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  #1  
Old 10-18-2004, 05:59 PM
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Question Browning or Tikka? - a few questions -


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Looking to buy a gun, already done some shopping, just wanted to get some more info.
looking at:
Browning stainless stalker 7mm WSM or rem mag

or

Tikka T3 lite stainless 7mm mag

Hunting: Deer, moose, and possibly elk
Conditions: cold! (upto -30 Canada!), bush, and open fields.
Important Aspects:
DURABILITY - hopefully will have for many years!
accuracy - not looking to snipe gopher eyes at 500yrd, but would like to make comfortable shots at 250-300
Perks - lightness, drop clip, warranty?
user-friendliness - smooth to operate, sighting in, recoil?

Whats some pro's and con's of each

And also, whats the scoop on the wsm vs. rem mag - accuracy, reliablility, weight, which is better and for what?

Optics? (thinking of leopold vari x III 3.5x10)

If some of these questions could be anwered that would be great, always better getting a users opinion than a salesman!

note: For these rifles pice is not a issue, just want to get good quality
Thanks, bbureau1

Last edited by bbureau1; 10-18-2004 at 06:01 PM.
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  #2  
Old 10-18-2004, 08:13 PM
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I have an A-Bolt II Stainless Stalker in .270 WSM, and I like it a lot. It was probably the easiest rifle to sight in of all that I have gotten in the last few years. I have a Leupold Vari-X III 3.5-10x40mm, that was bore sighted by my dealer. With factory 150 grain Ballistic Silvertips, it took five rounds to get it zeroed at 100 yards.

Out of the box, the trigger pull was very crisp, but had about a five pound pull weight, which was too heavy for my tastes. I had my gunsmith adjust the trigger as low as he thought safe. It's now at 2.75 pounds, and really sweet. A couple of weeks ago, I took it to the range. Again, with 150 grain Ballistic Silvertips, it would consistently shoot +/- 2" groups at 200 yards. A buddy of mine had about the same results with it. I think a better shooter with good handloads could probably expect something better.

It has a nice, smooth action. It's nice and light, and easy to handle. You could probably carry it for a long time and not have a problem. The A-Bolts have a magazine that's attached to the floor plate. You can drop the floor plate, remove the magazine box, and put in a full magazine and close the floor plate to load if you want to. I normally just load it from the top though.

I've handled a Tikka T3, but never shot one. They seem to be very nice rifles.

I'm a fan of the WSM family. I like the fact they are beltless cartridges. I also like the short actions, stiff receivers, and light weight. I ran some data to compare the 140 grain Ballistic Silvertip 7mm WSM to the 140 grain Ballistic Silvertip 7mm Rem Mag:

7mm WSM 140 gr. 3225 fps Muzzle Velocity
7mm Rem Mag 140 gr 3100 fps Muzzle Velocity

7mm WSM 140 gr. 3230 ft.lbs. Muzzle Energy
7mm Rem Mag 140 gr. 2990 ft.lbs. Muzzle Energy

7mm WSM 140 gr. Trajectory @ 300 yards -5"
7mm Rem Mag 140 gr. Trajectory @ 300 yards -6"

7mm WSM 140 gr. Energy @ 300 yards 2150 ft.lbs.
7mm Rem Mag 140 gr. energy @ 300 yards 2010 ft.lbs.

From this data, it appears that the 7mm WSM would have a very slight edge in performance, but not a lot. The rifle would, however, be about 3/4 lb lighter, and a little shorter. The 7mm Rem Mag would have a wider variety of factory ammo to choose from, if this is important to you.

