Looking for some advice on a 7WSM sheep rifle


Well-Known Member
May 30, 2007
I have a pretty good feel for what I'm trying to do but know that there are those among you who have sorted through these things before and will have good points to offer

I'm trying to put together my parts list and plans for a lightweight7 WSM for backcountry sheep, deer, and elk hunting. My Winchester Coyote 7 WSM controlled round push feed rifle doesn't shoot like it used to so it's the guy for the job.

  • Which would you choose a fluted Krieger # 5 or a # 4? Will Krieger flute a #4 contour barrels and would that be your choice?
  • I would like to use this rifle for elk, deer, and sheep so I'm thinking 168 Bergers and/or 160 Accubonds. How much velocity will I gain or lose by going with either a 24" or 26" barrel? Which barrel length would you choose and why?
  • The trigger currently on the rifle is a Timney (which is OK) but it's too short (not the pull of the trigger but the shoe of the trigger is too short). It doesn't hang down into the trigger guard very far so it always feels weird to shoot the rifle. Is this a problem of the stock being too thick or the trigger being too short? How would you fix this problem?
  • The stock on the rifle is the factory Winchester Coyote laminate which is tough and stable but much too heavy. Who makes a nice light stock to fit this? For an example, I was considering the McMillan Hunter's Edge Ultralight (21-23 oz) but read that it only will accept #3 contour barrels. I like the looks of the McMillan Model 70 Hunting stock and Varmint stocks but don't know their weights. I have a couple of H-S Precisions but think they're maybe a little bit heavier than I was hoping for @ 36oz. I've discovered the Bell & Carlson Medalist Ultralight stock weighs 28oz but the last time I held a B&C was many years ago and it felt like a plastic 2x4. Any suggestions?
How many pounds is 'light weight'? My 280rem has an HS precision stock, 24" #4 barrel and weighs 9lbs. I consider 9lbs about as much as I want to carry all day and be in a general state of readiness. Contrast this where a rifle is in a backpack with the intent to move it from one place to another.

Here's a link to my 'carry' rifle (9lbs):


I need to update the thread though as the rifle now sports a Leupold VXIII with M1 turrets.

Here's a link to my sit 'here' and shoot 'there' rifle (it weighs 12.5lbs.):


To answer your more specific questions....

#5 vs. #4...depends on your definition of 'light weight'. I don't think Krieger will flute a #4 barrel.

24" vs. 26"....You gain about 30fps per inch of barrel. Does 60fps gain in velocity do that much for you? will you be carrying the gun in thick stuff where getting snagged on brush would be a problem?

Timney trigger length...not sure what might have 'caused' this problem. But I'm sure you could get a gunsmith to find a way to lengthen the trigger - perhaps solder a custom fit piece of steel on the face of the trigger. There are also 'bolt-on' trigger shoes that might help.

Stocks...I like the HS Precision. I've handled a B&C recently and really liked it. Stocks really are a personal choice. My recommendation would be to hold them in your hands before you spend your money (or at least be able to return it if it's not what you want)
on my model 70 7wsm, I rebarreled with a 26", and it made it easier to achieve book velocity. If its for open country, a 26 is nice. Closer cover, a 24 would be fine for handling. The 26" will shift more weight forward, which can be counterbalanced with more weight in the rear = heavier gun. so if you want overall light weight, go with the 24. all the manuals use a 24" test barrel so you should be able to make book velocities, or nearly so.

I also have the timney, which I really like. you may find that a new stock fixes the positional problem you're currently having. Be aware, there are at least 2 different bottom metal designs on these winchesters, so the inletting may need some help on a new stock. Regardless, get your stock setup before fooling with your trigger.

good luck and post pics when you get it all set.
I have a little different perspective on Mountain Rifles so you can take it with a grain of salt. My mountain rilfe is a 300 RUM Sendero that weighs 8 1/2 lbs and is topped with 2 1/2 pounds of NF scope and hardware.


My philosophy on moubntain huniting is if you are in shape enough to get your animal out of the mountains, then you should be in shape enough to carry any size rifle around and 2 or 3 pounds shouldn't make a diff.

So having said that, I would go with the 26" #5. That size barrel will weigh about 1oz per inch. My choice would be the B&C Medalist which is full aluminum bedded. They are probably much improved over the ones you handeled years ago. The equivilents that I have handled on Cooper rifles are very good stocks. I'm not sure about the "ultra light", but if you want an ultra light stock, it will be hollow.

Just my $.02,

Good hunting :)

Thank you all for your advice! Especially on the B&D medalist, I've been thinking about getting one of those for a while, I think I'm confident enough now to pull the trigger on getting one for my factory .338 and see if I like it well enough for my new project.

I have a light rifle, 7-6oz, w/14 lupy, mid range gun, man I love packing that thing. U se it for more of my timber hunts, also have a strong 15 yr. old son, he is going to start packing the long gun:D:D I will be like, CAN I barrow my gun kid?
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