Varmint or not - need some advise please!?!

White Hart

Well-Known Member
Im looking for a new rifle and want an all rounder for stalking and lamping etc... Most of my shooting is off high seats, then bipod, then minimal from sticks, weight isnt too much of an issue so was thinking of going with a varmint barrel, so whats the real pro's n con's?!?

Help and advise would be greatly appreciated.
 

rooster

Well-Known Member
If your not shooting at the range a heavy barrel is not needed imo, i use my varmint barrel Howa for range duty and stalking, if it was purely a sporting gun i would buy a sporter barrel.
 

Cadex

Well-Known Member
I really wouldnt bother with the varmint profile for stalking mate..........If you let off one shot for every stalk you will be doing bloody well. Just extra weight for no benefits. If on the other hand however your blasting away all day long down the range well a varmint profile will serve you better. I have a Tikka T3 Hunter in 25-06 and I can fire 5 shots one after the other with no change of POI and its just a sporter. Unless you shooting like John Wayne I can see very few pros of buying a varmint.
 
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White Hart

Well-Known Member
Yeh Cadex100 I think your quite right cheers for that. I was just toying with the idea really.

I look after my guns as best I can but they tend to get the occasional knock from the tractor, landy, or quad.

I've never had more of an issue than knocking the zero out, but just wondered about beefing things up a bit?!?

Thanks for the advise much appreciated.....
 

Milligan

Well-Known Member
Yeh Cadex100 I think your quite right cheers for that. I was just toying with the idea really.

I look after my guns as best I can but they tend to get the occasional knock from the tractor, landy, or quad.

I've never had more of an issue than knocking the zero out, but just wondered about beefing things up a bit?!?

Thanks for the advise much appreciated.....
More likely to be as a result of your scope than something to do with the barrel profile so going varmint won't fix it.
 

sir-lamp-alot

Well-Known Member
i used to quite like my varmint barrells when i was doing a lot of foxing i used to find it a bit more stable but now im doing more stalking i have to admit i give them a wide birth
 

splash

Well-Known Member
Con's of Bull barrell :-

Weight
Weight
Weight

And

Weight

Pro's :-

Make's the owner think it outshoots a sporter profile



True you can shoot more on the range Until the barrel heats up to distort your scope picture, then takes ages to cool down.

I have both but would not go out of my way to buy another.
 

wabbituntr

Well-Known Member
I really wouldnt bother with the varmint profile for stalking mate..........If you let off one shot for every stalk you will be doing bloody well. Just extra weight for no benifits. If on the other hand however your blasting away all day long down the range well a varmint profile will serve you better. I have a Tikka T3 Hunter in 25-06 and I can fire 5 shots one after the other with no change of POI and its just a sporter. Unless you shooting like John Wayne I can see very few pros of buying a varmint.
+1 :thumb:
 

243varmint

Well-Known Member
I have a T3 varmint in .243 and after lugging it around Berkshire stalking with Willie-gunn, it's now my foxing rig and have a T3 lite in 30-06 for all my stalking.
The varmint is great for bench resting off the top of the Landy at night lamping but bloody heavy for stalking. IMO


Jonathon
 

Brithunter

Well-Known Member
Have you actually compared the weights of the bull barrel to a sporting one?

Do you really want to be trudging around carrying a rifle that weighs 10lbs+ without scope fitted?

What benefit do you really think it's going to bring you if you do get a bull barrelled gun?

Bull barrels are usually found on target rifles where they lay down and shoot from one position and they often have little carts to lug their stuff to the firing point. The Varmint rifles in the US have heavy barrels or Bull barrels as they shoot rather rapidly butt hey usually take several rifles to allow one to cool while they shoot another and often shoot from the truck or very close to it weight is not a problem when you don't have to carry it far. Of course bench rest rifles have short heavy barrels but then again they are more akin to coastal artillery and belong to my mind on a concrete stanchion mount as I believe a "light gun" is about 14lbs in weight :rolleyes:.

