Re: build a budget rifle around this bullet...7mm 180gr Berger hunting VLD
Nice going guys, didn't take long to bump him to a Custom Rig! LOL
I like the 7WSM. My buddies Savage 7WSM, with the factory barrel, is usually good for .6-.7 moa, @1000yds, for 3 shots, with the 162 A-max and the 180 Berger. He has an aftermarket stock on it. We were going to put a heavy aftermarket barrel on it, but he feels it shoots plenty good enough as is.
However, if you are now bumping yourself up the price range, you may want to consider a Remington Sendero, or the Savage Long Range Hunter. Both are dedicated long range rigs for about $1000 that are top choices for off the shelf. Unfortunately, they are not available in the 7WSM. Not much is.....
I guess you have to decide on how soon you want to get started having some fun and learning the game of long range marksmanship. Off the shelf, you can get started right now. Or, if you want to wait awhile and have some fun putting together a custom rig thats alright too.
I've shot numerous rigs, off the shelf and custom, .5 moa @ 1000yds is pretty challenging. A good off the shelf rig with the right handload will get you sub-moa @1000 for 3 shots. If you are honestly bent on a .5moa 1000yd rig, the Savage long range hunter in 6.5x284 or a custom barrel 7mm would probably be your best shot. No promises.
A strong consideration in all of this long range shooting is- Do You Reload? I assume you do, or are planning on this also? Handloading savy will play a significant role in getting the most out of whatever rig you go with. No worries though, you have plenty of help standing by here at LRH.