December 13th, 2018

Just in Time for Christmas — Stunning Ruby Red F-TR Rig

X-Max Barnard Action V-block Welgemoed action Mostert carbon stock
Proud owner Dirk L. says: “This is my first build — never thought it would be a .308!”

Here’s a handsome F-TR rifle with a beautiful red stock that suits the holiday season. This ruby red beauty was a recent addition to the long-running Pride and Joy Rifle thread in our Shooters’ Forum. The rifle belongs to Forum member Dirk L. (aka “Pinkes”) who hails from South Africa. This is a .308 Win, with 30″ Bartlein barrel, and X-Max action. The stock is a custom composite with carbon fiber for strength and lightness. And yes this rifle shoots as good as it looks. Check out the impressive 5-shot groups below…

X-Max Barnard Action V-block Welgemoed action Mostert carbon stock

X-Max for Xmas — Impressive Metal-work
Along with that beautiful red stock, this F-TR rig has some very cool features, including a South African-crafted X-Max Action. The action designer Piet Welgemoed explains: “The X-Max action body is 17-4PH stainless steel pre-hardened to 44° Rockwell. Bolt and handle are one-piece stainless steel, nitrated to 55° Rockwell 0.2mm deep. Bolt is also fluted. Inside is the firing pin with washers (see below). The washer cuts the lock-time almost by half and also weighs less. The bolt-knob and bolt shroud are CNC aluminum. The action has very tight tolerances.” The complete action with +20 MOA rail and trigger weighs 1.475 kg (3.25 lbs).” Owner Dirk notes that the competition trigger, set at 3.0 ounces, is also Welgemoed’s design.

X-Max Barnard Action V-block Welgemoed action Mostert carbon stock

Wicked Accuracy with Bartlein Barrel, Varget, and 220gr SMKs
This gun has already proven to be a great shooter. Below are two FIVE-shot groups at 100 meters. The group on the left is in the low threes, with three of five shots essentially in one hole. Dirk loads Lapua .308 Palma brass and #2231 200gr Sierra Matchkings, seated 20 thousandths off the lands. The Varget powder and CCI primers drives the 200gr SMKs at 2620 fps.

X-Max Barnard Action V-block Welgemoed action Mostert carbon stock

Brass: Lapua .308 Win Palma (small primer) | Primers: CCI 450 | Powder: Varget
Bullet: New 200gr SMK #2231 | Seating: 0.020″ Off | Velocity: 2620fps

Composite Stock — One of Three by Renier Mostert
And what about that beautiful red stock? The rifle’s owner told us: “This was one of three similar stocks built as a test run by Renier Mostert, a professional composite stock builder and former benchrest shooter from Pretoria, South Africa. Renier was approached by three friends, who were all looking for decent, custom-built FTR composite stocks. There were a number of stocks available to them (mostly imported), but [those] were either made of wood or aluminum. The requirements for the composite stock build was very specific. Aluminum V-Blocks for the actions were required. The stocks had to be light enough to carry some beefy barrels and optics without compromising rigidity and still be within the F-TR weight limit. The three friends supplied Renier with an imported wooden stock as their shape of choice. Although the shape was quite straight-forward, Renier made a few dimensional changes to features which were not symmetrically correct on the sample, and then built a mold from it.”

X-Max Barnard Action V-block Welgemoed action Mostert carbon stock

Renier uses several methods to craft composite stocks for various disciplines: F-Class, benchrest, competition rimfire, hunting, and tactical. For this build he chose to build a shell constructed of a well-planned mix of woven fiberglass cloth and bi-directionally woven carbon fiber with aerospace quality epoxy resin to reduce weight in some areas and increase stiffness in other areas. He used a wet lay-up process where the two halves gets laid up and joined together while still wet to form a complete, continuous shell. The closed mold gets cured under pressure in an oven for several hours at very specific temperatures. After curing, the shell is filled with a high-tech mix of lightweight filler and epoxy resin. The composition of the mix varies in different areas of the stock to facilitate more strength or reduced weight where applicable.

