Dialogue About SHTF Rifles

This is a discussion on Dialogue About SHTF Rifles within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Okay, I'm in the process of finalizing my SHTF kit and I'm debating between a couple options on what to do. So, I figured the ...

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Thread: Dialogue About SHTF Rifles

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array SammyIamToday's Avatar
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    Dialogue About SHTF Rifles

    Okay, I'm in the process of finalizing my SHTF kit and I'm debating between a couple options on what to do. So, I figured the smart thing would be to get some feedback.

    My ideal SHTF setup is 2 rifles and a handgun. One rifle for short range work that is semi-automatic and with some capacity. The other for long range work and hunting type duties. The bolt rifle will be scoped and the close range rifle will be ironsights only.

    Option 1: Use an AK-47 for close and then use a .30-06 or .308 bolt for the long range stuff. Pros are the AK's are cheap and the ammo is cheaper than .308 or .30-06. Capacity is high and I like the performance of the AK.

    Option 2: M1A for short work and a .308 bolt for long range. That way ammo is uniform and there's less stuff to keep track off. Cons being the M1A is heavier than normal, kinda large, and capacity is slightly lower. However, it can reach out a lot further than an AK (accuracy and round power). So, there is that.

    Option 3: A Garand and a .30-06 bolt of some kind. Low capacity, but lots of old parts and a tried and true working battle rifle.

    I realize some of you think it's unnecessary to have two rifles for this purpose, but it's my SHTF kit, so I ask that you please play along.

    I'm not an AR fan. I've owned one and had lots of experience with the M16 in the Marines. Not my thing, nothing against them, so if that's your angle, I suppose just loop yourself into Option 1.

    Does anyone else have any pros/cons or reasoning for which option I should go with? Two heads are better than one. In this case it's probably more like 300 heads are better than one, so I welcome all opinions.
    ...He suggested that "every American citizen" should own a rifle and train with it on firing ranges "at every courthouse." -Chesty Puller

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array joleary223's Avatar
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    That's a tough call. I am a fan of the 308. and love my FN's that's why I bought a Remington 700 chambered in 308. to share ammo. But AK's are a dime a dozen and tough as nails. If it were me starting from scrach I would go with the AK combination. The chance of you going up against another AK is higher than most other weapons so you might as well be able use available ammo.

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    I am working on my TEOTWAWKI kit myself.

    Here is how I am thinking. One battle type rifle and one hunting type rifle. Both would have to have iron sights. I do not want a unsighted rifle in case the scope breaks or becomes unuseable for some reason.

    I have an FAL (with a compact scope) now and want to get a Remington 7600 in .308 or a Mauser (easy to mount a scout scope on) rechambered to .308 that is in good shape.

    I am wanting to concentrat most of my ammo requirements to .308, .357or .38 spl, 9mm and 12 ga. Mostly for cost reasons

    If you are interested I made a list a firearms to go in my kit eventually and why along with what guns I already have.
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

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    I like #2, for the reasons you already listed.
    "Just blame Sixto"

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    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
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    Why not a couple of m1as or fals , scope one and call it good , common ammo , spare parts interchangability , mags ect. and either can be made to deliver match grade accuracy , tho the m1a IMHO has an edge there . Point is that about any battle rifle can be made to deliver such fine accuracy that most shooters will not gain from a bolt .
    Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
    We only begin to understand folks after we stop and think .

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    VIP Member Array SammyIamToday's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pgrass101 View Post

    If you are interested I made a list a firearms to go in my kit eventually and why along with what guns I already have.
    Yes, I'm interested in all opinions on this subject. I want a lot of different viewpoints before I make my final decision.

    Quote Originally Posted by joleary223 View Post
    That's a tough call. I am a fan of the 308. and love my FN's that's why I bought a Remington 700 chambered in 308. to share ammo. But AK's are a dime a dozen and tough as nails. If it were me starting from scrach I would go with the AK combination. The chance of you going up against another AK is higher than most other weapons so you might as well be able use available ammo.
    Yeah, I already have an AK too. However, that M1A kinda seems to be calling for some reason.

    Quote Originally Posted by Redneck Repairs View Post
    Why not a couple of m1as or fals , scope one and call it good , common ammo , spare parts interchangability , mags ect. and either can be made to deliver match grade accuracy , tho the m1a IMHO has an edge there . Point is that about any battle rifle can be made to deliver such fine accuracy that most shooters will not gain from a bolt .
    That's true too, but from what I've read it's a bit of an endeavour to get that kind of accuracy from a M1A. Will they stand up to abuse and still be so accurate? It just seems like a bolt has less points that can fail and still get the job done for hunting and long range work. I'm not pretending I have the answers, just if you could expound on this some more, maybe it is the way I want to go.
    ...He suggested that "every American citizen" should own a rifle and train with it on firing ranges "at every courthouse." -Chesty Puller

