New rifle


Senior Member
I would stay just a step above the .243 or 6mm. Prolly 25-06, 6.5 CM, 260 rem or 7-08. With standard twists they will shoot 110 to 143 grain bullets and offer plenty of punch with mild recoil.

Also, stay with at least a sporter weight rifle. Rifle weight has a lot to with recoil. Stootability and stability too.


Senior Member
Alexander’s in Blairsville has the Mossberg Patriot with a walnut stock for sale this weekend for $299.99. It comes in a slew of calibers. My dad and I own a few and they are fine shooting rifles!
As a couple people mentioned above, there many factors that contribute to recoil felt. Recoil energy created by a certain caliber, in a certain weight, certain powder charge, etc, are not the same as recoil felt.

Recoil energy is only an exact tangible number, IMO, when you compare different calibers of the same exact rifle. Otherwise, it's too many factors involved to scientifically do the math on paper. It's a good general guideline, if you have no idea of what type of energy a certain caliber produces, compared to what other calibers might be. That's pretty much what I've used those tables for, when I want to see what a caliber I'm not familiar with looks like in comparison, to other well known calibers.

That being said, I have owned .270's and 30-06's that I'd rather not shoot more than a few times, compared to my .35 whelen, that I'd shoot a dozen times, without bother. I'm not one to flinch from recoil, but I'd rather not punish my shoulder, when I can have the same caliber, in a rifle that is better designed to handle recoil.

The worst felt recoil rifle I have ever owned was a Winchester Featherweight model, in 30-06. It was a beautiful rifle, I bought used, but turn out to have a really lousy trigger, length of pull too long, inaccurate, and it kicked like a mule! I kept it a few months and sold it. In comparison, I had a Savage 111 in 30-06 that was an ease to shoot from a recoil standpoint, but ended up selling it too because of a few other things I didn't like about it. My main rifle is a Browning Bar 30-06, which is also not a bother to shoot.

Unless your just really intolerant to recoil, I'd think a 7mm-8, or a .308, in the right configuration, would be a good choice. Don't buy it in a lightweight or a featherweight rifle, and make sure it has a really good recoil pad. I started my son at age 9 or 10 with a .308 in a weatherby vanguard. When he shot it, you could see the jolt, from the shot, but he said it didn't bother him. I shot it myself, and with the stock design, and the plush recoil pad, it was a piece of cake. I could shoot a box of ammo without any issues whatsoever.

On the other hand, if you want lighter recoil, a .243 with the right ammo, is a fine deer round too.

I'd strongly suggest taking a look at the Weatherby Vanguard.......
One point I didn't make yesterday !

My 14 year old is absolutely adamant that our 6.5 has less recoil than his .243 Youth model . I can't tell the difference , but just wanted to share the info. Both firearms weigh the same !

One more thing I would like to share is that everyone has their favorite brand ,caliber , and load , but in reality almost all the above mentioned will get the job done in the range your mentioning . Decide on what fits your eye and hand in the price range of your choice and enjoy the Great Outdoors which God had provided .

PS: you can always go with lite loads in 308, 270 etc. they won't let you down at the range you mentioned .
I had though about a larger caliber with a muzzle break but I dont know if I really want to go that way. and a nice butt pad

I'll never use a brake on a hunting rifle.

Even with my messed up shoulder. If I need a brake that means I'm simply shooting too much gun and it's time to step down a notch or two and use something that doesn't kick hard.

You are in luck because there are more great hunting rounds being made in that interesting 6.5CM.

Nothing wrong with the .243. You'll enjoy shooting it, too.

The 7mm08 is one that I'd recommend you look into as well.


Senior Member
Years ago I knew a guy that went hunting in Canada for moose and wolves. He fell down and broke the stock on his 7mm mag. and had to shoot a 50 plus inch moose in the neck at about 200 yds. with his .243 and it dropped in its tracks. Don't underestimate a .243.

I meant that I dont hunt elk or bear now but would like to have something capable if I ever decided to. Would probably be in the east if I were that lucky for the elk and bear would be SE so no need for 500 yard shots.

