Blaser R8 for Dangerous Game

Manny R

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I forgot to mention I am a Lefty so the choices are extremely limited. I was hoping to purchase just the wood receiver & forearm up to a Grade 5 for around $4,000.00. There is an oxymoron "German Engineering" and price reasonably. Nothing is priced reasonable now when it comes to guns an ammo.
My wife is not into hunting but when I go on my hunting trips she goes and visits my daughter in La Jolla,Ca for a week at the Spa. She knows how to pencil whip me when it comes to my hunting trips....lol
 

Tanks

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You may need to define your idea of "reasonable price", because when it comes to timber stocks...IMO they are anything but reasonable. From the looks of it, prices for the stock alone start at $4K for grade 4.

In my mind the terms "German engineering" and "reasonably priced" are mutually exclusive. But I also feel that you get what you pay for so maybe they are not mutually exclusive.

Keep in mind, I feel your pain. My wife's rifle is wood stocked and absolutely beautiful because that is what she wanted. Was it inexpensive? I really didn't pay attention because once she saw it, it was over and we were not leaving without it. Be very careful looking a pretty timber stocks.

Custom wood stocks are expensive all around though. The Turkish and Bastogne walnut stocks on my B&M rifles were $4K+ To make.

I looked at a custom stock for my sporting clay gun. Started at $6K so didn’t do it.
 

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I forgot to mention I am a Lefty so the choices are extremely limited. I was hoping to purchase just the wood receiver & forearm up to a Grade 5 for around $4,000.00. There is an oxymoron "German Engineering" and price reasonably. Nothing is priced reasonable now when it comes to guns an ammo.
My wife is not into hunting but when I go on my hunting trips she goes and visits my daughter in La Jolla,Ca for a week at the Spa. She knows how to pencil whip me when it comes to my hunting trips....lol
So a LH grade 4 (or above) timber stock for a Sauer 404...for a "reasonable" price.

I suppose you have hen's teeth, a unicorn and magic beans you will be trading for this piece of wood.
 

bowjijohn

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This might interest a few on here

Found this - looks interesting - Company is Akela (based in Slovenia)


Akila.jpg



Akila and blaser.jpg


Appears to be an action (that fits an R8) with picatinny rail (comes in standard, 20 MOA and 30 MOA)

Allows the fitting of any hunting or match barrel, or indeed any twist rate and length not currently supported by Blaser.

Also a picatinny scope mount straight onto the rail

Akila 1.jpg



Akila 2.jpg



I've no interest in this other than an 'interest in this as a Blaser user'

This is what they sent me by way of an explanation - it also was a response to my question as to whether they produce barrels too

Hi John,

Thanks for your interest in AKILA products and reaching out to us.

Currently we are working to provide a ready solution based on our barrel extensions and European barrel blanks.

At the same time it's more or less standard gunsmithing job to fit a custom barrel blank to our barrel extension.

Please see attached a drawing that you can give to a gunsmith with the exact size and design of the barrel breach.

There are two ways to fix a custom barrel in AKILA BEAR8 (Barrel Extension) with the provided jam nut or without.

Using the jam nut would allow you to fine tune the head space to specific bolt head without having to rim the chamber.

The second way is a more conservative but also can be done by a skilled gunsmith without any issues.


Akila 3.jpg


Akila 5.jpg
 
Last edited:

Philip Glass

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It also depends on circumstances :)

The .375 H&H rapier is great in orderly duels with clean deadly shots (spot & stalk), but not so great when things turn nasty and the focus shifts from killing to stopping, at which time the .45+ broadsword can become a lifesaver, just like the rapier never made it to the battlefield where cuirassiers wielded relatively heavy sabers.

Sure, as a client D'Artagnan you will have at least one PH musketeer to provide assistance, so you can adopt the perspective that YOU do not need the broadsword, although HE is most likely to bring one to the brawl...

Interestingly, there is ample evidence that the .416 occupies a somewhat ambivalent place: amply proven more powerful than needed for surgical killing, and also amply proven less powerful than desired for blunt stopping. I too had one when the mythical .416 Rigby was revived affordably by CZ, but I did not buy a .416 barrel when I transitioned to the R8...