X-Max Barnard Action V-block Welgemoed action Mostert carbon stock

After the initial build, the aluminum hardware was installed. An adjustable cheek piece, Anschutz rail, and adjustable recoil pad mechanism were installed. The stocks were inletted by Renier, while the final fitting and bedding procedures were left for each customer’s gunsmith to complete. The stocks were light enough for the rifles to comfortably be within the F-TR weight limit. A barrel tuner was mounted on one of the rifles, and the rifle still made the F-TR Class weight limit, 8.25 kg (including bipod). The bipod shown in photos in the SEB Joy-Pod.

X-Max Barnard Action V-block Welgemoed action Mostert carbon stock

Paint — Candy Apple Red over Metallic Silver Base
After final gunsmithing, the stocks were returned to Renier Mostert for custom painting. The rifle featured in this article was done in Candy-Apple Red paint from DNA Paints (an Australian company). To get the desired effect, a metallic silver base coat was used, enhanced with a modest amount of medium coarse glitter, followed with multiple layers of candy until the correct shade was achieved. A high-quality automotive clear coat was used to finish off the paintwork.

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October 19th, 2016

From Canada, with Lugs — New Ultimatum U300 Action

Canada Ultimate Precision U300 Bolt Action 3-lug

There is a new tactical action from Canada with some very interesting features. The innovative U300 Bolt Action from Ultimatum Precision features a Rem 700 footprint and three-lug bolt with 60° bolt lift (like a Barnard). The floating bolt head is quickly removable, so you can swap to a different rim size in a few minutes. Another interesting feature is a special “Battery Safety”. The firing pin can only protrude from the bolt face if the lugs are locked and in battery. This ensures that if the bolt head is not properly installed, the rifle does not fire.

The black Cerakoted U300 action is strong and tough — the 4340 steel is hard-nitrided for surface durability. The action-maker says the hard nitride and Cerakote coatings improve wear resistance, corrosion resistance, chemical resistance, and hardness. The U300 action fits AICS-compatible detachable box magazines.

Designed for Savage-type Barrel Nuts
The Ultimatum U300 system was design to accept a barrel nut so “pre-fit” barrels (configured for the U300 bolt) can be easily installed (or swapped) by the owner with no gunsmithing required. The U300 uses standard 1-1/16″ x 16 Remington 700 tenon threads, so it can fit pre-chambered barrels with Remington-style threading. NOTE: Barrels headspaced properly by a smith can also be mounted conventionally without a nut. The user can choose the system he prefers.

Canada Ultimate Precision U300 Bolt Action 3-lug

Ultimatum U300 Action features:

· Removable Floating 3-Lug Bolt Head
· 5/16″ Integrated Recoil Lug
· Battery Safety
· 20 MOA Picatinny rail, secured with six #8-40 bolts and two pins
· 4340 Steel with Hard Nitride Finish and Cerakote.
· Compatible with AICS-style magazines

Canada Ultimate Precision U300 Bolt Action 3-lug

Ultimatum Precision has started shipping the first U300 short actions. Suggested MSRP starts at $998.00 U.S. Dollars. The action-maker plans to release both a long action model and a .338-specific model later this year. Ultimatum Precision is located in Abbotsford, BC, Canada, with a subsidiary in Washington state, USA. For more info, visit www.UltimatumPrecision.com.

Permalink Gunsmithing, New Product, Tactical 7 Comments »
June 11th, 2014

Zebra Spotted in the Pacific Northwest

Forum Member John V.S. (aka BPD459) has a special story to tell — about rifle craftsmanship and a life-long friend. What you see below is John’s new .243 Win prone rifle. It sports a beautiful Zebrawood stock crafted by Mr. James Cloward. Here’s the story of Jim Cloward and John’s new gun:

James Cloward of Lake Stevens, Washington did the stock in just a month. The stock is African Zebrawood, with an Ebony grip cap and a WTC rail. Jim had the Zebrawood in stock. I wanted a lighter-colored stock and this blank called my name and did not eat my wallet either! Photos do not do it justice! The rifle features a Barnard action, and 30″, 1:7.5″-twist Krieger chambered in .243 Win by Randy Gregory. Sights are Warner rear and RightSight front.

