I am new to the site. I have been toying with the idea of doing a custom or semi custom rifle build for a while now and this site has been an excellent source of information.
First, a little background on what I am trying to do. My rifle hunts are limited, as I am mainly an archery hunter. There are, on occasion, though so rifle hunts that I can do every year. Basically my target species are everything from coues deer to bears to elk.
I am looking for a rifle with 1000 yard capability, but will more then likely never have to actually shoot that far. I am guessing 700-800 yard shots will be the norm. I have never shot those distances, so my plan is to get the rifle and with a ton of practice, be ready to shoot by the 2011 fall hunting season.
I have narrowed my caliber choices down to the .300 RUM and the 6.5x284. I haven't really ruled out any other caliber but these two I like the most.
My question is if it's really possible to do a custom build for under $1000? I already have a Leupold VariXIII 6.5x20 sitting in the safe for this gun. Only thing I need to do is get it sent off to add turrets.
I am a serious rookie when it comes to this stuff, so bare with me. I am still in the learning phase!
Thanks in advance for all the input. I appreciate it.
You could probably come in under $1000 if you go conservative. Buy an old Rem 700 for $300. Pillar bed the original stock yourself or have a friend. A good barrel will run about
$350. Have a competent gunsmith lap the bolt, install the barrel, and tune up the trigger and you are about at $1000.
My opinion....skip the 6.5-284 and go right to the 300RUM. I have seen literaly hundreds of 6.5-284's at the firing line at 1K br matches, but I wouldn't put them in my top 10 for LR hunting, unless its P dogs, or the ocasional antalope.
Again, just my opinion. I don't have one, but I do have a 6.5 WSSM, which is getting around 2950 with the 140 Bergers. I leave it at home and use one of my 300 wby's. I may let my kids use it (the 6.5) next year...it will be a big step up from the Dasher they use now.
As far as the 1000 limit.....I will let the experts chime in on that issue.
This weekend Cabelas had rem 700 ADL in blue for $459 and stainless for $549. I shot my elk this year with the stainless version in 338 ultramag at 740 yards. It averages 4" groups at that range. The Cabelas deal came with a hard gun case and a 3-12 cabelas scope on it. So yes, you can do very well with a rifle that doesn't brake the bank. It comes in 300 ultramag also. You do not need a custom unless you just want one and have the money. My son shot his antelope at 512 yards and deer at 356 yards with an off the shelf used Mk 5 wby in 257 wby mag. Gave $550 dollars for it at cabelas with a 3-10 nikon Monarch scope on it. It shoots groups in the 1" range at 400 yards.
Predictions are difficult, especially when they involve the future
I would recommend looking at a new or slightly used Sendero in 300 RUM. If you want to do a custom the right way, it will cost close to $2000 and that's using a factory action. By the time you get a custom barrel chambered and crowned and action blueprinted and set in a good pillar or aluminum block bedd stock You are looking $2000, give or take. For just ove $1000 you can get a new Sendero that will very likely be a tack driver right out of the box. There are no guarantees like there would be with a custom, but from the reports I read probably 9 out of 10 are sub .5 MOA rifles and I have 2 of them. My 300 RUM is consistintly shooting about .5 MOA, give or take a little out to 500 yds. You'll of course need to do some load development for good consistant LR shooting.
For 700-900 yd shooting, depending on bullet/load/accuracy, you migh look at Sub MOA Vanguard in 300 WSM. The Sub MOA Vanguards are guaranteed for accuracy and come with a factory shot target that will show a .75" group or less. I've seen some that are less than .5 They are a Howa action placed in a good pillar bedded B&C stock. You can get a SS for about $850.
If you're going to be hunting elk, I highly recommend at least a 30 cal.
Last edited by MontanaRifleman; 11-30-2009 at 01:16 PM.
If you supply an action, you should be able to have it re-barreled for about 5-600 bucks. Re-use the old stock and you are in a semi-custom rifle. Mine that I have done have turned out very well. Just have a good smith do the re-barrel.
Your two choices leave a wide gap. I would recommend that you add the 300 WSM to the list.
Also, take a look at the Savage line. You can buy off the shelf heavy barrel WSMs that are shooting well under MOA. Also you can buy one of the savage FTR, LR in 308 and simply rechamber it and add a new bolt head into the WSM or maybe RUM
Another reason for the WSM, when you say "ton of practice" that might mean that by fall the RUM barrel is shot out while the WSM has 2-4x the barrel life.