Afternoon gentlemen, I have a few questions for you guys if you have a minute. I have a 700 (I believe it might be an Alaskan, it is stainless with a 24" barrel and synthetic stock) that is currently chambered in 7RM, but I am going to use it as a base for my first semi-custom rifle
. I have been doing a lot of reading and to me the 7 STW really looks like a great choice as I do know that I want to stick with the 7mm round, I guess I just like it!
Anyway, I am probably going to jump on the Benchmark group buy to get the barrel. I have been shooting the 168gr Berger VLD Hunting out of the 7RM with very good results, but in the 7 STW I would like to step up to the 180gr VLD's, and perhaps the mythical 195gr VLD's if they should ever appear. My question has to do with twist rate. As I am going to be ordering the barrel I can go with whatever twist I would like within reason. Is there any reason not to do a 1:8 or 1:8.5 as compared to the given 1:9 that kind of seems to be the standard? The lightest bullet that I would ever use would maybe be 140gr, but to be honest I do not know that I would ever even do that. I am kind of the type of person that will find a couple of rounds that work well, develop good loads, and then just use them. If the 195's ever appear it would probably be 168 VLD's and 195 VLD's, but to shoot the 195's Berger is saying that a 1:8.5 will be the minimum needed. I am in Texas so unless I go somewhere to hunt I will not be at a very high altitude for the most part. If I go with the 1:8 or 1:8.5 to be able to shoot the 195's I would probably have the smith put the Wyatt's extended box on it just to have the room for longer OAL's should I need it even though I have read where the STW likes a jump.
The second question is whether or not you think a brake is worth while on the 7 STW? I have never had a brake on a rifle, but other than being careful with the loud report the people who use them do seem to like having them. I just do not know if there is as much of a benefit on the STW as there is on one of the larger 300's or 338's.
I already have a Timney trigger on the 7RM that I will continue to use as I do like it, and I have a Viper FFP 6-24x50 PST that I will also use as I really like the scope as well. I am looking at different stocks right now, my goal is to have all of the components ready to send to the smith (whoever that will be, undecided right now) so that they will have all of the parts and not have to wait on ordering anything. While the rifle is being built I will try to get some brass and buy some dies. If push comes to shove I will just re-size some 8mm brass all though I have never re-sized before. I am looking forward to having the rifle built, it will be something that I will always keep until I hand it down to my son some day.
Thanks for your help!