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DG rifle/action hybrids?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by sig45elite, May 3, 2012.

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  1. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    :confused:Hi, I am trying to decide between 4 rifles/makes for a dangerous game rifle to be used in AK. and Africa.
    I want open sights and will mount a TR24G: AccuPoint 1-4x24 30mm Riflescope with BAC, Green Triangle Reticle.

    The guns are CZ Safari Classic Custom Shop Magnum Express; the Sako 85 Kodiak; the Weatherby Mark V Dangerous Game Custom(would've chose their Safari Custom but at 2x the price, for what seems to just be a wood stock over composite???); and last but certainly not least at double to triple the cost of the others; the McMillan Prestige DG Custom Rifle, all in .375 H&H.

    Three of them seem to be this sort of "hybrid" version of a controlled round feed (CRF) or hybrid between that and a push feed (PF) action, the McMillan Prestige, Sako 85 Kodiak and the Weatherby DG Custom?
    The CZ Safari Classic Express, I know is a classic Mauser type CRF.

    I think the 3 rifles, other than the CZ, are slicker rifles, with better "fit & finish", certainly the McMillan at $6500. is a true hand built & honed custom shop gun, as is to a lesser degree, the Weatherby.
    Sako is a production gun, I believe, and the CZ "Safari Classic: is partially "custom shop" as I spoke to the shop and they said in .375 H&H (as oppose to larger more custom calibers) the gun is mad in Czechoslovakia just like the cheaper CZ550, and then a better stock and barrel band plus for the .375, shorten the barrel to 20".
    But kinda scary (CZ custom shop guy) when they do not even know that gun has the barrel shortened to 20" hence along with new stock & swivel, the $1400.up-charge.

    The CZ and Sako is in the same price range ($2k-2.5k) , the Weatherby $3300-3500(w/options) and the McMillan is way more @ $6650., but looks like a terrific hi-tech functional work of art.

    Of course...there is this traditionalist "true" CRF ONLY for DG vs. PF or it doesn't matter "thing"...???
    I don't know?

    What say you?
    Thanks
     
  2. 56hawk

    56hawk Member

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    Well, I have a Weatherby Mark V in 460, and am having a custom rifle built on a CZ 550 magnum action. The Weatherby is a really nice rifle, I bought mine used for about half the price of a new one. The CZ is just the action, but it's nowhere near the Weatherby in terms of fit and finish.

    As far as CRF vs PF. I really don't care. All of my bolt action rifles have worked flawlessly. Personally though if I was going to get a 375 H&H it would probably be a Winchester Model 70. You don't need the bigger actions for that size round and the Winchester is about half the price. And it's also a CRF.
     
  3. Robert

    Robert Moderator Staff Member

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    I will second the vote for the Mod70. A very accomplished dangerous game hunting friend of mine highly recommends them. The new models have the CRF which he requires for a true dangerous game rifle. And seeing as he has been to Africa more times than I have been to New Mexico I tend to take his word on such matters. But that his opinion so you may take it as you like.
     
  4. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    May just get the Weatherby DG Custom in .375 H&H...it is 1/2 the cost of the McMillan, however that McMillan "Prestige" is a cool piece of Hi-tech work, for sure...just not sure I want to spend $6650.
     
  5. 56hawk

    56hawk Member

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    I think the Weatherby Dangerous Game rifle would be a great choice. Would have got one myself except I found a used custom shop gun first. Thought I would throw in some gratuitous photos:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     

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  6. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    [Quote containing the 3 large pictures from previous post removed by moderator.]

    Niiiiice...nice!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2012
  7. DM~

    DM~ Member

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    Considering how OVER PRICED the Wby's are for not that much quality, i'd MUCH rather have a NEW Winchester too.

    Of your posted choises, i'd grab the Mc Millian, as AT LEAST you are getting precision and QUALITY, even if it cost a lot...

    DM
     
  8. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    The Winchester & Remington were not on my list for this OP ( or anytime), due to the fact that the quality of new Wins & Rems are not what they used to be...kinda suck, however, Weatherby is better than ever, and I admit that I don't know much about CZ's and Sakos and have heard of McMillan, of course, mostly for their stocks, and spoke to them yesterday about the rifle.

    I don't know, the Weatherby is half the price of the McMillan and is very accurate, Weatherbys are usually very good "shooters" and how much precision do I need for a DGR, my shots will be under 100 yds.
     
  9. Loosedhorse

    Loosedhorse member

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    I'm surprised there's not more love for the CZ 550.

    BTW, OP, why not get the "standard" cheaper CZ for about $1200? Or a laminate stock for about $200 more?

