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Hard Times Rifles.
Open Source Survival site ^ | June 10, 2012 | Brother Rat

Posted on 06/11/2012 8:27:39 AM PDT by Lowell1775

Well the Big Brown Truck of happiness, dropped off the scope and rings I ordered a while ago. This is what I settled on for the Hard times rifle in the optics department, based on the following Philosophy of the Modern Longhunter and anticipated uses/needs.

Function and Feature priority

A manual action rifle, capable of engaging small game up to White Tailed Deer sized medium game at 25-500 yards.

Magazine or stripper clip fed

Mid range optic capable

Back up Iron sights standard

An easily procurable caliber with lots of reload data

Under 8lb with optic and magazine

Low recoil

Proven action design

Capable of homestead defense in a pinch

What we settled on for the platform was the outstanding CZ 550 rifle, in the FS or Mannlicher Stock variant. The caliber is .243 Winchester.

The optic choice took me several months, trying to decide in the end between Burris, Leupold and Nikon. The Leupold scope won out, the VX-3 1.5-5x to be exact. Its small size fits the rifles profile and shape well. The scope is typical of Leupold in being extremely clear and bright. On 1.5x it is most suitable for close quarters defense if needed and the 5x gives me enough confidence to engage marauding Coyotes out to 500M. I chose the German #4 reticule, having not used one in the past, time at the range this weekend will determine if I like it as much as I think I will.

I mounted the Leupold in Talley CZ specific quick release rings (This was not an outwardly frugal choice, but given the old world quality of rifle and the amount spent on glass I decided to “Buy once, Cry once”). These rings give me the ability to remove the scope in about 15 seconds and go to Irons.

All up weight with sling and 4 rounds of .243 s 8lbs / 1 oz! This is the same as the Ruger Gunsite with sling and empty magazine with no optic or rail! This is an accurate, fast and reliable practical rifle that won’t wear you down. It hits harder and further than the average 5.56 “assault rifle”, and with more magnification would be keeping up with most .308win bolt guns out to 800M.

If your survival plans are concerned more with having multiple use tools than fighting pitched gun battles with hordes of mutant biker zombie U.N Troops, then I highly recommend looking at CZ rifles and Leupold scopes to build your Hard-Times-Rifle.


TOPICS: Hobbies; Military/Veterans; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: banglist; cz; prepping; rifles; ruger
What's your flavor?

The author has a different take than usual on a "Hard Times" rifle. Good video on a CZ 550 in 243 and a Ruger 10/22 both kitted out for adult sized problems.

Both good ideas for arming yourself without spending $2,500 on a black rifle and optics that make you stand out like Darth Vader at a Cub Scout meeting.

The CZ550 has a barrel length full stock...it is so beautiful it makes my teeth hurt!

More at http://www.opensourcesurvival.com/.

The vids are about 1/2 way down the page.

1 posted on 06/11/2012 8:27:46 AM PDT by Lowell1775
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To: Lowell1775

CZ makes excellent rifles, although, in addition to easy to acquire ammunition, you should also consider how easy it is to find parts. CZs aren’t as popular in the US as your typical Winchesters, Kimbers, etc. Although the CZ 500 uses a Mauser M98 like action, it isn’t a match to the Mauser so you can’t just swap parts from a Mauser. That isn’t saying I wouldn’t buy one, just a consideration for the ‘hard times’ criteria.


2 posted on 06/11/2012 8:39:47 AM PDT by mnehring
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To: Lowell1775

I bought a .243 Winchester at a gun show this past winter in Springfield, MO. It is the Ranger model with a lower cost wood stock.
I mounted a Bushnell 3-10 X 50 scope which is plenty big and bright.

I don’t think the original owner fired the rifle more than five times. There are no scratches or dings in the wood or on the blue steel.