I am sort of in-between. My largest barrel on the R8 is a .375 H&H (the rapier), but I love hunting the big stuff up close and personal with the double .470 (the broadsword) although I readily admit that I so prefer more for romantic than purely practical reasons. Oh well...

I was lucky to pick up a trophy bull elephant cancellation hunt in Zim this coming August at a price I can finally afford (dare I say Thank You COVID?), and I will have both rapier and broadsword. I will carry the .470 K gun with 500 gr persuasion in the thick jess around the irascible Zambesi Ladies, but one tracker will carry the scoped .375 R8 in case a dream 60 pounder walks across a wide clearing and requires 350 gr surgical attention...
I’ll be doing a similar hunt with the same rifles next year in Zim.
 

Philip Glass

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Well in a few days I'll have the R8 Jaeger in hand. It's a 2014 model that is unfired. It comes with a 23" fluted Semiweight barrel, and has the safari style stock with the pancake cheekpiece. I hope it shoots as well as it looks!

View attachment 394388
You will love it!
 

Philip Glass

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Philip Glass

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My semi-weight 375 H&H is not fluted TOBY, so I cannot give you a factual answer :cry:

If you asked me to guess, I would say that a pretty educated guess is that the fluting takes about 4 ounces off the barrel weight, therefore I would think that a fluted semi-weight .375 H&H barrel is very likely around 3 lbs. 8 oz.

See here under verified weights (except for the 25.6" .416 22 mm barrel - NOT the 23.6 Selous .416 22 mm barrel). You can configure at will your DG R8 :)

View attachment 391976

Note that you can reduce the rifle weight by selecting a Leupold VX-6HD 1-6X24 instead of a Euro 1-6x24 scope. This will typically shave 3 oz.

I am assuming that by "semi-weight receiver" you mean an alloy receiver with a barrel channel that accommodates a semi weight barrel, right? FYI, my semi weight .375 H&H measures 21.5 mm at the end of the fore-end, and 19 mm at the muzzle. I do not know what the Selous barrel measures at the end of the fore-end, but it could be (?) that a semi weight barrel tappers outside of the stock from 21.5 to 19 mm, while a Selous barrel does not tapper and stays at 22 mm from fore-end to muzzle. Maybe BeeMaa can check that for us?

What I know is that a semi weight barrel fills up very nicely the barrel channel designed for the Selous barrels on the steel receiver stock:

View attachment 391970

Note: observe upon close examination that the widening of the stock channel to "safari/Selous" barrel contour is obviously done by Blaser by hand, as there were numerous tool marks inside the channel and the widening is not strictly geometrically regular. I have verified with other steel receiver owners, who have observed the same thing, our own BeeMaa being one of them...

This is only visible up close, and is fixed by polishing with fine grit sand paper, but I would have expected better from Blaser. I am reasonably sure that I would have done a cleaner job with sand paper wrapped around a wood dowel, and if I needed an alloy receiver stock with large barrel channel, I would not spend $300 additional to buy a so-so job from Blaser but I would buy the standard stock and I would enlarge the barrel channel myself...

Based on the above table, a .375 H&H semi-weight fluted barrel .375 on a alloy receiver stock, without kickstop installed, and with a Leupold scope will likely weigh in at 9.5 lbs.:

View attachment 391978

The same configuration with a .416 barrel will likely be about 3 oz. lighter because the bore hole is larger. This would give you a scoped & "slinged" .416 Rem around 9 lbs. 5 oz. Take the sling off, and you have an even 9 lbs.....

