I am putting parts together for my first custom hunting rifle. I am starting off with a Stiller Tac300 action with a Krieger #6 contour barrel chambered in 300 WSM sitting in a Manners MCS-T stock. After talking to a few gunsmiths, a detchable mag system is probably not going to work for me. So I am trying to decide on what internal mag system to use. So far I have found Pacific tool and guage bottom metals, factory Remington bottom metals and Wyatt's internal boxes. Anyone have an opinion on what combo will work best for me or maybe another company that I need to check out?
My next issue is what barrel length to use. Since this is going to be a hunting rig, I dont want the barrel length over 26". I plan on installing a brake, so that will add about 1.5" to whatever I use. I thought about going between 22-24" but i want to get the most speed that I can get while still having a rifle that I can easily pack around. Any thoughts/opinions?
24 plus brake should give you plenty of speed. PT&G makes real good stuff. I know that Dave collaborated with Kevin Wyatt on some bottom metal, but I do not know offhand if it included an internal magazine.
Using a long action on the 300 wsm you could use a standard remington box as it is plenty long enough. I would suggest as a inexpensive alternative to the floorplate, the Traxler ind. Kwik Klip mag system it is less than $100 and light. Feed lips on the mag just need to be slightly opened and it will feed exceptionally well.
If I was trying to keep the gun short, I would not have a problem using 22" of length. What is the real difference from 24" to 22 ", maybe 50-75 fps, run the numbers on a balistic calculator and at 800 yards its not as big a difference as you would think.
I agree with coyboy about using the Kwik Klip. It's a inexpensive alternative and it keeps you with a center feed detachable box. A standard long action mag box will work but I've had a lot of trouble getting the WSM cartridges to feed properly in a staggered feed. A TAC 30 (short action) would have done the job along with a Wyatts CFE5 box mag, and PTG bottom metal.
As far as barrel length a 24" barrel using Hornady 208g A-Max with a BC of .648 and a muzzle velocity of just 2800 will give you enough energy to cleanly take deer size game out to 1200 yards effectively. Knock the barrel down to 22" and loose 60fps and your only loosing 25 yards of effective range. The muzzle velocities are a little on the low end just to show the cartridge / bullet performance capabilities.
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Thanks for the help on this. I've decided to go with a PTG bottom metal and factory internals for the mag system.
As for the barrel, I've run into another question to figure out. If I go with a shorter barrel length at 22" would I be better off running a lighter bullet (say 180gr.) and a 1:11 twist or going to a heavier bullet (210gr) and a 1:10 twist. Basically, I need to figure out what twist rate I should go with.
Would I have enough barrel length at 22" to run 210's effectively and get the velocity I need to reach out to long distance or would 180's suit me better?
Or, if I want to use 210gr bullets, should I just get a 24" barrel to get the most out of the rifle?