3 posted on 06/11/2012 8:43:55 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: Lowell1775

For a “Hard Times” rifle I’d only consider calibers where ammunition would be obtainable. To me, that means eeither .30-06 or .308 Win, which would be available because of .30-06’s popularity, and .308 Winchester’s military cousin the 7.62x51mm NATO.

.243 Winchester is a great hunting round, but not a caliber you’ll easily find or be able to trade for. It’s nice to plan to do your own reloading, but if you are forced to relocate, you’re not going to pack you Dillon press with you.


4 posted on 06/11/2012 8:48:43 AM PDT by Yo-Yo
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To: Lowell1775

The deer will be long gone before you are able to shoot one. Probably three weeks, certainly three months.

Try a pellet gun with 5,000 rounds (20 bucks?) for shooting birds and the odd rabbit or squirrel.

The guys with large calibre muzzle loaders, muskets or rifles, will continue to shoot long after your ammo has run out. .54 calibre flint lock for instance. Large calibres for defense and capable of being used as shot guns.


5 posted on 06/11/2012 9:05:13 AM PDT by buffaloguy
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To: Yo-Yo

“.243 Winchester is a great hunting round, but not a caliber you’ll easily find or be able to trade for.”

Interesting, down here in Texas I have never seen a sporting goods store or Wal-Mart that does not stock .243 ammo. Of course nothing is as plentiful as .223 or .22 LR.

One of the most accurate rifles I have is a Howa .243 with a Leopold Mark IV optic. I have taken many deer, sheep, and goats with it and never had to take a second shot.


6 posted on 06/11/2012 9:05:35 AM PDT by Gabrial (The nightmare will continue as long as the nightmare is in the White House)
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To: Yo-Yo
Agreed.

FTA:

An easily procurable caliber with lots of reload data

For me that would be .308 for that CZ rifle. The .243 is fine, but not that popular or common.

7 posted on 06/11/2012 9:10:24 AM PDT by MileHi ( "It's coming down to patriots vs the politicians." - ovrtaxt)
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To: Gabrial

.243’s are amazingly accurate. I’d love to get one but have my heart set on an M1 Garand.

On another note I brought home my grandfather’s 12 gauge shotgun this past weekend. It’s hard to read the maker but I think it’s Weston Arms. Year: 1910


8 posted on 06/11/2012 9:11:26 AM PDT by TheRhinelander
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To: Lowell1775

Try this on for size. http://www.ruger.com/products/gunsiteScoutRifle/models.html


9 posted on 06/11/2012 9:12:55 AM PDT by gc4nra (This tag line protected by Kimber and the First Amendment!)
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To: Gabrial

.243’s are amazingly accurate. I’d love to get one but have my heart set on an M1 Garand.

On another note I brought home my grandfather’s 12 gauge shotgun this past weekend. It’s hard to read the maker but I think it’s Weston Arms. Year: 1910


10 posted on 06/11/2012 9:12:58 AM PDT by TheRhinelander
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To: Lowell1775
Photobucket
11 posted on 06/11/2012 9:22:50 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

Now you’re talking! Or should I say showing?

Power in between 7.62 X 39 and 308, excellent ammo availability, no magazines or clips, can be “topped-off” while shooting. Light, fast handling, excellent balance.

Or.... $80 SKS in 7.62 X 39 with Williams Fire Sights.


12 posted on 06/11/2012 9:34:24 AM PDT by CPO retired
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

And the ammo found everywhere for that rifle, is almost exclusively soft point, perfect for hunting and defense. 30-30 rules,, and is more accurate than most people would ever dream. Mine was built in the 40’s, and is a tackdriver.


13 posted on 06/11/2012 9:45:26 AM PDT by DesertRhino (I was standing with a rifle, waiting for soviet paratroopers, but communists just ran for office.)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER
Win 94 top eject lever, favorite lever gun for down here.
Can't see over 100yds in woods or swampy woods down here, great open sight rifle in 30-30 cal.
14 posted on 06/11/2012 9:58:36 AM PDT by The Cajun (Sarah Palin, Mark Levin......Nuff said.)
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To: The Cajun
It's the same here, palmettos and scrub on the hammocks and the swamps are thick. You need to be able to ID the target and shoot fast, you won't see it for long.

