Are Tikka barrels slow?

PathFinder

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In the next couple of weeks, I'm going to put together a short action magnum Tikka. I'm trying to keep it on a reasonably tight budget to keep money open for other projects. One way or the other, it will be a short magnum (25 PRC, 7 WSM, or 300 WSM). I'll use HCA mags and I already have a Manners EHT to put it in.
My one decision still to make is whether to use the factory Tikka barrel (24" 300 WSM) or have one made.
The reason is ask about Tikka barrel speeds is that I had a 7 RM that was horribly slow. 2875 w/168 HVLD and a very stiff charge of H1000. A little poking around on the web showed that this is a common trend.
Has anyone else observed this in Tikka barrels, or is it hit and miss in a large number of factory rifles?
I've also read that their throats tend to run fairly long, which would be a good thing. I'm going to shoot the new 205 Berger if I do the 300 WSM. Is that true as well?
I've got no problem buying a different barrel if speed is an issue.
Disclaimer: I don't care if you don't think 100 fps matters, or "the animal won't know the difference." It's going to come into play at range, and I don't mind buying a new barrel.

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SDHNTR

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Not trying to douse your fire here, but why build a short action cartridge on a Tikka that’s not a true short action? Never mind the barrel, I’m not sure the receiver platform is right for your build. Maybe I’m in the minority, but I’d prefer something built specifically for the size of cartridge I’m shooting. Yes, I’m admittedly somewhat anti Tikka, so feel free to take what I say with a grain of salt. I just dislike plastic, and cost cutting measures like bolt stops.

As to your question, if I’m building a custom gun, I’m certainly not screwing the factory barrel back on. You’re already knee deep, wade in completely and put a good barrel on. Throat it for the bullet you want.

Just me, but if you want a custom gun, start over with a quality receiver and go from there. Design it from the ground up the way you want instead of trying to make something do something it wasn’t meant to do. Then you won’t be jamming a square peg into a round hole.
 

Formidilosus

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The reason is ask about Tikka barrel speeds is that I had a 7 RM that was horribly slow. 2875 w/168 HVLD and a very stiff charge of H1000. A little poking around on the web showed that this is a common trend.
Has anyone else observed this in Tikka barrels, or is it hit and miss in a large number of factory rifles?
I've also read that their throats tend to run fairly long, which would be a good thing. I'm going to shoot the new 205 Berger if I do the 300 WSM. Is that true as well?

Typically yes to both. Depending on the gun, they do trend to run a bit lower MV with same ammo as others.





Not trying to douse your fire here, but why build a short action cartridge on a Tikka that’s not a true short action? Never mind the barrel, I’m not sure the receiver platform is right for your build. Maybe I’m in the minority, but I’d prefer something built specifically for the size of cartridge I’m shooting.

All the 223’s on SA’s must suck then....


As a curiously, what’s plastic on a T3x?
 

ram94

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In my opinion it’s better to build a short action cartridge on a Tikka as it is very easy to reload long. Not the case with the long action cartridges as you will run out of room.

My limited experience with a Tikka 7mm-08 has shown good velocity so far. About what I had expected given the 22” barrel and all the test barrels being 24”. I’m 50 fps slower.


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I’m running a 24” superlite in 6.5cm and I’m running about 100fps less than what’s on the box. 143 ELDX seems the worse of all that I’ve tried. Haven’t chronoed it in a year so it may have sped up a bit.
 

Rob5589

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My two, 7/08 and 7RM, run at the velocity expected according to the Barnes data. The only "slow" barrel I have experienced was an Oby, so a custom barrel isn't a 100% guarantee.
 

Roksliding

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Was just shooting my 7mag Tikka T3, all last week doing load development, what I learnt is- my tikka is pretty much 200ish FPS slower than what Nosler book said it should be, at book max I see no signs of excessive pressure so I’m going to keep bumping it up, whether Nosler is exaggerating or maybe erring on the side of caution or tikkas are slow I’m just presenting what I witnessed

for what it’s worth.


Also losing an action screw WILL effect accuracy, my elbow is not a calibrated torque wrench...


But that’s all I know right now
 

Tahoe1305

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My experience with my 6.5C tikka is yes with factory loads is slow. I attribute this in my gun to the lands being at 2.94” and the factory rounds being closer to 2.85”. If I load out closer to the lands and fill the case up with a bit more powder my speeds are much better than factory and on par with what quick load say they should be.

I think what you are building on a tikka action is awesome. I wouldn’t limit it to short action though (and you won’t be), have HCA modify or get a medium or longer bolt stop and load as long as you want in the WSM. It won’t change anything but a small amount of bolt travel.

I’m building a 7 WSM now (unfortunately not on a tikka action, wish I was) and going with a custom CF barrel.

I don’t think the barrels on tikkas are slow, I think the chamber is slow and if you handload you can get the velocities where they should be so shoot whatever barrel fits in the budget.
 

DJL2

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I'm with you...the Tikka is a great medium action. I'm not throwing shade at Defiance, because I love that they do a medium action at all, but I think folks actually started making shouldered pre-fits for Tikka first. I saw one come up for sale and thought "Hmm, would I rather have a nice, new Tikka I can shoot for a bit and build into a project rifle for $665 w/ pic rail or would I rather spend $1600 bucks on just an action and a decent trigger?"

I'd say if you can afford it, get a pre-fit in the 7 of your choice, run it "long" and call it good...but, then, I'm biased...since that's what I'm working towards myself.
 
