# some rifle stocks better than others #

Discussion in 'The Basics, Starting Out' started by No Fear in Accuracy, Dec 18, 2013.

  1. No Fear in Accuracy

    No Fear in Accuracy Well-Known Member

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    I wondered myself why do shooters/hunters prefer this type of stock instead of similar stock.

    Mind you, I have a McMillan A-5 Adj. cheekpiece stock, using 6BR cartridge. :)

    I've researched and gather all information I need to build for my next project. My long range project will be either 338 AM/338 Snipetac or 338 Raptor.

    It seems that most popular are McMillan A-5 or Manners. That will handle high powered cartridge due to twist, shifting and better design.

    When I shoot at long range, I only touch with my thumb on the grip, one finger on the trigger, cheek weld lightly on the cheekpiece and shoulder lightly touches the butt.

    So why did you choose this stock over other stock? Based on looks, feel and weight?
    I wonder if I can use the laminated wood stock for high powered rifle. (see the picture below, red stripes on black). The price is around $200.

    McMillan A-5 is approaching $700 to $900.
     

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  2. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    Yes you can. Laminates are almost as strong as the best composites and just as weather proof as long as you reseal the channel and action area after final fitting, floating etc.

    I probably wouldn't put one on anything bigger than a 338wm, but wouldn't hesitate up to them.

    When you get into the super magnums it's probably best to go with one of the better composites just due to the higher density of the material and lower likelihood of it ever cracking or splitting.

    Solid wood is a different story because it does not have the epoxy embedded into it to strengthen it that the laminates do.

    I talked to one of the better custom composit stock makers in the country about possibly "needing" to replace one of my laminates with one of his and said there was really no need, not enough increase in strength to make a difference on a 300wm.

    Of course all that did was sell me on doing business with him in the future.
     

  3. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

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    I like wood stocks, both laminate and figured wood and both will make a very nice stock for a Cheytac based cartridge but it really boils down to what you like. I do like the McMillian A-5 on an ELR rifle because it sets well and tracks good under recoil but you can get a laminate or wood that is shaped the same and functions just as well. I would talk to Joel Russo, he's handy with the Cheytac based rounds and the wood/laminate stocks!!
     
  4. No Fear in Accuracy

    No Fear in Accuracy Well-Known Member

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    True, McMillan will be my first choice however if the wood laminated stock can handle super magnum for a period of time, then I'll go for laminated stock.

    My only concern is the recoil lug. It might move back and forth over time and it will become loose?
    I'm sure that the laminated wood stock is pretty strong and has good density as the composites.

    Sure, I'll email Joel Russo for his opinions and his clients.

    I was thinking as "comparison" between McMillan and Apple iPhone.
    When hunters/shooters saw others using McMillan, they want one but for no reason.

    Samsumg phone is like laminated wood. It is still good anyway. :)
     
  5. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    The laminate is not going to move any more than any other stock that's been bedded. The lamination process used infuses an epoxy throughout the wood and then they are compressed under very high pressure to produce the sheets of laminate.

    They are made essentially in the same way that gang lam, laminated beams are which we use in building homes specifically for strength over big windows, doors, or spanning very long distances between walls.

    When I bed a stock I purposely gouge out a good bit of material behind the lug as well as in front of it so that the lug is fully bedded into Devcon. Do the same thing on yours and don't sweat it a bit.
     
  6. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't hesitate for a second to use anything made by him. he knows his wood.
     
  7. No Fear in Accuracy

    No Fear in Accuracy Well-Known Member

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    That's good to know.

    Adding laminate wood to my project list.
     
  8. Joel Russo

    Joel Russo Official LRH Sponsor

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    I have stocked many large caliber rifles in laminated wood stocks without issues. Although my first choice would be a laminated hardwood blank, the laminated birch blanks offered by a few suppliers will work as well.
    The "industry standard" laminated panels come from suppliers like Rutland or Cousineau. They use a birch veneer, saturate it with epoxy and compress it under hight pressure to make the blank.
    Over the years, I have had issues with panels de-laminating and "not so good birch" veneer being used. The birch is a fair material at best, but by introducing the expoy, we now have a useable somewhat stable blank to work with.
    When using these birch laminated blanks for heavy hitters, I prefer to make the stock in a single shot configuration. When you cut a large hole in the bottom of the stock, you essentially compromise the integrity of the stock. When the energy from the recoil is transferred from the back of the lug to the bedding, the sidess of the stock will "bow" under this compression. It is a minimal amount, but nonetheless it will happen. Same effect will happen with a composite stock as well.
    As for the bedding... I mill the recoil lug mortise to encompass a sufficient amount of bedding. A proper bedding of the barreled action into the laminate stock will give you worry free service over the life of the barrel...
    In summary, a properly made and bedded laminated stock will suffice for a large caliber rifle.
     
  9. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Like most people I like what I like.

    From a strength stand point I would put a good laminate up against any other type and cost of stocks

    Most of the precision rifles (Bench Rest are on Laminate stocks) They are very strong and very stable. Not believing hardly anything I hear, I decided to test the difference in stability.

    I placed 4 different types of stocks on a concrete slab with a 20lb bag of shot on the butt stock and a dial indicator the same distance from the end of the but stock on the fore arm. I even shaded the dial indicators to prevent heat from effecting them.

    After 30 minuets in the sun I found the most effected by heating on one side was the Tupperware (No big surprises) next was the all wood factory stock. (Different woods would probably have an effect on the warping amount.

    Next was a High dollar composite. And the laminate had the least deflection of all of them.

    I realize this was not a very scientific test but it did tell me what stock material was less effected
    by uneven heat and was the most stable.

    As far as strength, I have laminates on most of my Big bore rifles and have never had a failure.

    All this aside , I like Laminates.

    J E CUSTOM
     
  10. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

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    I love wood, and for strength, durability and "practicool" you just can't beat the laminates. Other than some of the quality walnut that people like Joe will craft into a stock that is a pure work of art nothing looks better to me on a rifle than a brown tones or grey/black tones laminate.

    If one wants to build a light weight mountain gun though that still has great strength it's time to step up to the high end composites.

    The other place the good composite stocks beat all types of wood is changes in dimension with extreme cold, but they do not beat the laminates by much.
     
  11. No Fear in Accuracy

    No Fear in Accuracy Well-Known Member

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    That's good to know. I doubt that the laminate wood can cause cracks over time? Say 5 to 8 years?
    If well cared, store in indoors, do I need to paint it every several years?
     
  12. No Fear in Accuracy

    No Fear in Accuracy Well-Known Member

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    Impressive review based on your experience.
    Are the laminate wood stock more heavier than high dollar composite on the same design?
     
  13. Joel Russo

    Joel Russo Official LRH Sponsor

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    Laminated stocks should not crack over time if the blank used was properly glued up, and if it was properly finished when made. The final finish of the stock will seal the wood and protect it from the elements.

    Just remember... The wood stock is only as good as the finish you put on it.
     
  14. J E Custom

    J E Custom Well-Known Member

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    Yes; They are the heavy's of all the stocks. but with the wood grain running in many different directions they dampen the harmonics of firing, and with a good pillar bedding, They also absorb lots of sound and improve the balance of heavy barreled rifles.

    Composites have there place, especially when trying to reduce the overall weight. but some opt for the light weight of the composite stock and then hang a 4 pound scope on it defeating the purpose.

    As to the longevity of laminates; I have a match rifle that has fired over 20,000 rounds and is over 40 years old and it still looks and performs just as good with no failures, cracks or de-laminations.

    This is another Chevy / ford debate and there will always be different opinions on which is best.

    J E CUSTOM