Help me put together a hunting rifle

AKJ

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Joined
Jun 5, 2022
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22
Over the last couple years I have bought and sold a few factory rifles trying to find what I like and to improve on what I already use as my primary hunting rifle. Currently I shoot a plain old Ruger M77 .270 win that was my first rifle and I keep coming back to it. The gun has functioned flawlessly but what I mostly don’t like is overall length of the rifle. Although it only has a 22” barrel, I really dislike busting through brush with it strapped to my pack as it catches every alder.

My idea is to put together a hunting rifle in a XLR magnesium chassis so I can fold the rifle and loose some length. That being said, I plan to run a suppressor so I need to have a short barrel to not defeat the purpose of the folding chassis. I want it chambered in 6.5PRC as I think this will have similar performance to my .270 win and will do better in a short barrel compared to .270 win. I do not plan to shoot past 400 yards, and have never even shot that far at an animal.

The most expensive option is to build full custom. I am thinking zermatt origin action (I would rather go lighter weight but don’t want to spend the money) with a triggertech primary and a short 16-18” barrel. I’m hoping someone can help me here with carbon vs steel barrel and which contour, keeping in mind that I want to keep it lightweight and run a suppressor. Does anyone know what the bolt lift is like on this action? I do not like a bolt that opens with little pressure (snagging on brush) and prefer a locking bolt.

Another option to keep cost down is to buy a factory Christensen Mesa, have the barrel cut down, and drop it in a XLR. Although I have seen a lot of positive feedback on the rifles and the customer service, the many bad reviews scare me. I have handled these in the store and they feel decent to me. The bolt does not seem to lift too terribly easy which I like.

My last idea is to build off a tikka action. Unfortunately all tikka 6.5 PRCs are fluted so cutting a barrel doesn’t seem like an option. I would rebarrel with something shorter and drop it in an XLR. I like that the bolt locks when on safe but dislike how easy the safety can be flipped to fire. This route also won’t save me much from just going full custom.

The biggest downside to all this is when adding the weight of all the components I believe will put me in the 9.5-10lb range. My current rifle is around 8.5lbs and sometimes I wish it was lighter. What I don’t want to do is spend $3000+ on a build and dislike it in the end. Some things are worth the extra weight, but is this one of them? Hopefully you all can give me some good input if you have gone down this road before and what you would do, or suggest other ideas.
Thanks!
 

Formidilosus

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Joined
Oct 22, 2014
Messages
7,629
Over the last couple years I have bought and sold a few factory rifles trying to find what I like and to improve on what I already use as my primary hunting rifle. Currently I shoot a plain old Ruger M77 .270 win that was my first rifle and I keep coming back to it. The gun has functioned flawlessly but what I mostly don’t like is overall length of the rifle. Although it only has a 22” barrel, I really dislike busting through brush with it strapped to my pack as it catches every alder.

My idea is to put together a hunting rifle in a XLR magnesium chassis so I can fold the rifle and loose some length. That being said, I plan to run a suppressor so I need to have a short barrel to not defeat the purpose of the folding chassis. I want it chambered in 6.5PRC as I think this will have similar performance to my .270 win and will do better in a short barrel compared to .270 win. I do not plan to shoot past 400 yards, and have never even shot that far at an animal.

The most expensive option is to build full custom. I am thinking zermatt origin action (I would rather go lighter weight but don’t want to spend the money) with a triggertech primary and a short 16-18” barrel. I’m hoping someone can help me here with carbon vs steel barrel and which contour, keeping in mind that I want to keep it lightweight and run a suppressor. Does anyone know what the bolt lift is like on this action? I do not like a bolt that opens with little pressure (snagging on brush) and prefer a locking bolt.

Another option to keep cost down is to buy a factory Christensen Mesa, have the barrel cut down, and drop it in a XLR. Although I have seen a lot of positive feedback on the rifles and the customer service, the many bad reviews scare me. I have handled these in the store and they feel decent to me. The bolt does not seem to lift too terribly easy which I like.

My last idea is to build off a tikka action. Unfortunately all tikka 6.5 PRCs are fluted so cutting a barrel doesn’t seem like an option. I would rebarrel with something shorter and drop it in an XLR. I like that the bolt locks when on safe but dislike how easy the safety can be flipped to fire. This route also won’t save me much from just going full custom.

The biggest downside to all this is when adding the weight of all the components I believe will put me in the 9.5-10lb range. My current rifle is around 8.5lbs and sometimes I wish it was lighter. What I don’t want to do is spend $3000+ on a build and dislike it in the end. Some things are worth the extra weight, but is this one of them? Hopefully you all can give me some good input if you have gone down this road before and what you would do, or suggest other ideas.
Thanks!


