rifle options for defense

Discussion in 'Tactics and Training' started by pilotbenjamin, Oct 31, 2007.

  1. pilotbenjamin

    pilotbenjamin New Member

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    I have never hunted as a product of being raised by hippie parents. I have never shot a rifle, I used to have a 20gauge shotgun for home defense. I was wanting help to chose a rifle for personal defense.

    This might sound kind of stupid, at least to the people at gunshops I try to ask. In my mind this is the scenario, it has hit the fan, chaos is all around I am in my bunker (apartment), and I see the enemy planning an attack at the street corner, maybe they want my food or water or ammo. or I need to move my location with "charlies" all around. I don't want to wait for them to come to me during the attack to use my pistols, i want to stop it in the planning stages. I had originally thought something full-auto, but ammo will be scarce and we don't know when the resupply will come, if ever.
    I think .308 because the military uses this and ammo might be a concern. I will not use this for hunting unless that is needed for survival in armagedon, and won't shoot it much only at the range to stay proficient. I figure it should be portable and somewhat easily carried with the rest of my armament.

    I was thinking bolt action, maybe like a savage 11fxp4. in 308. or SKS, ak47. someone has suggested all i need is .223 or .270 but I don't want to be outgunned. I know you usually get what you pay for, but in all likelihood I won't ever use it, so I kind of want to spend as little as possible. I figure I have to get something of decent quality so it doesn't fail, I would be looking for something less than $400. Any suggestions or ideas would be appreciated as I don't know much about rifles, carbines, etc.
     
  2. IrkedCitizen

    IrkedCitizen New Member

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    The Remington 710 is a decent rifle. It is bolt action and can hold 3-4 rounds depending on caliber. It comes with a 3-9x40 Bushnell scope and you can pick them up new for like 325$ from gander mountain and come in a wide variety of calibers. Reading about them on forums will get you a bunch of people hating it but they have never owned one. I own one in 30-06 and my Pops has one in 7mm rem mag. They shoot straight and that is all that is really needed.

    Hope that helps a little.
     

  3. Wulf

    Wulf Premium Member

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    Hiya *ben* :)

    hehehehe..."hippies". Ya gotta love 'em. ;)

    Anyway, I gotta Tikka T3 for $400, then shopped around and found a great deal onna Mueller 4X16-50MM Tactical for $125 on Ebay. Dayam, just remembered the rings and mounts cost me another $55, cause the OEM'ers that come with it stock are for 1" 44MM...which puts ya into a less expensive potential scope cost, if ya shop around a bit. But, the trigger is adjustable and with the synthetic stock, the 308 Win is an excellent option. Ya get good accuracy and very comfortable recoil in a light wt pkg. My Tikka is a tack driver and I put round after round thru Corona bottle caps atta 100 yds from a bench. And, yeah, the 308 Win would be a good choice of cartridge for SHTF scenarios "killin'-wise" for 4-leggeds and 2-leggeds. If ya really like goin' to the range and shootin' from a bench, I'd encourage ya ta do a little reloadin'. Craftin' your own bullets can be a very satisfyin' experience. And, 30 cal bullets provide a lotta diversity, from 110 gr'ers to 180 gr'ers...varmints ta bear. <shrug> If ya consider the 30-06 a "308 Win Mag", its a great choice as well, for the same reasons, though the recoil is a bit severe for the feather wt class bolt action rifles for novice rifle shooters, because of the recoil, IMHO. If you're comfortable with the heavier recoilin' cartridges, the 7MM Mag and the 300 Win Mag would be good choices for longer distances, but in your SHTF scenario, that didn't seem to require being spot-on accurate at 600 + yds. <shrug> And yeah, Savage and Mossberg both have an adjustable trigger in a very reasonably priced bolt action pkg, complete with a scope. Right outta the box, they can provide very good accuracy and a light, crisp trigger break that only a few years ago woulda had to be touched up by a gunsmith to get. <shrug> The Remington 700 bolt action is probably the most popular used by custom rifle ppl, so any Remington bolt action sporting the 700 action would be a very good choice, as well, and because its so common, the fair market value for a used one in excellent shape can put ya in that same price range. If ya don't have much time for the range, I'd definitely suggest a bolt action rifle chambered in 308 Win for your scenario. IMHO, ya can't go wrong. <shrug> Take 'er easy, Dude ... and peace, Man. ;)

