I want to buy a used or new rifle (cheaper the better) and have it rebarreled to .358 Win. Which is the easiest to convert? Which is the cheapest? I am not looking for something to win beauty contests or benchrest competition, just a reliable woods gun.
Around here, Rem 700s are about $200 in the pawn shops. I'd get an ADL in .243 or .308 and screw a new barrel on. BTW, great caliber choice! The .358 has long been a favorite of mine, when I lived in VA. Those Remington 180 grain scalloped hollowpoints were death on deer at around 2200 fps, and light 140gr. or so defensive type handgun bullets will blow a groundhog to bits!
The savage bolt guns are rfeally cheap. WalMart even sells new ones dirt cheap. A re-barrel is a do-it-yourself project, even. Loosen the barrel nut, unscrew barrel, install nut on new barrel from MidWay or other source, screw onto rifle. Insert headspace guage and screw barrel snug. Tighten the barrel nut, and check with the go guage. I've seen barrels on sale for under $90 and a pair of guages can be had from GunParts for under $50 dollars. With a good vise and a little common sense, it's a snap. A normal barrel will run in the $150-200 neighborhood. For a hunting rifle the barrels from MidWay will do fine.
I had two Winchester 88's rebored and rechambered to .358 win. Both shot great. I think the .358 should be in a fast action rifle, I currently use a old BLR in .358 win.
But, if I had to start over again on a budget. I would buy a Stevens 200 SA and have it rebarrelled or rechambered and rebored. You can get aStevens for 289.oo including tax ! a Rebore job runs about 175 from Norm Johnson of West River Gunworks in Nebraska.
There may be better prices out there if you shop around. The Stevens advantage is a 22" bbl. and easy rebarrel job. Mid-way USA used to sell .358 win bbls for the Savage/Stevens but I don't see them listed any more.(youi could do it yourself.
I've used the .358 win. a lot on game, it is great.
I've been bit by the .35 caliber bug! I just bought a Douglas blank for my Rem 700 30-06 to convert it to .35 Whelen! Between that and the .358 that I am having rebarreled, it is going to be a great Fall!
The 35 caliber bug's a bad one. Most of the treatments are either rare-old or just unusual enough to cost more or a custom is needed. In any case you have my simpathy.. Have a great hunt and a safe one..
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