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Old January 24, 2013, 06:02 AM   #1
steveNChunter
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What Can I do to make a model 7 more accurate?

Ive got a Remington Model 7 chambered .243 that I bought a year or so ago for my wife to deer hunt with. It shoots OK I guess for what it is, averages around 2MOA. I was wondereing what other Model 7 owners have done to improve the accuracy of their rifles? Is floating the pencil-thin barrel a good or bad idea? Has anyone put theirs in a different stock and improved on accuracy? Has glass/pillar bedding helped? I know these rifles arent exactly the best recipe for being a tack driver, but its the rifle my wife picked out after walking around a gun show for hours looking at hundreds of rifles. She's only 5'1" so it fits her well. So what are some of yalls experiences attempting to accurize the model 7?
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Old January 24, 2013, 07:24 AM   #2
Leslie Sapp
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Do you handload? I took my wife's .260 Mod 7 from 1.5 to 2" groups with factory ammo to an honest 5/8", 5 shot group with handloads without much effort.

We had owned the rifle for 15 years or so and I was never impressed with it's accuracy. I neck sized a few cases, loaded up some 120 gr Sierra pro hunters over Varget, and was amazed at what the rifle was capable of.
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Old January 24, 2013, 08:24 AM   #3
taylorce1
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Model 7's are a fairly light rifle with lightweight barrel profiles. That makes them a little harder to shoot tiny groups with. You really need to concentrate on your bench technique while shooting them and wait several minutes between shoots so the barrel doesn't heat up and walk on you.

What ammunition are you shooting? Hand loads or factory, if factory premium or cheap white box? What bullet are you shooting and in what grain?

I would glass bed it, but I'd bed it in stages. I'd bed just the action and recoil lug first and free float the barrel. Shoot it and if accuracy improves to what you find acceptable then I'd leave it. If it doesn't then I'd start adding pressure to the forend, and once you find the right pressure bed it in. Pillars are never a bad idea in my opinion, especially in the cheap synthetics and plain wood stocks that are prone to compressing.

I'd look at the trigger as well and see if it needs to be cleaned up. Sometimes a good replacement or trigger job is all you need to shrink group size. There are several good replacement triggers out there for Remington rifles to fit most budgets.
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Old January 24, 2013, 08:38 AM   #4
Doyle
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My Model 7 .260 shoots less 1 MOA with factory ammo. I haven't done anything special to it. One thing you have to try is various weights of bullets. Also, with that thin barrel you need to wait a good 5 minutes between shots. Mine also likes it better when the bore isn't clean. Try wasting a few fouling shots to dirty it up a bit before trying for a group.
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Old January 24, 2013, 09:30 AM   #5
PawPaw
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Quote:
Ive got a Remington Model 7 chambered .243 that I bought a year or so ago for my wife to deer hunt with. It shoots OK I guess for what it is, averages around 2MOA.
I'd check the easy stuff first, make sure that the scope, base and rings are tight and that the action screws are properly torqued. Then I'd ask myself is 2MOA is really a problem? What does she intend to do with the rifle?

The only experience I have with the Model 7 is based on one I bought in the early '90s. Mine was in 7mm-08 and was purely a hunting rifle. After sight-in, I doubt that I shot 20 rounds a year through it. But, everything I shot with it bang-flopped. It was a rifle that was carried a lot, shot little, and it suited me just fine. I really never saw a reason to tinker with the rifle. I shot some tantalizingly small groups with it early on, then afterwards I'd normally fire one shot at the beginning of the hunting season to verify zero.
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Old January 24, 2013, 10:14 AM   #6
603Country
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You might consider an aftermarket trigger. That has helped with accuracy on a couple of my rifles. And like Taylorce1 mentioned, the light rifle with light barrel is a bit tougher to shoot well, so a better trigger might help the shooting just a bit.
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Old January 24, 2013, 01:10 PM   #7
eldermike
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I owned a model 7 in 7mm-08 when they first came out. I did manage to get mine to shoot very well (under 1") with handloads.

I did bed the action and free float the barrel. Here's the bad news: that made no real difference unless you consider that it even became wilder in sending out flyers on 5 shot strings. But then again it was slightly better on 3 shot groups when allowed to cool. The forend pressure point actually has a purpose on a very light barrel.

The biggest bang for the buck came from having the trigger worked on. No creep and lighter pull helped the most.

