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Custom or Factory for New PRS

991GT3

Private
Minuteman
Sep 3, 2020
9
6
Hey all,

New to the forum, and hoping to get some advice. I want to get started in PRS and hopefully avoid some equipment purchasing mistakes

I want to avoid wasting money in either direction. Whether it’s buying a “beginner” setup that I’m going to upgrade within a year, or spending $8,000 on features that don’t matter.

What’s are the opinions of the best value for a highly competitive rifle setup? Custom? Start factory and upgrade as you go?

For the long range/PRS shooters that have some years under their belt, what would you do if you could start over?

I haven’t set a budget yet as I want to find what will work best and what is just hype. My goal is to have a rifle that doesn’t limit my chances to win, so the failure is all on me.

For budget context, I’m willing to drop $5,000 on a GAP rifle if the performance is there. What I want to avoid missing the $3000 setup that shoots just as well.

Any other PRS advice is welcome. Thanks in advance.
 

High Desert duck

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Sep 1, 2014
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I am running an impact precision action. If I remember right not counting bipod, glass or rings.
I had right around three in it. Shoots lights out but a big part of that is the smith. I am also running a Bell and Carlson stock (M5 detachable target competition) that had the barrel channel opened up, the aluminum block skim bedded and an area 419 12” universal rail. So it can be done.
 

DownhillFromHere

Aim > Impact > Take a Nap
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Nov 30, 2017
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A few thoughts:
  • What will you do with this rifle? Competition? Other?
  • Do you have a preference for traditional stock or chassis? If you don't know, don't spend $$ until you do.
  • Are you saying $5k for the rifle alone, or $5k for rifle, optic, and rings total?
    - If combined, then you should be looking at spending $2k or so on scope and rings. That opens a whole separate keg o' worms.
    - If optic budget is separate, you should plan to spend at least $2000 on scope and rings. There's no sense in buying or building a top-shelf rifle and putting a cheap scope on it, and there's definitely no sense in buying a good scope and mounting it in Walmart rings.
  • I wouldn't go full custom unless you have a known competent gunsmith engaged up front, before buying anything. Local, ideally.
I started the precision rifle addiction three years ago after buying a slightly used designated-marksman-variant AR15 (long heavy barrel, Magpul PRS buttstock, "Hiperfire" match trigger, mediocre optic) and finding satisfaction pounding steel out to 500 meters. The AR and a couple other not-much-used safe queens got sold to purchase, over several months, a Tikka T3X TAC A1 in 6.5CM, Tikka T3X Varmint in .223, and a CZ-455 .22LR, all mounted with mid-range Vortex optics. The Tikkas were 1/2-MOA accurate with about anything I fed them, the actions were super-smooth, and the triggers very crisp with good pull at 1.5 pounds with replacement spring. The CZ .22 was decent enough. I ran the TAC A1 and CZ in a number of matches. I put the .223 and CZ in MDT chassis.

Since then, I have upgraded all of them to R700-footprint centerfire customs and a Vudoo in .22, two in MPA BA Comp chassis and the newest in an MDT ACC chassis. Certainly not because I needed to for more accuracy (well, the CZ was borderline). I upgraded because I could and I appreciate fine engineering. My point: You can get factory rifles that are plenty accurate. I'm a Tikka fan in that regard (full disclosure: you can search for my thread describing CCI 450 primer light-strike issues with the .223; Tikka service kept it five weeks and didn't fix it; my friend and local smith diagnosed and fixed it in 15 minutes).

Wrt optics: I've been through nearly a dozen scopes. At present, I have a Vortex Viper PST 5-25x50 on my "extra" Stiller centerfire, a Vortex Razor 4.5-27x56 on my Vudoo, and a ZCO 5-27x56 on my Defiance Deviant centerfire. Is the ZCO "better" than the Viper PST? Well sure. Is it $2500+ worth of better? That's a lot more debatable. Is it $1500-1800 better than the Razor? That's even more debatable.

The Vortex optics are mounted in $150 Vortex PMR rings - solid and dependable. The ZCO is mounted in a $400 Spuhr 6001. Is the Spuhr $250 worth of better than the PMR rings? Not for me. I got it because there was a special where the mount was provided free with purchase of the scope. Otherwise, that rifle would still be wearing the second Vortex Razor 4.5-27x56 I sold to get into the ZCO.

There is much to be said for "buy once cry once." There is almost as much money in the Defiance/MDT/ZCO build as in my first three "serious" rifles combined, but I don't shoot it any better than its predecessors. I've enjoyed the journey to arriving at this rifle. There's no wrong way to go about it, although buying at the low end of rifle price points and spending tons of money to change parts trying upgrade it to something it isn't would be very questionable.

