With so many rifles to choose from, it can often be difficult to determine which rifle would be ideal for a survival situation, whether it’s one that you stash in the truck in the event that you’re stranded in the sticks or you’re using that same truck to bugout to the sticks.
But all too often, I’ve seen folks reaching for that semi-auto beauty for such a purpose. While these weapons can certainly give you that needed fire superiority in a tactical situation, it’s going to fall short when you’re stuck in the backwoods and have to put meat on the fire to keep from starving.
Just like with knives and secondhand tweed blazers, there is no one-size-fits-all option when it comes to firearms — even though we often try in vain to make it work sometimes.
In most cases, the best use for semi-auto rifles is for combat applications (or the occasional hunting weekend).
Essentially, the fundamental reason why a battle rifle is going to fall short when you’re stuck in the sticks is because you won’t be able to head back to the armory (or gun store) in the event that you’ve lost a spring, detent or some other tiny-but-critical mechanical part of the weapon. Now, I’m not necessarily saying that bolt or lever guns are completely exempt from this issue, but I AM saying that they are certainly simpler creatures, which don’t have near the number of moving parts that can break, wear out, or get lost.
Semi-auto weapons have an additional degree of mechanical complexity that gives them that additional functionality; however, any time you add complexity, that’s when you’re inviting problems.
And a survival situation is certainly a scenario in which you’ll want to avoid problems to the very best of your ability.