Starter rifle for the range

Starter rifle for the range

This is a discussion on Starter rifle for the range within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Friends, I am a pistol shooter who just went to a CMP event, shot an M1 carbine and enjoyed the event. While I did pretty ...

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  1. #1
    Member Array drs1457's Avatar
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    Starter rifle for the range

    Friends,
    I am a pistol shooter who just went to a CMP event, shot an M1 carbine and enjoyed the event. While I did pretty well with the carbine, the primitive sights, awkward trigger and hard-to-find ammo rules it out as my first rifle. I am not a hunter (yet) so not sure I want a hunting rifle. Just want something I can use for rifle clinic/matches that are held at the local outdoor gun club. Could you recommend a caliber and rifle that would be reasonable and fun to shoot, and uses ammo that is reasonable in price and plentiful? I would want something that has a decent scope on it. What do you think about a lever action rifle?
    Thanks
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    VIP Member Array cvhoss's Avatar
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    If a 22lr will work for your clinics, you can't beat one for a starter rifle. Ammo is inexpensive, the guns can be extremely accurate within their range, no recoil, fun to shoot, and you can put as much money into a scope for one as you want. Take your choice -- pump, lever, bolt or semi-auto -- I've got at least one of each and they're all fun to shoot.

    If you need a centerfire, there's just not anything right now that "uses ammo that is reasonable in price and plentiful" but a .223 will probably come the closest. If you go that route, my personal preference would be something in an AR platform but you can also get nice bolt or pump rifles in .223. If you want a semi-auto but want to spend less money than an AR, you might look at the Ruger Mini 14 or the Kel-Tec.

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    If you want to reach out a little further, and still have a great HD rifle good enough for 'varmints' and simple competition, how about a Henry lever-action .22 mag rifle?
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    I had a good time shooting my new .22 rifle today and you can find cheap ammo for it. I got a Savage Mark II and it came with a cheap Simmons scope, but it worked pretty good. I was knocking over shotgun shells at 50 yards.

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    Member Array drs1457's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the ideas, fellers. This match/clinic is at 100 yards. If I went to a .22lr solution, I would opt for high quality/tricked out/cool factor as I can afford it. Any suggestions on brand/model?
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    Distinguished Member Array Wasabi's Avatar
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    I'd go .22LR also. The Henry lever action or a Ruger 10/22 semi is a good place to start. The latter has a bunch of info, advice and mods available for it out there to customize it and make it what you want. I also have a warm spot in my heart for pump .22s like the Remington 572. I had one of those as a kid and it's my all time most fun, memorable gun from my youth. Honorable mention for a S&W M&P 15-22 .22LR carbine also. It definitely has the tricked out cool factor down. I've got a bead on one of those myself right now.

    Good luck and have fun in your search.

  7. #7
    Member Array drs1457's Avatar
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    Wasabi, you read my mind. I have been interested in the S&W too. Just not sure if it has the accuracy yet (no reason to doubt it, just haven't confirmed it). I would have to see one in person, as I wouldn't want to get something that looks more like a toy than a firearm. Also, I have pretty long arms. The M1 carbine was a bit short for me at 35 inches. Would like to get a longer rifle than that.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drs1457 View Post
    Thanks for all the ideas, fellers. This match/clinic is at 100 yards. If I went to a .22lr solution, I would opt for high quality/tricked out/cool factor as I can afford it. Any suggestions on brand/model?
    An AR with the Spikes dedicated upper would fit that sort of bill.
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    Take a look at the Savage Mark II BTVS on there web sight. Also look at the CZ
    452.

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    Member Array drs1457's Avatar
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    Say, that CZ 452 Ultra Lux is pretty sweet.
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    Distinguished Member Array Wasabi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drs1457 View Post
    Wasabi, you read my mind. I have been interested in the S&W too. Just not sure if it has the accuracy yet (no reason to doubt it, just haven't confirmed it). I would have to see one in person, as I wouldn't want to get something that looks more like a toy than a firearm. Also, I have pretty long arms. The M1 carbine was a bit short for me at 35 inches. Would like to get a longer rifle than that.
    The reports over @ rimfirecentral are good so far about the S&W. I don't think it's considered a tack driver stock but I'm sure there will eventually be a ton of cool stuff available for it. I'm personally hoping for at least bigger mags soon. It sounds like the Ruger 10/22 may be the ticket for you. You can find them cheap used and buy a bunch of stuff to personalize it to your liking/needs. I'd also like one of those too!
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    +1 on the 22lr, but when I read your post, saying "fun to shoot," my mind went straight to either a Win or Marlin 30-30 lever action!!
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  13. #13
    Distinguished Member Array Wasabi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drs1457 View Post
    Say, that CZ 452 Ultra Lux is pretty sweet.
    Yeah, those are supposed to be damn accurate as well.

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    I would get the Varmint or the American over the Lux since you are going to put a scope on it.

  15. #15
    Member Array drs1457's Avatar
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    Dang, too many choices, guys!
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