March 14th, 2019

XIT Strategy — Candy Apple Red McMillan-Stocked F-TR Rig

F-TR McMillan Fiberglass stocks Michigan Phoenix Bipod SEB Joy-Pod

On Facebook recently we saw an F-TR rig belonging to Team Michigan F-TR Shooter Dale Lucy. This features a Pierce action and a McMillan XIT stock, customized with an eye-catching Candy Apple Red paint finish. Kelly McMillan observed: “I like seeing what a shooter does to make his stock fit his personality. Dale sanded off the texture and then gave his stock a high-gloss Candy Apple Red paint job — beautiful.”

F-TR McMillan Fiberglass stocks Michigan Phoenix Bipod SEB Joy-Pod

Dale wrote: “I recently purchased a second XIT stock so that I would have an exact copy as my backup rifle, I painted this one candy red over a black and gold marble base coat.” Dale praised McMillan for helping his team: “Thank you for your sponsorship of the Michigan F-TR team, we really appreciate it. I can attest that since I started to use your stock (XIT), my scores have improved significantly. I placed 10th at the Nationals last fall, and was the 8th place Master at the 2019 Berger SWN. In contrast I finished 10th from the bottom at the 2017 BSWN.” — Dale Lucy, SW Michigan

F-TR McMillan Fiberglass stocks Michigan Phoenix Bipod SEB Joy-Pod

Gear Upgrade for F-TR Bipods

F-TR McMillan Fiberglass stocks Michigan Phoenix Bipod SEB Joy-Pod

Here’s a smart upgrade that can improve the tracking and stability of your F-TR competition rifle. And better tracking can translate to higher scores. Kreativ Solutions offers a $55.00 Pivoting Feet Kit for the Phoenix Bipod. Kreativ’s pivoting feet are also offered for the SEB Joystick Bipod for $125.00.

F-TR McMillan Fiberglass stocks Michigan Phoenix Bipod SEB Joy-Pod

F-TR McMillan Fiberglass stocks Michigan Phoenix Bipod SEB Joy-Pod

Permalink Competition, Gear Review No Comments »
December 11th, 2017

Pierce Develops New 10X Action for Big Magnum Cartridges

Pierce Engineering 10X Magnum Action

Pierce Engineering Ltd. recently revealed a new prototype action, a jumbo-sized receiver big enough to handle the CheyTacs and other very large magnums. This is good news for K02M and Extreme Long Range (ELR) Competitors, who favor mega-magnum cartridges pushing .375-caliber and larger bullets.

John Pierce says: “It’s been a long time coming, from design to prototype to testing. The Big 10 X is ready. This first test was in .300 Norma…next will be in .375 CheyTac.” Shown is a single-shot receiver. John adds that the “First repeater version should be completed next week. [This is a] dream come true.” This is one beefy action. Sources at Pierce say production versions should weigh roughly 3.75 pounds.

Pierce Engineering 10X Magnum Action

Sorry, we don’t have price or availability yet for the new 10X action. This new 10X receiver isn’t in full production yet. But we expect examples should be available by mid-year 2018. For more information, visit PierceEngineeringltd.com or call (517) 321-5051.

Pierce Engineering 10X Magnum Action

Based in Lansing, Michigan, Pierce Engineering produces a full line of custom rifle actions, including competition actions, tube gun actions, hunting actions, and even ultra-light titanium actions. In addition, Pierce Engineering produces precision accessories, including rails, rings, floor plates, and replacement firing pin assemblies for Rem 700 actions.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, New Product 4 Comments »
July 3rd, 2017

New Pierce 15.2 Ounce Featherweight Titanium Action

Pierce Engineering Titaniun action Ti Bolt featherweight action hunting rifle

When it comes to a “carry-around” hunting rifle, “light is right”. You don’t want to haul around unnecessary mass when you’re chasing game up and down mountains. When building an ultralight field rifle, it makes sense to prioritize the poundage — weight saved in the action, bottom metal, and stock can allow a heavier-contour barrel that may shoot better (and not heat up as quickly).

