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African Hunting Rifles - 80 percent lower

A very first time hunter to Africa will have usually have selected his rifle by walking into a gun shop in his hometown and told the person the shop he requires a rifle for African hunting. He'll probably go out with a rifle that may or may not be the perfect calibre and/or finish but it may well function as the rifle that gives the shop owner (who could well have not been on an African hunting safari) the highest profit margin.

First, let's go through the basics...

Africa is certainly caused by bright sunny, dry and hot. This means that a gloss finished rifle is a step in the wrong direction. Any rifle that gleams is the wrong rifle for an African hunting safari. You'll need to attempt to buy something that's a matt or parkerised finish on the metalwork and telescopic sight and either a dullish, oiled finish wood stock or if you like a manufactured (but still non-reflective) stock.

Long barrels can be a problem in Africa. This really is due to the fact you will spend a reasonable period of time carrying it in your shoulder, and a long barrel sticks up higher and reflects greater than a short barrel. One way to get over this really is to find yourself in the 80 percent lower habit of carrying a long barrelled rifle in the muzzle down position. It's also recommended to put a piece of insulating tape over the conclusion of the barrel to help keep the dust out. Shorter barrels also make for faster target acquisition and pointability.

Hunting rifles which are legal in Africa belong to 4 basic categories....

There's the single shot actions such as the famous "falling block ".These could be discounted immediately to be not even close to ideal by dint of the being too slow to reload.

Then comes the underlever actions, the bolt actions (including the straight pull bolts such as for instance Blaser make) and then your famous double rifles made by such distinguished companies as Holland & Holland and Westley Richards in the UK and Heym in Germany.

These action types are suitable for Africa. Although most underlever rifles rarely come in suitable calibres for most dangerous game species and should therefore be discounted for dangerous game hunting with the exception perhaps of the big cats.

The bolt action rifles are undoubtedly the most used range of hunters worldwide. Probably among the most used and reliable types of bolt action rifles will be the Mauser controlled feed variants. We use these actions in.404 Jeffery on our company loaner rifles. Don't believe push feed rifles should really be ruled out though, my own personal Dangerous Game rifle is a force feed action made by Sabi Rifles in South Africa. It's a bit battered nowadays, but it's never allow me to down, shoots as straight as a die and I like it dearly. The straight pull bolt rifles are a great choice (especially) for left-handed shooters as left and right-handed bolts can often be utilized in the exact same rifle. Removable magazines are an arguable point. Personally I don't like them much at all, as they are able to fallout or even correctly located and some hunters (especially in moments of excitement) drop them from time and energy to time. This means that they end up covered in dust and then need certainly to brushed off before they may be replaced in the rifle......Murphy's law decrees that this may always happen at the worst possible moment!

Double rifles, although a little on the heavy side certainly are a pleasure your can purchase and use and more regularly than not, a great investment as well !.Having said that they are somewhat more expensive when compared to a bolt action rifle and i think somewhat restricting in their use for their design. Doubles really only come within their own when hunting Dangerous Game at close range as they do, certainly, enable a faster second shot than every other action type. The drawback of the rifles is they need plenty of practice before you shoot them really well. From our experience, at the least 50% of hunting clients who use double rifles can't shoot them as accurately as they ought to manage to or as accurately as they think they can. Some modern doubles are in possession of a cocking lever instead of the more traditional safety catch. Personally, i don't like these at all as i think, the point of having a double is speed of use. The cocking lever removes some of the speed. It's fairly rare to see a double rifle fitted with a scope but personally, I do believe it's a great idea to fit a low power scope with QD mounts. It generates the rifle far more versatile and often helps dramatically with the fundamental placement of the first shot.

Whenever choosing the larger calibres one factor that needs special attention is recoil. You ought to never purchase a rifle that you can't learn how to shoot confidently and competently. If you flinch at the shot then you need certainly to either think of buying a smaller calibre or consider a muzzle brake or better still, a mercury tube or tungsten bead recoil arrester fitted into the stock. Personally, i shoot a brief barrelled.500 Jeffrey with a mercury tube in the stock that tames the rifle down from a teeth-rattling demon to a pussycat......well, almost!

Most African countries have some sort of minimum requirement to hunt any dangerous game. Excepting leopard this commonly equals around 4000 foot pounds and a bullet weight of 300 grains or so. That subsequently equals a minimum calibre of.375 H&H magnum. However, i think, a.416 kills a lot better than a.375 and a.458 a lot better than a.416, and so on.

