I currently own three ultimate poor mans long range hammers
built by Kirby. He not only makes the hottest uber mags, he will built you a semi-custom gun. I had new 300, 338 & 375 RUMS. Because the 300 was a SENDARO with 26" fluted SS tube and was shooting sub MOA AND I found a bargain on a used Savage 300 RUM, I sent him the Savage and the Rem 338, 375. For not much more than your budget they all have 30” Lilja #8 contour. pipe, trigger job, custom stock, Holland QD brake, scope rail hole bored to #8-40 (per
- they all shot sub 1/2 MOA with minimal load dev. The 375 kicks less than my .243 winny.
The 300 RUM/Savage/Kirby/Lilja has a fast twist 1:11 tube that shoots 155gr scenars. I was thinking of having Kirby build me a 300 rum with a 1:8 twist to shoot the new 240gr MK, but why? The 300gr MK out the 338 RUM is far superior.
The 375 RUM is actually the most fun to tote around and shoot, being the lightest (biggest diameter).
The 338 does everything the 300 does, only better. I'll probably have Kirby make my next hammer a 338 RUM Improved with 300 RUM length brass (not sure if that's necessary as you can't fill 338 RUM brass now when shooting 300gr pills, but perhaps you can with the slowest powders and a 36" tube)
Pick up a used 338 RUM (they are dirt cheap as they kick too hard for mortals). Have Kirby or another good smith put a Lilja or other quality pipe on it and a good brake (I recommend Holland QD), trigger job - and you've got the ultimate long range hammer. You should be able to do that for close to your budget. You won't be able to get the heavy/long #8 contour or new stock, but you can still end up with a sub 1/2 MOA Long Range Hammer.
Or go out and buy a tubed amp and a Harley [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]