I hope this might help!
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  #3  
Old 10-18-2004, 08:37 PM
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Doesn't stainless have some issues when used in extreme cold?

anyhoo... I have a T3, in .270. Mine is walnut/CrMo. Factory trigger is 3lbs, shorter bolt throw than the Browning, most models don't offer iron sights, but have an integrated receiver. I am very pleased with this rifle, it is super accurate.
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  #4  
Old 10-18-2004, 09:04 PM
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Thanks Raoul, thats some great info, good to hear from someone who has experience with a similar gun, sounds like your very satisfied

mattsbox - what kind of issues should i be aware of? rapid expansion and contraction of the barrel when fired? I don't think the stainless steel will should be affected in cold climates, But if there is concern please let me know. Thanks

Whats a good trigger setting (for hunting), and does the tikka trigger have to be set by a gunsmith too?

bbureau

Last edited by bbureau1; 10-18-2004 at 09:10 PM.
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  #5  
Old 10-18-2004, 09:54 PM
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Some steels, including stainless, get brittle at low (Canadian) temperatures. The old-timers on the Fort McMurray tar sands could tell you stories about machines that ran fine all summer but fell apart in January. Krieger is one of the top match barrel makers. Scroll to the bottom of this page to see what they say.
http://www.kriegerbarrels.com/RapidC...CompanyId=1246

A 3 lb. trigger is as light as I'd go for really cold weather hunting. fingers get numb. Not that I'd run to a gunsmith if a deer rifle had a sweet 2.75 lb. pull out of the box.

Bye
Jack
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  #6  
Old 10-19-2004, 03:06 AM
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I really think its a toss up with the two rifles you have mentioned. In the next year or two I plan on buying a 30-06 bolt action rifle and I have my choices narrowed down to the Browning A Bolt and the Tikka T3 lite just like you. Dad had a nice A Bolt stainless stalker in .280. It was a fine shooting gun, handled well and never gave us any problems. I haven't talked to anyone that wasn't pleased with the Tikka's, they seem to have gotten everything right. I was under the impression that the Browning had a shorter bolt throw than the Tikka, but I'm not sure on that one. Either way its still a shorter bolt throw than the others out there. I really don't see how you could go wrong with either of these fine rifles. And your cartridge choice seems good, I just wonder about WSM availability in canada. For what little you gain in energy and trajectory you might be better off sticking with a 7 rem mag. But thats just me.


As far as scopes go I know the Leupolds are fine scopes with a great warranty and many many dedicated followers, myself being one of them. I have two Leuplod scopes as of the present and I have had two others in the past. Each one has always done what I needed it to do, and done it very well. That being said, you really owe it to yourself to go and take a look through a Zeiss Conquest 3x9x40 or one of their other scopes. I did and was blown away. What I saw through that scope just looked so much clearer and brighter than all my Leupolds and everything else in that store. You may like something else better, but you ought to go look anyhow. I've seen them priced from 375-399. A heck of a deal in my book.


Just my thoughts on the subject, Good luck with the new gun and let us know what you get.



Matt

Last edited by mattpair; 10-19-2004 at 09:44 AM.
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  #7  
Old 10-19-2004, 09:36 AM
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I had a Browning A-Bolt Composite Stalker in .30-06 I bought in 1989 and it was the most accurate rifle I have ever owned..and at that time I put a Tasco World Class scope on her and never had to change the zero in 6 years of hunting with her. With 165gr Win Silvertips or some 165gr nosler ballistic tipped bullets from Georgia Arms I could consistently get 3/4 inch groups at 100 yards. I sold her when I needed some money bad and kicked myself in the behind until I finally bought another and got a Browning A-Bolt II stainless stalker in 300WSM with a Weaver Grand Slam scope and it is the same thing...great accuracy right out of the box with Federal or Winchester ammo and also some from Georgia Arms again.

I personally do not think you can get a better rifle out the box for the money...I believe Ric Jamison did a story on the A-Bolt a few times in his writings and said about the same thing....

Good luck...
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  #8  
Old 10-19-2004, 05:26 PM
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What I have heard is the same that Jack was saying.

of course, I have one of those gunsmiths too, who spent many years in the military, as an armorer and such.

He was just saying that in extreme cold the barrels could split, very easily. I've seen pictures of these barrels, its pretty scary, and I don't know if this happens to CrMo steel or not. I know that tool steel does shatter at extreme cold.
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  #9  
Old 10-20-2004, 11:16 AM
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I was taking a little closer look at the Tikka T3. I still think it's a nice looking and handling rifle, but I did notice a few other things about it. The Tikka has a two lug bolt with a 70 degree lift. The A-Bolt has a three lug bolt with a 60 degree lift. The A-Bolt comes in super short magnum, short, short magnum, long, and regular magnum action lenghts. The Tikka seems to be available in two action lenghts: standard, and magnum lengths. With the standard length Tikka action, it seems there are different spacers you use in the magazine to accomodate different cartridge lengths. These spacers also limit the distance the bolt travels. These spacers are made of a synthetic (pastic) as are the magazines. Also, the bolt shroud on the Tikka seems to be made of this synthetic material too. On my A-Bolt, the magazine and all bolt components are made of stainless steel.

