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As far as versatility...30-30. Also, you will give up rate of fire, but have great accuracy. People say the rounds are similar ,but that really isn't true, a 7.62 pushes a 124-150ish grain bullet at the same rate that a .30-30 pushes a 170 grain bullet. I'd much rather have a .30-30 for punching through things and general survival as far as taking meduim game.

If you plan on effective within 100 yards...why not a shotgun? Seriously?
 

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i would get the 7.62 for the semi-auto and mag feed also the ammo is cheaper if your going to stock up on ammo it can make a differance. but the 30-30 is more accurate
 

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My Winchester is no more or less accurate than my Yugo SKS. I'd rather have the SKS in a survival situation. Matter a fact I've taken more deer with the SKS than with the Winchester....
 

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Like LS-1 said then .30-30 is ruffly compared to the 7.62x39mm in commercial loads. Now handloading another matter all together. The .30-30 can spit both very light and heavy grained bullets to a point where it leaves the 7.62x39mm behind the power curve. The 7.62X39mm military and commercial rounds are really weenie loads compared to what it can be when handloaded and shot out of a BOLT ACTION. The Milspec is 39,000 PSI for the AK-47 action but SAAMI spec is 50,000 PSI for guns like CZ 527, Interarms Mauser X, Charles Daly mausers actions and limited run Ruger Mod 77 actions. One can also get a gumsmith to modify just about any Mauser based action to shoot the round.

The main differance is the platform that there lauched out of the 7.62x39mm can be slung faster, with more "BB's" per given mag but when one need both accuracy an reliability to shoot NON STANDARD ROUNDS like "game getters", heavy long range bullets and Auckley improved profiled cartridges the Bolt and lever actions when.

Another thing to consider is that if your worried about over penitration is a self defense secneiro. One can buy 3 common off the shelf .30-30 Win hunting rounds, that will shatter in 14 inches or less of flesh and bone. One would have to fork out some real money for a few rounds or handload God only knows what bulliet to equal it in 7.62X39mm.

In the end my choice was the .30-30 Winchester the THIRD most common and produced round for commercial sale in the United States. Besides, I always liked the westerns movies and TV reruns, I watched as a kid growing up in Cleveland.:cool: But if I had only a stainless Ruger Mod 77 in 7.62x39mm I wouldn't bat an eye as long as I had a reload press to go with it.:)


Rifleman 336
 

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I agree with both, they have completely different purposes. Once people realize these things then the will realize that they need two firearms.

Can a 39 hunt? Somewhat

Can the 30 be pressed into a defensive role versus MODERN weapons? somewhat

DO they both have their place in the arsenal? OF COURSE, one is on the battlefield, the other is in the hunting field.

With my apples to bananas comparison over, they are for most intents equal, could I handload some super cartridge in either caliber? Yep, is it worth the time? Nope. Would either one kill inside of 100 yards? Yep. Can they both be made dead nuts accurate? Yep. Can they both be had in combat configurations? Nope. Can they both be had in true accurate hunting platforms? Nope. Starting to see how without even comparing power levels or ballistics charts you can see how you need at least two weapons? Hunting is hunting, fighting is fighting. An 1873 revolver in 45 colt will kill you dead, but in the modern day my bet is on something a little more advanced, regardless of the use of the firearm.

My honest recommendation is to compare loads designed for hunting, with hunting loads. Then compare combat loads with combat. For both purposes out there, there are MANY loads that kill better than 30, and stop better than the 39.

I have plugged it 300 times before, but try a .270 or its parent the 30-06 hunting is internet easy point, click, food. I also wouldn't feel under gunned in a firefight with an 06 at my side, something I cant say for the 1894 rifle :)

YMMV S/H
 

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And since there isnt going to be any combat at less or more than a hundred yards, get the rifle that is best suited to the uses a person really has for a rifle. Which is hunting. For that the .30-30 is clearly the better choice.

No less a Doctor of Ordnance than Jeff Cooper, by the way, said the lever action .30-30 is a better personal defense arm than an AK47.
 

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Just a few questions. You do not have to answer these, they are just food for thought.

Is this your first rifle?

Do you hunt right now?

What is the size of the game in your area - eg: hogs, whitetail deer, moose, bear, elk.

How much money do you want to spend?

How much money can you spent in reality?

The sks and ak-47 is a better investment financially. Just because the 7.62x39 is cheaper then 30-30 ammo. Dont forget Ruger made Mini-30 that was chambered in 7.62x39. I dont know if this rifle is still made, but its worth a look.

Ammo for the 30-30 is going to cost 2X - 3X that of the 7.62x39.

An sks rifle, @$200+. A marlin 30-30, @$400+

For total cost of ownership, a 30-30 is going to be at least 2X the price of a 7.62X39, unless you go with a Ruger Mini-30. Those rifles will cost you at least $500, maybe closer to $600.

If money is a factor, go with a rifle chambered in 7.62X39, such as an sks. That is your cheapest route.
 

