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Review: Jarrett Signature Rifle

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July 19, 2011

Review: Jarrett Signature Rifle

By David E. Petzal

I've recently had the pleasure of trying out a Jarrett Signature rifle in .300 Win Mag. It was a true revelation, but before we get to the gun itself, let’s get to what’s foremost in your minds. First, it costs $7,640. This is medium priced as custom big-game rifles go. You can pay about half that for a very good rifle, or twice as much. Second, they did not give it to me despite the fact that I asked to keep it. So, without further folderol, let us proceed.

Kenny Jarrett, in case you’re new to all this, is one of the two or three most influential rifle designers of the late 20th century. He established a new standard of accuracy for everything that came out of his shop, from .22 centerfire to .50 BMG. His rifles were built mainly from McMillan stocks, Schneider barrels, and Remington actions. But that has changed.

Jarrett now makes his own Kevlar-graphite stocks, his own button-rifled, hand-lapped barrels, and his own bolt action, which he calls the Tri-Lock, because it has three locking lugs. Introduced in 2000, the Tri-Lock utilizes a unique bolt bushing that seals the locking lugs at the moment of firing and acts as a bolt guide. It’s made right- and left-handed in nearly all sizes.

He uses Jewell triggers, because there’s no sense trying to top them, and Remington 700 bottom metal. (What, you ask, is an aluminum footplate/trigger guard doing on a rifle that costs $7,000 plus? Because it saves about half a pound; if you want steel you can have steel—and carry it, too.)

Jarrett Rifles’ operation is much closer to aerospace than it is to traditional gunmaking. All the machinery is CNC and EDM; I think the only real hand labor goes into lapping the barrel. To be done properly that takes a degree of “feel” that can’t be imparted to a machine. Kenny claims he gets his uncanny accuracy from nearly perfect alignment of barrel and receiver, complete lack of stress in the receiver and bedding, and a top-quality barrel. Plus some voodoo that he won’t talk about.

The weight of my rifle with scope is 8 ½ pounds; trigger pull 1 pound 8 ounces, barrel 25 inches with a muzzle brake of Kenny’s own design. The fit and finish are flawless and, as John Blauvelt put it when he handled the Signature, “This is a gun that was built by a man who uses rifles, not by a corporate entity.”

Next post: Does it shoot? Clench your sphincters.

Comments (73)

Top Rated
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from jbird wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

I'm sure its a shooter, for that kind of money it has to be.

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from Moose1980 wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

I'd like at least 1 custom gun before I die. My problem is if I saved the money for one, I'd probably use it for a hunting trip and take along my Savage. I need to hit the lotto!

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Greenhead wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

How does the finish on that stock feel? It looks quite rough.

Thanks for the review; it's nice to have goals.

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from steve182 wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

I'm sure it's sniper quality, but i'd have to make 10x what i currently make to even consider spending 8 g's on a rifle, and i'm not poor. If i made a living off hunting, or even if i were a childless bachelor, i'd certainly entertain the idea. Just reading about it does make me want to splurge and buy that Kimber that's been on my list for 5 years. Curious to hear how this Jarret prints but i'd expect clover leafs.

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from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

$7640.00-- Makes me appreciate all my guns that much more! Thanks for the review of another Damned Expensive Product!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mjenkins1 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I could care less what the price is of the products that are reviewed on here. I am in no way capable of purchasing a gun with that price tag right now, however it is nice to read about because you get what you pay for (for the most part); and I'm sure you know where the money went once you fire the gun.

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from MJC wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

That bolt looks very interesting, I'm going to have to look that up.

I'm trying to think of a hunting situation that this rifle would be perfect for, but honestly I'm not quite seeing one.

The barrel is beanfield rifle length but the rifle isn't typical beanfield heavy and the cartridge has a bit too much recoil. Forests and mountains are out. Open plains muley hunt?

Of course, maybe I'm trying too hard to come up with a hunting application. Any SWAT sniper would bend over backwards to get one of these.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from SL wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

When guns of this price get reviewed, it makes me appreciate the run of the mill Remington's, Savage's, Ruger's, etc. even more. They will kill game just the same at any distance one should be shooting at game in the first place. And they will cost a fraction of what this one costs.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Dave,

With all the CNC work it seems as if he could do a bit better on price. I know Kenny has to eat and keep the lights on but that is pretty steep. He freely admitted several years ago that he had saturated his market so the high price must be a coping device.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mike Diehl wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Some previous blogger said it best. Life's too short to hunt with an ugly rifle.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from focusfront wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I just get a kick out of the fact that accuracy specific Kenny Jarrett chambered this rifle in the almost fifty year old .300 Win Mag. What, are there no short/fat/beltless/wildcat/proprietary/blownout/shortened/lengthened/based-on-the-.404 Jefferey cased rounds to pick from? Doesn't Kenny know that the combination of a short case neck and belt leads to trouble? Or does Kenny know that sometimes things only matter when they matter and the .300 Win Mag is a fantastic round?

For the rest, it sounds like what you are paying for here is Jarrett's name and a certain amount of hand lapping. I'm wondering how straight a plastic machine made gun would have to shoot to make me buy it. Can't wait to hear what you've got, Dave.