Good luck.
 
Last edited:

357Max

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  • Sep 11, 2019
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    Welcome to the Hide @991GT3

    There are several good options out there now for PRS entry level rigs. American Rifle company is worth a look. Engineering and materials selection is top shelf!
    Go ahead and compare features with other chassis, but I think you'll find the Zylo stays @ or near the top in every metric.
    The chassis is $1300 & the action is 1K so for another 200 your getting a done barrel set up for easy changes and TT trigger.

    1599421611305.png


    I bought one of there 4th of July specials in 6.5C and it shoots better then I can. I'm really liking the chassis.
    I got a hell of a deal on the rifle 2K direct from ARC & MK 5 HD scope $899.00 new at Cabelas.
    My total for entry level PRS rig is right at $4,000 with, 2 x ARC mags, ARC rings, 1 pair ARC external weights, 1 ARC internal rail weight, ARC action wrench, ARC 19# striker spring, MK 5 HD 3.6-18 TMR, Atlas Super Cal bipod, 419 arca lock clamp + barricade stop, 419 Harris adapter (to enable tilt on S cal), and 419 hellfire brake.

    My intent for this rig was to get into something I could compete with, and more importantly something I could use for training & to help me develop fundamentals. Therefore I chose 6.5 Creed as it's heavier recoiling then a 6 Gay Tiger. I'm keeping it on the lighter side with only 1 weight set for balance and a light weight Optic. Also leaving the Trigger a little on the heavy side to help me learn better trigger control. For optics I have a G@ Razor 4.5-27, but the MK-5/3.6-18 has great glass & I think shooting 10-12x for 500 & maybe up to the max 18 for longer prs style steel makes sense to be able to spot hits/misses. Keep this in mind when selecting an optic. 30x doesn't do much good for PRS style steel shooting when mirage is present & you need a good field of view.

    You get the picture, rather then trying to mask all my weaknesses with gear I'm trying to develop skills albeit with a rig that leaves nothing on the table.


    I think this also qualifies for production class if I want to enter that way.
    IMG_5610.jpg


    So Far it likes Hornady 140 ELD-M, 147 ELD-M, and 140 American gunner. I just got some prime 130 to try. Sadly it doesn't like Berger 140 hybrid target factory ammo, but my Steyr THB loves it.

    5 @ 500 yds with Hornady American Gunner 140 BTHP.
    IMG_5603.jpg
     

    991GT3

    Private
    Minuteman
    Sep 3, 2020
    9
    6
    A few thoughts:
    • What will you do with this rifle? Competition? Other?
    • Do you have a preference for traditional stock or chassis? If you don't know, don't spend $$ until you do.
    • Are you saying $5k for the rifle alone, or $5k for rifle, optic, and rings total?
      - If combined, then you should be looking at spending $2k or so on scope and rings. That opens a whole separate keg o' worms.
      - If optic budget is separate, you should plan to spend at least $2000 on scope and rings. There's no sense in buying or building a top-shelf rifle and putting a cheap scope on it, and there's definitely no sense in buying a good scope and mounting it in Walmart rings.
    • I wouldn't go full custom unless you have a known competent gunsmith engaged up front, before buying anything. Local, ideally.
    I started the precision rifle addiction three years ago after buying a slightly used designated-marksman-variant AR15 (long heavy barrel, Magpul PRS buttstock, "Hiperfire" match trigger, mediocre optic) and finding satisfaction pounding steel out to 500 meters. The AR and a couple other not-much-used safe queens got sold to purchase, over several months, a Tikka T3X TAC A1 in 6.5CM, Tikka T3X Varmint in .223, and a CZ-455 .22LR, all mounted with mid-range Vortex optics. The Tikkas were 1/2-MOA accurate with about anything I fed them, the actions were super-smooth, and the triggers very crisp with good pull at 1.5 pounds with replacement spring. The CZ .22 was decent enough. I ran the TAC A1 and CZ in a number of matches. I put the .223 and CZ in MDT chassis.

    Since then, I have upgraded all of them to R700-footprint centerfire customs and a Vudoo in .22, two in MPA BA Comp chassis and the newest in an MDT ACC chassis. Certainly not because I needed to for more accuracy (well, the CZ was borderline). I upgraded because I could and I appreciate fine engineering. My point: You can get factory rifles that are plenty accurate. I'm a Tikka fan in that regard (full disclosure: you can search for my thread describing CCI 450 primer light-strike issues with the .223; Tikka service kept it five weeks and didn't fix it; my friend and local smith diagnosed and fixed it in 15 minutes).