    True, you may have to get a smith to glass bed, smooth the action, shorten barrel, re-install express sights, reblue, replace the barrel band--but you've got $1100-1300 of smithing money before you get to $2500.

    That's what I did. If it matters, you'll have trouble finding another DG rifle with a magazine capacity of 5.

    Controlled feed all the way. Look at this article, if you will.

    Also: why not the Ruger Alaskan Hawkeye in either .375 or .416?
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  10. DM~

    DM~ Member

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    I guess you haven't looked at the NEW model 70's... As far as i'm concerned, they are better than any model 70 in the past, and yes i know you didn't have them on your list.

    AND no i don't have a model 70 now... but i have owned several Wby. mark V's, and i'm not impressed at all. They are an over priced production gun.

    You brought up Reminghton, so i'll add: I hunted all over Alaska for 25 years, much of it for big bears, and my "brown bear" rifle was/is a old 700 Remington chambered in .338-06. It will and HAS shot corner to corner in more than one brown bear, anchoring them on the spot.

    It never failed me in any way over all the years and i drug it through the worst brush/alders/tundra you ever saw, cleaning up someone elses mistakes!

    Lastly, i'd order a NULA if i was in the mind for a custom gun today... In fact i did just that a couple months ago.

    DM
     
  11. Silent Sam

    Silent Sam Member

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    "Also: why not the Ruger Alaskan Hawkeye in either .375 or .416?"

    I know it's not on your list but a stock Ruger with a few extra bucks to get it sorted out for DG and then spend the remainder on ammo and shoot it is what I would do.
     
  12. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    "Also: why not the Ruger Alaskan Hawkeye in either .375 or .416"
    Because .375H&H is available everywhere and is all the caliber I would need for anything.

    I have been told (this CRF vs. PF was not the primary focus of my OP...was the rifles, I fall more into the "it doesn't matter"...camp, last line of my OP)...by the guys at McMillan, Weatherby, Blaser etc., that that "CRF for DGR, ONLY" is a bunch of horseshiate, great DG & BIG 5 hunters have used both to great effect?
     
  13. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    You said "OLD" Rem700, I said I was "hearing" that the new ones & co. are not so good?
     
  14. Loosedhorse

    Loosedhorse member

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    Some hunters have used handguns and arrows to great effect on DG. The question becomes: what were their guides or PHs carrying to back them up?
    If they can afford them, professional hunters of DG in Africa use double rifles. Those that can't afford them use bolt-actions. I have never heard or read a PH recommend a push-feed over a controlled-feed bolt-action for DG.

    If your conclusion is that those PHs are all full of __________, well, there you go.
    Why would anyone marketing a push-feed rifle say something else is better?

    Interesting: some say controlled feed is better (or absolutely required) for DG, some say both are equivalent. Who says that push feed is better for DG, or absolutely required?

    If no one, does that tell us anything?
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  15. DM~

    DM~ Member

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    Yes i did, and it was deliberate as i understood your distinction of new and old 700's. I tell it exactly as i see and experience it, and i want to keep my post accurate and truthful.

    Now, you need to check out the difference between NEW, old and older Winchesters, with older being pre 64's.

    DM
     
  16. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    Listen, I am not arguing for one over the other...just that those that know more than me and have taken DG from Ak to Kenya have said they did it with their Rem700 and the like, and BTW, McMillan makes BOTH actions and he told me IT DOES NOT MATTER, both go BANG and kill'em and both can jam if not used right. In fact, I have tried to do what some say may happen with a PF if you short stroke and could not, that plunger ejecter throws out that spent case before the extractor can load a new one from the mag, so???
    If you do not bring the bolt fully back with a CRF that fixed ejector won't eject and you can end up firing on an empty and worse, so I do not see it?
    Push feeds also cycle upside down too.
     
  17. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    Other than 56hawk above, who thinks the Mark V DGR would be a "great choice", most here think the Weatherbys suck? Millions sold, well we are talk'n DGR here, so quite different story, I guess...than shooting deer & elk.

    I posted this thread on another forum some here may be familiar with, the 24 Hr. Campfire and they really seem to dislike the Weatherby there, at the very least, most say that ALL the PHs and Pro Guides loath the Weatherbys and Remington, saying they have NO place in Africa and for DG. Then you have all these guys in AK who say they have been hunting for 40 yrs. and taken dozens of Grizzly & Browns with BDLs 700's and the like...and CRF is hogwash, they all go "BOOM" and kill'em dead.

