If one were purchasing a new .308 bolt action (factory) for CBA competition, what brands/models have worked particularly well?
"BEST" new Factory .308 Rifle for CBA Competition ?
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“Best” being subjective, I’ve been using a Savage Low Profile Varminter since 2007. Bullet is a LBT 160-180 grain with N-133, N-135 or Varget with a Weaver T-36 scope. It is now for sale as I’m working up a new PBB rifle and don’t plan to shoot in Production category any more. This rifle holds a few MN State CBA Records.
Would be interesting to see a factory chambering of 7.62 x 39 in a similar Savage.
The Production classification is dominated by Savage and Remington. That is not to say the other manufacturers are not suitable. These two manufacturers are the most commonly available.
There are actually two "Production" classes, Production and Hunter. Both offer the same challenges, the choice of rifle is more the choice of a good chamber and even rifling. Your choice of rifle should be to stay within the weight limits of the chosen class.
The choice of scope is also important. Adjustable objective and quarter-minute adjustment are essential.
Good luck and welcome to the world of cast bullet competition.
Farm boy from Illinois, living in the magical Pacific Northwest
Second what Bud says; it depends upon the chamber and rifling.
I can personally attest that Tom's rifle is a good one.
I have shot several Production and Hunter class rifles. Once I bought a bore scope, I discovered that what Bud says is true.
In my case I had better luck with chamber/bore alinement with Savages than with Remington. I shoot with two guys who use Remington tactical carbines that are very accurate also.
Pay attention to stock shape. Many factory stocks ride the front bag very poorly. The Savage model 12 Low Profile has an excellent stock for bench rest use.
... i thought you had to have a Tikka to take a shortcut to the top in factory class matches ?? ....
i have an old tikka 308 and just assumed that if i showed up, i would be asked to shoot standing or something, just for a fairness handicap ... ??
From results I have seen in the FS I have to say Savage.
Cheers from New Zealand
If the varmint weight Tikka were readily available, it would be a very good choice. The Tikka barrels are made by Sako I have been told. They look like custom barrels through the bore scope.
Perhaps less well known, but the CZ rifles I have had anything to do with were all shooters. Good shooters, remarkably consistent for a rifle with a wood stock. I'm planning to get a 7.62X39 one in the near future, somewhere on this site there is a photo of a target shot with one of these, and if that target would not be good enough to be competitive at least locally, I guess I don't know what would be good enough.
If you are bucks-up, get a Steyr Scout. They are not cheap, but apparently you get what you pay for. I almost don't want to post about the Scout, since it can, to an extent, be a way for a richer guy to get an unfair advantage over other shooters who can't or won't spend the money. That said, Uncle Jeff considered that the whole point of the Scout, is precisely to give its shooter an unfair advantage! But, from what I read about them, they are just such excellent rifles, and apparently you can count on every unit to come out of the box ready to deliver nail-driving accuracy.
Full disclosure - I don't own a centerfire CZ, nor a Scout. I ought to rectify that situation soon, but you know how it is, there is always something else wanting money.
Funny that this was just posted. I was going to start a thread about the Savage 12 vs the Mossberg Patriot. When Cabelas has the 12FV on sale it's about the same price as the Mossberg. But if shooting in the Hunter class I'm not sure if the 12 would qualify. I've been out of the loop for awhile. I'm guessing the Mossberg would qualify since it's a rather light gun plus you have the benefit of actually taking it hunting without lugging a 26" Varmint weight barrel around. I've read some good reviews and watched some YouTube videos and the Mossberg seems like a decent gun for the money. But as the OP said what is a good gun that will be competitive and could the Mossberg be included? I have no experience with either Savage or Mossberg so a knowledgeable opinion would be a great benefit.
The Savage I noted earlier, without scope, weighs 9-pounds, 14-ounces. With the T-36 and mounts it makes CBA Production totalling 11-pounds, 8- ounces, under the CBA 12-pound Production limit. The CBA limit for Hunter is 9 pounds, 8-ounces, so even without a scope it is too heavy for Hunter category.
Have fun figurin this out!
Weight in addition to barrel and chamber are considerations in Hunter class. With the lighter weight, smaller calibers are also a consideration due to lighter recoil. Still, the .308 Winchester does not recoil too much.
Website search shows the weight of the rifles, most are within the limits.
Modern production gives great barrels, you will need to match the bullet to the bore dimensions.
The one factor not discussed, personal stock fit. The rifle that feels best and you can shoot most comfortably is critical. I like the feel of a Remington 700 Varminter and have shot these rifles well. Alice likes the Savage 12BVSS and shoots it well.
Farm boy from Illinois, living in the magical Pacific Northwest
If it was me I would think outside the box and get a Bergera. I'm of the opinion that Bergera is the most accurate factory rifle these days.
You want to get started on a budget ? This Savage "tactical M10" cost under $300 and is sub MOA accurate.
The most accurate out-of -the-box factory .308 rifles I've found for cast bullet use has been a Remington 700 VS (Varmint Synthetic), basically a short action Sendero before Senderos were in production and a Ruger 77V. Both have heavy "varmint weight" barrels. I bought these new more than twenty-five years ago, but such rifles shouldn't be hard to find. I don't know what they weigh, but I'm sure they are lighter than the extra heavy Savage guns.
Go back and read Bud Hyett's first post.
I have had several Remingtons, two Winchesters and a Savage. It is all about luck of the draw, do you get a nice concentric chamber and a good barrel. All the companies make good hunting rifles, sometimes the stars align and they turn out a tack driver. Short of doing a chamber cast or slug before you buy it there is NO way to tell.
Buy Tom's rifle, it is a proven shooter!
Several factors are involved in what you want. A well put together rifle is a necessity irregardless of what you pick. For shooting lead, a barrel with deeper rifling is easier to get to shoot than one with shallow rifling. Twist for the bullet length and velocity should be considered. Button rifled versus hammer forged is another. For myself, I use a Ruger Scout rifle and would also chose a Browning if one came along in a left handed action as these two have proven to shoot quite well.
Why only 308 caliber? It is true that most of the production class and hunting rifle class matches are won with the 308. But this could have something to do with the fact that 99 percent of the competitors in those two factory rifle classes use only the 308. In spite of almost everybody using the 308, three of the records in production class are held by a 243 and about half of the national champions in hunting rifle class have used smaller calibers.
In last year's nationals the only two 223s entered placed first in HR and second in Pro. The only 250 Savage seen in 40 years won one of the HR aggregates. In 2018 the only 30-06 entered won Pro.
The new, fad driven, 6.5 Creedmore has a throating design that seems to me to have a lot of potential for a cast bullet rifle. Lower recoil, enough twist for high BC bullets, and plenty of new rifles.
Unlike JB bench rest shooters who all use the same equipment, caliber, powder and primers, CBA shooters are usually a pretty independent thinking bunch with no consensus on which powder, primer, lube, bullet design, or scope is best. But when it comes to caliber for factory rifle matches you might think there is only one caliber on the market.
Something to think about.
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