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#437360 - 10/08/07 10:48 PM Youngun First Rifle Help?
gil1
12 Point


Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 6349
Loc: Nashville, TN

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My nephew is 11, has gotten his Hunter's Ed. Certification, and is dying to hunt. I've taken him with me hunting a few times, and we've shot his pellet gun a bunch. It's time to step up and start practicing with a deer rifle.

There are so many other things vying for his time. I need something reliable but inexpensive because I have no idea if soccer, girls, video games or whatever will win the battle. His father, my brother, doesn't hunt, and I only get a few windows every year to feed his hunting fire. Unfortunatley, I can't break the bank on this one.

His 12th birthday is November 4th, and I'm stepping up to the plate by buying him his first deer rifle. I didn't start hunting until my late 20s (with a 30.06), so I don't have the knowledge to buy something. I need someone to hold my hand with caliber, model, scope, heck everything. Please help a young would-be hunter out with suggestions. Thanks so much.
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It is not the killing ...; it is the contest of skill and cunning. The true hunter counts his achievement in proportion to the effort involved and the fairness of the sport.

Dr. Saxton Pope

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#437367 - 10/08/07 10:52 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: gil1]
Happy Birthday big 8's in Weakley county
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.243 in a h and r
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#437373 - 10/08/07 10:56 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: big 8's in Weakley county]
Tnyoteboy
6 Point


Registered: 11/01/06
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Loc: Bartlett

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243 would not be a bad place to start, or a 30/30. H&R makes a good product and can be sent back for additional barrels.
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#437388 - 10/08/07 11:23 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Tnyoteboy]
megalomaniac
12 Point


Registered: 10/28/05
Posts: 5235
Loc: Mississippi

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gil,

I've got 3 kids who will be up and coming hunters, and I've thought about this extensively. I personally started with a .243 at age 11. I wasn't very good a tracking deer, and the first few deer I shot with that .243 did require tracking jobs.

I like the concept of putting a little large hole in the deer, and I also like the concept of having a rifle that a kid can grow up with and continue using throughout his/ her lifetime if they so choose.

That being said, I decided on a 7-08 to start my kids out with. Granted, I'll be handloading very mild loads with 120 grainers only going around 2200 fps, so recoil should be negligible. Even if you don't handload, an 11 yr old should be able to handle the recoil of standard loads in the 7-08.

I'd lean towards a lightly used savage, of course you'll probably need to replace the stock for a youth model unless he's a really big kid. You should be able to find one for around $250-350.

For a scope, I'd lean towards one of the burris fullfield II's. Again, I'd pick one up lightly used, should be around $135-150.

That's a combo he'll be able to use forever, and if he doesn't want it, you could resell for what you have into it.

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#437401 - 10/08/07 11:37 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: megalomaniac]
Tikkabuck
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Registered: 07/05/05
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I've got 3 boys all started with a .308,in hind sight if I had it to do all over again they would have been toting a 7mm-08. You can buy over the counter loads from 120 gr all the way up to 175's and recoil is next to nothing.

This will get me in trouble. I think the 243 is a great round for kids that get alot of range time and can place their shots well.
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#437405 - 10/08/07 11:40 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: megalomaniac]
Model70Man
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Registered: 09/30/05
Posts: 6877
Loc: Knoxville, TN

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The 243 is an excellent deer caliber. Very light recoil and fun to shoot. I'd look into a Browning A-bolt Micro and for a scope a Leupold VX-I 3-9x40 with Talley mounts. The 95 grain Fusion is perfect for deer.
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#437572 - 10/09/07 07:27 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Model70Man]
vonb
6 Point


Registered: 12/01/05
Posts: 816
Loc: TN

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I would go with something like a Stevens 200 in either a .243 or 7mm-08. You should be able to find this gun for around $260-$300. I would then put something like a Nikon Buckmasters or Bushnell scope on it. It's an accurate little gun and it won't break the bank.

If your nephew decides not to take up hunting, you can usually get rid of this gun fairly easily as many competition shooters use them for their action and usually re-barrel them themselves.

