Lightweight Elk Rifle Build

spitfire_er

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Aug 2, 2009
Messages
191
Location
Southern MN
Looking for a few suggestions on a few components for an elk rifle I'm building myself for an upcoming MT trip. Will be hiking 7-10+ miles a day so trying to keep weight down. I run my own rifle shop so I can build whatever I want. I have plenty of other rifles that will do the job, but they are for the most part 9+ lbs w/o glass.

This week I'm going to start ordering components.
-Defiance AnTi LA
-AG comp. CAT stock
-Trigger tech special
-Proof barrel
-bdl bottom metal

Leaning towards a 280 improved with an 8 twist barrel. I've shot one of these with one of my competition rifles and it does very well. Otherwise ide go with a 7rm or a 30, but would like to use this for antelope and deer too if I wanted to do more backpack style hunting.

Main question here is what would be a good scope/base/ring combo for light weight? I'm use to building accurate rifles, but I'm usually not worried about building as light as possible. Last PRS rifle I built was 18lbs complete.

In doing a little research, the vx5hd in 3-15x44 looks to be a good bang for the buck at about 22oz, was also looking at a NF 4-14x50 F1 SHV MOAR, but that's about 30 oz.

With the 280 imp and a 0 MOA base i was thinking the Hawkins LR Hybrid rings. That should get me to 800 yards w/o a canted base. I don't plan to shoot past 4-500 yards which I am extremely comfortable shooting accurately. The NF has 90 MOA adjustment, so I wouldn't need a canted base, but I don't plan to shoot that far on elk, but maybe smaller game.

Trying to decide if the extra 8 or so oz is worth it when I'm going to be hiking several miles a day with the NF. I don't care about the CDS dials on the leupold because I can do my own dope.

I figure my rifle will be 6lbs, 8 oz w/o a scope, hawkins hybrid rings 4 oz.

Rifle with NF 8lb 10 oz
With leupold 8 lb 2 oz.
 
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AkBirder300

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Jan 23, 2020
Messages
143
Location
Alaska
Look at the NF compact 2.5-10. My favorite lightweight scope. I think it’s right at 20oz and downright bulletproof. 500 yard on 10x is no issue, and I appreciate the wide FOV on the low end if something pops out from a bush or tree. I’m running one on my lightweight sheep/goat gun this year. At a certain point cutting weight on the scope becomes counter productive to the goal of repeatable accuracy in rough conditions.
 

AkBirder300

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Joined
Jan 23, 2020
Messages
143
Location
Alaska
Look at the NF compact 2.5-10. My favorite lightweight scope. I think it’s right at 20oz and downright bulletproof. 500 yard on 10x is no issue, and I appreciate the wide FOV on the low end if something pops out from a bush or tree. I’m running one on my lightweight sheep/goat gun this year. At a certain point cutting weight on the scope becomes counter productive to the goal of repeatable accuracy in rough conditions.
Should have mentioned used ones generally pop up between 1k and 1200, I have bought both of mine used and have no regrets. Sorry I hate when folks recommend things way outside my price range too 🙏
 

Slick8

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LRH Team Member
Joined
Aug 13, 2012
Messages
676
Location
The Republic of Texas
I'm building a very similar rifle.

AnTi action w/ 20 moa rail
7 SAUM with a .195 throat for 180 vlds.
AG stock in the APR design
CF barrel 1:8, 20 inches and .750 at the muzzle running a TB Ultra 7
VX6-HD 3-18x44 in Hawkins rings.

The chamber will be cut to run the 180's out long.

I'd stick with the VX5. I don't see where the NF offers any advantage over the VX5.
 
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L.Sherm

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LRH Team Member
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Jul 26, 2017
Messages
3,979
Personally ive been around both scopes you mentioned, I like the VX5 better the turrets felt alot more solid.
I know your gonna here the Leupold horror stories but thats my take on them both. I would run a rail the short tube Leupold works way better for getting the eye relief right. I put a VX5 on a sako L61 for a guy I did load development for and it just about never worked to get the eye relief right.
 

spitfire_er

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Joined
Aug 2, 2009
Messages
191
Location
Southern MN
Looking like a
At 19.7 oz might be a great compromise.
 

jpfrog

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Mar 19, 2011
Messages
836
Location
TX
I have the VX6HD on my 280 Sherman (Stiller/Proof/Manners), VX5HD on my 30-06AI (Deviant/Proof/Manners), and Mark 5 for my 6.5SS/308win switch barrel (anTi/Carbon6/Manners). I love all 3, though must admit I haven’t mounted the Mark 5 yet since the rifle is at the smith being built. For the extra weight (only a few ounces) I think it will be much better than the VX line, but it does come with a price.

I got my VX6HD for around 1100 on sale being patient, and my VX5HD I got for well under 1k from @warpig602 on this forum (got my Mark5 from him too). You won’t be disappointed with any of your options, honestly. And if you are, resale value is pretty good so you can tinker with the next one. :cool:
 
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