CLICK Photo to See Full-Screen Version
James Cloward Zebrawood Stock gunstock wood prone rifle

Jim Cloward surveys the original blank.
James Cloward Zebrawood Stock gunstock wood prone rifle

Jim’s stock work is above reproach. His hand-cut checkering is better than a couple custom 1911s I had done by “big name” builders! When Jim refined the original Roy Dunlap stock, he created history. There is no better feeling / handling stock on the world than a Cloward Dunlap stock. I wanted him to do a Dunlap for my Barnards and we could not get it to work due to the size and trigger placement on the Barnard action. So, I just had to make due with his prone stocks — life is rough sometimes.

Respect for a Master Craftsman
I am honored to have known Jim since I was 12, and even more honored to call him a friend. Growing up, it was always “Sir” or “Mr. Cloward” when I would ask him something. When I was 35, Mr. Cloward told me “You can call me Jim now”. I felt like I was a grown-up adult that day!

James Cloward Zebrawood Stock gunstock wood prone rifle

I have several Cloward-built XC rifles and two other prone rifles that Jim stocked. It still amazes me how Jim can take a big piece of rough-sawn firewood and turn into artwork that’s functional and better looking than anyone else’s stocks!

Permalink Gunsmithing 1 Comment »
December 6th, 2012

Forum Member Shoots 200-26X at 600-Yard Prone Match

At a recent 600-yard High Power prone match in Florida, Forum member Frank Diaz shot a spectacular 200-26X score. He was firing his 6 BRX rifle with sling and scope in the Any Sights/Any Rifle category at the Port Malabar Rifle & Pistol Club. This is a remarkable accomplishment — we have never heard of a higher ‘Any/Any’ score shot at this distance on a 20-round stage with sling support. How do you score twenty-six Xs in a 20-shot match, you may ask? The answer is that, under the NRA rules, a competitor who shoots a perfect score (all 10s in X-Ring for his record shots), can continue to fire until he eventually places a shot outside the X-Ring. So Frank hit 26 Xs in a row. Wow.

Frank reports: “I shot a 200-26X at Port Malabar, FL at 600 yards using sling and scope. The wind was light, moving from Northeast to East at 5 to 10 mph. The gun was a 6mm BRX with 32.8 grains of Varget. My gun features a Barnard action, Brux barrel chambered by Paul Larson, and an H&H prone stock with work done by Alex Sitman (MasterClass Stocks). I [sometimes] shoot this gun with irons but for this match I mounted a Nightforce 12-42″.

Port Malabar Rifle & Pistol ClubThe Port Malabar Rifle & Pistol Club operates the last civilian competition 600-yard rifle range left in Florida. With 122 acres and a dozen ranges, Port Malabar is the largest self-policed shooting club in the state. While the 600-yard range is not open to the public, there are numerous organized events open to shooters from other clubs and locations. The range is located at: 610 Hurley Blvd. SW, Palm Bay, FL 32904.

Port Malabar Rifle & Pistol Club
P.O. Box 060307
Palm Bay Florida, 32906
(321) 956-8300

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December 2nd, 2012

Doan Trevor — An Artist with Wood and Metal

Doan Trevor is a master gunsmith and stock-maker who works in the old style. He still hand-crafts stocks from start to finish, and does all the metal-work on the custom rifles he builds. Starting with highly-figured woods, Doan carves and shapes his stocks largely by hand, with meticulous attention to detail. Each rifle he builds is optimized for its intended discipline, and custom-fitted for the customer.

Doan Trevor

Doan Trevor Customer Gunsmithing

With the help of his talented wife Sue (who does the photography and builds the web pages), Doan has created a wonderful website, DoanTrevor.com, that is a feast for the eyes. You can see beautiful wood-stocked rifles being hand-crafted. Doan also illustrates how he creates custom metal parts, and how he beds barreled actions into the finished stocks.