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#437613 - 10/09/07 07:54 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: vonb]
Kimberman
10 Point


Registered: 10/30/05
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Loc: Knoxville

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I would split the difference and get a 260 if you handload. If you dont handload go with the .243 or 7mm-08. 257 Roberts, 250 Savage, or 6.5x55 are all easy on the shoulder as well.
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#437898 - 10/09/07 10:32 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: gil1]
Bambi Buster
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This question is asked multiple times on multiple forums every year. Usually overlooked in the ensuing discussion about calibers is the fact that the FIT of the firearm to a young and/or small-statured shooter is at least as important as the caliber. If the shooter cannot hold the rifle comfortably and properly, he/she will be inaccurate and will likely be punished far worse by whatever recoil is present than would be the case with a properly fitting rifle.
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#438009 - 10/09/07 11:31 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: big 8's in Weakley county]
Buckblaster
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Registered: 10/04/06
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Loc: bradley county,TN/Lancaster,SC

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 Originally Posted By: big 8's in Weakley county
.243 in a h and r



Ditto. I started out with a youth model h&r handi rifle .243


killed a bunch and big deer with it.


Edited by Bassfishing Deerblaster (10/09/07 11:31 AM)
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#438053 - 10/09/07 12:03 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Buckblaster]
FULLDRAWXX75
12 Point


Registered: 01/29/07
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Loc: Adirondack Mtns, NY

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First things to keep in mind as already mentioned fit and reaction factor. Meaning, if the recoil hurts or causes negitive reaction from the shooter, the interest level drops real quick like.

My first gun was a 12 ga. single barrel, light weight and kicked like a mule. (it felt like it back then) I didn't like it much, but if I was gonna hunt it was that or nothing.
May have done more shooting earlier on if the thought of getting kicked didn't enter the picture.

It has to enjoyable not a pain.

The choice of the .243 or 7mm-08, I personally would lean towards the 7mm-08.


FDXX75
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#438141 - 10/09/07 12:52 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: FULLDRAWXX75]
.444 Marlin
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Loc: Benton, Polk Co. Tenn.

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.243 winchester in a H&R single shot like everyone else said.
Or if you can get your hands on it then get you a 6.8SPC or maybe a .30-30
The .30-30 has been a wicked starter gun for decades.
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#438185 - 10/09/07 01:21 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: .444 Marlin]
gil1
12 Point


Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 6349
Loc: Nashville, TN

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Did I mention that you guys rock?
This gives me a ton to think about. Research time. He's going to be a happy camper. Thanks all, and I'll be checking in to see if the discussion continues.
_________________________
It is not the killing ...; it is the contest of skill and cunning. The true hunter counts his achievement in proportion to the effort involved and the fairness of the sport.

Dr. Saxton Pope

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#438759 - 10/09/07 06:55 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Buckblaster]
stik
"Popcorn"
18 Point


Registered: 03/12/99
Posts: 21393
Loc: lenoir city,tn

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most lost deer shot with a rifle were shot with a 243 or 30-30. the 243 is a capable gun in an EXPERIENCED shooters hands. the 30-30 makes a good emergency boat paddle. as already has been mentioned, the 7mm-08 is the perfect youth caliber.
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#438832 - 10/09/07 07:20 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: stik]
Model70Man
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Registered: 09/30/05
Posts: 6877
Loc: Knoxville, TN

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I get a kick out of reading some of the posts about the 243. \:\) Some say it's a great caliber for deer and others say it doesn't have enough knock down power and others say you have to have a "perfect" shot to drop a deer or it will run off and die.

I saw a buck that ran over 300 yds that was shot 3 times with a 300 WSM, 2 "perfect" shots in the boiler room and the 3rd shot back in the liver as it was running.

Hunting happens and sometimes you have to track your game. Not every shot is going to drop a deer right in its tracks regardless of caliber.
_________________________
Winchester Model 70 Stainless Left Hand .270 Win.
McMillan Edge
Talley Lightweights
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#439019 - 10/09/07 08:15 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Model70Man]
TRHC
4 Point


Registered: 08/27/07
Posts: 131
Loc: AL

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I debated this exact scenario all summer. I settled on trying some .308 Managed Recoil loads from Remington. In my Encore, felt recoil was very light so I let my son give it a try. To my surprise, he fell in love with MY rifle. I have since cut down the stock and installed a Sims pad. On our first real range session, he was stacking bullet holes on top of each other at 50 yards. Out of the first box of ammo, I only got in 4 shots. He wanted to keep shooting. I am elated that the managed recoil loads worked out the way they did. Now, he can graduate up to full house loads as he gets bigger. I'd definitely recommend these loads for small statured or recoil sensitive shooters. BTW, my son is six and weighs less than 60 pounds. Good luck. TRHC.
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#439054 - 10/09/07 08:22 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: TRHC]
RUGER Administrator
Bambi Killa
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Registered: 11/19/99
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I started my son out with a Remington Model 7 youth rifle chambered in the .260.
He is a rather large kid for his age, but yet his arms are short so the fit of that rifle was dang near perfect.
I agree fit of the rifle is critical.
With that being said, through a few years of experience with it the accuracy "grouping" of the rifle leaves a little to be desired and Dr. Dickel told me to go with the Ruger and I didn't listen. \:\)
Plus they think alot of them $$$ wise.