    Wrt optics: I've been through nearly a dozen scopes. At present, I have a Vortex Viper PST 5-25x50 on my "extra" Stiller centerfire, a Vortex Razor 4.5-27x56 on my Vudoo, and a ZCO 5-27x56 on my Defiance Deviant centerfire. Is the ZCO "better" than the Viper PST? Well sure. Is it $2500+ worth of better? That's a lot more debatable. Is it $1500-1800 better than the Razor? That's even more debatable.

    The Vortex optics are mounted in $150 Vortex PMR rings - solid and dependable. The ZCO is mounted in a $400 Spuhr 6001. Is the Spuhr $250 worth of better than the PMR rings? Not for me. I got it because there was a special where the mount was provided free with purchase of the scope. Otherwise, that rifle would still be wearing the second Vortex Razor 4.5-27x56 I sold to get into the ZCO.

    There is much to be said for "buy once cry once." There is almost as much money in the Defiance/MDT/ZCO build as in my first three "serious" rifles combined, but I don't shoot it any better than its predecessors. I've enjoyed the journey to arriving at this rifle. There's no wrong way to go about it, although buying at the low end of rifle price points and spending tons of money to change parts trying upgrade it to something it isn't would be very questionable.

    Good luck.

    The budget is unrestricted, so the $5,000 can be just rifle, but again, I’m interested in paying for quality where it matters. I was already pretty set on a Razor or MK 5 for an optic. My concern is the rifle. I don’t want to have to upgrade anything except replace barrels for quite some time.

    I lean more towards the traditional style stocks like Manners, McMillan. I was looking at an HMR originally until I started reading more about the custom rifle world.

    Thanks for all of the info so far, very much appreciated.
     
    Last edited:

    IPoutdoors

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    Feb 27, 2020
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    I was in the same boat as you when I first started. My criteria for a stock/chassis is simple. Adjustable LOP, cheek riser, stiff forend, arca rail, and be able to hold a heavy rifle vertically on stage starts. The last part eliminated a lot of stock. As far as actions go, I want to be able to use factory prefit barrels and install it myself. IMO, Proof prefit barrel is the best bang for the money out there. This eliminates paying a third party to cut the barrel for you. The money saved on barrels will add up quick since it is a consumable item So I went to Proof’s website and see what actions they support with prefits. This part then becomes a chevy vs ford vs dodge vs toyota. Best thing to do is go to matches and ask to hold competitor’s rifle. They are good people and usually very helpful. To answer your question. Yes I would go custom build. It is very easy to do and would not pay anyone to do it. Good luck on your journey.
     

    NewsShooter

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    Unless you're already shooting competitively spending more isn't likely to help you a lot. If you can't call the wind or improvise a position well during limited time, a Tikka CTR or a Bergara would probably serve you just as well. I'd look at one of the "production" class builds. MPA, ARC, They're probably the best buys right now. If you're comfortable working on rifles I do as the others have said, buy an action, trigger, pre fit barrel, chassis, etc.... The MPA or ARC will be in the same price range but already built. I picked up exactly what I was planning to build in the PX. Impact barreled action and and MPA chassis, for a lot less than I could have put it together myself.
     

    houndog

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    Sako TRG? Just ordered this rifle based on some research, so I don't have any first hand experience yet, but I know this is generally considered one of the top non-custom rifles our there. I picked mine up on sale for a little over $2,500 at Eurooptic, so they are well below your max. price - but you should save some funds for bags, rangefinder, bipod, muzzle brake, extra mags and ammo ... lots of ammo.

    For even less you could go with a Tikka CTR in 6.5CM. The stock the CTR comes with is not great, but at under $1000 you would have a lot of money left over to buy the after market stock of your choice. I do have some experience with this rifle (mine is in an XLR chassis). Gun is basically 2/3 MOA with Hornady match ammo.
     

    DownhillFromHere

    Aim > Impact > Take a Nap
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    Nov 30, 2017
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    Here's the thing about ordering parts and assembling your own without a reputable smith on deck to back you up: What if it doesn't work?

    Two experiences in point:
    • My most recent build is a 6.5CM/.223 switch-barrel built on a Defiance Deviant action in an MDT ACC chassis. Ordered the .223 action and Bartlein barrels from (well-known, well-respected vendor) with whom I had had telephone conversation discussing what I wanted to do. My long-time friend, a well-respected gunsmith in the region, said my plan was sound and he was on deck to take delivery of barrels and action as he has FFL. The vendor submitted an order to Defiance for the 6.5CM bolt, which would take a few weeks to deliver.

