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I am looking to build me a rifle from catalog order parts. What do you suggest I start with. In the order of, need to finish. As this will be my first I don't intend on spending gobs of money, but want a "decent" rifle. Would like it to be a .358 cal or bigger. For black, and grizzly bear.
 

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I have a donor action waiting. Hopefully the experts will show up and impart their wisdom upon us.

ZM
 

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bigchast1 said:
I am looking to build me a rifle from catalog order parts. What do you suggest I start with. In the order of, need to finish. As this will be my first I don't intend on spending gobs of money, but want a "decent" rifle. Would like it to be a .358 cal or bigger. For black, and grizzly bear.
There is no inexpensive way - that I have found - to make a custom gun that is "decent" (sub-MOA groups and fits me well). I am wondering what cartridges you are considering for grizzly bear. This is what I would go with:

In thirty-five caliber, the Whelen is as small a cartridge as (this man) would go for Grizzly bear. You will need a strong, long or magnum action to fit this and larger cartridges. Depending on the terrain you will be travelling, a 22 to 26 inch barrel will give you good performance from any of the larger cartridges.
Maybe someone would like to chime in with their forvorite, inexpensive parts starting with action, barrel (my favorite is Douglas), stock, sights, trigger and safety. The machine-work is best left to professionals as is the blueing, engraving and checkering. Finish work on the stock and final fit are things that I prefer to do myself but then I also lap the lugs and raceways myself. It just depends on your talents and wallet size.

PaulS
 

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For a "decent" first gun, I would use an Adams and Bennet barrel from Midway, currently $104 for a .35 Whelen in F34 contour. Not near as nice as a Douglas, but lots cheaper. They are pre-threaded and short chambered. You will need a chambering reamer, and go and no go headspace gauges. The reamers cost about $90, but there are several online sites where you can rent them, usually about $15 for a week. Some of these rental places also rent the headspace gauges. If you are going to mount a scope, you will need a jig to locate the holes, about $50, or pay someone else to do it. A decent mount and rings will run you about $50, I prefer the Burris Signature rings, because they automatically correct any misalignment problems. A Hogue overmolded stock will set you back about $100 bucks, but they are far nicer than most of the other composite stocks, with a true drop in fit. A Bold or Timney trigger will run between $30 and $50, depending on model. For a first gun I would buy a bolt that is already forged for scope clearance, you can find them on the auction sites for about $30. As far as tools, you will need a barrel vise and an action wrench. Don't scrimp here, buy good ones. Brownell's is my first choice, B-Square is second. There is no third. Crappy tools will destroy what you are trying to do.



This is a .280 Rem I am just finishing up. Not counting the original donor rifle (a previously sporterized 1909 Argentine) I have about $275 in it.
 

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You could build a savage rifle and the cost would be alot less. The barrels and the bolt face are easier to change than most other rifles. If you do a web search there are forums and web sites devoted to savage rifles
 

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Just finished a 25-06 that looks pretty much identical to the .280 above. It was a tossup between a 25-06 and a .270, but the 25-06 barrels were on sale for $79, made it hard to say no! Used a Yugo 98k action, all metal dark black parkerized, with the same Hogue stock. The only thing that looks different from the .280 is I used a black nylon padded sling. Haven't shot it yet, but I have high hopes for this one!
 

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Took it out and test fired this morning with 120 gr Hornady hollowpoints and IMR4831. Avg velocity was 3160 fps and best 5 shot group was 11/16". I think I can shrink that down with some RL22, cases are tumbling now!
 

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Hi Bear,

Hmm I see you are spreading your building corruption about :-D

Just how many have you built up now?

Nice to see you here, will catch up with you oin the C&R forum.

KP
 

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Hi Kev, 6 so far, all different caliber, all using the -06 case. Next is a 338-06! The only "failure" was the .280 with the Madsen barrel. I checked out Hawk bullets, and they do indeed carry .286 bullets for the .280 Ross, but they want 70 cents apiece for them.
 

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Hi Bear,

Hey that's not to bad, well not over here anyway, normal run of the mill bullets cost around 52 cents a piece. You just don't know how lucky you are :(
 

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I normally use Hornady bullets, priced from a low of $11.50 per 100 (25 cal 120 gr HP) to $25 for a box of .458 500 gr. The .458's are in a box of 50, making them about 50 cents a pop, but you don't want to shoot a whole lot of them anyway!
 

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Brithunter said:
Hi Bear,

Hey that's not to bad, well not over here anyway, normal run of the mill bullets cost around 52 cents a piece. You just don't know how lucky you are :(
Try ebay you should be able to buy them and get them shipped.
 

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Hi Braskeeper,

Sorry no can do, two reasons, our laws and the US Anti terror laws. Were you aware that it's not legals to buy any gun related stuff including stocks, reloading gear and scopes without a special export permit now and has been for a little while. I tried to buy a swift scope from EB. Brown & Co last year and they efused to sell it to me because of this.