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from steve182 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Is that stock covered in Rhino-liner? or is it that basement floor epoxy paint?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

A friend of mine who is a connoisseur of fine guns says you forget all about the price before you even get it home. I am assuming he has not been home for years.

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from rob wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Yeah, I'm with Focusfront - Why the .300 Winch? I love it, personally feeling it's the best of all the big .30's for accuracy, shootability and affordability. Why not the .300 Jarrett? Inquiring minds want to know.......

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from CHKILCHII wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Hey petzal, how about a caption contest with this as the prize.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from crowman wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

It sure is nice to see left-handed guns that are of a quality that you would like to own. I too suffer from DEP DISEASE [being lefthanded] and would look longingly at a rifle or shotgun that you wanted and being told no they don't make it in lefthand but they had a piece of crap in lefthand like we were too stupid to know what a good rifle was or didn't have the money for one. Being about the age of the DEP i'm sure he remembers the bad old days. So DEP keep showing lefthand gear and make the righthand people ride in back of the bus. The view in front of the bus looking at left-handed gear is breathtaking.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

A fine looking rifle, indeed. It looks like they screwed up and put the bolt handle on the wrong side :o)

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from Ed J wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

No WAM thats just an inverted picture. :P

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

1 pound 8 ounces?

OOPS!

Air Ball! (Bullet)

I remember back in 95, anything you want of accuracy is by hand. But today with computers (not commodore 64's) hard wired into lathes, even before the slightest nanometer off it's instantly corrected.

I remember bending aircraft oxygen, hydraulic and fuel lines of all sizes by hand. Now you take a chunk of tubing, slide it over the mandrel set the clamp (probably self clamping now) input the part number or perimeters and hit the return button and stand back for a precision made product every time.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

This looks like a hell of a rifle, I'd love one but NO CAN DO.

Moose1980,
You'd probably have a better time on your hunt if you took your Savage rather than worry about a seven grand rifle.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

This looks like a hell of a rifle, I'd love one but NO CAN DO.

Moose1980,
You'd probably have a better time on your hunt if you took your Savage rather than worry about a seven grand rifle.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Beekeeper

I hear'ya, but he has to pay for the equipment. Kinda like Doctors charging these so called outrageous fees. lets see, you have to pay the Nurse, X-Ray Tech, Lab Tech and those two front office folks, that's 74 bucks an hour without adding the clinic equipment and rent for the building and the doctor paying himself. WOW! BIG BUCKS! And that's not counting all that school loans he has to pay back!!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Cbass wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I've seen groups shot at 600 yards with a .300 Jarrett, and they were spectacular.

@MJC: A man who can afford a Marco Polo Sheep hunt can afford this rifle. And you'll want all the accuracy it offers at the ranges which those sheep are often taken.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Sorry but that thing just doesn't ring my bell. For only $450 you can get a Vanguard 2 in 300 Win or Wby mag and a guarantee of 1 moa. Makes a lot more sense to yours truly.

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from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

"the Tri-Lock utilizes a unique bolt bushing that seals the locking lugs at the moment of firing and acts as a bolt guide"

Mr. Petzal,
With all due respect, while I have not seen the Jarrett Tri-Lock up close nor handled it, the unique bolt bushing you refer to doesn't seem unique at all, if all it does is seal the lug raceways and act as a bolt guide. The Savage Model 110 has had them since Brewer designed that rifle in the 50's.

And the bolt sleeve on the Browning A- and X-Bolts perform the same function.

Proof that Brewer had it right the first time.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Why .300WM instead of .300 Jarrett? Perhaps because shooters have wised up and realized the .300 Jarrett is nothing more than the .300 Weatherby with normal shoulders?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

...and just what is wrong with Weatherby shoulders, might I ask?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

One out of three things (weight, brake, chambering) need to change to make this thing right -

1: Ditch the brake. It's heavy enough to make .300 WM recoil very workable.

2: Keep the brake and make it lighter, then one of those horrible devices might be worth it.

3: Move up to .300 Jarrett. At that weight with that cartridge it might need the brake.

Cut the price by a few grand and I'll shut up. I'll nitpick all I want for almost $8k.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

One question though:

What's with the notches on the muzzle? The brake doesn't look removable, so what are they for? Is there an insert that turns the thunder ports "off"?

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from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

WAM,

exactly! nothing is wrong with the Weatherby.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from MReeder wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Count me among those who don't see the value for the money. If the purpose is accuracy, you can find a whole range of $400-$800 dollar rifles that will give you 1 moa out of the box. Normally I would expect to see that kind of price only if there is a combination of supurb wood, fantastic checkering and some pretty good engraving, with maybe a chauffer to the gun range thrown in along with a couple of dancing maids. But a plain-Jane looking rifle with synthetic stock is going to have to do a helluva lot more than keep three shots inside an inch at 100 yards to warrant $8K. I've got three rifles in my gun cabinet that will do that, and the most expensive one set me back about $600 at the time and would cost about $900 now. The other one was $450 and the most recent cost me $225. THAT is bang for your buck.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Moose1980 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

DEP goes through all the trouble and sacrifice to test this rifle for us and we do is complain. How ungrateful of us.....what a thankless job you have Mr. Petzal. :)

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Moose1980

It's a crappy job, but someone has to do it! LOL!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from prince1223 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Why pay the money for a Jarrett, because it's worth it. Best money I've ever spent. The 2 hour ride back from Kenny's shop was like taking the prom queen home knowing she was gonna give it up. Bottom line, the gun performs exceptionally.

