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Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by 338savage, Jul 15, 2019.
looking at buying a new rifle what one would you buy?
Without doubt the Hell's Canyon in 6.5 PRC! That rifle comes in a 7 twist. That and the added case capacity of the PRC cartridge would be perfect for the new 6.5 156 Gr. Berger bullets. Plus, it is just a much nicer rifle all the way around.
do they shoot good tho ?
Don't own one so really cannot say. I have a Browning A-Bolt in 7RM that I have had since the 1987. It was a 1" gun for most of it's life. The actions are very nice and probably as smooth or smoother that what a Tikka is supposed to be. Browning has really stepped up their game with the Hell's Canyon and such. The 7 twist barrel is a huge plus. I believe the insides of their barrel are lapped now. Another huge plus.
Would bet money it shoots at least as well as a Tikka. I have never hear anyone complain about the accuracy of the new Brownings. You do actually hear complaints about Tikka accuracy from time to time.
I think for a hunting rifle, the Browning would be a much better choice. If you are just wanting to shoot steel, the Tikka would work.
I've had a couple X-Bolt Stalkers - cheapest of the line - and both shot well. The 7RM has been a great performer though a bit of a bear to haul up a mountain; the 6.5CM was also an accurate shooter even with factory ammo. Either could reliably keep around an MOA.
The newer and pricier X-Bolts like the Pro resolve the only issues I had with my rifles: the carbon fiber stock is much more rigid and not susceptible to bending into contact with the barrel if you use a Rifleman's sling, and they are hand lapped/air gapped at factory which helps ensure a faster barrel break-in without a lot of copper fouling to scrub out.
As I don't have one of the new Pro or similar "semi-custom" X-Bolts, as Browning calls them, I can't speak to the efficacy of the lapped barrel, but I've seen enough custom barrel makers claiming the benefits - and spent enough time cleaning new barrels during break-in to ensure a consistently burnished barrel - to consider the process important.
A friend bought a Hells Canyon, it is a much more complete unit than the Tikka. He killed a Bighorn at 612 yards with it. It was a 6.5 CM, not the PRC.
Another vote for the X-BOLT. Nothing against Tikka, but in your case the HC is probably better suited.
Is the browning pricier? It seems the better value imo
The only downside the ctr is still the synthetic tikka stock and aluminum recoil lug. When I considered buying one it was with pricing in a replacement stock.
I went with the Sako a7 range instead but I don’t think they make that in any 6.5 at the moment.
I don’t know what makes the Browning a “much more complete unit”, or if it’s better suited for you...but I do know CTR’s shoot well, with zero work done to them. I had a 20” stainless version in 6.5 cm, and it shot several different factory rounds very well. I did a bunch of research on them before I bought it, and I didn’t find any accuracy complaints. I have read complaints about the factory stock, but it seemed like those were from people who hadn’t actually used one. I’m pretty sure the new recoil lugs are steel.
There is a bunch of info on the CTR on 24hourcampfire; guys over there really like them. I have no experience with the Browning, so I can’t comment on it.
Love my t3x ctr. Prolly has a better trigger and smoother action than the browning imo. I believe the newer t3x models have steel recoil lugs. Stock isn’t the best. I’ll be upgrading mine soon. I will say it beats a Tupperware stock from many other manufacturers. Browning wins in the stock for sure. If it’s a hunting rifle, go with the PRC.
Don’t know anything about the browning hells canyon. I have heard not all smiths will rebarrel a browning because they glue the barrels in. I don’t know only repeating what I’ve read.
That being said I am very impressed with the tikka. My son and I just got back from a shoot with his tikka. It shoots .5 and under most days when he does his job. I decided to clean the rifles because of how much dirt was blown around. I cleaned a Christensen Arms, a Lilja, a tikka, and a bergara barrel. All of these rifles had about 150 rounds through them. The Tikka was far and away the easiest barrel to clean. Followed by the lilja, Christensen,then bergara.
Maybe we got lucky, but I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend a tikka. It is the slickest barrel I’ve ever seen. And is a tack driver.
I think both rifles would serve you well, but your question is tough to answer without a lot more information.
I think the Browning is a lighter rifle, so if weight is a significant factor I'd probably lean that way.
And if the extra performance of the PRC is important, that says Browning too.
But I wouldn't buy a PRC unless you handload, as factory ammo is quite a bit more expensive - like 50%. And the selection is much more limited too.
Both brands are known to have good barrels, but I think the Sako-barreled Tikka gets the edge here. The heavy-barreled Sako/Tikka rifles like the CTR are hand-selected and receive additional QA, which is probably why the CTR has such a glowing accuracy reputation.
What I would buy wont do you any good imo.
Id be writing down the point features of each & then ticking which you think is more important to you.
Add them up at the end & you've answered your own question
Better still buy both
I'll put in a vote for the 6.5 PRC since I just bought a CA Ridgeline in that chambering. My only Browning rifle is a Safari Grade .270 made in 1973, so I'm afraid I can't help you with the Hell's Canyon.