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Old 11-22-2013, 02:19 AM
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AceArcher AceArcher is offline
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Default Caliber opinions

Gonna be picking up a rifle here in the near future to shoot some myself and as sort of a "start" big boy gun for my son to grow into.

I want a tack driver.... (not so much worried about super long distance but able to split hairs with it out to 250 would be great)

Want a small caliber with pretty minimal recoil... want him to not be so scared of the guns kick that he develops bad shooting habits.

I learned how to shoot a rifle on a .308 as a young boy... it took me a long time to unlearn some of the bad flinching habits that gave me.

Short list right now is;

1) 22-250 (know it's a tack driver.. and know its low recoil etc... little worried that it might not quite be "enough" for a deer)

2) 25-06 Thinking this might be the perfect one.. with lighter bullets you can have the "super high" velocity of the 22-250, but you can load it with heavier bullets as well. good prices on ammo.... not so sure about recoil on it...

3) 243 strong contender here as well... same pro's and con's as the 25-06

4) 257 roberts... super tack driver, lethal on deer, might have a heck of a kick and ammo is $$$$

thought / opinions / etc...

whatever caliber i get it's gonna be a pretty basic setup... black plastic stock etc... prob chrome barrel & action ... thinking something along the lines of a straight 4x scope on it.

Alright you gun experts steer me in the right direction here.
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Old 11-22-2013, 02:43 AM
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Our family are big fans of the 6.5's: 260 Rem and 6.5x284. We've owned .243's and 25-06's and .223's. The ability to shoot high BC 140 grain bullets is what sets the 6.5's apart. Yet in a moderate range hunting role, 120 grain bullets will perform very well with a tad less recoil. A light 25-06 is still going to have some recoil with a 115-120 bullet and a full power hunting load. A 260 Rem with a 120 grain bullet will have less recoil.

With light bullets, the 25-06 never quite lived up to its promise. It was super accurate with 100-117 grain bullets, but not so much with 85 grainers.

There is really no wrong choice from .243 to .270, even perhaps a 7mm-08. The tradeoffs are subtle. They will all kill deer dead, dead, dead.
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Old 11-22-2013, 05:20 AM
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I have bought all my kids 7mm-08's as starter guns. Very light recoil, flat shooting, commonly available in stores and versatile with a wide selection of bullet weights. I usually load them with 140 grain bullets but you can go lighter or heavier. Also, if the recoil is to much with standard loads, reduced loads are available over the counter.

I also own a .243 and I like that round but it's limited in ammo. I use it with 100 grain bullets for deer but that is about the biggest you can get for it. The 22-250 has more choices but it's not nearly as versatile as the 7mm-08. I've never liked the 25-06 as I consider it more of a plains round and the .257 Roberts is one of those rounds that HAS to be reloaded for.
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:06 AM
hawgsquatch hawgsquatch is offline
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I have hunted exclusively with a 7mm-08 since 93. I traded in a 257 Roberts that I had lost a few deer with. It turns out the silvertips I was using were probably the problem. I have killed several bears to 300 lbs here and two cow elk and one bull. It shoots flat with no noticable recoil and nosler makes great bullets for it. I shoot a Browning BLR, and my daughters both have Stevens model 200's. They all shoot this round well.
We shoot long distances here on oak mountains across creeks and stuff. This round has deer killing energy out to three hundred yards easily.
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:38 AM
bigdaddy bigdaddy is offline
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Default 7mm-08

I have the tc venture in 7mm-08 and the gun is extremly accurate and very comftorsble to shoot,I own several remingtons also and a few marlin's and the tc is by far my go to rifle.
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:43 AM
mailreg mailreg is offline
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300 WSM, even with a bad shot you won't lose any deer and they don't go far!
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:47 AM
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I started with a .22-250 and I've killed truck loads of deer with one. I have never lost a wounded deer either. But 90% were head/neck shots
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:49 AM
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i have a Ruger 270 that my 6 year old nephew shoots when i bring him does not kick at all an it has the accu trigger on it witch is a great way for them to learn good habits because it dont take much an that buullet is flying i taught him how to shoot on this gun an he is a great shot now
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Old 11-22-2013, 08:26 AM
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I'm a fan of the 257 Roberts and also 25-06
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Old 11-22-2013, 08:50 AM
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7mm-08. Got one for wife few years ago (thompson center) and I liked it so much I got myself one, very little recoil, and tack driver
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Old 11-22-2013, 09:05 AM
Mr. Evan Mr. Evan is offline
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no matter what caliber you get, you might want to go wih a wooden stock if recoil is an issue
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Old 11-22-2013, 09:16 AM
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7mm-08 or .243
We have both and smack them on a regular basis with no problems. Accurate, and little recoil.
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Old 11-22-2013, 10:04 AM
youmyboyblue youmyboyblue is offline
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I grew up shooting a 6mm, my nephew is 6 and has been shooting it for over a year now. Great gun.
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Old 11-22-2013, 10:11 AM
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i have a 270 wsm... with the choices you gave... i'd def go with the 243... you will be fine either way though!
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Old 11-22-2013, 03:11 PM
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I shoot a model 70 Winchester .270 and enjoy it, my buddy shoots Winchester model 70 coyote 300 wsm and thats one sweet ace rifle which is nick named "the hand of god" from an aoudad hunt a couple of years ago and I would really like to get a .260
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Old 11-22-2013, 04:58 PM
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6mm is definitely a fine little shooter, shot plenty deer with one in La & Tex, flat out shoots. Great for a kid and nice for a adult.
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Old 11-22-2013, 04:58 PM
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Like many have said already the 7mm-08 is superb. Low recoil, super accurate, and a killing machine. I like a 140grn Nosler Accubond bullet over 41grns of IMR4895. Shoots great in mine and my brother's rifles.
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Old 11-22-2013, 05:02 PM
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No matter what you choose make sure it has a quality recoil pad not just a standard rubber butt plate. A good recoil pad will make a light recoiler almost unnoticible.
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Old 11-23-2013, 03:40 PM
tigerhead tigerhead is offline
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Out of the calibers you mentioned, I would go with the 243. It has a light recoil, is definitely a tack driver, will kill any deer, and ammo is common. When I say common, I am talking about a situation where you forget your ammo at home and have to shop in a small town Walmart or worse.

The 25 06 is a great one also. For an adult, it is light recoil, and with the lighter bullets is even older kid friendly. Ammo is not as common.

I have a 257 Roberts and love it. But as someone mentioned, you definitely have to reload for it. The factory ammo is all 117 or 120 grain bullets and it just won't shoot flat with that heavy of a bullet. Shoot 85 grain handloads and you get great performance.

The 22-250 would be my last choice. Tack driver for sure, but light super fast bullet will blow up on a twig and ammo isn't that common.

Having said all that, I have never owned or shot the 7mm 08, but without a doubt it gets more mention than any other round as a great kid caliber. And it's got enough umph to be a life long round. Definitely worth considering.
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Old 11-23-2013, 05:03 PM
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Just my 2 cents. Something no one has mentioned is stock fit for a younger shooter. If you get one that fits perfect now in a few years it will be too small for him. I would consider either one that he could pass down or one that is common and you can replace the stock on. Also on fit if the rifle has too much drop it will tend to recoil up. Stock fit is very important and often overlooked.
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