Proof Research Switch Rifle

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by SublimeOutdoors, Oct 26, 2018.

  1. SublimeOutdoors

    SublimeOutdoors Previously VarmintHunterX LRH Team Member

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    Anyone have experience with the new Proof Research Switch rifle? I just ordered one in 6.5 PRC for backcountry use and would love to hear any feedback or reviews.
     
  2. rfurman24

    rfurman24 Well-Known Member

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    I am currently building my own with essentially the same components for quite a bit less. It is a Bighorn action, AG Composite stock, and Proof Barrel. With top of the line components like that there is no doubt it will meet the half moa guarantee.
     
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  3. AZShooter

    AZShooter Well-Known Member

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    I like the idea of using one expensive platform for multiple barrels/chamberings.

    Just watched the video.


    Think Proof's system might be good for someone who shoots out a barrel in competition and wants to put a new one in its place saving money by doing the headspacing/installation without a gunsmith. Savage did it first.....

    Except for being able to switch the bolt face it is no different and a perhaps a bit more time consuming than just having a second barrel made for any rifle. Of course a barrel vise would be necessary but they are not that costly.

    I machined extra barrels myself for two old Ruger tang safety SA rifles for very little cost. I have magnum and non magnum bolts which can be moved to either rifle as needed. With no barrel nut, headspace setting is done once and a witness mark ensures repeatability. Regardless of setup you still have to remove the scope, and stock.

    To me a true switch barrel would be one you could remove the barrel without touching the scope and stock. It would require a non tapered barrel.

    I think the Blaser is about as easy to switch out barrels as it can get. One advantage is the scope is attached to barrel.

    Good article on switch barrels by John Barsness:

    https://gunsmagazine.com/switch-barrel-rifles/
     
  4. reubenski

    reubenski Well-Known Member

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    I have been using Bighorn TL-3s for switch barrels for two years now. I use shouldered barrels with a pair of "flats" machined just behind the muzzle threads to allow a 3/4" crowsfoot wrench to grab the barrel. I don't use witness marks, I just torque the barrel on to 40 ft/lbs. I've tested 20 and 30 ft/lbs as well. All work. I have even shot the barrel hand tight as and produced an excellent 10rd group! Several times I forgot my $30 autozone torque wrench and used a crescent wrench in my truck. The barrels don't know the difference.

    I don't remove the barreled action from the stock or the scope from the receiver. I just remove the bolt, insert a magazine, and clamp the entire rifle in between my legs. This presents the business end of the rifle and the muzzle flats about chest level. I apply the torque wrench and remove the barrel. Screw the new barrel in by hand, and top it off with the torque wrench at 40'ish ft/lbs.

    At this point I have barrels for the same rifle in: 6SLR, 6Dasher(2), 6.5 Grendel, 300BO, 223, and 308. Maintaining zero started to become challenging so I sold my old match rifle and used the funds to buy a 2nd TL-3 and identical chassis and trigger. Now all my barrels will "switch" across both my match rifles.

    The return to zero is outstanding. Over the last two years I have yet to have a head scratcher. Now, the zero from one barrel to the next will obviously vary. The widest variation I have seen from one barrel to the next in zero (has always been windage) is .7 mrad using a 100yd zero. I usually just dial to the zero and hold for elevation and wind using Tremor reticles. I prefer the S&B scopes that have locking turrets for this application. I have also used the offset zero function in my Kestrel 5700 to spit out data using another barrels zero as the baseline (Not preferred).

    I use standard bolt grease on the tenon threads. Thunderbeast brake adapters and their suppressors impeccable return to zero also make my suppressor "switchable" and universal. Being able to take a barrel off in 30 secs has made cleaning and measuring throat erosion/ chasing the lands incredibly easy. The TL-3's swappable bolt heads are the icing on the cake for this setup. Bighorn offers .223, SPC/PPC, .308, and magnum bolt faces making the action universal. I use Accurate Mag 223 AICS pattern mags for 300BO and 223. I trim the plastic front out of the internal sleeve to allow for 2.6" OAL in my 223 loads.

    This rifle application is truly a skin walker!
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  5. reubenski

    reubenski Well-Known Member

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    In this day and age of quality components and prefit shouldered barrels, one can order a stock, trigger, action, and prefit barrel (from Keystone accuracy, Hunts Long Range Supply, or PVA); screw everything together in less than an hour easier than the home AR builder!
     
  6. SublimeOutdoors

    SublimeOutdoors Previously VarmintHunterX LRH Team Member

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    Thanks for the replies guys. My main reasoning for wanting the switch setup was the ability to change calibers on my excursions, ie Africa, without having to bring several rifles. That and the fact that this rifle will be about 5 lbs lighter than any of my current long range setups, bad back and getting older.
     
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  7. AZShooter

    AZShooter Well-Known Member

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    Rubenski,

    I like it!

    I see you have a platform with the scope high enough to clear the barrel nut that is set screwed into position. Great idea on using a set screw, so headspace is same every time. Some savage/proof guys might want to copy it.

    Sure makes things simple and far less costly to use one platform and several barrels.
     
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  8. reubenski

    reubenski Well-Known Member

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    No issues on scope clearance. I just use those super high rings bc, 1) I had them and 2) have grown to like them for positional shooting as your neck and shoulders don't have to be as compressed. I feel like I can maintain head position in the exit pupil easier from a variety of positions this way.
     
  9. Tidus56

    Tidus56 Well-Known Member

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    Rubenski

    I have been doing the savage switch barrel thing for a bit but have plans to swap to a SR3 Bighorn and a TL3 Bighorn. One as a hunting platform and one as a varmint and bench gun.
    Question I have is your barrel set screw. Do you drill the hole in the barrel nut, put it on the barrel, set headspace, and then add the setscrew? Does it damage the threads on the barrel? I am really interested in this setup so I may ask more questions. So please humor me lol
     
  10. reubenski

    reubenski Well-Known Member

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    I have 2 of those. The first I headspaced myself and applied loctite. Then I took it in to my gunsmith and he put in the set screw and cut the muzzle flats. The second barrel he just did all of it. I just had him do it bc he had to cut the machine flats anyway. I don't think it would be difficult to do yourself. Loctite it, then set it into a jig under a drill press, tap and thread the hole, and apply the set screw with loctite. The screw does go into the threads. I don't think it would permanently bigger them up. I'm sure you could wrench the nut off and clean up the threads with a file. But once you have the headspace fixed I don't see why you'd want to.
     
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  11. Tidus56

    Tidus56 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you now I just have to find a decent gunsmith. The one I used to use set the headspace wrong on twice. Thankfully I had all the parts on order to do it myself. Thanks
     
  12. reubenski

    reubenski Well-Known Member

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    You can send it in to my gunsmith. He has pretty quick turn around times and is familiar with this concept.
     
  13. Tidus56

    Tidus56 Well-Known Member

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    Would you mind sending me his info? Thanks