The rifle I’m covering in this week’s column is purely a target gun, and though I’m not one hundred percent certain about its provenance, it seems to be a Jarrett rifle. South Carolina’s Kenny Jarrett is best known for beanfield rifles—accurate, flat-shooting bolt actions made for hunting deer over harvested soybean fields. He got his start and learned about accuracy as a benchrest competitor, then applied what he knew to deer rifles starting in the late 1970s.
John’s 6mm PPC
Here is my late father’s 6mm PPC, which I fondly refer to as the “Green Machine.” I believe everyone should own at least one ugly rifle during their life, and this one is mine. I showed pictures of it to my old high school classmates at my reunion in South Carolina last weekend. Show some pictures of a gun like this (an ugly, old, bench-rest rifle built to solely cut paper) to a bunch of good ol’ boys who are at least four beers deep into the cup, and here are the supportive comments you get:
“Does it shoot boogers?”
“At least you don’t have to worry about anyone stealing it.”
“Seriously, what the hell do you do with that?”
“That rifle would make a blind man cry.”
The Green Machine is most likely one of Kenny Jarrett’s early concoctions. I could be wrong; the rifle isn’t well marked. I know Allan Hall of Alabama made the action, but he doesn’t lay claim to the rest of the gun (I’ve asked).
Mr. Hall was, and still is, a precision machinist and benchrest shooting expert, and he manufactures some of the finest hardware in the country for that purpose. There was certainly a time when the Green Machine’s bolt action was worth more than my 13 year-old car.
During the late 1970s, Mr. Hall regularly competed against Kenny Jarrett. They were often positioned next to one another during matches and became friends. Both men set benchrest records before Jarrett decided to bring his gun-making expertise into the realm of big-game rifles. My father was disabled about the time word of Kenny’s hunting rifles started to gain traction in South Carolina, and I suspect he asked Kenny to build him something he might be able to use.
Regardless, before my military career ends, I plan to work-up a load for the Green Machine and compete with it. I know it can shoot; I just do. My parents had a 1979 Mercury Cougar the same color as the rifle. A buddy told me I should go find it in the junkyard and shoot it with the gun!
I’ll conclude by addressing a few words from Mr. Petzal’s recent post about the 6mm PPC entitled The World’s Most Accurate Cartridge. “If someone told me to go out and print the smallest groups I possibly could, I’d see where I could borrow a 6mm PPC.”
Well, you are more than welcome to borrow mine, but I hope you are ready to endure the harassment that might come your way.
The Blast from the Past inbox is running low. Keep the gun pictures coming to email@example.com.