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Thoughts on a 6.8 Bolt Action Build

5511 Views 9 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  Capt_Jerry
I am thinking about building a 6.8 bolt action to compliment my three AR platform builds. Been looking at Savage and X-Caliber barrels since H's are available anymore.

I have a few questions for those of you who have gone this route:
  • What Model Savage to use?
  • Bolt Head (Pacific Tool) ?
  • Accuracy?
  • Magazine modiication?

Basically it is a pricey option to a point. Is it really worth it just to have one in the arsenal? My AR-P barreled 6.8's are very accuate and have put meat on the table.

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I thought about it but decided against it. If I had one of the mini Mauser or similar actions I'd be more inclined to do it, but in a standard short action it just didn't make sense for me. I could chamber a full length SA round with minimal cost in weight and recoil. I don't have kids or recoil sensitive shooters to worry about so the trade off of more recoil/weight for extended range and effectiveness works for me.
With three ARs chambered in 6.8 and no actual need for the 6.8 bolt, I would choose another short action caliber. Say 308 or 7-08. If I add another to the arsenal it usually is something I don't already have or something I really want just because I can :a26:
I got 2 of the ARP savage 6.8 Blems awhile back and put one on a Savage Edge. I still have to get a stock for it but it shoots decent for a thrown together job. Good thing is i have a spare barrel :D
  • What Model Savage to use? Any short action will work.
  • Bolt Head (Pacific Tool) ? PTG will work, I got one from MCA here on the forum. Otherwise any local gunsmith should be able to open up a 223 bolt head.
  • Accuracy? Some factory loads, and loads I worked up in my AR15: http://68forums.com/forums/showthread.php?59289-Todays-range-trip
  • Magazine modiication? 223 magazine with the feed lips spread to .350-.370" worked the best. I can load out to 2.44" using this magazine.
We need to start bugging H about making another batch of Savage barrels from Triad blanks.
Built mine on a Axis action with a AR Performance barrel and MCA bolt. Accuracy is good with handloads I have worked up factory loads did fairly good. Most stuck right around moa or slightly less a few opened up but were still acceptable for what I do. Opened up lips on a 223 mag and closed them on a 308 both do good with some tweaking. Great gun for the boys to use all day at the range.
I used a Hog Hunter in 308, but just because I got a really good deal on one other wise I would have picked one a 223 with a detachable mag.

The Bolt I also acquired from MCA too, which he used a standard 223 bolt and it came without internals.

Accuracy one ragged hole using one of H's Blem barrels. Note I get about 100 FPS faster than my 20" Stag using the same exact load, cannot complain about that faster and more accurate.

Mag Mod still working on that one, trying to decide weather to ditch the stock and go chassis or go bottom metal and go with a detachable mag. Right now it is a single loader which is fine for what I use it for, plinking. However this project is on hold while I am in a rush for suppressors and SBR's before 41F goes into effect.
Need to push HOWA to add 6.8 to their "mini action" rifle line up.
My Savage/ARP Axis has become my favorite deer rifle.

I used the 308 size magazine and pressed the feed lips together to get it to hold the 6.8 cases. Others have expressed a preference for the 223 mag ... either one can be made to work I guess.
Thanks for the info gang, a lot of very helpful facts. I just am old school and like my bolt action rifles and wheel guns even though I have a "few" AR platforms and semi-auto pistols. I have .243, .270, and .300 mag in my bolt action collection. As I have mentioned my 6.8 AR's have put meat in the freezer without fail. I love the 6.8 cartridge as for most of my hunting is 325 yards max and under. I have taken a whitetail at 305 yards with my 16" and have experienced the rounds true ability. Of course I have plenty of 95 grain TTSX's and LT-32 plus brass waiting for a test in a new toy.

I'll probably hold off for a while and see if I can snag one of H's barrels somewhere and find a deal on a 'donor rifle'. Maybe we'll get lucky and he'll do another run.:p
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