Best small bolt action


Brian Williams
March 3, 2009, 02:53 PM
I have this fantasy of owning a small single shot bolt action in 38 Spec, I want a small action with out a mag well that could be setup for a small cartridge like a 38 spec or maybe even 357 mag. I would like it with a 16.5" barrel and threaded for a suppressor. I would like to have a receiver sight and a nice ramp front. It would be a target/Woodchuck rifle with a max range of maybe 100 yds.
What company makes a small action like a Mini Mauser. I have thought about taking a Mini Mauser with a .223 bolt face and making either a 357 magnum or Maximum length cartridge out of 223 cases.

But the real dream is a single shot 38 spec.

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March 3, 2009, 04:59 PM
I'm not sure of the why a .38 special, but that's your business. Sako single shot action for 22ppc or 6ppc might work - at least the shell holder for .38 spec. is a nice fit on the ppc case and I know that because I just walked across the room and tried it. .4335" rim for .38; .4440" for the ppc. Yep, it'd work.

Brownell's WAS selling Sako actions, not sure if they still do that.

Brian Williams
March 3, 2009, 05:03 PM
a 38 Special is right between a 22lr and a larger center fire like a 257 Roberts or even a 30-06

March 3, 2009, 05:24 PM
Martini cadet rifle. Many were rechambered from the original .310 to .357.

March 3, 2009, 05:28 PM
A quick search turned up this example:

March 3, 2009, 05:31 PM
Oh. My. G*D! I've been secretly harboring that exact same dream gun for a while now!

I'd even pictured .38/.357 as the right caliber! My idea was that it would be a great mini rifle for the kids to train on -- better than a .22 for small game, suppressed for obvious reasons, subsonic ammo common and/or easy to make, even using heavy bullets.

I was thinking about going SBR with a Contender for this, as I'd also get into another gun that would be extremely flexible. And I could have stocks that were as short as the kids needed or as long as I wanted, with the greatest of ease.

Of course, I couldn't get this done for under $1000, probably, so it's a pipe dream for now. Maybe it's what my GRANDkids need!


March 3, 2009, 06:03 PM
Now that I've remembered a little I still have the reamer I had made to make a chamber using the 221 Fireball case with .30 caliber bullets. I even have a barrel here with the chamber cut and it's threaded to a Rem 700. I was going to build my hunter benchrest rifle over as a .30 Whisper.

Dang, I'd forgotten all about that unfinished project and all the makings are still here.

March 3, 2009, 06:17 PM
I plan on building the same thing only mine will be a supressed handi-rifle

March 3, 2009, 08:47 PM
Spanish Destroyer...Mine's in the original 9mm Largo, but many have been modded (open the bolt face) to .38 Super. Really cool little Mauser-type action. Plenty accurate... and fun!

March 3, 2009, 08:50 PM
But the CZ 527 can be made into a single shot and is da bomb as a mini mauser.

March 3, 2009, 09:03 PM
Whoops, my bad... Forgot he wanted a single shot...

March 3, 2009, 10:38 PM
Doesn't Uberti make a small frame rolling block in 38/357?

March 4, 2009, 02:02 AM
Thought you had a 357 Marlin. Too many shells to carry? I just got in a 308 handirifle. Red Dot 2 power scope 60 rounds in 6" bull at 100 yds right out of box. Going to send it in after elk season for a 12 guage and 357 barrel.($150)
Plan to use 125 gr jhp 38spl load in 357 case like i use in 357 Win Trapper. Devastating out to 100 on coyote/feral dog and almost silent. I could have used one in the army.


Stobor ain't so bad, as I remember they kill off politicians even if they can't quite bring themselves to eat one

March 4, 2009, 02:34 AM
I have an 1885 lo wall in 357 mag. I love it. Contender, NEF, and Martini come to mind. Ruger 44 model 77 would give you an action. I don't know how much you want to get into the project but it could be a start. Savage 340 over and under was also done in a 357 but they are rare.


Brian Williams
March 4, 2009, 09:54 AM
I have a Marlin 1894, I am looking at something that would be a great post 22lr trainer. Train on a 22, train on a 38 special then the superboomerultrahellndamnation magnums would be easier.
I wish that any gun manufacturers would look at the small end of things like the 218 bee, 22 hornet and others for small game as I think that the 22lr for all that it is is not good enough. If some of the gun manufacturers would forget about blowing massive holes at incredible ranges and look for those small games rifles similar to the Rook rifle in England.

The Ruger 44/77 might be a great place to start.

My wife would probably shoot what I am talking about but never a superdeeduperMAGNUM


March 4, 2009, 10:21 AM
I like the idea of using .38 Spc. as kind of a junior .45-70 and having a scaled down Sharps or something that really fit the round would be elegant.

Sort of like Peter Hofer's Hummingbird double rifle:

And it probably wouldn't cost 1/2 of that! :what:


Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
March 4, 2009, 10:30 AM
I don't know if this helps, but one of my dream guns is *similar*, but chambered in .338 Spectre instead of .38 spl or .357 mag. It's like a .357 maximum in power, except with much heavier bullets going slower with far better BCs & SDs, and quieter than a .357 magnum. I'm planning to build it on a Savage / Stevens .223 sized action, but come to think of it, an even lighter rifle with a single shot receiver would be even better. But I want a bolt action, for maximum quietness when suppressed.

Oh, and the .338 spectre is .357 maximum power when in subsonic loadings, but you can load it UP to .35 Herrett levels if you want.

March 4, 2009, 10:57 AM
Try it with a 44. You can load light for the kids and subsonic supressed. Then load heavier and have a 75 yd whitetail round.

March 4, 2009, 11:04 AM
the cz 527 carbine in 762x39 is the best, just use the single shot piece.
But do you want the best, really? It is not a single shot, but they are out there, as a tube fed.
It is the old, all steel, levermatic, called the marlin mod 56. not only was the action so strong for a rimfire, they made it also in 22 mag, 30 carbine, and 256 winchester, which is like a 25.20 with a short case. They are sooooo cool!!!!
otherwise, find a nef or rossi, or remington / baikalspr 12 , all single shots, in 762x39.

Brian Williams
March 4, 2009, 02:57 PM
otherwise, find a nef or rossi, or remington / baikalspr 12 , all single shots, in 762x39.
You missed the point that I want a small, lightweight, low case capacity, simple rifle, a 7.62x39 is too big.

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