This is a discussion on .22lr/.223/.308/30-30? within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; As has been noted on other 'survival' threads...many of us are packing and planning for 'times worse than we might like'. One of my neighbors ...

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Thread: .22lr/.223/.308/30-30?

  1. #1
    Senior Moderator
    Array RETSUPT99's Avatar
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    As has been noted on other 'survival' threads...many of us are packing and planning for 'times worse than we might like'.

    One of my neighbors has encouraged me to get some kind of a rifle and 4x scope (60 year old eyes) to be able to 'reach out and touch someone' if the need to protect the home were necessary. He suggested a .223 type!

    I have been looking at various carbines.

    Now I have a variety of hand guns and a double barrel coach gun for regular home defense...wouldn't a .22LR rifle with a 4x scope work well?

    Would I necessarily have to get a .223 AR? ...or a 30-30 Marlin?
    I just want something to get out beyond the yard...so to speak!

    Any advice?

    Plan ahead...stay safe!

    Proverbs 27:12 says: “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.”

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  2. #2
    Array QKShooter's Avatar
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    General Survival - Accurate w/ fairly cheap bulk ammo available.
    Compact and sweet.

    The Ruger All Weather Mini 14 in .223 would be a great multi~use rifle. All Stainless w/ a nice synthetic stock.

    You can leave it buried in the snow all Winter and then shake it off and shoot it in the Spring.

    Click here to go to that Ruger page.
    Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ

  3. #3
    VIP Member (Retired Staff) Array P95Carry's Avatar
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    Ret - each has it's purpose and so not so easy to find the ''catch all''.

    I would say if trying to cover all bases with just one choice, an AK is going to get close to fitting the bill - tho indeed an AR is bound to be suggested too by some.

    .22LR is not to be discounted but the limitation on range and power is probably excessive. Mostly a small ''critter gitter''!

    I'd not rule out a '94 style lever in ''thuddy thuddy'' either if capacity and rate of fire limitations not a problem - it's a good ol stalwart.

    Still come back to an AK tho in the end - for my 2c.
    Chris - P95
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    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."

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  5. #4
    VIP Member Array artz's Avatar
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    I guess that would depend upon the critters in your yard. I chose a pump .22 magnum. Sure a .22 would work, I would keep various types of ammo handy for different jobs.
    Out of the calibers you've picked, I would pick a mini-14 or even a mini-30.

  6. #5
    VIP Member Array SammyIamToday's Avatar
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    Depends on what max effective range you're looking for. If you're talking over 100 yards, I'd start rulling the .30-30 out (although I hear that new round works wonders). If over 300ish, I'd rule the .223 out and go to the .308 or a .30-06.

  7. #6
    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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    My HD rifle is a Steyr SBS, with a 19" barrel, and a 1.5-6x36 Burris Electro-dot scope. At 1.5x, it works as a collimator sight(both eyes open, across-the-room range); at 6x, I can easily reach out to that 300 yard mark. My SBS has the 10 round mag kit, but you can stick with the 5 rounder. About $600 for the rifle, and another $350 for the scope. I like the action better than the 700s.

  8. #7
    Lew is offline
    Member Array Lew's Avatar
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    I like them all. I actually want them all. My montra, "Buy them all. And later, buy more, repeat."

    I can't discount, for a defense rifle, the .22lr for it's small calibur... If I was looking at a tricked out Ruger 10-22 with a 30 or 50 round ramline banna clip sticking out the bottom, I would have 3rd and 4th thoughts.... if I was still able to think...With a quality scope, and practice, they can do wonders.

    I love the 30-30. I have fired so many rounds down range I lost count. I know that with all my time on a 94 lever action, it is the "comfort" rifle for me. I can work it intimately blindfolded. I can empty one, on target, faster than most people expect, but that came from time on the rifle. People forever say over 100 yards is a no go with it, but I, personally and respectfully, disagree...
    At 200 yards....
    30-30 Win. (170 grain)
    2200 fps (Muzzle velocity)
    1619 (fps) Velocity at 200 yards
    1827 ft-lb Muzzle energy
    989 ft-lb Energy at 200 yards.

    More than enough to kill you dead.

    I have wanted a mini-14 forever, I think this spring, after a springfield 1911 purchase (Christmas present to self), I am going to get one.

    SO MANY GUNS, so little money.... sigh.
    There are 2 types of people, victims and the prepared. I choose to be prepared....

    "Bless thee, O Lord, This handgrenade, that it may blow thine enemies to bits. Amen" ~Monty Python's Holy Grail

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  9. #8
    Distinguished Member Array RSSZ's Avatar
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    Bushmaster Carbon15, Type21. TRU-GLO red dot sight(always on). Min. of 5,20 shot mags. As many M855 milsurp rds. as you can afford. ---------

  10. #9
    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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    Forgot to add: my Steyr is .308. Also, regardless of what the law or Constitution say, if you are "visible", you may well be the target of LE/Mil. Good argument for a short-barreled (16"-18") rifle. Points to consider:
    1) An AK is about the cheapest, most (generally) reliable carbine out there.
    2)It will be a far-distant-future day, when you won't find/recover AR parts & ammo, "in the field".
    3) Bolts are slow, but bolts rule- if you know how to use your optics and environment. It will be more expensive, but buying spitzer boat-tails, VMax/AMax, or Barnes Copper Solids will definitely reap a harvest, if you can see any part of a torso.........

