Remington's Model Seven in 7mm-08 - a real undiscovered "sleeper." (column)
The .270 Winchester surely had its heyday, while for generations the historic .30-06 has been a tradition in big-game hunting circles around the world--and today, from this corner, we have one of the truly undiscovered "sleepers" amid the hunting/shooting fraternity. That's the 7mm-08 caliber as currently manufactured for Remington Arms Company's Model Seven bolt-action rifle, offering a combination in rifle and caliber that is destined to gain wide acceptance as a fast-handling, rapid-pointing and most portable big-game hunting arm.
To be quite honest, the great majority of sportsmen just haven't had the opportunity to scrutinize this particular arm or use it afield and the blame rests primarily with the sporting goods retailer who has never revealed its true merits to the American sporting public.
Now don't get me wrong. I'm well aware that every retailer has more than enough problems to contend with on a daily basis than merely thinking about a particular model of firearm or caliber. There are daily stock control problems, mark-downs, damaged returns and special promotions as well as general day-in and day-out business routines. Nevertheless, I strongly recommend you take a closer look at the Remington Model Seven chambered for the 7mm-08.
To be sure the 7mm-08 is not for the largest of North American big-game such as grizzly bear or moose. Yet for medium-sized big-game animals such as whitetailed deer, mule deer, black bear and pronghorn antelope, the 7mm-08 is ballistically an outstanding caliber.
Actually, the 7mm-08 boasts comparable ballistics to the popular .308 Winchester, sporting a muzzle velocity of 2,860 fps with Remington's 140-grain pointed soft point bullet, and a muzzle energy of 2,542 ft/lbs. And at 200 yards its retained velocity is still pushing 2,402 fps and its retained energy, 1,793 ft/lbs.
Equally appealing about the 7mm-08 is that it also boasts a relatively flat trajectory, comparable to the ever-popular 130-grain .270 Winchester cartridge which has been used through the years with outstanding success for long-range shooting at plains games.
Actually, the 7mm-08, when sighted-in to strike point-of-aim at 150 yards (140-grain PSP) has a bullet drop of just 2.3 inches at 200 yards and prints just 0.9 inches high at mid-range. Now the .270 Winchester (130-grain PSP), on the other hand, prints a mid-range trajectory of 0.8 inches high when sighted-in at 150 yards and 2.0 inches low at 200 yards. And the popular .308 Winchester has an even more dramatic trajectory curve.
What I'm saying is that the 7mm-08 is a real sleeper as far as the hunting field is concerned. It is a grand cartridge which packs more than sufficient wallop to efficiently down all medium-sized big-game animals found in North America and elsewhere, and equally appealing, it is less expensive to shoot (ammo-wise) as compared to such popular big-game cartridges as the .30-06.
And Remington's Model Seven is truly made to suit this fine cartridge. Actually, Remington introduced its Model Seven featherweight bolt-action rifle to the sporting public back in 1983. That year I had the privilege of using this particular arm and caliber (7mm-08) during a trek with Remington personnel to Alberta, Canada, where I hunted mule deer -- again, the combination proved to be a winner. Yet for reasons still unexplained the Model Seven and the 7mm-08 caliber has never gained its just publicity. Nevertheless, it is a fine combination and a combination which should be recommended wherever big-game hunting for deer, etc. is popular.
The Model Seven makes a perfect rifle for the field, especially when one has to carry a sporting arm over many miles of rugged terrain. The featherweight Model Seven weighs but 6-1/4 pounds and when a scope is added its weight is not more than 7-1/2 pounds.
Its barrel length is just 18-1/2 inches and its magazine capacity is three rounds (plus one in the chamber) in caliber 7mm-08. However, the Model Seven is also available in such other popular calibers as .243 Winchester, 6mm Remington and .308 Winchester plus the .223 Remington. But again, as far as we're concerned, the truly winning combination is the Model Seven chambered for the 7mm-08 round. Another most important point. Stocked with its "FS" or its synthetic stock reinforced with DuPont "Kevlar" its overall weight pushes the scales to a mere 5-1/2 pounds!
The lightweight Model Seven is also manufactured featuring all quality standards as is commonplace with Remington's highly popular model 700s, while its relatively short barrel is free-floating to a single pressure point at its forend tip. Its steel is of ordnance quality -- from its enclosed bolt and extractor to its trigger guard and floor plate.
From the factory the Remington Model Seven is fitted with a ramp front sight and a fully adjustable rear sight plus sling swivel studs. Again, its stock is available in either wood or Kevlar (gray and classic style Kevlar, that is) which is practically indestructible and most ideal for those sportsmen who habitually trek country wherein damage could result to a conventional wood stock.