      [Sound of stylus dragging across vinyl record] Defiance tells vendor, Stop Right There, certain dimensions for .223-specific Deviant ashort ction are smaller than the standard Deviant SA. You canrun a .223 bolt in the standard-boltface-cut Deviant, but putting a standard-face bolt in a .223-built Deviant could cause problems.

      Neither the vendor nor the gunsmith (who has built a pile of Deviant-based rifles) knew. Fortunately the Defiance guys noticed the context of the order from a huge customer and stepped up - otherwise... oopsie. If I had submitted the order myself with prefit barrels and screwed it all together... and it wouldn't feed... who'm I gonna call?

    • Note the case with my .223 Tikka - a very popular factory rifle. It worked fine with factory ammo, but with CCI 450 SRP magnum primers (which are relatively thick & hard), ten to twenty percent of my rounds misfired with light firing pin strike. CCI 400 SRPs worked fine - but those little boogers are so soft and thin that even minimum loads caused excessive primer flattening and I wasn;t comfortable with that. SO LGS sent the thing back to Beretta, they ostensibly did something to it... and it still misfired. My smith/friend quickly noticed the firing pin tip was cylindrical, not rounded, which distributed the hammer energy too widely on the hard primer for certain ignition. He radiused the tip, and I never had another misfire.

      What if I hadn't had a good smith to whom I could show the rifle?
    If you're really comfortable assembling parts, setting/checking headspace, etc., go for it. I've been dinking with firearms for over five decades and I know I want somebody that knows what they're doing to headspace my almost-$700 barrels into my $1400 action and insure all the magic in my $250 trigger is aligned properly.

    My point is simply that, if I'm going to buy a bunch of expensive parts and try to assemble them myself, I'd want some backup. I have a crap-ton of stories besides these two. Just my experience and $0.02. I also have a LOT more liability insurance in place than "normal." I'm just a cautious guy...
     

    991GT3

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    Sep 3, 2020
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    I would consider building your own.

    Buy the action, barrels, and stock (Manners and Foundation allow drop in). Add glass (Tangent Theya, CZO, etc). Shoot it. Choose an action that has precut barrels.

    You will be thoroughly impressed how easy it is to build a tack driver with the right parts.

    Any preference on actions?
     
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    salks

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    I would take a look at the NYX rifle from Kelbly's. Atlas tactical action, XLR chassis, Bix n andy trigger, Krieger barrel. I like mine and its already put together.
     

    Sheldon N

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    Coming from a background of a lot of PRS competition, for your stated goals my advice would be....

    Choose a mainstream action that has prefit barrels available. Lone Peak, Impact, Bighorn TL3 would be the short list.

    Order a prefit barrel in the caliber of your choice. If you are building a gun strictly for PRS as you indicate pay attention to what calibers are commonly used, 6BR variants have been at the top of the standings for a while. I’d say a 28” 6BR barrel would be the easiest option for a reloader, maybe a 26” 6 creed if you shoot factory ammo . Heavier contour barrels are the most commonly used.

    Barrel vise, action wrench. Assemble yourself.

    Choose a stock that allows for drop in fit. Foundation or Manners (mini chassis) if you like traditional feel, MDT or MPA if you want a chassis. I’ve got a preference for Foundation, having shot all of the above. Genesis MG2 or Centurion would be the ones to look at. Hawkins DBM is the most commonly used with Foundation. Whatever you pick make sure it has a full length Arca/RRS rail.

    Triggertech Diamond trigger. APA gen III little bastard or fat bastard, or other similar self timing brake. Bipod that clamps onto Arca/RRS rail. Pair of AICS mags with plus 2 extensions, use a spacer kit if you go with 6BR. Game changer bag from Armageddon gear, I like the schmedium the best.

    Rings and high quality optic of your choosing.

    Then go shoot! As you said, it won’t be the gun holding you back. 😀
     

    Jknox1030

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    Any preference on actions?

    The big question here is 2-lug vs 3-lug. I personally really prefer the 3-lug actions. There are great actions both ways (the Cadex Sheepdog is 4- lug). If you haven’t already done so, shoot and research the differences. Much of it is personal preference, but can make a big difference.
     

    Jknox1030

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    My biggest mistake was dumping money in a sub par action early on. It looks like you’re going to jump the off the shelf stuff, so you probably won’t have that same issue.

    the other big one that I’m currently working through is not skimping on glass. This can’t be overstated!!! A ton of guys on here (my self included)dump money in the rifle because it’s the sexy thing to do. But in all honesty, the optic makes the biggest difference in this game!!!
     