  8. #7
    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
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    The M1a is as i am sure you know basically an updated garand action . Typicaly the NM version by springer will come in somewhere around MOA accuracy or a little under , and even the field versions are easily tightened up to close to that without a barrel change, and sometimes sub moa . FALs " out of the box " are also 2 to 4 moa and can be improved on dramaticly , but dont lend themselves to match accuracy as easily as the m1a . PTTR91 and HK91 are the same basic rifle and can come in at 1 to 2 moa with fitting .
    Any of the above rifles are " Battle Rifles " in semi auto dress ( which imho a true battle rifle is semi anyway due to control issues of .308 on full auto ) . They will stand up to untrained conscripts living and operating in the wild for literally months at a time , far better than a bolt action which in most cases came from a battle rifle design, but has been " nutered " for light weight and styling since hunters want pretty as much as tough . If you do the " twin " rifle for shtf you have a ready supply of spare parts to keep one running , what happens when the fireing pin or extractor breaks on that bolt ?

    The ar 10 would be another fine choice for this other than you stated you did not care for the AR , and i took this to mean the basic action not just the caliber .
    Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
    We only begin to understand folks after we stop and think .

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    JD
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    Thumbs up

    You can get 30 round mags for the M1A/M14, they are more scarce and cost a little more, and are a little more bulky but they are out there.

    Besides, 20 rounds of .308 / 7.62x51 is nothing to sneer at.


    Keep your calibers the same, not having to stock pile 2 different calibers is a good thing in my book.

    Modifying a M1A for close in work is not that hard, there are options regarding stock type such as the VLTOR modstock that are not as insanely priced like the Sage EBR stock.


    And there's always the FAL or the PRT 91

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    VIP Member Array SammyIamToday's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tips Redneck, I'll definitely keep that in mind, I just don't know if two M1A's are in the budget. :)


    To be honest, I don't really care for rifles with a pistol grip. I don't really have a reason, I just don't like them so much. My AK is a Saiga for that reason.

    Anyways, saying I do go with the M1A for close in, how are the ballistics of .308 in the 16" barrel versions? Or do I need to stick with the normal 22"?
    ...He suggested that "every American citizen" should own a rifle and train with it on firing ranges "at every courthouse." -Chesty Puller

  11. #10
    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
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    Honestly Sammy for the .308/7.62 i like an 18" tube as shortest , Its long enough to get most if not all the powder burned ( depending on load of course ) so you reduce visible signature , as well as the sound sig . the 16" is just flat unplesant imho and its amazing how much differance there is . There is no difference in " intrensic " accuracy no matter the barrel leingth , tho you will loose about 200 fps for every inch under 20" you go so you will have more drop at extreme ranges if that is a concern . Out to 400 yards or so the only noticable differance would be the sight radius on the unscoped rifles . Were i buying , to fit your stated needs it would be one full tube for scope , and one 18 inch for irons . BTW the better mounts for the m1a are basicly RTZ in other words you can remove the scope and replace it with virtualy no loss of zero . This route is deffinatly more spendy , but has advatages when you cant just order a part , and also you never get caught carrying your " slow " rifle when you need to play rock and roll for the dance .
    Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
    We only begin to understand folks after we stop and think .

    Criminals are looking for victims, not opponents.

  12. #11
    Member Array vernonator's Avatar
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    I have a #2 setup (M1A and Rem 788 in .308)....though to be honest I also have an CAR-15 in the mix as well (for in-house/CQB situations). In a TEOTWAIKI situation my wife would have the CAR and I would have the M1A.

    Realistically for a Katrina/Pandemic "Social Breakdown" situation I think my CAR-15 and 1911 will be my EDC. My long guns would be for defending my property - I am out in the country with some nice long lines of approach......

  13. #12
    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
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    For my own use i went with a STG 58 FAL(irons) , AR-15 16" ( red dot ), 4 sks ( irons ) , and 5 differently configed ruger 10-22s . Of them all i suspect the 10-22s will be most valuable to me and mine in my area. We are rural , and i worry more about 4 legged vermin and small game than i do two legged vermin . The sks's are basicly " ranch " rifles that fill the niche that a 30-30 mod 94 winchester used to, a beater that you can pitch in a pickup( or hand to someone who may not care for it properly ) and not worry about it . The AR fills in as home defense and SWMBO's rifle while the fal is to poke a fiew holes in things folks may think of as cover fairly rapidly , as well as large game . The other rifles i have are for the most part bolt action hunters that might see some use but would not be a " first choice " for me . The same goes for shotguns .
    Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
    We only begin to understand folks after we stop and think .

    Criminals are looking for victims, not opponents.

  14. #13
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    Can't beat a .12ga for close up! I've got both an FAL and an M1A Scout (both heavy) and would prolly go with the FAL for long distance or my Remmy 700 LTR (.308) with the addition of a 1911 for a sidearm.

    -Rug

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    VIP Member Array Rob72's Avatar
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    Or, get a PTR 91. No gas bleed-off, and mags and parts are about as cheap as MBR stuff gets, at the moment. The M1A would be wellbehind the PTR or FAL, for me, just my $.02

  16. #15
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    IMO, no kit should be complete without a 22 rifle and shotgun.

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