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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
many of the gun manufacturers have gotten into this. inexpensive rifles, with no frills hunting rifles, that get the game into the freezer.

taken as they are, and used as they were meant to be used, they will get the job done, if the shooter does his. many of them are far more accurate than most shooters are, but don't mistake them for what they aren't, precision target or competition rifles. that was not the purpose or intention behind them from the get go.

the manufacturers for such are many, such as Ruger, Remington, Savage, Howa, ect., ect., and so on. price ranges are varied, and depending upon what you personally consider an economical entry level hunting rifle.

most will be at least chambered in the most popular hunting cartridges, which means ammo to feed them can be gotten most anywhere. some are available with a scope mounted and bore-sighted, needing only to be fine-tuned on paper and verified for accuracy. but personally, I'd skip the combo deals and buy your own scope as you will be far better off in the long run. most of them buy a pallet load of the cheapest scopes to mount on those rifles. thing most are probably going to be in the $50 range in value! if you buy an entry level rifle for $300 to $400, spend at least that much on a decent scope for your rifle. you will thank me for this bit of advice later! (donations are being accepted at this time:D)

I have found many of them respond quote well to handloads, just like the more expensive rifles do. I have gotten some pretty tight groups out of many of them from shooting handloads that i have worked up and fine-tuned to the particular rifle being shot. most of them perform decently with factory ammo as well. but you may have to through a lot of various factoy ammo to find what works well in your specific rifle.

Pros:
attractive prices, affordable.
well made.
utilitarian with features and looks.
decently accurate.
tough and hunting friendly.

Cons:
cheap scopes on combo deals.
triggers may not be the best, or crispest. (some may be adjustable for pull weight)
injection molded stocks that are usually hollow and can transmit sound if bumped going through the woods. most entry level rifles will have a synthetic stock that is usually injection molded plastic. most of them are pure crap.
many have little aftermarket support in parts or accessories. so sometime universal or "one size fits all" in parts may have to be used or adapted to the rifle.

so that's it for a start!
 
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I got a pre accutrigger Axis.
For a beater truck gun (yotes).
The bedding tab was not fully inserted in the stock. Whack w brass hammer and it was.
Stock sucked, was too flexible. Stiffening forend w epoxy helped, but wrist still flexed some.
Comb was low, mounting a scope proper had bolt handle hitting eyepiece.......even on a small eyepiece like Leupold.
I scalloped the bolt handle. But then went to taller rings and made a cheekpiece.
It shot ww factory 100gr to half inch for 5 shots at 100yds (only ammo I had around).
It did get a trigger job before testing, had a write up about it.
Cost me $2

Back then the only scope base that would allow for a variety of scope tube lengths, was the EGW and it was 60 bucks. Reg bases/rings barely let a Redfield Rev 4-12X fit, with minimal adjustment.

I did not care for the rig, so sold it and got a used Rem 700 ADL synth. I stiffened the forend w epoxy on it too and it works fine. Feels much better. Mine has the Xmark pro, but not of recall span, so may be a Cerberus era. It had the J lock bolt.

It wears a Gre Tan firing pin/shroud now. Add $75 for that.

Before the FP swap I was getting .75 at 100 w factory 80gr. I think that good enough for a yote rig.

While there may be econo/entry level rifles, like the Rem 783, Savage Axis and Ruger American.........I consider a 700 ADL synth an entry level rifle too. Paid 300 for mine used.

Think a used Sav 110 or similar (Stevens 200 anybody?) the better "entry level" offering from Savage.

They are thicker in action depth than the 700's, and feel is important to me. Just like the Rem better. To each his own.

Might get a used Savage short action and rebarrel to .300 Savage, in stainless...........if a deal ever comes my way.

I've been divorced, lost job/career, medical bills.............and I still think blowing an extra 100 for a better used rifle the way to go. Just because something is new, that doesn't mean it's better. But some folks think otherwise.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
nothing wrong with buying a good used rifle for hunting, and many times there are some really great deals if a person shops around. I have bought many used rifles over the years, and haven't regretted buying any of them. I knew that they weren't perfect when i bought them, and I knew that I might have to spend some money getting them like I wanted. many were so much cheaper than buying the same rifle brand new, that usually any money I did spend, was still putting me money ahead.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
exactly! now is the time to start looking for next year's deer season rifle.
 
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I bought a SKS and Rem 700 .243 wuth scope for 250.00. Used.
The 243 has taken deer at 400 yrds, DRT several times which is all one really needs in my neck of the woods.