Telescopic sights certainly are a very personal issue and most hunters will tell you to pay additional money with this than on their rifles. I'm not completely sure that I accept this. Technology has advanced so much nowadays that an affordable high quality Tasco scope, for example, will perform pretty well on all but the heaviest recoiling rifles. When buying a scope for the long range hunting safaris such as for instance in the Kalahari then something such as a 6-10 power scope is a great choice and something such as a 3-6 power for the closer bushveldt hunting. If you'll need a scope in your dangerous game rifle then a 1.5-4 is approximately right. It seems to be remarkably popular to purchase scopes with straight tubes for Africa. I don't accept this. Sure they look'classic Africa'but they do not offer you any light advantage in early or late light conditions. The scopes we fit on our own.404 Jeffery (company loaner) rifles are Swarovski 1.5 - 6 x 42. The unrelenting march of technology has seen recent introductions of numerous improvements to scopes such as for instance illuminated reticules, if you're planning to go this route, you either need certainly to learn to obtain the scope set to the proper setting in sufficient time ahead of the shot, or you will need to manage to set it quickly. If you take too much time messing around with dozens of switches etc, you'll miss your shooting opportunity. Personally, I prefer to help keep it simple and use a traditional scope.

Good Quality QD scope mounts on the plains game rifles are recommended and if you place a scope in your dangerous game rifle, and I would suggest you do, they should be thought about as absolutely mandatory. Your dangerous game rifle also needs to be fitted with picking a open sights, but remember you will need to see just as much of what's trying to stamp for you as possible. My own'charge stopper'is fitted with a shallow vee rear sight and a large red fibre optic foresight. The sights are set as to the I was taught to make reference to as'six o clock hold, this means the shooter sees just as much of what's trying to nail him as possible. This setup works like a desire for me, especially in low light conditions such as for instance are present in the real thick bush that wounded game like to cover up in. Those silly little pop-off scope protectors should really be avoided just like the plague as they always make a noise whenever you open them thus alerting the game and if your scope can't cope with the rigours of the African bush without these exact things then you have the wrong scope in your rifle.

Open sights should be thought about essential on an African rifle. Plains game rifles usually have a scope, but a scope can go wrong. When you yourself have open sights as well, you are able to always take the scope off and shoot with open sights. For dangerous game, they're a lot more needed for the most obvious reason. Concerning which type of open sights, Personally, i such as a shallow vee rearsight and a red fibre optic foresight, but there are plenty of choices out there for you to choose from. When you yourself have a military background, you could like to take into account a peep sight. If you're unsure of how to adjust open sights, the easy rule is to go the rearsight into the error. Therefore, if the rifle shoots to the left of where you're aiming, slacken off the rearsight and move it slightly to the left.

For the goal of this discussion on rifles, African hunting may be split into 3 basic categories:

Firstly there's the open, long range shooting for species such as for instance Springbuck, oryx and other desert animals. This kind of hunting obviously requires a set shooting calibre with an increased power scope. I won't get into calibre choice here apart from to express that I would personally suggest that for almost any African hunting whatsoever you view a.30 calibre as your absolute minimum. Although it's possible to utilize smaller calibres than this they leave a lot less margin for error and as you're spending so much money in your safari it's worth utilizing the best tool for the job.

The 2nd category is the absolute most common. This really is bushveldt hunting where nearly all your shots will be 50-100 yards or so. 150-200 yards would be the exception.

The next category is dangerous game hunting where you can be pretty sure that all shots will be no further than 60 yards and often closer than 20 yards. I've been hunting dangerous game for 28 years now and with one exception, the longest first shot any client of mine has ever taken at dangerous game is 60 yards. The closest was an unexpected distance of just 4 yards. Charges, should they happen, can often be measured in feet rather than yards.

Whatever rifle and calibre you opt for it's also advisable to think hard about picking a bullet design.

As a principle you need to use a quick expanding bullet for lion and leopard and all but the greatest of plains game. Our choice in a.30 calibre rifle is Winchester Silvertip or Woodleigh Soft Point.

A slower expanding bullet for Eland and Cape Buffalo. I like Barnes X, Barnes TSX or Woodleigh Protected Soft Point.

A high quality solid, preferably a monolithic solid for elephant, hippo & rhino and for following up anything big & wounded. Clients with double rifles will prefer to use a full metal jacket solid rather than a monolithic, but from my experience they do not generally perform or penetrate quite so well and tend to be more inclined to distort. Our range of monolithic solid for my own personal dangerous game rifle is the GS Custom flat nosed monolithic solid which from my experience has phenomenal penetration.