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200 yd target bolt rifle (.223 Savage 12 Varmint Low Profile / Nikon Black X1000) Login/Join 
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Picture of arcwelder76
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OK, listen.

Ignore all of the well meaning advice in this thread.

You don't know much about rifles, and your son doesn't either.

It used to be, that a great starting point was a 700. Those days are gone. I'd say a Tikka is sound...

But what you really need, is an inexpensive starting point. That is the Ruger American. It is available in unexotic calibers for short money, and will be the introduction a 700 used to be.

Just my opinion.


Arc.
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Posts: 25889 | Location: Love that dirty water, oh | Registered: June 09, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Given your budget, and what you want to accomplish.
I mentioned this in passing in my first post. I have one in 308 that is just over 1/2 moa with core lockt at 100yds


https://www.ruger.com/products...pecSheets/26944.html


Threaded 22" barrel
Pic rail,
Bedded
1:8 twist rate for heavier bullets

Should run under 500 with out tax. Gives you a substantial budget for shooting bench, shooting bags, spotting scope, and shit tons of ammo
 
Posts: 5397 | Location: Virginia | Registered: December 23, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I would not own a rifle that does not have an adjustable stock/chassis. With out having a chassis that fits me, adjustable length of pull/cheek height, there's no way I could maintain point of aim/point of impact, shoot the rifle consistently.

Suggest to look at a Tikka T3 8 twist, toss the factory stock and put the barreled action in a KRG Bravo chassis. The Bravo chassis is a lot of bang for the buck, smart design, vertical grip.... The other option dropping a R700 into the Bravo chassis realizing the restriction of a 9 twist, 69 grain max weight bullet. 69 grain bullet would not be a negative with a 200yd max distance.

Also add to your budget a bi-pod and rear bag. Harris bi-pods are tough to beat for the money. Rear bag like this one https://www.eurooptic.com/Arma...ag-Black-AG0636.aspx
 
Posts: 2619 | Location: 9860 ft above sea level Colorado | Registered: December 31, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by safespot:
I appreciate all of the input. This will be a good learning experience for both my son and me.

The original post has been updated with a rifle budget of $1k max (not including glass, etc). I'd like to come in around $800, but that may be a pipe dream. Sorry I forgot to include that info earlier. It really limits the options.

To address some of the other questions... This will be a bench gun, so the longer, heavier barrel sounds desirable. Future competition isn't a consideration at the moment, nor is shooting out beyond 200 yards. We'll deal with that if/when the time comes. I have to put some parameters on this thing or analysis paralysis or budget creep will set in.

My son did mention over the weekend that he is interested in being challenged, and didn't want to go with a 6.5 Creedmoor, .308, etc. because of the short distance at our range. We've shot a 10/22 at 200 yards on another range with crappy bulk ammo. Holdover was insane give the rifle was sighted at 50 yards. However, my son was able to break clays at that distance with surprising repeatability once I called out the shots and he dialed in the holdover. Still, he wants to step up from .22 LR.

Buying an action and building out a rifle would be fun, and I think we could pull it off, but I want to buy something my son can start using sooner.

Scope considerations will likely be a separate thread once the rifle has been selected.

Twist rate is something I had not considered, but certainly will now. Surprisingly, that eliminates the Remington 700 varmint models since they have slower rates at 1 in 12. I thought the varmint would be a contender given the 26" heavy barrel. Remington VTR models feature a faster rate of 1 in 9, but with a shorter barrel at 22". Maybe the VTR is still a contender since it falls in fritz's desired barrel length of 22-24".

I haven't had time to research some of the suggestions. I'll try to catch up by the weekend.

NikonUser, thanks for setting me straight on stock material. I like the classic look of a walnut stock, so I've been drawn to rifles with that "feature". I think I understand why you spec'd laminate or synthetic; they're both more stable than solid wood as far as moisture goes. Maybe they both flex less too.

Regarding ammo, I have an ulterior motive... I really do want to start reloading, and believe this will be a great segue to getting my son interested in the same. For this reason I have steered him away from rimfire such as .17 HMR.


Ok, so the parameters are:
200yds max.
No competition.
Off the rack.
Bench rifle.
<$1,000.
.223 Rem (Or at least, no 3.08 or 6.5CM)

I agree with you that the .223 is probably the best caliber for your purpose; easy to load when you start doing that, lots of good quality ammo, won't be punishing on the bench, very precise to 200 yards and beyond.