Now Pierce Engineering has developed a truly light-weight action, ideal for hunting rigs. The new Pierce Featherweight Titanium Action weighs just 15.2 ounces for the short action version. And the long action is barely more — just 16 ounces (one pound even). Pierce achieves this remarkable lightness with full Titanium construction — both action body AND bolt are super-high-grade Titanium.

Pierce Engineering Titaniun action Ti Bolt featherweight action hunting rifle

Pierce Engineering explains: “This fully Titanium action features a solid Titanium bolt. Utilizing a rare, high-grade Titanium ensures this action is built to last. This is not standard grade 5 Titanium; it is very strong and the hardness is 44-45 RC. Every Titanium bolt comes standard with a Black Nitride Finish that adds lubricity and prevents galling. We have tried many coatings and found this to be far superior than anything else that is out there. All the Titanium Bolts come with a threaded titanium handle and an aluminum teardrop knob.”

Featherweight Titanium Short Action: $1,785.00 | Featherweight Titanium Long Action: $1,835.00

Product tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
Permalink Gear Review, Gunsmithing, New Product 2 Comments »
September 10th, 2015

F-TR State of the Art — Low Profile Rig with Scoville Stock

F-TR Scoville Stock F-Class Rifle

One recent trend in F-TR competition is the use of low-profile, benchrest-type stocks shot with a light hand-hold and little or no face contact. For this method of F-TR shooting to work, you need the right equipment, and practice a “minimalist” shooting technique. One of the pioneers in this style of F-TR shooting is action-maker John Pierce of Pierce Engineering. Above you can see John shooting one of his F-TR rifles at the 2015 Canadian F-Class Championships. Note the straight-line stock and see how the adjustable bipod is set quite low to the ground (in fact the bipod’s arms are almost straight out).

F-TR Scoville Stock F-Class Rifle

Members of the Michigan F-TR Team, including Bryan Litz, have used similar rigs with success. Bryan said it took a while to adapt his shooting technique to this kind of rig, but there is a pay-off. Armed with a Pierce-built F-TR rifle, Bryan won his first-ever F-TR Match. Bryan explains the technique he uses when shooting this kind of rifle:

“Coming over from sling shooting, I knew there would be unique challenges to F-TR which I wanted to learn prior to (not during) a major tournament. I learned a new shooting position which doesn’t involve drawing the right knee up. For F-TR I get more straight behind the gun rather than at an angle. I found that the rifle shoots best with very light cheek, shoulder and grip pressure, approaching free recoil. This is how Eric Stecker shot his similar rifle into second place in the SW Nationals [with high X-Count by a large margin]. I learned the rifle’s sensitivity to different bipod and rear bag supports, and found the best buttplate position to allow the rifle to track and stay on target after recoil. This set-up shot best with a mostly free-recoil approach, that means ‘hovering’ over the comb, rather than resting your head on the stock. This took some ‘getting used to’ in terms of neck and back muscle tone. These are the kind of details I think it’s important to focus on when entering a new discipline.”

Bryan’s Pierce-built F-TR rig is a tack-driver: “I can certainly vouch for this set-up! In last weekend’s mid-range State Championship in Midland, MI, I shot my Pierce rifle into first place with a 598-44X (20 shots at 300, 500 and 600). Once you get used to the positioning and way of shooting these rifles, they just pour shots through the center of the target.”

Pierce F-TR Rifles with Scoville Stocks
Shown below are three complete Pierce F-TR rifles, along with a barreled action for comparison. The carbon-fiber/composite stocks are built by Bob Scoville. These Scoville stocks are very light, yet very strong and very stiff.

F-TR Scoville Stock F-Class Rifle

Permalink Competition, Gunsmithing 5 Comments »
December 27th, 2011

Pierce Engineering Offers Titanium Actions for 2012

For 2012, Pierce Engineering Ltd. plans to offer Titanium (Ti) versions of its popular Remington-footprint custom actions. Just 42% the weight of steel, Titanium is light yet very strong, with a strength to weight ratio of 1.5+. By producing action bodies from Titanium, Pierce Engineering is able to shave eight ounces (8 oz.) off the weight of a long action (compared to 4140 steel). What’s more, Pierce is now working on Titanium internals and Titanium bolt handles. This could bring the total weight savings to nearly one pound (16 ounces).

