The question is basically what barrel weight to go with?
I had a custom Rem 700 in 30-06 built for me back in 1982. With 4x Leupold, it is 6.5 lbs on the nose. I like the weight. I'm willing to add weight in barrel and scope. I've recently put a Nikon 4.5-14 w/ Mildot reticle on it. Love the scope. Might put the Leupold back on for hunting....might not!
Now it's time for a new Lilja barrel. The previous barrel was, I believe, the factory barrel at 22", which I had Mag-Na-Ported to reduce muzzle flip and recoil. Worked quite well I might add.
Now it's going to be a 26" tube in 30-06AI. That way, I will have minimal cost changing to a different caliber when it comes to reloading tools and on-hand components.
I'm having a hard time choosing either a #2, #3 or #4 contour. Lilja has these barrels in stock for immediate delivery. With a 2-week delay, he can either recontour or flute the #4 (per a telephone call with a young lady at Lilja yesterday).
My goal is to keep the rifle light; maybe not as light as it's original form but still under 7.5 to 8lb. Definately not the 11 lb beast (Win 70 w/ 3.5-10 Leupold) I used to carry back in the 70's and 80's.
I'm not expecting this to be a 1000 plus yd gun. My longest kill to date is 465 yds on an antelope. If I can get decent MOA groups out to 500-600 yds, I'll be satisfied. I'd like to go with the #2 contour as it would only ad about 5 oz to my current set up. The #3 contour would add about 14.5 oz but the #4 fluted would only add 10.5 oz. Problem is, i've been saving the dimes and quarters to get to where I can order the barrel. Not sure I want to wait the extra time necessary to save up another $125 to have the #4 fluted.
I looking for feedback from those who have used these contours and obtained decent MOA groups.