The SKS is about as good a defense / survival rifle as one could ask for.
 

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You can find good deals on older rifles a month or so before deer season too. Working at Cabela's, I bought several older guns and milsurps that were sold to buy a new rifle. Got my Krag that way. Feller in his late 50's said he couldn't find ammo for it anymore. Got my P14 for the same reason.
 

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I had some nice rifles, until Fate stepped in and handed me one of life’s blows. I became an instant convert to milsurp and H&R. I grew fond of the Handi Rifle. Grew a pretty nice collection of them. Along the way I learned what makes them tick, how to hold them, how to work the trigger (yes, there is more to the Handi rifle trigger than just pulling it). 5 cent hacks that made them better. Plus customer service was actually pretty good. Didn’t like the trigger? Send in the reciever. it would come back with a nice crisp trigger of about 3 pounds. Plus you could have it come back with another barrel or two and a new stock for just a couple of dollars.

Milsurps were another good source for the financially challenged. I could walk into the sporting goods department of the Sky City and buy any number of bolt action rifles for as little as $49! Mausers of all types, Enfields, Arisakas, Carcanos. I even found a Hakim! Unfortunately I never found a Springfield.

The Handi Rifles had their peculiarities. Some did have plastic stocks, the echo from the hollow plastic stock will go away by simply using the spray foam insulation. They like rubber O rings on the barrel stud. Put the receiver just in front of the trigger guard on the sand bag, not the forearm. Some, like the super light .243 are known to be accuracy challenged. But it can be made to shoot well if you feed it what it wants. Every Handi Rifle I have known shoots best from a fouled bore.

But they have bought me some pretty nice rifles here lately. Handi Rifles are somewhat sought after now. They bring decent money, especially if you part them out. $300 or so for just the barrel is not uncommon, sometimes more depending on chambering. $85 for the stock set, $40 for the internals. Some, like the 38-55 Classic I have seen sell for over $500!

The Milsurps are in the same. I was offered $375 for a Chinese T53! Those Arisakas, Enfields and Mausers easily bring $400 and up.

I have been using the budget rifles to fund some premium rifles to enjoy in my old age. Trading quanity for quality. There are a few I will be keeping though, the H&R Handi Rifles in 30-30, 223 Remington, 280 Remington, 300 AAC Blackout, 45-70 and the 45/410 Survivor. The Milsurps I will keep the T53 I mentioned earlier. It’s a souvinered rifle, gifted to me by a Marine Corps friend. An Arisakas, also souvinered. My wife’s uncle brought it back from the Pacific in WW2. Interesting in that it is a school rifle, not one of the emperors rifles. And my absolute favorite rifle, my Spanish FR8.

I have also accurried a couple more “budget” rifles. Picked up a Ruger American, either a Ranch or Predator model in each caliber I have an MSR chambered for. 223/5.56, 300 BLK, 450 Bushmaster, and 6.5 Grendel.
 

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Yes, today's entry level guns are accurate. i've scoped and sighted in most of them. Most are also ugly. i thoroughly detest Tupperware on a gun.

Growing up in WV my brother, my friends and i all hunted with milsurp rifles. One could purchase a nice Italian or Japanese rifle for $10-15. A nice British Enfield cost about $20. The basic problem was obtaining hunting ammunition for the Italian and Japanese rifles. Ours was ordered from Philip. J. Medicus and came by Railway Express.
 

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I'm trying to find an Axis(or Axis 2) in the next couple of weeks, it would be a nice gun nestled under the back seat. I do wish they would bring back iron sights from the factory
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yes, today's entry level guns are accurate. i've scoped and sighted in most of them. Most are also ugly. i thoroughly detest Tupperware on a gun.

Growing up in WV my brother, my friends and i all hunted with milsurp rifles. One could purchase a nice Italian or Japanese rifle for $10-15. A nice British Enfield cost about $20. The basic problem was obtaining hunting ammunition for the Italian and Japanese rifles. Ours was ordered from Philip. J. Medicus and came by Railway Express.
yes, I agree, many of the entry level hunting rifles are not pretty like many of us grew up and hunting with. sometimes you have to forsake "pretty" in order to be economical. sad, but true. entry level wasn't made to be pretty, but affordable and built for a purpose.

when I was much younger, many of the rifle manufacturers usually had an economy version, like the Remington Model 700, which they offered the ADL, without some of the fancy features the BDL had. but they were still just as accurate, and were still a very nice looking rifle.