I don't think the average snowbird would know how to handle a palmetto patch, LOL.

15 posted on 06/11/2012 10:21:26 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: Lowell1775

Here in deer country a .243 is a “boy’s gun”.


16 posted on 06/11/2012 10:35:01 AM PDT by Last Dakotan
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To: SWAMPSNIPER
Have a .44 Marlin lever carbine, not a bad 100yd rifle either.
Had to have gunsmithing work done on it to drop the trigger pull from 16 lbs however.
Like you said, ain't many open spots in the swamps/woods, got to keep your eyes moving and look at the ground a lot too, lol.
17 posted on 06/11/2012 10:37:09 AM PDT by The Cajun (Sarah Palin, Mark Levin......Nuff said.)
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To: Lowell1775
Both good ideas for arming yourself without spending $2,500 on a black rifle and optics that make you stand out like Darth Vader at a Cub Scout meeting.

My friend was lamenting that of his guns the closest to an AR was his 30-30, I pointed out that since he can't afford to change that, console himself with the fact that it is a fine rifle and nondescript.

Carrying a sexy AR is like walking down the street with 100s poking out of your shirt pocket, when the law is gone and chaos reigns, it stirs lust in the hearts of individuals who normally would not want to prey on you.

Carrying a Lamborghini in your arms could make you a target for an ambush solely for the rifle, from many people who have no other interest in you.

18 posted on 06/11/2012 10:46:10 AM PDT by ansel12 (Massachusetts Governors, where the GOP now goes for it's Presidential candidates.)
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To: Lowell1775

Little over 20 years ago I made up this scout rifle from a $90.00 FN K-98 Mauser the Israelis had rebarreled to 7.62x51 back in the 1960s.

Casting my own boolits, it is good to go for small game to outsized zombies. For small game, 100 grain boolits at very quite whisper loads at subsonic velocities are accurate out to beyond 50 yards. For large game or the aggressive variety, 200 grain boolits at 2,000 fps are more than adequate. Cast boolits are an overlooked option for most people. but if big brother should suddenly shut down factory ammo or J-word bullets for reloading, cast boolit molds for center fire rifles and handguns could keep one going without a hiccup.

[IMG]http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y92/TANSTAAFL-2/Scout2.jpg[/IMG]

How I did it, skip the MN (which is my dedicated truck gun) and scroll down to the Mauser at link: http://hstrial-rchambers.homestead.com/early.html#


19 posted on 06/11/2012 10:47:34 AM PDT by Sea Parrot (Youth And Brawn Are No Match For Age And Treachery. I'm Old And May Not Fight. I'll Shoot Instead.)
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To: Sea Parrot
Whoops!! Little over 20 years ago I made up this scout rifle from a $90.00 FN K-98 Mauser the Israelis had rebarreled to 7.62x51 (.308) back in the 1960s. Casting my own boolits, it is good to go from small game to outsized zombies. For small game, 100 grain boolits at very quite whisper loads at subsonic velocities, are accurate out to beyond 50 yards. For large game or the aggressive variety, 200 grain boolits at 2,000 fps are more than adequate. Cast boolits are an overlooked option for most people. but if big brother should suddenly shut down factory ammo or J-word bullets for reloading, cast boolit molds for center fire rifles and handguns could keep one going without a hiccup. Photobucket How I did it, skip the MN (which is my dedicated truck gun) and scroll down to the Mauser at link: http://hstrial-rchambers.homestead.com/early.html#
20 posted on 06/11/2012 10:53:51 AM PDT by Sea Parrot (Youth And Brawn Are No Match For Age And Treachery. I'm Old And May Not Fight. I'll Shoot Instead.)
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To: The Cajun

I have a Williams peep sight on the 94. Since I had the lens implant in my right eye I can get a clearer sight picture than was possible for the last 20 years. I have a scope on my 10-22, but I won’t be squirrel hunting with the 30-30.


