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A Few More End-Of-Days Arming Options

In part one we took a look at the breakdown/takedown options, but there is more to the game than just the semi-auto “short stuff” players we already explored.  We now welcome to the arena the bolt actions with a tactical edge and those that seek to maintain the sleek classic lines from yesteryear’s famous rifles.

The Savage 64

The Savage 64 is obviously not a bolt action, tactical or otherwise; it’s also a semi auto, but it gets honorable mention prior to listing the other excellent offering from Savage (below).

The point here is that they have elevated the game for all makers by producing guns that are at par or are better appointed than other major manufacturers at a significantly lower price point.  So either way you look at it, the Savages will deliver on your expectations, and usually will drastically exceed them.

What you get is an incredibly tough, inexpensive semi-auto, capable of killing things.  It starts at around $165 and goes up to about $315, depending on the configuration. Many of the variants get tactical, with options like picatinny rails and threaded muzzles, but without question, it’s one of the more customizable guns from factory.  Wood, polymer, stainless steel, blued, threaded muzzle, different sized magazines and tactical appointments: it’s all up to you. On top of that, the rifle weighs in at around 6.5 pounds, making it one of the more substantial .22 rifles on the market in its niche.

Savage Mark II FVSR

This gun gets special mention as one of the coolest guns to hit the .22LR arena in a long time. It’s built with the user in mind and has a mind for being an overachiever.

It’s a bolt-action rifle, shoots simple and reliable magazines (five shots), and drives tacks—in other words, it’s ridiculously accurate). It’s cheap (under $250), durable, has an adjustable trigger and a threaded barrel end for accepting a suppressor, and it’s lightweight at around five pounds or so.

You won’t have to worry too much about having replacement parts on hand, except maybe the normal firing pin, a couple springs, and an extractor, because as a bolt action, it isn’t as subject to failure as some other designs.

It does everything that the Ruger 10-22 does, except it’s not semi-auto (sometimes desirable) and the magazines aren’t quite as nice as the rotary mags from Ruger.

If you might want the option of putting a “can” on the end of your rifle, this is the one, because the bolt action allows you to feed the subsonic quiet ammunition reliably, and the durability and feel is excellent.

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Remington 597

What list would be complete without a Remington rifle on it?  Certainly not this one.

What makes this gun so special, aside from the obvious reputation it enjoys?  It all comes down to the clean lines, smooth functionality, and the history of excellent service without breakage.  Oh yeah, and it’s very accurate, smooth pointing, and reliable to boot. It’s about $250, well within the range of an “inexpensive” rifle, and yet it still delivers more than its value.  It’s not as pretty as the original blue and wood guns Remington was making in the 1960s and 1970s, but it has its own unique and lovely looks on its own.  Besides that, there is something to be said for beauty by virtue of reliability when it comes to guns.  The Remington has everything a beginner’s guns should have, with nothing extraneous.  It’s purely about functionality with the 597, and it delivers impressive marks in all categories.

Marlin Model 60

Another honorable mention, the Marlin Model 60 is the original 22LR rifle.  If there is a gun more well-known than the Ruger 10-22 and Remington 597, then it surely must be the Marlin Model 60.  It was the original high capacity (eighteen rounds), original target model fun gun, original reliability champion; it’s perhaps the one .22 that started it all, depending on who you ask.  12 million Marlin 60 owners cannot be wrong, surely.  It has simple clean lines with an under barrel, tubular magazine that helps to mitigate potential feeding concerns or lost magazine issues. There have been Marlins which have fired with thousands of rounds gone through them with an almost disregard to the fouling and debris that is commonly an issue in small-caliber firearms. If there is a more dirt/grime-tolerant firearm on the planet, it would be surprising, as this Marlin 60 has a history of going months without cleaning and still being capable of dispatching an animal or two.

Ready for the dealmaker?  The gun can often be found for $130 on special, and it has a “normal” price range of under $175 or so.  That’s impressive considering the reputation that the Marlin Model 60 enjoys in the eyes of so many.

So what’s the conclusion about rifles that are ready for the end of days?

Firstly, no one will ever agree with a single platform from which to stage a resistance/survival attempt/attack, but given all the various needs arising in an apocalyptic scenario, there are few if any platforms, calibers, or styles more adept at handling themselves than the venerable .22LR. Surely, many of the readers of this article will immediately disagree in favor of a 9 mm Glock, a 308 M1 Garand, a 5.56 AR variant, or a 12-gauge shotgun (or others), but long after I have spent the stockpile of 12 gauge, .223, or .308, I may still be able to stay alive because I spent $500 on .22LR ammunition and another $250 on a good trusty rifle.  It’s not what you ask it to do that counts; it’s how well it performs when you ask it to.  Sure, I can kill people or large game more easily with a .308 that has a $5,000 scope on it, but how many of those would I theoretically need to focus on?  If I had my choice in a situation that threatens my legacy, my family, or my own life, I prefer to have more.  More is better when more is a .22LR, and not something less versatile.   If anything, at least regard the humble .22LR as a perfect beginning point in your preparation for an end-of-days scenario; millions like you already do.

