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Published on July 20th, 2012 | by Juliet One

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Building a Custom Precision Rifle – Part 3

I began this 3-part series discussing how to build a precision tactical rifle on a budget. This third part of my series is going to talk specifically about having a custom one-off rifle built to the shooter’s specifications.

To build a custom rifle one must seek a reputable gunsmith to perform this task. Before contacting a reputable smith the shooter must identify exactly what he intends the finished product to be.

Like I mentioned in my previous articles, there are some major decisions that have to be made. The first main question I always find myself asking is “what exactly is the intended purpose of this rifle going to be?” That main factor by itself greatly narrows down the field of options. That allows me to at least figure out the caliber of the rifle and the type of stock that I’m looking at outfitting the rifle with.

Once those two major decisions are made now it’s time to figure out the details. The shooter will have to decide what type of action he wants. There are many great custom actions on the market.

If you’re undecided on the type of action, a gunsmith is a good guy to talk to. They work with all sorts of different manufacturers and they know the strengths and weaknesses of these machined parts.

Most of these custom actions are in the price range of $1000.00 dollars or more so I would recommend you consult one of these professional if you have questions. Below are a few manufactures for you to take a look at.

The next thing the shooter will have to figure out is what type of trigger to fit the rifle with. I covered this in my previous articles so I won’t bore you all with a repeat.

The shooter will also have to decide what color scheme and coating the rifle will have. There are a ton of options so if you are undecided I recommend researching different rifles on the web. There is a lot of gun porn on the net and it will give you some good ideas.

I personally like Cerakote for a protective coating and I prefer earth tones on my rifles. I do not like black!!! My biggest reason for this is “there is nothing in nature that is black.” But it’s your rifle and I am of the belief that you have to spend time with it, so it should look sexy to you. Who cares what others think. If you want to wield a “black ops ninja rifle” than gas on it!!

There are many reputable custom rifle shops in the U.S. that can perform these services. The one I am going to introduce you to is the shop that I use exclusively, mainly because I know how they operate and I stand behind them 100%. I don’t personally vouche for too many people or businesses, but I will vouche for this operation. I think it says a lot when the price tag for one of these boomsticks is usually in the $4000.00 range.

I want to introduce you to a company in the business of building top of the line tactical precision rifles. The company I’m referring to is Short Action Customs LLC (S.A.C.) based out of Wellington, Ohio.

S.A.C. is owned and operated by Mark Gordon. Mark is a Marine Corps Veteran who loves firearms, more specifically precision rifles. When Mark left the Marine Corps after 5 years of duty and multiple tours to Iraq he decided he was going to make his passion a career.

He attended Montgomery Community College in Troy, North Carolina to learn the trade of Gunsmithing. Shortly after graduating he took it upon himself to gain as much knowledge as he could from some of the top gunsmiths in the country. By sacrificing and doing this he now operates his own custom shop and produces some of the finest rifles on the market today.

I have had the privilege over the last couple of years to spend a good amount of time in Mark’s shop. I have to say I am thoroughly impressed with the standards that Mark has set in place for his staff and business. The standards of integrity, attention to detail, and customer service that Mark holds his shop to is honestly second to none. There are no shortcuts taken – no matter what – when it comes to a rifle he or his staff are building or a service they are providing for their customers.

Mark is extremely innovative and is constantly searching for and developing new techniques for producing the most accurate rifles on the market today. Mark is never content with the status quo. He has developed his own specialty fixtures and tools to perform advanced gunsmithing techniques that many shops simply cannot do. As a matter of fact, a few of these techniques are currently patent pending. In a time of advanced technology and equipment Mark is a true pioneer and innovator.

S.A.C. works with a variety of different manufactures to build their top-of-the-line rifles. Whatever the end goal is for the shooter, S.A.C. has a solution for it. S.A.C. also carries their own line of signature actions called the “Alpha 11.” The action was developed in collaboration with Defiance Machine. S.A.C. believes that it is the finest action available for the tactical rifle today. I happen to feel the same. http://shortactioncustoms.com/?p=748

I have personally owned a number of different rifles built by some of the biggest names in the industry. I can say with my first hand knowledge of how S.A.C. operates and their attention to detail I need to look no further. The rifles that come out of their shop are truly works of art that perform to the highest standards in the industry.

I hope you all enjoyed the series and as usual if any of you have any questions about anything in regards to the content discussed feel free to ask. If I don’t have an answer I will consult the right people to get you the answer.

Juliet One



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