Here in Ohio, we can't use centerfire rifles for deer hunting. We can only use shotguns, muzzleloaders, and handguns, so my rifle hunting is in Pennsylvania and other surrounding states. Our winter temperatures are typically in the 20's or teens, and only sometimes down around zero, so I have no experience hunting (or using stainless steel) in sub-zero temperatures.
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  #10  
Old 10-20-2004, 11:35 AM
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well

I own a t3 hunter in a .308 . i like the gun alot, it doesnt like cheap ammo and it loves hornady but im still experimenting with the ammo. I do like that tikka has a 3 shot 1 moa garrentee out of the box , i dont know if browning has the same. Also the t3's have an ajustable trigger i have my set down to 2 or so for target. well thats my opinion
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  #11  
Old 10-20-2004, 12:51 PM
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Thanks for the great replies, alot of good information. I think i will go dow to the local gun store to ask about the weather factor on the stainless and see if anyone has had problems in my area of hunting.

One other quick question:
I was doing some research on the 7mm wsm vs. rem mag, and came across a site which sais that the wsm's performance will dramatically decrease when used with shorter barrels (less than 26"), which is what the browning is (23"). Is this relevant, and reliable, or just out dated?
Reason I wanted the WSM was because it was more compact, lighter, and same performance, so is this info somehting to worry about?
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  #12  
Old 10-20-2004, 06:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbureau1
...says that the wsm's performance will dramatically decrease when used with shorter barrels (less than 26"), which is what the browning is (23"). Is this relevant, and reliable, or just out dated?
Reason I wanted the WSM was because it was more compact, lighter, and same performance, so is this info somehting to worry about?
I do believe that most of the reading I have done says that performance decreases dramatically with a sub-24" inch barrel, vice 26. Notice how early Win. M70 WSMs were 22" barrels, now all are 24". I do believe (and I could look up in my manuals if I weren't so lazy right now) that most advertised velocity data is obtained with 24" pipes.
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  #13  
Old 10-20-2004, 06:59 PM
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I believe Sabre is correct that all "short mag" data is based on a 24" barrel. From going over my literature, the following barrel lengths are what the various manufacturers are using in their short mags:

Browning:
Stalker series: 23"
Medallion series: 23"
Eclipse series: 26"

CZ Model 3: 23 1/2"

Kimber 8400: 24"

Ruger M77: 22"

Savage: 24"

Tikka: 22 7/16"

Winchester M70: 24"

Remington M700 SAUM: 24"


I remember reading an article somewhere a year or two ago where the author was experimenting with barrel lengths, and comparing the .300 WSM to the .300 Win Mag. I don't remember who wrote the article or what publication it was in, but in his experiments he had to go with a 28" or 30" barrel in the .300 Win Mag before its extra case capacity started to show velocity gains over the .300 WSM. As the barrel length increased from that point, the .300 Win Mag really started to run away from the .300 WSM. From this, it appears that if you wanted to build a long barreled (+30"), long range rifle, the .300 Win Mag would be the better choice.

I think if I really wanted to work at long range shooting, I'd go with either a Sako TRG-42 in .338 Lapua Magnum, or maybe one of the Barretts in .50 BMG. IMHO.
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  #14  
Old 10-24-2004, 11:48 AM
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Wow, lots of info. Thanks it helps alot,

