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Discussion Starter #1
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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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.

Hoss
 

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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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Discussion Starter #5
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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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.
 

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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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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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Discussion Starter #10
Say, that CZ 452 Ultra Lux is pretty sweet.
 

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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.
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! :hand10:
 

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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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Another vote for a 10/22.

Look for a used one, since all you're really going to be using is the receiver.

Pick up a good aftermarket bull barrel for it ($100 and up); a Volquartsen trigger pack (~$225 or so), and a Hogue overmolded stock ($50). Check Shotgun News--usually there's a seller (J&G?) that sells barrel & stock kits for a pretty darn good price (less than $200, iirc). Doing the work yourself is a piece of cake, and you'll learn lots about your rifle.

After that, whatever glass you want for it...avoid cheap-o scopes, and get something decent--say a Nikon or Leupold right off the bat.

That's what I'd do, in your position.
 

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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?
I just bought a Savage Mark II BTVS .22LR with thumbhole stock. I put a Mueller APV Scope on it and Burris Signature Zee "high" rings with nickel finish and it is a tack driver.

CVHOSS gave me the recommendation on this rifle and I took his good advice. He always has thoughtful advice and whenever I am on the fence about something I PM him get his take on things.

My FFL got me the rifle (brand new/factory fresh) for $319. I ordered the scope from Dennis at http://www.mizzoumuleguns.com/ for $125 delivered and the Burris rings set me back about $30 from www.opticsplanet.com
 

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When I was looking for a .22 it got down to either the CZ Varmint or the Savage Mark II FV. Both are very accurate and like you I am lucky enough with a good paying job that price was not my deciding factor in choosing one over the other. I looked at what I was going to do with it. I plan on hunting with it in all conditions and target shooting. I decided that the CZ was to pretty for my use for it. I would feel bad if I scratched it up and I didn't want to worry about being so careful with it and I wanted the bull barrel that's why I choose the Savage I just wish mine would have been available with a SS barrel instead of blue.
 

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Siafu, that's a nice setup, I am going to get that scope to replace the one that came on mine. I think the rings will work, but I will have to check and see if they are 1", I think they are though.
 

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