I joined the 6.5 club today…

Mustangs Rule

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Feb 4, 2021
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564
My pre 64 featherweight is heavier than my CA Mesa 300 WM. 🤷‍♂️
I get the desire to have the lightest rifles,,,however.

Most hunters, rather than worrying about a pound on a rifle would be better served by taking off 10, 20 or even more pounds off their bellys. Hunters by and large are way too large.

As the rifles got lighter the hunters have gotten heavier.

On my Swede I have a traditional leather whelen sling. Weighs a bit more than nylon but works so well it a hunter can get into a sitting position which requires rolling over a bit,,,which gets real hard if a belly gets in the way.
 

JLS

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Mar 26, 2012
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16,134
Location
Almost Arkansas…..
I get the desire to have the lightest rifles,,,however.

Most hunters, rather than worrying about a pound on a rifle would be better served by taking off 10, 20 or even more pounds off their bellys. Hunters by and large are way too large.

As the rifles got lighter the hunters have gotten heavier.

On my Swede I have a traditional leather whelen sling. Weighs a bit more than nylon but works so well it a hunter can get into a sitting position which requires rolling over a bit,,,which gets real hard if a belly gets in the way.
Thanx. I’ll work on getting more fit.
 

Mustangs Rule

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Feb 4, 2021
Messages
564
Thanx. I’ll work on getting more fit.
I am 74,, it gets harder as we get older, much harder.

Last fall i had covid. Lucky I was vaccinated, spared my lungs. I coughed so much my back muscles got piano wire tight and I really pulled them.

All in all i was mess and weak for deer and elk season had gained a critical 15 pounds.

I could see the handwriting on the wall. It spelled the end of real hunting for me,,,forever.

It has taken many months to come back, yoga, stretching, pumping iron. I do curls with my old standard weight pre 64.

I am getting close again. Lost those 15 pounds now working on another 15 pounds. I want to get back to my high school weight.

The weight loss really calms the arthritis in my left knee.

My hunting partner of 30 years and i both took a "never will quad" vow. He is my age too.

When we can no longer hunt as vigorously as we have since forever, we put our rifles on the rack forever,
 

Don Fischer

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Jun 27, 2017
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The Winchester model 70 featherweight was a "featherweight" for it's time. That time has past, unless I pick up my standard weight model 70 in 270. ( 7 3/4 pounds)

I have the Kimber Hunter in 280AI (5.75 pounds), I miss the bottom metal and trigger guard, kinda raygun-ish being all synthetic, and not only does it make my 6.6x55 model 70 Featherweight (6.75 pounds) seem heavy, but it even makes my Sako Finnlight (6 1/4 pounds) seem heavy also.

The trend continues and there is no turning back.

A few years ago I replaced my old heavy Kabar hunting knife with a Mora 2000 knife. Also bought hiking boots that were like dance slippers compared to my old Norwegian welt hard soled Italian hiking shoes.

Of course, if I had to traverse a steep sided mountain covered with frozen crust snow I could never "knife edge" or "toe stab" across with them as I could with my old heavy boots.

My Model 70 Swede is a joy to shoot. Recoil is in the 12 pound range. A Swede loaded to modern performance levels is the lowest power I accept with full confidence as an "all around" caliber. It pleases me no end that it was an Olympic gold model winner in times gone by, was used by Scandanavian explorers of the Arctic for polar bear defense.

That the Finnish hunters who turned soldier/snipers used it to spread terror into Russian invaders into their homeland, is so much the greater merit.

As far as the Model 70 goes; on the barrel is says "Made in New Haven Ct. USA" and that means a lot to me,,,makes it feel lighter. The scope I now have on it is a mint condition vintage Redfield 2-7 variable, with the widefield front lens. It was made in Denver, Colorado. It is just such a cool rig and I love sliding that slim shnabel forend into a saddle scabbard.

Last thought,,,when I get a bit superstitious and want to ask the universe for some good luck, I can still "knock on its wooden stock"

I like that a lot too. Wood was once alive. Throw in Lapua Brass and modern Barnes bullets and the whole rig ready for the modern world and more than earned that one extra pound over the Kimber
Loved those old Denver Redfield widefields. have a 2 3/4x wiefield on a 30-06 I got new about 1971 0r 72. Also have a Denver 1-4x I got about the same time. It's on a 308 I let a brother have. Got to thinking and my featherweight in 6.5x55 also has a Redfield but it's the Leupold/Redfield and it is a 2-7x. That old 2 3/4x on my 30-06 is my most favorite scope ever. Had it on a Rem 660 in 308 for a lot of years and have shot a lot of deer with it. Works today as well as ever. It origionally had the old 4 plex reticule in it.
 

elkduds

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Jan 22, 2016
Messages
3,255
Location
CO Springs.
I get the desire to have the lightest rifles,,,however.

Most hunters, rather than worrying about a pound on a rifle would be better served by taking off 10, 20 or even more pounds off their bellys. Hunters by and large are way too large.

As the rifles got lighter the hunters have gotten heavier.

On my Swede I have a traditional leather whelen sling. Weighs a bit more than nylon but works so well it a hunter can get into a sitting position which requires rolling over a bit,,,which gets real hard if a belly gets in the way.
Good luck selling this crowd on the advantages of the sling and sitting position versus prone w object as rest. I've tried for years. Gimme that old time religion:

1657743690967.png

With cap on backward, it can even be adapted for metric chamberings.
 