    Wulf <-- goin' ta see if he can find his ol' VHS copy of Up in Smoke...again ;)
     
  4. Syntax360

    Syntax360 Premium Member

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    We're talking SHTF here, right? I am a firm believer in specialization for these types of scenarios. If you plan on bunkering down, a good 12 gauge and AR/AK/FAL etc. would be ideal. If you live in a very urban environment & the focus is on getting out or having to go mobile, you're going to want something compact/lightweight (AR/AK) that you can carry a boatload of ammo for (AR). If you make it out to the sticks and you are planning on playing the survival game, a lever gun (.30-30) and a .22 (rifle or pistol) will serve you well for hunting/last resort defense. If we're talking TEOTWAWKI or a Red Dawn type scenario, a good bolt action rifle (.308) might be your best bet - you can certainly put food on the table, and if you consider your odds of surviving an armed encounter with trained soldiers, your best bet is going to be to rely on distance and stealth (i.e. train to be able to hit a man-sized target at 700+ yards).

    So then the real problem is that you may find yourself in several of those scenarios, but finances or cirumstances (you probably can't carry 4 guns + ammo) may limit you to only one or two guns. The most versatile setup would probably be an AR-15 + bolt action (.308). This setup would enable you to defend your home, clear rooms/buildings, do sniper/countersniper work, and hunt for food - both varmits and larger game.

    A fine-tuned and properly scoped FAL/G3/M1A .308 could also be just the ticket (though maybe not the best choice for MOUT work) - this would save you from buying more than one gun, but buy in price isn't cheap and I would set it up so you can use your irons even with the optic attached.

    You seem down on the .223 - you should be aware that the military uses WAY more .223 than .308 - if ammo availability is the concern, .223 will probably be easier to find. Still, I suspect your odds of running into .223, 7.62x39mm, and 7.62x51mm will be about even. You say you do not want to be outgunned, but know that it is the shooter - NOT the weapon system - that will determine whether or not you are outgunned. If you can shoot .308 or 7.62x39mm just as accurately and as fast as .223, AND your physical condition will allow you to hump around a good amount of the heavier ammo, then by all means - go .308.

    Even though it's extremely unlikely would would ever fire a rifle in any kind of defensive/SHTF/TEOTWAWKI situation, a burglar or home invasion is far more likely than zombies or blue helmets. You said you live in an apartment complex? The .223 is less of an overpenetration risk (both in people and through walls) than your average handgun, let alone .30-caliber rifles - that might be worth considering. A lot of the bad rap .223 is getting right now comes from the military's use of M855 62gr. ammo. This stuff is not ideal for people-work, but it's a good compromise for a variety of military needs and the armed forces are not quick to change their standard ammo or weapon systems just because something better came along. Depending on barrel length and twist rate, there is a plethora of extremely lethal .223 ammo on the market that is much better suited for taking down 2-legged critters than the standard .gov M855.

    I would advise getting an AR-15 now and then getting a bolt action .308 when funds become available. Either way, let us know what you decide... 8)
     
  5. pilotbenjamin

    pilotbenjamin New Member

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    will 223 go through in infantries body armor if it had too. i have a vest and didn't want it not to penetrate their's That was my concern about being out-gunned. al-quaida like creatures in hum-vees, etc. I don't know about .223 but i will look.

    TEOTWAWKI thats what I meant to say.
     
  6. pilotbenjamin

    pilotbenjamin New Member

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    i found a savage 7mm for a good price is this a good round? having never shot a rifle is recoil worse, availability of ammo? cost of ammo? thanks.
     
  7. Syntax360

    Syntax360 Premium Member

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    This will tell you all you ever wanted to know about .223 / 5.56x45mm. Without going into a lot of detail - yes, it will punch armor with little trouble, usually up to IIIA. Once you get into III and IV, 7.62x39mm and 7.62x51mm are also going to be stopped by the rifle plates and specialty armor-piercing bullets will usually be required. That Ammo Oracle link addresses this point in detail.