Since there is no competition, just forget about the Rem 700. At 200 yards, there is no need for a long barrel; remember that service rifle shooters go to 1000 yards with a 20 inch barrel. (They're nuts.)

Twist rate trumps barrel length IF you want to be able to shoot the heavier (longer) bullets, so you may want a 1:7 or 1:8 twist barrel. That said, the longer bullets in a .223 may be more difficult to load for accuracy compared to shorter bullets like the 52HP and similar. Flat base bullets can be awesome precise within 300 yards; there's a reason benchresters don't do boat tails at reasonable distances. So a twist rate of 1:9 would be excellent and would work great with the 69gr SMK and similar. The 1:12 twist will do a great job with the 52s and 55gr bullets.

I like laminate because it's very stable and I like the look it gets from the wood, without the shifting that comes with regular wood in high humidity climate like south Texas. But I agree that a nice wood stock is a thing of beauty.

I would look for a rifle with a 20-24inch heavy barrel in a 1:9 twist (if you find a 1:8 or faster, that would be great. I would also make sure it has a great trigger as I don't think you want to spend much time looking for aftermarket parts.

The Ruger Hawkeye Predator has a 1:9 22inch barrel that seems to be thicker than normal, the call it a medium contour.
The Ruger Hawkeye Varmint Target has a 1:9 26inch heavy contour barrel, so this one looks even better.

Savage has some rifles too, but their site does not list the .223 Remington as an available caliber. I looked at the Model 12 series and after getting over the shock of seeing my friend Stan's picture on the site, I noticed the MSRP was at $1500 and going north.

Tikka and many other should be able to fit the requirements.
 
Posts: 2949 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of maladat
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quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
Savage has some rifles too, but their site does not list the .223 Remington as an available caliber.


I don't really know anything about Savages, but they do make a ton of .223 rifles. For some reason the cartridge is listed out of order in the filter menu.

https://savagearms.com/content...off&ftube=off&fsamt=
 
Posts: 4677 | Location: TX | Registered: January 24, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by maladat:
quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
Savage has some rifles too, but their site does not list the .223 Remington as an available caliber.


I don't really know anything about Savages, but they do make a ton of .223 rifles. For some reason the cartridge is listed out of order in the filter menu.

https://savagearms.com/content...off&ftube=off&fsamt=


I'm quite certain that Savage has .223 rifles. My comment had more to do with their website than their products. They make solid rifles.
 
Posts: 2949 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of maladat
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Yeah, it's weird that .223 is out of order near the end of the list of cartridges.
 
Posts: 4677 | Location: TX | Registered: January 24, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by maladat:
Yeah, it's weird that .223 is out of order near the end of the list of cartridges.


I blame the Russians.
 
Posts: 2949 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Savage has a model 12 Varmint Low Profile rifle with the following specs:

SKU Number 18464
MSRP $1,199.00
Action Bolt
Barrel Color Natural
Barrel Finish Matte
Barrel Length (in)/(mm) 26 / 660.40
Barrel Material Stainless Steel
Caliber 223 REM
Magazine Capacity 4
Hand Right
Length of Pull (in)/(mm) 13.5 / 342.90
Magazine Detachable Box Magazine
Overall Length (in)/(mm) 46.25 / 1,174.75
Rate of Twist (in) 1 in 7
Receiver Color Natural
Receiver Finish Matte
Receiver Material Stainless Steel
Type Centerfire
Stock Color Brown
Stock Finish Satin
Stock Material Wood-Laminated
Stock Type Varmint
Weight (lb)/(kg) 10 / 4.54

https://www.savagearms.com/con...duct_summary&s=18464

Street price falls within the budget, plus there's a 10% rebate currently available.

Any idea what "low profile" refers to?

Also, question about twist rate... Statements above indicate a faster twist rate allows use of heavier bullets. Can lighter bullets be used with a fast twist rate, or do they become unstable?


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Posts: 510 | Location: NC | Registered: March 05, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by safespot:
Statements above indicate a faster twist rate allows use of heavier bullets. Can lighter bullets be used with a fast twist rate, or do they become unstable?

There are reports of light varmint 223 bullets being spun so fast that they spin apart shortly after leaving the barrel. This likely is a combination of a bullet that has a very thin & fragile jacket, and is not designed to be perfectly balanced at high spin rates. I have not seen this, however a shooting buddy has experienced this with one precision 7mm bullet model in a magnum long-distance rifle.