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from aferraro wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I agree with most of the posts that don't see the value here. I realize you can spend 100k on a porsche when a chevy will get you to work, but at least you get to drive the porsche! $8,000 gun that looks like an off the rack savage. Sure, you can pay twice as much for a gun that's a work of art, but many of those purchases are investments and they have resale value. Why pay that kind of coin for function? The "middle of the road" is where you get run over. I guess i'm not their target market. Now for a classic O/U with a bunch of engraving..........

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from ishawooa wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

No doubt a nice shooting rifle with an unnecessarily complicated bolt innovation which is not required but adds a uniqueness that only Jarrett provides. As far as the .300 belted mags, all of them work well. I never was aware that the belt was a problem until after decades of successful use someone informed me. Sure was a shocker to learn that my old .300 Winchester was prone to all sorts of problems that I somehow had failed to notice due to their absence. I would just as soon buy a Cooper or a Dakota for considerably less money plus they are more attractive and sufficiently accurate.

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from davidpetzal wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

To Moose1980: I'm glad someone understands my situation.

To O Garcia: With all due respect, I think you need to take another look at the way the Savage lugs work and the way the Tri-Lock lugs work.

To AFerraro: If you had the chance to inspect this rifle in person, you wouldn't say it looks like a Savage.

To All: Reserve judgment until you read the next two posts.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Steve in Virginia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

At that price I would hope the rifle would walk itself to my tree stand.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jere Smith wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I am happy with my Remington products! But if I had more money than sense I might buy something like that.

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from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

We all must understand that Dave doesn't get enough griping and nagging at home. He obviously craves our loving attention as he constantly parades these expensive pieces of work by the cheapest buch of B@$t@rds on the world wide web! Dave we will continue to be here for you buddy but please toss in the ocassional Savage Axis, Mossberg ATR and Marlin X7 to keep our salivary glands in proper working order!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntingismylife99 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Wow all i can say is that gun is sweet!For $7,000+ it must be a great tack driver, keep up the good work David!

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from aferraro wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

True enough Dave- I haven't seen this gun in person. I live near a Cabela's and spend some time in their gun library, which has opened my eyes and my wallet to a whole new world. My thinking is that mass producers have found ways to achieve custom shop accuracy at a fraction of the cost. Today's $800 Remington will shoot with any custom rifle I've seen from 25 or 50 years ago (and probably match some of the custom guns produced today). To pay $8,000, I'd really have to love the gun and believe it would hold its value. That being said, a beautiful gun holds up a lot better than a beautiful girl and requires far less maintenance.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I seem to recall reading somewhere (may have been here) that custom guns with tupperware stocks lose resale value like no other class of gun.
I'm with Beekeeper on this one.
Dave would like to read your thoughts on the Vanguard 2.

aferraro you said a mouthful about women and guns. However, that gun won't keep you warm on a cold winter's night.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Shane, Those notches work great if you need to open a case of C-rations. Somehow I don't think that is what Kenny intended though.

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from RipperIII wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Unless things change radically, including the current administration, I'll probably never own a gun such as this,...but I sure do like to read about 'em.

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from Zermoid wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

If the current administration doesn't change soon you won't be allowed to own a gun. Period.

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from davidpetzal wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

To Del in KS: I was supposed to get a Vanguard II in .308 this April. When it never arrived, I sent a WTF e-mail to the person at Weatherby with whom I was dealing and never got an answer. I am baffled.

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from action1250 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Sorry, $7,000 for a rifle that doesn't kill any better than a $1,000 rifle?
Dead is dead. The game doesn't care how much the gun costs and when they all sit around the campfire they are still DRT!
Am sure Jarrett make a fine gun but just not for me!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

A Savage Axis, Mossberg ATR and Marlin X7 ????

Beekeeper, wash out your mouth with Octagon Soap!

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from scratchgolf72 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

you guys can say all you want, "yea my 1000 dollar rifle does everything your 7000 dollar rifle does"....yea, but my rifle is custom and cost 7000 dollars. its more of a status thing i think....

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from hengst wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Mighty fun rifle. honestly if I had the cash I would own one, heck with it. I could not fire one to test and return to sender...it would be like a one night stand with Megan Fox ...just a teasng memory

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from shane wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Just like you pay a higher and higher premium for increasing increments of performance with a car, you will for a rifle too.

You can get a car that goes 175 for under $200k. To get one that goes over 200 you pay double for that extra 25 mph.

You can get a half MOA rifle for $1000-2000. This thing will probably be well under. It's what Jarrett does. You pay accordingly.

When you get towards the top or are the one on top, you can charge more and more for that little bit you beat everyone else by.

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from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I must say the stock is real pretty, it looks just like the spray paint my wife puts on her plant pots, did Jarret do this to get the gun to appeal to women so they won't divorce their husband for blowing $8000.00 on a gun? If so he is a genius!

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

The trick is to make sure all your new rifles resemble ones you have owned for years. Lends credence to "Why Honey, this old thing?" Leave them laying out in plain view once in a while and complain about how hard it is to get that coper fouling out after years of shooting it. OPDEC at its finest, but never lie.