Pierce Engineering Titanium Ti Actions

John Pierce tells us: “To add to weight reduction we will offer a Titanium recoil lug and install a Titanium handle to the bolt, and possibly a lightened firing pin assembly. I really want to get close to a one-pound reduction overall.”

Pierce Engineering Titanium Ti Actions

The new Pierce Titanium actions were inspired by customer requests. One domestic customer wanted an ultra-light action for a sheep rifle, while an Aussie buyer requested a Ti XP action for a silhouette pistol build. John Pierce reports: “After many requests and having a bar of Titanium lying on the shelf for more than three years, [I decided] well ‘Why not have a go?'”

Price and Ordering Info
What will the new Titanium actions cost? Expect to pay an extra $350.00 or so above the cost of Pierce’s stainless and chrome-moly actions. John Pierce explains: “Titanium does cost a lot more and Titanium offers challenges in machining and special tooling. We are estimating that a Ti action will sell in the range of $350.00 more than the steel counterpart.” For more info, visit PierceEngineeringLtd.com, email jpierceltd [at] tds.net or call (517) 321-5051. You can also write to the address below:

Pierce Engineering Ltd.
5122 N. Grand River
Lansing, MI 48906
Fax: (517) 321-4574

Permalink Gunsmithing, New Product 3 Comments »
August 28th, 2010

Eliseo R5 Tubegun Shoots in the Ones with Factory 6BR Ammo

Eliseo 6mmbr R5 TubegunWhat kind of accuracy do you think a tubegun can deliver with factory ammo — during barrel break-in? Perhaps 0.6″ at 100 yards, half-MOA if the conditions are perfect? Well you may want to change your preconceptions about tubeguns — and factory ammo. This Eliseo R5 repeater, smithed by John Pierce with a Pierce CM action and Broughton 5C barrel, shot the Lapua 90gr factory ammo into flat ONEs during the break-in session. A day later, in tricky 8-14 mph winds, the gun nailed a witnessed and computer-measured 0.174″ 5-shot group using the 105gr factory ammo. That would be impressive for a “full-race” benchgun with precision handloads. For an across-the-course rifle shooting factory ammo, it’s pretty amazing.

Eliseo Tubegun Shoots in the Ones
This accurate rifle belongs to our friend (and designated expert trigger-puller) Joe Friedrich. During the initial break-in session, since his reloading dies had not yet arrived, Joe decided to start with some Lapua factory-loaded 6BR ammo he had on hand. After doing a few two-shot-and-clean cycles (with patches and nylon brush), Joe decided to try a 3-round group just to see if the Broughton barrel had some potential. To his astonishment, the Eliseo R5 put three rounds in 0.100″ (photo below left). Joe then cleaned the barrel again, shot a couple foulers and tried a 4-shot group. The results were just as stunning — 4 shots in a mere 0.104″ but three in virtually one hole (photo below right).

Eliseo 6mmbr R5 Tubegun

Eliseo 6mmbr R5 TubegunEliseo 6mmbr R5 Tubegun

Eliseo 6mmbr R5 Tubegun

Joe’s Halloween 6BR Tubegun SPECS
Chassis: Eliseo R5 Repeater, fitted with Eliseo Front Sled and Rear Bag-Rider.
Gunsmithing: Pierce Engineering Ltd..
Chambering: 6mmBR Norma, .272″ No-turn Neck, approx. 0.090″ freebore.
Action: Pierce Engineering, Rem 700 footprint, Chrome-Moly, fluted bolt.
Barrel: Broughton 5C (Canted Land), 27.5″, 1:8″ twist, Medium Palma contour.
Trigger: CG X-Treme Two-Stage.
Optics: March (Kelbly’s) 10-60x52mm.
Ammunition: Lapua 6mmbr 90gr Scenar BT (#4316045, non-moly), 105gr Scenar BT (#4316046, non-moly ).

