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Desert Fox

And so it began

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The search for a light carrying rifle for hunting. 

My last hunt finally brought the realization that I'm no longer a young man. Logging 12 lbs rifle and 20 lbs of gear on my back pack is not fun anymore. So I decided I need to lighten my load starting with a new lightweight rifle that will weigh no more than 7 lbs including scope. I want a rifle that would shoot a heavy caliber round for long range work but light enough to carry around the field without breaking my back. I narrow down my choice between 28 Nosler and 7MM Remington Magnum. As much as I like the performance of the 28 Nosler, I still think the 7MM Remington is much more practical. I ordered an 8 twist barrel from Proof Research in Sendero Light contour and Stocky VG2 Carbon Fiber stock. The action is Ed Brown 704 clone with CRF bolt. I will be sending all component to Wheeler Accuracy in Montana as soon as the action arrived from Pennsylvania. I'm still looking for a scope that will weigh no more than 28 oz.

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My shoulder would not like that.  In true DF fashion I imagine you will be stacking rounds downrange in no time.  Congrats on the new toy.

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Rommel,

I found out the same thing a couple of years ago hauling a 10 Lb rifle around at 7,000' in Wyoming.  I've switched to a Ruger No.1 in 270 Win with a 3x9x36 mm Leupold for deer sized game. I still carry my Win Model 70 in 375 H&H for the big stuff but I don't hike the mountains with it.

 

 

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Frank, I just turned 60 this year and haven’t hunted much in the last 3 years. Even though I’m in shape, I can’t haul this much load anymore in my back climbing those hills. I really felt it this time. I have my 6.5-284 Norma that weigh about 8.5 lbs but I haven’t work out a non lead loads for it so I have no choice but to take my 300 Win Mag Model 70. 

So what I’m doing here is building an all around hunting rifle that I can carry anywhere, in any type of terrain and in all kind of weather. Pretty much a do it all rifle. I figured a 7MM Remington Magnum will be a good choice. This will replaced my most cherished 280 Remington which I sold to my friend. He wanted a rifle for his son and he offered to buy my 280 so I sold it to him. 

 

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My 260 Rem will work almost as good as your 7mm Remington Magnum!

I will just need be 500 yards closer than you to what I am shooting at! LOL

For about 30 years my deer hunting rifle was a Rem 700 BDL 7mm Remington Magnum with a wood stock. It was pretty heavy but it was a great shooter!

Have fun with your new toy!

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The weight is a drag for sure . I carry a shotgun full of tss shot and a rifle to my coyote stands. Made a 4 mile loop the other day . Add some dog leashes , it’s a boat full.

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Rommel,  I'm right behind you. I turn 60 in March.

I took my No.1 to Wyoming last fall and what a difference that made.  Before that it was the 11 Lbs. 6.5x284 built on the Montana Rifle Co action with a 27"  barrel and the big Nightforce on top.  I just put my max limit at 400 yards which is far enough.

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11 hours ago, dabob said:

My 260 Rem will work almost as good as your 7mm Remington Magnum!

I will just need be 500 yards closer than you to what I am shooting at! LOL

For about 30 years my deer hunting rifle was a Rem 700 BDL 7mm Remington Magnum with a wood stock. It was pretty heavy but it was a great shooter!

Have fun with your new toy!

You can't go wrong with 6.5 bore Bob.

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When I was shooting the 6.5x284 with the big Nightforce, my limit was way out there.  The Yote in my avatar was taken at 732 yards with that 6.5.   The Ruger No.1 is a 270 with a 3x9-36mm scope on top so I limit myself to around 400 yards.

 

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Side by side comparison between the 195 Grain EOL and the 180 Grain Berger Match at .200 free bore.

 

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I didn't know that the 195 grain EOL's were in production already.  What are you expecting for velocity in the 7 Mag?

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I had a light weight 300 win mag with a break on it. It would destroy scopes faster than I could buy them. I will say I never did put a real top end scope on it. I did though, talk to a local guy that sells a crap ton of top end scopes after the rifle destroyed 3 scopes in 3 years. He supplies most the LEO and Military and Long Range Shooters around here. Told him the problem I was having, and was talking about putting a Nightforce on it. He said that he had been through the same thing. Said a light weight rifle with a break on it was recoiling both ways like an air rifle. Told me the nightforce would last longer than what I had been running but would break also. I gave up and traded the rifle for another heavier rifle. Just putting this info out there. It was my experience. Yours may go better. I will follow this and see how this goes for you because I am getting old and tired of packing a 12 to 14 lb rifle too.

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Sometimes. it's all about the type of muzzle break you have on your rifle. Some are design better than others. My 338 Lapua Ackley weigh 16 lbs but shooting 300 grains bullet at 2900 fps induced a punishing recoil that eat scopes like there's no tomorrow. 2 IOR Valdada was ripped apart after just a few dozen round. The V-Brake that Nathan Dagley designed and installed on this rifle is not very effective in taming the beast. I mounted a Leupold MK-IV on it and I never had any problem. It's now wearing a US Optics ER-25 and I never had any issue except one time when two of the 3 screws on the Seekins ring broke due to, you guess it recoil. 

7MM Remington Magnum recoils is not as bad as 300 Win Mag, I will have Kampfeld Custom brake install on this rifle and I will mount either a Nightforce SHV or a March 1058 with MTR-3 Reticle. These 2 are the lightest scope that I found to be suited for this light carrying rifle.

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Finally got the action. I decided on 7MM Practical. It's basically a 300 Winchester Magnum necked down to 7MM with a 30 degree shoulder. Hoping to shoot the Berger 195 EOL at 2900 fps.

URL=http://s30.photobucket.com/user/silay57/media/IMG_2829_zps2jvx1pne.jpg.html]IMG_2829_zps2jvx1pne.jpg[/URL]IMG_2830_zpswyat9bsm.jpg

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9 minutes ago, Shoot-it said:

Is this for competition shooting to ? or just hunting.

This will be my new hunting rifle. 

 

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Very nice.  I did the same thing a couple years ago, was torn between rounds, but ended up going with a 280ai.  Shooting 168 VLD's, dropped 2 deer with it and a couple coyotes, nothing has take a step, all bang flop, deer was at 400 and another just under 200.  Coyotes ere between 600 and 100 yards.

If you havent decided on glass yet, check out the Leupold VX6, Im running the 3-18x44, does great, and very light.

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IMG_2924_zps71qvoqmq.jpg

That's what I have on this rifle. It's the 4X24 with Impact 23 Reticle.

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Very nice, have you ran a box test on it?

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