MatchGrade Bedding Compound Instructions
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MatchGrade Rifle Bedding Compound
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For a bolt action rifle to be accurate, the rifle needs sound bedding.
Note to U.S and other international customers - please ensure you buy at least two kits to save shipping costs!
Rifle bedding is fundamental to rifle accuracy. There is no way around this.
What is rifle bedding?
Click here for MatchGrade instructions and videos online.
Click here to download printable PDF instructions.
Please click here for important information regarding shipping and costs!!!
The term bedding refers to the fit and stability of a barreled action within the rifle stock. If the fit and stability of the metal work in relationship to the stock is poor, the rifle will be in-accurate.
In order for a rifle to shoot accurately, the number one rule is that everything needs to be the same with each shot. There are several variables to rifle accuracy, bedding is one of the critical factors.
Under recoil, the rifle action undergoes movement and stress. When a shot is fired, the pressure of the cartridge produces recoil within the stock, the action is forced backwards and then returns forwards. If the action does not return the same point after each shot (this term called "battery" with relevance to artillery) then the rifle will be in-accurate. If any areas of the stock are pinching or exerting excess pressure against the barreled action, accuracy will be poor. This is why optimum bedding is so important.
With every shot, the barreled rifle action moves and vibrates within the rifle stock. The best way to picture the barrel is by using the analogy of a baseball pitcher. As the pitcher throws his ball, the slightest difference in his point of release will change the point of impact at the batter. The rifle barrel is just the same and "whips" with each shot. If the barrel is unable to whip the same way each time, the bullet will strike to a different point of impact.
I have a new factory rifle, is it bedded?
Occasionally, rifle manufacturers will produce a rifle design which yields a good action to stock fit, but it won’t be carefully epoxy bedded. Unfortunately, bedding is too costly a procedure for most rifle manufacturers to perform. With some brands, a dollop of hot glue is sometimes applied as a rough and ready bedding. But with most production rifles, the rifle is assembled in such a way that the barrel is forced upwards at the tip of the forend. This point of force is called pressure point bedding.
Factory pressure point bedding will sometimes allow a rifle to shoot cold groups (up to 1 minute rest between shots) of an inch or less at 100 yards. But more often, with ordinary shooting procedures, groups tend to be between 1.5 and 3" at 100 yards. This level of accuracy is adequate for close to moderate range shooting using a cold barrel but hopeless for moderate to long range shooting when firing multiple shots. On wood stocked rifles, pressure point bedding will eventually become a problem as moisture shifts the stock around.
Some high end semi custom rifles and sniper rifles do feature epoxy bedding, but these are the exception. In other instances, a manufacturer will claim that the rifle is ‘pillar bedded’. This is misleading, the rifle is not actually bedded but is simply fitted with two aluminum or mild steel pillars to try and minimize stock compression. Bedding a rifle with epoxy resin (glass bedding) is the optimum method of obtaining an optimum fit, long term stock stability and optimum rifle accuracy.
To set up the best platform for accuracy potential, gunsmiths, custom rifle builders, target shooters and hobbyists "bed" the rifle action and free float the barrel. Bedding involves filling the gunstock with a strong as steel resin, the action is then set down into the resin which when dry, creates a mirror image of the action. The mirror image of the action is a precise bedding platform which allows the action to recoil and return to battery with each shot.
Not all bedding jobs are equal!
Be aware, not all bedding jobs are equal. If you have a rifle that was previously bedded, the work may not have been done correctly. A tight fitting bedding job will often cause double grouping. This occurs due to the fact that the action is still moving under recoil, but is becoming pinched and hung up at different points, effecting harmonics. To this end, your DIY bedding job using MatchGrade bedding compound and instructions has the potential to outperform many professional services, products and methods.
Not all bedding compounds are equal!
A rubbery or plastic like compound might look the part, but over time, poor quality bedding compounds and glue gun fixes eventually deteriorate- sometimes very quickly. Deterioration can occur under compression, under recoil or due to absorption of solvents and preservative oils. A steel reinforced epoxy resin designed specifically for bedding rifles, designed to withstand compression, recoil and solvents- is absolutely essential. Along with this, the availability of ongoing help and user support is equally essential.
