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View Full Version : Best action for building a custom rifle?



JustBen
08-23-2012, 04:36 PM
What would be the best action for building a custom rifle? Make your vote and tell us why!

I'd have to say the Remington 700, simply for the fact that parts and accessories are readily available and every good 'smith has worked on them.

What's your vote?

jwirecom109
08-23-2012, 07:11 PM
I vote 700 ONLY because there are so many parts out there, you can make a cheap or expensive build.

I much prefer the Winchester for hunting myself but parts are extremely costly.

cmiller82
08-23-2012, 08:49 PM
I gotta go with the old school Mauser 96 :) For fun, and a challenge.

road kill
08-23-2012, 09:34 PM
Gotta go with the 700 Rem. Lots of goodies for it and most smiths have jigs made up to work on them.

BuckingFastard
08-23-2012, 11:18 PM
Another mauser vote here! This action has stood the test of time, it's been around since the 1870's so I'm sure in its 140 years of being in production there's plenty of parts and good smiths around that have seen at least one or two :p

stevesummit
08-24-2012, 06:36 AM
I have had 5 savages built and all worked out very well. The biggest hassle I had is getting stocks but my a3-5 showed up in 3 months to the day so no different then a remmy

sdeviation
08-24-2012, 03:46 PM
I like Remington 700`s its like the chevy small block everything is available and swaps into them and most Smiths if not all know how to chamber one...
but if i had a commercial Mauser copy or a Win70 or Ruger that i wanted a barrel spun onto i wouldnt hesitate at all,,

jrcbecher
08-24-2012, 05:05 PM
I have had very good luck with all rugers that I own (7 ) so that's were I would start.Just old fashioned and stuck in my ways

back40sniper
08-30-2012, 11:23 PM
I think nowdays you can get "gadgets" for all brands so it doesn't matter.

Spooksar
09-01-2012, 08:00 AM
One of the Remington clones for Target or non dangerous game. one of the Muaser clones or a Winchester for dangerous game

RobSmith
09-01-2012, 08:10 AM
The 700 ... Simply because everybody and their grandmother has been working on those since before you were born ...

Camo tung
09-01-2012, 11:22 AM
Mauser. Really enjoy my 6.5x55 on the M96 action. My repro C3 is built on a PH Santa Barbara action.

coyote
09-30-2012, 03:39 PM
I voted for the rem 700 but didn't read through the whole post it should have been the mauser.

A mauser is hard to beat for a hunting rifle imo with that large fool proof extractor and controlled round feed that allows you to load it in the mud upside down if you want.

Mumbles Marble Mouth
01-02-2013, 11:38 PM
Just wondering, but isen't Remington 700, Ruger M77, and Sako Mauser actions or at least an "improved" Mauser action? Pretty sure the Weatherby is as well. I'm not 100 precent on that so if someone can either conferm or clear this up for me, that would be great. I was thinking about getting a Remington BDL. I own a lot of CZ firearms and I want to experiance other brands rather than just one.

BrotherRockeye
01-03-2013, 09:38 AM
I'm going to vote Sako simply because of the L61R action being where I would start a custom build.
I don't do a "custom" every month like some folks so I would be picky! :D

muckwa
02-02-2013, 05:05 PM
My 6mm Remington is a custom job on the Sako aIII action. Just picked it up a few weeks ago.

Strewth
02-02-2013, 10:30 PM
I voted Sako/Tikka, but I'm not sure what you would do to make them better hunting rifles:la:

3MTA3
02-03-2013, 07:27 AM
I like Savage/Stevens for economy with accuracy.

TV-PressPass
02-04-2013, 02:20 PM
I miss my Tikka, and still lust over the Sako's on the gun walls.

Seeing the new AICS chassis for those has me thinking again.

stevesummit
02-05-2013, 06:43 AM
I picked up a Barnard p chey action. Fit and finish are great on this one and tolerances are snug. I have savage customs and one tikka . I would buy another Barnard for the next build for sure

westislandrifle
02-06-2013, 08:07 PM
Mauser action for the win

jwirecom109
02-06-2013, 08:15 PM
I vote 700 ONLY because there are so many parts out there, you can make a cheap or expensive build.

I much prefer the Winchester for hunting myself but parts are extremely costly.

