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Old October 3, 2012, 09:03 PM   #1
SerenityNetworks
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.204 Suggestions

Okay, this is a 'wish list' kind of thing, so I'm not looking to do anything anytime this season. But I do want to start thinking about it. I am (slowly) working on distances 300 to 500 yards. (I think it's going to be awhile before I go for much further.) For hunting I'm 'good enough'. That is, I don't shoot unless I know it is safe and I can kill it. I've never had an animal, fox size or larger, fall further than 30' from where it was hit. Most just drop. My max comfort level is 300 yards give-or-take a little. So I want to get that out of the way. It's not what I'm asking about.

I've found an older buddy/mentor that's into varmint shooting, bench rest, and reloading. I like the 6mm BR and 25.06, but for 500 yards and closer, but I've become really really intrigued by the .204. For what I might loose in tack driving ability, I (think) I gain more back from being able to keep the target in the scope and watch the bullet hit it's mark (or where it hits if it misses). So I'm thinking, if I were to go for a .204, how should I go about it?

What would be the top factory rifles? What would be the pick if I were later to get a custom barrel placed on it, better trigger, etc. Where should I start and how would I progress? What do I need to be considering?

Obviously this is such a noob question, but I would certainly appreciate some starting points.

As always, thank you in advance,
Andrew
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Old October 4, 2012, 02:13 PM   #2
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Have you ever taken a close look at the CZ 527 line? I can't possibly see why one would want to upgrade that fantastic single-set trigger. They are known for incredible accuracy, so you probably would not want to upgrade the barrel anytime either. The ring mounting system (not too different from the Ruger type) is rock solid- so no need to change there either.

That one rifle will likely have all the qualities you already want in a rifle, unless you want to upgrade to a heavier benchrest flat bottom type stock.

Edit: I'm guessing you reload, or will reload sometime in the future? Just thinking that unless you do- your ideas of swapping barrels, triggers, and such wont gain you much improvement at all- especially not enough to justify the investment.
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Old October 4, 2012, 02:27 PM   #3
SerenityNetworks
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Quote:
Have you ever taken a close look at the CZ 527 line?
No. I've seen it, but had no idea if it was excellent or garbage. There are a lot of .204's out there and I had no idea where to start. Obviously every manufacturer says their offering is wonderful and I haven't (yet) found any current reviews that seemed objective. I found some old reviews, but things can change a lot in a few years.

Thanks for getting me going,
Andrew
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Old October 4, 2012, 02:43 PM   #4
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Oh no- the CZ rifles are very far from garbage. They are worth every penny, and if there are any shortcuts made in there manufacturing processes- they hide them really well.

I'm not 100% sure where Allen is- closer to Texarkana/New Boston or Dallas metro area? Anyway, a well informed purchase should involve a lot of looking and research- I really hope you get a chance to handle a CZ firsthand amongst the others before you buy. You'll see what I mean. And if you ever venture into the Panhandle- I could let you send a few rounds down range with one of mine. I have both the 527 Varmint and the American models in .223.
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Old October 4, 2012, 02:56 PM   #5
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Thank you! Allen is the third suburb North of Dallas on Hwy 75. I'll actually be traveling through the Panhandle this weekend. But it will be on a whirlwind trip driving to Nebraska with my wife to pick up our granddaughter (3), so she can spend a week with us. During the trip, we'll also be heading to Iowa to go to our granddaughter-in-law's baby shower. And of course we'll have to make a couple other quick stop to see some of the other kids, even if it is just for a moment. It's a lot to squeeze in for a weekend and I have to be at work Monday morning. Obviously I won't have a chance to swing by your place. But I do appreciate the offer and will very much keep it in mind for when I have a bit more time.

And the invitation goes both ways. If you get down this way then drop me a PM.