Use MatchGrade bedding compound for optimum results
Designed by Nathan Foster, MatchGrade steel reinforced bedding compound is the optimum product for bedding rifles. Not a week goes by when we do not use this product ourselves. If you want to get the job done right and want expert after sales support throughout your jobs, no matter where you are in the world, use MatchGrade bedding compound.
I designed MatchGrade bedding compound and our Synthetic stock Stabilizer, beginning research in 2008. With help from an industrial chemist employed in the research of epoxy resins, I obtained raw materials and began experimenting. It took the better part of twelve months, bedding rifles over and over again, adjusting the mix and observing results.
I had several goals in mind such as user friendliness during the bedding process, eliminating shrinkage, extreme strength for high recoiling big bore magnums along with minimal air bubbles. I wanted a bedding compound that I could use to build extremely accurate rifles, not make a quick buck. The bedding compound certainly is tough, enough to blunten a tungsten cutting tool within minutes. The Stabilizer compound for plastic stocks had to reach my criteria as well, it had to be as stiff as ceramic yet tough. The Stabilizer also had to be light weight.
You can be assured that I have put my all into these products and that they are the very best for building extremely accurate and dependable rifles. Several years on, rifles that have been bedded with MatchGrade bedding compound are as sound as the day they were bedded with no signs of compound deterioration.
Whats in the kit?
A MatchGrade bedding kit includes our ultra tough, steel reinforced bedding compound, pre-measured for single use ( full bedding of 1 rifle), removing any error from the mixing process. Kits also include a block of plastercine. Based on customer demand, the viscosity of MatchGrade is slightly runny, to ensure migration into all voids.
Click here for MatchGrade intsructions and videos online
Part A 180g in over sized container (to be used as mixing bowl)
Part B 9.8g
Thanks to Skype, we can offer live (webcam) online support to hobbyists, no matter where you are in the world. A skype account is free (no toll bills either, its all free) and providing your computer has a web cam, speakers and a microphone (most modern computers will have these built in), you can get started with Skype in a matter of minutes. I am not currently charging for this service, preffering to utilize our donation system. Those of you who can afford a donation- thankyou, those who can't, I fully understand. So make the most of it, live tutorials!
My Skype username is terminal-ballistics-research
Download Skype here
Ph: 06 7523552
If you have any querries regarding this product or shipping, please use the enquiry form to contact us so we can help.
What does free floating the rifle barrel mean?
Free floating the barrel involves removing all wood or plastic along the barrel channel so that the barrel has no contact points with the barrel to interrupt its natural whip. The only point of contact should be the bedding under the barrel "parallel" closest to the chamber. This helps ensure that the action is not having to hold all of the weight of the barrel. Obviously, the heavier the barrel, the more the barrel needs supporting to take the stress of the action / action screws. On very light barrelled rifles, the barrel can be free floated right to the action. The trick, is to understand that bedding the start of the barrel acts as a vibrational dampener. This can help improve load flexibility, the rifle having multiple accuracy sweet spots as opposed to a single sweet spot that may in some cases be difficult to find.
I have a plastic stocked rifle, can I use MatchGrade bedding compound on this stock?
Yes you can! The first step is to stabilize the plastic stock forend by filling the hollow forend with our MatchGrade stock stabilizer, designed specifically to make plastic stocks immensely strong and rigid.
Never ever free float a plastic stock without stabilizing and bedding the rifle. An unbedded, free floated plastic stocked rifle is typically extremely inaccurate.
The first step is to stabilize the stock with our Stabilizer resin, this is a simple job, taking about an hour to complete. Once the compound has set, the rifle can be bedded for a rock solid platform.
Please click here to view MatchGrade stock Stabilizer.
How do I know if my rifle has been previously bedded?
To check if your rifle was previously epoxy/glass bedded; remove the barreled action from the stock. Epoxy resin bedding is instantly recognizable as a layer of resin that appears as a mirror imprint of the action.
Remember, if the rifle has been epoxy bedded prior to your ownership, be aware that not all bedding jobs are a success. There are many private and commercial operators throughout the world who do not understand the finer variables of bedding, worsening accuracy through their efforts. To inspect whether the existing epoxy bedding job is counterproductive to accuracy, the first indicator is if the stock has to be walked out of the action (wriggled). In this instance, it is immediately evident that the action is pinched. You have probably already found that the rifle is double grouping or stringing, there is your answer.