Before I sold it I bedded a pressure point back into the stock forend. I did this by shimming the action and bedding the barrel in about the same place as the factory pressure point was.
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Old January 24, 2013, 03:25 PM   #8
Mr. Whimsy
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Wait 5 minutes between shots?

People actually do this?
I wouldn't have the patience for a gun that needed this. Also, one would think that if you are shooting at game, you would not have this luxury. Personally I'd be more interested in how it groups w/ 3 uninterrupted shots so that I'd know what to expect in the field.
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Old January 24, 2013, 03:49 PM   #9
603Country
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How many times do you really expect to have 3 shots of rapid fire while hunting deer? Recently I did that with the 220 Swift on running pigs and I was 67% effective, and I think I did it also one time last year (also 67% effective, with the 260). Doesn't happen much. Back when I was a kid and had that lever action Marlin in 35 Rem, I could and did really throw some lead. Shot a lot of deer, to the point that my brother said that if I didn't hold the deer shooting to one at a time, he wasn't going to help me drag deer again (pre-ATV hunting). That was back when a really hot barrel meant I was having about as much fun as a guy can have.
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Old January 24, 2013, 04:27 PM   #10
giaquir
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I would address your issues in 2 steps.
1. install a Timney trigger and practice.
2. If the Timney trigger and practice didn't
yield desirable results,I'd take the rifle to a competent
gunsmith, explain my issues and have him install a heavier
profile barrel. (2moa at 100 yds is well within minute of deer
out to 250 yds)
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Old January 24, 2013, 05:41 PM   #11
steveNChunter
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Ok Ill try to answer some of the questions/possible issues that have been brought up.

I dont handload, I wish I did and I will someday when we have a larger place of our own that will have a dedicated "man room" but as of right now we rent a singlewide (no extra space at all). I have been shooting Winchester super-x 100gr. power points in it. Im going to switch to 95gr. Federal Fusions and see how those do.

I havent done so yet but Im going to adjust the trigger down to about 2.5 lbs.

My thinking on floating the barrel is that it may be more accurate on the first shot or two when floated, but not as good on 5 shot groups. Am I correct in thinking that? I would rather have that first, cold bore shot be more accurate as that should be all she needs to kill a deer. If it takes more than that then its not the guns fault. If the gun will shoot even 2-shot groups better by floating the barrel then its worth doing on a hunting rifle IMO.

No, 2 MOA is not a problem if that ends up being the best the gun will shoot, shes not the best shot ever and she doesnt shoot long ranges but if I can make some cheap or free tweaks to make it shoot better then why not?

I may bed the action if it still doesnt shoot any better after floating the barrel and adjusting the trigger
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Old January 24, 2013, 08:53 PM   #12
misterE
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Sounds like you need to experiment with ammo. The federal fusions may be just the ticket. I've found them to be the most accurate hunting load for a rem 700 in 308.
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Old January 24, 2013, 10:47 PM   #13
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I have a model 7 7mm-08. It was a bear to get to shoot, but when I figured out what bullet it likes it is a 1/2" at 100 cold barrel rifle. I did not say half minute because I am not 1/2 minute past about 100yd with a low powered scope.
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Old January 25, 2013, 05:36 AM   #14
steveNChunter
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Quote:
it is a 1/2" at 100 cold barrel rifle
Thats all Im hoping for out of my model 7. to expect a barrel that small to shoot that well after more than a couple shots in a short amount of time is asking too much IMO.
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Old January 25, 2013, 05:46 AM   #15
taylorce1
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I wouldn't do a thing to the rifle until you try some different ammunition in it. Using only one bullet weight and one factory load and saying you're not satisfied with the rifles accuracy and want to fix it is kind of putting the cart before the horse. Find a couple of types of ammunition that your rifle likes to eat and then decide if you need to fine tune the rifle.
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Old January 25, 2013, 08:26 AM   #16
steveNChunter
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I didnt mention it in that earlier post but Ive tried federal power-shock 100gr. as well with similar results as the winchesters. Im kinda limited on bullet weight choices for deer hunting with a .243 IMO. I wouldnt want to go much lighter than 95 and 100 is the heaviest factory load thats easy to find.
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Old January 25, 2013, 08:28 AM   #17
Doyle
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Quote:
Personally I'd be more interested in how it groups w/ 3 uninterrupted shots so that I'd know what to expect in the field.
I've been hunting for nearly 40 years and never once have I had to shoot more than twice at deer or hogs - and even then two shots have been needed only a few times. After the first shot the animal is either hit or completetly gone.
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Old January 25, 2013, 08:29 AM   #18
steveNChunter
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Amen Doyle
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Old January 25, 2013, 08:48 AM   #19
603Country
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After Doyle said that he'd never shot more than once at a pig, I feel the need to mention that the two times that I fired 3 shots at running pigs was both times at 3 separate pigs. Killed two each time, and flat missed one. I missed the second shot both times. First 3 shot bunch was about 80 yards. Second bunch was right at 250.