I have hunted with the 7mm08 and it will definately put 'em down.
Not sure how the recoil of the .308 would be out of a youth type gun, but I know out of an encore it kicks less than his .260.

Fit of the rifle to the child and a good amount of range time before hunting will result in lots of good results no matter the caliber.
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#439092 - 10/09/07 08:30 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: TRHC]
7mm08
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Registered: 09/12/07
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7mm-08, but then again I am partial. Shells are more expensive and if cost is a concern then go with a 308.


From a guy named Sundra in Buckmaster's website on 30-30 and 7mm-08.
"Should anyone think that qualifying my cartridge choice based on eastern hunting involves too much compromising, consider that even the least potent of this trio delivers more than 1,500 foot-pounds of energy at 300 yards. Is that adequate? Well, the .30-30 Win, a cartridge that has undoubtedly accounted for more white-tailed deer than any other in the 111 years itís been around, doesnít deliver that much punch at 100 yards (actually, itís at about 80 yards that the .30-30 drops below that). I donít know who or how they came up with a minimum of 1,000 foot-pounds as the yardstick for lethality on deer-size game, but would anyone argue that inside 80 yards, the .30-30 is not one lethal deer-harvesting machine?

Any doubts as to the capabilities of the 7mm-08 Rem should be dispelled when comparing it to the legendary 7x57 Mauser and the near mystical lethality attributed to it (Iíll spare you the ďKaramojoĒ Bell elephant stories). That formidable reputation was based on a conservative 175-grain round-nose factory load at around 2,450 fps. I say ďconservativeĒ because in deference to whatever Model 93 Mausers are still floating around, 7x57 factory ammo has always been loaded to pressure levels that are about 10 percent less than, say, the .308 Win or 7mm-08 Rem.

Once our ammo makers got around to loading lighter and more versatile spitzer bullets in the 7x57, typical 140-grain factory loads exited around 2,660 fps, but thatís still at the lower pressure limit. The 7mm-08, on the other hand, sends that same 140-grain bullet anywhere from 2,770 to 2,860 fps. Bottom line: Whatever the 7x57 can do ballistically, the 7mm-08 can match. Again, though, thatís comparing factory loads. The fact that the volume of the Mauser case is virtually identical to that of the .308 Win means that handloaders can equal 7mm-08 performance if using the same pressure levels, which is safe to do in any modern bolt-action rifle.

The most popular and best-suited deer load among the 7mm-08 factory offerings are the various 140-grain polycarbonate-tipped bullets, which is what Iíd normally use in a handload. Exiting at a realistic 2,800 fps (22-inch barrel) and zeroed dead-on at 200 yards, my point of impact at 250 yards is minus 3 inches. At 300 yards, POI is minus 7.3 inches, retained energy is a hefty 1,600 foot-pounds, and retained velocity is still an impressive 2,300 fps.

Thatís at 300 yards! Even cutting that back to 250, how many whitetails east of the Mississippi are taken at ranges in excess of that? And remember, weíre not including beanfield hunters who deliberately post themselves on stands where theyíre actually hoping for a 300- or 400-yard shot. I wish I had some statistical data to back me up, but Iíll bet that more than 95 percent of all eastern whitetails harvested are taken inside 250 yards. And at that distance, the 7mm-08 is more than enough gun. Itís also flat-shooting enough that hitting out to that range is no problem . . . on paper anyway. The real world is something else again. You need a real steady rest to make a 250-yard shot, and bench-steady shooting platforms are scarce in deer country!

Aside from its more than adequate ballistics, I like the 7mm-08 because the typical guns chambered for it are carbines. Since it has ballistics to spare, the loss of a few feet per second in exchange for a 20- or 22-inch barrel is no big thing. Iím not a fan of ultralight rifles, but for deer hunting I can appreciate a short, fast-handling rig that with scope, sling and a full magazine weighs around 81/2 pounds. As such, Iím looking at 14.7 foot-pounds of recoil. Putting that in a relative context, a same weight .30-06 backs up to the tune of nearly 20 foot-pounds, pushing a 165-grain bullet.

