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Old September 1, 2013, 01:35 PM   #1
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Bolt action rifles with polymer stocks

It may be an odd question, but I have never owned a bolt action with a polymer stock: Is the stock on these rifles normally massive or hollow? Reason for asking is, easy to guess, that it the latter was the case it would be tempting to outfit the butt for storing stuff inside...
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Old September 1, 2013, 01:44 PM   #2
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I have an ATI stock on a Brit 303 and it is hollow.
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Old September 1, 2013, 03:43 PM   #3
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I'm sure you can get them about any way you wish. Adjustable stocks maybe not so much as a lot of space is taken up with adjustment stuff, but I'd guess most fixed ones are hollow to save on both weight and production material/cost.

I had a Rem 700 PSS with synthetic stock, but I honestly never investigated the stock composition.
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Old September 1, 2013, 04:50 PM   #4
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often they are the same outer dimensions as wood stocks and they are normally skeletonized inside so though they are mostly hollow there is a framework inside you would have to work around.
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Old September 1, 2013, 06:02 PM   #5
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Most are hollow

The only ones I have encountered were the skeletonized Ruger 10/22 and 77's. Most are hollow stock. They run lighter and perhaps the best one I have ever seen, was a Tika. There is a time and place for synthetics and generally overdone. ....

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Old September 1, 2013, 07:54 PM   #6
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There are several types of synthetic stocks. The original, and best are made of layers of fiberglass, or kevlar cloth laminated with epoxy in the action area. They are then milled out for the action and barrel channel just like a wood stock. The buttstock and forend are made with hand laid layers of cloth much like fiberglass boats. The hollow areas are filled with expanding foam to deaden the sound. Expect to pay $500-$700, but they are the strongest and lightest. Kevlar stocks are the most expensive but weigh 16-20 oz compared to 32-36 for a typical wood or fiberglass stock

Companies like Bell and Carlson and HS precision use chopped fiberglass much like home insulation mixed with molten plastic and poured into a mold. The originals were heavy, and weak. The better versions now use an aluminum block for the action to bolt to with the fiberglass and plastic poured into a mold around it. They are not hollow. They do provide a stable accurate stock for around $250-$350. They are very heavy, and because of the construction can be quite chunky and thick. Hogue uses a similar plastic stock with a metal insert. Both types are extemely heavy, 36-48 oz.

Most factory stocks are injection molded. Molten plastic is poured into a mold. Air pressure is injected into the mold causeing the plastic to expand into the shape of the mold. Most are fairly inexpensive and can be purchsed for around $100 or often less. Weight is about the same as most wood stocks and often slightly more. You won't find a synthetic lighter than wood until you get into the $600 price range.

The injection molded stocks are hollow, but that is easily fixed by just taking off the buttpad and filling it with foam packing peanuts. Some use expanding spray foam, but the packing peanuts works just as well and is much easier and less messy. They actually shoot a lot better than they get credit for.
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Old September 1, 2013, 08:49 PM   #7
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Some are hollow.
Some are fiber filled.
Some are stuffed with foam fillers.
Some are foam filled/reinforced.
Some have internal metal support structures (and may or may not otherwise be hollow, stuffed, or foam reinforced).

It just depends on the stock.

For the most part, budget rifles have hollow plastic stocks. Sometimes, they may have some type of foam shoved in there (but removable), just to reduce reverberation during shooting. It isn't structural.

But, as you climb the quality ladder, you're more likely to find stocks that are foam-reinforced or otherwise filled.
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Old September 3, 2013, 02:52 PM   #8
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A buddy shortened the length of pull on his Weatherby Vanguard synthetic 308. He was suprised to find that it was a solid plastic stock, at least as far as the inch or so he cut off, and as far into it as his drill travelled.
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Old September 3, 2013, 02:56 PM   #9
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I recall one of the gun scribes writing that the most desireable quality for a polymer stock was rigidity.
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Old September 3, 2013, 04:16 PM   #10
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Some are drums !!!

It's fairly easy to tell if it's hollow as they drum too much. I tried to tone down, on of my Hunters and it did not do much good. I really don't care much for them but they take a beating !! ...

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