am I an idiot on rifle caliber choice?

toddwilson_@excite.com[email protected] Member Posts: 389 ✭✭✭
edited May 2003 in Ask the Experts
I need some help. I live and hunt in southeast oklahoma and will almost never take over a 150 yard shot at a whitetail.(200 max) The last deer I took last year was about 125 yards and running and I used a .243. But I have a cousin who lives in a larger metropolitan area who considers himself an expert on guns. He says 30-06 minimum for whitetail and will not listen to me. So we have decided to let this forum be the judge. I bought a nice savage 7mm-08 for my new deer rifle. Now is this caliber going to be enough for the above metioned shots or not. Please help settle this debate there is a nice steak dinner riding on the outcome. As always thanks for your replies. But even more so on this topic.


  • agloreaglore Member Posts: 6,012
    edited November -1
    Haven't seen a Whitetail yet that is as big as a Caribou and the 7mm-08 worked just fine on them. Tell your cousin to take a hike, he doesn't know what he's talking about as far as the 30-06 being minnimum for Whitetail. Tell all the Whitetail taken with the 30-30 that they weren't taken with the proper cartridge.[:)]

    Delta Firearms & Supplies

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  • gap1916gap1916 Member Posts: 4,977
    edited November -1
    Yes and thats all I have to say about that. [8D]

  • dustyholdustyhol Member Posts: 282 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    In my humble opinion your choice is a good one. Put the right bullets in the right spot and you won't have a problem.

    "Practice is the best of all instructors."

    Publilius Syrus
  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Member Posts: 5,777
    edited November -1
    The 7mm-08 will do everything you say you are going to ask it to do, and it will do it well. If you weren't having any problems with the .243, you should have stuck with it. The 30-06 is a fine deer rifle, but under the circumstances you describe it has no real advantage over the others.


    "To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them."
    George Mason
  • mrmike08075mrmike08075 Member Posts: 11,828 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    more deer and other similar size game have been taken in north america with the venerable .30-30 WCF than all other cartridges combined. if your shots are all 150 yds or less its the perfect round for deer. the guns are generaly inexspensive, and the ammo plentiful.

    the .30-06 is a far more capable round. it is the most versitile cartridge ever made. from the 55gr and 88gr accelerator submunition discardind sabots to the 220gr corlokt and the 250gr barnes and woodlieghs solids the loadings cover a wide bullet weight and type range. at distances under 150 yds there is little "real" difference between the two.

    if al you want is a sub-150yd deer gun then go with the .30-30. if you want a more versitile multi use cartridge that can cover more game at more ranges go with the .30-06. best regards, mike.

    What other dungeon is so dark as ones own heart, what jailer so inexorable as ones own mind.
  • bolthandlebolthandle Member Posts: 1,212
    edited November -1
    Todd: tell him you like "KC strips" rare, because there is nothing wrong with the 7mm/08. Niether was there with the 243. 30/06 at that range is overkill.


  • intercessorintercessor Member Posts: 436 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I'm a 30-06 fan, but just because it offers such a wide range of loads. I am also a fan of the 308 and its offspring, of which the 7 mm-08 is one. When it comes right down to it. if you can't place the bullet where it needs to be, shooting a .458 won't help. If you like it, you're comfortable with it, and you can hit what you are aiming at, then don't worry about what others say. Just be sensable, and don't try to hunt grizzly bear with your .243.
  • captkirk3@dslextreme.com[email protected] Member Posts: 3,804
    edited November -1
    You've recieved some Sage Advice and Good Answers....I wish You Well.....

    Captain Kirk, Tech Staff
  • offerorofferor Member Posts: 9,168
    edited November -1
    Your buddy has gotten in trouble because some folks, especially gun magazine writers, like to compare effectiveness on a man to effectiveness on a deer -- deer being about man-sized, but only in SOME parts of the country. Deer up here in Indiana and Michigan are far larger than deer in the Southwest, or so I hear.

    The "logic" is that if the .30-06 is the ideal mankiller in war, it should be the best deer-killer, man and deer being so much alike. Unfortunately, it is more correct to say what you've already heard, that for hunting even the largest deer, the .30-06 probably IS overkill and your rifle should do you very well indeed, and will not be likely to send wounded deer disappearing into the brush -- which of course is the nightmare scenario with too-small cartridges and bad placement combined. Yes, you have enough gun for deer hunting; a lot of them are sold for the purpose.

    While your buddy is not WRONG, exactly, since the .30-06 will be effective on larger deer (man-sized game) without tearing up the meat, it is more gun than you need and at 150 yards will very possibly perforate, making awareness of your distant backdrop even more of a necessity.

    Here, we have a lot of brush too thick to see through, but thin enough for bullets to penetrate over to the next farm or addition. Even in Indiana, there's not a lot of completely uninhabited countryside. In such a situation, "too much gun" is not a very good idea. The short answer is, contrary to your buddy's opinion, your new gun is not inadequate to the task. In fact it's right down the middle of what's acceptable, even ideal, for the task.

    Life NRA Member

    T. Jefferson: "[When doing Constitutional interpretation], let us [go] back to the time when [it] was adopted. [Rather than] invent a meaning [let us] conform to the probable one in which it was passed."
  • chiselerchiseler Member Posts: 18 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    My neighbor is 82 and has hunted since he was 11. He tells me that he has shot more deer (here in upper michigan) with his 22 (tho now it is not legal), than most men have shot with a 30-30. Like was said earlier, place a shot well and you have a kill.

    Some carve out a living, others just chisel.
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