21 posted on 06/11/2012 10:57:22 AM PDT by SWAMPSNIPER (The Second Amendment, a Matter of Fact, Not a Matter of Opinion)
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To: Sea Parrot

I bought casting equipment that I haven’t used yet because the local gunshop that supplied lead went under. Do you have a favorite online source for lead?


22 posted on 06/11/2012 11:15:09 AM PDT by .45 Long Colt
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To: .45 Long Colt

# 8 shot shotgun shells ... melt the shot, pour the slugs, re insert into the emptied wad and crimp.


23 posted on 06/11/2012 11:16:51 AM PDT by MHGinTN (Being deceived can be cured.)
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To: MHGinTN

Well, that’s easy enough. Thanks for the idea.


24 posted on 06/11/2012 11:24:31 AM PDT by .45 Long Colt
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

CDNN has original walnut(uncheckered) for your .243. $70 if memory serves. Got the same rifle years ago. Tip was warping and making hard contact on the left side of the barrel. Sanded it out to assure the rifle was accurate, but buttpad had issues, so I replaced it. Wonderful dark walnut, as opposed to the see-it-for-a-mile blonde original.


25 posted on 06/11/2012 11:24:47 AM PDT by gundog (Help us, Nairobi-Wan Kenobi...you're our only hope.)
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To: .45 Long Colt

BTW, if you have drill bits and blocks of hardwood, some pretty good slug molds are possible. I’ve been experimenting with various slugs and shot and loads for shells to allow expanding shotgun tube mag capacity. I’ve found that the minimum length for Mossberg and Mav 88 pumps is 2 1/8 inch, to cycle properly. For semi autos with full length lifters, a 2 inch shell will function quite well and even some with 1 3/4 inch if the powder loading and wad packing is done right. I use a roll crimping closure method unless just reloading spent shot shells to their previous standard lengths.


26 posted on 06/11/2012 11:37:55 AM PDT by MHGinTN (Being deceived can be cured.)
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To: ansel12

My “hard times” rifle is an Ishapore Enfield . 7.62 NATO. Cost for a hand select was $110. I put it in a synthetic stock that cost $65 if I remember right.

I had a gunsmith mount a 4 power Simmons on it. Total cost was under $250. I put the difference in to loads of ammo. I can ring an 8” cast iron skillet at 350 yards every time.

Wish I’d bought a dozen of those things.


27 posted on 06/11/2012 11:49:12 AM PDT by Lurker (Violence is rarely the answer. But when it is it is the only answer.)
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To: MHGinTN

Interesting idea. Do you do treat the wood before you pour your lead?

About a year ago I saw a dealer at a Memphis gunshow selling hulls for small shells like you described. I’ve know others to make their own so they could get more shells in the tube but that was the only time I’ve ever seen hulls.

Have you seen any of Dave Canterbury’s Longhunter videos discussing methods for reloading shells in the field?


28 posted on 06/11/2012 11:58:26 AM PDT by .45 Long Colt
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To: gundog

The stock is light colored.
I’m wondering if I could just add a bit of stain...


29 posted on 06/11/2012 12:19:38 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: SWAMPSNIPER
Yup, the peep sight does help a lot with astigmatism, I may have to go to that eventually myself.
The multiple lens effect in the cornea is beginning to bother me a little more every year, especially long range pistol and I can't stand glasses.
When I put on glasses, I have them smudged big time in under 5 minutes.
30 posted on 06/11/2012 12:35:06 PM PDT by The Cajun (Sarah Palin, Mark Levin......Nuff said.)
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To: Gabrial

ammo has local flavor.

in AK, a ton of people like the 35 Whelen.