Doan Trevor Customer Gunsmithing

Doan Trevor Customer Gunsmithing
Doan Trevor Customer Gunsmithing

Set aside a few minutes and visit Doan’s website. Be sure to click on the site’s secondary pages: Rifle Building, Woodworking, and Metalworking. You’ll find dozens of high-quality photos and fascinating information on gun-building.

Doan Trevor Customer Gunsmithing

For more information, visit DoanTrevor.com, or call (505) 890-0368, 10am-5pm M-F.

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September 15th, 2011

“Pride & Joy” Palma Rifle in Turkish Walnut

Turkish Walnut Palma RifleIn our Shooters’ Forum, there’s a long-running thread entitled Pride & Joy Rifles. There you’ll find dozens of fine firearms — from hunting handguns to long-range benchrest rigs. A while back, Forum member John L. (GunDog64) posted this handsome Palma rifle, built by Chad Dixon.

John reports: “Here is my new ‘Pride and Joy’ Palma rifle. The action is a chrome-moly Barnard supplied by MT Guns. The gun is set up for switch-barrel use with two Medium Palma-contour Bartlein barrels, one chambered in 6CM, the other in .308 Winchester. Both barrels feature 5R rifling. Up front is a Riles 30mm front sight, while the rear sight is a Warner. The stock was crafted from a superb Turkish walnut blank supplied by Luxus Gunstocks in Mt. Orab, Ohio.

Gunsmithing by Chad Dixon — Stock Finish by Owner
All gunsmithing and assembly work was performed by Chad Dixon at Long Rifles Inc., Sturgis, South Dakota. Chad designed the trigger guard, handstop rail, recoil lug, and cheek-piece adjuster. John, the rifle’s proud new owner, completed the finish work on the stock. John reveals: “This project was a year in the making but well worth the wait”.

Permalink Gunsmithing 4 Comments »
May 6th, 2011

Barnard Precision Unveils New, Updated Website

Fans of high-grade precision hardware should log on to the all-new Barnard Precision NZ Ltd. website. Barnard’s new site is easy to navigate, and you’ll find plenty of eye candy — large-size, high-quality photos. Many handsome Barnard-actioned rifles are showcased, including rifles belonging to AccurateShooter.com FORUM members. And of course there are complete, detailed specs (with weights and dimensions) for all the Barnard rifle actions.

Barnard model P action website

The new site showcases Barnard’s full line of actions, plus complete rifles, and accessories such as V-blocks and sight bases. For more than 18 years Barnard Precision has crafted some of the highest-quality actions available, and now there are more options than ever, in both Barnard P-type actions and Rem footprint actions. Click the links below to see particular action variants:

Barnard Action Types: Barnard model P action website

Barnard Offers Complete .338 Lapua Tactical Rifle — the Mighty Model ’10’
One of the highlights on the new Barnard web site is the new Barnard ’10’ Rifle. If you’re interested in a serious, heavy-caliber Tactical rig, the Model ’10’ is very appealing. The Model ’10’ is designed around the .338 Lapua case and Accuracy International 5-shot magazine.

Barnard model 10 .338 Lapua

The Model ’10’ chassis is constructed predominantly from billet 6061 aluminum, with heavy-duty, marine-grade anodizing. It can be fitted with either a Right-Hand or Left-Hand Barnard .338 actions. Both the cheekpiece and the butt plate are adjustable, and the Model ’10’ also has a combo rear buttspike/bag rider.

Story tip from Edlongrange. We welcome submissions from our readers.
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October 3rd, 2010

Target-Tactical Stock for Barnard Repeater Actions

Ask any Palma shooter and he’ll tell you that Barnard makes one of the smoothest, most reliable actions available. And now there is a new modular metal stock system that adapts the Barnard SM action for use in target and tactical rifles.

