best rifle for hunting deer AND zombies, help me out please

This is a discussion on best rifle for hunting deer AND zombies, help me out please within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Originally Posted by Stubborn One thing to keep in mind for a "bug out" or SHTF rifle...you want a caliber that is very, very common. ...

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Thread: best rifle for hunting deer AND zombies, help me out please

  1. #16
    VIP Member Array suntzu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stubborn View Post
    One thing to keep in mind for a "bug out" or SHTF rifle...you want a caliber that is very, very common.
    If the "bug out / SHTF" lasts any length of time you would want a common caliber so you could find/buy/barter for more ammo.
    Just a thought.
    My mind runs to 5.56...7.62X39 or 30-30 for the most common, 30.06 and 308 wouldn't be too far behind.
    I'm really inclined to agree with "Atctimmy" on the Mini 30.
    I agree with that. And everybody is different. I chose my AR in .308 for its versatility and it could take down big game and 2 legged game. Wife got the .22 with LOTS of ammo. But my bug plan is not to fight a war either. It is means to get from point a to b in a disaster. Really comes down to a persoanl bug out plan a purpose. Plus, I have the rifle already and I ain't leaving it behind!!!!!

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  3. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by boatman View Post
    Thanks for the input. Is a .308 the same round as a 7.62 x 39 or x51, are they actually interchangeable? If not, which is least expensive and most available. Also, my friends says to go with 30-06, they said it is the most available. (of course, they have 30-06 so not sure how much they know and why i posted this here).
    OK I have to get ready to go to work. I get off around 9pm and when I get home I'll post a picture with labels so you can see the difference between 7.62X51 and 7.62X39.

    Since I already explained in my post above that the second number is the length of the case in mm you can picture in your head the difference. The 7.62X39 is considerably shorter and not interchangeable.

    I get back to you tonight with some pics. Cheers.
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  4. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by suntzu View Post
    ... Plus, I have the rifle already and I ain't leaving it behind!!!!!
    In my case, I don't have the AR10 yet, but am formulating a reason to get one.
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  5. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by atctimmy View Post
    OK I have to get ready to go to work. I get off around 9pm and when I get home I'll post a picture with labels so you can see the difference between 7.62X51 and 7.62X39.

    Since I already explained in my post above that the second number is the length of the case in mm you can picture in your head the difference. The 7.62X39 is considerably shorter and not interchangeable.

    I get back to you tonight with some pics. Cheers.
    actctimmy: great info, really appreciate it. No need to post pics, understand the diff in lengths of 51 vs 39mm for diff.

    Like your recommendation, need to look more closely at the ruger, in ME you cannot have more than 4 rd cart, this looks to have more, don't know if they make smaller mags for this. But there are a variety of 7.62x39 rifles with these size mags.

  6. #20
    Senior Member Array kerberos's Avatar
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    Makes me wonder though... what's best for zombie-deer???
    mano3, Cory1022 and Chief1297 like this.
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  7. #21
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    Not sure about the .308 vs 7.62mmx51, but the 5.56mm vs .223 are interchangeable in mil spec arms, but not necessarily so in commercial arms. The mil specs should shoot either, but some commercial .223 arms are less tolerant and won't chamber the 5.56mm round. The chambers are closer tolerances and the 5.56mm won't let the bolt close due to case length. At least thats been my experience. Check the manufacturers specs and they should state whether it will shoot .308 and/or 7.62mmx51 or not. Thats a great round for all purpose needs btw.
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  8. #22
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    .308 is same as 7.62 x 51 NATO. The bullet weight can vary between hunting rounds, target and surplus ammo. I reload Lake City 7.62 x 51 with 168 grain bullets for target shooting. It is great brass. You should not hunt with mil surplus ammo. The 7.62 x 39 is the Russian type for an AK-47 or SKS. The bullet is .311 diameter not .308. I was thinking if you are on a tight budget the SKS may work for you. You would need to get the proper hunting rounds for the deer hunt. If you can spend more on the rifle look at an AR-10 or M1A. ( by the way not all surplus ammo can be reloaded ).

  9. #23
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    OP - You want the least recoil possible, so that means a semi-auto action, and not a pump, lever, or bolt rifle.

    You want a .30-something, and you want "cheap" ammo (if such a thing exists anymore).

    Given your parameters, I would also agree with a semi-auto in 7.62 x 39. The Ruger Mini 30 Ranch rifle would be a great choice, and it is much easier to mount optics on it than on an AK or SKS.

