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Howdy y'all! I have been enjoying all the threads on here, and it caused me to think about the first centerfire rifle I had. It was a Marlin 336 carbine in .30-30, I got it about 1962 or so. My dad brought it and another rifle home wrapped in brown paper, then he laid them on the living room floor, and told me to upwrap them. I had a hunch what was in those long packages, but I was thrilled that one of them might be mine. :D I got the paper off, and discovered one rifle was a Husqvarna bolt action in .30-06, and the other one was the aforementioned Marlin carbine. My dad then told me to choose which one I wanted for my rifle. What a choice! I waffled back and forth for quite a while, then I decided he would probably want me to chose the Marlin, so I did.
Soon I was bugging to go shoot my new rifle, but my dad said I would have to learn gun safety, and reloading, because he couldn't afford to buy ammunition all the time. He provided me with a pound of IMR-3031, a box of Hornady 150 grain flat points, and 100 primers. He told me to pick up brass at the range to start with, so I went with him without my rifle for a few trips, and all I did was scrounge brass off the ground :) . One of the shooters there knew my dad, and he asked why I was picking up .30-30 brass. I explained that I had a new rifle, and I was trying to gather enough brass to begin reloading for it. He told me to stop, he had plenty of brass, and he said it was mine, all I had to do was go to his home and pick it up! :eek: I won't forget that man, or his kindness to a kid. I will cheerfully do the same for a kid who is willing to try to learn this hobby and sport. I believe that's the way it should be.
After I had learned the gun safety, and reloaded every piece of brass I owned, I finally got my chance to shoot that shiny new carbine. I thought it kicked a bit hard at first, but I soon got used to it. The best groups I could get were about four inches at 100 yards. That wasn't the gun's fault, I was just green at shooting a "big" rifle. I eventually learned about breath control, trigger squeeze, and concentration; then things began to improve.
Eventually, I bagged deer, and antelope with that carbine until I decided it was not powerful enough, :oops: (I had no reason for this, other than my kid friends all said they were hunting with eight millimeters, ought sixes, or some such).
Over the years, I have owned centerfire rifles and carbines of many different makes, but now I have "returned to the fold" and I own lever action rifles once again. They will serve me very well until I go to the Happy Hunting Grounds.
Thanks for your time, I got a bit windier than I expected.
 

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Great story Andy! I'm sure many young folks have moved on from their trusty .30-30 for the same reason! I know I did, as did my nephew. He's still too young to realise his mistake, but I also have gone back to the old lever guns for a more enjoyable hunt!
 
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