Rifle Build - Help me decide

Satchamo

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Feb 27, 2018
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Indiana
So I've been back and forth and back and forth about how I want to go about building a new rifle. I'm looking to build a long range hunting rifle in 300 win mag. I want the finished weight of the gun with optics to be around 8-9 lbs. I already have the scope and it's an HST 4-15 and I believe they're 20 oz so I'd rough guess my optics weight will be 30 oz or so.

That being said, I have 3 options bouncing around in my head and initially had a budget of $1500 in my head. Here they are with what I believe to be their pros and cons:

Build off of Rem 700:
Pros:
-initial action purchase is cheaper (I've found SS LA Magnum for $340)
-Unlimited possibilities and accesories
-way more affordable stock options
-no limitations for COAL like a Tikka

Cons:
-needs trigger
-blueprinting is not cheap. I got a quote of around $1000 from LRI for blueprinting, rebarreling, fluting bolt, installing tactical handle, new scope base threads, timing bolt handle, new pinned lug, threaded barrel for brake and beadblasting it all. I know all this isn't necessary for the rifle to perform but it's what I want so I'm not skimping on it to decide I want it later.
-weight? I'm not certain here but I have to assume a till action is lighter than a Remmy but please correct me if I'm wrong.

Total cost: $2000 or so
Action: $340
Stock: $200
Barrel blank $250 (if I'm crafty)
Trigger: 200
Smith work: 800-1000 depending on my options


Tikka build
Pros:
-No action truing or tons of work needed to make it shoot so way less of a Smith bill. Right now I'm looking at around $500 to rebarrel, thread the muzzle and flute the bolt and I'd be happy. I might consider bead blasting it as well.
-Stock trigger is serviceable
-light. I'd have no issue keeping a till within my weight criteria.

Cons:
Higher up front cost for donor rifle ($600 from Whitaker's)
-slow factory barrel so I'd probably rebarrel it right away as I want to shoot the 215s. Barrel blank from tikka performance is 250 + $500 in work
-COAL limitations. I am a reloader and the idea of being limited by magazine length is annoying. I know there are AICS options, but I don't really like those setups for hunting as I don't need to be able to rack off 6 shots. Maybe they offer shorter aics magazines? Idk, I haven't researched much here. But regardless, that's probably $250 for new bottom metal and aics, or shoot the smaller bullets.
-stock options are way slimmer. Stockys has a carbon model I like and if I go this route I'd probably get but it's $567 vs $200 options on the 700 I liked.

TOTAL COST: $2100 or so
Gun: 600
Stock: 567
Barrel: 250
Smith work: 500
Bottom metal: 250

Option 3: buy a Christensen arms mesa and go shoot.

Pros:
-cheapest option $1200
-light
-nice looking
-no coal limitations

Cons
-it won't be "mine". I honestly enjoy the build process so bypassing it while saving money, isnt as much fun.
-stock is a sporter style which isn't want I want.

So anyways, here we are. I really didn't want to spend over $1500. I know there are ways I can save money here and there in the classifieds, or by going with less options at the Smith but I can't help but think I wouldn't end up happy and I'd just spend what ever money I saved later... So I'm willing to save up money, but the only issue is I'I building this to hunt with this fall and I've already offloaded my other 2 rifles to afford this so time is of the essence.

Feel free to pick apart my plans and tell me where I can save $, where I'm totsllt off base or where I should spend MORE money. And of course let me know what you'd do!
 

Canhunter35

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Jun 13, 2017
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IMO you’re comparing apples to oranges a bit. With the 700 action you’re doing the works the tikka you plan on a barrel swap. You should have 3.7” mag to work with, a tikka just isn’t your best bet for a 300win mag.

A bolt can be fluted and different handle installed later. I would have an action blue printed, barrel chambered and threaded for brake and cerakote everything as the essentials. It’s good stuff and great for bad weather. But it all adds up.
As for a trigger, I really like my Calvin elite, I would go for 700 or 700 clone and run one of those. How you’re describing your funds and needing a rifle by fall, buy the Mesa and upgrade it later. Get the stock, trigger, barrel you want when funds allow, until then shoot the heck out of it.
Another option is a b14 and upgrade as you go. You don’t want a sporter stock, what about a b14 hmr, vertical grip, then change the barrel to a cf down the road and cut weight?
 