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from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

No, I don't have 8,000 dollars. So, I'll take your word for it.

I suppose it is worth it. If you have to ask, as they say...

On the other hand, there's that 1995 vintage, pre-Accu-Trigger Savage M112FLVSS in .25-06 that Jim Carmichael fired from a benchrest to a 1.577" group at 500 yards with Federal Premium 117 grain Sierra BTs, and you can see why there's a strong following for Savage and other "common people" rifles.

Plus there's always the "load development" qualifier on Jarrett rifles and ammunition, at least way back then. As Ross Seyfried used to ask back when he was still writing for Wolfe regarding load development, "what's wrong with the rifle (obviously he's not a Jarrett fan)?"

Of course, a lot could have changed between then and now.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

That should have been M112FVSS. Jim is right handed, I think. Altho I remember 5 letters. I'll check my old OL's.

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from breadfan wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Personally, I think it's a huge rip-off. I don't care how much money I make, I would never invest that much in a rifle. And it's just a medium priced rifle at that. Talk about your suckers! I have two very nice Weatherbys, a Mark V Carbine and a VGL carbine that weigh less and both shoot less than 3/4 groups. Both are beautiful guns. That custom BS is for the true SUCKER that has nothing better to do than throw his money away. I can get a BBL lapped, action fully bedded and stress relieved for under 250.00. mAnd still have enough money left over to buy a nice used truck. Kelvar stocks! Please, give me a break!

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from jay wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

At midlife, some guys buy corvettes, others buy $8,000 rifles.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Dave, I hope that is not a bad omen. My rifle still is not here. The gunshop called UPS and raised hell. They said it would arrive tomorrow. Will believe it when I see it. The USPS has better service and better prices they just don't ship new guns.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

WAM,
Years ago Pat Mc Manus wrote a funny article about gun running. Put a shade and electric cord on that new rifle and sneak it into the house disguised as a lamp.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Del,
Your lucky it's coming UPS. They have a great tracking service, if it was Fed Ex I'd be worried.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Del

You should have ponied up a couple more bucks and got that Mark V .300 Weatherby I told you about. My brother looked at it for me and said it was LNIB. You could have been shooting by now for $200 more $$$.

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from 99explorer wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

For that kind of money, I would expect a hand-checkered Circassian walnut stock custom-fitted to my dimensions.

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from shane wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Del, that might be all you're eating after purchasing this here rifle.

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from MJC wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Ahem... it's been days... bring on part 2!

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from Tim Platt wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

So next post we are all going to be astounded by the accuracy and claim it was worth 8 grand? It seems to me you tested a Vanguard Sub MOA that shot .177" groups. That gun is well under $1,000. I hope the Jarrett rifle is eight times as accurate.

I am with the crowd. For that much money I want a rifle that shoots AND looks like Michelangelo carved it.

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from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Dave is probably shooting hundreds of rounds through that gun so he can get one or two groups that will print in 3/4 of a inch then he'll tell us he shot them at 600 yards when he was really at 100. The only person who needs a gun that will shoot good at 800 yards is a military sniper or a hunter who can't get any closer because he just plain sstinks at hunting!

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from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I really should keep quiet but I never do. I think Kenny Jarret is full of himself and his products..

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from tmbryant wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Why the .300 Win Mag and not one of the current short beltless magnums? It's really pretty simple, if you go on a hunting trip with a .300 Win Mag and for some reason your ammuntion doesn't make it, you can go into any store in hunting country or probably anywhere else and pick up a box of .300 Win Mags. You may or may not be able to pick up a box of .300 WSM's. More than likely a rifle that is chambered for a .300 Win Mag will hold one more round in the magazine than one chambered for a WSM. The beltless magnums are about .020" larger in diameter at the base than the belted magnums are at the belt. This larger diameter can make it where you lose magazine capacity.

What do you get when you buy a Jarrett rifle that you don't get from a custom maker who builds rifles for considerably less money? You get guaranteed accuracy. A load is worked up for the rifle that will get the accuracy that Kenny guarantees. If the rifle won't do it, then another barrel is installed until the rifle will obtain the accuracy level that Kenny guarantees. It won't leave his shop until it delivers the accuracy that he guarantees. Every bit of this takes time and it costs money.

I'm a friend of Kenny and have been in his shop. I also build custom rifles in Texas. I don't have the time or the employees to offer the accuracy guarantee that Kenny offers. My rifles are also not priced the same as his. Either way you are paying for what you are getting. You go with a custom rifle maker like myself, the customer does the load work up and then if the accuracy level isn't what is expected, then the customer pays for any additional barrels that it takes to make it shoot or the barrel is replaced by the barrel maker provided that there wasn't a problem with the work done by the rifle maker. Either way, you get what you are buying. Lots of guys have more money than they have time. For those guys, going with a Jarrett rifle is the way to go. Kenny takes the uncertainty away and the owner doesn't have to take the time to work up a load for the rifle.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

All the time I have spent tuning rifles and loads would be about equal to the money that I could have made doing paying work instead of fooling around with rifles and loads.

I think you hit the nail on the head when you say that a rifle like this is the surefire shortcut to accuracy.

