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Hi Folks:

I am pleased to announce that the latest exclusive Campfire column by Wayne van Zwoll (WvZ), entitled "DEER RIFLES THAT ENDURE" is now available for reading (please click link above).

Please use this thread to ask WvZ questions about the piece. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Thanks again, Wayne!


"What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as freedom should not be highly rated." Thomas Paine
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Not a question, but a comment: I loved that article. It reminded me that it is about time I took my inherited Marlin 1893 out to kill another deer, and I may do just that over Easter. The last deer I took with that rifle was a fallow I bounced out of cover at only a handful of yards, and dropped from full gallop. The rifle points and swings so naturally that it was like dropping a flushed bird with a shotgun.

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Great article. Old rifles have a soul! If they could only tell their stories.

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As a big fan of classic rifles, I thoroughly enjoyed this article.

The anecdotal hunting stories mixed in with the historical facts made for a great read. Thank you, sir.


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I love the Winchester 94, Marlin 336, and Savage 99. Most of my hunting has been done with those three.

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Nice article, well written. This year I am hunting a 60 year old rifle, made when I was 2! Hopefully it will help me feel a little more like dad and grandpa are hunting with me.

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I thought the Krag came out in 1892.

oops... I misread the text of the article, hence my post. I saw the line: "...the .303 Savage, which appeared in 1895. Three years earlier the Krag-Jorgensen..." and read it as "...the .303 Savage, which appeared in 1895. Three years earlier than the Krag-Jorgensen..."

so, never mind....




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I too enjoyed the article. My son and I both hunt with .30-06 rifles, his is a Model of 1917 that was "sporterized" long ago.

The only rifles I hunted with last season were a .30-06 and the .30-30 Glenfield. I enjoy using the older rifles and cartridges.

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nice read Wayne!

Kinda to quote my old buddy Kaywoodie:

" Don't trust a rifle made after 1947..."

Lotta wisdom in there...


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I share Wayne's "come home" to the "old but still good" rifles and calibers of decades ago. As I aged, my goals of using the latest and greatest faded over to those of my father and my youth. There is something more satisfying in using a rifle that is over a hundred years old and a cartridge that is considered obsolete when the animal in the hunt is yours. My last elk was taken at 174 yards with a 40-82 WCF single shot and my last deer also with a single shot in 30-40 Krag. I have yet to be sucessful with a 1886 in 33 WCF, but there is always next year. A good read indeed.

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Wayne, Great article!
While some of the younger generation are discovering $1500 AR's in 30-30 wannabe calibers, I have become enamored with take-down Savage 1899's and the 300 Savage caliber. Truly a great rifle to carry, surprisingly accurate, and most important, the caliber is very effective on game. Mine was built in 1931 and wears an old Redfield peep. I carried it on a Florida hog hunt last month. Pretty good chance this will go on a moose hunt next fall.
The rifle shoots both 150 and 180 grain bullets with good accuracy. I have settled on a moderate load of Varget pushing 150 grain Partitions.
In a more contemporary note, one of my grandsons used a Remington 700 270, that I bought around 1974, wearing its second barrel and 4th stock, to take his first whitetail buck, last fall. That rifle has a lot of miles and much of what I know about reloading, was learned with it. I have not always been a wise and conservative shooter. Yet, like the 1899, it is reliable and is building its own karma.


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While I routinely hunt and shoot sporting clays with 100 year old doubles my vintage rifles have been confined to Pre64 M70's. I recently added a M94 38-55 with a full octagon barrel and a M71 348 to the mix and am looking forward to getting both of these into the deer woods this fall.

In these days of the synthetic stocked rifle in .300 Super Duper Magnum with a Hubble type range finding scope it's nice to know that what worked 100 years ago will still work today.

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I enjoy reading anything written by Wayne van Zwoll. Another informative fine read and thank you, Sir.


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That was very nice.
Thanks Wayne.


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Originally Posted by dan_oz
Not a question, but a comment: I loved that article. It reminded me that it is about time I took my inherited Marlin 1893 out to kill another deer, and I may do just that over Easter. The last deer I took with that rifle was a fallow I bounced out of cover at only a handful of yards, and dropped from full gallop. The rifle points and swings so naturally that it was like dropping a flushed bird with a shotgun.


Thank you, Dan. The 1893 Marlin is one of my favorites!.... WvZ

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Originally Posted by Hammerdown
That was very nice.
Thanks Wayne.


Much obliged for the note, Hammerdown.... WvZ

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Originally Posted by Adk_BackCountry
I enjoy reading anything written by Wayne van Zwoll. Another informative fine read and thank you, Sir.