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PathFinder

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As to the action length, Remington length short actions are terrible short action magnum build platforms. They don't fit with long, heavy bullets very well. Long actions are good for LA magnums, but a bit long for SA magnums. Makes for finicky feeding.
I will not own another R700 pattern action, no matter how much lipstick someone puts on one. The trigger mechanism (and all aftermarket versions I'm aware of, except maybe HS Precision's) just don't hack dust and ice well at all. There's just no sense in paying over 1K plus a trigger for an R700 based action when I can get what is essentially a sporterized Sako TRG for $800 (trigger included). The only features I'd want from any "custom" actions are interchangeable bolt heads and CRF, but both are optional for this build. Reliability in terrible conditions (I'm hard on stuff) is not optional.
Thanks for the feedback on speeds. I've got tons of good 300 WSM brass on hand, so if I can get one in a reasonable amount of time I'll at least try it first and see what speeds I get. If that doesn't work out I'll likely end up with a 7-300 WSM barrel. If the difference is primarily due to the chamber design, that will actually play in my favor when loading long.
 

rtockstein

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I have a theory that Tikka barrels are typically slower because they have a longer than average throat. Similar to how a RUM has a longer head height or throat or whatever you want to call it in order to be able to burn all that powder without going over pressure. So maybe, the max charges for Tikka barrels that are slower would generally be a fair bit higher than book, or at least higher than other barrels that don't have as long a throat.

Thoughts? @Formidilosus ?
 

DJL2

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Someday, we'll live in a brave new world where the folks making the action and barrel spec the charge weights and publish accordingly. It only recently started to bother me as I was digging through SAAMI specs...no appreciable difference in strength between multiple calibers in the same action, yet reloading data built around a rifle/action from decades ago dictating performance and case dimensions. Heck, at least considering different reamer specs would be a start.

Until then, it'll hurt my heart everytime I look at a "classic" cartridge loaded waaaaay under pressure because someone might load it in a Mauser action from the 1800s.
 

DarylG619

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Someday, we'll live in a brave new world where the folks making the action and barrel spec the charge weights and publish accordingly. It only recently started to bother me as I was digging through SAAMI specs...no appreciable difference in strength between multiple calibers in the same action, yet reloading data built around a rifle/action from decades ago dictating performance and case dimensions. Heck, at least considering different reamer specs would be a start.

Until then, it'll hurt my heart everytime I look at a "classic" cartridge loaded waaaaay under pressure because someone might load it in a Mauser action from the 1800s.
As someone who shoots and loads 6.5 x 55 I totally agree. At least we are turning the corner on load data for that cartridge.
 

Sled

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I have a theory that Tikka barrels are typically slower because they have a longer than average throat. Similar to how a RUM has a longer head height or throat or whatever you want to call it in order to be able to burn all that powder without going over pressure. So maybe, the max charges for Tikka barrels that are slower would generally be a fair bit higher than book, or at least higher than other barrels that don't have as long a throat.

Thoughts? @Formidilosus ?
not in my case. i couldn't push my t3 270wsm much above max before i got sticky bolts on the brass. hell my primers would flatten out with medium loads. either way i never saw more than 150fps better than a 270win and often had 75-100fps above the win with my more precise loads.
 

Formidilosus

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I have a theory that Tikka barrels are typically slower because they have a longer than average throat. Similar to how a RUM has a longer head height or throat or whatever you want to call it in order to be able to burn all that powder without going over pressure. So maybe, the max charges for Tikka barrels that are slower would generally be a fair bit higher than book, or at least higher than other barrels that don't have as long a throat.

Thoughts? @Formidilosus ?

For some of the chamberings this seems to be the case. I haven’t had much issue getting appropriate velocities in them, however I don’t generally chase FPS either.
 

16Bore

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Reloading manuals and cartridge boxes are the last place you want to look for velocity numbers.

The actual velocity doesn’t matter as much and knowing the velocity. You can chase that shit all you want, the only thing you get out of it is being able to say you got X bullet to go Y velocity in Z rifle...
 

MattB

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Reloading manuals and cartridge boxes are the last place you want to look for velocity numbers.

The actual velocity doesn’t matter as much and knowing the velocity. You can chase that shit all you want, the only thing you get out of it is being able to say you got X bullet to go Y velocity in Z rifle...
You are going to take all the over-thinking out of this. What fun would that be, not being able to obsess over things that are of little to no practical importance?
 

wind gypsy

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Not trying to douse your fire here, but why build a short action cartridge on a Tikka that’s not a true short action? Never mind the barrel, I’m not sure the receiver platform is right for your build. Maybe I’m in the minority, but I’d prefer something built specifically for the size of cartridge I’m shooting. Yes, I’m admittedly somewhat anti Tikka, so feel free to take what I say with a grain of salt. I just dislike plastic, and cost cutting measures like bolt stops.
As was mentioned, tikkas “one size fits all” action length is about perfect for SAUM/WSM/6.5 PRC/RCM/284/Swede based cases that are neutered in a short action. Defiance, lone peak, and others make the XM action length specifically for these cartridges that are ideal when loaded too long for a short action but short for a long action. Why would the similarly dimensioned tikka action then be a poor choice for these chamberings?
 

Wapiti1

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In my experience, Tikka isn't in the minority for not hitting the target velocity either off the box or out of the book. Even the books don't agree. Too many variables to make things match every time. From a reloading manual perspective, the pressure/velocity relationship is what you are trying to get to. The actual powder charge is just a means to get a matching pressure in your rifle. You verify that by measuring the velocity. It isn't perfect, but it is close enough to keep us from blowing up rifles. The nice people that make ammo want you to buy it, so keep that in mind.

Tikka uses CIP spec reamers and those are the same as SAAMI spec for the .300 WSM. Other, particularly older, cartridges may be different between CIP and SAAMI. Same as they use a 1:11 twist for almost all .308 caliber chamberings verse our 1:10 standard.

Jeremy
 
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