Working on my model 70 build. Shoud be compete soon ;)

blueoval56
02-07-2013, 04:15 PM
I havnt done a custom yet, but i'm planning one and I'll be using a Tikka action. Buttery-smooooth and something different. I dont like Remington 700's for 2 reasons: 1- I've never picked one up that was comfortable in my hands, and 2- I dont use them beacause they ARE the Chev 350. I rebuilt a 1956 Ford F-100 from the ground up and everyone and their uncle was asking me when I was gonna toss a 350 in it. I bored and stoked a 351 Cleveland to 393ci and it is a monster. And its Different. Was it a little harder to get parts? Yup. But I like a challenge, and I like to build things that are off the beaten path.

So Tikka gets my vote!

BrotherRockeye
02-07-2013, 07:04 PM
where's the "pulling cash out of your wallet" action?

That's the action that starts and finishes the project! :p

DEWEY
02-14-2013, 12:25 PM
I have quite a number of custom and customized big game rifles and here are my choices in order: These are for "std" cartridges, i.e..270Win, .338WM, not for Rigbys,etc. I have also avoided special custom actions such as GM and Satterlee as most cannot afford them.


1. Brno ZG-47- hands down, THE BEST "Mauser" EVER built and available in small numbers for those who "get it".

2. Brno 21/22 action, superb smallring Mauser, the few with "roundbolts" are perfect for "mountain rifles".

3. Dakota 76, the ultimate "Mod. 70"......well worth finding a used one to build on or just buying the action alone.

4. Pre-64 Mod. 70 Winchester, especially 1946-55, a very easy action to work on and build into something really special

5. F.N. Deluxe or Supreme, a fine CRF action and not hard to find or costly.....watch for p-wars with higher bolt handle, not good for scoping.

6. Short Classic Mod 70-.308Win. Prefer the sts CRF version

7. Classic Mod. 70, any round-as above, like these in sts and they ALL need mods.

8. Remmy Mod. 7 or 600/650-superlight mountain rifle-had both, keeping sts. Mod. 7 custom-7-08

I also like the little CRF HVA actions for light rifles and these are my favourites, hope this helps. :)

Crobar
02-16-2013, 11:38 PM
Not meaning to hi-jack a fine thread, but I just read Dewey's post #25 and it has me pondering because this AM I happened upon a well worn ZG 47 in 7X57, no scope mounts and has obviously been ' well hunted '.
I really do not know just how much such a rifle is worth, but the asking price is $ 400... now is that a fair price as I would use it for a build since in my opinion its a bit heavy to keep as a 7X57, when there are others that are lighter like my old faithful BSA..

DEWEY
02-19-2013, 08:55 PM
We "know" each other from that alternative site here in BC, that I was asked by a childhood friend to participate in and then chose to withdraw from within a short time. I can give you some serious experiencep-based advice on this, should you be interested and will as we both have extensive collections and seemed to enjoy each other's posts on the site concerned.

I am having some computer issues and I am a "gun nut", NOT a "computer geek", so, if you would like to contact me by e-mail, I shall respond, do not want to post my phone no. here for obvious reasons.

I am at wodaxe@msn.com

SuperCub
02-26-2013, 04:36 PM
Every centerfire rifle I own is a 700 modded up with custom barrels and stocks. I also own 4 Remington actions (1-M7, 3-700s) that are waiting for barrels and stocks.

Having said that, I do have a hard time referring to my stuff as "custom". I see the 700 action as cheap, accurate and modular, making it a very good candidate for changing configuration.

A "custom gun" in my eyes is a classic work of art M98 action (or variant) with fine wood & metal upgrades all pieced together by one or more artisans expert in custom gunmaking.

DEWEY
02-27-2013, 06:14 PM
Well, I have also had those, Al Biesen, Geo. Gibbs, pre-war, etc. and so forth and to me, ANY gun built from parts to a specific set o specs. by a professional gunsmith, IS a "custom" gun.

For example, a Remmy sts Mod. 7 action, Gaillard sts bbl, 22", 7/08, Remmy Ti bolt handle welded on, PTG bolt, and recoil lug and all done by BC's BEST makers on a modded McMillan KS synthetic stock....this is not "custom"?????

Then, how about a slabbed Classic-70 sts shorty, re-worked Classic sts bbl, McMillan Edge Fwt. stock, Talley-Brockman ghost and post irons/mounts also by the above makers? This weighs 6.5 lbs, in .308Win. and SHOOTS.

