Thoughts on rifle weight and hunting

Weatherby Fan

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Jan 10, 2011
Messages
589
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Maple Ridge, BC, Canada
I have recently purchased a few rifles a bergara ridge and a terrain and they both are fairly heavy i know that weight is a benefit to shooting but wanted to see what some peoples cut off is for a rifle being to heavy the ridge i own is about 10lbs with scope and the tereain is almost 12.5lbs been looking at possibly replacing these guns for something a bit lighter such as a browning xbolt or tikka wanted peoples thoughts on the subject.
A tikka is a great option in a lightweight factory rifle that wont break the bank.

I have had dozens of lightweight and ultra light weight rifles built, a rifle doesn't have to be 10lbs to 20lbs scoped to be accurate, one of my most consistently accurate rifles is a Kimber Mountain Ascent 84L 270 winchester using factory Barnes 130gr TTSX ammo, weighs 6 lbs 6oz scoped, I won the rifle at WSS of BC convention and I had it bedded, the trigger lightened to 2.5lbs and the mag box freed up, and yes it shoots that good every time I take it to the range but being braked really helps with recoil management and not everyone wants a brake on their hunting rifle.

If you want a lightweight hunting rifle for back pack hunting or if you just walk a lot a scoped rifle 7 to 7.5lb range is ideal as its heavy enough you won't need a brake and the recoil at the bench won't give you a concussion (depending on caliber of course) and still light enough you won't have blisters on your shoulder from the strap !

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My latest lightweight build is a Kimber Montana 8400 6.5 PRC, weighs 7lbs 4oz scoped with a Zeiss V4 4-16x44 (22oz) its a pleasure to shoot and carry all day long and I haven't given anything up in the optics department.

1594908011880.png
 

Montana'eer

Formerly 'Threerun'
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Mar 3, 2020
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107
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Montana
My Browning X-Bolt Hells Canyon weighed in at 6lbs 13oz naked out of the box. Add my scope, sling and bi-pod, a butt stock pad and holding 8 extra rounds and I'm a hair over 10lbs. I walk a lot of coulees with that rig. Pleasure to carry and shoot.

 
Joined
Jul 11, 2020
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Southwest Virginia
I had a Bergara Ridge too and felt it was heavy for all day carry so I went to a Tikka T3X Lite. It weights 8 lbs with a Vortex Viper HS-T. It's chambered in 7mm Rem Mag and I feel like I could shoot it better if it had a bit more weight.
 

Aoudad shooter1975

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Sep 4, 2017
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Blanco, Texas
I like light rifles..even better I like short rifles. I find long barreled rifles obnoxious to hunt with. I had a time when I shot 26-28 in barreled rifles--but found that 24 and under--hunted so much better...and have found 22 almost perfect to pack and performance. I think packing perfect rifles would be 8.5 lbs loaded with a 22 in barrel..I'll take a bit shorter over--lighter if I had to choose ...but a 28 in barrel 12.5 lb gun is not something I want to hunt with...but hey everyone mileage vary.
 

Bill Cauley Jr

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Mar 1, 2016
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Tn
I have recently purchased a few rifles a bergara ridge and a terrain and they both are fairly heavy i know that weight is a benefit to shooting but wanted to see what some peoples cut off is for a rifle being to heavy the ridge i own is about 10lbs with scope and the tereain is almost 12.5lbs been looking at possibly replacing these guns for something a bit lighter such as a browning xbolt or tikka wanted peoples thoughts on the subject.
10 pounds with a scope is the cut off for me as far as a hunting rifle
 

Philward

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Joined
Oct 17, 2015
Messages
221
So maybe to look at it a little differently. Basically for hunting rifle weight we have two things - what can you carry? What can you reliably shoot? It is possible to shoot a lightweight rifle very accurately. I would say it is a lot more difficult to accurately shoot a lightweight rifle than a heavier one. So where do we find that balance of enough without too much?

IMO, the Kifaru Gun Bearer buys you 2-5lbs of more rifle weight. Am I carrying my 16lb+ chassis with it to hunt in the mountains - no way. I would say that I can carry my 10lb PRC 26" the same or even easier than a 6lb 20" rifle without it. I am also certain that I can shoot that 10lb rifle a lot more accurately than the 6lb rifle.

For example, I have seen groups shot posted by Joel Russo with his lightweight Terminus action/rifles that are amazing. It is possible. I would also suspect that even he would agree it is easier with more weight/rifle.
Depends, how accurate do you want it to be? 1 MOA? 1/2 MOA? And that depends how far you want to shoot accurately. At 1000yds 1/2 MOA isn't good enough but at 300yds 1 MOA is fine. I can shoot all my hunting rifles that well out to 300 and it's a rare one of those that is over 8lbs. The heaviest rifle(not hunting) is about 10.5lbs and it's a rem 700 LR in 7RM with a 2.5-10 B&L scope.
 

CTK

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Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
317
Location
Memphis, TN
A tikka is a great option in a lightweight factory rifle that wont break the bank.

I have had dozens of lightweight and ultra light weight rifles built, a rifle doesn't have to be 10lbs to 20lbs scoped to be accurate, one of my most consistently accurate rifles is a Kimber Mountain Ascent 84L 270 winchester using factory Barnes 130gr TTSX ammo, weighs 6 lbs 6oz scoped, I won the rifle at WSS of BC convention and I had it bedded, the trigger lightened to 2.5lbs and the mag box freed up, and yes it shoots that good every time I take it to the range but being braked really helps with recoil management and not everyone wants a brake on their hunting rifle.

If you want a lightweight hunting rifle for back pack hunting or if you just walk a lot a scoped rifle 7 to 7.5lb range is ideal as its heavy enough you won't need a brake and the recoil at the bench won't give you a concussion (depending on caliber of course) and still light enough you won't have blisters on your shoulder from the strap !

View attachment 203807

View attachment 203806


My latest lightweight build is a Kimber Montana 8400 6.5 PRC, weighs 7lbs 4oz scoped with a Zeiss V4 4-16x44 (22oz) its a pleasure to shoot and carry all day long and I haven't given anything up in the optics department.

View attachment 203813
What powder did you use with the TTSX 270? I am playing with that combo right now. Great group.
 

DHBWA

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Joined
Jan 14, 2012
Messages
418
Location
SE Washington
I have an older Tikka T3 25-06 that dotes on the Barnes Vortex ammo with the 100gr TTSX.
Downside is that it’s slow...~3050......215A39F7-12D8-4F13-9A46-A67197B23311.jpeg
 

Pro2A

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Joined
May 23, 2009
Messages
197
I like heavier rifles myself. They are easier to shoot LR, especially after you've just climbed up and down mountains. Ever tried to hit something at 1000 yards with your heart pounding, adrenaline going, and a 8# rifle? Yah good luck with that lmao. Heavier rifles just sit in place and rest better. My LR hunting rifle weighs 16# ready to go, and it's about perfect IMO. I never cared for lighter rifles, nor see the need to spend the extra thousands of dollars to go that route. If I need a lighter rifle, I have one for a back up, but it's just that, a back up. I carry the 16# rifle 90% of the time over my 8# rifle. My 16# 7-300 Win Mag is really not that bad to pack up and down the mountains, I'm 34 and weigh 150#
View attachment 203128
Uh, maybe that...." heart pounding, adrenaline going" is due to that 16lb rifle....LMAO... :) :) :)
 

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