hey guy ! looking for some recommendations on a 280 ai build i'm trying to keep it as light as possible. i have a m70 action to build on . just wondering if anyone has built one and what your weight is. the build is for the wife,
I just built my .280AI off a Remington 721 long action with a #3 Bartlein barrel finished at 25" but then added a muzzlebrake. Set in a Manners Elite Hunter stock and topped with a Leupold VX3 4.5-14x50 LR scope. Not sure what the exact weight is but it feels extremely nice compared to my two 'long range' guns (a .260 and .338 Edge) that both weight around 14-15lbs. I would guess I'm in the 8-9lb range. Not ultralight at all but light enough and still feels very solid.
I have built my 280 on a win 70 action, McMillan featherweight in fiberglass ( not Edge) 24" krieger FWT contour barrel, topped with a 2x25 march scope and tally qd steel rings,and a CDI bottom metal and Magazine , and atlas bipod, 10.6 lbs as is. Probably could save a pound and half or 2 by using edge tech on the stock and staying with the original floor plate and lighter scope.
I built a 338-300wsm around a Win M70 short action. Pac Nor 24" ultralight barrel, bell and carlson medalist stock. I've run a few different scopes which change the weight around, but I want to move to a VX3 LR 4.5-14x50 and the new moa reticle, w/ Talley rings. That should bring the fully outfitted setup to right around 7.5 lbs. It's a dream to carry and kicks like a mule.
If I were to build it all over again, I would use either a McMillan edge fill stock or one of the new lightweight Manners stocks. The lighter stock would let me move to a little heavier barrel like a #3 fluted which would help tame the recoil/jump by moving mass to the barrel.
Good luck on your build, 280 AI is a sweet round. I think a rifle in the 7.5 pound range would shoot and carry/balance very well. A 280 AI could be a bit lighter, but any light rifle is going to kick so be careful! If you really want to go extreme on weight, then a brake might be a good option.