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    NiteQwill

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    Any preference on actions?
    Impact 737R or anything similar that has prefits. It really is easy. With the actions and barrels today, don't let anyone tell you that you need a smith to build you a rifle. Yes, you can pay that extra or if the cost is almost the same then sure get a smith to build it.

    The rifle is likely to outshoot you.
     

    stello1001

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    I hear Mack bros has a very nice and decent action that isn't overly expensive and works well. You should check it out.

    However, if you want some thing more mainstream as well as tried and tested, I would go with any of the following.

    Bighorn TL3
    ARC nucleus
    ARC mausingfield
    Terminus Zeus
    Tikka T3X
    Defiance Tenacity
    Defiance Deviant
    Impact 737
    CDX R7

    I'm sure I left out some more, but these would all be reliable and should allow for relatively easy barrel changes. Look them up yourself and decide what features/price point you are looking for.

    I too am one who believes you shouldn't need to get the most expensive or top of the line action. While sometimes that may be nice, you don't want to spend too much on things that might be able to get by without. Your money is better spent on more ammo to train with. Other gear such as RF, bags, etc should have high priority as well...
     

    Chief_Rick

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    Aug 12, 2020
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    Hey all,

    New to the forum, and hoping to get some advice. I want to get started in PRS and hopefully avoid some equipment purchasing mistakes

    I want to avoid wasting money in either direction. Whether it’s buying a “beginner” setup that I’m going to upgrade within a year, or spending $8,000 on features that don’t matter.

    What’s are the opinions of the best value for a highly competitive rifle setup? Custom? Start factory and upgrade as you go?

    For the long range/PRS shooters that have some years under their belt, what would you do if you could start over?

    I haven’t set a budget yet as I want to find what will work best and what is just hype. My goal is to have a rifle that doesn’t limit my chances to win, so the failure is all on me.

    For budget context, I’m willing to drop $5,000 on a GAP rifle if the performance is there. What I want to avoid missing the $3000 setup that shoots just as well.

    Any other PRS advice is welcome. Thanks in advance.
    I'm in the same situation but I'm not in a position to go to shoots and try out different chassis/stocks/actions. With today's political climate I worry about the availability of stuff as November approaches. I am thinking of just buying a barreled action or at least the individual components and putting them in the safe until I can put everything together at a future date. I am currently leaning towards a BAT or a Defiance.
     

    991GT3

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    Ledzep

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    I know you mentioned you want a traditional stock. I tried a lot of things and found "home" with Manners T2/T4/EH1 stocks. If you're going to go that way, I suggest their mini-chassis unless you're trying to get super light weight. It's very good and it eliminates headaches with DBM inlets, fits, etc...

    That being said, the ARC XYLO is what I'm shooting right now. I won't own most chassis-- anything AR-15 grip is out of the question. The KRG offerings are kind of okay for me, but I'd rather have a Manners. The XYLO is solid. For a match/competition rifle, the adjustment and M-lok slot features come in handy. For a hunting rifle, I'm still in the Manners camp.
     
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    DocRDS

    Totally not turning you guys over to the feds.
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    The "Production" rifles many places are putting out are a huge bang for the buck.

    The afore mentioned GAP
    Badrock Southfork
    MPA prod rifle.
     

    Sheldon N

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    I want to avoid wasting money in either direction. Whether it’s buying a “beginner” setup that I’m going to upgrade within a year, or spending $8,000 on features that don’t matter.
    The GAP PPR is my current front runner. Thanks for the input.

    GAP is a great rifle, completely capable and won't hold you back. Good value for money.

    However, if you are going to stick around in PRS and shoot a lot, my prediction is that you will eventually upgrade to a rifle built around a nicer action.
     
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    MakeSawdust

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    There has been some very good advice given especially by Sheldon. I would stick with the common actions. Impact, Lone Peak, Zermatt TL3, Defiance. I have played with several Mausingfields and like them a lot. If you shoot something out of the ordinary you had better have spare parts along with you. Having parts and readily available prefits is a big deal.

    A good brake on an m24 or MTU contour should balance well and be plenty of weight to shoot nice. If you are reloading, one of the 6br variants is definitely the easy button. My wife shoots a Dasher and we literally pick the speed we want the bullet to go, seating depth tune until the group is small, and run it. The sd is always below 10 fps, usually much lower.

    As has already been stated, spend a chunk and get good glass right away. After that the big expenses are travel, ammo, and barrels. If you practice enough to place high, the cost of those items will make the initial purchase of the gear seem cheap.
     

