Shorten the distance to long-range accuracy and save money in the process
by Lou Patrick and Rob Reaser
With more and more shooters and hunters focusing on improving their long-range shooting potential, thoughts naturally turn to expensive modifications. The good news is, a long-range-capable rifle doesn’t have to bust your wallet. Here, we show you how a minor investment in a performance stock and trigger system along with a bit of do-it-yourself grit can turn that factory gun into a long-range hole puncher in no time flat.
For this project, we’ll start with our off-the-shelf Remington 700 and remove the factory stock. As most of you probably know, factory polymer stocks are not up to snuff when serious shooting is on the menu. Sure, they can get the job done for most hunting and general shooting duties, but when precision work is the plan…not so much. You need a rock-solid platform that will not allow the barreled action to move within the stock in order to maintain point-of-impact consistency.
Plastic factory stocks tend to be light and relatively flimsy because they are cored and not solid. That’s largely a result of the polymer type used and the molding process. A cost-effective answer to the factory polymer stock is offered by McMillan Stocks under their Mc3 brand. The Mc3 stocks, both the tactical and hunting versions, are solid polymer (specially formulated and manufactured), giving them the rigidity you want in a precision shooting platform. Furthermore, they come from the factory with aluminum pillars already installed. This ensures a solid engagement between the stock and the barreled action. For this project, we selected the Legend Deluxe DBM.
Best of all, Mc3 stocks are drop-in replacements for the Remington 700. We’ve installed a few over the last couple years and have found the inletting to be spot-on, requiring no additional modification. Just remove the two action screws, remove the old stock and replace with the new, and torque the screws to 45 in-lbs.
The next best upgrade you can make for the Remington 700 in terms of boosting the shooter’s accuracy potential is to replace the factory trigger with a performance trigger with a light pull weight and more precise tuning. To that end, Timney Triggers offers several different models to choose from. For our install, we selected the company’s Remington 700 HIT model with the flat trigger profile. This trigger is adjustable for pull weight and overtravel, and delivers the kind of precise, clean break we want in a long-range rifle.
If you’ve never swapped a stock or a trigger in a Remington 700, fear not. The process is really simple and requires minimal tools. All you need is a screwdriver to remove the two actions screws securing the stock to the barreled action, a hammer and punch set for moving the two trigger pins, and an in.-lb. torque wrench to reinstall the action screws. That’s it. For everything you need at your fingertips, Real Avid has the tools. We used their Smart Drive 90 driver set, Accu-Punch Hammer & Punches, and the Smart Torq torque wrench.
So, if you’re game for an easy upgrade that you can do yourself and save hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars by skipping the custom fiberglass stock and professional gunsmithing routine, check out the video above as we walk you through the process.