Had to defend my honor.
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Old January 25, 2013, 08:59 AM   #20
eldermike
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I would try different ammo if I was limited to factory ammo (which by the way is more than just ok for hunting). I would do nothing to the gun until I was handloading and then I would begin to eliminate other limitations found in the gun, if they still exist.

And with that said I don't hunt with neck sized maximun length custom hand loads because I don't like the way they cycle in the gun. I also find that neck tension and max overall length that yeilds great accuracy was not considered by the gun manufacturer in it's design. Factory loads that yield ok accuracy are a great choice for hunting.
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Old January 25, 2013, 10:07 AM   #21
Doyle
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603Country, that just shows that FL pigs run faster than TX pigs.
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Old January 25, 2013, 11:00 AM   #22
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I helped a neighbor buy a used Rem Model 7 in 7mm-08. On checking it out, I found the stock was cracked longitudinally at the front screw, so I decided to pillar/epoxy bed it, with crack repaired. For the crack fix, I used a piece of 3/16" bolt, set into a slot I made near the front screw, covered with JB Weld.

Pillars were made from 1/2" steel tubing from Home Depot, the stock routed out with a dremel to about 1/16" depth and roughened to give the JB Weld epoxy better grip. The barrel was generously free-floated and I shortened the stock and refitted the original pad.

Results were no less than outstanding!! The rifle loved 140 grain Rem. Core-Loct factory ammo, producing 100 yard, perfect three-shot cloverleaf with all three touching. It was then the neighbor's turn. She shot it well and still loves it after three years!!!
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Old January 25, 2013, 11:56 AM   #23
reynolds357
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I agree Doyle. I learned how to deer hunt with a bolt action, and my father would only give me one round. I plan on teaching my son with a single shot 7-30 Waters.
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Old January 25, 2013, 02:13 PM   #24
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603Country, that just shows that FL pigs run faster than TX pigs.
+1

Over Christmas I had a night where I let 6 shots go at 5 separate pigs... I only missed one and 5 pigs were on the ground within about 15 seconds.....

But I was cheating and using an AR


With my Model 70 .243 the best I have done is to take 2 shots at separate pigs in the same hunt.... Only found one
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Old January 25, 2013, 06:30 PM   #25
wpsdlrg
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No ! Floating the pencil barrel generally will NOT improve things. Been there, done that. The M7, as much as I like it, is a compromise. The pencil barrel is there to reduce weight, but the down side is that it heats up really fast....and WILL produce some stringing. Floating the barrel will actually make it WORSE. The up side is that the barrel cools fast. So, if practicing with the 7 at the range, shoot short strings, no more than 5 rounds at a run....then allow the barrel to cool. The 7 is really only intended to be a hunting rifle - and it does very well at that - but it's not a target gun.

As to improving on 2 moa accuracy, it can be done. Hand loads ARE the answer.

You could TRY the old trick of varying the amount of upward pressure on the barrel, but adding shims to the pressure pads in the forend....but I never was able to get an improvement that way. I tried bedding the action, floating the barrel, adding uplift at the forend, etc. In the end, I found the best results with some pressure on the barrel, probably about the same as from the factory. I then tuned my loads for the rifle - that gave me the most improvement. In the end, my M7 (.308) would do about 1 moa or so, but only for about 4 rounds. The 5th in a string would always step out a bit, unless I let the barrel cool after 4 rounds.

Another obvious solution would be to rebarrel the 7 with a standard weight barrel, as from a Rem. 700. That would do nicely. But, short of that....handloading is your best bet.

As I said, the M7 is compromised toward a hunting rig - not a target rifle.
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