Remington Model 700 XCR Tactical Long Range 300 Win Mag

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Bad News -
I thoroughly cleaned the 300 last night with Barnes CR-10 copper solvent and Kroll oil. Afterwards I decided to take the rifle apart for the first time and continue my cleaning a bit more.  Don't ask me why I thought this was necessary but now I'm regretting the decision. After reassembling the action & stock I proceeded to check the float of the barrel by running a piece of paper the barrel and the stock. Unfortunately the paper wouldn't go in at all and I was furious. I tried several more times after loosening, adjusting and retightening the action but to no avail. So currently my barrel is not free-floating as it should so my accuracy is going to be crap until I find a remedy which is incredibly frustrating.

Wasn't impressed with the fit & finish of the barrel to stock from the beginning as you can see it's not stellar. 

Good News - 
First this this morning I called up Remington to get some answers. After waiting on hold for 5-10 minutes I spoke with an associate in repairs named Andrew. I told him the whole story about taking it apart and reassembling only to find that my barrel was no longer floating.

I also told him that when I purchased the rifle in 2008 I took it home and after a thorough inspection I wasn't impressed at all with the fit and finish of the stock around the barrel. On the right side the space between the barrel and stock was about 1/32 of an inch whereas the left side was about 1/8" of an inch. I took it back to Gunnies in Orem where I bought it and explained. They said that as long as a dollar bill can easily be passed between the two it should have no effect on the accuracy. At that point we tested it and though the dollar came out a bit dirty, it did indeed slide between the two without a problem.  Being still unimpressed with the fit and finish of my brand new $1200 rifle that supposedly is Remington top of line and has one of the best aftermarket stocks on the market I asked if I could swap it out for another one, given that it was unfired.  Unfortunately they had only ordered one in 300 Win Mag and it took over 4 months to arrive so getting another one was going to be a long process.  After already waiting so long I wasn't about to do that. In hindsight I wish I had being it took me 3 yrs to save enough to buy the scope I wanted and finally be able to shoot the rifle. At the time I had the intention of selling the original stock anyways and getting another that was even more target/tactical in it's design and features such as the McMillan A-5 or A-4 or the Bell & Carlson A-5 Medalist that comes on the Model 700 XCR Target Tactical .308

McMillan A-5 

McMillan A- 4 (Thicker Forend)

Bell & Carlson A - 5 Medalist

After my story Andrew took the serial number for the rifle and after a few minutes said that he would have a new stock to me in 2-3 weeks as well as return postage for my current one so I could send it back. I was impressed. They hardly asked any questions and just took care of business. The only remark I have would be that 2-3 weeks is a rather long time in today's ultra competitive market. I think they could get it to me in a week if they really wanted to but I'm just happy that they had such a great "no-none-sense" approach to my problem.

I'll update when the new stock arrives in a couple weeks. Hopefully this one

Great Customer Service at Remington - Thanks Andrew.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Home-Made Steel Target Testing

Steel is hands-down my haven't target material but if buying pre-maid targets is very expensive.  After spending some considerable time searching forums I discovered steel target vendor that stood out from the rest - Las Vegas Steel Targets. Here's a video from their website of one of their innovative reactive steel targets.

The down side to these amazing targets is obviously the price. At this point I just can't justify $2-300 for a target so last week Eddie and I visited several scrap yards and metal retailers in search for a do-it-yourself alternative. The first metal yard had a huge selection of scrap as well as a whole section of pre-cut target sized pieces of varying sizes and thickness. Apparently they had seen guys like us before and had exactly what we were looking for, specifically a 1/2" thick by 18" diameter circular steel plate as well as some smaller 10" & 12" square and circular versions. The downside once again was the price. The 18" plate was nearly $50 which isn't horrible but it was only 1/2"which we weren't certain would withstand a 300 Win Mag at less than 500 yards. We did find several thicker 3/4" and 1"+ plates but the price was $.55 to $.60 per pound just like the 18" plate but heavier. Once again we were looking at $50+ and thought we could do better.

At the second location, more of a scrap yard than a retail metal lot like the other we found a much smaller selection but we loved the $.40 per pound price for any scrap metal regardless of thickness. We settled on two 3/4" thick by 12" in diameter plates for $8.00 each which we thought was a "steal."'

From there I spent an hour at home depot deciding on something like a saw horse to hang it from. My initial thought was a foldable steel saw horse but at $30+ for the heavy version with adjustable legs and $18 for a light weight non adjustable version I found myself wanting the heavy adjustable version but only wanting to spend $18.  I also realize that if placed on a hill which is likely going to be the case I would need the adjustable legs. In the end I bought neither and instead had a much better idea that was lighter, sturdier, cheaper, adjustable and packs away very compact.

Home Depot
- $6.50 for three 4 ft pre-cut lengths of rebar
- $3 for 3 ft of chain for hanging
- $3 for a roll of tie wire to lash legs together & mount plate to chain. (already had some)

Here is what I came up with -

I was extremely proud of my home-made steel target and stand for less than $20. 

Unfortunately, I was banking on the steel being more than adequate to withstand the 300 Win Mag at 200+ yards but I was sorely mistaken. After the first shot I could see through the scope that there was much more than a black splatter left on the plate, even at 250 yard it looked like a crater.  I couldn't believe that the hole left behind nearly went all the way through the plate and was big enough to put my index finger in with room to spare.  


My hope was that this steel was the the AR 500 that I read about in the forums or at least something close to it but based on the result I am now certain that it is just standard rolled steel and that even with the steel swinging it still was no match for the 300 Win Mag at 250 yards.

Back of plate protrudes from 300 Win Mag hit. Would have blown thru a 1/2" plate. 

The larger holes are 300 Win Mag, the smaller & more shallow are .308 Win (far left edge & center of mass right) 

The setup. 68 gr of Win 760 pushing 168 gr Speer BTHP at 3150 fps. 

A look through the Nightforce NXS 5.5 - 22 x 56 mm with NP-R2 Reticle at 250 yds. (22 x shown) 

The moral of the story - 
If you're going to make a steel target for large caliber rifles you have to use AR steel which is very expensive (approximately $1200 for 4' x 8' sheet) or buy your targets pre-made from Las Vegas Steel Targets (link is above.) 

As for us, we're going to keep trying our luck at the scrap yards locally and we'll keep you posted.