Preface: my children are 4 and 6, love the outdoors, and will certainly learn firearms safety as part of their upbringing.
I am a fairly avid big game hunter and reloader, so I have already begun planning for when my children are old enough to hunt with me. Of course this means buying firearms for them way ahead of when they could possibly dream of using them. Currently, I have a bit of a conundrum with what I have, what I want to keep, and what I want to sell/trade.
Rifle #1- CZ 550lux in 6.5x55 sweede, Leupold 6x glass. Shoots great, looks great. I'm keeping this one for my daughter.
Rifle #2- on the chopping block- 1954 built Savage model 99 in .300 savage with leupold 2.5-8 glass. I haven't had time to really develop loads for it, but it struggles with 1.5-2" groups at 100 yards. Amazing to carry, points well, but accuracy is concerning. All-American classic rifle.
Rifle #3- also on the chopping block- CZ Brno mauser 98 action with custom barrel and BEAUTIFUL walnut stock. 7mm Mauser. Accuracy is good, rifle is beautiful. Leupold 6x glass.
Should I keep all 3, or sell/trade one away? Would a .300 savage be a better rifle for a boy to use than a well built beautiful mauser? Since I reload, ammo isn't a major concern, so that levels the playing field.
I hate to be the one with redundant calibers (I have 2 30-30's and my big game rifle is a 280ackley) but having 3 rifles for 2 kids might end up being too much. Thoughts from the sig forum?
Yes to starting youth with the fundamentals. That can start with a simple BB gun or pellet rifle. After that a 22 of sorts.
Some I used were just that, then a SS Marlin bolt-action 22.
Depending on how far hunting areas are, supplement backyard shooting, then eventually a range. One can get ‘quiet’ type 22 ammo, less noise than a pellet rifle.
When our kids(2 boys) were young, they started carrying a light gun(usually 22) while out grouse hunting. That gun was carried with an empty chamber, fundamentals. At times we would stop for some casual shooting.
For entry type deer hunting, hard to beat a compact 243. Off the shelf that could be a Browning ‘micro-hunter’, or similar. For a youth I like how one can work the bolt with safety on, as in the X-Bolt, though the older A-Bolt is workable.
With a youth starting out hunting, one should focus on them, not filling your tag. When together you are backup, if they miss an opportunity, no biggie.
Here’s another tip, when of proper age, take them varmint shooting. Find a place out there with the ground squirrels, or go to a State with prairie dogs.
I started my kids off on a Chipmunk rifle. It was really great for small kids and safe relatively speaking since it was a single shot.
If I were to do it over again, I'd consider the CZ 457 Scout or Henry Mini Bolt. The Chipmunk lacked a feed ramp which it made it difficult for me to load it.
For centerfire rifles, I'd wait until they have mastered the .22 LR. However, again pick a rifle that fits them such as the Browning Micro series in an easy shooting caliber. A nicely sized 30/30 rifle is a powder puff or perhaps a Ruger 77 in .357mag.
“Nobody can ever take your integrity away from you. Only you can give up your integrity.” H. Norman Schwarzkopf
.223 or .243 would be my first thought for a new rifle.
My younger cousins took their first few deer with a .223, a Ruger IIRC.
My stepmom & sister have a Savage .243
The Enemy's gate is down.
I have two boys and I simply can't have enough guns for them. Haha.
I currently have two guns that I would like for them to kill their first deer with, but by the time it rolls around (they're 8 and 6) the plan might change.
One is a tang safety Ruger M77 in 7x57. It's not the very same rifle as I killed my first one with, but it is identical. The other is a Model 70 Featherweight in .243 Win. I've had it for 13 years and killed more deer with it in that time than any of my other rifles.
I've got a safe full of other candidates that could end up in their hands, as well. I just want to make sure they each use a different gun for #1 so they can have those to themselves when I'm gone.
As far as what they're able to shoot now... they've started with a Browning BL-22 and then will also step up to an SA-22.
I'm gonna vote for the funniest frog with the loudest croak on the highest log.
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