By Bob Shell
Apache Junction, AZ --(Ammoland.com)- While it goes back quite a way, low price good shooting rifles have really come into their own in the last few years.
Most of the larger companies have economical rifle offerings to complement their high price gun line.
I have tested and reviewed quite a few over time, and except for minor complaints, they perform very well. Frequently they are as accurate and reliable as the more expensive rifles.
The main differences are in the cosmetics and methods of manufacture. A high price gun has a nice looking wood stock and has a better looking blue job, neither which makes the gun shoot better.
Remington has been selling plain Jane rifles for many years. They came out with the 721 and 722 years ago and they performed well above their price line. I have owned and shot quite a few of them in calibers from 222 to 300 H & H mag and never had any problems.
They are strong, safe, reliable, and accurate what else can you ask for?
Later on the 788 made its appearance which is another low price and high performing rifle. Throughout the years, Remington has brought out other plain rifles to supplement their fine model 700 line. For info on their extensive line of products you can go to www.remington.com
A new one is the model 783. I received one in 30-06 which in my mind is the best all around hunting caliber. This gun is one of the plainest looking models I have ever seen though it has clean lines. The only thing in the box except the rifle is the ever present safety lock and the owner’s manual. I do wish they would include a scope mount, which would add very little to the cost of the rifle. I did get some Weaver two piece mounts and rings as I want to keep away from high dollar accessories to see what an average hunter on a budget can expect. And what a buyer should expect from this rifle is good accuracy, absolute reliability, and ease of use. And this rifle measures up to those requirements. A game animal doesn’t care about what the rifle looks like. The safety manual is pretty detailed and should be read by anyone buying this rifle. I left the trigger at the factory setting as it was just fine, not being too heavy. I don’t like a trigger under 3 LBS. on a full power hunting rifle.
I obtained a Hawke HK 3032 4 X 12 scope to mount on the 783. It is a moderately priced scope but has a lot of features that hunters should like. Among them are a green and red lit reticle and various other useful adjustments. The reticles are adjustable for brightness in both red and green a feature useful in less then ideal hunting conditions. I have used Hawke scopes in the past always with good results. Shooting with the Hawke scope proved to be a pleasant experience and I always look forward to testing their products. I shot it at various ranges and power settings at our local shooting range and the optics are very clear. That of course makes it easier to shoot groups at the tested ranges. A definite thumbs up on the scope well worth purchasing.
They have a great lineup of optics well worth looking into for more info you can go to www.hawkeoptics.com .
Various types of ammo will be used in this review. It seems that most info put out these days is focused on high tec bullets. Make no mistake, they work and work well. However, for those on a budget the old standby cup and core bullets work in most situations. They have brought home the bacon for generations and will continue to do so.
If I was going on a hunt for a real large animal such as a moose or large bear I would go with one of the high tec slugs. For deer and similar I would not feel bad taking a cup and core bullet. A good friend of mine uses a Remington 180 grain Core Loc in the 30-06 and always has good results. The animals in question are deer and elk. I have both factory and handloads in this review to let the reader know what is available. Some of the factory fodder is Barnes www.barnesbullets.com Double Tap www.doubletapammo.com and Hornady www.hornady.com .
All of these brands of ammo work well and are well worth buying and using. One advantage to owning a 30-06 is the endless choice of ammo bullet weights and styles. You could spend a year finding and testing the verities of factory and handloads. Then you would have to start over because of all of the new stuff introduced. I shot a variety of ammo at our public range with most loads doing well. This gun seems to like the 150 grainers a little better then the 165’s and 180’s though they all shot well enough.
The Hornady interlock 150 grain loads were the most accurate though some of the others were close. There is a price difference of $10 or so between the Interlock and the fancier bullets. With this setup I can expect 3 shot groups at 100 yards of an inch which is good performance from a hunting rifle. The crosshairs on the Hawke scope made shooting at all ranges easier. Once gun was sighted in hitting the 300 yard gong wasn’t a big challenge again thanks to the Hawke.
Like all rifles it has, it’s preferences on ammo.
LOAD BULLET VELOCITY COMMENT
65 X Super Performance 150 grain Rem soft point 2911 consistent
51 X WC 744 150 grain Rem soft point 2710 Garand load
Double Tap 150 grain Barnes TTSX 3072 fast
Hornady 150 grain Inter Lock 2836 deer
Hornady 150 grain SST 2793 ok
60 X Super P 165 grain AP 2865 high es
12 X Herco 165 grain cast 1440 nice
60 X Super P 168 grain Barnes 2838 very consistent
Barnes 168 grain TSX BT 2741 consistent
Hornady 180 grain SST 2764 good load
Winchester 180 grain Power Point 2715 very consistent
The market has a few good low price hunting rifles and if you are shopping for one, I would suggest
that you give this one a good look. I give both the rifle and scope a two thumbs up.
- New Crossfire trigger system, factory set at 3 1/2 lbs. and user adjustable from 2 1/2 to 5 lbs.
- Carbon steel magnum contour button rifled barrel
- 22″ standard chamberings and 24″ on magnums
- Pillar-bedded stock and free-floated barrel
- SuperCell Recoil Pad
- Model 783 accepts two Model 700 front bases
- Available in 270,308, 30-06 and 7 mm Rem mag.
- MSRP starts at $439.00