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Rifle Build

Old 03-24-2014, 12:05 PM
  #1  
Typical Buck
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Default Rifle Build

I am having trouble finding a rifle I want. What would be the ball park in building a bolt action rifle? I'm interested in a 270 with a bull barrel. Sort of like the Tikka T3 Varmint gun. Or is there a rifle like this on the market. From what I read the Varmint from Tikka is no longer imported.
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Old 03-24-2014, 12:33 PM
  #2  
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I would start with a donor 700 action (app. $350), buy a good barrel (app. $400-$500 http://www.shilen.com/pricesRifleBarrels.html), buy a good stock (app. $350 http://www.stockysstocks.com/servlet...-700-HS/Detail), and pay a smith to true the action, adjust the trigger, and screw on the barrel. You can get a pre-chambered barrel or have your smith use his own reamer.

This would get you a rifle that should be much better than a factory rig for somewhere in the $1,500 range.

Last edited by Big Uncle; 03-24-2014 at 12:44 PM.
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Old 03-24-2014, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Uncle View Post
I would start with a donor 700 action (app. $350), buy a good barrel (app. $400-$500 http://www.shilen.com/pricesRifleBarrels.html), buy a good stock (app. $350 http://www.stockysstocks.com/servlet...-700-HS/Detail), and pay a smith to true the action, adjust the trigger, and screw on the barrel. You can get a pre-chambered barrel or have your smith use his own reamer.

This would get you a rifle that should be much better than a factory rig for somewhere in the $1,500 range.
let me warn you, once you do this production rifles will never again scratch that itch, trust me, oh lord how I know this! most of the rifles I still own are either full house customs or have been rebuilt.
RR
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Old 03-24-2014, 05:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Uncle View Post
This would get you a rifle that should be much better than a factory rig for somewhere in the $1,500 range.
Depends on the smith that puts it together. Not all smiths are created equally.

But yeah, before optics, using a donor action, you should comfortably be able to get into a donor action, cheap stock, and reasonable barrel, then have it all put together for around $1500.

But, to be honest, if I were going that route (and I have), I'd consider one of two options:

Using a donor action, I would start on a Savage action so I could forego the cost of having a gunsmith do the installation of the barrel and stock. This is my prefered method for hunting rifles these days. Finish inletting and bedding a stock isn't rocket science, and installing and headspacing Shilen drop in barrels for the Savage are almost too easy. Set of go/no-go gauges and a barrel nut wrench and you're golden.

Using a 700 pattern action, I'd bite the bullet and spend an extra $700-800 on a custom action rather than building on the donor. Starting with a factory action, you'll always want to do something new, truing faces, sleeving for concentricity, heavier recoil lug, etc etc etc... By the time you have a 700 action trued, you've spent more than a custom action. A 700 pattern like the Stiller Predator can still be had for around $1200, basically a turn-key solution for a trued and blueprinted 700 action, and will bolt into the same 700 stocks and barrel patterns as any other 700.

Or, for a whole lot cheaper than any of that, just buy ANY .270win (or .30-06, or .25-06, or any other long action '06 bolt face action) stainless rifle and have a new barrel installed. $400-500ish for the new barrel installed, and you get to sell the take off barrel to recoup some value.
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Old 03-24-2014, 07:50 PM
  #5  
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Originally Posted by Nomercy448 View Post
Depends on the smith that puts it together. Not all smiths are created equally.
That is an understatement. There are too many guys that are full of hot air - just "shake-and bake" experts on everything associated with rifles. A fellow must be very careful and choose wisely.

If anyone wants to eliminate the BS artists they might want to talk to some of the local competitive benchrest shooters.
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Old 03-24-2014, 08:00 PM
  #6  
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I guess I should say, I get the point of giving new guys a chance to develop their craft also, but man, it sucks spending money to be part of a new gunsmith's learning curve!

Definitely have to find a guy experienced with building bolt guns. I used a local, very experienced smith in the late 1990's to rebarrel a spanish mauser, the old shot out barrel shot better than the new one! Then I found out later his specialty was 1911's. If your local bench rest club doesn't have a local smith they recommend, it's well worth the money sending them out.
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Old 03-25-2014, 05:40 AM
  #7  
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If you have a Dicks Sporting goods store near you why don't you just buy a varmint version of your favorite.
http://www.dickssportinggoods.com/sh...VarmintRifles3
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:22 AM
  #8  
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Where would I look into buying or finding the actions? I think I will most likely go with Savage as I am familiar with them somewhat and My brother has around 4 or 5 Savage rifles. @Rich - I am trying to find a 270 in Varmint or Heavy Bull barrel. They are not common and the largest caliber usually made is 308 at least that I could find. I really don't want a .308.
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Old 03-25-2014, 11:46 AM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by JGFLHunter View Post
Where would I look into buying or finding the actions? I think I will most likely go with Savage as I am familiar with them somewhat and My brother has around 4 or 5 Savage rifles.
Occasionally you can find used bare donor actions, but that's hard to count on. I found one through Savageshooters.com like that. Easiest way is to buy a used donor rifle, then sell the take-off barrel. You can choose to keep the original stock, or scrap it.

Steven's 200 also share the same pattern as the Savage 11/111, so be on the look out for those as well.

A NEW Stevens, last I knew, could be had for $300ish or that or less for a USED accutrigger model, then a Shilen drop in barrel for just under $300. You could pay a local smith to install that barrel for $100, or pay around $150-175 for a barrel nut wrench and set of go/no-go gauges and do it yourself.
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Old 03-25-2014, 12:19 PM
  #10  
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Internet advice is worth no more than you pay for it. I would discuss this with the chosen (flesh and blood) smith before spending a dime on donor actions, stocks, triggers, and barrels.

Although they are worth it to the original owner, you will take a beating if you ever sell any custom or semi-custom rifle.

To each his own, and no offense meant, but I don't think I would put money into a Savage. Some Savages shoot very well - and it is mostly due to having a pretty good factory barrel. I don't know how much improvement you will get by replacing the best part of the rifle.
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