.223 bolt action decision - Weatherby V S2 HB RC vs. Browning X-bolt SR

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by styles, Mar 9, 2017.

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  1. styles

    styles Member

    Apr 11, 2007
    I am pretty much resolved to choosing a .223 bolt action for casual bench shooting between the Weatherby Vanguard H-BAR RC and the Browning X-Bolt CF SR.

    I have searched and researched, but feel even though I am aware of some of the quirks of both rifles many are similar (for instance, quality of the factory stocks.)

    I'm leaning towards the Browning because of the 60* bolt throw (it's a touch more expensive) and having shot a Weatherby I kept banging my knuckles against the scope.

    I think accuracy would be about the same. I do not handload 223. So, I'm realistic about my abilities and the rifle's. I'm looking for general accuracy in a shorter, med-hvy contour barrel that I can shoot a lot of rounds with (to me maybe 50 rounds a week) to learn/improve my rifle skills.

    I would like a factory barrel pre-threaded for a suppressor as I am already pretty weak of hearing and double-up ear plugs and ear muffs. I would like to drop the plugs as they are uncomfortable.

    I can afford something nicer/better like an FNH SPR, but it's capabilities would probably be wasted on me for some time and although I can get to a 200 yard range, I will mostly be shooting the SR-1 and SR-21 targets at 100 yards.

    Anyone have an opinion or experience they want to share or wave-off one of these choices?

    I would appreciate any input. Thanks!
  2. claiborne

    claiborne Member

    Sep 24, 2006
    I am not familiar with either of those rifles. I have had 4 or 5 different .223 bolt rifles. I have one left; it is a keeper. I have been very satisfied with my Kimber Longmaster Classic for 10 years now. It is a great informal bench gun for shooting eggs, oranges, charcoal, dead twigs off of trees, or whatever else I feel like shooting with it.
    I kindly suggest you look at that rifle if you insist on CRF like I do.
  3. CoalTrain49

    CoalTrain49 Member

    Jan 10, 2014
    Somewhere in WA.
    I have a Howa .223. Weatherby uses their barreled actions. These are great rifles. When I was looking for a bolt gun Browning was also on my short list. 60° bolt is a nice feature, I believe Tikka has one also.

    Personally I could buy any of those three rifles so that's going to be a tough call. One thing that you already know is to get a heavy barrel for benchrest. The light contour barrels are great for the first 3 shots. After that the POI starts drifting due to heat. Easy to see with a 1 MOA rifle. They just aren't very good benchrest barrels.

    I think my preference would be the Weatherby H-bar only because I know the quality and the fact that it would be a 1 MOA rifle. The others are probably the same.

    I shoot my Howa a lot. The accuracy is amazing.
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2017
  4. Sunray

    Sunray Member

    May 17, 2003
    London, Ont.
    One commercial hunting rifle is pretty much the same as the next. After that it's about your budget.
    If you hearing is already bad, there's nothing you can do about it. So a threaded barrel won't matter.
    "...banging my knuckles against the scope..." That's about how you grab the bolt. Try not actually grabbing it, but come up from underneath with the middle of your palm on the knob and let it roll in your palm. Easier to do than describe.
    "...Howa .223. Weatherby uses..." Howa makes the Vanguard for Weatherby. Has since before.
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