Then, a certain P-64 .375H&H, sts Classic tube, Recknagels, Leupy QTWs, Micky MC stock, Gun-Koted, an absolute DRILL and tuned by me after being built in BC by a pro 'smith I no longer use......6" at 100M with 300 NPs and this "Cub" character seemed very "gung-ho" about getting this one?????

Most of the actions I recommend, after actually owning and using these for several years at least, IS a "Mauser" derivative, as is the Remmy 700. My Merkel drilling is "customized" and made much better by this costly procedure, but, ANY gun built from scratch to an individual's specs is "custom" and most are more money than wise men spend on toys!

Would you, "Cub" old boy, consider a David Miller 7mm RM in a Curt Crum walnut stock to be "custom"? I once saw this and the workmanship is fabulous, but, I would never spend that kind of coin on a Remmy action.....now we are retired, can't afford it, anyway!

BTW, how are ya, anyway, long time no talkee! :)

SuperCub
03-04-2013, 04:13 AM
Point taken ..... I guess the key word in my description for a 700 was "modular". The sum of a bunch of chosen parts screwed together in my mind does not make a custom gun. Either way, the term "custom" is entirely debatable.

I am currently getting this Model Seven into a 250AI. Barrel will be a 1:9" PN in a McMillan Edge. Modular gun, I say. :tounge:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v469/2439candace/050.jpg

There was the thread on 24hr a whille back where a fellow had a mini mauser in 223 redone from one end to another. Many of the parts incl, the stock were hand made and one of a kind. In my limited understanding, that WAS a custom gun.

I member that P64 375Mag and regretted not getting it, but the 375CT that I now own instead has been a very steady and lucky rifle for me. It all works out in the end.

Hey Dewey .... We are all fine here. All healthy, warm and filled.

SuperCub
03-05-2013, 04:59 PM
Here's some other actions in the safe, all 700s. 2-308, 1-223 as well as the above 308 Model Seven.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v469/2439candace/037-1_zpsb39f4e60.jpg

DEWEY
03-05-2013, 05:27 PM
The guns I have that I refer to as "custom" are all built to my specs. have one-off benchmade parts as integral aspects of the whole and are fitted to me as well as possible.

I also have others I call "customized", i.e. a Micky Edge stock installed or the super Brno 21H-re-done to .280 Rem. I just got Sat., finally finished. It has a Timney trigger, last of the Wisner 3-pos safeties, different bottom metal, I have used Sunnyhill, Blackburn and Weibe, and the Bansner blank has been much altered into a classic British style as seen on Martini's rifles.....this is maybe "half custom"? :)

I did a LOT more to that P-64-.375 after the photo posted on CGN was taken and improved it greatly, just picked it out of one of my safes yesterday after not handling it for months. Am probably building a very similar 9.3x62 on my last ZG action to be my "Grizzly" rifle for being in the bush and then will perhaps sell the .375.

Never know, I have trouble parting with the ones I really like, sold about 8 rifles/guns in recent months, trying to not buy anymore...............

Have you cornered the market on shorty Remmys? :)

SuperCub
03-05-2013, 05:39 PM
Have you cornered the market on shorty Remmys? :)
I've got plans for three of them (250AI, 308, 223), leaving a blued 308 bolt face action for a spare.

DEWEY
03-05-2013, 07:31 PM
Those impress me as being very sound choices for much of the hunting that you may do and it occurs to me that a .358Win. or .338Federal would really complete a most useful set. The .358 will shoot Nosler 180 gr. pistol bullets, cast bullets and 225NPs to some pretty impressive velocities, it has always struck me as a really practical round that has been overlooked by hunters who would be well equipped with a sound rifle so chambered.

I had thought years ago, of doing a .22-250, 7-08 and wildcat (then) .338-08 or .358Win, on short actions, at that time, my choice was Brno ZKK-601s as I had a pair of these and they were easy to find and cheap to buy. I ended up deciding to stay with my favoured .338WM and .280 Rem. rifles, but, in all honestly, as a lowly "meat hunter" who spent several months per year working alone in the BC and Alberta bush, the short rounds would have done my tasks as well.

Anyway, just a thought as I am sure that you have mulled over every aspect of this and know exactly what you want.