    991GT3

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    Sep 3, 2020
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    GAP is a great rifle, completely capable and won't hold you back. Good value for money.

    However, if you are going to stick around in PRS and shoot a lot, my prediction is that you will eventually upgrade to a rifle built around a nicer action.
    My attraction to the PPR is that it’s spec’d out with almost every piece I was going to build and on my own. I’m still unsure on single vs 2 stage, but other than that it has what I want.

    To your point about the actions, this is a spot where my lack of experience is biting me. I haven’t had the chance to handle many of these custom actions. From research (not experience) I have not yet found what performance I would be gaining by spending more than a GAP PPR, Mk5/Razor, and hand loads (working on getting that setup). My thought to combat this and get some hands on knowledge was to take my LWRC (556) and just do a few matches (no expectation of winning) and see what other shooters will let me checkout.
     
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    wpeach1912

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    I would recommend going to local matches and checking out what other people have before you buy. Most people will let you try out their guns so you can get a feel for what you like. An action that takes pre-fits is definitely nice and reduces the cost of barrel replacement. The consensus also seems to be that 2 lug actions are the way to go to ensure reliable feeding. Also, don't get too caught up in chasing equipment because you can make up for a lot with practice.
     
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    Sheldon N

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    To your point about the actions, this is a spot where my lack of experience is biting me. I haven’t had the chance to handle many of these custom actions. From research (not experience) I have not yet found what performance I would be gaining by spending more than a GAP PPR, Mk5/Razor, and hand loads (working on getting that setup). My thought to combat this and get some hands on knowledge was to take my LWRC (556) and just do a few matches (no expectation of winning) and see what other shooters will let me checkout.

    It's not really a performance "gain" per se, since either gun will shoot well. What a better action gets you is something that feels a bit nicer in the hand when running, and likely will handle adverse conditions better (dust). That and the ability to order barrels off the shelf from a multitude of sources, rather than being stuck with one particular smith and their lead times or having to send in your action and be without a rifle while you wait.

    I had a GAP Crusader built on the same action as in the PPR rifle, and it would bind up when conditions got super dusty. Actions like Lone Peak, Impact, Bighorn will continue to run despite adverse conditions.

    There's also the risk that someone else's nice action and eye candy rifle makes you want to upgrade from the PPR to one of the higher end custom actions. We all would like to think we're immune to peer pressure but there is that risk too. :)
     

    357Max

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    My attraction to the PPR is that it’s spec’d out with almost every piece I was going to build and on my own. I’m still unsure on single vs 2 stage, but other than that it has what I want.

    To your point about the actions, this is a spot where my lack of experience is biting me. I haven’t had the chance to handle many of these custom actions. From research (not experience) I have not yet found what performance I would be gaining by spending more than a GAP PPR, Mk5/Razor, and hand loads (working on getting that setup). My thought to combat this and get some hands on knowledge was to take my LWRC (556) and just do a few matches (no expectation of winning) and see what other shooters will let me checkout.
    Take note when you try a comp with the LWRC if you find yourself adjusting length of pull differently for prone vs kneeling/standing??
    I change LOP about 1/2-3/4" depending on position.
    I like Manners a lot, but went with the Zylo for the adjustable LOP.

    I'm actually patiently waiting for notification from Manners for my PRS - TCS. Take a look at those (y)
     
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    991GT3

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    It's not really a performance "gain" per se, since either gun will shoot well. What a better action gets you is something that feels a bit nicer in the hand when running, and likely will handle adverse conditions better (dust). That and the ability to order barrels off the shelf from a multitude of sources, rather than being stuck with one particular smith and their lead times or having to send in your action and be without a rifle while you wait.

    I had a GAP Crusader built on the same action as in the PPR rifle, and it would bind up when conditions got super dusty. Actions like Lone Peak, Impact, Bighorn will continue to run despite adverse conditions.

    There's also the risk that someone else's nice action and eye candy rifle makes you want to upgrade from the PPR to one of the higher end custom actions. We all would like to think we're immune to peer pressure but there is that risk too. :)

    Ill definitely keep all of this in mind as I keep researching. Thanks for the input though. I haven’t heard of any issues with GAP actions so that’s something I’ll have to check into.
     
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    357Max

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    Boatninja

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    I'm looking at the rifle on the table in front of me and it is very close to exactly ARC's latest offering, I put it together myself for about $3200, mine shoots better than I can and probably as good as the best shooters can, no reason the ARC shouldn't be better. Buying it in the package besides being a helluva buy is a great jumping off point to pretty much anything imaginable.
     
