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ADMIN submitted a new Article:
Building Your Next Custom Rifle
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I have an older Winchester, 264 WM. Would like to re-barrel and replace stock. what barrel, length do you recommend. And stock. Would like to keep cost reasonable.
Very well written article laying out what a first time builder needs to know in advance of a project - or maybe even a "second time" builder who screwed up the first time, or was screwed up on that first attempt, either by suppliers or a gunsmith.
I put a Boyd's Classic laminated stock on my 6.5 CM Ruger American Predator and it looked and felt MUCH better. Boyd's fish scale checkering was absolutely perfect as well. With a metal Savage 110 trigger guard and a Timney trigger that rifle was a different animal entirely with a quality look and feel to match its 1/2 MOA accuracy.
But now with my 6.5 Cm Browning X-Bolt Pro and its factory carbon fiber stock I am, for the first time, vey happy with a factory stock. I'm 5' 11" so being of "average build" I fit the factory stock very well.
See particulars of this rifle below.
Well, my "semi-custom" 6.5 CM Browning X-Bolt Pro has almost everything I wanted in my mountain rifle for hunting here in Nevada.
1. stainless steel barrel and action
2. factory lapped barrel
3. carbon fiber 360 deg. wrapped stock (not laid up in strips)
4. fluted barrel, spiral fluted bolt and bolt handle
5. bronze Cerakoated finish on metal and stock
6. tough polymer center feed magazine
7. excellent hunting trigger (2 lb. W/ aftermarket spring)
8. optional muzzle brake and a thread protector cap
9. LOCKING bolt (which my former Ruger American Predator did not have)
10. 3 lug bolt for faster cycling
But when my barrel goes I will replace it with a fluted 24" stainless Bartlein barrel with 5R rifling. And it will also be bronze Cerakoated. "Shoot out a stainless hunting rifle barrel?" you ask. Yep. I'll shoot this rifle in varmint competition to get ready for hunting and to do that I'll practice with it. I expect to get about 2,000 rounds through it before I need a new one.
Would I like a nice aftermarket trigger on it? Nope because, as a hunting rifle I don't want less than a 2 lb. pull and Browning's "Feather Trigger" is a great single stage, 3 lever trigger. Very crisp. OK, OK, I did customize the trigger just a bit with the aftermarket spring.
The barrel is the only change I'd want on this rifle. However, out of the box it shoots 1/2 MOA groups with 140 gr. Hornady ELD-M factory ammo. Can't complain about that.
Ok new barrel. Remember we are using my old model 70 action. I see you like Bartlein barrels, ok Want to shoot possibly some where around 140 gr bullets or heavier, so where we want to be with twist. 1-8? Ok I’ll check them out. Once the barrel is finished we will work on the stock which one I’m not sure yet. A new trigger, possibly a Timgey, is a must. We ok with that so far, what you think? Litehiker, I’ll look at some of your suggested requirements
For a 6.5 CM I want to shoot bullet weights from 140 gr. on up. That means to me a 1:7.5 twist so I'm not over spinning the 140s but still OK for 150s or higher.
So far, with 147 gr. Hornady ELD-M rounds the 1:8 twist for 6.5 CM in both my former Ruger American Predator and my current Browning X-Bolt Pro has not shown anything but nice round holes at 200 yards and sub MOA 200 yard groups. That tells me the bullets were stabilized to 200 yards.
The Ruger had a cold hammer forged 5R barrel and the Browning has a standard 6 land/groove cur rifled barrel (factory lapped) and both shoot 140 gr. ELD-M rounds in 1/2" groups. Gotta remember the Browning X-Bolt Pro cost about 4x as much as the Ruger so that accuracy is saying a lot for Ruger's cold hammer forged barrels and innovative actions. (FULL DISCLOSURE- I did have a Timney trigger in the RAP.)
Beyond 200 yards I don't know for sure but one would think a tiny, unnoticeable instability at 200 yards may become big at 800 yards. Yet shooting steel out to 960 yards on a silhouette course shows very good accuracy with 147 gr. ELD-M rounds from two different 1:8 twist 22" barrels. That makes me think 1:7.5 twist is going to be a good compromise for a wide range of 6.5 mm bullet weights.
So yes, I like Bartlein barrels. I can get any twist I want, 5 R rifling if I want it, stainless steel, absolute minimum SAAMI spec size chamber, factory barrel lapping, threaded muzzle, etc. And I'll take every one of the above. I'll get the wife a new fur coat this year to placate her and ease my conscience.