Eliseo 6mmbr R5 TubegunYou Can’t Believe How This Gun Shoots
Joe called your Editor and said “You can’t believe how this gun shoots with factory ammo!”. So we arranged a photo session for the next afternoon, where I could verify the rifle’s accuracy. Well it turned out the conditions were way more challenging than when Joe broke in the barrel the day before. Winds were running 8-14 mph and were swinging through 180 degrees half-way down the range. Joe fired a few 90s through the Oehler chronograph at my request, then opened a box of Lapua 105gr factory ammo. It took about four rounds for the barrel to settle in after being cleaned the night before. Then Joe got serious, and with your Editor looking over his shoulder, he drilled a 0.174″ five-shot group in switching winds, doping every shot. Joe felt the gun could have shot tighter but he missed one wind call.

Serious Accuracy with a Multi-Purpose Rifle
So there you have it — a tubegun that shoots in the ones with factory ammo. Joe says that, at least with the 90s, the Elesio R5 shoots as well as his 6 PPC. Joe stressed that “steering the tubegun is hard work. You really have to concentrate compared to a purpose-built bench gun like my PPC. With the tubegun, everything has to be perfect on every shot — hand position, cheek position, stock position in the bag. If you’re off just a little bit, it’s easy to steer the gun the wrong way and send a shot out of the group.”

Accuracy Great but Fouling Heavy and ES Could Be Better
Have there been any negatives to Joe’s 6BR tubegun experiment so far? Well, the Broughton 5C barrel, while phenomenally accurate, shows signs of being a bad fouler. Copper built up pretty quickly over the first 25 rounds or so. We saw best accuracy with a recently-cleaned barrel. Hopefully the fouling will lessen as the barrel polishes in with use. And the canted land barrel is slower than average with the factory ammo. Lapua rates its 90gr naked-bullet ammo at 2950 fps with a 26″ tube. In Joe’s 27.5″ barrel we only averaged 2901 fps. With the 105gr factory ammo, which is rated at 2790 fps, we averaged just 2694 fps. That’s quite disappointing. Also the ES on the factory ammo, slightly over 50 fps for both bullet types, wasn’t particularly good. Still, the overall results were stunning. This gun shoots better than many long-range benchrest rifles running carefully-developed handloads — and it does that with factory ammo, right out of the box.

Eliseo 6mmbr R5 Tubegun

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Gear Review 11 Comments »
November 24th, 2009

Praise for John Pierce, Gunsmith and 'True Gentleman'

In our Shooters’ Forum, member David C. posted this account about David’s recent positive experience with John Pierce of Pierce Engineering. It’s nice when a good deed gets acknowledged. Dave wrote:

“I don’t know if you guys know or have heard of John Pierce, but he makes a fine action and custom rifles if you want one. Well his shop is only about 5 miles from me so I went to see him yesterday. I had bought a Stevens .243 with the idea of making a 6mmBR out of it. I had it apart and had cut 0.600″ off and put the same amount of threads on it. I just wanted [John] to ream it for me if he had the time.

Well, John took one look down the barrel with his borescope and said ‘It’s Junk’. He then went through his take-off barrels and found a nice stainless bull barrel and said ‘this will work’. He then crowned it, cut it off and threaded it with a shoulder so no Savage nut was required. He then reamed it and put it all back together and checked the head space.

If that wasn’t enough, John then loaded 15 cases for me, gave me 100 primers and showed me around his shop. Now mind you I had been there most of the morning. Let me tell you, this guy has his stuff together. Boy does he make a great action. I said, ‘Well how much do I owe you?’, and he said ‘Nothing… just go shoot it and have some fun’.

I did buy him lunch, LOL. Guess where I will be getting my next rifle? Thanks John, you sure made this old man’s day.” – Dave C.

Pierce Engineering

Permalink Gunsmithing, News 5 Comments »