I recently had a rifle built up in 6.5-.308 Rem. 700, with a 27" Lilja barrel and Borden stock, etc. by Jim Cloward. Although I spec'd out that I wanted a longer magazine box installed so I could shoot a 2.9" cartridge rather than 2.8", using the 140 grain bullets, the smith installed the longer box but only throated the rifle for 2.8" long rounds. When I got the rifle home and called up with the issue, he told me it would be a "mistake" to throat it out to effectively speaking 2.930 instead of 2.830 as I'd only gain 0 to 20 feet per second. According to my calculations I'd be gaining approximately 1.4 grains of powder capacity. Are his fps gain estimates accurate or it there a likelihood of greater velocity gains than this minor improvement?
What 140gr bullet did you wanted it throated for also did you give him a case with the bullet and say this is what I want. I know some of the ogives are different so that can make a difference in oal. If you look at the sierra mk say in 140 gr and rem 140 big difference same a smk 142 gr. By not giving him a round alot can come into play he said I said. For the odd ball stuff I have done I normally get the reamer and tell them what bullet I want to use have a dumbie round made up plus loaded to for the gunsmith to test also give me chance to see how good of a chamber job he did plus I always have another dumbie to check before I take rifle home never know kind of keeps everyone honest. I'm having a 6/22-250 set up now for the 68gr bullets gunsmith already has everything from rounds to reamer. For me it wouldn't be about velocity etc it should be about oal and if he a round why wasn't it done that way and if things where change why wasn't I informed. Just my .02
I just did a ladder test w/ H4350 and 142gr SMK last week, and went from 42.0gr thru 44.5gr, w/ almost a 150fps spread (just under 2800 to just over 2940). Ended up goin w/ 42.5, as there were no pressure signs, and a little better accuracy (@ 300yds). That, and by the numbers I ran on the 'puter, it showed about a whopping 1/2 minute advantage @ 1000yds to the fastest load vs.the slowest. About 1/4 minute at 600yds. Personally, I figured less powder down the barrel for essentially the same wind effect... mo' betta.
Most loads in a .260 Rem have a fair amount of air space behind the bullet anyway, enough that if you shake the case you can hear the powder in them. Varget, RE-19, H4350, so far all of these have a considerable air space when loaded to max. behind a 140 class bullet. Maybe not behind a 100-120gr class bullet, dunno. About the only load I've heard of where there wasn't physically enough space in the case is a still charge of H1000 behind a 142gr SMK... fellow has to trickle the charge in thru a drop tube to get it to fit [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]
Yes, I definitely understand what you mean Roper about depths. Suffice it to say everything was very clearly spec'd out and he apparently did what he felt was best instead. Although it was not in writing, I guess I've learned my lesson for next time. But given the exemplary reputation of this smith, I thought I was ok. On the reamer, he highly recommended I use his reamer for 6.5-.308 tight-necked instead of the 6.5-.284 I went in requesting. That's fine I guess. I understand it's a more efficient cartridge. So I ok'd him using his reamer and when questioned on the throating depth he said he'd use a throating reamer to throat out to the 2.9" length I wanted. So I bought all the tools for neck turning, preturned some of the cases during prep and then found out he enlarged the neck to standard .260 Rem dimensions after all.
If you are interested in the whole story, well, how far to go into this, hmmm... This is the second gun I've taken to this smith in 3 months. The first was a repair: told it would be $198, turned out it was $260 and no additional items noted. This second gun was a complete buildup. The price rose about $180 when it was complete from his out-the-door price I required before the buildup started after what happened the first time. That's in addition to the $120 for a set of RCBS dies that I could have gotten for $30. Now I got home and found out that a problem with there not being enough clearance between the bolt shroud and the receiver that was pointed out to him and he agreed to fix, also was not done. The problem was/is that it was actually contacting enough to lightly groove the metal of the shroud under recoil! So I have to bring it back and then return for another trip later to get it. Also, none of my original components were returned. Also, with the longer mag box there apparently wasn't enough room left in this stock to fit a forward trigger guard screw (it's an ADL now and was a BDL) so it was just left open - and the way the rear of the guard was installed it flexes out around a hunred thous. and will let debris in around/under it in the field. Lastly the doggone recoil pad wasn't even installed cleanly and has gaps between the stock and the base of the pad in several areas of probably .0060. Needless to say I'm pretty disappointed after supplying the reciever and over $1900. Then he wanted another $25 (until I called back and protested) to rethroat the gun to the 2.9" length we had agreed on and spoken of several times. He also ended my 3 follow up calls today (I was trying to get this squared away professionally and constructively while he was not) quite curtly, obviously irritated and ended the last call very abruptly.
I don't want to get into who this smith was he's not here to defend himself and hopefully this was an isolated incident with my gun only and he was having a really bad day, but I guess I'd emphatically recommend to others getting guns built to definitely not to rely solely on a gunsmiths reputation and get EVERYTHING in writing before the work begins. Learn from my mistake! It keeps everyone on the same page with expectations, and accountable too.
Beartrack sound like your gunsimth is a living legend in his own mind. If it's any help I've been there also. Hear some good things about the 260AI and 6.5x55AI also. Well good luck and let us know how that rifle shots.