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Thread: At last! My very own first rifle thread!

  1. #1

    At last! My very own first rifle thread!

    Good morning everyone.

    Following from the success of my FAC application thread (!), it was only logical to start a thread on my first rifle. So two weeks ago, I ordered a Steyr-Mannlicher Classic fullstock in 7mm-08 from the Sportsman's Gun Centre. It comes as part of an unbeatable combo deal with a Zeiss Duralyt 3-12x50 and mounts. Now I had rather hoped that Father Christmas would wrap it and place under the Christmas tree for me. However the SGC have just heard back from Steyr and it won't be delivered until the end of January. The gunmaking elves at Steyr all go off to help in the toy factories or something for three weeks in December. It's a shame, because I always think that nothing says "Peace and goodwill to all men" like new firearms.

    Still, that means I should have it a fortnight or so before I go back to SikaMalc's, so I should be able to squeeze in a monster session at the BSRC in Bisley to test as many factory loads as I can lay my hands on and to generally acquaint myself with my rifle. So for the next couple of months, I can amuse myself by playing "find 7mm08 ammunition in London gunshops". I suppose there's a sort of pleasant narrative symmetry to the fact that I'll be going stalking with my new rifle exactly one year after taking my DSC1. But I would happily swap the narrative for an earlier delivery!

  2. #2
    nice one will look forward to seeing pictures i do love a stutzen rifle they have a fantastic balance to them ,atb wayne
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  3. #3
    sounds like a good combination,
    should give you a lifetime of use.

    Hey had to visit the Gun Centre site....brill... a few clicks on the computer
    and youve got a super rifle combination. just nearly bought one.

  4. #4
    Thought about getting into reloading? - I'm surprised how cheap you can start, in fact one session of trying 5 or more boxes of ammo at bisley will probably equate to the same amount of cash as basic reloading set up...

    7-08 ammo isn't easy to find, and it's not cheap compared to more common calibres either... plus it gives you something shooting-related to do when you're stuck inside!

    I'm reloading for my .243 at the moment (awaiting my 7-08 from B&N) - been lucky enough to be shown how to do it, but once you've learnt how not to blow yourself up it actually makes sense and is very therapeutic.

    Thinking about how much money I'd have saved over the last decade of throwing rounds down bisley actually brings a little tear to my eye!

  5. #5
    Good news Pine Martin! I too am awaiting delivery of my first deer calibre rifle. Its an Anschtuz 1780. I ordered it two weeks ago, expecting a long wait and miraculously it arrive at the RFD the very next day. Now I am waiting for the gunsmith to chop 2" off the barrel and screw cut it. I believe it is currently at the proof house awaiting testing. With a bit of luck I might just get my hands on it this week!

    Keep us posted when yours arrives, I hope the wait isnt killing you like it is me!

  6. #6
    When it eventually arrives you'll forget about having to wait, but I sympathise with your anguish. I telephoned around the UK to find my chosen first rifle and luckily found one in stock but it still felt like an eternity for it just to be delivered the length of the country from Exeter RFD to Inverurie RFD after I'd paid for it!

  7. #7
    Good luck with the new rifle. As others have said with going the 7-08 route it might make sense to reload as then you can ensure some continuity of supply. With factory ammo you will have to deal with the British Gunshop Teeth Sucking Marathon - everytime you go into a gunshop you will be met with much teeth sucking when you ask for something. Even worse is that they will sell you a box or two of Brand X ammo and just when you get the rifle zeroed with it and go back for more you'll once again be met with a high level of teeth sucking and will find that all they can offer you is Brand Y. Once you get zeroed with Brand Y you will run out of ammo and...

    If you don't reload you can go around this loop for ever constantly rezeroing and finding there is no time to shoot any deer.

    Muir on here is an expert on the Lee Classic Loader which is a sort of reloading press you hit with a hammer. They are very inexpensive and you could be up and running for not a lot of cash. You really, really, don't need to buy any of the gadgets and tools people tell you are necessary. A press of some description, a scale, something to trim your case length, a powder funnel to pour the powder into the case and maybe a trickler and a set of calipers (buy cheap Chinese ones around 15 and not expensive reloading brand ones) to measure stuff and you are away. Add in cases, primers, powder and bullets and you will be all set up.

    If you have the 7-08 on your ticket already then there is probably no reason why you couldn't start gathering up stuff for your reloading right now and it would give you something to do while you wait for the rifle to arrive. My money says there will be a 7-08 load that works for nearly everyone that would make a good starting point for you so although load development can take time if you are trying to wring the last drop of accuracy or velocity out of it if you are happy enough with something "fit for purpose" then you should have a good load in no time at all.

    Of course you still have to face the teeth sucking marathon when you go to buy reloading supplies but if you keep a little buffer supply of components then you will be set up for deer stalking purposes (unless you shot a lot of deer) for a long time.
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  8. #8
    BunnyDoom, I'm not planning on starting to reload at the moment, but who knows what the future holds... At least one other SD member has put me on the path to cheaper ammunition in the future once I work out exactly what works for my rifle. I'm not sure that I need any more shooting-related activities when I'm at home. The place is already covered in books and magazines and my conversation is littered with stuff that no-one else around me cares about much.

    The wait will be worth it, especially as I won't have to wait for ages before taking it out stalking. It's like waiting for my FAC: I've already forgotten that it took most of a year to obtain it. I'll post some pictures when I have it, especially as by then I will have a full set of matching leather accessories made by JasonH to go with it.

  9. #9
    Out of curiosity, what possessed you to get a 7mm-08??

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Mungo View Post
    Out of curiosity, what possessed you to get a 7mm-08??
    I just wanted to be awkward to people in London gunshops, that's all... Actually that's not the reason. From the off, I wanted the Mannlicher stutzen because of handling, stock fit and on aethetic grounds. Now they have short barrels (20") so there's no point in having one in a cartridge that needs a longer barrel to perform at its' best like a .270: you'd just end up with a massive bang and a fireball, which is all just wasted energy. In addition, I wanted to be able to take my rifle to shoot boar in France with my brother-in-law if he ever gets his act together on that front, so that excludes any military calibres. So no .308, .30-06, 6.5x55. Pretty much all of my stalking is in woodland/fields in the South, probably after mostly roe, muntjac and the odd fallow, but I also need to be able to shoot boar, so the .243 was out. So there you have it, I needed a round that works well in short barrels, is legal in France and can deal with game from muntjac to boar. It's really by elimination.
    Last edited by Pine Marten; 26-11-2012 at 15:05.

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