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I have never shot a deer, but I am determined to do it eventually. I finally picked up a dedicated deer gun: a Tikka T3x in 6.5 Creedmoor.

The other day, I saw Paul Harrell talking about deer guns, and he seemed to feel it was a good idea to have a lever action with iron sights for short-range deer hunting. Is it really a big disadvantage to have a scoped bolt gun when you're close to a deer? My scope will go down to 2.5, but that's the bottom.

It would be just terrible if I had to buy another gun. 馃檮

It looks like a lot of people use the .45-70 for this kind of thing.
 
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Not sure what you are asking. If you are asking if your gun is good for deer. Then yes.
If you are asking is it ok to use a scope to hunt deer then Yes.
ALL of my hunting guns have scopes on them.
Iron sights are better to shoot at running deer BUT YOU SHOULD NOT BE SHOOTING AT A RUNNING DEER. Unless you want to gut shoot it or just wound it.
If this will be your first time hunting deer then use what you have and remember.
SHOT PLACEMENT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING.
 

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My favorite deer rifle was a marlin 30-30 lever with iron sights. I hope to run across one at a decent price.

Growing up most of my friends also used a 30-30 lever with sights iron and we hunted in wooded areas. But now they use different calibers (mainly 270) and scoped bolt action rifles. But I just use a 20 gauge with just the bead sight; my shots are within 50 yards.
So no you don鈥檛 need to buy another rifle. But I suggest you take your rifle out and see how it shoots at 25 and fifty yards.
But I still like iron sights on a rifle.
 

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It depends a lot on where you are as to what type of gun you鈥檒l like hunting deer. Around where I live, there鈥檚 a lot of thick brush and trees where visibility is usually less than 50 yards. In cases like that, a big fat slow moving bullet from open sights has its advantages. If you are in open territory where shots are going to be at longer distances, a scoped bolt action definitely has advantages. If you鈥檙e in between, its up to you.
 

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I have a Winchester 30-30 but have never taken it hunting. The last deer I killed was shot with an opened sighted single shot 45/70, a H&R Handi-rifle. It was trotting when I shot it and it was a heart shot! It was dead when hit and only took one more "step".

EDIT: Oh yeah, it was about 20 yards from me.
 

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You specified a lever gun and deer hunting. There was also a mention of scoped rifles. I'm too old to hunt anymore, but here's my two little pennies on what you are asking:

First off - caliber. A .45-70 is a fantastic caliber, but heavy for deer. If you are going after bear - it would be a great choice. It is too much for a deer at close range. A .30-30 (or similar) is a far better choice.

Second are the sights. A scope is great for precise long range shooting. A lever rifle is not a long range weapon. It is meant to be quick handling at close to medium ranges, so a scope isn't practical IMHO. Iron sights are best, and the old 'buck horn' are tops over a peep sights for quick sighting. I love peep sights on most of my rifles (M1As, M-1 Garands, Carbines, etc.) - but with the exception of the M1 Carbine - those are long range precision shooters.

To your question, I suggest either a Marlin or a Winchester lever action in .30-30. I love my Marlin 336, but I hated the pistol grip (so I modified it to a straight lever). To me, the pistol grip slowed my shooting time when reloading for a second shot. I also prefer the look and feel of the straight lever vs. a pistol grip/curved lever.

When you speak of the 6.5 Creedmore in the same breath as a lever action rifle/carbine you are talking different worlds. The 6.5 is outstanding in it's own right - it isn't a fast handling short range weapon. Everything depends on where you plan to hunt. Here in Colorado shooting is mostly longer ranges, and hunters with iron sighted lever guns are a tad out classed by the longer range calibers in bolt and semi auto rifles with scopes. By the same token, a hunter in thick brush or forest may feel like he is carrying a telephone pole with a longer barreled scoped rifle.
 

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Your Tikka will be fine. I will admit that I have almost lost close deer because of the scope. It took me a minute to acquire it in the glass.
I do have a Marlin 336 in 30-30 with a scope, but it also has see through mounts and iron sight.
 

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I have used iron sights when I was much younger , back in Wisconsin. In Wyoming you will find darned few rifles without scopes. As I (and my eyes) aged I went to scopes and found that for me a good 1x4 or 1x6 to be about perfect. I have threaded a bullet through a hole in the brush many a time that couldn't be seen without a scope.
 

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I do like my Browning Lever Rifle in .243. I can only use my guns over here for target shooting. If I got on a deer stalking group I would use it for hunting. Light, easily maneuverable.

But if this is your first hunting session, take the gun you are familiar with, instead of trying to get broke in on hunting and a new (to you) gun at the same time. Keep the variables to a minimum. Get the lever action gun and get to know it during this next year then take it hunting.
 

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I've seen the size of the "deer" in Florida. You could use a .22lr. 馃榿
But seriously Goofy is giving excellent advice.
Also you NEED a lever gun. I recommend one in a large caliber that fires a flat nosed bullet, unless you really enjoy following a blood trail.
 

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A lever rifle is like a 1911, everyone should own one. Scopes do not belong on a lever rifle in my opinion. A good, old Lyman or Redfield aperture sight or Marbles or Lyman tang sight with a dull, gold bead is appropriate. I've killed a lot more deer, hogs, coyotes and everything else with rifles equipped with open and iron sights than I have with rifles equipped with scopes....from Virginia to Wyoming. But I prefer a good set of aperture sights to a scope and shoot them and open sights A LOT. I have to, I no longer own a scoped rifle.

I have no idea who Paul Harrel is.
 
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