View Full Version : What kind of hunting rifle should I write into my novel?
06-21-2002, 07:31 PM
Well, here's a weird question for the week...As the title hints at, I'm working on a story concept (Not sure if I'm going to try to make it into a novel, or a screenplay, or what) and I need a suggestion for a run of the mill hunting rifle for a character to wield. The rest of the story is kind of a techno-thriller, cyberpunk type deal, but I wanted to add a "nostalgic" touch by giving this character an older rifle for their personal use. Not like a Dragunov or an AR-70 or anything, a good, old-fashoned, wooden stocked, maybe even bolt or lever action, hunting rifle.
Now, my area of "expertise" (Or at least, area of non utter-incompetance) is in modern military weapons, not sporting arms. Are there any hunter or outdoor-type dopers here who could give this jaded child of the MTV Generation a tips on classic American firearms?
Well, thanks for your patience,
(Lord and master of run-on sentences.)
06-21-2002, 07:54 PM
If you're going to be writing much about shooting, I reccommend checking out Stephen Hunter's "Point of Impact" and "A Time to Hunt".
Go with a Remington 700 bolt action. Or, if you're looking for a little more nostalgia, a Lee Enfield or Springfield will put a nice early 20th Century patina on your story.
I think the Winchester Model 70 in .270 would be a classic deer rifle in any genre.
06-21-2002, 08:17 PM
How about a Martini? Single shot, so you have to make that shot count, ingenious but rugged tilting-block action, big bore, hard hitting, tough as nails.
Training yourself to lower the action, extract a hot spent cartridge, insert a fresh round, and pull up the lever to fire again is an art in and of itself, and watching someone do it fast is like ballet.
Michael Caine used one in "Zulu", the harpoon gun used to harpoon the shark in Jaws was a Martini.
06-21-2002, 08:53 PM
Marlin lever-action 30-30.
06-21-2002, 09:37 PM
I would second a Lee-Enfield bolt action. Maybe bought through mail-order from liquidate surplus military stock and sporterize. These rifles and others were commonly sold this way before the Gun Control Act of 1968.
For a more American rifle you might try a pre-1964 Winchester Model 70 in .30-'06 caliber. A popular and prized rifle among hunters and collectors.
For oddity, and an even older feel, you might try a Krag-Jorgensen bolt-action rifle from Norway. It had a side-loading magazine, and was carried by US troops for a time in the late 19th and very early 20th century. Watch the old Sean Connery film The Wind And The Lion to see US troops carrying it. But the cartridge was considered underpowered, so your shooter had better be a very good shot.
06-22-2002, 09:10 AM
A .30-.30 Winchester model '94 with a hexagon barrel or a 30-40 Krag.
06-22-2002, 10:39 AM
Speaking from experience no matter which rifle you choose, you will get more letters on the (incorrect) choice of it than any other part of your piece.
I would go for the afore-mentioned Remington 700. It was/is a pretty common weapon. Nothing spectacular but an afordable, solid, dependable bolt-action hunting rifle.
06-22-2002, 01:11 PM
Is it for a villain?
How about a Mannlicher-Carcano (what Oswald used to assassinate JFK.
This rifle has a wooden stock, was the standard Italian Army issue for a half-century, and was an effective infantry weapon.
Any of these should work suggested above should work fine.
Just don't do something stupid like mixing terms that make no sense.
I was reading Stephen King's misery once. I really liked it, but only one thing really bugged me. At one point, the woman who is holding the main character captive is described as getting out a rifle. Then a little bit later, the rifle is mentioned again.
Okay, all well and good.
However, the next two times the gun is mentioned, it is described as a shotgun. It just really bugged me. Is Stephen King not aware of the difference between the two (in which case, a dictionary will clear everything up quickly) or just editing mistakes?
Sorry for the rant.
John Carter of Mars
06-22-2002, 11:23 PM
Another vote for the Remington Model 700 bolt action, for the reasons already mentioned. Chambered for the .30-'06, it's a common deer hunter's rifle that can be purchased in any Wal-Mart.
bf's suggestion of a Winchester Model 70 gets the same result.
06-23-2002, 02:55 PM
For something a little more unusual, a Remington 760 slide ("pump") action rifle. Chambered for .30-'06, it's a serious game-getting rifle. It's slide action actually has a faster lock-time than a bolt action in the hands of an experienced shooter, while still allowing the hunter to keep his sights alligned with the target. The newer version of this is the Remington 7600 (http://www.remington.com/NR/exeres/0000038dpijyghinqjqeqnnm/Product+Category.asp?NRMODE=Published&NRORIGINALURL=%2ffirearms%2fcenterfire%2fcenterfire%2ehtm&NRNODEGUID=%7bD310D6C8-44C2-4313-B7C0-E986581ABE3E%7d&NRQUERYTERMINATOR=1&cookie%5Ftest=1). If you must have a bolt gun, a Remington 740/7400 is a good choice. For a semi-auto, a DCM-purchased M-1 Garand is good old ol' rifle.
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