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from BubbaK wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I don't understand why people have to tear something down just because it's expensive. I mean, it's a beautiful piece of equipment, and if it shoots as well as Dave says, then just appreciate it. I'll never be able to afford a $250,000 Ferrari, or a million dollar Limborghini (sp?), but that doesn't mean that I can't appreciate it. Mind you, I wouldn't pay that much for a rifle myself, but I can appreciate the artistry and craftsmanship. It's market economics - if some sucker's willing to pay that much for it, then more power to him, and more power to the manufacturer who has to rely on selling only a few of these things each year to be able to pay his people, meet his bills, and keep his doors open. I can appreciate the Taj Mahal, but I'd never spend billions to build it - even if I had the money to do so. But I'm a Midwesterner, and that goes against everything we believe in lol...

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Some folks would complain if you hung 'em with a new rope, my Dad used to always say.

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from RES1956 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

I hope it shoots because it damn sure ain't a thing of beauty,,,,

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from Moose1980 wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

I'd like at least 1 custom gun before I die. My problem is if I saved the money for one, I'd probably use it for a hunting trip and take along my Savage. I need to hit the lotto!

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from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Dave,

With all the CNC work it seems as if he could do a bit better on price. I know Kenny has to eat and keep the lights on but that is pretty steep. He freely admitted several years ago that he had saturated his market so the high price must be a coping device.

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from MJC wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

That bolt looks very interesting, I'm going to have to look that up.

I'm trying to think of a hunting situation that this rifle would be perfect for, but honestly I'm not quite seeing one.

The barrel is beanfield rifle length but the rifle isn't typical beanfield heavy and the cartridge has a bit too much recoil. Forests and mountains are out. Open plains muley hunt?

Of course, maybe I'm trying too hard to come up with a hunting application. Any SWAT sniper would bend over backwards to get one of these.

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from SL wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

When guns of this price get reviewed, it makes me appreciate the run of the mill Remington's, Savage's, Ruger's, etc. even more. They will kill game just the same at any distance one should be shooting at game in the first place. And they will cost a fraction of what this one costs.

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from Mike Diehl wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Some previous blogger said it best. Life's too short to hunt with an ugly rifle.

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from focusfront wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I just get a kick out of the fact that accuracy specific Kenny Jarrett chambered this rifle in the almost fifty year old .300 Win Mag. What, are there no short/fat/beltless/wildcat/proprietary/blownout/shortened/lengthened/based-on-the-.404 Jefferey cased rounds to pick from? Doesn't Kenny know that the combination of a short case neck and belt leads to trouble? Or does Kenny know that sometimes things only matter when they matter and the .300 Win Mag is a fantastic round?

For the rest, it sounds like what you are paying for here is Jarrett's name and a certain amount of hand lapping. I'm wondering how straight a plastic machine made gun would have to shoot to make me buy it. Can't wait to hear what you've got, Dave.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Sorry but that thing just doesn't ring my bell. For only $450 you can get a Vanguard 2 in 300 Win or Wby mag and a guarantee of 1 moa. Makes a lot more sense to yours truly.

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from prince1223 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Why pay the money for a Jarrett, because it's worth it. Best money I've ever spent. The 2 hour ride back from Kenny's shop was like taking the prom queen home knowing she was gonna give it up. Bottom line, the gun performs exceptionally.

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from steve182 wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

I'm sure it's sniper quality, but i'd have to make 10x what i currently make to even consider spending 8 g's on a rifle, and i'm not poor. If i made a living off hunting, or even if i were a childless bachelor, i'd certainly entertain the idea. Just reading about it does make me want to splurge and buy that Kimber that's been on my list for 5 years. Curious to hear how this Jarret prints but i'd expect clover leafs.

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from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

$7640.00-- Makes me appreciate all my guns that much more! Thanks for the review of another Damned Expensive Product!

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from Mjenkins1 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I could care less what the price is of the products that are reviewed on here. I am in no way capable of purchasing a gun with that price tag right now, however it is nice to read about because you get what you pay for (for the most part); and I'm sure you know where the money went once you fire the gun.

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from steve182 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Is that stock covered in Rhino-liner? or is it that basement floor epoxy paint?

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from Moose1980 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

DEP goes through all the trouble and sacrifice to test this rifle for us and we do is complain. How ungrateful of us.....what a thankless job you have Mr. Petzal. :)

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from ishawooa wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

No doubt a nice shooting rifle with an unnecessarily complicated bolt innovation which is not required but adds a uniqueness that only Jarrett provides. As far as the .300 belted mags, all of them work well. I never was aware that the belt was a problem until after decades of successful use someone informed me. Sure was a shocker to learn that my old .300 Winchester was prone to all sorts of problems that I somehow had failed to notice due to their absence. I would just as soon buy a Cooper or a Dakota for considerably less money plus they are more attractive and sufficiently accurate.

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from davidpetzal wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

To Moose1980: I'm glad someone understands my situation.

To O Garcia: With all due respect, I think you need to take another look at the way the Savage lugs work and the way the Tri-Lock lugs work.

To AFerraro: If you had the chance to inspect this rifle in person, you wouldn't say it looks like a Savage.

To All: Reserve judgment until you read the next two posts.

