Welcome to LRH. I would imagine and hope that the SPS would al least shoot MOA (1" @ 100yds, 2" @ 200yds, etc.) but I don't have any experience with that model. It will allow you to get the feel of the rifle and cartridge though. Savage's are great rifles for the money and usually shoot sub MOA. Remingtons a little pricier, but usually shoot sub-MOA. I have heavy barreled Rem/Win/Sav and they all shoot sub MOA to 600yds with handloads. I'm currently loading the 180gn Ballistic Tip with 69.0gns of H4350 and a Rem 9.5M primer. I'm getting close to 3100fps and shooting 3.6" at 560yds. This from a lightly used Savage 112BVSS in .300WinMag, with a Nikon BuckMaster 6-18X40 (Target Dot reticle). I installed a Rifle Basix trigger and have less than a grand in this setup.
Like geargrinder: not too fond of the Choate type stock's. IMO they're butt ugly. I have a Rem 700Police and I don't particularly like the thick palm swell of it. I owned the first generation of Sendero's and like their stocks better. I also like/gravitate to laminates.
I wasn't sure if, when you mentioned cylinder barrels, you were talking about straight/no taper or heavy/varmint profile. I stick with varmint profile (approx. .820") also. I've read alot of good about Pac-Nor barrels. Don't think you'll have any trouble if you stick with the major custom barrel mfg's.
Remingtons are great, but if thats the same stock as the sps varmint has with the vents they are hit or miss. I bought one last year in 308 and couldnt get moa @ 100yds. It was consistantly like 1.5 moa with all different types of ammo. Finally I switched the stock and then it was alot better. But over all they are good guns.
Thanks for the advise guys. Texas, I was considering a .308 in the SPS varmint. However, many people told me to go with the .300 win. because it shot flatter and retained more ft. lbs. at long range. I did have a Browning BAR Safari in.300 win, and didn't find the recoil too bad. I am a big dude, so I've got a little cushion. That said the .308 is not out of the picture. Did you have another SA cal. I should look into? Also, I have been looking at Boyd's Thumbhole stocks. They are a laminate type that comes in a LH model. They look very nice, and I'm starting to lean toward them. I was curious about the optimal twist and length of a barrel for the .300 and the .308 for that matter? I may be getting a head of my self, but I was wondering. Also what would need to be done to the replacement stock? They claim it's a drop in, but i'm sceptical.
I've shot/hunted with both (.308 & .300) and I prefer the .300WM. Whatever the .308 can do at 750yds the .300WM does at 1000yds(velocity & energy). The .300 takes more powder, 15-25gns depending on the powder, but that's one of the prices you pay for performance.
A gunsmith friend got one of the Boyds gray laminate, thumbhole stocks for a custom Rem700 6BR build and I was impressed with the stock. He got it unfinished (exterior) and I only saw it after he was done, but it turned out beautifully. It was a drop-in and I'm sure he fiberglass bedded it for a perfect stock to action fit.
Not sure it's optimal but I'd go no shorter than 26" for the .300. The .308, I think can get away a little shorter, 24", maybe 22". Not sure on that, but I like longer barrels anyway. Twist rates for both? I'd say 1-10". JohnnyK.
The above is most correct about the boyd's gun stocks. They do require finishing, but the stock is a drop in. My neighbor and long time shooting partner has one one supporting his 26" pac nor tube, and it looks great. If you want something with a little work in it, get a boyds. If you're ready to start shooting, go with the HS. It's expensive, but it is most certainly a ready-to-go drop in, and it's very well made. If you're on a budget, get a bell and carlson and do a home bedding job.
I will not argue with the fact that the 300 wm out thumps the .308. Personally, i feel that all .308s need to be buried deep below earth's crust and never raised up again.... but, like the 30.06, they have much too loyal of a following (though i think the .06 is more deserving.)
I've culled cow and spike elk with 17 remingtons and 204 rugers on texas game ranches, so the old idea of a cannon being needed to bring down large deer and elk is bogus.
The same people that incessantly brag about their big 30s probably pack a .45 in their pants just like I do, and they will be the first to speak up on behalf of its great power (some 500 lbs of energy.)
YOu don't need a cannon. You just need someting that you can place shot after shot with...but don't get me wrong. I have 4 300 wm rifles, but i don't hunt with them unless its dangerous game... and there's not much of that around.
Other short actions to consider: 260 rem (6.5-08), 243 AI (Ackley Improved), 7mm-08 (my favorite), 6.8 SPC (great at 500 yds.) and even the new 7mm and 270 wsm rounds. They are spectacular for me. I have one of each and they will run .75 moa out to 700 yds.
ANyway... good luck and keep the questions coming.
Okay, once again excuse my ignorance, what exactly is glass bedding? Is it fiberglass? I'm guessing it's a compound that makes the stock and action have a better fit. Should I be concerned with that yet? Also i've seen the term squaring the action. I have no clue what this means. Again, do I need to have this done? I looked a little more at the Boyd's stocks. They said they don't recommend them for heavy barrels. Couldn't I just sand the barrel valley until the barrel didn't touch. Also, what is required to finish a stock like that? I was thinking some sanding and a clearcoat. I'm not sure, but the one I was looking at seemed to be finished. Thanks in advance. I'm trying to soak this up like a sponge.
Well, as for the stock. "Some" sanding is an understatement. My neighbor spent 3 afternoons a week...sanding and marking... for six months. Then, he clearcoated it and finished the project. To do it right would take a while. Also, the heavy barrel thought is true. Add another 10-12 hours of sanding and you're there.
Glass bedding is glass epoxy, like acraglass. It is necessary on rifle stocks without bedding blocks. Yes, if you want to know what you're made of, its a must-have. If you will settle for an inch when you could have a half, ignore glass bedding.
Not everything i have is bedded, but all my rifles that i count on are. It does, as you stated above, make a secure, slip-free fit between the action and the stock.
Still wanting a cannon, or are you leaning toward a shorty?