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Just for fun - let's design a bolt action

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Unread 12-13-2004, 12:56 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Sask. Canada
Posts: 2,410
Just for fun - let\'s design a bolt action

What would be the ultimate hunting weight bolt action design?

Consider things like: # of bolt lugs, recoil lug, safety, trigger, feed design, bolt handle, scope base mounting, rails, bolt stop, extractor, ejector system, round or flat bottomed profile, steel type etc.

What the hell - might as well include barrel contour, length and weight.

What the double hell - let's discuss favored stock design, material, bedding procedure.

What the triple hell - what caliber(s)/cartridge will this dream-rig be chambered for

I will start the game:
.. round action profile with an integral recoil lug - big enough for .338 Lapua sized cases, also a smaller size for magnum, WSM's and 06 case head, third little one for varmint cases
.. M-70 bolt handle
.. M-70 safety, three position, quieter tho
.. M-700/M-70 push feed recessed style bolt face
.. type of steel - no idea which is best
.. extractor - big honking Sako style
.. ejector - plunger style, maybe two big ones?
.. trigger - M-70 style, set properly, simplest there is
.. here goes a good one - detachable three-shot magazine, double locks - front and back - must be tactical tough
.. if not detachable mag a tough one-piece setup like the Badger or Williams
.. number of locking lugs - two big suckers
.. barrel - #4 contour, fluted, 25" long unless a super magnum, then 28"
.. finish on all metal - teflon or equivalent - no rust, I like OD green guns
.. stock - First choice:
.. Hunter's Edge from McMillan, but put a Limbsaver pad on - color would be Olive Drab, brown, black mix gel coat (McMillan does not do that now)
.. second choice - the original Rimrock stock - fits like a glove, tough, would like to see one built with carbon fibre like the Hunter's Edge - same colors as above
.. third choice - lightweight carbon fibre HTG, same swirl colors
.. stock would have flush mounts for sling

.. calibers: .338 Lapua, various .30 cal magnums including .300 WSM, ,308 Win., 280 Rem. Improved, 6.5-06 Improved
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Unread 12-13-2004, 02:01 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: May 2001
Posts: 2,369
Re: Just for fun - let\'s design a bolt action

Are you bored Ian???

Musta been a big snow up your way.

Action: The Rem 700 round style action is good.

Recoil lug: I'd like integral, big flat tough (like a girl's gym teacher)!

Bolt Handle: Options needed... how about a securely attacked stub and interchangeable ends??? The M70 is rounds so there's no problem screwing one off or one. The Badger Ordnance type is/are also omnidirectional so it could be screwed on by the end user. AND we all know folks will lose one or two so it's a simple item for later cash flow at the gun shop (a cash cow).

The three position Winchester is fine but make it long enough so it can be operated with the right thumb like the Rem safety. I'd only use it in the "middle" and "off" positions anyway.

I like push feed too but I have a number of short stroking friends that are always trying to double feed their rifle. Maybe CRF for the klutz.... naaaa.. push feed.

Steel: NOT Aluminum... not even tough aluminum.

Extractor: Sako is good.

Ejector: How about one that doesn't press on the round while it's in the chamber. If that's too difficult then a plunger.

Trigger: I don't care what type so long as it's not going to creep on the pull setting. Simple is better.

Detachable mags means lost mags (another cash cow). Whatever we choose it's gotta be tough and offered in a flush (or near flush) configuration. I'd prefer a follower and hinged floorplate like the Williams, Dakota or Badger stuff.

Lugs: two is good, three maybe.

Barrels: I don't care as long as they're fat.... no skinny barrels!!!

Finish: Teflon OD is nice, black if there is a rebellion of color.

Stock: Carbon Fiber HTG. I'll put my own skate-board rough tread non-slip tape on it.

Sling mount type: I don't like whatever is designed to hold the rifle on my shoulder to have the ability to arbitrarily detach. Flush mounts are quick detach I believe... and sometimes the operator isn't informed by the sling when they go into the quick detach mode. I like Wichita, tough and not detachable.

Caliber: Store bought ammo, 243, 260, 280, 308, 30-06, 300 Win mag, 300 WSM, 325 WSM, 416 Rem, 300 RUM, 338RUM, 338 Lapua, 416 Rigby, 30-387, 375 H&H, 378 Weatherby. All on the same action maybe... only one action type.