Thank you for the kind words, Adk! Good hunting! .... WvZ

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Originally Posted by GSPfan
While I routinely hunt and shoot sporting clays with 100 year old doubles my vintage rifles have been confined to Pre64 M70's. I recently added a M94 38-55 with a full octagon barrel and a M71 348 to the mix and am looking forward to getting both of these into the deer woods this fall.

In these days of the synthetic stocked rifle in .300 Super Duper Magnum with a Hubble type range finding scope it's nice to know that what worked 100 years ago will still work today.


GSP, I like old M70s too. Alas, just about all lever-actions and bolt guns built before 1964 have become frightfully expensive. The price of procrastination in buying old guns can be high and painful!..... WvZ

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Originally Posted by fishdog52
Wayne, Great article!
While some of the younger generation are discovering $1500 AR's in 30-30 wannabe calibers, I have become enamored with take-down Savage 1899's and the 300 Savage caliber. Truly a great rifle to carry, surprisingly accurate, and most important, the caliber is very effective on game. Mine was built in 1931 and wears an old Redfield peep. I carried it on a Florida hog hunt last month. Pretty good chance this will go on a moose hunt next fall.
The rifle shoots both 150 and 180 grain bullets with good accuracy. I have settled on a moderate load of Varget pushing 150 grain Partitions.
In a more contemporary note, one of my grandsons used a Remington 700 270, that I bought around 1974, wearing its second barrel and 4th stock, to take his first whitetail buck, last fall. That rifle has a lot of miles and much of what I know about reloading, was learned with it. I have not always been a wise and conservative shooter. Yet, like the 1899, it is reliable and is building its own karma.


Thank you for the note, Fishdog. I too like the .300 Savage. It's taken a lot of game bigger than the whitetails it's commonly paired with in print! .... Wvz

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Originally Posted by TCRken
I share Wayne's "come home" to the "old but still good" rifles and calibers of decades ago. As I aged, my goals of using the latest and greatest faded over to those of my father and my youth. There is something more satisfying in using a rifle that is over a hundred years old and a cartridge that is considered obsolete when the animal in the hunt is yours. My last elk was taken at 174 yards with a 40-82 WCF single shot and my last deer also with a single shot in 30-40 Krag. I have yet to be sucessful with a 1886 in 33 WCF, but there is always next year. A good read indeed.


Thank you, TCRken. I've not used a .40-82, but, like the .33 Win., it seems a well-designed cartridge. Clearly adequate for elk! .... Wayne

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Originally Posted by Seafire
nice read Wayne!

Kinda to quote my old buddy Kaywoodie:

" Don't trust a rifle made after 1947..."

Lotta wisdom in there...


Thank you, Seafire!..... WvZ

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Originally Posted by GuyM
I too enjoyed the article. My son and I both hunt with .30-06 rifles, his is a Model of 1917 that was "sporterized" long ago.

The only rifles I hunted with last season were a .30-06 and the .30-30 Glenfield. I enjoy using the older rifles and cartridges.

Guy


Guy, the older I get, the more I appreciate old rifles. The Glenfield line was Marlin's bargain brand. I've always thought its lever rifles as good at heart as those labeled "Marlin." ..... WvZ

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Originally Posted by patbrennan
Nice article, well written. This year I am hunting a 60 year old rifle, made when I was 2! Hopefully it will help me feel a little more like dad and grandpa are hunting with me.


Pat, all too soon rifles made when we were two become old rifles. If we're smart, we keep them! Thank you for writing!.... WvZ

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Originally Posted by moosemike
I love the Winchester 94, Marlin 336, and Savage 99. Most of my hunting has been done with those three.


... arguably the best deer rifles ever built. Certainly the most popular lever-actions of a century! .... WvZ

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Originally Posted by nifty-two-fifty
As a big fan of classic rifles, I thoroughly enjoyed this article.

The anecdotal hunting stories mixed in with the historical facts made for a great read. Thank you, sir.


Thank you for the note, Nifty250!..... WvZ

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Originally Posted by Dave_in_WV
Great article. Old rifles have a soul! If they could only tell their stories.


Thank you for the note Dave. Indeed, their history is much of their charm! .... WvZ

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Originally Posted by WvZ
Originally Posted by Dave_in_WV
Great article. Old rifles have a soul! If they could only tell their stories.


Thank you for the note Dave. Indeed, their history is much of their charm! .... WvZ


Great article! As I have added more years to my experience, I have determined that the enjoyment of my time hunting depends more on what I am hunting with and who I am hunting with instead of whether or not I am successful in bagging whatever game I might be after.

