47s too, but 30-06 was the most popular.

    I recently got back into hunting and asked all my hunting mates to keep an Wye out for a nice 30-06, I was surprised to hear a few of them speaking against the calibre and the recommendation was to get a 300 win mag. I felt this was more to do with current trend than anything else, perhaps it's considered boring to just continually recommend the "humble old" 30-06 when more exciting sounding fare is available.

    Being a traditionalist I stuck with the search and found a nice used CZ ZKK 600 in 30-06 which I have already used to take impala, puku and hartebeest, all one shot kills that didn't go 10mtrs from where they were when I shot them.
     
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  18. curtism1234

    curtism1234 AH Enthusiast

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    The 300 win mag is almost 55 years old; so I think this cartridge is a very traditional choice as well. The main difference between the 06 and 300 is the 06 is owned by folks who hunt large game sporadically. The 300 is owned by folks who hunt large game regularly.

    I agree throughout the first decade of the 21st century the trend was towards high velocity and high energy. While the 300wsm really took off, the 300 win mag was certainly lumped in that category too. I must confess that's why I own a 7mm rem mag (and still am a fan of overkilling game).

    For a number of years now the trend has done a complete flip away from even the standard 3006 to minimal recoil like the 243 and 7mm-08 (perhaps the pussification of America or new bullets, probably both...) :A Bulb:
     
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  19. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    7mm-08 is the modern incarnation of the 7x57 Mauser (they are almost ballistically identical) . It's a long-for-caliber bullet (same as your 7mm Rem Mag) for less money, less recoil, shorter action, and longer barrel life.

    Inside around 300 yards, there is little, if any advantage to the 7mm Rem Mag over the 7mm-08. The big advantage of small (.284, .308) and medium (.33) magnums is found at distances beyond 300 yards over their non-magnum cousins that use the same bullets.

    With a 200 yd zero, a 7mm Rem Mag has about 2-3" holdover advantage compared to 7mm-08 when both are shooting the same 175 gr bullet. For a lot of people, that difference is so insignificant as to be outweighed by lower ammunition costs, reduced recoil, and a shorter action. And there's even less difference between 7mm Rem Mag and 280 Rem than 7mm Rem Mag and 7mm-08/7x57 Mauser.

    In 300 WM, you get similar performance - the 210 gr bullets perform ballistically about the same in the 300 as 180-190 gr bullets fired from a 30-06.

    Practically speaking, unless you live west of I-35, opportunities to take full advantage of the ballistics of magnums are the exception, not the rule. Even in large swathes of southern Africa, shots longer than 200 yards may be little available.

    I grew up in south Louisiana and have lived in our near Houston since 1991. I've been deer and pig hunting now for 35 years. The longest shot I've ever taken on live game was about 180 yards.

    To each his own, but there are sound reasons to not go with magnum cartridges that have nothing to do with people being recoil shy. And no, "recoil shy" doesn't describe me. Other than my AR-15, the lightest caliber I own is a 6.5x55 SE. The rest are all 30 cal or larger.
     

  20. sgt_zim

    sgt_zim BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    I've always been a 30-06 fan. I bought my very first rifle, a Rem 700 in 30-06, when I was 13. I paid $315 for it, new. I earned the money by raising and selling tomatoes at 25¢/lb.
     
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