    7mm ammo is going to be significantly harder to find ammo for compared to common military cartridges - stick to the big 3 (5.56x45, 7.62x39, 7.62x51). Recoil will be stout. In the 7mm variety, I only have hands-on experience with 7mm WSM, and it definitely humbled me quick - I wouldn't want to shoot a whole lot in one sitting. Overall, I would not consider this a viable SHTF/TEOTWAWKI caliber, though YMMV.

    It might be worth checking out Near Death Experiments. That forum has a lot of worthwhile info concerning MBR selection and SHTF/TEOTWAWKI preparedness. And you don't even have to peel away 18 layers of tinfoil to get to it, either... :lol:
     
  8. pilotbenjamin

    pilotbenjamin New Member

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    syn you are the king of acyronyms, i had to google like 4 different things. haha :D :eek:

    so 308 or 7.62x39mm are the same things?
     
  9. pilotbenjamin

    pilotbenjamin New Member

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    ar-15 is nice but out of my price range.
     
  10. Netfotoj

    Netfotoj Premium Member

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    Nope. Both are .30 caliber, approximately, but .308 is the civilian version of NATO 7.62x51mm; while the other is the AK/SKS round of Communist origin, 7.62x39mm. First figure is width of projectile, 7.62mm equals .30 caliber. Second figure is length of cartridge case, so the AK round is 39mm long while the .308/NATO is longer, 51mm, and therefore more powerful. Probably more information than you wanted to know.

    Anyway, as Wulf noted, the most popular rifle caliber in the U.S. is .30'06, which was the American military standard through WWI and WWII with the 1903 Springfield bolt-action rifle in both wars and the M-1 Garand semi-auto rifle in WWII. So if ammo availability is part of the plan, 30'06 is probably the most widely available rifle round anywhere. Used to be every mom and pop grocery store would have a few boxes of .38 Special pistol ammo and 30'06 rifle ammo on the shelf back in the good 'ol days, but still today if an ammo seller has anything, it will include 30'06. BTW, just learned today what the '06 is there for. Uncle Sam named the round developed for the 1903 Springfield rifle as .30 Cal. 1906, the year it was adopted, which got shortened down to .30'06.

    I recently picked up myself a home-defense rifle in .30'06, a used Remington 742 semi-auto with a 3x9 Bushnell scope for $275.

    [​IMG]

    The 742 is on top, bottom is my Ithaca Model 37 12 gauge pump with bobbed-off 18.5" barrel to convert it into a riot gun.

    Unlike Wulf and Syntax, I'd rather have a semi-auto than a bolt-action, but part of that is I'm left-handed. But I'd also rather have a second shot only a trigger pull away without working a bolt. And I've picked up some 10-round mags for my 742 so now all I need is about 500 rounds of military surplus 30'06 and I'm ready for when the SHTF.

    BTW, you did see the The Official SHTF thread didn't you? Lot of good stuff in there about how to get ready. :mrgreen:
     
  11. bigtaco

    bigtaco Active Member

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    i'm telling you, a semi-auto 12 gauge shotgun is the way to go. anything 30 yards and in is: A) getting hit, and B) going down.

    anything within 50 yards is taking a hit. and you've got a pretty good chance at dropping threats out to 100 yards.

    if the bad guys are 100 yards away... hide, run, ambush.

    having a few larger caliber rifles to choose from, i'd leave them all if the SHTF.

    i'm grabbing the shottie and the m9. (love the .40, but let's face it, there will be more 9mm out and about.)

    cheap AR's are going to be pricey.

    if you're looking for $400 bolt gun, i can't recommend the weatherby vanguard highly enough. i've put three in the same hole with mine... a few times.

    my buddy will say the same about savage rifles.

    remington 700's have a decent following too.

    but a bolt gun is long and heavy and the ammo is heavy and firing it under stress can be difficult...


    BTW, not to hijack the thread, but am i the only one who thinks that having a street legal dirt bike is the best possible preparation for SHTF? at least the ideal vehicle for evacuation purposes?
     
  12. IrkedCitizen

    IrkedCitizen New Member

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    When the SHTF I just want to be around when the dust settles. :D
     
  13. Syntax360

    Syntax360 Premium Member

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    :lol: Sorry :oops:

    No...

