True up a Rem 700 or buy a custom action?

Alex Wheeler

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2017
Messages
794
Location
Montana
There are a couple ways to look at it. A 700 that been trued properly will have an action face and lug seat square to the bolt bore as well as concentric threads. The bolt lugs and face are also square to the bolt body. The main accuracy gain here is even lug contact. You can see the accuracy gain after fixing lug contact even in a hunting rifle. What you will still have is a the stock ignition which is the other part of an action that has a big effect on accuracy. You can have the shroud worked on and firing pin bushed to get the ignition up to par. You can also time a 700 to be every bit as smooth as the best customs. You will want a good recoil lug double pinned to the action so when you get a new barrel the lug will be in exactly the same spot and not cause a bind in the bedding. I also like to use 8-40 screws and double pin the rail on the magnums. It all adds up. The flip side is that most customs are not that good out of the box anyhow. So many smiths put work into them as well. In some cases your better off starting with a 700. However the one I usually recommend to guys thinking of doing the 700 is the defiance tenacity. They stand alone in that price range imo. The ignition design is good and they are straight.
 

jonboatjockey

Active Member
Joined
Jan 26, 2020
Messages
32
Location
Montana
If i wanted to have the same features on a 700 action as I have on the tenacity it would have been equal or even a little more expensive to have the machine work done on the 700. Custom actions have come a long way and are very reasonable IMHO. Good luck with your project!
 

BountyHunter

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Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Messages
5,245
Location
Wilmington NC
After probably too much stress and anxiety over all the choices of this vs that, I think I've finally decided on my course of action ... thank you all for the input and advice you provided.

Ultimately I decided I want to build on a short action, so my Rem 700 LA will be put up for sale. I haven't 100% decided on which action i will go with yet, but the Defiance Tenacity is likely at the top of the pile, with the WTO Claymore and Big Horn Origin also in the mix.

I plan to use the WTO switchlug system to get me a few different rifles until I can build them out individually down the road. I'm going to start with a simple 6.5 Creedmoor, then add a 7mm SS, and then maybe a .223 to allow for cheaper trigger time / varminting. I will use a Proof CF barrel for both the 6.5 and the 7mm as those will both be hunting setups.

I'm starting off with the 6.5 because my first hunt is likely going to be Pronghorn and I'll go from there, adding in the 7mm SS when I get up to Elk. The 6.5 should serve me well for a couple years at least. I'm thinking about putting a Mark 5 3.6-18 on top of it, but I also really like my 3-15x gen 2 PST so I need to get to a store and compare them side by side.

Thanks again for your help, I appreciate it!

The Origin is the only action that allows you to do that and with a simple torque on pre fit shouldered barrels (not barrel nut). Simply change the bolt head, purchase the new barrel with shoulder already chambered. However you can use the barrel nut barrels if you want. ONLY 4 actions out there have tolerances tight enough to allow a smith to do that (Bighorn Arms, American Rifle Company, Impact Precision and Curtis Customs) and the Origin is the only one under a $1000. Also comes with the pinned 20 MOA rail.

fluted bolt body
– floating and interchangeable bolt head
– controlled round feed
– fully enclosed mechanical ejector
– Remington style feed lips
New features for the ORIGIN are:
– pinned recoil lug
– swept bolt handle
– DLC coated bolt heads
– Salt bath nitride receiver and bolt body
Standard compatibility options include but are not limited to:
– Savage small shank pre-fit barrels
– Remington Model 700 inlet stocks and chassis
– Remington Model 700 aftermarket triggers
– Hinged floor plate internal box magazines
– AICS style detached box magazines (not AW)
– All of Bighorn Arms bolt knobs (5 options)
The ORIGIN action is typically available in 2-6 weeks. Short actions $825 Long actions $925
 