I'm trying to find an Axis(or Axis 2) in the next couple of weeks, it would be a nice gun nestled under the back seat. I do wish they would bring back iron sights from the factory
many of the entry level rifles don't have iron sights simply to help keep the cost of them down. no iron sights, means an extra step machining the barrel to mount them is taken off, plus the extra time needed to properly align them with the receiver is eliminated as well, and the sights themselves and then not needed.

injection molded synthetic stocks are very cheap to manufacture, compared to a walnut or laminate stock.

the matte finish? well think of the man hours needed, and the experience needed for a polished and blued barrel and other metal parts. you teach just about any idiot how to bead blast the metal parts before they go into the blueing tank, but the hours and experience needed for polishing them before the blueing tank takes years to learn. time is money. so by bead blasting, they pass that savings on to the consumer.
 
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Plastic stocks and polymer frames seem to be the norm for darn near everything these days. Savage's Accutrigger gets my vote for one of the best features on their entry-level guns. Wouldn't recommend "combo" deals from most as the scopes aren't what I would choose and don't bring squat when you try to sell them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Even a lot of non entry level bolt guns don't ship with irons anymore, it's becoming a lost art
lots of "varmint" type rifles, or those with heavy varmint contour barrels, usually will not have iron sights on them. lots of the target, or tactical bolt-action rifles will come without iron sights.

let me show you a comparison of price, with just one brand, say Remington.

https://www.remington.com/rifles/bolt-action/model-700/model-700-cdl-sf
with an MSRP of $1180

VS.

https://www.remington.com/rifles/bolt-action/model-783/model-783-synthetic
with an MSRP of $354

huge difference in price.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Huge difference in the performance and quality also. I personally will never buy an entry level rifle. Yes,you can polish the turd,but it's still a turd!
I totally agree. but some people are on really tight budgets and sometimes an entry-level rifle might be all they can afford. but, I would also suggest they do some looking around at the pawn shops and gun stores for a good used rifle as well. many times they can be found at deep discounts compared to their cost when new.
 

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I totally agree. but some people are on really tight budgets and sometimes an entry-level rifle might be all they can afford. but, I would also suggest they do some looking around at the pawn shops and gun stores for a good used rifle as well. many times they can be found at deep discounts compared to their cost when new.
While some people may be on "tight" budgets,the majority of them couldn't afford what it cost to actually go hunting,unless they know someone with land or live some place with public land to hunt on. But even public land hunting isn't cheap anymore.

Most that buy entry level guns are either buying their first gun,have little to no actual knowledge about firearms,or are just cheap/frugal spenders.
While today's entry level guns are accurate,they lack many attributes of a higher quality firearms.

Cheap guns and cheap scopes just don't make the grade for me.
 

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While some people may be on "tight" budgets,the majority of them couldn't afford what it cost to actually go hunting,unless they know someone with land or live some place with public land to hunt on. But even public land hunting isn't cheap anymore.

Most that buy entry level guns are either buying their first gun,have little to no actual knowledge about firearms,or are just cheap/frugal spenders.
While today's entry level guns are accurate,they lack many attributes of a higher quality firearms.

Cheap guns and cheap scopes just don't make the grade for me.
Some of us actually own our own land.
Personally I'm not cheap. Or rich.
A dead deer is a dead deer shot with a 200 dollar gun or a 2000 dollar gun.

A firearm in the end game is a tool. Nothing more.
A 400.00 Sr9 or 40 will stop an attack the same as a 1000.00 whatever.

Some need their cresent wrench to be gold plated.
Others are fine with the plain wrench.
They both do the same job.

I'll submit that ANY entry level rifle and scope combo is more accurate than 99.9 percent of the shooting population.

That would go for handguns as well.
 

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My entry level rifle (Axis) had the bbl touching the side of the flimsy stock HARD and about an 8# trigger. That out of the box. I fixed those wonderfully economy attributes and yes it did shoot. Still felt like crap.

My used 700 ADL was like new, had iron sights and feels much better. Paid 300 for it (synth version). Add 15 for the epoxy I used to make the Tupperware usable.

Looks better too. It runs factory 80 gr stuff (.243 win, same as the Axis was) at .75" at 100 yds. What a turd!

The Axis shot 100gr factory to .50"..............LOL, I dunno what it'd do with 80 grainers as I didn't have any then and the thing was so ugly, felt so bad...........I wasn't going to test it.

BTW, The 700 ADL initially wore a walnut stock. Remington did go cheaper w birch in the 700 series, called it the Sportsman 78.

It was a no frills 700, not a 788.
 
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