Help Newbie Spend/Save $$$

Is the custom worth it?

  • Remington 700 Magpul .308WIN 20" FDE

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Strzelec

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Jun 7, 2022
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Trying to get into the long range game but live in Southern California so range time is going to be limited/infrequent. Not sure if the custom rifle is worth it…but I’m drawn to it. Hopefully I can get some advice here - thanks in advance.

There’s an opportunity to purchase a 2nd hand, but unfired, Spartan Precision custom rifle (details below) for $3,800. Private party transaction means no tax.

Other options available out there include the two in the poll…$800 + tax for the 700 SPS and $1,250 + tax for the 700 Magpul.

Spartan Precision Custom:

Unfired. Built by Spartan Precision when they were up in Nor Cal. Surgeon 591 action and bottom metal, bartlein 18” 1:10 m40 contour, McMillan A1-3 stock, timney trigger
Includes;
x2 Magpul 5 round magazines
x2 Magpul 10 round magazines
x2 AICS 5 round magazines
Triad tactical stock pack
 

Strzelec

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redneckbmxer24

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  • Jan 15, 2005
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    Kinda extreme ends of the spectrum but I wouldn’t buy any of them. Remington is garbage anymore and an 18” 308 isn’t exactly the pinnacle of LR shooting performance.

    There’s a lot of decent 6.5 Creedmoor rifles in the $1000 range. I’d buy one of those and then splurge on an optic to get started.
     

    NewsShooter

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    Buy a Tikka CTR and put it in a KRG bravo chassis. Better than either of those Remington choices. Also get a 6.5, not a .308, better ballistics, less recoil. For 3800 you can have a rifle and a nice scope, rings and bipod.
     

    Fred @ Bison Tactical

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  • May 18, 2012
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    Buy a Sig Cross instead, or find another used option that is better. I would suggest going to Factory route over a custom route for your first rifle, learn to shoot with a decent factory rifle to identify where your having problems (and what you may want to change) before you jump into the custom world. With a factory rifle (decent one that is new) you can always sell it and get most of your money out - just resist the urge to customize the factory rifle. With the custom ones, you will be harder pressed to get your money because many people want different odds and ends in their rifle, and that one will be custom to you (or someone else if you buy it used)...
     
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    nn8734

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    If you’re thinking about spending $3800 or so, id consider an AI AT, especially if you find you want to dump it to recoup the funds later.

    Mark builds great rifles as well so you can’t go wrong in terms of performance but the high end factory stuff tends to holds value a little better than customs for the reasons @Fred @ Bison Tactical mentioned above.
     

    Strzelec

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    Jun 7, 2022
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    I’m trying to consolidate calibers. I have a Scar 17s so that’s why I was thinking .308

    My LGS has a few of these in stock:

    Sig Sauer Cross .308 Win 16" Rifle First Light Cipher Camo​


    …maybe I will check them out.
     
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    roostercogburn98

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    Buy whatever makes you happy, won’t be able to do that for much longer
     
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    redneckbmxer24

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    I’m trying to consolidate calibers. I have a Scar 17s so that’s why I was thinking .308

    My LGS has a few of these in stock:

    Sig Sauer Cross .308 Win 16" Rifle First Light Cipher Camo​


    …maybe I will check them out.

    A light rifle intended more as a hunting rifle also isn’t a smart route for a precision bolt gun especially for a beginner.

    I’d suggest doing a bunch more research and not letting your money burn a hole in your pocket. Then once you’ve done your research buy what best fits your needs and don’t just limit yourself to what’s on a local dealers shelves.
     

    StrayDog

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    Prioritize scope choice over rifle choice, my $0.02.
     

    pineoak

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    I'd prioritize BOTH. Stupid to have an accurate rifle but not be able to see the target clearly or have a scope that isn't tracking accurately. Also stupid to have top tier glass that allows you to see the target perfectly, but the gun is unreliable or not accurate. Terrible experience and waste of $ on ammo either way.

    don't have to spend $$$ to get quality.

    $$ will suffice.
     

    redneckbmxer24

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    I'd prioritize BOTH. Stupid to have an accurate rifle but not be able to see the target clearly or have a scope that isn't tracking accurately. Also stupid to have top tier glass that allows you to see the target perfectly, but the gun is unreliable or not accurate. Terrible experience and waste of $ on ammo either way.

    don't have to spend $$$ to get quality.

    $$ will suffice.