There are no issues with a 270win and short barrels- all chamberings average between 20-30 fps loss in MV per inch of barrel.

A fluted Tikka barrel can be cut down and threaded without issue.
 
Joined
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Sounds to me your best option is a factory tikka 6.5 prc cut down and thrown in xlr chassis. I have a chassis build very similar to what your describing with a 21" barrel and 5 inch Suppressor. That folder strapped to a pack is a dream to hunt with.
 
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z987k

WKR
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Sep 9, 2020
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Buying the tikka and cutting it is by far the cheapest, as said above.

If you want to build your own, I don't think there's a cheaper 700 action than the mac bros. I don't think you'd save much if any weight on it over the tikka.

My tikka in an XLR MG 4.0 chasis(with a custom barrel, preferred .750 taperless contour) is 8.6lbs ready to hunt.

Stay away from the carbon barrels as they're heavier than steel barrels unless you're going to run a rather thick steel barrel. Or maybe you want the weight, but then you can just save money and go Aluminum chassis instead of spending more on the heavier barrel.
 
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AKJ

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Joined
Jun 5, 2022
Messages
22
There are no issues with a 270win and short barrels- all chamberings average between 20-30 fps loss in MV per inch of barrel.

A fluted Tikka barrel can be cut down and threaded without issue.
I had considered sticking with .270 but I could find almost no info of performance in a short barrel. If I end up not liking the build, I imagine a short 6.5PRC will be much easier to resell as well. But now you got me thinking again because I do like my .270…

As for the barrel, I have heard that cutting and threading in the flutes can cause channels that blow gas back at the shooter while the can is on. Is this not the case?
 
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AKJ

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Jun 5, 2022
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Buying the tikka and cutting it is by far the cheapest, as said above.

If you want to build your own, I don't think there's a cheaper 700 action than the mac bros. I don't think you'd save much if any weight on it over the tikka.

My tikka in an XLR MG 4.0 chasis(with a custom barrel, preferred .750 taperless contour) is 8.6lbs ready to hunt.

Stay away from the carbon barrels as they're heavier than steel barrels unless you're going to run a rather thick steel barrel. Or maybe you want the weight, but then you can just save money and go Aluminum chassis instead of spending more on the heavier barrel.
Does that weight include a suppressor?

Good to know on the barrel. I’m trying to keep the weight down. Thanks!
 

5811

WKR
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Jan 25, 2023
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Any reason not to cut the barrel on your Ruger down and thread, or have a new barrel made in 6.5prc if that's your interest?
 
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AKJ

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Jun 5, 2022
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Any reason not to cut the barrel on your Ruger down and thread, or have a new barrel made in 6.5prc if that's your interest?
I’d want to run a suppressor with a short barrel to reduce recoil and muzzle blast, making the overall length long again. The idea of using a folder is to make the gun shorter and more packable. The XLR does not fit a ruger. Wrong bolt face diameter for 6.5PRC.
 

NSI

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Western Wyoming
  1. Buy a factory stainless Tikka CTR 6.5 PRC with a 20" barrel. This takes care of short (20") and threaded (5/8x24)
  2. Send the barreled action to Kampfeld, LRI, or Twisted Barrel for aggressive fluting ~$140.
  3. Drop it in an XLR chassis if you must.
  4. Sell the stock and mag to recoup $150.

-J
 
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Messages
7,915
  1. Buy a factory stainless Tikka CTR 6.5 PRC with a 20" barrel. This takes care of short (20") and threaded (5/8x24)
  2. Send the barreled action to Kampfeld, LRI, or Twisted Barrel for aggressive fluting ~$140.
  3. Drop it in an XLR chassis if you must.
  4. Sell the stock and mag to recoup $150.

-J

Anyone do this and have good results? Id be worried about aggressively fluting a chambered hammer forged barrel wrecking accuracy but I've just had bad luck with heavily fluted barrels in general.
 

NSI

WKR
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Western Wyoming
Anyone do this and have good results? Id be worried about aggressively fluting a chambered hammer forged barrel wrecking accuracy but I've just had bad luck with heavily fluted barrels in general.
Marty claims it's not an issue. I will do with a 6.5cm and a .223 CTR in a few weeks and report back with first hand intel.

-J
 

Formidilosus

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As for the barrel, I have heard that cutting and threading in the flutes can cause channels that blow gas back at the shooter while the can is on. Is this not the case?

No. It works perfectly fine.
 
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Tom-D

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Sep 11, 2023
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Marty claims it's not an issue. I will do with a 6.5cm and a .223 CTR in a few weeks and report back with first hand intel.

-J
Hey mate Did you end up having this done? Curious to see how it went
 
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