Parker-Hale introduced the 1200V (Varmint) with heavy bull barrel, they claimed the barrel weighed 4lbs on it's own but did not say in which calibre and seeing as how it was offered in .308 and mine is a 6mm I guess the 6mm weighs more than the .30 cal due to the smaller bore.


The rifle sans scope and mount weighs just over 10lbs. I weighed mine ready for the range and it weighs just shy of 13lbs. Add a heavy tacticool type scope:-


and it's over 13lbs without a Bi-Pod

Now do you really want to lug that about stalking?

Now this is where bull barrels belong:-



The target range ;)

Edit:- Load testing with a .308 Brno ZKK 601 with normal sporting weight barrel and unaltered factory bedding



It did not like the Winchester factory 180 grn Silver Tip at all. The Speer 150 grn Round Nose bullet does not suit either but the rifle like the Hornady 150 grn Round nose better, not shown on this target, it likes the 165 Nosler ballistic Tip and with a bit of tweeking the 165 Speer SP shoots well. Notice all five round groups except the Silver Tips which was obviously not going to make it after just three shots.
 
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ejg

Well-Known Member
I have one rifle with a heavy barrel. Even when sitting is a very light stock it is too heavy for my stalking
or even foxing. Pity that rifle manufacturers seem to be stuck on either sporter or heavy and seldomly
offer medium weight barrels. My main hunting rifle in 308 has a heavy magnum sporter barrel on it and is just
at 10lbs with scope/mod which is as much as I would want to drag around.
Shot this crow at 425m with my T3 lite 20" barrel in 223. Even light barrels can shoot.
edi
 
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scoie

Well-Known Member
I swapped from a T3 varmint stainless to a Sako 85 hunter for the exact reason of weight. In hindsight i shoudlnt of bought the varmint barrel as it is used as walkabout foxing gun but it was a very good price. However after a few excursions i realised i dint fire enough rounds/need the better accuracy of the varmint barrel or the excess weight so chopped it in for a sporter barrel, never looked back to be honest , same accuracy and a joy to carry
 

White Hart

Well-Known Member
Yeh some great advise there guys thanks.

Thanks Brithunter for the detail - I spend quite a bit of time up your way as my uncle lives at Frampton.

The reason I was considering a varmint was robustness over anything else, but I've never broken anything this far, just the odd knocked scope... Im feeling a Sako 85 in some form.... not a varmint now though! Decision made...

Cheers again...
 

204 Ruger

Well-Known Member
Like the others haev said, dont need it for stalking or foxing but if you are going to use it at the range a lot then get the Varmint barrel.
 

Brithunter

Well-Known Member
Yeh some great advise there guys thanks.

Thanks Brithunter for the detail - I spend quite a bit of time up your way as my uncle lives at Frampton.

The reason I was considering a varmint was robustness over anything else, but I've never broken anything this far, just the odd knocked scope... Im feeling a Sako 85 in some form.... not a varmint now though! Decision made...

Cheers again...
Your welcome. The only reason I have got the 1200V is that I did not have one of them. Only really needed a 1200M to finish off the set I think.
 

PKL

Well-Known Member
Heat dispersion on a sporter can also be improved by proper free floating and ample inletting space, allowing heat to disperse from all angles, perhaps allowing it to cool quicker than a fully bedded sporter. Of course, free floating should only be done if it benefits the rifles accuracy as well, some like a bit of an upwards touch on the front part of the stock end of things...the zkk's being part of the group I believe - BH? BH
 

Brithunter

Well-Known Member
Heat dispersion on a sporter can also be improved by proper free floating
Arghhhhhhhhhhhh it's a conspirarcy I tell you...................... Free floating wash your mouth out with soap.

The Brno ZKK series did not have floated barrels from the factory :smug: and funnily enough I have never seen one that didn't shoot well. I have seen a few that did not shoot as well after the owner messed with the bedding and floated them :rolleyes:.
 

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