    Regardless how he goes he can’t do a lot better than that silly 18” Spartan build for $3800.

    Lots of great $2K optics. Razor HD’s can be had for $1800 all day long and that leaves $2K for a rifle. $2K can do a budget semi custom build with a nice action and prefit or just buy an off the shelf $1K rifle like a Bergara and have $1K left over for ammo and acc’s.
     

    NewsShooter

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    If you're going to go .308 get a longer barrel, speed is your friend. You aren't going to get much from a short barrel. Also, what do you consider long range? 600 yards, 1000?
     

    Brym427

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    Buy an ai or tacops and dont look back
     

    STXLeroy

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    Action, $900. Barrel $400. Timney trigger $210. Used stock, $500. Find a gunsmith that will just charge labor for chambering/bedding/threading.. if he's worth a shit you'll have a full custom that will outshoot pretty much any of the production guns. That's what I did for my 6mm BR. And she's a hammer.
     

    hafejd30

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    If you want to spend $3800 on a rifle then AI AT is hands down what I’d get. Post 2014 with the quickloc and SFP. After owning my couple AI’s there’s no way I’d spend $3k+ on anything based off a Rem 700. Totally different animal. And yes I’ve owned stiller custom and GA Precision customs as well

    Keep optic price in mind. I’d top with a NF ATACR, S&B or ZCO which you can find decent priced in the px here. Same for the rifle
     

    TheBigCountry

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    I voted for the Spartan. It actually looks decent; I think Frank has done some decent shooting with an 18” 308 (think Gladius)

    but….

    For the same money you can get into a used AI AT. I snagged one from MileHigh, that came with two barrels, for a few more dollars then the Spartan.
     

    Strzelec

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    Got some more pics of the Spartan. I think I’ll stick to .308 for my first precision rifle.

    The Spartan weighs in at 10lbs 6oz. Based on some rifles I looked at in the classified section here, that weight doesn’t seem extreme.

    To answer a couple of questions from above, I think I’ll be hard pressed to shoot much past 500-600 yards. I would love to make it out to a range offering longer distances but, realistically, that’s not going to happen too often…unless I catch the bug and this becomes my thing I suppose.

    I noticed a lot of “I only shot a few rounds to zero and it’s been sitting in the safe since” comments in the classifieds, so I worry about that.

    I’m all about buy once, cry once.

    My FFL had a Scar 20S in .308 in FDE yesterday (sold within a couple of hours) and I was considering that as well, but I like the idea of a bolt gun…already have a bunch of ARs and AKs.

    Bottom line is, I’m realizing I know nothing about the long range game.

    I’m also stoked to find this site. I appreciate everyone who responded to this thread, and everyone who PM’ed me, and especially the fact that nobody ridiculed me for being such a noob.
     

    Fred @ Bison Tactical

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    If your only shooting 500-600 and the targets aren't small, you can do that with a semi. If you want to learn long range, get a better rifle that is a bolt action of some kind. Pick a longer barrel for more velocity and something that is accurate. Weight is normally your friend as is a good brake. I think many of the responses agree that Spartan seems a bit highly valued, and you can accomplish what your trying for for less money. You also need a good scope. I would much rather spend more on the scope and less on the rifle since I can't engage my targets without the scope.
     

    Fred @ Bison Tactical

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    just a general rule of thumb to remember estimate spending around the same value as the rifle on your scope - which is why people are telling you to remember the cost of the scope when your thinking about this. This is just a rule of thumb - and you can certainly get away with less, just don't go cheap on your scope a lot of people throw a cheap $300 scope on their precision rifle after spending a chunk of money on the rifle thinking that is the main factor. Your better off getting a less accurate rifle IMO (and maybe less expensive) and a more expensive scope so you can see what your shooting at.
     

    Highbrass

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    Just my .02
    A bighorn Origin action gives you a lot of options. Easy barrel and caliber changes. Use remington triggers. Remington footprint. Savage barrels are easy to swap and cheap. You WILL want to make changes...make it easy. Plenty of good affordable optics, just decide what you want to spend.
    With this setup it gives you options to be able to spend more or less, and decide what you like and what, you dont...
     