Flat spot on the action for an anti-cant level.

straight turned barrel at the muzzle for a clamp on emergency front sight. Emergency rear sight that can clamp onto the Picatinny rail.

Optional spare barrel(s) of differing or same cartridge. Buy a barrel vise and switch barrels.

Slotted receiver to engage the scope rail... no chance of the rail being sheered off.. #8 screws minimum.
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Unread 12-13-2004, 02:02 PM
Posts: n/a
Re: Just for fun - let\'s design a bolt action


I posted almost this same question way back sometime shortly after I joined and my member# is 414 so I suspect it was very close to the opening of this web site.

Are we considering manufacturing methods? If so then an action with an integral recoil lug is going to need to be cast or molded in some fasion as machining it from solid stock will requre a large dia start piece and much scrap leftover from machining leading to higher cost for the consumer.
I do agree on the round shape of the action as it is the easiest to work with on a lathe.
I dont really have a prefference on the style of the bolt shroud so either the rem or the win will work.
I sugest for the carbon steel action 4350 or 4130 heat treated to rc50~60.
The bolt material something along the lines of 8600 series steel.
For stainless 17-4 15-8, or 13-8, 416, 410 they are all good and strong for the stainless action body.
For the stainless bolt something opposite of the material used for the action as galling will occur if same metals are used and create headaches.
Caliber well some sort of huge case capacity 300 or 338.
Barrrel weight well something stiff enough to give us repeatable accuracy and one shot cold bore accuracy.
Stock hmmm mcmillan a5 adjustable or awic or a nice fat laminated one fully adjustable.
The rest of the stuff you mentioned I'd go with also.
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Unread 12-13-2004, 03:33 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Sask. Canada
Posts: 2,410
Re: Just for fun - let\'s design a bolt action

Dave(s) - both so far
Yup, bored silly. Lot's of writing to do, but easing back into it. Spent all last week traveling to outfitter conventions so did not do any shooting or writing. Heard lots of great hunting stories tho, saw some pictures of some real big bucks at the Sask. meeting.

I missed the original post suggesting this topic - thanks for your input. There is always room for improvement - understand that there are some new semi custom actions coming out - one from Williams and another from Stiller but have not seen anything as far as details. Forgot to consider how the action would be made, machined vs cast - good point.

Dave's idea of easily replaceable barrels is also interesting - I have shot some of the German rifles that switch barrels, found them to be somewhat underwhelming.

Scope bases are also a biggie. Why not machine the bottom half of a set of rings right into the top of the action, put them on a 20 moa slope. Drop the scope on, tighten the top clamp and shoot the sucker. No doubt there are a bunch of reasons why this is a dumb idea but what the hell.
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Unread 12-13-2004, 08:08 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,515
Re: Just for fun - let\'s design a bolt action

Ian,make a series of polls with diffrent choices of components. Have a poll for each major part and then at the end detail what the group has come up with. Be as detailed as you want and even put in choices of manufacturers for things like the barrel. Dont forget to survey everyone for choice of caliber and even intended purpose. It could turn out to be dang cool.

(Then you can have one made and donate it to me for coming uo with this helpfull idea) [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
GRAVITY. It's not just a good idea. It's the LAW!
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Unread 12-13-2004, 08:18 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Sask. Canada
Posts: 2,410
Re: Just for fun - let\'s design a bolt action

I am lucky to get this damn computer turned on each morning, let alone do fancy stuff! Feel free [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]
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Unread 12-13-2004, 09:12 PM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,515
Re: Just for fun - let\'s design a bolt action


I'm the same way. If it weren't for my wife I would be without a computer.

Posting polls here is very easy and you probably know infanitely more about what choices are available and practical.

I'll tell you what, If you will help me via email (since private messages are not yet enabled (hint hint Len)) I will post the questions.

If you're up for it I will begin to think of the best way to build this poll and you think of the major LR hunting niches that we would want a special gun made for. Next would naturally be choosing the appropriate cartridge. That question alone will require a bit of help since there are so many possibilities and so many rounds are overlapping and even redundant.

What do you say? Want to build the ultimate LR concept rifle?
GRAVITY. It's not just a good idea. It's the LAW!
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