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'Smithed factory vs custom

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Unread 07-03-2009, 09:23 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Nebraska
Posts: 410
Re: 'Smithed factory vs custom

I've gone both ways. Twice now.
First gun built was a .300 RUM It has a McMillan stock, Hart Barrel, Factory trigger with a great trigger job on it, Rem 700 Action all squared up and shoots like a dream.
Second rifle is a duplicate of the first and you can't tell them apart except by the hole in the end of the barrel if you don't check the barrel stampings. Its in a .25-06 AI tight neck. It shoots as good or better than the RUM.
Both rifles ran me in the $2500 area each and still needed optics so figure you will have $3500 in each of them or more depending on the scope and if you go cheap on optics your only fooling yourself. In keeping with fact that the guns are identical twins I put Leupold 6.5X20X40 VXIII LR.
The wife kind of revolted on the third gun so I went another way. I bought a Rem 700 VS .223 and mounted it up with the same scope. Had a trigger job done on it and worked my butt off finding a decent load for it. It will shoot a 3 shot group at 100 yds into .25 but for some odd reason it will throw the 4th or 5th out. Even with very carefully reloaded ammo. With some smithing it probably would quit that. But with optics and everything (bought it used with about 200 rounds down the tube) I probably have around $1500 in the gun. Still does everything I want it to out to about 500 yds and was actually a great investment and fun to shoot. But that flyer can really Pi$$ you off at times. Makes for a great excuse for misses though.
The last one is a Rem 700 VSSF II in .308 that I am slowly building up. It also was bought used from a guy that probably had 50 rounds down the tube and bought it for Elk hunting and found out that it was just a bit heavy for that.:-) I have put maybe another 100 rounds down the tube just playing with it with Federal blue box ammo and it shoots under 1/2 MOA all day with cheap ammo even. Haven't worked up a load for it yet but started customizing it. Wife had revolted again and put her foot down. It now sports a H.S. Precision tactical stock with the adjustable butt stock and comb. Leupold MK4 6.5X20X50 LRT M1 scope and MK4 Rings and 20MOA base.
The first two guns will still shoot rings around the last two right from the get go. Both are so accurate its almost boring. Their my long range hunting rifles. The second two are my go to guns most of the time because I like shooting them on PD's and all joking aside, for going PD shooting I sure don't want to replace a barrel on my hunting rifles by burning them up sooner than I need to and when either of the second set of guns burn out the barrels I already have the investment in them and can replace the barrel's for a lot less than another fully customized rifle purpose built from scratch and last but not least. The wife don't kick about me spending the money on replacing the barrel as "Its a lot cheaper than a custom built rifle DEAR"
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Unread 07-03-2009, 11:09 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Blackfoot, Idaho
Posts: 8,871
Re: 'Smithed factory vs custom


One can only wonder how/why Kyle Busch is always at the front of the NASCAR pack? Money if spent properly buys quality. Note the spent properly.

I have two rifles that I consider top of the line go to rifles for LRH.

Rifle 1:
495 Dollar donor REM 700 LH 338 Win Mag that due to several reasons the previous owner cut the stock down at a very improper angle and beat the hell out of himself. Thus the 495 price off of the consignment rack.

I reconfigured the stock did a pillar bedding job on it myself. Had a Holland QD installed to keep my collar bone in one piece. Installed a weaver tactical on a one piece Leuy base and Burris Signature rings. It was very accurate with 250 Sierras and 252 Wildcats. 1/2 MOA out to 800 yards "Most of the time". Flyers are mostly due to light weight of the rifle and the extended range. She weighs in at 9.5 pounds.

As the Win moniker isn't as sexy as RUM I snagged a 40$ 338 RUM Sporter take off barrel. Still shoots 1/2 moa and if I pay particular attention to my prone form shes good to 900 yards w/o adjusting windage on the scope.

Total cost: about 750 bucks not including the scope. No blue printing on action just squared up bolt and receiver face as part of barrel swap. Scope was $365 used from SWFA.

Why so accurate: Just plain luck.

(This will get you up front on a dirt track)

Rife 2:

Used my dad's old REM 721 action and trigger. Sent it to Kirby and said turn it into a 270 AM. I went inexpensive on the stock as my intention was to stock it myself. The rifle came back with a 125 buck B&C sporter stock. The shipping spec out of APS is 1/2" at 100 yds and I was told I would be very happy with this one. Man was I ever! My very few 1000 yd groups are frightening. This rifle and cartridge was designed around the 169.5 Wildcat bullet.

The only wrong thing I did was not being used to custom or semi custom rifles I thought I had to "work up" a load. Big mistake.

Those who purchase customs including being bedded by smith, just need to have the recommended load do the barrel break in while sighting in and developing the beginnings of a drop chart and KERPOW! you're ready to go.

(This might get you on the Nation Wide circuit)

Rifle 3: Being built by Kirby.
375 AM (I gotta be nutz - I think this was on my bucket list)
Batt action
Pac Nor Barrel
APS Pain Killer brake
Jewell trigger w/safety.
Batt (I think) 20 MOA base
NF Rings
Will have an NF scope.

Bottom line, a few more bucks, well a bunch more bucks but I know that she'll do what she's designed to do with no lack of confidence on my part.

All of this is to get the accuracy and power of the 270 AM just a few more yards away.

(This one gets you into the Daytona 500 with a decent opportunity to win)

Just stuff to think about.
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