Mini 14 or Wimchester .30-30
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Old 04-08-2012, 03:22 AM   #1
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Default Mini 14 or Wimchester .30-30

I am trying to decide between buying a new Mini 14 or buying a used, but in very good condition Winchester Model 94 in .30-30. Te Mini 14 will cost $620 while the Winchester will coat $400. The Winchester has a scope with see through rings, although the scope is cloudy. I would use this for closer shots on deer, while I would only use the mini for coyote and target shooting. Price wise the mini would be cheaper to shoot. Right now I can only afford to buy one. Which would you choose?

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Old 04-08-2012, 03:30 AM   #2
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Neither. How about a mini 30 instead. It will do both and ammo is still cheap.

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Old 04-08-2012, 10:39 AM   #3
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Order a S&W M&P15 sport if you want a rifle that will shoot 5.56 and .223 ammo. LGS prices are around 600 dollars and way more accurate than a mini anything. For a 30-30 get a marlin not a winny. Typicaly a better shooter and put a scope on that you want. See thru rings are not liked by many as they set to high and a cloudy scope is worthless. Marlin can be found for 350 on up used. Another choice, Savage /stevens 200 bolt actions in 308 LGS prices are right around 300 dollars. . Way better deer cartidge.

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Old 04-08-2012, 11:19 AM   #4
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In my pea brain,shooting 30-30's....or any of the old BP cartridges....goes hand in hand with cast bullits.But then so does a bunch of newer loadings as well,duh.

Marlins and their dang Micro-groove's is just plain nonsense.I have an old 336 and would'nt part with it for anything,yadayada.But its likes/dislikes or load window is extremely small.

Just sayin,Marlin dropped the ball big-time,not putting "proper" rifling in their lever guns.A pre-64 Winchester will leave a Marlin looking pretty foolish when cast bullits are on the menu.To the point,that I've outshot scoped Marlins w/iron sited Winchesters,its that obvious.

Good .308 turnbolts are an excellent way to get into shooting the cast stuff.With just a little effort,groups right around MOA are pretty routine.Best of luck,BW

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Old 04-08-2012, 11:22 AM   #5
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What JTJ said !!

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Old 04-08-2012, 12:18 PM   #6
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Although I appreciate the suggestions about a mini thirty and the S&W I am not really in the market for an AR or a gun that shoots 7.62x39. I understand that the S&W and the mini 30 are good guns, but I'm just not looking to get either right now. I already have a Savage bolt action .308, so I'm not really looking to get another .308 at the moment. I'm leaning towards the Winchester because I loved the wood and the feel of the gun. I'm pretty sure it is pre-64, but not entirely sure. If I got the Winchester the scope would be removed. I really don't have a problem with see through rings because I have shot my dad's Remington 700 in .270 multiple times and am actually quite fond if them. So between the two I have mentioned, which would you choose? I would also like to hear how you feel about the 94 versus the 336.

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Old 04-08-2012, 01:31 PM   #7
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Okay, here are my thoughts on your question. I do not have a Mini 14 but I have the real thing, which is a SA NM M1A. I have had a Model 94 for 40 years. My model 94 has always been my favorite rifle. The lever-action 30-30 will always be a lot of fun to shoot. I doubt you would ever get tired of having one. My M1A is a great gun to shoot but it would never take the place of my Model 94.

The Mini 14 and Model 94 are two very different guns. While the Mini 14 is semi-auto and can be shot rapidly, I feel the Model 94 is the better gun. It is a better rifle for hunting game such as deer. The early model Mini 14s had problems with accuracy. I have never heard someone complain that they didn't like or were bored with their lever-action rifle, so for me this would be an easy decision.

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Old 04-08-2012, 01:52 PM   #8
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I still can't understand the fascination with the 30-30???? when there are so many good modern, even in lever actions, out there. The 30-30 is a rimmed, flat nose cartridge with a rainbow trajectory and a small powder capacity, that was originally designed for black powder. I know, I know, it has killed more deer than any other cartridge; but it has wounded (and missed) more deer than any other cartridge also. I can't understand why it is still hanging on. The gun writers hardly mention it anymore. I suppose that all of the Marts still carry it and as a result most of the uninformed shooters still buy them. I still can't understand why people often equate it with the .308, the 30-06, etc. It isn't even in the same ballpark. That's like comparing a little league hitter to Albert Pujols. They ain't even close.
To the OP, if you must have a lever action, check out the Browning LAR, the Savage 99, or the Winchester 88 in a higher intensity modern center fire round such as the .243, .308, .284, or .358. If it has to be between the '94 or the 336, the Marlin action w/ its side ejection is hard to beat, but I would get it in the .35 Remington, even though it's old it is a much more improved cartridge over the old 30-30.
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Old 04-08-2012, 02:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Georgiahunter
I am trying to decide between buying a new Mini 14 or buying a used, but in very good condition Winchester Model 94 in .30-30. Te Mini 14 will cost $620 while the Winchester will coat $400. The Winchester has a scope with see through rings, although the scope is cloudy. I would use this for closer shots on deer, while I would only use the mini for coyote and target shooting. Price wise the mini would be cheaper to shoot. Right now I can only afford to buy one. Which would you choose?
I trophy hunted Dooley County, Ga for 15 years before moving back home to the rather small Whitetails of Texas. The stands I had in the thick stuff, I shot a .35 Marlin 336. The weight of the bullet and powder load were the reason. Hunting the parameters of cotton fields, I used a Ruger 77 in 30.06.

I also briefly used a Mini 30 but found the rounds deficient for woods hunting and the short barrel a problem for 200-300 yard shots across cotton fields.

You selection also depends upon hunting terrain.

Personally, my .35 Marlin is my favorite.
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Old 04-08-2012, 02:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JTJ View Post
Neither. How about a mini 30 instead. It will do both and ammo is still cheap.
I do NOT agree ammo is cheap for the the Mini-30 -- it is essentially only reliable with US spec brass ammo. So much so I won't even buy my buddy's and he'd give it to me at any price I offered and I'd pay him any price he asked. Understanding that the Mini-30 is still an interesting suggestion...

I will say this about your decision: prioritize your choice and bump it up against the situations. If the .30 is what u see as a "deal," it'll be gone tomorrow (unless the .30-30 guy'll take a deposit and you trust him). The .30-30 you can always easily sell again at hunting season for your money back. But do you want/need it as much as the Mini-14 which might be a little harder to get these days...
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