Now, Iím not particularly recoil-shy Ė in my line of work, I canít afford to be Ė but after a couple hundred-thousand rounds, you come to appreciate cartridges that are efficient, i.e., have all the performance needed to get the job done under any likely circumstance, without subjecting one to unnecessary recoil. In that respect, Iím like a silhouette shooter. I want a cartridge that will reliably knock down that most distant target with a minimum of recoil. Trust me on this: The less recoil, the better one can shoot . . . under any circumstance.
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#439186 - 10/09/07 08:51 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: big 8's in Weakley county]
statelineRUT
10 Point


Registered: 12/07/02
Posts: 3255
Loc: Michie, TN

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 Originally Posted By: big 8's in Weakley county
.243 in a h and r



Ditto. I have the same rifle that I use to this day. Never had a deer go overe 20 yards with this rifle. With a 95 grain bullet he will be just fine. Always shoot for the lungs and put meat in the freezer. Marlin is now doing the trigger work from the factory and they are about 3 pounds and very crisp. For around $220 this a good rifle for the woods of TN.
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#439287 - 10/09/07 09:27 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Buckblaster]
kasey
8 Point


Registered: 12/09/04
Posts: 1899
Loc: Tn,sevier Co.

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marlin 30-30
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#439473 - 10/09/07 10:51 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Buckblaster]
Tiny
16 Point


Registered: 02/09/02
Posts: 17786
Loc: Knoxville

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Just a couple of thoughts

1-Combo Rifle/Shotgun/ML from H&R or Rossi.

2- If your considering a Remington youth rifle look for/at the 700 SPS Youth model. Don't know if they were on sale at the time or not but the nearby BPS had them for a good bit less than the Model 7
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#440022 - 10/10/07 10:54 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Tiny]
Buckblaster
10 Point


Registered: 10/04/06
Posts: 3896
Loc: bradley county,TN/Lancaster,SC

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Just for some of the people who dont like .243 for deer and say they dont have enough knockdown power. MY dad years ago bought a ruger M77 6mm to replace his marlin 336c .35 rem . He has hunted with that gun for a LONG time and has probably killed 150 deer with it. He can remember losing 3 with marginal shots. 1 of those was hit in the guts, the other he shot running and hit it in the back shoulder.

3 out of 150 aint bad if you think about it.

6mm and .243 are basically the same thing except the 6mm is a bit hotter in the ballistics department than the .243



If you ask me it is better to use smaller calibers and practice good marksmenship than use some cannon of a gun and have the idea "well, I hit it terrible but it made a big enough hole so I blowed his guts out, we can track him" thats crazy

Especially when getting a child there first gun. You want to teach them good marksmenship and ethics. You dont him want to develop a flinching habit that is hard to get rid of.
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#440035 - 10/10/07 11:03 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Buckblaster]
Buckblaster
10 Point


Registered: 10/04/06
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Loc: bradley county,TN/Lancaster,SC

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A while back I took a big buck that I had shot to the taxidermist. I was 10. The taxidermist said, what did you shoot him with? My dad told him a .243 and he wondered if we shot all of our deer in the head. My dad then told him he had been hunting with a 6mm for years. He was astonished that we hunted ith such 'light' rifles. I had seen about 10 deer he shot and all of them were gut shot. He referred to a gutshot as behind the shoulder. Guessed what calber rifle he shot? You guessed it, a .300 weatherby mag. Not hatin on you rum shooters though.

Edited by Bassfishing Deerblaster (10/10/07 11:04 AM)
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#440069 - 10/10/07 11:31 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Buckblaster]
Hillbilly Hunter
Killbilly
16 Point


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I started on a Marlin 30-30. I still have it. My kids will not cut thier teeth on a Lever action because they are way too dangerous for a kid. When you work the action, it cocks it with no safety. Mine will use a bolt action 7mm-08.
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#440240 - 10/10/07 01:18 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: RUGER]
Bambi Buster
14 Point


Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 9113
Loc: Middle Tennessee

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 Originally Posted By: RUGER
I started my son out with a Remington Model 7 youth rifle chambered in the .260.
He is a rather large kid for his age, but yet his arms are short so the fit of that rifle was dang near perfect.
I agree fit of the rifle is critical.......

.....Fit of the rifle to the child and a good amount of range time before hunting will result in lots of good results no matter the caliber.