Barnard Tactical Stock

The new Barnard 07 Target-Tactical Stock (TTS) from MTGuns features an anodized aluminum chassis with a floating tubular handguard. The TTS is designed for the Barnard small repeater action, and the chassis is configured to use reliable H.S. Precision detachable box magazines. One H.S. Precision .308-sized magazine comes with each stock, allowing the rifle to be chambered for any round with a .308-spec case head and a maximum overall length of 2.800″. That means you can mag-feed and shoot a 6XC, .243 Win, 6.5×47, 6.5 Creedmoor, .260 Rem, .308 Win, or 7mm-08.

Fully Adjustable Cheekpiece and 4-Way Buttplate
One of the most impressive features of the Barnard 07 TTS stock is the ease with which it can be configured for different shooters or different shooting positions. The stock comes with an adjustable cheekpiece secured with a large, ergonomic rotary knob. The Barnard TTS stock also includes a 4-way adjustable butt plate at no extra cost. This allows the shooter to easily modify length of pull (LOP), pad height, offset, and cant (buttpad L/R tilt). Also included with the stock is an elevated Picatinny-spec scope rail, and the Barnard SM action is drilled and tapped for a Remington-type rear sight base.

Barnard Tactical Stock

While there are many metal chassis systems offered for Remington-footprint receivers, the TTS system gives you the advantage of a Barnard action. Like its ‘P’-model big brother, the SM action boasts a very fast lock time, easily removable striker assembly — no spring compression issues — with a 1/16″ firing pin in a three-lug bolt. Overall bolt/receiver tolerances are machined to very exacting standards. The SM action can use Remington-style triggers.

Barnard Tactical Stock

The TTS stock is strong and stiff, yet light in weight. Using a TTS stock, you can build a rifle that is comfortable to carry in the field. A complete rifle fitted with a 26″ medium Palma contour barrel (and included Picatinny scope rail) weighs just 12 pounds. The Barnard Target-Tactical stock comes standard with sling swivel studs, one on the handguard and the other near the bottom of the adjustable buttplate.

For more information on the Barnard 07 Target-Tactical Stock, visit MTGuns.com, or call MTGuns (in California) at (805) 720-7720. The Barnard 07 Target-tactical stock, complete with floating handguard, 4-way buttplate, H.S. Prec. magazine, and scope rail, normally retails for under $1300.00, but prices are subject to currency fluctuations (Barnard products are crafted in New Zealand).

Disclosure: MT Guns has purchased advertisements on this site.
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September 8th, 2009

Young Yank Wins Honors at Canadian Fullbore Championships

Kelly Bachand Palma BarnardKelly Bachand, a 22-year-old electrical engineering student at the Univ. of Washington, recently ventured to the Canadian Fullbore Rifle Championships held August 13-22 at the Connaught Ranges in Ottawa. He arrived an unknown, relatively untested in international competition. By the end of the week, every shooter in Ottawa knew this young man’s name.

Kelly turned in a performance of historic proportions, out-shooting 300 other marksman to win many of the event’s most prestigious matches, including the Open Target Rifle Championship with a score of 1045-105V (the “V” is the Canadian equivalent of an “X” in the USA). Kelly also won the multi-day 21st Century Aggregate (1344-140V), the Harrison Aggregate, the MacDonald Stewart Aggregate (824-80V), the Polar Bear Aggregate, and he shot on the winning USA Young Eagles team in the Under 25 international team matches.

Among the various matches at the Canadian Championships, Kelly had eight (8) first place finishes, and twenty other Top 10 finishes. As you can see at right, Kelly harvested enough trophies to fill a truck. And to top that off, just after returning from Canada, Kelly won the 2009 Northwest Int’l Prone Championship. He did that all with his new Barnard-actioned .308 Palma rifle provided by MT Guns.

