building a new rifle


Well-Known Member
Jun 14, 2008
Ok a loaded question I know.

But I am looking for some imput/.advice suggestions, opinions!!

I want to build a 7mm08( firm on that caliber), I want to keep it small, and easy to shoot to 300 yards( yes not that far) but its for a walking rifle to hunt in big woods! so no open flat land gun! so 26 inch tubes and heavy bbls are out! not a long range build! just a good hunting rifle!

I am not looking to make it an ultra light gun, but would like to keep it on the lighter to heavy!

I am thinking a 20 inch barrel,( but not set on that, could go longer or shorter)
but looking for advice on what size barrel contour, and brand barrel! and if I want it fluted or not!! and what lenth you would!

I am thinking about getting a model 7 remington action for this build up!!, or just a factory model 700. But I am leaning towards a stainless steel action.

Next, I want to have it coated to keep it weather friendly in all weather, so what coating do you recommend?

and last, what stock, I have several guns with McMillian's and love them all! never a problem.

But they have so many models anymore, what models do you's like for a light field gun??
or just in genneral, so many different stock makers out there any more, would one of them be worth a try!

and all in all, I would like this gun to look custom, so any unique option's that are actually functional, please feel free to say them!

I have a good smith/builder at hand, but plan to buy the parts, and have him assemble for me.

I know in the end, all will be to mine to decide, but I found that some times reading what others would build, gives me some new thoughts and can help me decided.

So how about some ideas guys!
I would just buy a Stiller Action, McMillan Edge BDL stock(or Classic)#3 Hart Barrel or #4 fluted. I would go with 22" so you can still maintain good velocities with 140's. Rifle will come in about 6lbs 4oz with that configuration. IMO buying a custom action is the way to go. Ultimately, you may have less money in it because you don't have the truing fees plus you potentially have a higher re-sale value.
For a bush gun, I would be inclined to go with a .308 especially if distances will be under 600 yards. You have a wide variety of ammo to choose from, 110gr all the way up to 240gr I believe, which should satisfy any hunting situation.
The McMillan HTG stock may be a good choice to keep things on the lighter side and a 20"-24" medium contour, fluted barrel would do the trick just fine.
Other than that it sounds like you know just what you want, good luck with the build.
one guy mentioned a stiller. If you're considering a custom action, take a hard look at the Surgeon RSR ACTION. The price is nearly the same and its got some even nicer features. I just bought one. They were right on schedule with their quoted lead time, which worked out the same as my Brux barrel, 6-8wks. Actions - Surgeon Rifles

of course a model 7 or 700 short action would be fine too, especially if you already have one "extra" on hand, or you can pick up an older used one, cheap.

I did that awhile back with a 700 ADL long action. bought the gun for $350, replaced the barrel and kept the rest. I did pay a bit more for labor although we decided the action was "good enough" for my purpose at the time. Mostly it just needed to be cleaned up and toss out the rusty pitted barrel.

get the highest quality barrel you can. Brux was a very good guy, and honest with his price and lead time. Welcome

find a top notch gunsmith and pay him when the gun is ready. There are several good ones on this site, most keep quite busy. You could also call Jerry Newman. Home

BJ at Sears usually keeps macmillan stocks, triggers and other stuff on inventory. - Home

for scopes, this is the place. subscribe to the optics section and keep your eyes peeled for a leupold vxII or better, 3-9 or similar for your setup. Light weight talley rings or a 1 piece dednutz gamereaper mount will be super reliable, not tool heavy like a picatinny setup. I'm getting away from the leupold dovetail rings, too much opportunity for movement. scope distortion and misalignment there.

get a nice trigger job or aftermarket trigger. 3Lbs is nice.
Thanks guys , now you got me thinking about custom actions, I do like both that you listed, and have to admit, I leaning toward that surgeon.
BUT, I am not sure I need to go that way, since I am not looking to build a very long range rifle, and as suck, think to keep cost lower maybe stick with a factory rem action, yes, I even have a spare one on hand, I was planning.

as for scopes, I am partial to leupolds, own several, and never had a problem, I stick to the vxIII's though!

which will bring me to ask, do you thinka custom action is going to be a bigger benifit to me on a rifle i only plan to shoot to 300 yrds or less??? or stick to a factory action, being good enought!

I plan to built a long range gun, latter on, and will definietly use a custom action on that.

Please keep your ideas coming, and suggestions, I love to hear what others think is the way to go, keeps my wheels turning!!
your action is probably good enough; a gunsmith could check it out for you. Or, you could send it to one of the many high quality barrel makers and they could true it up and chamber/install the barrel. That's what I did with my model 70 action, sent it to pacnor. Check it out, they have a 7mm 1:9 blank at 22.5" right now $180, 20% off = $144!! it might be too heavy but call them to see if it will work for your action. PAC-NOR Barreling, Inc. - Barrels We Make

several companies have "in stock" barrels, which may save you time/money.

You mentioned wanting a "custom" look. Brux has a super slick interrupted fluting that he will do on a fairly light contour in chrome-moly (regular not stainless). He only sells blanks, you'll need another gunsmith to chamber and fit it to your action.
thanks for the advice, I have a Hart barrel with that flutting, and it looks way cool, But man its sucks to clean, but a small price to pay!

I am wanting a SS bbl, and have a good smith to check, and tru and chamber barrel /fit the action for me,
but my wheels are turning on a custom action as well,
SO looking for pros and con's, and in general imput for others on here!
Like I said, never know what you want some times till you see or hear of one others have!! or what they would have done if doing again!
a lot of guys on here have tons of first hand experience, so asking here you get the best imput from a good source of guys!
About 20 yrs ago, I wanted a 7mm-08 light weight gun. A friend sold me a Mauser 98 action with a custom bolthandle, Buehler safety, and Timney trigger for $300. I had a smith install a featherweight chrome moly Douglas barrel and Lee Six stock. I put a mini 2-7X Burris on top. I love this rifle, altho the action is heavier than I expected. It is very accurate. I would not recommend a fluted barrel. That adds about $150 to the cost and looks nice, but is not practical. I think a 700 action would work fine.
Thanks , Gene.

I currently have a light weight 7mm08, and looking to build a spare( I like to take 2 guns on a out of state trip, atleast) thus my reason for the caliber, to keep things simple.

I like flutted looks of them, and agree no real reason to buy other than looks, and a very small amout of lighter weight!

I had my first one built, and ordered a flutted barrel, but when I got the call the gun was ready, the smith put the WRONG barrel on it, and nOT a flutted barrel as I wanted,

But I took the gun to his range, and shot it, and was almost a one hole shooter,( and still is) as IS!

He offeder to swap the barrel for me, but it shot so good, I couldn't justify doing so. firm believer in don't screw with something that works !

and ever since then, I have wanted what I had ordered, it has been itching at me you can say,

so my quest to build another one, with what I want is now getting the better of me, need to get it out of my system, and who doesn't need another rifle?

Keep the ideas coming guys, I will not be building till late spring, so be open to hear what you all think till then.
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