Here in the UK expanding bullets are restricted (as they are Soooooo dangerous , didn't you know) :roll: you can only buy them in person if you licence has the proper authorisation on it, the Police want ed them banned for all but the Police to use :roll: however they forgot about the law called the "Deer Act" which requires the use of expanding bullets (which are bullets specifacally designed to expand upon impact). Transport for them form wholesaler to shop has to be by secure carrier link Brinks Matt so of course the price to the end user has risen quite dramitcally.

So ordering for the US is difficult to say the least, a lot of firms will not deal with those outside the US as they cannot be bothered with the paperwork for the export permit, and a permit is needed for each and every shipment. If you want to check this out go onto to "Huntingdons specialities" web site they explain it there and the charge they levy to get the permit. I found this whilst looking for some .280 Ross brass. Oh the permits are "supposed" to stop terrorist form getting equipment :roll: and if you believe that they my friend you sure are gullible :( it's more like to restrict sales and so reduce the customer base of shooting product producers and so apply a squeeze onto them, some will feel the pinch and some will possibly stop trading :oops: :x

Like here in the UK they are trying more and more to limit and cut off the supply of shooting stuff, with out guns and ammo etc shooting will die. Along these lines they are making it almost impossible for youngsters to take up shooting even in organised clubs. Cut off the new shoots and the roots and the sport will die :( :x :shock:
 

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custom rifle

Already a couple of guys have suggested using a Savage rifle as your base. This is not a bad Idea. I have some experience with this idea and can report I am satisfied with the results. I used a Savage 110 caliber 270, and switched out the barrel to make it a 338-06. A new scope, refinished the stock, free floated the barrel and a set of dies, and I had me a new gun. All in all a very inexpensive way to make a new gun.

Check out the used gun rack this winter just after Christmas, I'll bet you can find a good used Savage in your price range. Check out Adams & Bennet for rifle barrels specifically manufactured for savage rifles. They are very easy to change out. In my case I have loads for 200 and 225 grian bullets. Both shoot just under an inch at 100 yards with the 225's somewhat better.

250.00 rifle
150.00 new barrel
40.00 savage barrel nut wrench
40.00 go / nogo gages

480.00 not free , but still a pretty good bargin.

longwalker
 

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I've never owned a Savage, so have no experience with them. I do collect old Mausers. Somehow, you always manage to end up with some beater closet guns that have no value as is. Used to be you could pick up sporterized Mausers on the auction sites dirt cheap, but even those are drying up. The best deal lately has been Czech 98/22's. Really nice action, wood and barrel maybe not so nice. They've gone up some, but you can usually find them for about $100. Military Gun Supply in Texas is listing some now for 99 and change. Add a $100 stock, $100 barrel, and maybe another $100 for a decent trigger, mount, and rings, and you're there. Add some more for bolt handle work, and refinishing the metal how you like, and it sounds like we're in the same ballpark. Where I can shave off $100 is in my closet full of beaters!
 

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Hey bear....

Pick up an old Savage bolt gun...& an Adams & bennet Barrel in the caliber u want..I found deal on a used 116 Savage SS 270 win. for 300 Bucks with the plastic stock..I put the 99 dollar A & B barrel on there in 35 Whelen & that puppy shoots !!! It loves 4064 & 250 gr Hornady bullets..It makes cloverleafs at 100 yds..I cheaped out on that project & reused the savage trigger & the plastic stock..The trigger is just ok..It shoots so nice I don't want to mess around with it.. On the next Savage project I want a switch barrel varmint rifle ...223 AI with a muzzle brake & a tactical 20 caliber ..I'm planning on any deal I get on a short savage action,with the small bolt face.. it will get the upgrade trigger...I got a Savage Laminate stock for the cost of just shipping it here..MANY THANKS DAVE B. in PA..that project will be fun...& I'll end up with 2 guns for under a thousand dollars....I'm not knockin gunsmiths or the custom barrel guys..I really like my re-worked rem 700 that sports a Hart barrel in 6MMBR ..That kind of job u need a pro..But If u want to tinker around & build a serious varmint gun or a hard to find caliber...I think u can't go wrong starting with a savage action..mike in ct
 

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Here is a link to my 2005 rifle project.

http://www.yerfrockethellhound.com/RiddleofSteel2005rifleproject.html

I finally broke down and tried a Savage. I was amazed at how many aftermarket add ons are out there for them. Barrel changes and bolt head changes are simple as pie even for the tool shed rifle smith.

I just bought a Savage 10ML smokeless muzzle loader. I am now considering building a .35-284 as a hog stalking gun. I cann't decide if I want a Model Seven and let a smith build it or go Savage and build it all myself.
 

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I'll cast another vote for a Savage project. I'm currently in the process of assembling all of the parts for my 338-06. Started off with a Savage 110 from WalMart, and Adams & Bennett barrel from Midway. I figure that without including the scope, bases, and rings the rifle will have cost me about $500 to $550. Not too bad for a custom.

Ranger413
 
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