fo 200 yards and less my 20" sako mannlicher 30-06 is plenty for deer here. you are building get what you want.
Yes. My muzzleloader would do for 200 and under but I want a rifle that I could reach out to 4-500 yards if needed and not have a bull barrel that is very heavy and unbalanced. As I do plan to make the decision as to what I'm going to get built, I am just looking to see if anybody has suggestions or ideas I haven't thought about. People on this site are far mor experienced than I am. Therefore I ask. Did some research, didn't find as much info as I thought I would.
If it were me I would go with at least the #4 Magnum Sporter Shilen barrel. I have one of this size that is 27 3/4" long on a Rem 700 in 264 Win mag. With this size it would not be too heavy to carry easy if 24" long but would add just enough weight to shoot good. I have a 26" #6 in 25-06 that really handles great for shooting but is a bit heavy to be carrying around all day with that big old 30mm 3-12X56 Zeiss and H-S Precision varmint stock.
P.S. If you are going after the average white tail deer under 300 yards give the 125 gr Nosler ballistic tip a try in your 30-06. Just keep your impact velocity under 3000 fps. I have killed over 50 deer with this bullet and it hammers them DRT 99% of the time. Give 53.1 grs Varget a try.
Thanks for the info. I need to really give barrel length some more thought. I hear you on the BT's. I used to use 150 gr BT over 52 gr of 4064 if my memory serves me right in my old winchester model 54. Very deadly on the whitetails. Most did just drop in their tracks
I am a firm believer that if you are going to sink money on a custom barrel and rifle, you should get the most out of it as far as barrel length and contour, unless you have a specific need for a shorter or lighter barrel, such as a pack-rifle or some odd circumstances like that.
As for long-action calibers, short mags, and magnum calibers, I think 26" is a minimum...And 24" is the aboslute VERY minimum, for a pack rifle. That's just my opinion. And it needs to be atleast a #3 contour.
As for short-actions, like tactical rifles in .308 Win, .260, etc... 20" bull barrel is the minimum, with 24-26" bull being optimum.
These are not guidelines, and I am not a professional...This is just how I look at things, based on the reasonings and experiences I've had with alot of different guns in my short life.
You made no mention of a trigger. Very important upgrade for a rifle. I did a Mauser in 30/06 back when the peanut farmer was president. Used a Dayton - Traister tuned by a gunsmith and it was a huge improvement.
I agree with MudRunner on barrel length. Rack grade guns come mostly with 22" tubes and maybe a 24". It would be cheaper to buy factory if 22" - 24" is long enough. My Mauser sports a 27" barrel which is good for 100fps more than a 24". 100fps and change over a 22".
Stay with the 30/06 chamber. If you want more you are better off with a 300 WinMag or one of the newer short mags. A waste of time to go Ackley on the 30/06 these days. 300 RUM trumps just about everything.
No mention of a scope. I recommend you set aside at least $500 here. Pretty decent glass is available at that price point.
My best load for 30/06 shot in 5 different guns, mine and others, is: 180gr Sierra SpBT Game King, 56.5gr 4350, Remington 9 1/2 LRM primer, WW case. Clocks 2930fps from my 27" tube. Both 24" guns went 2800fps+ and I didn't chronograph the 22"s. Moderate pressure load and Hodgdon's IMR is a newer "Extreme" powder so a regular LR primer could replace the Magnum spark plug. Some people sneer at the Sierra GK but it has dropped everything I put it into. It probably does better in the 30/06 than most other cartridges as the velocity is optimal for it's design. Better bullets out there but I still shoot this one.
Good luck with your build and better hunting too! Nothing replaces the pride of owning a custom. Worth the $$$.
Kennibear, you are absolutely correct. I have not given all the information. My fault.
This rifle has been sporterized in the past. Has a timney trigger, receiver gas been drilled and tapped already as it has a scope on it. Bolt was reset, but a poor job of it. Trigger does need some fine tuning though. Rifle also has a decent walnut Monte Carlo style stock but I prefer a laminate for its weather beating abilities.
I also have an old winchester 54 that I used as a kid. Nice rifle but I don't like the stock design. This rifle sports a vx-3 3.5-10 power scope that will go on the rifle I build. My thought was to build up one of these rifles and I chose to do the mauser since there is a lot of aftermarket support for them and not much for the 54.
Check the McMillan stocks advertised on this site. Most people who own them love them! They come in a bewildering array of styles. Just have to pick and choose...
Have a mix of synthetic and laminate stocks here. The synthetics are comfortable and absolutely weather proof. My first choice. But youngest son put a laminate thumbhole on his 10/22 that is hands down the most comfortable stock I ever tried. So I don't have an opinion.