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Hello all and good day. I am looking to buy my own hunting rifle next year. Some of the things I am looking for is light recoil, readily available ammunition, and relatively inexpensive ammunition. This will be a whitetail only rifle. I have narrowed it down to .308 and .243. I was also leaning towards the Savage Stevens Model 200 but I think the safety on a Remington model 700 may be easier to use with gloves on (Winchester Model 70 Extreme Weather SS is my first couce but at $900 is too much). I would like to hear some thoughts on this please.
 

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The .243 will have the less recoil, and ammo will cost less, but it just depends where you get it. I like the Savage accu. trigger, but I would get it in .270. If it were between the .243 and .308 then it would be .308 unless I really didn't want much recoil and I was going to target shoot alot.
 

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I have a 243 and 30-06 (very similar to 308). Before you buy take a look at
7-08. Right in the middle between the 243 and 308. Light recoil and good performance.
 

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I have a 243 and 30-06 (very similar to 308). Before you buy take a look at
7-08. Right in the middle between the 243 and 308. Light recoil and good performance.
7mm-08 was the first caliber I researched. But I cannot find ammo around here. The ammo online at Cheaper than dirt and other sites is twice as much as off the shelf ammo for .243 and .308
 

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.243 Winchester is a fine open country cartridge for deer. If your part of Michigan is wooded and you get more snap shoots a heavier caliber might better to compensate for less than perfect shot angles and placement.
I have taken deer at 300 yards with a 6 mm Remington using 100 grain Nosler Partition bullets. [Basically the same as the .243, both are 6mm] in Wyoming on open prairie where I could see the deer at long range and wait for the perfect shot.

The .308 Winchester can handle a bullet as heavy as 200 grains, although 150-165 grains is most commonly used for deer/black bear. The extra bullet weight provides a little more impact.

Remington, Ruger, Savage all make fine rifles. The 6mm bore makes for a better varmint rifle that can handle deer given a little time. For faster, closer range shooting the 30 caliber [7.62 mm] has proven itself well for over 100 years.
 

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Thank you for the replies. Most of my shots will be 150 yards or less. The fields are much longer but I have not had enough practice to be 100% confident with a 200 yard shot.
 

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Hello all and good day. I am looking to buy my own hunting rifle next year. Some of the things I am looking for is light recoil, readily available ammunition, and relatively inexpensive ammunition. This will be a whitetail only rifle. I have narrowed it down to .308 and .243. I was also leaning towards the Savage Stevens Model 200 but I think the safety on a Remington model 700 may be easier to use with gloves on (Winchester Model 70 Extreme Weather SS is my first couce but at $900 is too much). I would like to hear some thoughts on this please.
Part1: I recommend the .308 all day and twice on Sunday! It can do anything the .243 can do and it is more versatile for larger game (elk/moose/). There is a huge variety of loads available and if you ever decide to handload your own ammo you'll find that 30 caliber has waaaaay more bullet types and weights to choose from. Lastly you can take the texas heart shot, also known as a raking shot, on a big buck with a .308. The .243 cannot push all the way through with any degree of confidence.


Part 2: You have named two different types of bolt action and you are talking about two different grades of rifle here. Your three picks are all over the map. We need a little more info so we can narrow down your search.

Do you know the difference between controlled round feed and push feed? Which do you prefer?

Are you looking for a great gun or a good gun at a great price?
 

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Of the two I'd say 308. The 243 is good, but a little too small for the large mule deer around here, IMO. Don't get me wrong, it can do the job, but you'll have more issues if your shot placement isn't real good. Maybe your deer in those parts are small. A 243 is great for small deer (whitetails etc.). The 308 is easy to find for ammo and has more stopping power. The Rem is a better gun finish wise, but the Stevens 200 will be a shooter from what I read.
 

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I have a .243, .308 and .30-06 in similar platforms. With good bullets, I haven't noticed a difference in the way whitetails go down, even on 200+ lb. bucks. With good bullets like Partitions or the TSX, I'd have no hesitation using a .243 on large whitetails, mulies or good size black bears as long as the range was reasonable.
 

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I have a model 700sps in .308, it's a great firearm. Accurate - I've accomplished 1 inch on average with factory loads even at 100 yards. It is pretty lightweight, which is nice when you're out humpin' it around for a few days. It's not too expensive - should be able to get one around $500.
 

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I do not know the difference between push feed and controlled feed. I am currently using a friend's Savage Model 110. The three rifles are all over the board because I was looking at least expensive, middle, and most expensive of my rifle pics.
 

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Controlled round feed are mauser type actions (examples Win. & Kimber). Generally a large claw extractor will grab the rim of the cartridge as the bolt strips it from the magazine. Savage 110 & Rem. 700 are 2 examples of push feeds. The extractor doesn't grab the cartridge during feeding. The Stevens 200 is a budget grade rifle based on the 110 action that still performs well. The Md. 700 and Md. 70 actions are classics and hard to beat. I have 2 700s, have owned Md. 70s in the past and I keep fondling the new ones every trip to the shop. They are sweet.
 

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I do not know the difference between push feed and controlled feed. I am currently using a friend's Savage Model 110. The three rifles are all over the board because I was looking at least expensive, middle, and most expensive of my rifle pics.
Push feeds are mauser type actions (examples Win. & Kimber). Generally a large claw extractor will grab the rim of the cartridge as the bolt strips it from the magazine. Savage 110 & Rem. 700 are 2 examples of push feeds. The extractor doesn't grab the cartridge during feeding. The Stevens 200 is a budget grade rifle based on the 110 action that still performs well. The Md. 700 and Md. 70 actions are classics and hard to beat. I have 2 700s, have owned Md. 70s in the past and I keep fondling the new ones every trip to the shop. They are sweet.
Ok aside from a typo at the beginning (in bold) what kpw said is true. A controlled feed gun is a Mauser style action. A good example would be a Ruger 77 or Winchester 70. Push feeds are Remington and Savage. I suggest that you go to a gun shop and fondle both types of actions. Then decide what you like and buy one.

The truth is that in the US the bolt action rifle market is so competitive that if someone is making junk they won't last long. Hunters and shooters talk and if someone is making crap they won't sell many of them. My point is that any bolt gun from any major manufacturer is going to shoot well. My advice is to buy a gun that feels good in your hands (and feels right when you raise it up to your shoulder). To do this you gotta get out there and hold them. Have fun : )

I myself am a Remington guy, IMO nothing on the market shoots as well out of the box until you get waaaaay higher in price. On the other hand, if you want a good solid shooter at a bargain price you can't go wrong with the Stevens. If you're a history buff a Mauser style (Ruger or Win.) gun may be the thing for you. None of us here on-line can really decide for you. They are all good and it is a personal choice thing.
 

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Nice catch, atctimmy, thanks!
 

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OK I added some pics to help you get a better idea.
These bolts are from a Rem 700 (push feed)and a Yugo M48 Mauser (controlled round feed).

bolt 1.jpg

bolt 2.jpg

I hope this helped a little.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The information didnt help me a little, it helped me a bunch. I researched the difference between push feed and controlled feed a little last night but the pictures that were posted here helped more. I believe that at this point any rifle will be more accurate than I am. I will definitely check out a few rifles in person and see how I like each one. Thank you again everyone for the great posts.
 
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