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from Greenhead wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

How does the finish on that stock feel? It looks quite rough.

Thanks for the review; it's nice to have goals.

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from buckhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

A friend of mine who is a connoisseur of fine guns says you forget all about the price before you even get it home. I am assuming he has not been home for years.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

A fine looking rifle, indeed. It looks like they screwed up and put the bolt handle on the wrong side :o)

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from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Beekeeper

I hear'ya, but he has to pay for the equipment. Kinda like Doctors charging these so called outrageous fees. lets see, you have to pay the Nurse, X-Ray Tech, Lab Tech and those two front office folks, that's 74 bucks an hour without adding the clinic equipment and rent for the building and the doctor paying himself. WOW! BIG BUCKS! And that's not counting all that school loans he has to pay back!!

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from Cbass wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I've seen groups shot at 600 yards with a .300 Jarrett, and they were spectacular.

@MJC: A man who can afford a Marco Polo Sheep hunt can afford this rifle. And you'll want all the accuracy it offers at the ranges which those sheep are often taken.

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from Steve in Virginia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

At that price I would hope the rifle would walk itself to my tree stand.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I seem to recall reading somewhere (may have been here) that custom guns with tupperware stocks lose resale value like no other class of gun.
I'm with Beekeeper on this one.
Dave would like to read your thoughts on the Vanguard 2.

aferraro you said a mouthful about women and guns. However, that gun won't keep you warm on a cold winter's night.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Shane, Those notches work great if you need to open a case of C-rations. Somehow I don't think that is what Kenny intended though.

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from jbird wrote 2 years 40 weeks ago

I'm sure its a shooter, for that kind of money it has to be.

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from rob wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Yeah, I'm with Focusfront - Why the .300 Winch? I love it, personally feeling it's the best of all the big .30's for accuracy, shootability and affordability. Why not the .300 Jarrett? Inquiring minds want to know.......

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from CHKILCHII wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Hey petzal, how about a caption contest with this as the prize.

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from crowman wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

It sure is nice to see left-handed guns that are of a quality that you would like to own. I too suffer from DEP DISEASE [being lefthanded] and would look longingly at a rifle or shotgun that you wanted and being told no they don't make it in lefthand but they had a piece of crap in lefthand like we were too stupid to know what a good rifle was or didn't have the money for one. Being about the age of the DEP i'm sure he remembers the bad old days. So DEP keep showing lefthand gear and make the righthand people ride in back of the bus. The view in front of the bus looking at left-handed gear is breathtaking.

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from Ed J wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

No WAM thats just an inverted picture. :P

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from Clay Cooper wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

1 pound 8 ounces?

OOPS!

Air Ball! (Bullet)

I remember back in 95, anything you want of accuracy is by hand. But today with computers (not commodore 64's) hard wired into lathes, even before the slightest nanometer off it's instantly corrected.

I remember bending aircraft oxygen, hydraulic and fuel lines of all sizes by hand. Now you take a chunk of tubing, slide it over the mandrel set the clamp (probably self clamping now) input the part number or perimeters and hit the return button and stand back for a precision made product every time.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

This looks like a hell of a rifle, I'd love one but NO CAN DO.

Moose1980,
You'd probably have a better time on your hunt if you took your Savage rather than worry about a seven grand rifle.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

This looks like a hell of a rifle, I'd love one but NO CAN DO.

Moose1980,
You'd probably have a better time on your hunt if you took your Savage rather than worry about a seven grand rifle.

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from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

"the Tri-Lock utilizes a unique bolt bushing that seals the locking lugs at the moment of firing and acts as a bolt guide"

Mr. Petzal,
With all due respect, while I have not seen the Jarrett Tri-Lock up close nor handled it, the unique bolt bushing you refer to doesn't seem unique at all, if all it does is seal the lug raceways and act as a bolt guide. The Savage Model 110 has had them since Brewer designed that rifle in the 50's.

And the bolt sleeve on the Browning A- and X-Bolts perform the same function.

Proof that Brewer had it right the first time.

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from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Why .300WM instead of .300 Jarrett? Perhaps because shooters have wised up and realized the .300 Jarrett is nothing more than the .300 Weatherby with normal shoulders?

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

...and just what is wrong with Weatherby shoulders, might I ask?

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from shane wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

One out of three things (weight, brake, chambering) need to change to make this thing right -

1: Ditch the brake. It's heavy enough to make .300 WM recoil very workable.

2: Keep the brake and make it lighter, then one of those horrible devices might be worth it.

3: Move up to .300 Jarrett. At that weight with that cartridge it might need the brake.

Cut the price by a few grand and I'll shut up. I'll nitpick all I want for almost $8k.

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from shane wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

One question though:

What's with the notches on the muzzle? The brake doesn't look removable, so what are they for? Is there an insert that turns the thunder ports "off"?

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from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

WAM,

exactly! nothing is wrong with the Weatherby.