The lightest bullet I've shot in my 1/7 and 1/7.7 twist AR-15s is Hornady's 40 grain VMax load. I had no self-destruction issues with this bullet and the round is pretty accurate in all my ARs. Hornady's 55 grain Vmax loads are very accurate in all my rifles -- from 1/9 to 1/7 twist barrels. Another accurate and light bullet is Sierra's 55 grain Blitzking.

I don't know the significance of the "low profile" name. The few Savages that I've shot seemed like good rifles, and they were accurate.
 
Posts: 6000 | Location: Colorado | Registered: January 26, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of ed308
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Savage 10 in .223 would be my recommendations. Cabelas has the 10T-SR for $599 but they can usually be found at other sites for less. The 10 series is usually very accurate out of the box. All of mine shoot .5 MOA. But, 24" barrel and a junk stock IMO. Can always upgrade the stock later to get a 10 round mag.

I recently dumped my .308 Savage 10T for a cheap Savage 10 SBA (or maybe SBR) in 6.5 CM that I found online for $325. The big negative was the stock and a box mag. I put a blemish MDT stock on it that I purchased for $100 during their Thanksgiving sale last year. Now I have a rifle I really like and can shoot well with detachable 10 round mag.

You can also find the Savage BA Stealth for less than $1000.
 
Posts: 588 | Location: DFW Area | Registered: January 12, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Tikka T3 is a great rifle for the money. Smooth as silk bolt, very good trigger, very accurate. I use a T3 in 270 as my main hunting rifle. With a 4-16x50mm Zeiss its a stretch for a new shooter's budget, but its a great setup.

+
 
Posts: 2518 | Location: Unass the AO | Registered: December 16, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by safespot:
Savage has a model 12 Varmint Low Profile rifle with the following specs:

SKU Number 18464
MSRP $1,199.00
Action Bolt
Barrel Color Natural
Barrel Finish Matte
Barrel Length (in)/(mm) 26 / 660.40
Barrel Material Stainless Steel
Caliber 223 REM
Magazine Capacity 4
Hand Right
Length of Pull (in)/(mm) 13.5 / 342.90
Magazine Detachable Box Magazine
Overall Length (in)/(mm) 46.25 / 1,174.75
Rate of Twist (in) 1 in 7
Receiver Color Natural
Receiver Finish Matte
Receiver Material Stainless Steel
Type Centerfire
Stock Color Brown
Stock Finish Satin
Stock Material Wood-Laminated
Stock Type Varmint
Weight (lb)/(kg) 10 / 4.54

https://www.savagearms.com/con...duct_summary&s=18464

Street price falls within the budget, plus there's a 10% rebate currently available.

Any idea what "low profile" refers to?

Also, question about twist rate... Statements above indicate a faster twist rate allows use of heavier bullets. Can lighter bullets be used with a fast twist rate, or do they become unstable?


That is a very nice rifle and it ticks off every item that has been discussed as being "a good thing." The barrel is long with a heavy contour and 1:7 twist. I don't care for the fluting, preferring a full barrel for better heat control and rigidity but fluting is a compromise between weight and contour. I don't think it will bring any issues for your purpose.

Like fritz, I have no idea was the "low profile" description is about, I think it's just a name they grabbed out of thin air. The rifle certainly isn't flashy and that could be what they are talking about.

Now about the twist rate and smaller/lighter bullets. If a bullet is statically stable at the muzzle, it will remain stable throughout its trajectory with a couple of caveats.

1- It can become unstable and start tumbling when it goes transonic. I have seen that countless times in the days of your at long range matches with the bullets available in those days. I have also seen it with a modern bullets fired out of a .223/5.56 at 1000 yards on colder days.
2- If the bullet is imperfect, like a core with a void on one side or similar, the bullet will experience a dynamic instability (think of a football that is not thrown perfectly) and will actually start going off course. That's pretty rare these days.
3- If it hits something.

Now, a bullet can be spun so fast that it self-immolates (comes apart) once it leaves the confines of the barrel. I have seen this several times over the years and it's always good for a laugh at the competitors expense. A good friend of mine was shooting a new load at a 600 yard match out of his 6mm rifle and could not hit the target. He would fire and the target would not go down. I pulled out my spotting scope and was going to get behind him to read trace when I noticed a little cylindrical puff of dirty white smoke appearing about 70 yard down range. It was very quick; just a poof, one second and it was gone. Before I got my scope set up and told him to take another shot and this time I saw it plain as day. The bullet exploded at about 70 yards and that was it. Questioned about his load he said he was trying out these new light 6mm bullets in his 1:8 twist barrel with a hot load.

