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Old December 8, 2013, 11:10 AM   #1
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Winter Length of Pull

The Firearm deer season here was pretty late (opend 16 November) and the last 1/2 was bitter cold, so I layered on the clothes ...... and noticed my LOP/cheek weld position on the stock was "off" ...... not entirely unusable, but the normal, "throw it to my shoulder and the crosshairs were on target" was just not there ...... I'm thinking I should take an inch or so off and put a removable slip on pad on for warmer weather, and remove it for those 10 degree days when I'm bundled up like the Michelin Man .......

Thoughts? Alternatives?
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Old December 8, 2013, 11:30 AM   #2
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When I make a rifle for use in cold weather I usually cut the LOP about 1/2" to 3/4" shorter than the measured LOP of the shooter when dressed in a light shirt. I did make one for a man once who hunts WAY up north in Canada and I cut that one a full 1.25" short and he loves it.
Building heavy caliber rifles for Africa, where the hunting is not done while wearing parks, I cut to measured LOP minus 1/4"
A slightly short LOP makes for a faster handling rifle or shotgun.

One trick that works very well is to have the stock cut to give a correct LOP after installing a thick pad, the LOP, and then fit a very thin pad or a standard butt plate on it.
You use the gun in the cold with the plate. You don’t need the pad as much when you are wearing thick clothing.
Change it out for a thick recoil pad for warmer weather.
Fast and easy and it covers the bases better.
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Old December 8, 2013, 11:46 AM   #3
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When I sight in my gun I usually put my thick hunting jacket on to mimic the actual shooting situation I will be in
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Old December 8, 2013, 03:10 PM   #4
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I live Co and we got pretty cold way below what's normal for this time of year if your season end this past week or so.

I remember when I was BR shooting from the bench and free recoil rifle slide back in shoulder as you move it back and you move it forward with your shoulder. If you didn't have a stop on front rest you could move it forward just with your shoulder and not your body.

Hunting here in Co one day sun 50/60 next could be below zero. When I mount scope I'll do it layer then without and I may split that different and see how that feels. I manage pretty well doing it that way and most times I'm not layer for full day and I'm normally walking in 2/3 hr before first light. I think when I got my elk was around 5 didn't have much wind.

I spend little time around Lincoln and Grand Island was roping back then.

Well good luck
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Old December 9, 2013, 05:00 PM   #5
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In southern Michigan we can only use shotgun or muzzleloader ( and pistols if you want) during the firearm season. I've always used a muzzleloader since I've found them more accurate than a shotgun.

I thought I'd treat myself to a new TC Triumph awhile back as it was my leading candidate. But one time I shouldered the "Bone Collector" version with it's 3/4" shorter length of pull - deal maker! It still shoulders perfectly with winter clothing.
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Old December 9, 2013, 07:08 PM   #6
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Are you actually passing up the opportunity to acquire another gun?
This sounds like the perfect, legitimate reason to outfit one just for cold weather.
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Old December 9, 2013, 08:48 PM   #7
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Jimbob, the first thing I thought of when reading your post was "AR". An adjustable stock would allow you to draw it in when shooting with layers or you can extend it for warmer weather.

A nice 6.8 or 6.5 Grendel would make a good NE deer rifle!
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Old December 9, 2013, 09:02 PM   #8
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Ditto on the AR with the adjustable stock.

If you've ever held a Swiss rifle like a K-31 you will see what a stock made for winter weather is like.
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Old December 10, 2013, 09:39 AM   #9
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Beauty of cheek pads, butt pads, and/or shoulder pads is they make your range sessions longer and more enjoyable . Pretty soon you're setting back the scope on all your high octane rifles so you can use pads at the range all summer.
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Old December 11, 2013, 08:31 PM   #10
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I have two guns, A regular Ruger American .243, and a compact Ruger American .243, Lets me adjust to clothing thickness.....
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Old December 13, 2013, 05:46 PM   #11
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A slightly short LOP makes for a faster handling rifle or shotgun
Spot on here.

Ive always hated the newer rifle and shotgun stock LOP's. Seems everything now is set up for shooting scopes off a bench or rest, and adding a recoil pad is just insult to injury.

Most of the older (pre late 60's, early 70's) rifles, especially those stocked for open sights, had what I consider a proper LOP, around 12-13". Most of your military rifles have the same, including the AK's, which are often mistakenly called "short".

If you shoot from field positions, or snap shoot at all, or plan too, youre much better served with the shorter LOP's, and thats for year round shooting too, not just winter. Once you get used to the shorter LOP, everything else is instantly noticeable (and pretty much sucks) when you shoulder the gun.

These days, I the first thing I usually do with anything that doesnt come with what I consider a proper LOP, is ditch the recoil pad (seems everything comes with one now, even the guns that have little if any recoil), and replace it with a butt plate. A nice checkered steel butt plate would be the best, but its hard enough finding a rubber or plastic one these days. You'd think the gun makers would at least offer one as an after market option, but most dont. Brownells, or the old junk box down at your gunsmith, or maybe the gun shows, are usually your only chance at finding one. And then you still usually have to fit them.
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Old December 16, 2013, 05:26 PM   #12
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In my cases, both were shotguns and not rifles. I replaced the stock on my synthetic 870 deer gun with a shorter LOP over molded Hogue product. Really easy to get behind it now when sitting down and all bundled up. In another case I just cut off a bit of stock then reasonably fitted a rubber LimbSaver product on it.
It can also pay to check out the "youth models" in rifles since these have a shorter LOP. Anticipate sitting in the cold and heavily dressed, these shorter youth models may be the right choice for winter hunting.
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