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4/3/2018 9:54 AM
 

     I find myself in "need" of a new gun. The parameters I have set are as follows........ .30 caliber, under 7# pre scope, "reasonably" accurate (2" or under at 100 yds), semi auto would be best but I am not ruling out bolt or lever, capacity the higher the better, easily procured cartridge (probably rules out the 300 blk out unless someone can convince me otherwise). Some guns still in the running are  Ruger GSR, Ruger Mini 30, Browning BAR dbm, Marlin 336. The strengths and weaknesses of those guns and cartridges should be pretty obvious. What can you guys add?

 
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4/3/2018 11:02 AM
 
What is the use case, and are you opposed to having something put together? In my opinion the 7.62x39 is really an under rate 30caliber cartridge, and a favorite simply due to the cost and availability. I am not going to try and convince you the 300blk is commonly available, because that varies from area to area and I am not sure I am convinced myself. The x39 on the other hand gives you a lot of the benefits of the 300blk in a commonly available and inexpensive round. I guess my choices in that category would be a 30/30 Trapper since the lever action is my favorite action type, a CZ 527 in x39, a RGS, or an AR either in x39 or 308. The latter two are a more expensive and/or complicated proposition. The Ruger Mini 30s have long intrigued me but they have a pretty poor reputation for accuracy and reliability. The newer ones are supposed to be better, and with a bit of tinkering even better, but their safety location is a bit problematic. The Browning BARs have a terrible reputation for accuracy when I have researched them. Not much needs to be said about the 30/30, CZ, or RGS, unless you have specific questions or concerns. They are a pretty well known quantity. With the 308 AR you are basically going to have to build or have built one or shell out the cash for a V7 Weapons one to hit your weight. I built one and have less in it then the V7, but it uses a lot of V7 parts, and I am still ringing it out. Capacity is limited to 20 or 25 rounds max, and 308 isn't light. With the AR x39 you have two choices one that takes an AR style mag and one that takes an AK style mag. Most of the ones that I have handled that take an AK style have been very heavy. I handled one this year at shot and was very impressed. If I hadn't just gotten the 308 I may have gone that route. I didn't do any research on them, because of the 308, but I have the name. Near as I can tell there is one guy building x39 ARs that take AR style magazines that have a reputation for running, but they are basically one off builds.

Frankly from a availability stand point the 300blk wins for the actual rifle if you want to stay carbine length, semi-auto, and below 7lbs. All the other semis that I know of that take x39 or 308 are overweight. There are a plethora of options in the 300blk realm, that would provide a compact and light rifle.

Co-Owner Hill People Gear "If anything goes wrong it will be a fight to the end, if your training is good enough, survival is there; if not nature claims its foreit." - Dougal Haston
 
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4/3/2018 12:43 PM
 

As stated already, the .300 in an AR platform satisfies most of your criteria fairly well, but if not, a CZ-527 in 7.62 x 39 would be lightweight option.

 
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4/3/2018 6:29 PM
 
Both of my sons have GSRs. They are the sort of thing that needs to be run and carried to really appreciate. Handy is the defining characteristic. Not as handy as my Trapper, but when both are wearing iron sights, the GSR is only a half pound heavier (5 lbs. 15 ounces vs. 6 lbs. 8 ounces with 5 round plastic mag), offers detachable mags, is more versatile as far as optics, and has more range/power. The GSR is actually lighter than most variations of 336s. If any sort of planned hunting were on the list, I would pick the GSR. For having a rifle on me in the backcountry, I like the Trapper. Scot makes a good case for the 7.62x39, and the CZ is a pretty cool little rifle. It has its quirks though including the "reversed" safety and necessarily high rings. Mags are pricey as well.
 