    Fred @ Bison Tactical

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    Just my .02
    A bighorn Origin action gives you a lot of options. Easy barrel and caliber changes. Use remington triggers. Remington footprint. Savage barrels are easy to swap and cheap. You WILL want to make changes...make it easy. Plenty of good affordable optics, just decide what you want to spend.
    With this setup it gives you options to be able to spend more or less, and decide what you like and what, you dont...
    $875 in stock with us as well right now :) It's also a less expensive but still really nice choice.

     

    DownhillFromHere

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    View attachment 7887336View attachment 7887337View attachment 7887338View attachment 7887339View attachment 7887340View attachment 7887341View attachment 7887342Got some more pics of the Spartan. I think I’ll stick to .308 for my first precision rifle.

    The Spartan weighs in at 10lbs 6oz. Based on some rifles I looked at in the classified section here, that weight doesn’t seem extreme.

    To answer a couple of questions from above, I think I’ll be hard pressed to shoot much past 500-600 yards. I would love to make it out to a range offering longer distances but, realistically, that’s not going to happen too often…unless I catch the bug and this becomes my thing I suppose.

    I noticed a lot of “I only shot a few rounds to zero and it’s been sitting in the safe since” comments in the classifieds, so I worry about that.

    I’m all about buy once, cry once.

    My FFL had a Scar 20S in .308 in FDE yesterday (sold within a couple of hours) and I was considering that as well, but I like the idea of a bolt gun…already have a bunch of ARs and AKs.

    Bottom line is, I’m realizing I know nothing about the long range game.

    I’m also stoked to find this site. I appreciate everyone who responded to this thread, and everyone who PM’ed me, and especially the fact that nobody ridiculed me for being such a noob.
    Please, please don't spend $3800 on a rifle that is NOT suited to long-range precision. It's an overpriced hunting rifle. At 10 pounds, its about 2/3 - 1/2 the weight of most of the rifles you'd see at matches. The 18" barrel will limit the velocity of whatever centerfire cartridge caliber you choose - if you're a buy-once-cry-once guy, you'll almost certainly cry twice when you learn more about this "long range game." I'm not sure why you want to stay with .308 when 6.5CM is so common and is unquestionably superior wrt long-range ballistics... but certainly there's nothing wrong with .308 per se - certainly, its barrel life is FAR superior to 6.5CM and especially the hot 6's. But, once again, I'd bet you'll change your mind after you learn more.

    For factory rifles, it's hard to beat the Tikka T3X family for accuracy and function - but the plastic stocks are horrible. I started the precision rifle game with a T3X TAC A1 in 6.5CM - awesome buy-it-and-go-compete turnkey solution - mounted with a first-gen Vortex Razor 5-20 scope. Then I bought a T3X Varmint in .223 and put it in an MDT LSS-XL chassis and stuck a 2nd-gen Vortex Viper PST on it. I thoroughly enjoyed those rifles for about 18 months before I sold them in favor of R700-footprint customs. The customs aren't any more accurate than the Tikkas. They're just more adjustable and... different.

    As has been mentioned, the choice of optic is as important as the rifle. if you're truly a buy-once... guy, my personal advice would be to buy a scope in the $2000 range (think Vortex Razor gen-2 4.5-27x56 or similar, whose usual street price is $2500 but can be found easily for less than that, especially used) - or even more. Many people start with scopes more in the Vortex Viper PST tier at around $1000... but if they get serious they end up upgrading pdq. Good glass can move with you as your rifle preferences evolve (well, scope preference will evolve too).

    I'm not sure there's a buy-once-cry-once solution. Your preferences change as you learn. Just keep in mind that, in addition to the rifle and optic, there will be ancillary gear like a bipod, bags, and all manner of other trinkets you don't even know exist yet which will consume several hundred more dollars. Budget accordingly.

    If I had to choose one single rifle and associated gear, right now, and get rid of all the others? I think I'd keep my Vudoo .22 and move it from MPA BA Comp chassis to one of my MDT ACCs, followed by my .223 built on Terminus Apollo action with Trigger Tech Diamond and Bartlein 5R 1:7 barrel in MDT ACC chassis. The latter is easily match-capable out to 900 yards or more with 75gr bullets, more if I used the best 90-grain heavies - which I would do if I didn't have two other rifles in 6.5CM. I shoot the .223 FAR more than the 6.5s because I'm cheap that way.

    Good luck.