Personally, I'm not partial to such Kevlar stocks only because they lack the aesthetic beauty of those created in wood. But again, for the sportsman who travels into territories where damage could conceivably result to a rifle and wherein extreme lightweight is an essential factor, than the Kevlar-version of this model is the answer.
History Of The Model Seven
But let's talk a bit more about the interesting history of this fascinating hunting arm. To reiterate, it was initially introduced by Remington back in 1983 and at that time it was chambered for the .222 Remington, .243 Winchester, 6mm Remington, 7mm-08 and .308 Winchester calibers.
In 1984, the .223 Remington was added to the Model Seven chamberings. However, in 1984 the .222 Remington was deleted from its lineup, while in 1987 the Model Seven "FS" was introduced -- the "FS" as mentioned, infers that it is fitted with a synthetic fiberglass stock reinforced with DuPont Kevlar fibers and again chambered for the .243 Winchester, 7mm-08 and .308 Winchester. At that point in time too, the Model Seven Custom was also created -- again with synthetic stock of Kevlar and chambered for the .35 Remington and .350 Remington Magnum calibers.
"Aside from such pertinent features as action type, caliber, stock design, weight and others, there are two aspects of an ideal rifle which cannot vary," said a Remington official. "It must be well designed and must be well made. Remington centerfire rifles of various types have long met these two primary requirements as attested to by serious, discriminating shooters across the world and by millions of rank-and-file shooters.
"But in 1983 we introduced a new centerfire rifle, a lightweight bolt-action sporter named the Model Seven. We believe this rifle offers an excellent combination of design and performance features that makes it the ideal rifle for a large number of sportsmen," the official added.
"In the shooter's hands the Model Seven with its 18-1/2-inch barrel and weight of not more than 6-1/4 pounds makes it feel good, well-balanced, light and quick to point -- almost like an upland shotgun," the official continued. "In addition, its profile and looks are outstanding, slim and stylish."
Remington officials went on to say that the action of the Model Seven is not merely a scaled-down version of its equally popular Model 700 bolt-action centerfire arm. "The action of the Model Seven is a whole new Remington design," the official explained, adding that one immediately notices the feature in the cover piece extending from the receiver over the forward part of the bolt. "By surrounding the front end of the bolt with a more complete circle of metal, it serves as a bolt guide and aids in producing smoother, more positive bolt travel," he said.
Remington officials are quick to add that the Model Seven actually fills an empty slot throughout the world market for a truly lightweight, fast-handling and highly portable hunting rifle. "With its introduction a growing legion of sportsmen continue to discover the legitimate role of a lightweight yet accurate rifle," the official interjected.
So, there is indeed a definite need for a lightweight hunting arm with its Kevlar stock, especially for that segment of the sport hunting fraternity seeking a practically indestructible gunstock for a hunting arm.
Also, Remington's Custom Shop version of the Model Seven with its Kevlar stock has an additional place in the hunting fields. Remember, this version of the Model Seven is chambered for the .35 Remington and .350 Remington Magnum. Also keep in mind the .350 Remington Magnum is one of the few belted magnum cartridges ever designed for use in a short-action rifle as the Model Seven.
The hefty .350 Remington magnum is indeed a favored caliber for the largest of North American big-game and is an equally favored caliber for veteran guides and outfitters in the far west and Alaska as an "insurance" arm, while chambered for the brush-cutting .35 Remington it makes a superb short-range densewoods big-game hunting rifle.
The Remington Model Seven in its carefully-selected calibers and especially the 7mm-08 never really gained popularity following its initial introduction and I can guess that it never gained the notoriety it justly deserves only because it wasn't promoted as it should have been. There is no question the Model Seven is an outstanding lightweight and most practical hunting rifle for all medium-size big-game in the west as well as amid the timbered stands of New England and Canada. It is an equally fine arm for hunting the swampland of the deep south -- and I guarantee as more sport hunters turn to this arm that this Model Seven in 7mm-08 caliber will gain the reputation it truly deserves. It is the answer for those sportsmen seeking an accurate, rugged and lightweight sporting rifle with sufficient knock-down power for all medium-sized big-game.
PHOTO : Remington's Model Seven Bolt-Action Centerfire Rifle
PHOTO : The Remington Model Seven Custom "KS" Lightweight Centerfire Rifle is available in .35
PHOTO : Remington and .350 Remington Magnum.
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|Date:||Mar 1, 1989|
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