Lightweight Elk Rifle Build

StanleyActual8541

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Jul 9, 2021
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403
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N. Idaho
The 4-32 NX8 is better. I have both. Liking the 4-32.

yeah I got frustrated trying to decide on which direction to go so I just made probably one of my more impulsive financially irresponsible decisions and grabbed that Zero Compromise 5-27x 56.

itll only hurt for a litte while…….hopefully 😂
 

dfrahm

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Oct 3, 2012
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96
Location
Wyoming
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.
The weight of the rifle isn't as big a factor as people think. For example, can the hunter lose 5 pounds between now and the hunt? Will he/she? And after the animal is dead picking that meat up - you don't have a choice on an extra pound - you have to carry it all out. So build a nice rifle that is accurate and that you can shoot and lose the 5 pounds off of 'you'. Only 1 in 100 will do it:)
 

COBrad

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Jan 4, 2004
Messages
1,417
Location
Western Colorado
Interesting thread. Started out on light weight rifles and ending with 12 pounders. My 12 lb, or heavier rifles ars built and used for long range shooting. My primary hunting rifle is a NULA that runs 7 lbs ready to go with a NF 2.5-10x42, according to my bathroom scale. So far I’ve shot it out to 800 yds with sub-moa accuracy. Easily a 500 yard elk rifle shooting over my day pack. For me taking that 5 lbs off the rifle is far more noticeable than 5 lbs off my gut.
 

trophy8

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Dec 28, 2011
Messages
163
Location
Georgetown,TX
Interesting thread. Started out on light weight rifles and ending with 12 pounders. My 12 lb, or heavier rifles ars built and used for long range shooting. My primary hunting rifle is a NULA that runs 7 lbs ready to go with a NF 2.5-10x42, according to my bathroom scale. So far I’ve shot it out to 800 yds with sub-moa accuracy. Easily a 500 yard elk rifle shooting over my day pack. For me taking that 5 lbs off the rifle is far more noticeable than 5 lbs off my gut.
Mine are about 9 lbs.

And I feel ya on the 5 lbs. I love tacos! 🤣
 

cabelasken

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Feb 22, 2021
Messages
132
Location
Nevada
Manner


This is the EHTA.

this ones around 34-36oz I believe with the DBM, adjustable cheek and mini chasis.

This rifles probably gonna end up in. 12lb range. The 26” Proof Sendero and that ZCO 5-27 didn’t help things but thats ok. If I need a lightweight mountain rifle I have that pre-64 I can use.
12 lbs qualifies for a lightweight elk rifle??? My 338 is under 8.5 with sling and loaded with ammo and my 300 WSM is about 8. And I consider these on the heavy side, but I don't use a muzzle break and the recoil of these two is right at my limit.
 

StanleyActual8541

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Jul 9, 2021
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N. Idaho
12 lbs qualifies for a lightweight elk rifle??? My 338 is under 8.5 with sling and loaded with ammo and my 300 WSM is about 8. And I consider these on the heavy side, but I don't use a muzzle break and the recoil of these two is right at my limit.

No I don’t think it is either. It did start that way though. The added weight of this optic didn’t help. Plan was 10lbs-ish. Decided to run a 26” barrel instead of the 22”. Those 2 last minute changes is what put me over the top.
 

spitfire_er

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Aug 2, 2009
Messages
218
Location
Southern MN
As the OP after getting all my parts together, mine should weight in a hair over 8lbs ready to go. I could have opted for a lighter scope and a slimmer profile barrel which would have taken the overall weight down to just under 7 lbs. I think at 8 lbs with the components I have listed prior that is a fairly lightweight rifle for its overall profile.

I know you can get ultra lightweight with 5-6 lbs rifles, but I don't don't want to be shooting a 300 PRC or any magnum in a 5-6 lbs rifles.

I have plenty of capable accurate custom rifles with wood stocks and whatever profile barrel that weight in from 10-13 lbs. Not hard to make a rifle with those weights shoot with good components. I personally would rather not carry 4-5 extra pounds 10 miles a day up and down mountains for a week.

If I had a spot where I posted and didn't do as much hiking or hunted closer to motor vehicle access, a heavier rifles wouldn't be a big deal.

Getting to 8 lbs and under with a sendero or similar contour barrel takes a little more planning and money.

I think for me personally making it right at or really close to 8 lbs and making it a rifle that will hit where I make it at whatever range I feel comfortable shooting is the trick. I hopefully only will need one good shot.
 

trophy8

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Dec 28, 2011
Messages
163
Location
Georgetown,TX
8-9 lb magnums are perfect. Heavy enough to hold steady and be accurate with. Light enough to carry around the mountains. My bore rider 7 mag is a handful without a brake though. My brother has a lightweight 338 win that’s probably 7-7.5 lbs. I sighted it in for him. Screw that thing lol.
 

Wyfox

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Oct 11, 2010
Messages
71
Location
Wyoming
My light weight elk rifle is 9lbs loaded with 4rds of ammo.
300 Norma
Defiance Deviant
26" Proof
Manners MCS-T carbon
S&B PM2 10x
Bare rifle, no optic is 7.5lbs
20210720_123043.jpg
20210720_123225.jpg
 

CBH Australia

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Dec 12, 2020
Messages
350
Location
Australia
I just pulled the trigger on a Zero Comprise 5-27 for my 7 Max build. 100%
impulse buy. Haha. Went from trying to figure out whether I wanted a 4-32 NX8 or a 5-25 MK5 to “screw it” ZCO it is! 😂😂
Well, you have one now. No more wondering what if I went with what I wanted first time round.

Congratulations, long time shooter hoping to learn some long range skills on a budget.

I do appreciate good glass and I have a conundrum of what point is enough.problem is O would not know how to drive this but If I buy an S&B or Tangent Theta , or others then I'm committed to learning.

Nightforce is the obvious "Compromise" but like you I might night the bullet
 

rgrx1276

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Joined
Sep 30, 2014
Messages
61
Location
Fla.
Cheap set up at 7lbs on the dot, with 5 rds under the bolt and scoped.
700 action blueprinted, Hart 1-8 twist with Remington factory contour at 21", Leupold 3-9x33 LRD. Shoots knots with factory Hornady ammo or Varget and 120 Speer gold dots at close to 3000 fps.. 6.5CM. Got QR Talleys on order for bit nicer setup for the scope and base.

 
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