The recoil lug of a rifle is a critical aspect of accuracy. Most rifle designs utilize a fixed recoil lug to literally arrest recoil of the action within the stock. This was pioneered by the Mauser brothers. Most modern rifles follow the Mauser lug design in some way, the exception being the Tikka rifles and more recently, Sako and Savage, opting for a floating lug to minimise machining costs.
The front, sides and bottom of a traditional recoil lug should not touch the bedding, these areas should have been relieved with insulation/masking tape during the bedding process. To check if these areas of the metal work are touching the bedding, grease the action (axle grease), put the action into the stock, remove it and study the imprint.
On the plastic stocked Remington SPS rifle, the start of the barrel must be bedded, if it is not bedded (if the barrel is free floated to the action), the stock will flex at the recoil lug (weakest point of the stock) and will come up and pinch the recoil lug with varying degrees of tension from shot to shot. This completely ruins accuracy. If you have an SPS rifle that has been bedded in this way and displays poor accuracy, it will need re-bedding.
On the T3, A7 and Savage, if the rifle has been bedded, the floating ali recoil lug must touch the action at its front face, while the top and rear face of the floating ali lug must be relieved (not touching metal). The same method of fit versus relief must be applied to the Sako and Tikka M series rifles regarding the action boss and how this boss fits into the floating lug.
Occasionally T3 rifles do require bedding such as when fitted into aftermarket stocks or when wooden stocks eventually warp or crack while in plastics stocks, over compression of the action screws will eventually ruin accuracy, requiring epoxy resin bedding to rectify the crushed fit (over compression also a long term issue on wood stocked T3 rifles).
The tang of a previously bedded rifle must also be checked. On rifle deigns such as the Mauser (93-98), Howa and Sako, if the rearmost vertical face of the tang is not relieved, the butt stock may eventually split under recoil. Again, use grease imprinting to check the fit.
A final test of previous work done to your rifle, is to re-assemble the rifle, release the floor plate (to decompress the magazine spring), hold the rifle at the 1 O’clock position and undo the front action screw a couple of turns before retightening it. If the barrel appears to lift in and out of the stock, the action is under stress and bedding is no good. It also pays to check Sendero rifles for this (also Bell & Carlson stocked M700’s and Weatherby rifles). On unmodified factory rifles such as the SPS, this test is of no use due to the pressure point bedding.
Can I perform DIY bedding, what if I make a mistake?
With DIY bedding, rudimentary workshop skills are a plus. However basic hobby skills are fine. Attitude is everything. Be prepared to make mistakes. In the worst case, you may have to rework your job. Yet the skills you will gain will last you a lifetime. Bedding is not the sort of thing where one mistake is made and the rifle is ruined forever. As long as some basic rules are followed, if the job turns out to be a dud it can be reworked without fuss. DIY bedding is not the easiest of processes but with patience and attention to detail, a great result can be achieved. If you want to truly master rifle accuracy, learning to bed your rifle is a must.
Though our services, you will have the right product, the right instructions and the right support- to get the job done properly.
The TBR website has detailed instructions along with helpful videos. Also, I am always able to help via email, phone or skype. No where else will you find this level of support.
It doesn't matter if you live in a remote area of Africa, in the mountains of Eastern Europe, the Australian outback or the Rocky Mountains, we have delivered kits to all locations- and given support to users in all locations. Try getting this level of support with other products including tips for your individual brand and model of rifle.
International buyers please note!!!
Please consider buying two bedding kits at minimum. If you make a mistake and need to start over, it can be very handy to have extra compound on hand and shipping rates tend to favor double and triple kit orders. This is very important- especially if you are new to bedding. Please understand that I am not trying to push extra sales here, those of you who have studied the Knowledge Base and forums extensively will understand that my core goal is to help you achieve success.
If you do not speak English and are reading this page using google translate, you are welcome to email me using google translate. We are familiar with this service and will reply / help with bedding in your language.
If you wish to contact me by phone, please check time zones first. It also pays to check what deals your provider is offering for international calls (such as $5 weekends etc).