    I went with a Marlin 336 lever gun in .30-30 for my .30-something rifle. It was less than $500 new, including the scope and sling. I do not find the recoil objectionable at all - but I'm not you. You might wish to try one, using lighter weight ammo. I prefer the .30-30 to the 7.62 x 39, since the .30-30 can be had in much heavier bullet weights - which can come in handy if you need to deal with zombies hiding behind cover.
    The more good folks carry guns, the fewer shots the crazies can get off.
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  10. #24
    Member Array boatman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10thmtn View Post
    OP - You want the least recoil possible, so that means a semi-auto action, and not a pump, lever, or bolt rifle.
    Excellent point, something i had not thought of.



    I went with a Marlin 336 lever gun in .30-30 for my .30-something rifle. It was less than $500 new, including the scope and sling. I do not find the recoil objectionable at all - but I'm not you. You might wish to try one, using lighter weight ammo. I prefer the .30-30 to the 7.62 x 39, since the .30-30 can be had in much heavier bullet weights - which can come in handy if you need to deal with zombies hiding behind cover.
    I have only shot AR, never bolt action, so I don't know enough about differences in recoil. I did look at the ruger you mentioned, it is very pricey at about 1k vs a Marlin or Savage in 30-06 for half that price. Any idea of the difference in recoil? I guess if I am hunting deer, in theory I am not shooting much, hopefully 1x. Zombies are a different story.

  11. #25
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    "I prefer the .30-30 to the 7.62 x 39, since the .30-30 can be had in much heavier bullet weights..."

    I agree. The .30-30 is more flexible and provides a worthwhile increase in performance over the 7.62X39, as neat as that cartridge is.
    10thmtn likes this.
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  12. #26
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    I use a Browning A-Bolt in a camo stock with a 2-7 Burris.30-06.I does White tail to elk here in Northern Idaho.You can get 30-06 ammo anywhere.Keep it simple.
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  13. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by boatman View Post
    I have only shot AR, never bolt action, so I don't know enough about differences in recoil. I did look at the ruger you mentioned, it is very pricey at about 1k vs a Marlin or Savage in 30-06 for half that price. Any idea of the difference in recoil? I guess if I am hunting deer, in theory I am not shooting much, hopefully 1x. Zombies are a different story.
    A bolt rifle from a reputable maker is going to run around $500 to $800. A mini 30 is going to cost around $700 to $750. Then you add mags and optics on top. The mini 30 is still going to be about $500 to $1000 less than an AR10. You can get 5 round mags for a Mini 30 and with a little tinkering they could be permanently reduced to four rounds to comply with game laws.

    One thing to look at is ME game laws. Do they even allow a semi automatic rifle?

    I'd hate to see you buy a rifle and then not be able to use it.
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  14. #28
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    For the OP's needs, I would second/third whatever the 30/30. I don't have one, simply because everyone else around these parts has one. I picked the 32 Win Spec, and 35 Rem. for my 336's. Just so folks don't think I am recommending it because I like it.

    You can go to any store that sells ammo and pick up a box of 30/30. Like has been mentioned, you can vary the loadings to make it what you want within the cartridges capabilities. The magazine capacity on most lever guns is adequate, and they don't look scarry like those assault weapons that shoot 7.62x39.

    The other option would be to get a lever gun that shoots 44 mag and a handgun that for the same. Then you have pretty much all the bases covered. Hunting with either, home defense/shtf with either as well and a common caliber. Good luck in your choice.
    Just remember that shot placement is much more important with what you carry than how big a bang you get with each trigger pull.
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  15. #29
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    I don't keep up with zombie stuff but that .44 Magnum combo set that farronwolf has a lot of merit. .44 Magnum is plenty potent out of a rifle and would easily do to take deer out to 150 yards with a knowledgeable rifleman stretching it to 200 yards.
    DefConGun likes this.
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  16. #30
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    Just a small correction, .308 and 7.62mmx51 NATO are very close but not quite the same. Check Wikipedia but I believe a 7.62mmx51 NATO chamber can handle .308 Win, but not necessarily the other way around. If you go the .308 route, just make sure the manufacturer claims you can fire both types in their gun. Bulk NATO rounds can be a real money saver, but not if they damage your gun because you happened to get a gun that can't handle the subtle difference.

    You did say you wanted a rifle, but for deer and zombies perhaps a shotgun might be a better choice, if there isn't already one in your collection.

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