    The only disadvantage to a lever gun is the mag tube- just like a shotty, ding it hard enough, and you have an inconvenient single-shot. If you go this route, it would be worth the extra $ to get a thick-walled, stainless mag tube from one of the custom lever guys. A variable 2-6x with illuminated reticle, on a 16" or 18", express-sighted .30-30, .45-70, .357, or .44mag would be a heckuva good urban package.

  11. #10
    VIP Member Array sgtD's Avatar
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    I don't think one rifle is enough. JMO

    If an actual SHTF situaion occured, my thinking is that you should have the ability to "liberate" ammo. So .223 or .308 are good choices, as they are NATO rounds and will be available in large quantities somewhere for a long time. As will 9mm., so don't rule out a 9mm carbine.

    Not following in the defensive direction, but turning toward basic survival, ie. food gathering, small game hunting etc. You can't beat a .22. The ammo is soooo cheap that you could easily stockpile thousands of rounds and it's so small and light that you can carry 500rounds in your pants pockets. Try that with a centerfire cartridge.

    My recomendation for a basic setup to compliment your handguns and shotgun, take it or leave it, is one of each of the following.


    JMO, but I believe in being prepared for any contengency.
    When you've got 'em by the balls, their hearts & minds will follow. Semper Fi.

  12. #11
    Member Array paknheat's Avatar
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    If using your home-defense guns for a general SHTF senario, then mine would be: Hers- AR-15 , MossBerg 20 ga, M-10 S&W.38. Mine would be: SKS, Remington 870 12ga. Ruger Speed-Six in .357 and the Ruger10-22. All are accompanied by PLENTY of ammo and spare mags, stripper clips, speed loaders, etc. That is what is on hand ready to go right now. However, we are speaking of a SHTF senario, where we are holding down the fort correct? I mean the homestead, not bugging out.
    A armed person is a citizen-An unarmed person is a future victim.

  13. #12
    Member Array jercamp45's Avatar
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    Well, as everyone stated...the .22 is very handy all-around survival gun...but lacking in power for larger, more dangerous critters.
    The shotgun is OK for close range stuff.
    But something with alittle more reach is definately nice.
    AR's are great! With the right optics, and accessories you'd have a great tool that'll reach out aways with minimum recoil. But with the AR's....you spend a bunch of money, then find ways to put even more money into it........not soo bad for a terminal gunnut(like me), but not so good if you want a simple inexpensive tool.
    I like AK's too...have one and will keep it. But they cost some and look rather menacing...not an average house gun.
    Take a look at an SKS...10 rounds, dirt simple, ammo is not too expensive, can get 30-30 ballistic out of it without the recoil or manually operating the lever.
    Zero the 7.62 russian at 25, and it should drop 53ish inches at 300 yards. Not a long range rifle by anymeans, nor super accurate.....but it will get the job done and how far do you really need to shoot?
    Only you can decide that.
    Ideas to ponder.

  14. #13
    VIP Member Array farronwolf's Avatar
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    Everyone should have at least 1 22 rifle, or maybe even a half dozen like I do. You just can't beat them for teaching people to shoot and the cost of operation. However, it would not be my first choice in what I would want for a defensive rifle as questioned.

    Everyone should also have a shotgun in their safe. Not much explaination for it.

    For 100 to 125 yds and less, any 30/30, 32 win sp, 35 rem, will do just nicely. They all have about the same ballistics but the 30/30 are easier to find. I prefer the marlins over the winchesters especially if you want a scope, I don't need one for that short yardage yet, I ain't 60.

    For over 125 yds out to 300 or so maybe to 400 yds, I would keep the old trusty 30.06, or maybe the 270 with a good 3x9 or 4x12 scope on it. You get these sighted in properly and they are deadly accurate.

    Over 400 yds, you might want to start to look at a 300 win mag. or some other longer range caliber.

    If you aren't going to have a large selection and are looking for the one gun in a pinch to shoot people or squirrels or other food I guess the 223 would be ok, I personally don't like the caliber. You can however get them much cheaper than the AR style guns. Ruger Ranch rifles, or a Saiga (never shot one) which is an AK styled gun are less expensive I believe. The 7.62x39 in either a sks or ak style is a good round also for most purposes. For the same money you could get both a 22 and some other larger caliber rifle that would do what you need.

    Anyway, that is a tough question. What is the best all around rifle? No perfect answer in my opinion, I prefer many.
    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. #14
    Senior Member Array hsuCowboy98's Avatar
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    You dont need a sledgehammer for a push pin, and you dont use a tack hammer on concrete.

    Basically, for each caliber you listed, there is a use it is good for,a use it can do in a pinch, and a use it isnt suited for.

    I prefer an AR style rifle for the use you listed, but other .223 carbines fit the bill fine.

    For longer than 300 yards, the heavier calibers are prefered, but then you wouldnt be talking self defense at those types of ranges, and would be extremely hard to justify.
    Fear No Evil.

  16. #15
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    Array enigmaone's Avatar
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    M1A1 IMHO best general purpose rifle........
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