The country code for NZ is: 0064
Area code: 6
Local number: 7523552
From USA / Canada: 011 64 6 7523552
From UK: 00 64 6 7523552
From Australia: 0011 64 6 7523552
Please observe our time zone and business hours!
Below: A Remington LSS stock (7mm Practical) bedded with MatchGrade by Stephanie Foster.
A clean border on a wood blued rifle.
A bedded and stabilized Remington SPS, ready for long range shooting.
User reviews and comments
G’day to all the precision hunters out there!
I thought l would share some of my experiences with Nathan and Steph here at Terminal Ballistics Research. I live in a different country and have sent many emails, watched the You Tube clips, read Nathans book (many times) and had some very informative phone conversations with Nathan. The help l have received has always been true to Nathans straight to the point approach, lessons learnt from his experiences working on his clients rifles. This same attitude shines through in his books!
I started accurizing my hunting rifles 2 years ago after 20 years of buying this and that at my local gun shops, trying to find the right combination that would make “
a good rifle
”. We have all been there, the salesman in the shop tells you need this ammo, a better scope or even “you get what you pay for so spend some more money on a better rifle!” Not really knowing how or wanting to help in a meaningful way.
There had to be a better way than this
, so after reading lots of articles and researching for many hours to find some better options l found the bedding information on You Tube. I liked the clear, precises way Nathan instructed and the care he showed for his client’s rifle, l sent an email thanking him for his instructional clips at the time not realising the wealth of knowledge that he had on his site and he was prepared to share.
I purchased a XL7 Marlin 30/06 for a start into deer stalking, shooting Sambar out to around 150 yards or so. This rifle would shoot 1.25 moa with the right factory load, in this case Hornady 165gn SP and around 1.5-2” with most others. More than capable of taking a large deer at 150 yards. My situation changed l needed more consistency between loads and the ability to take accurate, longer shots with heavier projectiles. Using Nathan & Steph’s techniques I pillar bedded it into a Boyd’s stock and now have a ‘cheap’ entry level rifle that will shoot .75 moa groups with the same factory load and .5 moa with hand loads. A great result for an under $500 Rifle.
I then set up my varmint rifle a Howa 243W bull barrel, bedded into a Bell & Carlson stock, worked the trigger, lapped the bolt lugs and the barrel, all under Nathans instruction. It now shoots .5moa without fuss and better when l do my bit! Again from a relatively low cost rifle.
I currently have two more projects on the go. The first is a Remington 700 Police 300 Win Mag- my first dedicated long range rifle with all the usual tuning and another one of Nathan recommendations, a Sightron SIII 6-24 x 50 scope. It out performs my other scopes easily and really tops the outfit off nicely. I have just begun load development and shooting my fouling load the rifle printed multiple .6 moa groups so great things are to come from this platform l expect. Having only started reloading recently, Nathan is also helping me develop these skills which is really showing in my load development on all of my calibres.
The last is another Foster recommendation, a terrific Tikka T3 in 308 Win. This is my sons first deer stalking rifle that will soon be bedded into a Bell & Carlson Medalist stock- again using Nathan & Steph’s help to achieve a good outcome on what can be a tricky system to work with.
Please don’t think l am trying to gloat! The exact opposite is the case, l wanted to express that with Nathan’s guidance, some thought, preparation and care it is possible to tune your rifles into very capable hunting tools. I have various brands with different jobs to perform, knowing that they will perform the way that they do now, is a great confidence builder weather the game is 50-500 yards or more.
And one last thing! Please donate to cover Nathans time, as l have expressed the benefits in your development as a precision shooter will far out way the
I could have saved many thousands of dollars if l had this level of help years ago.
(Thanks Marty- glad I could help. NF.)
I bought both the Matchgrade bedding compound and the stock stabilizing compounds for my Remington Hogue 223 Tactical.
The products turned up 3 days later with even more "how to do" instructions. And with help from Nathan via email, it made the job as easy as possible. This was my first attempt to bed any rifle and I had great success. The compounds were easy to use and after 48hrs definitely went hard. My rifle now shoots a 15mm (5 shot group) at 150m. The cheap price of the compounds are a great way to increase accuracy. Would recommend these to anyone. Thanks, good product, good service.
My hunting mate purchased a couple of your bedding kits which we have used. Great product and a great price. Well done.
