Which caliber to keep?

Discussion in 'Firearms & Ammunition' started by Milan, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. TNDave

    TNDave AH Member

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    You can always get another safe! I’m one away from needing another safe, then you have to buy more to fill it...it’s a vicious cycle!
     

  2. WAB

    WAB AH Fanatic

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    You definitely need new friends. If your current friends are not interested in being gifted these fine rifles in excess of your minimalist desires, there are those of us here willing to step into the breach for you!
     

  3. Rob404

    Rob404 AH ENABLER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Looks like you've come to the right place
     
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  4. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH Legend

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    The way I see it, you have presented only three rifles of different utility at most, not a bad thing of course.

    The 8mm and 30 calibers and the 338s are useful for all the same things.

    The 9.3x62 and 375 are nearly the same, although the 375 carries a legal advantage in many places.

    The 404j is arguably a large bore.

    If it were me, I’d select the most reliable, fastest pointing, best fitting smallbore and put my soul into mastering that gun. Same with 9.3 or 375, pick.

    404j is in a unique class until you have a 416 to agonize over which is better.

    What you don’t have is a long range smallbore in the list. A 6mm, .257, or a 6.5 would be a missing category....better fix that while you’re at it!
     
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  5. Waterbuck2008

    Waterbuck2008 AH Senior Member

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    Remind me again why you aren't considering adding a .450/400 or a .470 NE to "round up" your fine collection?
     
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  6. BeeMaa

    BeeMaa AH Fanatic

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    Yes, you may have just asked the fox to give up the keys to the hen house.
    There is a reason there is a thread called "Big Bore Addiction Group".

    My name is BeeMaa and I have addiction that has cost me two Fort Knox 6637's.
     
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  7. The_Wanderer

    The_Wanderer AH Senior Member

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    Here's My take
    8x57
    - Keep its different
    30-06 -Keep and make a light weight mountain stalking gun.
    .300 WM - Make all weather for North American big game
    9.3x62-keep for Scrubby/dense hunting short barrel
    .375 H&H - African Safari- Plains Game
    .404 Jeffry - African Safari- Buff, lion back up to 375H&H

    then a .22 and something to send a projectile in the 60-120g and fast range
     
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  8. perttime

    perttime AH Senior Member

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    Are you going to hunt something that a .375 cannot put down?
    If you are worried about ammo availability, keep the 30-06, too.
     
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  9. Cam Moon

    Cam Moon AH Veteran

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    First off, there is no such thing as too many guns! Gentlemen, encourage the women in your life to buy shoes! More shoes! Even more! NEVER complain about it. And then keep that in your pocket!! (y)
    (And remember.... Guns are like family. You can't just get rid of them!)
    As far as your actual question, I may differ from most in that I don't believe that a large caliber is nearly as important as a lot of people do. In my honest opinion, a lot of people shoot bigger than necessary. I've shot whitetail, mule deer, elk, and moose (some BIG moose) with my 6mm Rem.
    I feel that if you have one with recoil you're comfortable with, and you shoot it often and get really accurately with it, it'll be much more effective than a large caliber that kicks like a mule. Never underestimate the importance of accurate shot placement! I have several firearms, but hardly ever even use my 300WM. In my mind, my .270 is all I'll ever really need around here, and the recoil isn't an issue. So what's wrong with keeping your 30-06 as your primary? Shoots 130gr for deer etc, and larger 180+gr if you want something bigger for moose etc.
    But all that's hypothetical, as I can't possibly picture a gun nut of any kind downsizing that much! LOL
     
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  10. Milan

    Milan AH Veteran

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    Already have a safe and a cabinet and other storage.
     

  11. Timbo

    Timbo AH Fanatic

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    From your line-up, it's a hard choice, and for various reasons have discarded such great calibres as your 9.3x62 because of limited bullet selection etc. But, if I had to be brutally honest, and could only keep 2 from your line-up, this would be my choice:

    1) .30/06: It's got the widest bullet selection: from 110gr plinking to 240gr PP and FMJ solids for heavy game. This calibre has the best mean value by having a bullet/load combination that would cover all the game that could be taken by your other calibres. As you said yourself, you can find ammo for it anywhere, and for this reason I'd keep it over the others: besides the .30/06 for over 100yrs has proven it can do the job.

    2) 404J: It's a proven DG calibre with a bit more wallop than the 375HH. Personally, I'd feel more comfortable having that authority the 404J has over a 375HH in any situation where your life may be at stake.

    (y)
     
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  12. Cam Moon

    Cam Moon AH Veteran

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    @Timbo Kinda what I was thinking, and for the same reasons.
     