I do like the patriot in wood, Have been thinking of the synthetic in the others just to dip in camo and not have to worry about scratches etc.
The 3006 I had I used 180 grain and didn't like it, so if 270 is close or the 308 is similar I will probably go with the 243. I just know it seems everyone is on the 6.5 Creedmoor kick, a little bigger and heavier bullets available, should translate to more energy? Without too much recoil?
Thanks guys for the links.
I had seen the mossberg for 499 with vortex 400 with other scope. Nice and tight bolt. A little heavy but thats wood and it looks and feels nice.
I had forgotten about the marlin looks interesting. Is there much slop in the bolt?
I didnt like the ruger when I looked at it- didnt fit me.
Have not seen a TC in person, dont want a 783.

I've been hunting with bolt actions for 25 years. I've gone all over the spectrum with cartridges....running from .308, 7mm08 to some of the crazy ultra mags.

One that I've always had a gun chambered in was .270Win. There is good reason, too.
It flat out works and works. The 130gr Core-Lokts and PowerPoints will get it done nicely on deer and not punish you in the least. There are a number of 150gr loads you can step up to for bear or elk.

Also for the occasional bear or elk hunts you's much easier to find the Barnes or Nosler Partition loads that will ensure penetration/pass throughs.

For normal deer hunting, I think you'll find the 130gr Walmart stuff will work great.

Rifle weight makes a huge difference. I've got a compact & light 7mm08 that thumps way harder than my 270Win does. Same thing with the lightweight .308Win I had.

Some of the flimsy cheapo synthetic stocks that guns many guns come equipped with have weird transfers of recoil. The recoil pad makes a huge difference. Changing out your recoil pad with a Limbsaver style will seriously help. They make one that can be fitted to wood stocks nicely. The M700 CDL I recently bought has this type included. The Model 7 CDL's I looked at did as well.

You post above seems to really be well suited for .270Win in a full sized rifle with a hardwood or laminated stock. 22"-24" barrel.


Senior Member
What Dub said very well. I am about to sell off my 7 mag, 300 mag and .270 WSM. .270 or .308 is all that is needed in GA for whitetail. Everything else is more money and self abuse in terms of recoil.


Senior Member
So I want a new rifle. I shoot a Marlin 336 in 35 rem with 170 (I think I know its not the 200) grain bullets. I like the recoil.
I want a bolt action for longer ranges and just because.
I had a 30-06 years ago and hated the recoil. I want something that doesn't make me flinch.
I don't shoot a ton and don't know a lot of folks to try theirs out.
So 243, 6.5, 270 or 308? I wont be shooting 500yrds or elk(maybe) or bear. I hunt Deer or hogs and 200yds max. I do want availability of ammo s I don't reload.
Thoughts? I will probably be purchasing a Savage Axis XP or a Mossberg Patriot, I will not spend huge money.
Browning xbolt hunter .308. I got one this year for $725 ( around there).

SC Hunter

Senior Member
In my opinion the best all around caliber for deer in the Southeast United States is a 7mm-08 or a 308, whichever you prefer. I have killed deer and pigs with guns from a 223 to a 45-70 and have a safe full of guns. The gun that gets the most carry time is my 7mm-08 by far. Sure if you are hunting bears or in grizzly country I would want more horsepower but a 7mm-08 does everything I need it to do.
A .243 with a quality bullet(Nosler Partition,Barnes) has penetrated(in/out) full grown GA deer for me out to 300 yds.. and killed several farther. It also makes a Heckuva Coyote rifle..if you’d ever do any coyote calling. I mean..a 55-60gr is right at 4,000fps..and recoil is light 😉 I have a 700 Mountain Rifle in .243 with detachable mag..and I will never part with it! My wife shoots it with 80gr Barnes TSX..and it’ll blow through any hog or deer in GA(broadside). Recoil is like a .223. A 7mm-08 would be my next whatever rifle you fall in love with. I’ve always had a hankering for a .260 Remington..not sure about recoil though. Heck,my go to rifle is a 7mm Rem. Mag Stock design & recoil pad make it tolerable to shoot,in nothing more than a t-shirt.


Senior Member
.260/6.5/7-08 is the sweet spot for me for deer. I know smaller calibers will pass through in the chest cavity, but I prefer shoulder shots and like a little more umph.

In full disclosure- I don't own any of the above calibers but have started the process of finding the "right" one. I really prefer a .260 if for no other reason than it's a not a 6.5CM. There's nothing wrong with the 6.5CM, and that may well be the caliber I end up with. But right now, I have several months to find a deal on a .260 and have it outfitted the way I want. My budget is not unlimited and my needs aren't for a 1k yd gun.