I've never seen of heard about such things in a .223/5.56 but I suspect it might be possible especially if the jacket is damaged or it's one of those 35gr grenade bullets in a 1:6.5 twist barrel. The story fritz mentioned with a 7mm is new to me; I had never heard of such an event from a 7mm. The very few other times I had seen this, there was always a 6mm involved and I think a 6.5mm at one point. But it's been a long time since the last time, probably 10 years.
 
Posts: 2949 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of sigfreund
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quote:
Originally posted by safespot:
Can lighter bullets be used with a fast twist rate, or do they become unstable?


Bryan Litz does a good job of explaining why rifling twist rate is important in Applied Ballistics for Long-Range Shooting. I reviewed his books here.

As many shooters know, the twist rate must be fast enough to stabilize the bullet, and that is of particular concern with long, heavy bullets that are better for long range shooting. So why not have super fast twists in all barrels? One reason is as already mentioned: Spin the bullet too fast, and it may come apart in flight. Years ago we only heard about its happening with bullets having thin jackets fired from powerful cartridges (for their caliber) like the 220 Swift. I have never heard of its happening with the 223 Remington, but it’s possible, I’m sure.

Then there’s the question of whether faster twist rates adversely affect accuracy (or precision, as Litz prefers to call it), but the answer isn’t that fast twist rates result in instability the same way that too-slow rates do. Litz points out that the faster a bullet spins, the more effect any tiny imperfections in the bullet will have on its staying on the same path and going through the same hole as other bullets in a shot string. He says that’s why formal benchrest shooters whose only goal is maximum precision (small groups) prefer twist rates that stabilize their bullets just enough, but no more. Most benchrest shooting is at short distances as compared to the ranges long range shooters engage their targets at, and who need their bullets to remain stable and to be less affected by wind to a much greater degree.




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39787 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Yes, but that's not the whole story, sigfreund. Bryan also suggested strongly that people actually apply more spin to their bullets that usual in order to preserve the BC of the bullet a little longer. If I remember right, and I would have to go find his book, he was saying that faster twists made the bullet become stable faster after leaving the barrel and thus not present a non-optimum profile to the onrushing air for as long.

This was most important for the big long heavy bullets favored by long range shooter and that's why a lot of F-classers increased the twist rates in their barrels.

My current .308 barrels have twist rates faster than 1:9.

But as usual, we are veering WAY off subject here. Suffice it to say that 1:7 in a .223 will shoot anything you can put in there, up to and including 90gr bullets due to that 26 inch barrel.
 
Posts: 2949 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of sigfreund
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quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
Bryan also suggested strongly that people actually apply more spin to their bullets that usual in order to preserve the BC of the bullet a little longer.


Good point.




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39787 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by sigfreund:
quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
Bryan also suggested strongly that people actually apply more spin to their bullets that usual in order to preserve the BC of the bullet a little longer.


Good point.


Absolutely correct. A good point on your bullet, what we longrange fanatics call a meplat, is very important for the best BC. Big Grin

This is why I am now pointing my boutique bullets to get the finest point possible without deforming the bullet.
 
Posts: 2949 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of sigfreund
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Big Grin

quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
This is why I am now pointing my boutique bullets to get the finest point possible without deforming the bullet.


Okay, how: Swage or trim?




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39787 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by sigfreund:
Big Grin

quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
This is why I am now pointing my boutique bullets to get the finest point possible without deforming the bullet.


Okay, how: Swage or trim?


Swage. I use a Whidden die to close up the meplat to a consistent (very small) tip. The boutique bullets I use have a very clean meplat, but they have slightly varying diameters, so I just close it up/ Bullets like Sierras have very ragged meplats and so you need to trim them first, then you can close then up.
 
Posts: 2949 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of sigfreund
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I have handloading equipment I haven’t used in years, so that die sounds like something I need to contribute to the collection. Wink

I had read about meplat improving, and it seemed like a good idea so it’s good to learn of some personal experience. Smile




“I can’t give you brains, but I can give you a diploma.”
— The Wizard of Oz
 
Posts: 39787 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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