Several years ago I bought a Winchester 1894 in 30/30. In the hole in the butt stock was a note from a previous owner with his name and address. I took a chance and wrote the old Gent asking for any information he might be willing to share about the rifle. I let him know that I was using the old rifle to hunt deer with and it was now located in SE Georgia. He replied that he was now in his late 80's, had purchased the rifle in the 1930's and hunted deer in Massachusetts with it most of his adult life. He had only sold it when he was no longer able to hunt. I replaced his note in the hole in the butt stock, added his letter and one of my own.

Some Old rifles can tell their stories. My old Winchester 1894 can and now, so can several more of my rifles...

[Linked Image]


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Wayne, I really enjoyed the article, and a similar one you wrote for DSC's Spring 2017 edition of Gam Trails, entitled "Naked Rifles". Excellent work, sir, and I heartily concur. I had the great pleasure of taking a pair of black bears this past spring in Alberta with a lovely old Savage 99 chambered in 358 Win. I'm falling back to old rifles more and more as I get older myself. Thanks again.


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DocRocket, than you for the kind words. Those 99s in .358 are pretty scarce! Who would have thought in the late '50s and early '60s that chambering would bring a premium! Congratulations on those black bears! .... WvZ

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I just purchased a mauser 2000 I'd love to find out more about this old rifle but can't seem to find any info online if only they could speak

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Great article! I have a couple of pre- 64 model 70's. One from 1948 and one from 1960. Every time I pick one them up, I wish they could speak. What must have gone on in all those years? Just beautiful old guns, that bring back memories of reading Jack O'connor, as a kid.

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Originally Posted by Seafire
nice read Wayne!

Kinda to quote my old buddy Kaywoodie:

" Don't trust a rifle made after 1947..."

Lotta wisdom in there...


Had you and Bob been able to attend the Armijo Springs gathering this year, you could have fondled my new-old 1941 "Deluxe" .348 Winchester Model 71, the last production year before WW2. For its age, it is in beautiful shape and while hunted, it was obviously treated well.

I found this on GunBroker in Oregon, no less!

Norm


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Wonderful read Wayne thanks for sharing with us!

Like many of a certain “vintage” I killed my first deer with Daddy’s model 94 and have always had a place for the old levers in my gun rack (now safe). They truly have a magic that cannot be captured by modern rifles.

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I had the pleasure of joining the Mannlicher-Schoenauer club this past Spring. It's a 1939 production 1903 stutzen (6.5X54) with a vintage Hensoldt 4X in claw mounts. I managed to take a small buck (planned to take the first legal deer possible, buck or doe) with it last week and the satisfaction level was right up there with those where I've taken my biggest trophies. Believe me, hunting with classic rifles is the real thing!

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I started hunting with a 336 marlin 35 rem caliber, first deer camp was 1956 I was in awe of all the wonderful lever guns !!!!

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Always enjoy your stories. I started hunting in the period when a family likely had one deer rifle. Inn eastern MT. it was likely to be a lever action because it was so portable on a horse.

My first few deer were taken with a model 95 Winchester in 1903 (30-06). I too have gone back to my roots. 25-35,250 sav,and 30-30.

Thanks again for being here on Campfire.

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I also am found of older guns for the most part. Not 100%, but probably 85%.
I do own ARs and AKs as well as a Mossberg MVP in 308, but the rest of my rifles are either made on actions designed between 1880 to about 1925--- or they actually are that old.



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Really liked this article and it brought back fond memories of days past! Well written and entertaining. Being 79 years of age, I have had the good fortune to experience hunting with many of the fine old lever guns addressed in the article and in conversations posted here. Growing up in Iowa, I never had the opportunity to hunt deer with a rifle, but that changed when I went to work for the US Forest Service as Engineering Tech on the Plumas National Forest in Northern California in 1959. On my first deer hunt, I carried a "loaner" 94 Winchester in 32 special hunting black tail deer. On my next deer hunt I used another loaner from a Forest Service buddy; a really nice handling Savage 99 in 300 Savage. Then came 23 years as a Naval Aviator deployed on aircraft carriers or overseas duty; which in effect basically brought my hunting to a halt for that period of my life (1962-85). The first big game rifle I bought was a first year production Ruger 77 in 308 Win, which I used for years. It has a 3 digit serial number and I still have it and use it on occasion. But about 12 years ago I "rediscovered" the lever actions. In a short period of time (3-4 years) I had acquired a collection of 7 Marlins (5 variants of the Model 336,a Model 39A "Mountie" 22lr, and a Model 1894 in 357 Magnum). Four of my Marlin 336s are in 30-30, and one in .35 Rem. I love the quick handling and fast follow-up capabilities of the 20" barreled lever-gun; especially in the dense cover of western side of the Cascades and coastal rain forests of Oregon.