    5.56x45mm roughly = .223 = traditional AR-15 cartridge 7.62x39mm = "7.62 Russian" = traditional AK-47 cartridge 7.62x51mm roughly = .308 = traditional FAL/G3/M1A cartridge

    (there is also the 7.62x54mm and .30-06, but we'll forget about those for now).

    As you "climb the latter", bullet & cartridge weight increases, as does ability to penetrate through common barriers. Body armor shouldn't be confused with barriers in that sentence, as you jump from "all three popping through" to "designed to stop all three" when you go from IIIA to III (IIIA < III). The ammo oracle isn't completely limited to .223 discussion - there is some good info in there about the other two commons.

    If the AR is out of your price range, I highly suggest going with an AK-47/.308-Bolt-Gun (in that order) or 12-Gauge/.308-Bolt-Gun (ditto).

    The financial heiarchy usually goes:

    • Shotgun
      AK-47
      .308 Bolt Action w/ "Acceptable" Glass
      AR-15
      .308 Bolt Action w/ "Good" Glass
      FAL/G3/M1A
      .308 Bolt Action w/ "Exceptional" Glass

    I believe ammo prices currently rank: 7.62x39mm < 5.56x45mm (this stuff is killing me :x) < 7.62x51mm. Expect to pay top dollar for ultra-high-quality-sub-MOA ammo for your bolt gun (unless your just after minute-of-zombie accuracy). 12 gauge usually goes for just under a buck a shell. I don't reload, so I can't comment on the potential savings/cost-affect.

    It is worth noting that CMMG has AR's for $550. Every review I have read for one of their "bargain bin" AR's has been glowing... :)
     
  14. ChillyWilly

    ChillyWilly New Member

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    I say ak-47, then you can take the ammo off the bodies of your dead enemies since most of world uses the AK

    and a sniper rifle in .308 would be nice....you know....for gathering food.... :twisted:
     
  15. ThaiBoxer

    ThaiBoxer Active Member

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    I'd rather have a collection of hot chicks in EOTW. You could trade 1 hot chick to some wild-eyed, horny survivalist nutjob for a case of ammo, 4 lbs of C4 and caps, a 20lb. bag of rice, a case of beer and the rest of his beef jerky.

    Think it through. Hot chicks are better than rifles.
     
  16. pilotbenjamin

    pilotbenjamin New Member

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    with regards to the 12-gauge are you guys talking about full-size shotguns, or the smaller riot guns. I have been eyeing the mossberg 500 persuader.

    In a SHTF senario wouldn't bolt action force you to take better shots and waist less ammo than a semi-auto. I like the idea of quick follow up shots with SA but the ammo trucks might never come.

    And your thaiboxer your assuming I don't already have the chicks lined up. hah 8) :lol:
     
  17. babj615

    babj615 Premium Member

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    OR....

    The wild-eyed, horny survivalist nutjob could simply use his case of ammo, 4 lbs of C4 and caps to TAKE them purty gurls from you....

    ..and use his 20lb. bag of rice, a case of beer and the rest of his beef jerky to feed them all.....

    :wink: :wink:
     
  18. ThaiBoxer

    ThaiBoxer Active Member

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    He sure could. But if he's that type and gets the drop on me, he'll do it for anything.
     
  19. Syntax360

    Syntax360 Premium Member

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    If you know you must preserve ammo, then preserve ammo - make your shots count. You should do this anyway... If you NEED to lay down lead fast, then a bolt gun won't do you a lot of good. Like I said - bolt and semi auto combo would be ideal...

    And you guys are right - the folks who stock up on guns and ammo and know how to use it will likely not have trouble "acquiring" what they need... :? One should think long and hard about their priorities and potential risks with these types of things... Food and water stock (while necessary) aren't going to do you a lot of good if the crazy guy from down the street is going to blow a wall down and gas you out of your own place. And a sole bolt/pump gun may not be enough to dissuade him...
     
  20. pilotbenjamin

    pilotbenjamin New Member

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    i'll probably save up for an ar-15. what kind of range does this have 100yrds or so? thanks for all the advice everyone.