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    Submoa69

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    Personally if you’re wanting to have fun and are on a budget, just go factory. There are a lot of great performers on the market, my favorite is the Tikka T3X TAC A1. If money is no object than build a custom piece.
     

    walt willis

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    Hey all,

    New to the forum, and hoping to get some advice. I want to get started in PRS and hopefully avoid some equipment purchasing mistakes

    I want to avoid wasting money in either direction. Whether it’s buying a “beginner” setup that I’m going to upgrade within a year, or spending $8,000 on features that don’t matter.

    What’s are the opinions of the best value for a highly competitive rifle setup? Custom? Start factory and upgrade as you go?

    For the long range/PRS shooters that have some years under their belt, what would you do if you could start over?

    I haven’t set a budget yet as I want to find what will work best and what is just hype. My goal is to have a rifle that doesn’t limit my chances to win, so the failure is all on me.

    For budget context, I’m willing to drop $5,000 on a GAP rifle if the performance is there. What I want to avoid missing the $3000 setup that shoots just as well.

    Any other PRS advice is welcome. Thanks in advance.
    The Savage once won the five gun competition right out of the box. I own a 550 CZ in .308 that likes 44 grains of Varget with 168 grain HP BT match.
    One hole MOA tight.
     

    rottenruger

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    Hey all,

    New to the forum, and hoping to get some advice. I want to get started in PRS and hopefully avoid some equipment purchasing mistakes

    I want to avoid wasting money in either direction. Whether it’s buying a “beginner” setup that I’m going to upgrade within a year, or spending $8,000 on features that don’t matter.

    What’s are the opinions of the best value for a highly competitive rifle setup? Custom? Start factory and upgrade as you go?

    For the long range/PRS shooters that have some years under their belt, what would you do if you could start over?

    I haven’t set a budget yet as I want to find what will work best and what is just hype. My goal is to have a rifle that doesn’t limit my chances to win, so the failure is all on me.

    For budget context, I’m willing to drop $5,000 on a GAP rifle if the performance is there. What I want to avoid missing the $3000 setup that shoots just as well.

    Any other PRS advice is welcome. Thanks in advance.



    I've never gone custom yet, so can't advise on that......other than believing it to be rather pricey if you're not a good horse trader.

    I CAN recommend the Ruger Precision Rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor, which with an equivalent scope would be $2500-3000.

    I can also recommend the Ruger Precision Rifle variant of the 338 Lapua Magnum (it freaked me out before it got sweet). With a corrsponding scope, $3500-4500. Lighten the trigger on this one, it's easy and it's rewarding.

    I have heard LOTS of good and very little bad on the Ruger Precision series of rifles. A range owner I took the 6.5 to for one on one training said it was the second flattest rifle he'd had on his range. It's my fave, by far. The 338 LM is sweet but pricey to operate, even with me doing my own loads.

    Don't know how some of the Savage equivalents would do you. My first 6.5 was a Savage, and I had so much fun and such MOA result with it that I soon moved on to the RPR 6.5 CM. Higher price, nasturally, and worth it. As was the Savage......worth it!

    Good luck, spend as much on the scope as the rifle, learn still shooting technique, and have fun.


    Ps: Unless you're rolling in it, start out modest and learn your likes and abilities.......THEN move on to an Accuracy International or a Surgeon and the highend Nightforce or Steiner scopes........
     

    Feif64

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    If the budget is unlimited then go
    -Impact action
    -Bartlein Barrel
    -Manners or foundation for stock or MDT or MPA for Chassis
    -Tangent Theta in a Spuhr
    -Triggertech diamond
    -Atlas, Harris, Ckye Pod for bipod
    I have a local smith in Central Kansas that is a wizard that cuts all my barrels, 1/4 MOA everytime if I do my part.
    I crapped a brick when i put down the cash for the Tangent, but I have never regretted that decision. Its almost like cheating
    Reference my profile picture for my Rig with MDT ACC chassis
     
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    CarlosDJackal

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    You can take one of two approaches.

    (1) Buy (relatively) inexpensive gear and see if you like the sport. If you take this approach make sure you buy a rifle and optic that you can grow with. I started shooting PRS with a Ruger Precision Rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor and a Nightforce SHV 4.5-14x50mm F1 in a Warne 20-MOA unimount and my decades old Harris bipod. I just purchased other accessories as I needed them. Once I figured out that I was going to keep shooting PRS, I built my rifle and the RPR became a backup.

    (2) Buy the best you can afford and hope you end up liking the sport. I am averse to this approach because I know a few individual who ended up with buyer's regret and very expensive gear that they jusst did not like. Most of them either got out of the sport or sold off their gear (usually at a loss) and bought replacement gear.