Thanks again,
Andrew
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Old October 4, 2012, 03:53 PM   #6
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Ruger's model 77 in .204 is a good match.
Not sure who made the single shot falling block in .204 I shot once, but it was real fun.
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Old October 4, 2012, 04:04 PM   #7
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The only 204 I've shot was the CZ, and I was extremely impressed. I did some target shooting with it and killed a feral hog with it as well. It was one of the few times I picked up other person's gun as shot it as well as mine own right off the bat, I didn't have to 'get a feel for it' with some practice shots.
Great trigger, stupidly accurate, well made, and nice to look at. Between the 204 and 22 CZ's I've shot, I've turned into quite a fan of theirs.
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Old October 4, 2012, 04:19 PM   #8
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I also like the CZ line,I have a 452 Varment in 22LR. and it's the best 22 I ever had. I also like the 204 round but a new round has come out by Savage, Mod.12 6.5 Creedmore. Check it out. Chris
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Old October 4, 2012, 07:12 PM   #9
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6.5 creedmoor was not designed by savage (or maybe you are saying they now chamber a rifle for it?). Sorry, I was unclear on that part. 6.5 creedmoor is significantly larger than what he was asking about.
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Old October 4, 2012, 08:30 PM   #10
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Yeah, right now I'm looking for something small, but with a bit of oomph. The .204 will let me keep the target in sight, but still has some power. Once I bump it up to even a .223 or go with something like a 6BR, I loose that ability. That ability to keep the target in sight and watch the bullet strike is what really engages me. I've never seen that before in a centerfire. Then of course, I'm a complete noob.

I've been reading some on the CZ. The CZ 527 VT looks quite interesting. Is this rifle the best in class &/or best bang for the buck? Are there other models I might want to consider, such as the Ruger 77 Mark II Target? How would the Ruger compare with the CZ? The Ruger is about 2 lbs heavier, which could be a good thing. I'm not likely to be toting the rifle around all day without breaks, which would make the extra weight a burden. I don't know enough about triggers to say if the difference in type is a plus or minus.

Thanks again,
Andrew
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Old October 4, 2012, 10:28 PM   #11
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Ruger's mkii v/t is a heavy rifle if you plan to tote it around. The 26 inch barrel can be a bit unhandy at times but then again, its name is the varmint/target. Both of which would imply sitting stationary and enjoying some trigger time. The trigger on the v/t is adjustable and the two stage is nice but takes some getting used to if you are comfortable with single stage triggers. I have been very happy with the accuracy of my v/t rugers. However to tame the almost non-existant recoil of the 204 those extra couple of pounds may be redundant. If you handle one and feel it fits you well then I have no doubt you'd be pleased with one. However if weight is a concern at all I would encourage you to do your homework on other options.
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Old October 5, 2012, 08:49 AM   #12
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Is the accuracy essentially the same between the CZ, Ruger, and say the Tikka?

Also, do I really care if the stock is composite, Kevlar, or wood. I like wood and it's commonly less expensive (although I'm not sure why). I hear it said that composites are not impacted by weather. So? With a free floating barrel, the scope on the receiver, and the receiver bedded, what do I care if the wood swells and contracts a bit; if indeed it does to any meaningful measure or any more than composites change with temperature. I'm just not convinced. Maybe this is a topic for another thread. But to keep it in line with the intent of this post - given the same receiver/barrel, is a wood stock for the rifles we're discussing any less accurate than a composite?

Thanks again,
Andrew

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Old October 5, 2012, 09:02 AM   #13
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Quote:
Yeah, right now I'm looking for something small, but with a bit of oomph. The .204 will let me keep the target in sight, but still has some power. Once I bump it up to even a .223 or go with something like a 6BR, I loose that ability. That ability to keep the target in sight and watch the bullet strike is what really engages me. I've never seen that before in a centerfire. Then of course, I'm a complete noob.
You don't loose that ability with a .223 especailly if you are shooting light grained bullets. Plus you get that ability with larger caliber rifles if you add a muzzle brake. I personally don't care for muzzle brakes but if seeing the bullet impact the target was that important I'd add one to my rifle.

If you really want a rifle you can upgrade barrels and triggers on later I'd have to say a Remington M700 would be tops on the list. More aftermartet parts are made for it than any other action. More gunsmiths specialize in them as well. I liked the Varmint SF model but Remington has dropped that line but still has the VLS which would be my second choice.

CZ makes a very nice rifle and I love the single set triggers on some of their rifles. But I've only handled the CZ's and the biggest turn off to me on the varmint rifles is the magazine. When I'm walking with a varmitn rifle that is where I usually carry my rifle and I just don't think I'd enjoy the feel of that mag in my hand.

I'v only handled Rugers as well, and shot a couple of my buddies. I've never shot the varmint/target model. I can say that they build a rifle plenty accurate enough for hunting. I've only shot the laminated compact in 7-08 and the African in .416 Rigby and I know any .204 is more pleasant to shoot than that 416!
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