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Hello! First off let me say I am not a firearm expert by any means. I have been slowly getting into it as a hobby and because I want to protect myself and my family.

I am considering purchasing either a Springfield scout/socom16 or a Ruger scout. I want something in .308 win/ 7.62 as I already have a custom built Ar in 556 that my police officer friend helped me put together.

What I want to know is does anyone have experience with either brands scout rifles or does anyone have a better option that maybe I should consider? Any good suggestions information would be helpful in that decision making process. I watched some videos on YouTube but still think I need some advice
 

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I strongly urge you to avoid any .308 rifle with an under 18” barrel. It will be an earsplitting unpleasant experience.

“Scout rifle” has come to be a fairly broad rubric but was originally a very specific design specified by Jeff Cooper and a study group that further developed the concept. If you want one very close to that design, the Ruger Gunsite Scout is pretty close (just a bit heavier I believe). The Steyr Scout is, I believe, built exactly to spec but is pretty pricey as I recall.

If it’s a handy .308 rifle in general that you are after, hard to beat the Ruger American Ranch rifle in .308. Conventionally scoped, it’s not a Scout rifle but is handy, robust, and economical. I have no experience myself with the Mossberg MVP series (they also do a “Scout” - but that 16” barrel - ouch!) but the Thunder Ranch 20” .308 looks quite handy and is priced right. Finally, while never a contender in the looks department, it has become almost impossible to find any other criticism of Savage. They do a 20” “Scout” in .308 ( and in .450 BM, which is interesting but much less versatile) that will undoubtedly be good value for money.

If you are unfamiliar with the forward scope mount of a Scout rifle, it would be great if you could handle one before buying. I am not a fan, for example.

Good luck.
 

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Ancient Gaseous Emanation
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Steyr Scout Rifle


Springfield M1A Scout Squad Rifle 16" barrel


Springfield M1A Bush Rifle 18" barrel

Steyr is the only real 'Scout Rifle' as per Col. Cooper (the inventor)

I owned a Springfield Scout Squad Rifle and still own a Springfield Bush Rifle. Muzzle blast (noise) never bothered me when shooting the 16" rifle. It bothered me when someone else was shooting it. I got rid og the Scout Squad because it was a butt heavy gun. It just didn't feel right. The 18" Bush rifle is a much better fit for me.

I have no first hand experience with Ruger's offerings.

Personally, I have absolutely no use for a home defense rifle, especially one chambered in .308 Win. A shotgun is a much better option.
 

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The Springfield SOCOM 16 is another version of the M1a. It sports a 16.5” barrel with a muzzle brake. It is quite unnecessarily loud. Never bothered me (I use ear protection), but seems to seriously bother folks who don’t think ear protection is a good idea on a shooting range. It would be devastating to your hearing fired indoors, and would be a nasty cartridge fired in home defense; the .308 is going to penetrate a lot. Popeye’s suggestion of a shotgun is quite viable for home defense. I own a few .308 firearms, and would not prefer to employ any of them in home defense situations.
 

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The October 2019 issue of GUNS magazine contains an article from Dave Anderson, "The Scout Rifle - Cooper's Time-proven Concept". Anderson lists rifle makers from Marlin, Mossberg, Ruger Savage, Springfield Armory and Tikka as having products containing many of Coopers Scout design concepts. Additionally, he mentions that he discovered many of these manufacturers "youth rifles" will readily fit the bill for a Scout type rifle as their dimensions are similar to the Cooper/Steyr "concept".

Also of note is Anderson's observation that the .308 is not a mild, moderate round. He lists .243, 260, 7mm-08, 6mm and any of the available 6,5's as better alternatives for consideration over the.308.
 
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