Sometime back, while browsing the Boyds Gunstocks website, I spotted a low priced solution to a long-term problem. About 20 years ago, in a different lifetime, a number of barreled actions came my way. New in the box, they were Interarms Mark X units in a handful of calibers. Over the years, all were built into rifles, and eventually sold as whim and finances dictated.
One remained. A .300 Winchester Magnum barreled action that I'd always fancied would make a fine hunting rifle, and perhaps the last one I'd ever really need. I'd mounted the metal into a Bell and Carlson synthetic stock, and that was a workable solution for many years. The B+C stock easily tamed the recoil of the heavy magnum cartridge, and it's ergonomics were acceptable. But... Plastic is without a soul, and my roving eyes kept coming to wood.... The Boyds laminate seemed a good comprimise, having the stability of plastic while having a 'feel' and a look that only wood can give. So, it was ordered, and at a bargain basement price too.
Making the barreled action fit the 95% inletted stock was a matter of a few hours with Foredom tool, a fine wood chisel, and at times a sharp pen knife. The bolt handle cut had to be made, and a barrel sanding drum on the Foredom made short work of that. The recoil lug was about .040" too fat, and here the wood chisel did a fine job. Both the safety and the magazine plate release also needed to be accounted for, and a diamond drum on a Foredom was used to carefully make those cuts. Once the barreled action was fitted and functional, the sling swivels were removed and the nice recoil pad taped off. What followed was nearly two hours of sanding, working from 120 down to 220, using a steel dowel as a form. Most of the machine marks were removed from the wood, but honestly laziness set in and a few remain.
Finish was done with walnut wood stain in mid sanding, with a final light application after the final sanding. Then, in keeping with it's planned use as a hunting rifle, eight layers of satin Spar polyurethane were applied, with 4-O steel wool rub downs between layers. Shazaam! One decent looking wood stocked hunting rifle, ready for range or field!