31 posted on 06/11/2012 12:35:14 PM PDT by TurboZamboni (Looting the future to bribe the present)
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To: .45 Long Colt
Yep. Gave it a try. That's when I decided to get a Lee Loadall II with both 20 and 12 gauge inserts. Costs 75 bucks total and makes the process a lot more enjoyable.

The crucial point is the type of powder and how much. You pretty much use a 209 primer for all the powders because you want a slow burn powder and a fast or hot primer.

I use Hodgdon HS6 powder with CCI 209 primers. I use an overshot card and roll crimp the shells to 2 inches holding 12 #2 buckshot or a slug for my guns.

I test them in a TriStar 12 gauge semi auto and a Mav 88 12 ga pump, and an Akkar 20 sem and a Mav 88 20 gauge pump. The TriStar came with a fake mag extension which I 'reworked' to allow greater capacity. Because of the arthritis in my right wrist (too much tennis in my younger years) I have pistol grip stocks. I also rig an industrial strength velcro strip on the receivers to carry five, six, or seven extra rounds for relaoding, and a similar rig for the stocks. As they say in combat shotgun, if you're not shootin' you better be reloadin'. Hobby stuf don'tchaknow.

32 posted on 06/11/2012 2:04:38 PM PDT by MHGinTN (Being deceived can be cured.)
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To: .45 Long Colt
Yep. Gave it a try. That's when I decided to get a Lee Loadall II with both 20 and 12 gauge inserts. Costs 75 bucks total and makes the process a lot more enjoyable.

The crucial point is the type of powder and how much. You pretty much use a 209 primer for all the powders because you want a slow burn powder and a fast or hot primer.

I use Hodgdon HS6 powder with CCI 209 primers. I use an overshot card and roll crimp the shells to 2 inches holding 12 #2 buckshot or a slug for my guns.

I test them in a TriStar 12 gauge semi auto and a Mav 88 12 ga pump, and an Akkar 20 sem and a Mav 88 20 gauge pump. The TriStar came with a fake mag extension which I 'reworked' to allow greater capacity. Because of the arthritis in my right wrist (too much tennis in my younger years) I have pistol grip stocks. I also rig an industrial strength velcro strip and loops from a bandolier on the receivers to carry five, six, or seven extra rounds for reloading, and a similar rig for the stocks. As they say in combat shotgun, if you're not shootin' you better be reloadin'. Hobby stuff don'tchaknow.

33 posted on 06/11/2012 2:06:10 PM PDT by MHGinTN (Being deceived can be cured.)
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To: SWAMPSNIPER

Here in Central Kentucky, with the hilly terrain and thick underbrush, you are lucky to see a target at more than 50-100 yards. As such, the most popular deer rifles in this area are 30-30’s and SKS’s.


34 posted on 06/11/2012 3:45:02 PM PDT by Stonewall Jackson ("I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy.")
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To: Lowell1775

Probably not wise to discuss what plans you’ve made for trouble in public.


35 posted on 06/11/2012 5:42:24 PM PDT by Secret Agent Man (I can neither confirm or deny that; even if I could, I couldn't - it's classified.)
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To: .45 Long Colt

Have never bought lead alloys online. For smokeless powder loading I use nothing but clip on wheel weights. (the stick on ones are almost pure lead and great for black powder) Air dropped boolits from WW are around 10-12 Brinell hardness, if water dropped they run up to 14-16 BH. when oven tempered and water quenched, run 18-20 BH.

Have you tried local tire shops fir WW? I understand they are selling at about 15-20 bucks for a five gallon bucket of them. Junk yard and recycling centers are another source.

I still have around 6 five gallon buckets of WW and several hundred pounds of ingots cast up.