JLS

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Mar 26, 2012
Messages
16,134
Location
Almost Arkansas…..
With cap on backward, it can even be adapted for metric chamberings.
You can forgo the sling and set your high tech backpack upright, between your legs for a rest. Mo beta than a sling, but it doesn’t work if you have a flat brim.
 

Don Fischer

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2,237
Good luck selling this crowd on the advantages of the sling and sitting position versus prone w object as rest. I've tried for years. Gimme that old time religion:

View attachment 229798

With cap on backward, it can even be adapted for metric chamberings.
I don't think there can be any doubt that prone with a rest is the most accurate most of us can shoot but I'll take a military type sling and proper shooting position any day over some kind of solid rest in the field. One thing wrong with the prone position is even though it's most stable it also lowest to the ground and at that, to many times ground clutter interfear's with you. My own prefered position has always been sitting where I folded my right foot under my butt and sit on it. Something else people either seem to forget or simply don't know is that quite often to correect for a rifle shooting off more way or the other, it's not the sights you need to move but, your body or in prone your feet! Your body not positioned well will put stress into the hold and throw the shot off. More the feet or body to correct, get the stress out of the platform and the point of aim suddemly start's to work again like magic. The sling actuall pulls the butt of the rifle back into you if it's used right. Pull the rifle into a steady, not stressed, platform and the rifle starts shooting better. next time your out shooting, before you take the shot, close your eyes for a moment and totally relax. Then open your eyes and it your not looking at the same point of aim, you need to reduse the stress in your body!
 

elkduds

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Jan 22, 2016
Messages
3,255
Location
CO Springs.
You can forgo the sling and set your high tech backpack upright, between your legs for a rest. Mo beta than a sling, but it doesn’t work if you have a flat brim.
Couple of my rifles, the black one and the FDE are finicky about price point and logo on backpacks used for hunting rests. Anyone else?
 

Mustangs Rule

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Feb 4, 2021
Messages
564
You can forgo the sling and set your high tech backpack upright, between your legs for a rest. Mo beta than a sling, but it doesn’t work if you have a flat brim.
What you are not factoring in with a properly fitted and used Whelen sling, is the isometric tension created by the 2/3 rearwards firm pull into your shoulder and the 1/3 push forwards to the sling swivel. This tension not only significantly reduces felt recoil by the controlled push forwards but also steadies the rifle more by having it engaged in a semi locked in control that creates stability.

Also, I can get into a Whelen sling in 3-4 seconds without any activity which breaks my silhouette with high visibility clumsy movements which also take one eyes aways from a direct line of sight at a game animal.

All the movements to get into a Whelen sling stay in my body outline with nothing going on high or sideways like taking a pack off.

Lastly taking off one's pack, setting it up and placing one's rifle on it, takes much longer and a game field opportunity can vanish in a few seconds and you are also much more terrain dependent setting up that pack.

Using a sling, your butt and legs naturally find where they need to be with practice, while your arms are automatically getting into the sling.

So sweet the sling is, lost art really. In days of old the use of the sling was a standard part of the Civilian marksmanship program even in the prone position where it also increased stability and decreased recoil.

By the way, I often hunt without a pack preferring a canvas shoulder bag that sits on one hip just as many African hunters once used. It goes through the bush so much smoother and quieter than a big pack. When stalking in really tight tangles you can wear it in front around your waist and clip it to your belt

That type of carry system is another lost skill.

I have been very fortunate to have had as my hunting/shooting mentor a retired and now long passed away Marine Lt. Col who fought in WW2, Korea and early Vietnam. He also hunted Africa taking Lion, Cape Buffalo, Rhino and endless plains game.

I am forever grateful for all he taught me.

He would just smile at your comments about how one should just "forgo" the sling.
 

JLS

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Messages
16,134
Location
Almost Arkansas…..
He would just smile at your comments about how one should just "forgo" the sling.
I didn’t say you should. I said you can.

Good luck getting a deer out of the country I hunt with a canvas shoulder bag.

I’ve killed more than one mountain whitetail with a cumbersome backpack on.
 

Mustangs Rule

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Feb 4, 2021
Messages
564
I didn’t say you should. I said you can.

Good luck getting a deer out of the country I hunt with a canvas shoulder bag.

I’ve killed more than one mountain whitetail with a cumbersome backpack on.
I apologize if I was sounding abrasive.

Whether one has a backpack or not, that does not change the merits of a whelen shooting sling. For many years I was a hunting guide on wide open grassy plains. Thousands of acres of barely ranches.

Over and over I saw hunters come out without basic shooting skill in places where the grass was so often too high for shooting prone. We hunted lots of very large true black Russian wild boar where there was not a tree in sight.

The biggest weighed in on the ranch scale in sub 359 pounds after being gutted. Thier sight is better than often stated. Speed of set up and shooting was critical. Using the Whelen sling allowed a hunter to pan and lead for running shots too, often firing again at multiple animals. Shooting doubles was common with occasional triples too. The sling created a tight fast shooting unit of hunter and rifle for repeat shots out to hundreds of yards.

One important skill was to never take the rifle butt down from ones shoulder while working the bolt. The sling kept it tight to the shoulder.

Often there was lots of running too. Seeing the boar heading out another way demanded really moving out and setting up in a few seconds.
 
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