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from MReeder wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Count me among those who don't see the value for the money. If the purpose is accuracy, you can find a whole range of $400-$800 dollar rifles that will give you 1 moa out of the box. Normally I would expect to see that kind of price only if there is a combination of supurb wood, fantastic checkering and some pretty good engraving, with maybe a chauffer to the gun range thrown in along with a couple of dancing maids. But a plain-Jane looking rifle with synthetic stock is going to have to do a helluva lot more than keep three shots inside an inch at 100 yards to warrant $8K. I've got three rifles in my gun cabinet that will do that, and the most expensive one set me back about $600 at the time and would cost about $900 now. The other one was $450 and the most recent cost me $225. THAT is bang for your buck.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Moose1980

It's a crappy job, but someone has to do it! LOL!

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from aferraro wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I agree with most of the posts that don't see the value here. I realize you can spend 100k on a porsche when a chevy will get you to work, but at least you get to drive the porsche! $8,000 gun that looks like an off the rack savage. Sure, you can pay twice as much for a gun that's a work of art, but many of those purchases are investments and they have resale value. Why pay that kind of coin for function? The "middle of the road" is where you get run over. I guess i'm not their target market. Now for a classic O/U with a bunch of engraving..........

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from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

We all must understand that Dave doesn't get enough griping and nagging at home. He obviously craves our loving attention as he constantly parades these expensive pieces of work by the cheapest buch of B@$t@rds on the world wide web! Dave we will continue to be here for you buddy but please toss in the ocassional Savage Axis, Mossberg ATR and Marlin X7 to keep our salivary glands in proper working order!

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from aferraro wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

True enough Dave- I haven't seen this gun in person. I live near a Cabela's and spend some time in their gun library, which has opened my eyes and my wallet to a whole new world. My thinking is that mass producers have found ways to achieve custom shop accuracy at a fraction of the cost. Today's $800 Remington will shoot with any custom rifle I've seen from 25 or 50 years ago (and probably match some of the custom guns produced today). To pay $8,000, I'd really have to love the gun and believe it would hold its value. That being said, a beautiful gun holds up a lot better than a beautiful girl and requires far less maintenance.

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from action1250 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Sorry, $7,000 for a rifle that doesn't kill any better than a $1,000 rifle?
Dead is dead. The game doesn't care how much the gun costs and when they all sit around the campfire they are still DRT!
Am sure Jarrett make a fine gun but just not for me!

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

A Savage Axis, Mossberg ATR and Marlin X7 ????

Beekeeper, wash out your mouth with Octagon Soap!

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from scratchgolf72 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

you guys can say all you want, "yea my 1000 dollar rifle does everything your 7000 dollar rifle does"....yea, but my rifle is custom and cost 7000 dollars. its more of a status thing i think....

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from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I must say the stock is real pretty, it looks just like the spray paint my wife puts on her plant pots, did Jarret do this to get the gun to appeal to women so they won't divorce their husband for blowing $8000.00 on a gun? If so he is a genius!

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

The trick is to make sure all your new rifles resemble ones you have owned for years. Lends credence to "Why Honey, this old thing?" Leave them laying out in plain view once in a while and complain about how hard it is to get that coper fouling out after years of shooting it. OPDEC at its finest, but never lie.

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from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

No, I don't have 8,000 dollars. So, I'll take your word for it.

I suppose it is worth it. If you have to ask, as they say...

On the other hand, there's that 1995 vintage, pre-Accu-Trigger Savage M112FLVSS in .25-06 that Jim Carmichael fired from a benchrest to a 1.577" group at 500 yards with Federal Premium 117 grain Sierra BTs, and you can see why there's a strong following for Savage and other "common people" rifles.

Plus there's always the "load development" qualifier on Jarrett rifles and ammunition, at least way back then. As Ross Seyfried used to ask back when he was still writing for Wolfe regarding load development, "what's wrong with the rifle (obviously he's not a Jarrett fan)?"

Of course, a lot could have changed between then and now.

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from breadfan wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Personally, I think it's a huge rip-off. I don't care how much money I make, I would never invest that much in a rifle. And it's just a medium priced rifle at that. Talk about your suckers! I have two very nice Weatherbys, a Mark V Carbine and a VGL carbine that weigh less and both shoot less than 3/4 groups. Both are beautiful guns. That custom BS is for the true SUCKER that has nothing better to do than throw his money away. I can get a BBL lapped, action fully bedded and stress relieved for under 250.00. mAnd still have enough money left over to buy a nice used truck. Kelvar stocks! Please, give me a break!

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

WAM,
Years ago Pat Mc Manus wrote a funny article about gun running. Put a shade and electric cord on that new rifle and sneak it into the house disguised as a lamp.

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from tmbryant wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Why the .300 Win Mag and not one of the current short beltless magnums? It's really pretty simple, if you go on a hunting trip with a .300 Win Mag and for some reason your ammuntion doesn't make it, you can go into any store in hunting country or probably anywhere else and pick up a box of .300 Win Mags. You may or may not be able to pick up a box of .300 WSM's. More than likely a rifle that is chambered for a .300 Win Mag will hold one more round in the magazine than one chambered for a WSM. The beltless magnums are about .020" larger in diameter at the base than the belted magnums are at the belt. This larger diameter can make it where you lose magazine capacity.

What do you get when you buy a Jarrett rifle that you don't get from a custom maker who builds rifles for considerably less money? You get guaranteed accuracy. A load is worked up for the rifle that will get the accuracy that Kenny guarantees. If the rifle won't do it, then another barrel is installed until the rifle will obtain the accuracy level that Kenny guarantees. It won't leave his shop until it delivers the accuracy that he guarantees. Every bit of this takes time and it costs money.

