It Is Time To Put The Old Girl Down

November 21, 2017
2 mins read

Today, there is a good chance I am gonna hurt your feelings.  I’m gonna tell you something that most folks are just too nice to say.  See, familiarity is something that’s very comforting to us, and comfort breeds confidence, which often breeds success.  At some point though, you’re clinging simply to that comfort.  You get lazy.  You get stuck in a rut, and before you know it, you’ve missed the present, and the future is about to hit you with a hay-maker.
But it’s time we faced reality, people.  It’s time to put your .30-30 away.  Its time to put your .303 Enfield away…  and yes…  it’s time to put your .30-06 away.
These are outdated curiosities.  They are not proper modern hunting cartridges.  There is literally nothing the .30-06 does that a 7mm mag doesn’t do significantly better.
I’m not saying you should throw out your old guns.  I’m not saying you should throw out your newer guns that are chambered in these.  I’m saying you shouldn’t be buying additional weapons in these, when there are better options available.
Compare a 7mm mag to a .30-06.  Velocity wise you’re looking at 200fps difference for common North American game sized bullets, at least in factory loads.  And the 300 win mag?  Well, it’s not even close.  I mean it’s a whole different sport practically.  A .30-06 is pushing a 150 grain bullet around at about 2900 fps.  A 7mm mag pushes that same bullet about 3100 fps.   A 300 win mag throws a 165 grain bullet out at over 3200 fps.
Oh, but it isn’t fair, says you!   Those are magnums!
So what?  The .30-06 is a long action round.  It’s practically the same size, in terms of length, as the 300 win mag.  Sit them side by side, and you would think they are extremely similar.  But they aren’t.  Because one was designed in 1906, and the other was designed in 1963.
But that isn’t even the most damning comparison.  No, the absolute proof that the .30-06 is obsolete is the .308.
.30-06 performance out of a short action?
Why would you bother with a long action throw?  Why does the .30-06 do so little, with so much case capacity?
Well, because it was designed in 1906.  That’s why.
Now, I know you’re going to be upset, and you’re going to come up with all kinds of reasons why your beloved .30-06 is still just as good as it ever was.  Hey the .30-30 killed dear for over 100 years!  And I know, I know… most shots are taken from under 200 yards right?  It’s ok.  Let it out.
Tell ya what: Keep your .30-06 and enjoy shooting it.
Just don’t buy more.
They don’t have .30-06 in cowboy action shooting.  So I suppose you’ll have to come up with some other excuse to live in the past.


  1. Philippine insurrection, boxer rebellion, 1916 Pancho villa expedition, ww1, allied intervention in Russian civil war, banana wars, wwii, Greek civil war, Korean War, Vietnam, and years of cmp matches and hunting. I think you can stick your article up your ass. New cartridges are great but with the .300 win mag you will create problems that the army has encountered when they went to the m1 .30-06 to the m2 .30-06 and recently the m855 to the m855a1 the bullets go a hell of a lot longer than the range is made for over penetration is not a good thing when hunting in smaller ranges if you live out west then yeah but they have long ago switched to the magnums .30-06 fills the role it was intended and is only improving with custom loads

  2. These “Old Girl(s)” are the tools I have. I have learned every aspect of what each will do when cold, to hot, in a quartering wind… dirty, really dirty and clean… with surplus and factory foods. I know what I can do with the tools I have. These old tools of mine have no memories of my faults or talents. Should someones liquid assets, ego, hormone levels … or Pew Pew fan club membership motivate them toward the latest in portable artillery…. I do hope they go for it. It couldn’t hurt to spur on the economy ever so little more could it now. Now as for me…I do accept that I may have a case or two of .o6 or 303 older than you,…but do allow those who can ring the gong with the relics to take your opinion for what it is… simply yours. All the best…. TTT

      • You can usually bank on it that Lector likes to stir things up and get people fired up a bit. It is his nature. He is even more so in person, to be honest.
        Though, I do think he does believe the basic message – no need to get rid of your firearms, but rather than buying new ones in those calibers, make new purchases to the more modern variety.

        • Sir: Would a 243 fall into that category? I am an urban dweller and find ranges beyond 400 yards are only straight up one end of the street… or the other.

  3. “There ain’t nuthin’ that a man can’t fix with seven hundred dollars and a thutty ought six.”
    -author unknown
    Remember the ammo shortages of the recent past? One of the few calibers left on the shelf was 30-‘06.
    So, yeah, disagreement here, but Thanksgiving blessings to all!

  4. Now, if I hunted in the Far West Lector’s comments would be well worth heeding, but for taking a deer at moderate ranges a 30-06 will do nicely. Also, a 30-30 is perfectly fine for the brush and mixed country, where short range shots are the norm. I betcha Lector lives in some place like Montana, where super-long range shots are very common.

  5. Lemme see…. .30-06 Springfield… bullets and load data from 110 gr to 240 grain, with powder and pills that are readily available. Reasonable recoil. High tolerance for temperature extremes. Wide array of fairly-priced brass. Not particularly finicky to reload. Mil-surp, some even with AP and tracers loaded, can be found. My brothers and I have taken everything from grouse to moose and brown bear with it. The recoil on the 7mm Mag is very unpleasant for many people – sharp, hard, and loud.
    I think the .30-06 will still be in use in another century, even if there are newer cartridges that are “better” for any given application.
    I’ve bought and played with a number of arms, and I’ve still taken more deer with the ’06 than any other. The 6.5mm Swede is a sweet shooter, too… but it’s even older. 🙂
    Guns are like happy meal toys – collect the whole set!

  6. Online cartridge wars are frequent and unproductive. I will concede that in advance of a SHTF situation, keeping weapons in widely available calibers makes rxcellent sense, so useful ammunition can be obtained in several ways. I am thinking of 7.62×51, 5.56×45, 7.62×39, 9mm Luger. If you reload, some of the other calibers become attractive, assuming you are able to effectively shoot weapons so chambered. The advantage of allegedly obsolete calibers is having weapons so chambered does not raise “red flags” – grandad’s deer rifle, and all that.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Support Men Of The West

Previous Story

Video: Gun Cleaning 101

Next Story

Video: Jack Hinson, Legendary Civil War Sniper

Latest from Firearms

Ukraine, NATO, and the End of the Postwar Order

Russia is massing troops on the Ukrainian border. America is threatening sanctions or worse. Britain warns of war, while Germany wants peace. Is the post-WWII geopolitical order crumbling? Will Russia always be

The Commies Are Coming

The Commiecrats in congress have shifted their focus to gun grabbing. As they are writing their bill, and just a few days after a Colorado judge shot down a case that would
Go toTop