©2012 Off the Grid News

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  1. An M1 Garand uses the 30.06 round, not the .308. M1 Garands and 30.06 ammunition are available through the Civilian Marksmanship Program if you qualify. They are not cheap nor light, but are amazingly powerful, accurate, reliable and effective. Info at

    • M1 Garands can be found or re-barreled into 308’s, You may need to find modified enblock clips for it. The US Navy used them for Basics during the Vietnam war. Canada also had many from the US. Last item on M1’s, Use only the 150 grain bullets, and only the proper load of powder or you will break the weapon. It was not designed for modern ammo/powder, nor built for it. Recoil problems and broken recievers will happen. Lay on a good supply of ammo or get the proper reloading data.

      Watch your six and trust in God.

  2. Ijust received a notice (unverified) that The Freedom Group owned by Cerberus Capital Management which is controlled by George Soros now owns Bushmaster,Remington,Marlin,DPMS Dakota Arms and H&R. So, availability of those brands and parts may be questionable in the future. Perhaps that is why my brand new Marlin 795 constantly jams and mis-fires.

    • has stated this rumor is false. It has several noted gun users/hunters on it’s board of directors. Being owned my George Soros is a myth and needs to be squelched. I believe the rumor started when the Cerberus Capital Management was an unknown so everyone jumped to a false conclusion. Not that I blame them; if I saw someone buying up weapons manufacturers, I believe I would’ve made the same conclusion. It sounds like something Soros would do.

  3. Wal-Mart sells (when in stock) a Remington 597 with a basic scope for under $200. I bought one and after I sighted it in found that filling the bull’s eye was not very difficult.

  4. I found, used, a Browning Medallion with a semi-octagonal barrel in .30-06. Now, I also have two Mausers (Mitchell’s using wartime German and postwar Yugoslav parts), as well as a collectable Enfield, but the Browning is my favorite. Although it only carries four shells in the trapdoor magazine, it is accurate, rugged, and LOOKS COOL!

  5. I agree that a .22 caliber rifle should be included in everyones end of the world arsenal. It fills a niche, just like the other weapons you mentioned do. That being said there is NO one weapon that will do it all. Better to have a nice rounded out collection, than to put your life on the line with one weapon. Besides, what would you do if it broke? Having multiple choices gives you peace of mind and extra weapons to hand out to your friends and family to help hold down the fort….

    • Must have 22s–cheap ammo cost for practice and sustained field of fire-agreed. If budget demands no more than two or three other calibers or types(shotguns–think maybe aa .410 shotgun paired with ajudge revolver), what should those other arms be considering firepower, common ammo, reliability, and repairability?

  6. Just can’t beat the ‘ol .22’s and I advise anyone looking for only one gun of that fact. Good of you to present an array of calibers to folks Ben, I think it helps eliminate a lot of guesswork for many. I do like my 30-06’s and will take on any job with them, but can’t take anything away from a .223/5.56. Of course, a 12 gauge in any style is a fine partner to any rifle or handgun. My real favorite is a .470 NE double rifle, but the cost of ammo and my ‘ol shoulder regulate it to ‘special use’ .

  7. Mine is a fifty year old mod 60 with a tasco pro point II, 4 min dot, at 60yrds, head shots to squirls is tha norm, 500 rounds in two pockets, just think how easy a man size target will weather….every hole bleeds

  8. a 22 lr is great and mostly pretty accurate , and they split the air just fine , plus they are fairly quiet in small areas , added to a old 12 ithca pump and feel safe

  9. I am no expert but building a home arsenal to me depends on different scenarios. How much money you have and are ya gonna be shootin up close or at a distance. A good pistol (any caliber), a shotgun (ga of your choice) and a rifle (223 on up) with a reasonably priced scope will give you the options you might need. Brand is your choice but a bolt is the more reliable and less expensive type. Store about 2,000 rounds for each weapon and keep them in a dry place with some dessicant. You can count on zero ammo resupply so 2000 should be your minimum goal. I don’t think keeping them all in one spot is too good an idea if you can find suitable locations where you have access. If you have the money, buy fancier stuff or bigger caliber to suit your desires. In my book, a dead person never asked what caliber or brand shot em.

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