I'm a friend of Kenny and have been in his shop. I also build custom rifles in Texas. I don't have the time or the employees to offer the accuracy guarantee that Kenny offers. My rifles are also not priced the same as his. Either way you are paying for what you are getting. You go with a custom rifle maker like myself, the customer does the load work up and then if the accuracy level isn't what is expected, then the customer pays for any additional barrels that it takes to make it shoot or the barrel is replaced by the barrel maker provided that there wasn't a problem with the work done by the rifle maker. Either way, you get what you are buying. Lots of guys have more money than they have time. For those guys, going with a Jarrett rifle is the way to go. Kenny takes the uncertainty away and the owner doesn't have to take the time to work up a load for the rifle.

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from Jere Smith wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I am happy with my Remington products! But if I had more money than sense I might buy something like that.

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from huntingismylife99 wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Wow all i can say is that gun is sweet!For $7,000+ it must be a great tack driver, keep up the good work David!

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from RipperIII wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Unless things change radically, including the current administration, I'll probably never own a gun such as this,...but I sure do like to read about 'em.

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from Zermoid wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

If the current administration doesn't change soon you won't be allowed to own a gun. Period.

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from davidpetzal wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

To Del in KS: I was supposed to get a Vanguard II in .308 this April. When it never arrived, I sent a WTF e-mail to the person at Weatherby with whom I was dealing and never got an answer. I am baffled.

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from hengst wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Mighty fun rifle. honestly if I had the cash I would own one, heck with it. I could not fire one to test and return to sender...it would be like a one night stand with Megan Fox ...just a teasng memory

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from shane wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Just like you pay a higher and higher premium for increasing increments of performance with a car, you will for a rifle too.

You can get a car that goes 175 for under $200k. To get one that goes over 200 you pay double for that extra 25 mph.

You can get a half MOA rifle for $1000-2000. This thing will probably be well under. It's what Jarrett does. You pay accordingly.

When you get towards the top or are the one on top, you can charge more and more for that little bit you beat everyone else by.

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from O Garcia wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

That should have been M112FVSS. Jim is right handed, I think. Altho I remember 5 letters. I'll check my old OL's.

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from jay wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

At midlife, some guys buy corvettes, others buy $8,000 rifles.

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from Del in KS wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Dave, I hope that is not a bad omen. My rifle still is not here. The gunshop called UPS and raised hell. They said it would arrive tomorrow. Will believe it when I see it. The USPS has better service and better prices they just don't ship new guns.

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from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Del,
Your lucky it's coming UPS. They have a great tracking service, if it was Fed Ex I'd be worried.

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Del

You should have ponied up a couple more bucks and got that Mark V .300 Weatherby I told you about. My brother looked at it for me and said it was LNIB. You could have been shooting by now for $200 more $$$.

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from 99explorer wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

For that kind of money, I would expect a hand-checkered Circassian walnut stock custom-fitted to my dimensions.

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from shane wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Del, that might be all you're eating after purchasing this here rifle.

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from MJC wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Ahem... it's been days... bring on part 2!

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from Tim Platt wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

So next post we are all going to be astounded by the accuracy and claim it was worth 8 grand? It seems to me you tested a Vanguard Sub MOA that shot .177" groups. That gun is well under $1,000. I hope the Jarrett rifle is eight times as accurate.

I am with the crowd. For that much money I want a rifle that shoots AND looks like Michelangelo carved it.

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from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Dave is probably shooting hundreds of rounds through that gun so he can get one or two groups that will print in 3/4 of a inch then he'll tell us he shot them at 600 yards when he was really at 100. The only person who needs a gun that will shoot good at 800 yards is a military sniper or a hunter who can't get any closer because he just plain sstinks at hunting!

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from Jim in Mo wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I really should keep quiet but I never do. I think Kenny Jarret is full of himself and his products..

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

All the time I have spent tuning rifles and loads would be about equal to the money that I could have made doing paying work instead of fooling around with rifles and loads.

I think you hit the nail on the head when you say that a rifle like this is the surefire shortcut to accuracy.

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from BubbaK wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

I don't understand why people have to tear something down just because it's expensive. I mean, it's a beautiful piece of equipment, and if it shoots as well as Dave says, then just appreciate it. I'll never be able to afford a $250,000 Ferrari, or a million dollar Limborghini (sp?), but that doesn't mean that I can't appreciate it. Mind you, I wouldn't pay that much for a rifle myself, but I can appreciate the artistry and craftsmanship. It's market economics - if some sucker's willing to pay that much for it, then more power to him, and more power to the manufacturer who has to rely on selling only a few of these things each year to be able to pay his people, meet his bills, and keep his doors open. I can appreciate the Taj Mahal, but I'd never spend billions to build it - even if I had the money to do so. But I'm a Midwesterner, and that goes against everything we believe in lol...

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from WA Mtnhunter wrote 2 years 39 weeks ago

Some folks would complain if you hung 'em with a new rope, my Dad used to always say.

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from RES1956 wrote 2 years 38 weeks ago

I hope it shoots because it damn sure ain't a thing of beauty,,,,

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