BountyHunter

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Messages
5,245
Location
Wilmington NC
There are a couple ways to look at it. A 700 that been trued properly will have an action face and lug seat square to the bolt bore as well as concentric threads. The bolt lugs and face are also square to the bolt body. The main accuracy gain here is even lug contact. You can see the accuracy gain after fixing lug contact even in a hunting rifle. What you will still have is a the stock ignition which is the other part of an action that has a big effect on accuracy. You can have the shroud worked on and firing pin bushed to get the ignition up to par. You can also time a 700 to be every bit as smooth as the best customs. You will want a good recoil lug double pinned to the action so when you get a new barrel the lug will be in exactly the same spot and not cause a bind in the bedding. I also like to use 8-40 screws and double pin the rail on the magnums. It all adds up. The flip side is that most customs are not that good out of the box anyhow. So many smiths put work into them as well. In some cases your better off starting with a 700. However the one I usually recommend to guys thinking of doing the 700 is the defiance tenacity. They stand alone in that price range imo. The ignition design is good and they are straight.
Yes but can you true one up in 15 minutes? :)
 

SteelBanger

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2019
Messages
75
Location
IL
The Origin is the only action that allows you to do that and with a simple torque on pre fit shouldered barrels (not barrel nut). Simply change the bolt head, purchase the new barrel with shoulder already chambered. However you can use the barrel nut barrels if you want. ONLY 4 actions out there have tolerances tight enough to allow a smith to do that (Bighorn Arms, American Rifle Company, Impact Precision and Curtis Customs) and the Origin is the only one under a $1000. Also comes with the pinned 20 MOA rail.

fluted bolt body
– floating and interchangeable bolt head
– controlled round feed
– fully enclosed mechanical ejector
– Remington style feed lips
New features for the ORIGIN are:
– pinned recoil lug
– swept bolt handle
– DLC coated bolt heads
– Salt bath nitride receiver and bolt body
Standard compatibility options include but are not limited to:
– Savage small shank pre-fit barrels
– Remington Model 700 inlet stocks and chassis
– Remington Model 700 aftermarket triggers
– Hinged floor plate internal box magazines
– AICS style detached box magazines (not AW)
– All of Bighorn Arms bolt knobs (5 options)
The ORIGIN action is typically available in 2-6 weeks. Short actions $825 Long actions $925
The Big Horn Origin was on my short list but I ultimately went with the Terminus Zeus. I liked the features of the Zeus way more than the origin, but granted it is quite a bit more expensive. Mostly I wanted simple barrel swaps and didn't want to to mess with having to torque barrels on, I originally planned to use the WTO switchlug on either the Tenacity or a Tikka action, but decided on the Zeus for many reasons, but the built in barrel swap feature (2 set screws for retention) sold me.
 

SteelBanger

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2019
Messages
75
Location
IL
If i wanted to have the same features on a 700 action as I have on the tenacity it would have been equal or even a little more expensive to have the machine work done on the 700. Custom actions have come a long way and are very reasonable IMHO. Good luck with your project!
This all day, and thank you. Sure you can put $250 into a basic true up on a 700 action and come out with a half minute gun, but that's not guaranteed. I priced out everything I wanted to do on my 700 and would have been over $1K ... granted I wanted all the bells and whistles so if you're not as picky you can certainly do it a lot cheaper.

Personally I'm a firm believer in the "buy once, cry once" philosophy so that's what I did with the Zeus action, I have 4 barrels planned for it already and those barrel swaps can be done in 60 seconds with nothing more than an inch pound wrench ... can't wait to get it all built!
 

Alex Wheeler

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2017
Messages
794
Location
Montana
Yes but can you true one up in 15 minutes? :)
No I cant.
Regarding your other comment, Kelbly's for example have held not only headspace and thread tolerance but also thread timing specs so close I chamber them without the action and the engraving will line up when torqued as well. They have been making them for much longer than any of the 4 you mentioned above have existed. Not to mention Bat, and Borden, they hold tenon specs like that as well ( not timing), and also were there long before the ones you mentioned. Its a nice feature but only if the important things are right first.
 
Last edited:

SteelBanger

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2019
Messages
75
Location
IL
No I cant.
Your also a little off on your comments above. Kelbly Pandas for example have held not only headspace and thread tolerance but also thread timing specs so close I chamber them without the action and the engraving will line up when torqued as well. They have been making them for much longer than any of the 4 you mentioned above have existed. Not to mention Bat, and Borden, they hold tenon specs like that as well, and also were there long before the ones you mentioned. Its a nice feature but only if the important things are right first.
The defiance actions also hold exact tolerances if I'm not mistaken.
 

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