SuperCub
03-06-2013, 05:05 AM
I do like the 358W a lot having owned a few over the yrs and still have all the kit to load with. A 358W is perfect for moose and deer in this part of the world. I may get one of those actions in a 358 yet.

REMINGTON
03-17-2013, 10:40 AM
Here's some other actions in the safe, all 700s. 2-308, 1-223 as well as the above 308 Model Seven.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v469/2439candace/037-1_zpsb39f4e60.jpg

Some nice ACTIONS there to build a 338 Federal on ! :la: ;D RJ

DEWEY
03-17-2013, 04:11 PM
'Cub, what exactly is the action on the upper left as one looks at the computer screen, the one with the slotted bolt handle?

That seems identical to the one I have coming, as soon as my pittance of pensions arrive and I can finish paying for that rifle. Mine has a replacement bolt from PTG, bunch of other action work/mods and the handle is WELDED on, some Remmys having "lost" theirs!

Mind you, when I had Martini's shop and Reliable Gun here in Vancity do the work/mods on the Classic STS Mod.70 that I built a 23" tubed, Micky handled .338WM on, a "beater" for in B.C.'s frequent rain and leaving in the vehicle, I had that handle welded on as well.

So, that particular action looks pretty copacetic to me and I would really LOVE to have a .350 Remmy Magenum built on one like that as a mate to my 7-08......pretty neat pair for an old "geezer" like me to pack up the hills of BC!

Maybe PM me your phone number, I know I have it here some bloody place, but, am just doing my semi-annual sorting of all my outdoor gear and cannot seem to find anything I want when I want it......incipient dementia, eh! :)

SuperCub
03-23-2013, 05:17 PM
'Cub, what exactly is the action on the upper left as one looks at the computer screen, the one with the slotted bolt handle?
Top left is a 700 with 308 boltface. Bolt was modded up by a fellow in Alta. The one under it is a Model Seven, bolt had same treatment, but not all the way through the bolt handle.

mg4201
03-24-2013, 01:40 PM
For a Classic hunting rifle I like a mauser action even though they are an enormous pain in the a$$ to get a scope mounted on and to get the bolt handle to clear and not look ugly. I love my swede but it fought every step of the way of the conversion process. And IMO the bolt handle which sucked up far too much time still isn't right, even though it works. For a target gun or "tactical" rig it's savage all the way.

PoppaW
03-31-2013, 09:03 AM
Just wondering, but isen't Remington 700, Ruger M77, and Sako Mauser actions or at least an "improved" Mauser action? Pretty sure the Weatherby is as well. I'm not 100 precent on that so if someone can either conferm or clear this up for me, that would be great. I was thinking about getting a Remington BDL. I own a lot of CZ firearms and I want to experiance other brands rather than just one.

Putting Rem and Mauser together in design will ensure you burn for eternity. Mauser for a custom and I used a MKv for my big bore as it works with no muss or fuss. If you build a Rem custom it looks like all the other ones. Easy to do but blah to look at.

westcoaster
03-31-2013, 09:51 AM
Just wondering, but isen't Remington 700, Ruger M77, and Sako Mauser actions or at least an "improved" Mauser action? Pretty sure the Weatherby is as well. I'm not 100 precent on that so if someone can either conferm or clear this up for me, that would be great. I was thinking about getting a Remington BDL. I own a lot of CZ firearms and I want to experiance other brands rather than just one.

I'm no expert but here is what I understand it to be:

Remington 700 is a push feed designed in about 1960. Cheap to produce, accurate, strong enough, open to long debates on the extractor. :pot:

Ruger M77 mkI is a push feed with a claw extractor. A robust action with a tang safety and suspect barrels.

Ruger M77 mkII's and Hawkeyes are cast improved 98 actions with a Model 70 style wing safety. These are reputed to be robustly made with far better barrels - and triggers...

Sako has made improved 98 actions and their own which vary between push feed and semi controlled push feed. A strong but heavy action.

Weatherby started out being made on an improved 98 action in Germany and then Roy Weatherby designed his own short bolt throw push feed action with 9 locking lugs. Not to be confused with the Vanguard which is made by Miroku in Japan, and is a pushfeed similar to a Howa.

peterf
08-04-2013, 06:55 PM
Mauser does it for me.