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"Mannlicher" Stocks vs "Sporter" Stocks

01 Feb 2014
@ 03:18 am (GMT)

Karl Thompson

Hi all,
In a previous era, "full-wood"/"mannlicher" stocks were the norm. Is it fashion, weight or function that "sporter" style stocks dominate these days?

I wonder how a rifle, given a complete, full-length bed in the barrel channel would shoot. Have you ever tried this Nathan ?

Would the barrel be more controlled and "damped" if you will, giving more consistent vibrations/oscillations and be thus more accurate? It might be heavier, but this is normally (within reason) a good thing for long range accuracy. It would probably ride the daypack better too.

Does anyone have any experience with this or is it just nobody wants to cop the ribbing from his mates about owning a "Man-licker"???


01 Feb 2014
@ 03:46 pm (GMT)

Nathan Foster

Re: "Mannlicher" Stocks vs "Sporter" Stocks
Hi Karl, the full stocks fell out of favor for reasons of both weight and accuracy. Stock warpage was of great concern, no matter how carefully the stock was originally fitted.

Yes, I have mucked around with barrel bedding and it works.

Everything you say is correct, it is possible to full length bed a barrel but it is a tricky proposition because you have to take care not to preload the forend when setting it down into the mortice. It is very difficult to create a stress free bedding job over such a length. The stock has to be stress free to the point that if it is laid down over a pack for shooting, it does not change harmonics. The barrel needs to be fully trapped and clamped or locked in place. The bedding needs to be thick, not a shim, in order to withstand warping. If all goes well, the barrel bedding can act as a harmonic dampener. That said, there is a degree of heat trapping.

So yes, it can be done. The bigger question is why bother. We often have to muck around with these jobs when dealing with full wooded SMLE rifles in an attempt to preserve the rifle in its original configuration while also attempting to improve accuracy- but to deliberately buy a modern rifle of this style seems like a lot of unnecessary work unless you have a real hankering for wood.

On a side note, I have also tested rifles by completely removing / cutting off the forend to observe the full effects of harmonics. The effects are incredibly dramatic. Resting the barrel very gently on sand bags, firing a group (large), then shifting the sand bag forwards just a few inches and shooting again to see a huge change in POI, group still large. I had not expected any degree of accuracy during these tests, just wanted to explore and observe the full extent of harmonics.


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