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4/4/2018 9:41 AM
 
Thanks for the input so far. Scot you firm up my ideas about the 7.62X39. I am looking for a gun that I can have in the truck and with me when I am out and about, on the tractor etc. It will be for general "plinking" (yeah I know, on the big side for that...), taking of the odd varmint, a deer if need be (within reasonable range) and defense in a rural setting. The CZ is interesting and will warrant more research. I have strongly considered the GSR but have held off because it really is overkill for what I need. Maybe nothing wrong with that though. I am steering away from the AR platform because I have one in 5.56 and I also find them a bit "fiddly" and on the heavy side. Knowing my taste I would end up spending more for such a gun. A bolt gun or semi auto with M1 or BAR roots I think would suit me better. Again thanks for the input, the more the merrier! Don't know where this will lead but the journey is fun.
 
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4/4/2018 10:36 AM
 
Come to think of it, the Ruger American comes in x39 and takes their Mini 30 magazines. For what you describe it is really hard to beat a Winchester 30/30 trappers model. As Chris pointed out the Marlins are heavier. I like them better for an optic gun, but after messing with Evan's Winchester I am tempted to get one and keep it iron sight only.

Co-Owner Hill People Gear "If anything goes wrong it will be a fight to the end, if your training is good enough, survival is there; if not nature claims its foreit." - Dougal Haston
 
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4/4/2018 1:42 PM
 
Ruger is making a version of the American now that takes AICS mags in .308. IIRC it tops out at just over 6lbs. They are a hat full of ugly, but every American I've seen shot lights out and was perfectly reliable. Throw a 1-4x scope on that and you could stay under 7lbs, I bet.

 
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4/4/2018 3:14 PM
 

 Wose and Scot, I was just about to throw both the Ruger American Ranch and Howa mini action into the discussion. Both seem in the ball park with the Ruger winning on made in USA and more available capacity. Price on both is cheaper than other options. Scot part of my problem is I would need at minimum a "peep" sight as my eyes just don't do open sights well at any distance anymore. This gun will be scoped with some kind of optic but I would like BUIS which gives the nod to some of the other platforms. This is still fun! 

 
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4/4/2018 6:23 PM
 

That kind a takes the American out of the running, as by the time you get irons mounted on it, you might as well go another route.

You never know though. The way Ruger has been releasing new models lately, they might come out with one with BUIS on it. The really obvious thing for them to do would be to make a Scout version of the American. It would probably be the only factory Scout to "make weight," but I bet they're afraid of robbing sales from the GSR.

 
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4/4/2018 9:36 PM
 
Depending on cost (there have been some really good deals in the past), the Howa Mini could be a great choice if you can get past BUIS. Personally I think it is a higher quality gun than the Ruger American series, and was considering one to replace my CZ before getting distracted with other expenses. More a mini Remington 700 from many years ago quality wise than current econo-bolts. Varmint use also leans toward some sort of scope anyway. Howa Minis are gtg on capacity.


https://www.legacysports.com/catalog/howa/howa-mini-action-rifle/

 
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4/5/2018 6:51 AM
 
You have hit on the one time the 30/30 is easy to beat. That being said the Skinner Peep is pretty dang nice, and would be my choice for an older Winchester. Evan has one on his, and it work well.

I guess you could also throw the Mossberg MVP in 308 and the Savage Scout in either 308 or x39 into the mix. I personally like the CZ over all those due to the irons already on the rifle, and/or the shorter action (over the Savage x39), but that is just me.

Co-Owner Hill People Gear "If anything goes wrong it will be a fight to the end, if your training is good enough, survival is there; if not nature claims its foreit." - Dougal Haston
 
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4/5/2018 12:05 PM
 

Neither the Savage or the Mossberg make weight both are pretty heavy compared to the other suggestions. I am really leaning toward something in 7.62X39 now. Seems the best cartridge for my intended use. Here is a question. Do I limit myself if I go with a rifle that doesn't have BUIS and has the lesser capacity of both the CZ and the Howa? If so how much and should I consider it a deal breaker if the defensive use is only a minor portion of the use equation?