    Go to a PRS match and observe. Ask questions and a lot of shooters will actually let you try their gear after the match (if the range allows for it). Those who do this usually ens up happiest in the long run. Good luck!!
     

    991GT3

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    Sep 3, 2020
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    You can take one of two approaches.

    (1) Buy (relatively) inexpensive gear and see if you like the sport. If you take this approach make sure you buy a rifle and optic that you can grow with. I started shooting PRS with a Ruger Precision Rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor and a Nightforce SHV 4.5-14x50mm F1 in a Warne 20-MOA unimount and my decades old Harris bipod. I just purchased other accessories as I needed them. Once I figured out that I was going to keep shooting PRS, I built my rifle and the RPR became a backup.

    (2) Buy the best you can afford and hope you end up liking the sport. I am averse to this approach because I know a few individual who ended up with buyer's regret and very expensive gear that they jusst did not like. Most of them either got out of the sport or sold off their gear (usually at a loss) and bought replacement gear.

    Go to a PRS match and observe. Ask questions and a lot of shooters will actually let you try their gear after the match (if the range allows for it). Those who do this usually ens up happiest in the long run. Good luck!!
    My local club has matches out to 600 so I’m going to start out there with my LWRC AR and keep researching until I’m sure of every part I want. I’m pretty set on going the custom route but I need to see some of these actions in person everyone speaks of before actually ordering one. Thank you for your input! All of it is helpful.
     

    JeffLebowski

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    @991GT3 - Hot off the press! like 15 min ago.


    This would be my choice.
     

    Farquharson

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    Just in general, I always spend more on the scope than on the rifle. There are many rifles that will shoot as well as you can, but the optic really makes the difference. I’ve got Nightforce, Zeiss, Kahles. In the $ 2500+ range, choose the reticle and features you like best. Haven’t tried ZCO yet, but one is on the list.
     

    rottenruger

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    If the budget is unlimited then go
    -Impact action
    -Bartlein Barrel
    -Manners or foundation for stock or MDT or MPA for Chassis
    -Tangent Theta in a Spuhr
    -Triggertech diamond
    -Atlas, Harris, Ckye Pod for bipod
    I have a local smith in Central Kansas that is a wizard that cuts all my barrels, 1/4 MOA everytime if I do my part.
    I crapped a brick when i put down the cash for the Tangent, but I have never regretted that decision. Its almost like cheating
    Reference my profile picture for my Rig with MDT ACC chassis

    Budget is far from unlimited but printed out your list anyway. A Bartlein is already on my mind.

    If you want to pass on a contact for that smith in Kansas, I won't stop you !!!

    Thanks for your comments and list !
     

    rottenruger

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    Just in general, I always spend more on the scope than on the rifle. There are many rifles that will shoot as well as you can, but the optic really makes the difference. I’ve got Nightforce, Zeiss, Kahles. In the $ 2500+ range, choose the reticle and features you like best. Haven’t tried ZCO yet, but one is on the list.

    Do you ever switch scopes back and forth? A pain, but...... I've got two fave rifles, and can't afford the right scope for one, much less two. My aim is 1000K plus target shooting.

    Could you get maybe a Spuhr, mount the scope, then bounce it back and forth?

    Thanks for your further comments......
     

    NWnewguy

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    The recommendation for the Nucleus Gen2 full rifle is the best advice you've gotten. I wanted to tell you that while I really like the Nucleus, I am really loving the Archimedes. My favorite action has been a very early Mausingfield for quite a while, but the Archimedes is so sweet, that it might overtake it if I keep using it as much as I have been.

    The issue for me would be that there is an $1100 dollar difference between the Arch built rifle and the Nuke built rifle. That's just too good of a deal to compete with. I mean, it comes with a TT Diamond in it and can compete in production class. I'm not sure how you can do better than that. The Xylo chassis is the tits too. It's very comfortable for everyone I have let try it and it's so quick to adjust, that you could do it between positions.
     

    MakeSawdust

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    Switching an optic back and forth is a bit of a pain, but can be done. Both guns will likely have pretty different zeros, but will repeat pretty consistently. If you record the zero for each gun it will usually be within .1 or .2 mils. You will want to check zero every time you swap, but it will be close to where it was the last time on that rifle if you use good rings and a pic rail. You don't have to get a spuhr to make it work, but it certainly won't hurt anything either.
     

    oniak

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    For your first custom gun, it is not a bad idea to order a barreled action with trigger installed from a reputable place like Altus. Throw it in a chassis of your choosing and it will serve you well.