From having zero gunsmithing knowledge I have used Nathan's bedding compound on several guns now using his written instructions and studying the you tube directions. The instructions are very clear and easy to follow. Nathan goes the extra mile and makes himself available if for any reason you get stuck. The compound is fantastic. Very stable and permanent. It has provided me with very satisfactory results including bringing in grouping on a 1942 Swedish Mauser to under .3 MOA. I highly recommend this product.
Johnny Sherry, New Zealand
Recently bought both your stock stabilizer & bedding compounds – and they have done a fantastic job in my first foray doing that work. Love your products.
I've finally got around to my bedding and stabilizing job. I cast the mold on Saturday and broke it out this evening. I'm very satisfied with the results! The hours I've spend shaping my "dams" payed off and it was quick and easy to do the final touches.
The Hogue stock was quite a struggle to try and get right, but with a bit of luck it worked out fine. The result is a good float and even spread in the stock and an absolute perfect fit. I've attached some photos for your interest.
So, now its just seeing how it will perform, can't wait to get it to the range over the weekend. Thanks for your support and help, its has been a great experience and I'll definitely do this on future projects.
I just wanted to say thanks for your assistance.
I had a cheap Savage Stevens 200 in 243 and the best group I had was about 60mm. I purchased a Boyd’s stock and bedded it with your match grade bedding compound following your instructional videos to the letter and my rifle now shoots 13mm groups.
The whole project cost under $1,000 so that seems pretty good value for a .5moa rifle that also looks and feels very nice. It was my first time bedding a rifle and there’s no way I could have done as good a job without your videos and advice so thanks very much.
Your kit is very good value for money and I will certainly be buying more to do my other rifles.
I wanted to let you know how grateful I am to you for your generous help & advise with my Howa 6.5x55 Swede.
Through your website & with the use of your advise, bedding products & shooting tuition I have;
1. Stiffened the Hogue stock fore end.
2. Front & rear bedded the action.
3. Worked over the trigger to remove creep.
4. Lapped the bolt for even lug contact.
5. Polished the barrel to improve the finishing & accuracy potential of it.
6. Learnt best practice to develop an optimum load that groups sub minute of angle.
7. Learned good prone & bench shooting technique to improve my shot placement in the field.
I have found your help & tuition immensely helpful in developing my Howa
into a really nice accurate deer stalking rifle. I have really enjoyed working through things with you & have learnt a heck of a lot. I was dissappointed to hear on asking, that very few of the
subscribers/readers of your site donate to you. So, to all those people reading this with a conscience, c'mon, do the right thing & donate to Nathan. What he is providing is of huge benefit to us all.
The least we can do is flick $50 or more here & there for his time,
knowledge & expertise.
Keep up the good work,
Principal / Designer - Actionplans Ltd
Design 2 Licensed
ADNZ Professional Member
Thanks Jon, was great to meet and spend time with you.
Just emailing to say that after free floating, bedding and bolt lug lapping, I have managed to shrink the groups from my Ruger M77 MK2 25-06 right down. Finally got on the range today and shot my best ever group of 0.88 MOA. This was done with factory Hornady superformance 90 grain GMX, shot off my home made sandbags. (old jeans filled with kitty litter). My original groups were 2-3+ MOA it is so good to see the work has paid off. I intend to begin reloading soon and to fit a new scope. Anyway. Thank you so much for your help and your amazing customer service. I am going to recommend you to anybody that is going down the same road as me. Now I get to look forward to dropping some deer.
Hope all is well with you. Been a few weeks since I have chatted with you, but I finally got my Savage to the range to see if my bedding job was worth a crap and wanted to let you know how it went.
It was worth a crap!! Between my homemade sandbags, using a sling, and some of my handloads, I shot a couple of very nice groups. One was under a half inch, another was about 5/8".
Just wanted to let you know how it went. The bedding definitely improved the rifle over the Accustock design. Thanks so much Nathan for all your help!!
I just thought you might like to see a group shot at 100yds after bedding with your match grade product. The gun is a Rem 700 in an HS stock with a .308 Win caliber Pac-Nor 1-11" twist 22" heavy sporter barrel, .750 at the muzzle. I'm very pleased with the results after bedding so this email is just a big thank- you for all your help via e-mail and YouTube.
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