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257Tony

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Apr 8, 2013
Messages
915
Location
Utah
If the folks at tikka would put a proper twist barrel, and a longer mag box in their rifles they would probably take over the world.

I'd look for a used semi custom that you like, and have it cerakoted in the color combo you want. I just don't see you getting what you want with a fresh build without going way over budget.

Another factory option would be a xbolt hells canyon long range, they are around $1200, have a 3.6" mag box, and fast twist barrels. Already has the brake and factory cerakoted. You could have the stock dipped or colored different to make it your own.
 

Canhunter35

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Jun 13, 2017
Messages
2,976
If the folks at tikka would put a proper twist barrel, and a longer mag box in their rifles they would probably take over the world.

I'd look for a used semi custom that you like, and have it cerakoted in the color combo you want. I just don't see you getting what you want with a fresh build without going way over budget.

Another factory option would be a xbolt hells canyon long range, they are around $1200, have a 3.6" mag box, and fast twist barrels. Already has the brake and factory cerakoted. You could have the stock dipped or colored different to make it your own.
It amazes me that sako/tikka is still putting 11twist barrels in their 30cals. I have a 30 year old sako av in 300wby and my cousin has one in 300wm and both have 10twist barrels...somewhere along the line they went backwards
 
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Deleted member 103481

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I would probably build a savage at your price point. Takes away a ton of smithing cost.

Or buy a semi custom already built as suggested.

Of your options
Probably buy the Christensen and upgrade it later to make it yours. I have a hard time understanding Remington builds if you don't already have action at this point. You could almost get into one of the custom actions that takes pre fits for the same money.
 

WeiserBucks

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Aug 16, 2016
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1,783
If you like the Tikka as much as I do and want a nice, light .30 , do a 300 WSM . No mag length restrictions.
 

FEENIX

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Dec 20, 2008
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Great Falls, MT
It amazes me that sako/tikka is still putting 11twist barrels in their 30cals. I have a 30 year old sako av in 300wby and my cousin has one in 300wm and both have 10twist barrels...somewhere along the line they went backwards

I agree, my SAKO M995 in .300 WM has a 24" 1:11" and it will be have 1"8" or faster when it is time to re-barrel.
 

BEEMAN

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Oct 20, 2011
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My 300 Win Mag finished at 10 lb 2 oz. Borden action, jewel, #3 Brux, Holland brake, NF SHV, McMillian game scout. Over your $1500 limit but around the weight you’re looking for. I think I’d look through the classifieds or collect the parts you need for a build. It’s to bad you are on such a tight timeline. If you are patient and collect the parts over time there are deals to be found.
 
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Deleted member 25294

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I have two long range hunting rifles that I put together for a lot less than what you are planning to spend, one a 700 with a "Remage" prefit and the other a Tikka

You can get a 700 Remage prefit with a barrel nut from McGowen for about $350, and if you don't have the tools to install it yourself a smith should be able to do it for about $40. No need to blue print, I've done two of these on 700 actions and accuracy has been 1/2 MOA or better.
A good way to loose weight aside from fluting the barrel, handle, and bolt is to replace the firing pin and shroud assembly with aluminum from Pacific Tool and Gauge.
My 28 Nosler Remage with a 26" fluted magnum contour barrel weighs 8.6 lbs scoped.

I personally love the Tikka action, if you went that route get a 300 win mag or 7mm rem and rebarrel to 300 WSM. You can fit the WSM case in the tikka LA magnum magazine, although the case will rub a little.
I did a 25" factory contour fluted barrel, with a carbon fiber stock and it weighs 5.8 lbs.
Carbon Six makes a Tikka prefit for $700, that would easily meet your weight requirements and should be pretty cheap for your smith to install.
 

jjmp

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Dec 4, 2007
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central wisconsin
Skip option 1 not enough time, skip option 2 & 3 buy #2 option from mud runners list , shoot the heck out of it and you have your parts n pieces for your build , sell off what you don't want and use the time to talk to more gunsmiths , your really not thinking far enough ahead , you can still have what you want but it'll take longer then we all figure , pm me if you wish , lots more to think on but it can happen and be yours to where your totally happy .
 

IndianaMatt

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Dec 9, 2017
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205
Location
Indiana
Ok I didn’t have time to read all the comments but from my experience $1000 to blueprint is very costly.
I would look at PTG for a blueprinted action with a PTG bolt.
I’m guessing the total cost would be around $800.
 
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