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ÐìrtýÐëëdsÐøñëÐìrtÇhëâþ
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Mini 30 Has a .308 bore instead of the .310 -.311 a 7.62X39 is suppose to have... Keep that in mind.

I have killed Many Many deer with a SKS, the 30-30 offers no real ballistic advantage, and a major decrease in Tactical usefulness. Unless the 30-30 Looks just trip your trigger.
Defensive round, like your Original post... SKS Hands down... Semi Auto wins out over Lever, Bolt, pump etc. every time..
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Just a few questions. You do not have to answer these, they are just food for thought.

Is this your first rifle?

No. Marlin 60, M1 carbine, M/N 91/30 Gamo Whisper .177 air rifle

Do you hunt right now?

Limited, but yes.

What is the size of the game in your area - eg: hogs, whitetail deer, moose, bear, elk.

A LOT of white tail deer, some bear, turkeys, and of course, squirrels

How much money do you want to spend?

< $400

How much money can you spent in reality?

Whatever necessary. $400-500 is NP.

The sks and ak-47 is a better investment financially. Just because the 7.62x39 is cheaper then 30-30 ammo. Dont forget Ruger made Mini-30 that was chambered in 7.62x39. I dont know if this rifle is still made, but its worth a look.

Ammo for the 30-30 is going to cost 2X - 3X that of the 7.62x39.

An sks rifle, @$200+. A marlin 30-30, @$400+

For total cost of ownership, a 30-30 is going to be at least 2X the price of a 7.62X39, unless you go with a Ruger Mini-30. Those rifles will cost you at least $500, maybe closer to $600.

If money is a factor, go with a rifle chambered in 7.62X39, such as an sks. That is your cheapest route.
My reasons for .30-30:

I can easily find several used Marlin 336 for < $400. I'm partial to them because they are a proven design. I live in a oak forest area where it isn't likely to have more than 100 yards of clearing. The Marlin doesn't scream out "assault rifle". Very non-threatening to the uninformed. You can re-load the Marlin at any time, as needed, to sustain a steady rate of fire. Ammo, although more expensive, is available everywhere. Very easy to find.

Reasons for the 7.62x39:

Cheap and lethal. Easy to find. There are no .30-30 semi-autos that I'm aware of. Nothing (short of a full auto) says "keep your head down" like the sustained rate of fire of a good semi-auto. (But the M1 carbine does that for me, even though its getting very expensive to shoot.) The SKS sure fits the bill and has better stopping power than the M1.
 

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Cheap and lethal. Easy to find. There are no .30-30 semi-autos that I'm aware of. Nothing (short of a full auto) says "keep your head down" like the sustained rate of fire of a good semi-auto. (But the M1 carbine does that for me, even though its getting very expensive to shoot.) The SKS sure fits the bill and has better stopping power than the M1.
Wolf ammo shoots just fine out of my universal M1 carbine. Aguila make a good .30 carbine brass cased round for a good price when you can find it.
 

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If times get really bad and if you're confronted by a number of bad guys, you'll wish that you had a 7.62 X 39 semi-automatic shooter instead of a 30-30. The 7.62 X 39 can be used for hunting and defending yourself and loved ones much better than the 30-30. Mount a red dot or scope on your 7.62 X 39 and you're far ahead of the 30-30.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Thanks to all who responded; you've been most helpful. Seems like the general opinion is that each is better than the other when used for its intended purpose.

So, 30-30 for hunting and 7.62x39 for defense.

Which means I should have both.

Since I got the semi-auto covered (M1 carbine) for now and I'm more likely to face a white tailed deer than a bad guy, I'll go with a Marlin 336 while I spend some time shooting a AK and SKS to see which feels more comfortable to me.
 

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personally i would go with the 7.62/ 308 round due to the ballistic performance of the round which with a decent shooter can get sub MOA at 600 yards and about 1 MOA at 1000 yards with someone who knows what they are doing. Moreover the round was designed for accuracy and with that in mind you'll find it easier to find ballistic data or "scope dope" for the round to increase your accuracy. the other advantage to this round is the fact that it's commonly available in a match grade bullet however if you wanted to go with the rounds you listed i would rather go with the 7.62x39 due to availability however it must be stressed that with either round you choose 7.62x39 or .30-30 your round will lose it's ballistic advantage at around 300 - 400 yards (i believe so anyways)
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I'm more interested in <100 yard performance. I live in dense oak forest country and I've got the longer range stuff covered w/ my Mosin Nagant 91/30.
 

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After spending some years in war torn countries and having my share of using the 7.62x39...I'd much more rather use the one rifle I have...the Marlin 336 .30-30. Frankly this is a toss up as both rounds are plentiful, as are parts. However, as stated earlier by Rifleman, if one reloads, the .30-30 out shoots the SKS. Sure a lever isn't as fast as the auto, nor does it hold as many rounds, but one can be skilled enough to top off rounds easily. Plus, you have the advantage of taking nearly anything on the continent (though if you aren't a skilled marksman, I'd leave the grizzly's alone). Also, a lever is always low key and wont ever draw unwanted attention like an SKS will.
 
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