36 posted on 06/11/2012 7:32:40 PM PDT by Sea Parrot (Youth And Brawn Are No Match For Age And Treachery. I'm Old And May Not Fight. I'll Shoot Instead.)
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To: Lowell1775
Try something new with plenty of flexibility.
Try the Circuit Judge 45LC/410Ga 18.5' Stainless Bl Hardwood Monte Carlo Stk.
37 posted on 06/11/2012 7:51:51 PM PDT by Yosemitest (It's simple, fight or die!)
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To: Yosemitest

Interesting, I think I saw one of those at Bass Pro a couple of weeks ago, interesting piece, might be good for a few laughs.


38 posted on 06/11/2012 8:59:49 PM PDT by West Texas Chuck (Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. That should be a convenience store, not a Government Agency.)
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To: West Texas Chuck
A few laughs, Shall I go on about the many choices a .410 ga and .45 Long Colt rifle has?
39 posted on 06/11/2012 9:51:13 PM PDT by Yosemitest (It's simple, fight or die!)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

Mine was lacquered. If yours is bare wood it’s in serious danger of warping. The fit of the new one is better. I think it was an uncheckered Supergrade stock when the Mdl 70 went away.


40 posted on 06/12/2012 11:05:34 AM PDT by gundog (Help us, Nairobi-Wan Kenobi...you're our only hope.)
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To: gundog

It has a very thin coating on the wood. It’s not bare, but just barely not.


41 posted on 06/12/2012 12:58:48 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: Lowell1775; Squantos; Travis McGee
Both good ideas for arming yourself without spending $2,500 on a black rifle and optics that make you stand out like Darth Vader at a Cub Scout meeting.

I've got just a bit over $400 spent in the build of my most recent *black rifle,* actually more of a green rifle, since it's a pretty close dupilcate of a Canadian Army C8A1 carbine. And so far as looking like Darth vader at a Cub Scout meeting, I'd rather look like Porky Pig in a mosque.


42 posted on 06/12/2012 7:05:59 PM PDT by archy (I'd give my right arm to be ambidextrous!)
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To: Lowell1775

.243 is a fantastic caliber. Savage rifles can take an aftermarket Choate folding stock, producing a 700 yard sniper rifle that can fit into a backpack or valise.


43 posted on 06/13/2012 4:55:08 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: Yo-Yo

In my experience, .243 is available anywhere you can buy the other common rounds such as 30-06, 308, .223, 30-30 etc.


44 posted on 06/13/2012 4:57:44 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

Don’t know if you sit in the rain, have the gun in and out of a safe, etc, but I know mine wasn’t a great stock and suspect that’s why someone sold it...couldn’t get it to zero. Free-floating it fixed that, but it was still visible for miles if it moved. Mine looks so good now that I’m tempted to make a multi-city loop looking for cheap Winchesters I can doll up.


45 posted on 06/13/2012 11:44:45 AM PDT by gundog (Help us, Nairobi-Wan Kenobi...you're our only hope.)
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To: gundog
I've fired this about 20 times and get good groups out as far as I think I'll need. Paper targets for now. Venison this fall, I hope.
46 posted on 06/13/2012 12:24:51 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
There's deer in the Ozarks? :)
47 posted on 06/13/2012 12:49:41 PM PDT by gundog (Help us, Nairobi-Wan Kenobi...you're our only hope.)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
There's deer in the Ozarks? :)
48 posted on 06/13/2012 12:50:30 PM PDT by gundog (Help us, Nairobi-Wan Kenobi...you're our only hope.)
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To: gundog

Yes.
They’re the size of big dogs...


49 posted on 06/13/2012 1:15:52 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: .45 Long Colt
Head out to the pistol range at your local gun club with a shovel and a framed piece of rat wire. You can mine all the lead you could possibly need. A neighbor (in his 70s!) did just that for a few days. Sold a ton to the local metal recycler and kept about 3/4 of a ton for future needs.

BTW, I don't know what they're using these days, but the day of the lead wheel weight is about over. For the environment, don'cha know.

50 posted on 06/13/2012 1:18:35 PM PDT by kitchen (America or obama - you can't have both.)
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