Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Weapons Wednesday - The Rifleman's Rifle

In the fall of 2015, Jackie and I moved into together. A small little rambling turn of the century house on the edge of a small town. It was one of those I woke up one morning, thinking about what kinda of flooring I would re do the kitchen with and suddenly realized: "Oh, I have a house. That isn't owned by the Fraternity, Army, or Boy Scouts." I'm an adult. I love this woman. And the woman I loved put forth an ultimatum. No more guns until I proposed. So I furiously started saving money. I had a .50 caliber ammo can labeled turkey loads. I put all my turkey loads in a cooler and hid money in said ammo can. Genius plan. We'll circle back to that.

Sometime around the fall of 1923, the fine folks at Winchester began experimenting with 6.8mm bullet in a necked down .30 Government Model of 1906 casing. The .270 Winchester was unveiled in 1925. And Jack O'Connor, the dean of the American gun writers, became a huge proponent. Jack O'Connor favored the Model 70, praising it as the Rifleman's Rifle. And the .270 went on to become one the nation's most popular sporting cartridges.

So, flash forward to April of 2016. Having secured enough funds in the turkey ammo can, I ventured up to Atlanta. First stopping to have lunch with MrGarabaldi and OldNFO. If I recall correctly, OldNFO took pity on me and sprang for lunch. I met up with one of Jackie's friends (Thanks Jess!) and purchased the ring, using the stone out of Mother's engagement ring. And that evening she said yes,

And that brings us to how the Rifleman's Rifle became my engagement gun.

Walnut and blued, of course

Jackie bought me a FN made Winchester Model 70 Sporter in Mr. Jack's beloved .270 Winchester. Topped with a Leupold 3x9x40, it is an exquisite rifle.

.270 loads are generally 130 or 150 grn, in several different bullet loads. And Sierra is now producing a MatchKing bullet for it as well. The 130 grn load is good for most anything in North America, with the 150 grn being acceptable for moose.

Winchester is now a brand wholly owned by FN, with guns produced in Belgium, Portugal, and Japan. My Model 70 is made in Portugal and assembled in the South Carolina FN plant. A very close copy of the vaunted Pre-64 Winchester.

The gun looks good and shoots great. While only a light weight sporter, it shoots far better than it's pencil thin barrel would lead you to believe. And it looks really good in the case next to the 7mm Rem Mag Hawkeye, a hold over from my days when I though bigger was better.

The two don't quite know what to think of one another

And as a plus, my now wife bought it for me. The Rifleman's Rifle is a great gun. From a great lady.


  1. Hey Mack;

    I still have the pic from that meeting. "Hate" chicken at the original location is the best. I know that the 270 is a good round and very popular with the bambi slayers, LOL You do have a very understanding Spousal Unit.

  2. Double congratulations on your good fortune!
    --Tennessee Budd

  3. Looks like you scored twice. Nice rifle and fantastic wife.


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