    When I talked to McMillan, he said the same and he makes both actions, but for his DGR both the Prestige & Heritage, he uses a CRF just NOT a "Mauser" CFR???
    Sako too, says right on the website, theirs is a CRF for the Kodiak & Brown Bear or ALL their rifles, I believe???
     
  18. finnwolf64

    finnwolf64 Member

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    There is not a bad choice amongst the rifles you list. Pick the one that you like & fits you best, rather than worrying about what other people may think.
    If you're planning hunting dangerous game in Alaska & Africa the price of the rifle shouldn't be your major concern.
    I've hunted South Africa & Zimbabwe a couple of times. I have also done a lot of culling work in Australia over some 30 years. I have always owned Sako centerfire rifles, which are not a Mauser CRF action. I've culled in dust, mud, snow & rain & have never had a feed issue with any of my Sako non Mauser type actions. If you have a reliable rifle that you use regularly at home(such as for culling), I don't see why travelling to Africa or hunting dangerous game all of a sudden makes these rifles unreliable.
    I'd actually pick a Sako Hunter over the Kodiak, only because I prefer wood/blued finish.
    The guy you mention that hunts Kenya must have a good memory - hunting has been banned in Kenya since the mid 1970's.
    You do see a lot of African hunting guides carrying old CZ/ Brno rifles.
     
  19. Loosedhorse

    Loosedhorse member

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    Sure. Just as those that know more than me say that DG have been taken with arrows. I just don't know how many people depend on archery to stop a wounded DG animal.

    If all you are concerned about is that first shot, then choose either rifle: it doesn't matter (unless you feel a push feed gives you greater accuracy--then go with that). The first shot is always going to be the most important.

    However, as mentioned in the article I linked (did you see it?), push feeds may have a distinct disadvantage--though perhaps rarely encountered--in the type of moving, swinging second and third shots that are sometimes needed.

    The "people who know more" than you and I do--including folks who make their living using the rifle as opposed to making it--don't ONLY say that it doesn't matter. Some of them say that controlled feed is the only way to go on a DG bolt-action.

    Which group you care to listen to is up to you. But it seems to me you've already decided. And that's fine: it's your decision.
    Must be old stories?
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2012
  20. sig45elite

    sig45elite member

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    Easy guys, Kenya was just my substitution for AFRICA, I know about Kenya, and since we are talking "tradition" here, and I am starting to suspect that the reason most PHs say "CRF" is that is what was around way back, Mausers, Winchesters,CZ / Brno and became the "standard" (for bolts, that is)?

    What do I know, I am an old deer & elk hunter, but have grown a bit tired of it and want more of a challenge now, and if I die trying, I die happy, doing what I love. However, I do want the best chance of success & survival, no death wish here, lol.
    Easy guys, Kenya was just my substitution for AFRICA, I know about Kenya, and since we are talking "tradition" here, and I am starting to suspect that the reason most PHs say "CRF" is that is what was around way back, Mausers, Winchesters,CZ / Brno and became the "standard" (for bolts, that is)?

    What do I know, I am an old deer & elk hunter, but have grown a bit tired of it and want more of a challenge now, and if I die trying, I die happy, doing what I love. However, I do want the best chance of success & survival, no death wish here, lol.
    Now I am looking at the Mausers,
    (the actual company; http://www.mauser.com/Rifles.61.0.html?&L=1 )
    ...and low & behold, along with their classic "Mauser action" rifles, now dubbed the M 98, they have a modern "action" (their words, not mine)
    "The Mauser brand has upheld this promise for generations. The legend continues in the M 03, which blends Mauser’s time-honored value with modern day technologies and high performance standards."

    And, if you want to, check this article out, presents the view of the opposing argument for CRF 4 DGR "only": http://africanxmag.com/new_thunder_in_the_bushveld.htm

    here is an excerpt ;"The M03 does not have the old Mauser M98 type non rotating long extractor. Instead, it has a spring loaded plunger ejector and the small hook-type extractor claw recessed into the bolt head typical for many modern rifles. Many of us have been somewhat brainwashed, believing that one is in grave danger and laying one’s life on the line facing dangerous game, if ones gun has not the claw-type Mauser-style extractor. Presumably feeding with a push feed action is not as positive when holding the rifle sideways or upside down.
    I have tried it out several times with my M03, holding it upside down or sideways and never encountered any feeding problem. Boddington, in his new book "Safari Rifles II", says on page 267 about comparing the push feed system with the Mod. 98 action: "Rarely is there a clear-cut disadvantage or advantage to either system, but it must be recognized that modern actions are stronger than any Mauser — and if an action is going to blow, a Mauser … or even a pre-64 Winchester will blow long before a … modern action"