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  13. Milan

    Milan AH Veteran

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    Thanks for all the input so far. If you guys feel like it, keep it coming still, it is a great read and it does help me confirm or rethink my reasoning. So let me expand a little on some of my other thoughts leading up to the original post.

    As to 30-06 for example...I love that round, but even with the great selection of bullets available. I find:
    1) with factory choices so vast, I pretty much stopped reloading as it used to be great when specific bullets were not available in factory ammo in the years gone by and I found the ammo I loaded was not much more accurate than the premium ammo at the time. Not saying I would not reload anymore, I will...but probably just to find some "pet load".
    2) reloading or not, I seem to settle on 2 bullets max in any given caliber. 1 lighter and one heavier. Usually never the lightest or heaviest.

    In any caliber, just like having only 1 rifle, let's say, I like to learn the ballistics of that one bullet that I want to use. Again fewer choices here being seen as minimalist, simpler approach. For example, in 9.3x62 I only use 285/286gr. Seems to work fine.

    The only reason to keep more than one rifle (as that too crossed my mind...do not freak out...I mean one main hunting rifle...I would still have my .22s and target and plinking rifles), was to have one say flatter shooting and one more of a true bush gun. Though I have to admit, none of calibers I like are particularly flat shooting (except maybe the 300WM), so I live in the more rainbow ballistic world to begin with. Another option I considered was 7mm for most times and 300WM for the longer shots. Then again, I could have just one 7mm and use say 2500-2600 162gr bullets for most hunting and 139 flying say at 2800-2900 for the longer shots. Or do the same with 30-06. Or if truly 1 most practical gun, then perhaps the 300WM is hard not to pick. But 1) I'm not really a big magnum guy (though somehow I always own one or more) and 2) I really do like almost all of the choices you guys put up. Just for example something like 7+9.3/375/404, or 30-06+375/404 or 8+404, etc. all classics I would say.

    Hey, am I confused or what? I will probably end up maybe dwindling stuff down to just fewer calibers rather than just 2. But ultimate goal would be 3-6 rifles total. One or two .22, one or two target rifles (6.5x55 and .308), one or two hunting rifles (plus I may keep one military mauser as plinking, open sights only). And it is the hunting rifles I have most trouble with.

    Thanks for letting me vent... :D :D
     
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  14. Timbo

    Timbo AH Fanatic

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    Well if it's 3 then, upon your thinking, my choice would be 8x57, 9.3x62 and the 404J.
     
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  15. Milan

    Milan AH Veteran

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    Nah, nah...you misunderstood me...see bolded text above. But your caliber choice is fine (I guess the old military Mauser would cover the 8mm but just not for hunting (not accurate enough and open sights only on top of that). I have old eyes now. :D
     

  16. Eric Anderson

    Eric Anderson AH Enthusiast

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    Only 9 calibers?
    You should be expanding, not contracting that collection.

    Might I suggest:
    .22lr needs no explanation
    5.56 mm. Dirt cheap varmit round.
    22-250 for those long shot varmit
    .243 light deer and varmit round
    .308 because semi auto AR-10 goodness
    .303 British because history man
    7.5 Swiss K-31 rifles are amazing
     
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  17. Timbo

    Timbo AH Fanatic

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    Milan, I refer you to the highlighted sections in your post in my defence.
    No disrespect man - but you're splitting hairs like my ex used to!! Jeez!!
    :A Bang Head:

    :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:
     

  18. dchamp

    dchamp AH Veteran

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    You know, you could buy just a Blaser R8 or a Sauer 404. That way you would have only one rifle and as many barrels as you desire. Just Sayin
     
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  19. Adrian

    Adrian AH Fanatic

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    Or a Mauser M03 with a small selection of barrels.
    Because we all know a Mauser action is the best........
     
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  20. Milan

    Milan AH Veteran

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    No problem. But please do not compare me to any woman. :D

    Ha. I know a lot of people praise them. Not my cup of tea, though. I'd sooner go for a Mauser M03.

    Strictly Mauser 98 style guy. I even get light rash having to concede the trigger and firing pin assemblies on a ZKK or CZ as not really improvements over original Mauser design. I will bend to accept Winchester or Kimber for hunting and anything else like Tikka, Weatherby, Remington for target shooting. I do understand why those and other push-feed or other style actions are liked by others even for hunting, as there is really nothing wrong with them. But the only "improvement" over a 98 I'd take would be all stainless, or better yet, titanium version for inclement weather hunting.

    I agree but as per above, probably not gonna happen for me. Too old school to be cool. Or maybe old school is cool. :D :D
     
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