Bolt action dilemma ? - Graybeard Outdoors
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 04:15 PM Thread Starter
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Default Bolt action dilemma ?

Somewhere along the way I have gotten old. My rifles all seem heavier than they used to. I have a Weatherby Vanguard 243 that I painted white for hunting in the snow. With scope it is pushing 9 lbs loaded. I am looking for a lightweight 243 bolt action to carry while tracking coyotes.

I have found three comparably priced rifles and would like to hear your opinions on the three.

1st is a Weatherby vanguard compact. It comes with a 13.5 inch length of pull and a 20 inch lightweight barrel. Sub MOA is the Weatherby promise with this rifle.

2nd is a Remington model 7 predator. It too has a 20 inch barrel and is a bit lighter than the Weatherby.

3rd is a Mossberg Patriot. This one I know the least about. It is $100 less money than the other two but the one that I looked at showed promise.

All three are brand new guns......which would you guys recommend...pros and cons?

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 04:39 PM
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I love the Model Seven Predator and have owned them in .17 Fireballs, .204 Ruger and .223. BUT they are NOT really light weight guns. If you want light weight get a standard old style Model Seven with 18.5" barrel. They should come in around 6.25 pounds bare.



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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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I love the Model Seven Predator and have owned them in .17 Fireballs, .204 Ruger and .223. BUT they are NOT really light weight guns. If you want light weight get a standard old style Model Seven with 18.5" barrel. They should come in around 6.25 pounds bare.
I have also looked at a Kimber model 84. They almost seem frail. I am leaning toward the model 7 right now. I once owned a Remington 700 LVS in 221 fireball. It shot 40 grain V-maxes into a tiny group. It was great on prairie dogs but didn't anchor coyotes with authority. A 58 grain V-max out of my 24 inch Weatherby 243 running 3800 fps knocks the snot out of them. I will loose around 150 fps going to a 20 inch barrel but I have never met a coyote that would know the difference.

I already have a Zeiss straight 6X (fine cross hairs) that I will put on the new 243.

I used to buy a gun on a whim however old age requires that I mull it over for a day or two.

Thanks for your advice!
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-13-2020, 11:20 PM
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I think the Model 7 is the highest quality rifle of those three choices. Also has a faster 1:9.125 twist rate which you will appreciate if you ever shoot any bullets heavier than 85 gr. More options for aftermarket stocks, butt pads, triggers, scope bases, etc.

If you want a low cost- light weight rifle that shoots great out of the box you should check out the Ruger American.

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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 07:08 AM
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Ive got a 308 model 7 and had a 708. The 308 shoots fair (1.5-2) at a 100 yards. The 708 never shot a group under 2 inch. Weatherby makes a full sized lightweight vanguard now. I think id look at that. Years ago I was all about short barreled bolt guns. Found that in the real world even when trapesing around in the swamp even a 24 inch barrel is really not a disadvantage and probably worth the weight for the velocity gains. I also have a Kimber montana 308 that's both extreamly light and has a 22in barrel. Problem is its a very finiky gun and is at best a 1.5 inch gun (with one load) but basically a 2moa or more gun. If you do some research on kimbers youll find lots of accuracy complaints. For what I use it for 2 inch is fine but its not a gun id want to take out when the shots can get around 300 or more yards. Ill say this. Ive had 4 wthby vanguards and my buddy has 2. All shoot moa or better. He also has two Mossberg patriots with the flutted barrels. They are a cheap entry level gun that sure doesn't stack up to a vanguard or 700 in fit and finish. They have a cheap plastic mag that I don't care for but so does a ruger American. But the two he has shoot fantastic. One in 243 and one in 308. I might even be convinced to roll the dice on one myself. Another choice that's a good one and is cheap too is the ruger American I mentioned. They have the ranch model with a short barrel. I have one in 300 bo and its a SHOOTER. Its also fairly light and handy.

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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 07:46 AM
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Ruger American can save some weight...

...This one can save some money, but not necessarily weight;

https://www.academy.com/shop/pdp/tho...t-action-rifle

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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 07:52 AM
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Personally i think it would be hard to beat the 788 Remington for a lightweight walk around coyote rifle. Still some good ones around and prices aren't TOO far out of sight!
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 08:37 AM Thread Starter
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.
Ruger American can save some weight...

...This one can save some money, but not necessarily weight;

https://www.academy.com/shop/pdp/tho...t-action-rifle

.

.
I am familiar with that platform IG. They one up the Ruger American in my opinion. They are also heavier. I have one in 7mm-08 and had one in 243 but my 17 year old grandson in Indiana took that one home with him shortly after I got it zeroed. He's been sending me lots of pictures of dead woodchucks that it has accounted for.

Here is my scenario! In Iowa the countryside is chopped up into square miles with a road going north/ south and one going east/ west every mile. After a fresh snow I find a set of tracks crossing a gravel or dirt road going into a square mile section. I then drive all of the way around that section to see if the tracks go on through to the next section. If they do then I repeat until I know in what section the coyote stopped for the day. I then dress up in my whites. Grab my white rifle...scope, bipod sling and all are white. I sling the rifle on my shoulder and grab my Mossberg Turkey gun which is also painted white. It is loaded with 3 inch shells with BB shot. I also have a pair of white 10x binos that hang around my neck. Often a coyote will walk into the wind but not always(ones that have played the game before won't) so I will get at a vantage point above the tracks and use the 10x binoculars to track him from afar. If those tracks go into a weed patch and don't come out then the rifle stays on the sling and I approach at a snail's pace with the 12 gauge at the ready. Just as often the coyote will find a spot out of the wind where he can lay out in the open and grab some sun. In which case the 12 gauge my get left behind and I will belly crawl close enough to get a shot with the rifle.

I might be on that same coyote most of the day. If I find his nest and he has gotten up and moved then I have to rethink the situation. Did he run from his resting spot or just get up and walk away. If he ran then I'm probably done with that one for the day but if he walked off then it's still more of the same.

So you can see why the need for a light rifle. I try to move as little as possible when doing a stalk and moving that heavy vanguard from one shoulder to the other doesn't work. I have to make sure that the binoculars don't clunk against the slung rifle etc.. Once in a while I even have a pair of snowshoes on my back. They don't weigh anything but are one more thing to clank together and wake up a coyote. One little mistake 4 hours into a stalk can put the coyote on the run and leave me kicking myself in the butt.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 10:28 AM
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Personally i think it would be hard to beat the 788 Remington for a lightweight walk around coyote rifle. Still some good ones around and prices aren't TOO far out of sight!
They made a 788 carbine in .243 also. Hard to beat a 788!!!!!!!!!!!
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 11:23 AM
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Gpa;


I like your technique of hunting those dogs. I used to hunt deer in a similar manner where I lived about 40 years ago. Would simply walk through the woods in a nonchalant manner, until I scared some deer out.

Like clockwork, they would head for a stand of very thick hemlocks..then I would go low and huntthe hemlocks..looking for legs under the lowest branches.

Just out of curiosity..with .223 ammo more available and much less expensive that many other rounds, is a .243 necessary for coyotes?

Or is it a case of it being a rifle used for bigger game also ?

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