For my hunting on the Eastern side of the state I always used my .308 Win or one of my two classic caliber (dating back to 1892) 7mm Mausers. I have two of the 7x57 Mausers (one is a sporterized Peruvian Army Brno made (1938 DOM) Model 98 Mauser and the other is a modern Ruger 77 Mk II). I really love mild recoil and the great performance of this classic caliber. Yeah, I like the old rifles a lot!

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Great article, stirs memories of a earlier time in Pennsylvania as a boy


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I'm sure it's been covered, but I think the Remington Model Seven is about perfect for most deer hunting. I have 2 (260 Remington and 308 Winchester); these rifles are light, handy and accurate (1.5' groups). I carried a sporterized Springfield M1903 (30-06) for years and, as I advance in age, light weight and an effective cartridge is all I want.

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I’ve been hunting for 23 years now so am somewhere in the chasm between rookie and veteran. My first rifle was a well used hand me down Savage 99 EG in .300 Savage. I used it to take several deer over the years. I eventually gravitated towards the .243 and .308 Winchester rounds until I thought I needed a bazooka. Used an 8mm Rem Mag for a few years until selling it. It kicked like a mule. I inherited a .25-06 Remington and bought a .30-06 Springfield. The .30-06 is my favorite rifle and cartridge to this day.

I have bought and borrowed many others over the years but always find myself reaching for the .25-06 or .30-06 for 90% of my hunting needs.

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Originally Posted by 3006slinger
I’ve been hunting for 23 years now so am somewhere in the chasm between rookie and veteran. My first rifle was a well used hand me down Savage 99 EG in .300 Savage. I used it to take several deer over the years. I eventually gravitated towards the .243 and .308 Winchester rounds until I thought I needed a bazooka. Used an 8mm Rem Mag for a few years until selling it. It kicked like a mule. I inherited a .25-06 Remington and bought a .30-06 Springfield. The .30-06 is my favorite rifle and cartridge to this day.

I have bought and borrowed many others over the years but always find myself reaching for the .25-06 or .30-06 for 90% of my hunting needs.



By some accounts, the .300 Savage was an attempt to cram .30-06 vigor into a short action. Despite its modest stature, the Savage exited the Age of Optimism killing deer and elk and moose and big bears. It still can. The .30-06 adds yards, ....WvZ

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I liked the article. I always enjoyed your articles in the Bugle magazine, and are quick to read them when I spot them in other publications. The first rifle I used to hunt deer was a Ruger Deerfield carbine in Michigan's north woods. It was an ideal youth rifle.

After moving to Colorado I took up elk hunting. Although I used a scoped Rem 700 at first, what filled the freezer the most was a Hawken caplock replica. In spite of it's weight, it carried and balanced in the hand perfectly. Its easy for me to see why they were so popular.

The old Ruger is lost to time, but my Hawken and my Dads old elk rifle have the scars of use. I keep them clean and well cared for.

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Your book Deer Rifles &Cartridges was an inspiration to me. I'm a 35 caliber fan as they lead to short easy to follow blood trails. 2 years ago I got my first deer with my Mannlicher Schoenauer 1905 made in 1921. Last year I made meat with my Remington model 14 in 30 rem made in 1920. I love restoring and returning these old rifles to do the job they were built for. Keep those stories and reminisces coming Wayne we enjoy them!


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I haven't read the article yet, I've been busy with other things than guns the last few months but I will as old hunting rifles are very interesting to me.
I have severel rifles in several chamberings but my go to deer rifle is still a 1966 made post 64 Win. Model 70 in .270 Win. Yeah, I know, post 63s are junk with their rattly bolt and varnished pressed checkered stock. But the damn thing shoots like crazy. If you hold your nose while you cycle that rattly old bolt you think it's a pre-64. I was a dumb 18 YO kid when I bought it brand new in 1966. It was the first rifle I ever bought myself and all I'd ever heard or read was how great a model 70 was. I missed the part about 1964. I was so proud of it with its shiny stock and crappy pressed basket weave checkering. But by the time I figured out what I had it had grown on me and I had killed about 10 deer with it. And it killed deer very well thank you. I learned to reload with it and I actually shot it in some informal bench rest meets at our local gun club and won some trophies, this after I pillar bedded it and lightened the trigger pull. Anyway, it's 55 years old now so that should qualify it as an old deer rifle. I love these articles and I love this forum.

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Now I'm wondering, do I know earlyagain?


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Bought your Elk Rifles, Cartridges and Hunting Tactics book back in 92 and knew I would follow your writing from then on. Great write here, glad to see you on the fire.


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jay,

Unfortunately, Wayne hasn't logged onto the Campfire in over a year.


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