Tikka T3X Lite Wideland Veil Cerakote Problem


Well-Known Member
A question please for those who also have a T3X Lite in Woodland Veil and for those with Cerakoting experience. In May of this year I bought a brand new T3X Lite in Woodland Veil; 20" .308. The short story of why I ended up with this rifle is that I wanted a lightweight .308 rifle with a 20" barrel, threaded 5/8x24 (so that I could use the same F&D lightweight mod) with detachable magazine and did not want to spend a fortune. Having looked at some very expensive carbon rifles, the T3x weighed proprtionally not a lot more, had the same D18 barrel as my Sako S20 in .308 and I thought there would be minimal difference in the chambering between the Sako and the Tikka. There wasn't so fire-formed neck-sized loads from the S20 chamber in the T3X and vice-versa - reloading WIN!

However, back to the question: after 5 months use with less that 200 rounds through the T3X the cerakoting in the bolt area is non-existent. The loss of cerakoting does not start when the bolt first contacts the action nor where the bolt stop holds it. As you can see from the photos, its a very distinct change! Along the length of the chambering its thinning and you can see the bolt "chatter" on cycling it. It was not like this when I got it and although it does not make any practical difference as the mechanism is stainless, I know its there and frankly it shouldn't be!

Seperately, someone looking to buy one of these contacted me on here to ask the state of mine as the one he had seen new in a gunshop was similiarly experiencing loss of the cerakoting. Significantly, there are no issues with the cerakoting anywhere else on the mechanism/barrel and high wear areas like where the mod is fitted are showing no signs of wear. Moreover, this does not feature on my S20 which is also cerakoted.

Question: have I got a Tikka quality issue here?

Last edited:
It must be very disappointing to have wear like this in a practically new rifle. Especially with a factory applied finish!

No doubt GMK (the importers) will say something along the lines of it being down to “cosmetic wear and tear“ to try to avoid any responsibility, however, if it is causing “chatter” on cycling the bolt, as you say, then that is not acceptable and the rifle does come with a two year warranty.

I would contact GMK with a complaint. It might be worth contacting some companies that are experienced in cerakoting bolt action rifles beforehand in order to get a view as to if this is normal (which is doubtful), that way, it will be far more difficult for GMK to just try to fob you off.

It seems like the cerakote finish hasn’t bonded properly to me.
Last edited:
Take it back and as Paul says it would be good to get a cerakote providers opinion to include with the complaint.

It looks like poor finish and if you were to try and sell it I would bet it would put many off…as you say the S20 doesn’t have this issue so why should the tikka?

The bolt shouldn’t ‘chatter,’ raise it with GMK.
All bolts that I have used have a slight rattle when not locked forward and being cycled IMHO. I see that as acceptable but its telling that the cerakote aling the bolt raceway all appears to be so fragile.

Awaiting the dealers comments.
Well, that's the rifle stripped back to original (as far as I can - the titanium recoil stop refuses to budge and with Arran on Saturday, I have not time to drill and tap it) and returned back to Braces of Bristol for return to GMK. We'll see what they say (and how long it takes them).

@C h r i s
Good luck, it does seem that the bare stainless is somewhat smooth, not been blasted like the rest of the action, so looks like the cerakote has no 'porous' texture to adhere to.