Years of Preparation Lead to Success
Though he’s only 22, Kelly has been shooting for over 16 years. He told us: “I began shooting when I got a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas when I was 6. I shot air rifle in high school and enjoyed it immensely. After graduating in 2005, I joined a Washington-based high power rifle team, the Bad Apples, which went on to win National Junior team titles. I began shooting long range with a Palma rifle towards the end of 2005 and was then the high junior at Camp Perry in the Leech Cup in 2006 and the Andrus in 2007 (both times shooting a borrowed Palma rifle). While I had been high junior and placed first in my classification a number of times, it was not until the weekend before the Canadian Championships that I earned my first overall match win — in a small local event with no more than 20 shooters. This match was, however, a huge success for me mentally; I did not crumble under pressure on my last string at 600 yards and ended the match with a perfect score, not dropping a single point.”

Kelly Bachand Palma Barnard

Special Challenge of Pair Shooting in Canada
Kelly reports: “The biggest differences about shooting in Canada are the 5-point V centered targets which are black and white (not buff) and the fact that shooting is done in pairs. I had been to the range in Connaught before in 2007 as a firing member of the World Champion Under 21 USA Young Eagles. The range there is beautiful and studded with flags between the firing line and the target bay. Unfortunately the flags were brand new this year and were unresponsive to wind for the first few days of shooting. It was sunny, cloudy, there was thunder, and there was rain so thick that the targets literally disappeared and shooting had to be paused. I had to be ready for anything.

After a few days of shooting I noticed my name was towards the top in a few Aggregates, but I focused my energy to avoid thinking about anything more than the next shot I needed to take. At one point I shot a perfect score but with a very low V count, and a friend asked me about it, I jokingly replied “it doesn’t matter how many Vs I shoot if I keep shooting cleans.” And that’s how I steadily moved up after each day of shooting. Beginning the final day in first place, I was paired with the second place Canadian shooter, who was just a point behind me, for the final 15 shots at 900m. I have never felt more pressure than when I was shooting side by side with my competition. Each shot I knew what I needed to do. Throughout the entire 15-shot string, that knowledge increased my heart rate but also my desire to win.”

YouTube Preview Image

MT Guns Provides Winning Match Rifle
As a “starving student”, a new Palma rifle was out of reach financially for Kelly … until MT Guns came to the rescue. Kelly explains: “When I was no longer able to borrow the match rifle I had used as a junior, I needed a new gun. As a college student paying for school with a part-time job, I couldn’t afford a competitive Palma rifle. Seeking sponsorship, I contacted Mac Tilton of MT Guns and asked if he could help me out. Mac generously offered to provide me with a complete rifle, and his crew at MT Guns produced an absolute tack-driver. My new MT Guns .308 Palma rifle features a Barnard 3-lug action, 32” True-Flight barrel, a Mastin Anschütz-style stock, Warner rear sight, and Riles 22mm front sight. This rifle fits me well and is a pleasure to shoot. The gun groups better than any other rifle I have shot. My load is 46+ grains of Varget pushing Sierra 155gr #2156 MKs with CCI BR-2 primers in Lapua brass. I have shot this load exclusively in every competition whether it was a Palma match or an any/iron match.” Interestingly, Kellly shot the entire Canadian Championship without cleaning his New Zealand-made True-Flite barrel. According to Kelly, he put “nothing but bullets through the barrel in Canada — well over 300 rounds including sighters and team matches”.

Kelly Bachand Palma Barnard

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August 23rd, 2009

Hard-Working Aussie Rifles with Wild Dog Stocks

Australia hunting rifle wild dog stock

It’s not unusual for a shooter to acquire a nice, custom hunting rifle that spends nearly all its life as a safe queen, getting used only once every few seasons, if at all. That’s why we like to see hunting guns that “earn their keep” in regular field use.

Forum member Andrew from Geelong, Australia has two matching hunting rifles that definitely get serious use, harvesting a wide variety of wild game. Both guns are built on Winchester Model 70 actions, fitted in Australian-crafted Wild Dog camo stocks. One rifle is chambered in .243 Win, while the other is a 270 WSM. Andrew has fitted Leupold VXL 4.5-14×50 scopes to both guns. That is the scope with the odd-looking cutaway front objective that lets the scope sit lower on the gun.