 
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4/5/2018 1:07 PM
 
The Scout rifle concept was born what? Forty years ago now? At the time optics were no where near as durable and reliable as they are now. My grandfather was of an age with Cooper, and had a pretty jaundiced view of scopes. In my youth and early twenties, it wasn't uncommon for fairly expensive scopes to fog or lose zero. Variables were even more fragile, and often would shift zero through the range of magnification.

As much as my inner OCD nature cringes when I say it, a person could probably get along without BUIS these days, as long as they bought a quality optic. I've been using the same Leupold Vari-x III for sixteen or seventeen years now. It's not a top dollar optic by any means, but it has never once failed or lost zero, despite temperature changes, getting rained on, dropped, fallen on, and riding hundreds of miles of really bad forest service roads that busted my buddy's ACOG.
 
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4/5/2018 4:05 PM
 
I'm not going to say Wose is wrong. My reservation is that rain (which I know is a big part of where you're going to be carrying that thing) can quickly make a scope unusable whereas the irons are usually still good to go.

We are fortunate in this matter that your conduct will be your marker and, thus, your reputation. The conduct of others on this forum has been, and will continue to be, their marker, and thus, their reputation. In the west, a person invests in one's reputation carefully. - 112Papa
 
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4/5/2018 8:30 PM
 
Take a look at the Tikka T3X offerings. Superlite, Compact, CTR, etc. in 308.

You mentioned being ok with ~2moa (a good shotgun with slugs will do that, ha.), the Tikka is guaranteed to shoot MOA and most will do considerably better than that. The actions are VERY smooth and the factory triggers are some of the best in the business. They are one heck of a rifle for the price.

Talk is cheap...lets compare fur checks.
 
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4/7/2018 6:21 AM
 
I don't know why I always forget about the Tikka rifles. They are well worth a look.

Co-Owner Hill People Gear "If anything goes wrong it will be a fight to the end, if your training is good enough, survival is there; if not nature claims its foreit." - Dougal Haston
 
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4/9/2018 12:23 PM
 
The Tikka series offers a great deal. The existing line is solid. The T3X Arctic is a very neat option, but availability is not consistent and it is one of their more expensive models.

I would like someone to put a bug in Tikka's ear about a GP version. If they offered a light profile barrel, with a belled shoulder and 5/8x24 threading, somewhere between 16"-18"in length, extended 20 MOA 1913 rail, using their excellent CTR magazine and bottom metal they would really have a hot setup.
 
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4/9/2018 3:57 PM
 

I'm back form a weekend junket and still looking/deciding. I did look at Tikka especially the T3 Arctic. right in the ball park of what I am looking for except for the weight. Put a synthetic stock on it or somehow shave off at least a pound at it would be just right. It is almost 1.5 pounnds heavier than a Ruger GSR (synthetic) with about the same stuff. I'll just keep factoring in the particulars and see what shifts to the top.

 
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4/10/2018 10:16 PM
 
Your welcome to try out my old Marlin and Winchester 30-30's. I e got one of the Winchester 30-30 trappers as well.

I've got an Ruger GSR your welcome to run as well but it's left handed.

Like others have mentioned the Ruger GSR and American in 308 or the 7.62x39 version are options.

Beside the CZ 527 there's an newer offering CZ has in their 557 series. It's call the CZ 557 Range. It was their submission to the Canadian Ranger contract for their Arctic or bush rifle. It has detach mag and is in 308 and has irons that come with it.

For the money it's going to be difficult to beat the practicality of the Ruger American in 7.62x39 or something like an Marlin 30-30 or 30-30 youth. Those two will easily be the most cost effective on the price of the rifle and ammo.

 
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4/10/2018 11:12 PM
 
Hey. I forgot I had a little Marlin 30-30 in stainless, I just found it.

If you want to give it a spin your welcome to it. I'm not using it for an forseeable time so if you want to try before you buy and give it a trial I can send it down to you. It's cheaper than buying something and deciding you don't like it.

Your call
 
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