    The money I will spend on the rifle, even at $6,000. or so (my limit 7k) pales in comparison to the $$$ for the hunts, so why not?
    Ok, so in that price range;

    Weatherby Custom shop Safari (PF)
    Mauser M 03 (PF)
    Mauser M 98 (CRF)
    AHR (American Hunting Rifles) Safari 550 DGR ( CZ/Brno CRF action )
    McMillan Prestige (non-Mauser CRF)

    Top 4 above come with real nice grade Walnut stocks, at least for the coin$
    the McMillan is a black synth stock, albeit a good one.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2012
  21. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    My personal choices in order from you list would be,

    1. AHR they are excellent rifles built on time proven actions for not to much money.
    4. Weatherby anything is dead last for me. I've had very poor luck with Weatherby rifles. Africans almost universally hate Weatherby's and tend to think poorly of the guy who bring them, they have a serious negative stigma in Africa. I haven't met to many Alaskan pros that will have anything to do with them either.

    The rest are an eclectic mix and I can't say one is better than the other. For instance "M-98 (CRF)" there is a HUGE wide array of M-98 variant rifles out there, some built on crapped out old military actions and shouldn't be trusted others are built on the finest new custom actions machined to the tightest standards with the toughest materials known to man like the Granite Mountain Action. I've never used any of these new CRPF so I can't comment on them.

    As far as PF vs CRF. I am a CRF man as are 99.9% of professional DG hunters in the world. As a client it probably isn't that big of deal especially if you are shooting a quality rifle be it CRF or PF.

    The main point of any DG rifle is that it's dead reliable I've used very few rifles for DG that didn't need some kind of tweaking or customization to make them reliable enough for me to trust them for serious DG work. So after you buy your new rifle take it out and shoot the piss out of it. I'm not talking about going to the range and putting 100 rounds through it from the bench. I'm talking about taking out in the field and getting it nasty dirty. Cycle the action as hard and fast as you can firing it as rapidly as you can at rocks or other targets of opportunity. Reload the magazine hard and fast then do it while moving. Let it ride in the truck with you uncased, let it get covered in dust then do the same. Generally after putting several hundred rounds through it in real life field conditions over a period of 6 months or so where you aren't babying it you'll find an issue or two that needs to be addressed. Take it out in the rain, take it out in the heat you'd be surprised how many rifles have issues when the temperature or humidity change. After some serious no BS use your rifle will be ready for a DG hunt.

    BTW if you can find a place to do feral hog hunting in mixed to heavy cover on foot is a very good simulation of the type of situations and abuse that your rifle will take in the field DG hunting.

    Here is a sensible recommendation on rifles for DG hunting.
    http://www.shakariconnection.com/african-hunting-rifles.html
     
  22. Loosedhorse

    Loosedhorse member

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    As H&H mentioned, I would have said it is not unusual for any rifle to need some smithing (and a lot of wringing out) to make it DG reliable. I'm not sure I can predict for you if you will fall into the "never encountered a feeding problem" group.

    I do notice that he said that his personal M03 has never had a feeding problem; perhaps he has also never seen any M03 have a feeding problem, or any good quality push-feed rifle have a feeding problem...but he didn't mention that.
    Does this mean that even though he has never seen his M03 misfeed, some of his recently made Mauser-type action rifles have blown up?

    If not, it's curious that he dismisses one potential deadly malfunction because it's never happened to him personally; but he emphasizes a different potentially deadly malfunction that has also never happened to him--why not dismiss that, too?

    To each his own.

    Perhaps it is worth noting that few of the favored African cartridges have operating pressures north of 62k psi; the .416 Rigby is down at around 47k. Weatherbys can be 65k, as is the .416 Remington Magnum. I've heard of bolts sticking closed with the .416 RM in African heat; if there's a rash of modern Mauser actions exploding, I missed it.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2012
  23. Boxhead

    Boxhead Member

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    I'd look for an older BRNO ZKK-602 375 H&H like this slightly tweaked one. A classic bullet-proof piece. If not, a Whitworth 375 H&H.

    348375Tony7002.jpg
     
  24. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    Nice rifle except the safety is on backwards...:)
     
  25. Hizzie

    Hizzie Member

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    Handled a Sako 85 the other day when I met the Gunny. Smooth like nothing else I've ever handled. Not a true CRF action though.

    Before you get one of the CZ Custom Shop 550's check out American Hunting Rifles http://hunting-rifles.com/CZ/CZowners.htm They are THE place to go for CZ550 work.
     
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