just curious, anybody tried out the Leopold Boone and Crockett scope (preff. 3.5x10?), and how much diff. does it make from a regular hunters perspective, the size of the scope 30mm vs 40mm vs 50mm? is it worth the extra bulkiness?
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  #15  
Old 10-24-2004, 12:20 PM
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Just Bought A Browning Stainless Stalker Left Hand In 300 Win Mag With Boss Off A Internet Auction For The Price Of $490.00. I Was Used But The Bore Is Mint And Not A Scratch On It At All. It Is In Better Shape Than A New One On The Shelf At Gander Mt. I Got The Browning Because It Is Hard To Find A Left Hand With Stainless And A Fiberglass Stock. I Have Not Shot It Yet But Shure Do Like The Way It Feels And Looks. I Did Put A Limb Saver Recoil Pad On It To Replace The Hard Rubber Factory One And It Is Getting A Burris Fullfield Ii With The Ball. Plex. It Will Shoot 180 Grn For Bear And Whitetail Here In Pa. Over All I Am Pleased With It Although I Did Not Shoot It Yet. I Have Been Told That Shooting It With A Boss Will Take The Paint Off A Barn Door With The Sound. If Anyone Has One With A Boss Let Me Know What You Think
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Old 10-24-2004, 03:58 PM
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I put a Leupold VX-III 4.5-14x50mm LR with the Boone & Crockett reticle on my Win M70 Coyote .243 WSSM. The scope I have on the Coyote required high rings for clearance, and I think it looks good with the medium/heavy barrel. I don't think a 30mm tube would look too big on your Browning, but I wouldn't go with an objective larger than 40mm. A large bulky scope wouldn't fit the trim lines of the Browning very well. IMHO.

I haven't had the chance to use the range finding marks on the scope yet. I originally planned on using the .243 WSSM 95 grain Ballistic Silvertips (published velocity 3250 fps), but the Coyote doesn't like that load. It does shoot the 55 grain BST's (published velocity 4050 fps) very well, but that load would require a 300 yard zero to get me on at the 400, 500, 550, and 600 yard reference points. I don't have a place to try it at those distances yet.
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  #17  
Old 10-24-2004, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TAK DRIVR
Just Bought A Browning Stainless Stalker Left Hand In 300 Win Mag With Boss Off A Internet Auction For The Price Of $490.00. I Was Used But The Bore Is Mint And Not A Scratch On It At All. It Is In Better Shape Than A New One On The Shelf At Gander Mt. I Got The Browning Because It Is Hard To Find A Left Hand With Stainless And A Fiberglass Stock. I Have Not Shot It Yet But Shure Do Like The Way It Feels And Looks. I Did Put A Limb Saver Recoil Pad On It To Replace The Hard Rubber Factory One And It Is Getting A Burris Fullfield Ii With The Ball. Plex. It Will Shoot 180 Grn For Bear And Whitetail Here In Pa. Over All I Am Pleased With It Although I Did Not Shoot It Yet. I Have Been Told That Shooting It With A Boss Will Take The Paint Off A Barn Door With The Sound. If Anyone Has One With A Boss Let Me Know What You Think

I haven't tried a Browning or Winchester with BOSS, but if you don't like the muzzle brake feature (and I don't think I would), you could always use the BOSS-CR which isn't actually a brake, but still allows you to tune the barrel to your load without the increased blast.

At the price you paid, it sounds like a real bargain!
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  #18  
Old 10-24-2004, 04:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raoul
I haven't tried a Browning or Winchester with BOSS, but if you don't like the muzzle brake feature (and I don't think I would), you could always use the BOSS-CR which isn't actually a brake, but still allows you to tune the barrel to your load without the increased blast.

At the price you paid, it sounds like a real bargain!
Ya, thats good advice. I have a .270 BAR with BOSS. Its LOUD!!!! Not really bad if you are by yourself, just use hearing protection like we all should when at the range, but when others are shooting around you the blast can be a little irrating to them. Shoot it in the woods without ear plugs and your ears will be ringing, trust me, mine were. I try to bring plugs with me when i'm hunting with my BAR, but sometimes I forget, and then when I shoot, boy do my ears ring.
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  #19  
Old 10-24-2004, 05:29 PM
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my 223 has a brake on it and it to is loud, jut put plugs in and muffs on and be sensitve to shooting around other on the range and it shouldn't be a problem
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  #20  
Old 10-24-2004, 06:20 PM
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Just Orderd The Boss-cr.....thank You All
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