Australia hunting rifle wild dog stock Australia hunting rifle wild dog stock

Wild Dog Stocks and Custom Rifles from Australia
Wild Dog Australia, based near Brisbane, Queensland, produces both innovative high-tech stocks, as well as complete rifles. Wild Dog’s staffers are all active shooters and hunters. They build stocks that are light, but very strong, employing carbon fiber and advanced composites. The folks at Wild Dog aren’t afraid to think “outside the box”. One of the clever signature features of Wild Dog hunting stocks is a trap-door ammo caddy integrated into the buttstock. Smart eh? The flip-open ammo storage keeps your ammo clean and secure. You don’t have to mess with clumsy strap-on ammo sleeves that can slide around and collect debris and thorns.

Australia rifle wild dog stock

Australia rifle wild dog stock

Wild Dog Does Tactical Too
In addition to its hunting and varmint stocks, Wild Dog now produces a variety of rugged tactical stocks. The carbon-fiber reinforced thumbhole LA-TA2 and SA-TA2 feature clean lines with no protrusions. (These stocks run about US $900, plus another US $125 for custom camo paint.) Ergonomics are excellent and we think the grip/thumbhole area fits the hand better than an Accuracy International thumbhole stock.

Australia rifle wild dog stock

Australia rifle wild dog stock

Wild Dog also makes an excellent REM-SA-TA1 non-thumbhole tactical stock for Rem-clone short actions. The LA-TA2, SA-TA2, and REM-SA-TA1 all feature adjustable cheekpieces and adjustable length-of-pull spacer systems. Shown below is something you don’t see very often, a snakeskin camo Barnard-actioned tactical rifle. Leave it to the Aussies….

Australia rifle wild dog stock

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June 27th, 2009

Barnard for Long-Range Benchrest? — You Betcha'

OGVC OjaiOur lead story on AccurateShooter.com this week features Varmint Silhouette Matches at the Ojai and Pala clubs in Southern California. The Ojai Valley Gun Club Varmint Silhouette match starts off with a 600-yard, paper-punching stage using official 600-yard benchrest targets.

At Ojai, the calm, cool mountain air in the early morning often provides perfect conditions for long-range target shooting. Such was the case this past week. At the Father’s Day (June 21, 2009) Ojai Match, Bruce Duncan fired back to back 1.5″ groups with his Barnard-actioned, 6-6.5×47 match rifle. This rig was smithed by MTGuns, where Bruce works as Office Manager.

Bruce tells us: “The Barnard action is very popular with Palma, prone, and F-Class shooters of course, but I think we’ve demonstrated that Barnards can be very competitive in the long-range benchrest game as well.” Though both targets were shot in the early morning, Bruce acknowledged: “I got bit by a wind change both times — first right, then left.” Joking, he added: “But hey, my sighters were in the blue for both targets.”

Barnard 6.5x47

Target 1: 1.507″, 5 shots at 600 yards
Barnard 6.5x47

Interestingly, the Barnard “P” action is set in an aluminum V-block. The RBRP action features an MT Guns +10 MOA scope rail, with Barnard trigger. The barrel is a 1:8″ twist, 6mm Bartlein, measuring about .960″ at the muzzle. For optics, Bruce runs a Sightron 36×42 SII Big Sky with fine cross hair. Bruce tells us: “More power might be nice, but the 36X Sightron does the job.”

Target 2: 1.536″, 5 shots at 600 yards
Barnard 6.5x47

Bruce tried a variety of loads before settling on Hodgdon H4350 and CCI 450 primers pushing the tangent-ogive (non-VLD) Berger 108s seated about .020″ out of the lands. “I tested the Berger 105s in the lands, but this barrel preferred the 108s jumped”, Bruce observed. Bruce uses 6.5×47 Lapua brass necked down to 6mm. He turns the necks slightly for a PTG .270″ neck chamber. Rounds measure right around .268″ when loaded. For sizing, Bruce uses a standard Forster 6-6.5×47 full-length sizing die, with the expander ball in place.

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