Excellent post based on actual experience. Thanks Ruger
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#440625 - 10/10/07 04:52 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Hillbilly Hunter]
skynimrod
10 Point


Registered: 11/10/06
Posts: 2543
Loc: Bellevue Tn

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 Originally Posted By: Hillbilly Hunter
I started on a Marlin 30-30. I still have it. My kids will not cut thier teeth on a Lever action because they are way too dangerous for a kid. When you work the action, it cocks it with no safety. Mine will use a bolt action 7mm-08.


Marlin fixed that
Start em out with open sights
then move on to scope, let the shooter decide on the caliber after shooting different calibers


Edited by skynimrod (10/10/07 04:53 PM)
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#447630 - 10/14/07 05:12 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Buckblaster]
deerslayeror2
6 Point


Registered: 09/09/07
Posts: 663
Loc: knox

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rossi has 22 cal 20 gag and 243 cal in one
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#452062 - 10/16/07 06:33 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: Buckblaster]
solodren
8 Point


Registered: 09/20/07
Posts: 1179
Loc: nashville tn 37214

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you can choose something that wont outgrow him soon. I have a 270 and wanted to see if my 9 year old would like hunting picked up some managed recoil from remington 243 has around 10ft lbs of kick the 270 has 21 and the managed recoil has 9ft lbs didnt even have to adjust scope he shot with no complaints if youre thinkig longterm this is the way to go!!!
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#452741 - 10/16/07 11:38 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: 7mm08]
infoman jr.
10 Point


Registered: 10/05/03
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Loc: Elizabethtown, KY

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My vote is for a .243 M700 Remington. I used one of these from age 12 - 20, and I lost fewer deer with that caliber during those years than I have when I started using my .270 (I'm 23 now). That being said I'll never shoot another core lokt bullet. The .243 has very little recoil, and its accuracy inspires confidence. Mine took deer all the way out to 200 yards.
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#452757 - 10/16/07 11:55 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: infoman jr.]
.444 Marlin
16 Point


Registered: 08/10/02
Posts: 15458
Loc: Benton, Polk Co. Tenn.

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Handi Rifle .243 or 7mm-08
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#452760 - 10/17/07 12:01 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: .444 Marlin]
smstone22
16 Point


Registered: 01/11/04
Posts: 16954
Loc: Allardt, TN

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Get him something nice. Model 7 in 7mm-08, 243, or 260 are all great choices. Theres a Model 7 .260 at Buckhorns in Oneida right now for 500.
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#452798 - 10/17/07 03:48 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: smstone22]
TNhunter
TnDeer Old Timer
10 Point


Registered: 11/01/99
Posts: 4395
Loc: Murfreesboro, TN, Rutherford

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.243 or 7mm-08 - and one of the least expensive guns will be the single shot H&R/NEF. Stick a Leupold Rifleman 3x9 (or VX-1) on it with some Warne rings. Also get a GOOD set of shooting sticks.
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#454822 - 10/17/07 09:56 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: TNhunter]
eightpointer
14 Point


Registered: 08/17/02
Posts: 8699
Loc: Birchwood, TN

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 Originally Posted By: TNhunter
.243 or 7mm-08 - and one of the least expensive guns will be the single shot H&R/NEF. Stick a Leupold Rifleman 3x9 (or VX-1) on it with some Warne rings. Also get a GOOD set of shooting sticks.

Does Wal-Mart have that set up? What's the cheapest price I could find one for and where? Thanks..........

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#455118 - 10/18/07 05:50 AM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: eightpointer]
statelineRUT
10 Point


Registered: 12/07/02
Posts: 3255
Loc: Michie, TN

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 Originally Posted By: eightpointer
 Originally Posted By: TNhunter
.243 or 7mm-08 - and one of the least expensive guns will be the single shot H&R/NEF. Stick a Leupold Rifleman 3x9 (or VX-1) on it with some Warne rings. Also get a GOOD set of shooting sticks.

Does Wal-Mart have that set up? What's the cheapest price I could find one for and where? Thanks..........


Here ya go http://www.thegunsource.com/store/item.aspx?PID=6827

Whatever you do stay away from the superlight NEF models. They are very finicky. Get the blued/walnut and you will be fine.


Edited by statelineRUT (10/18/07 05:51 AM)
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For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:6

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#459007 - 10/20/07 07:55 PM Re: Youngun First Rifle Help? [Re: statelineRUT]
eightpointer
14 Point


Registered: 08/17/02
Posts: 8699
Loc: Birchwood, TN

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Got one of em today at Sportsmans Warehouse. Great place and very helpful folks.
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