If a 9 lbs. .416 Rem is too heavy for you, you are much more man than I am when it comes to shooting it :E Rofl:

Admittedly, my Mauser 66 .458 Lott is 8 lbs. 13 oz., but I will be the first to say that it is distinctly unpleasant to shoot and I never dared put a scope on it :eek:

By comparison, a .375 H&H standard barrel .375 on a alloy receiver stock, without kickstop installed, and with a Leupold scope has a verified weight of:

View attachment 391979
Thanks for the info on the weights. I am wishing my R8 Professional Success Leather was lighter. I just got a .300Win Mag standard barrel, cut it to 22”, threaded it for my Thunderbeast Ultra 5 suppressor. This tiny little suppressor is amazing on sound and especially recoil. This is my set up for the EC safari in July.
Does anyone know how to determine whether a receiver is steel or alloy? I assume mine is steel.
This has me interested in going back and weighing everything again.
 

Philip Glass

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Hello all, looking through the pictures I have noticed that it seems most of you prefer to have an R8 without thumbhole stock. Is this just a personal (aesthetic) preference or is there more reasoning behind it for a dangerous game rifle?

If this was already discussed or answered, no worries I'll wade through the thread.

thanks, V.
I have the pro success in stingray leather and really like it.


The thumb hole stock keeps some of the recoil off your shoulder and for me my wrist is much more comfortable.
The fun is that Blaser give you so many choices in the R8!
 

mark-hunter

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Does anyone know how to determine whether a receiver is steel or alloy?
I presume, by alloy, you mean aluminium based alloy?
So, far, for my guns and ammo (with mild steel jackets), my method of testing for steel was ordinary magnet. if it sticks, it is steel.
 

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This might interest a few on here

Found this - looks interesting - Company is Akela (based in Slovenia)


View attachment 397933


View attachment 397936

Appears to be an action (that fits an R8) with picatinny rail (comes in standard, 20 MOA and 30 MOA)

Allows the fitting of any hunting or match barrel, or indeed any twist rate and length not currently supported by Blaser.

Also a picatinny scope mount straight onto the rail

View attachment 397934


View attachment 397935


I've no interest in this other than an 'interest in this as a Blaser user'

This is what they sent me by way of an explanation - it also was a response to my question as to whether they produce barrels too

Hi John,

Thanks for your interest in AKILA products and reaching out to us.

Currently we are working to provide a ready solution based on our barrel extensions and European barrel blanks.

At the same time it's more or less standard gunsmithing job to fit a custom barrel blank to our barrel extension.

Please see attached a drawing that you can give to a gunsmith with the exact size and design of the barrel breach.

There are two ways to fix a custom barrel in AKILA BEAR8 (Barrel Extension) with the provided jam nut or without.

Using the jam nut would allow you to fine tune the head space to specific bolt head without having to rim the chamber.

The second way is a more conservative but also can be done by a skilled gunsmith without any issues.


View attachment 397937

View attachment 397938
I don't get the advantage of this at all. It defeats the purpose (and one of the huge R8 attributes) of having pre-sighted rifle scope combinations ready to switch out without re-sighting during a hunt.
 

bowjijohn

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Further investigation have revealed that it is not recommended for magnum calibres

I think I understand what the manufacturer is trying to achieve

As far as I'm aware there are no barrel manufacturers that make Blaser style barrels in the EU other than (of course) Blaser itself.

This allows any quality custom barrel to be retro-fitted to an R8. Presumably the user can then opt for twist rate and barrel length etc of his choosing rather than just those of Blaser

A 20 or 30 MOA picatinny rail could make the R8 suitable for PRS or ELR without having to resort to an additional Blaser or Contessa rail mount - however the height saving from centre of scope to centre of barrel can't be that significant can it?

I think it is clever, it is imaginative but I too am not sure what real world advantages it offers
 

Opposite Pole

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Does anyone know how to determine whether a receiver is a steel or alloy? I assume mine is steel.
This has me interested in going back and weighing everything again.

“Standard issue” Blaser R8 is alloy, the large calibres (416 and up) are steel.

The information I received from Blaser is that steel is used for weight, not strength. This makes sense since the bolt locks directly into the barrel and thus bears the entire load.
 

Opposite Pole

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Ed Lally

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I just finished reading the last 1/3 of this thread. Common to most who don't have, never shot or don't want an R8 is "it is overpriced" or "it is too expensive". What they did not add is "for my wallet." or "for the value I perceive." Hell, McLarens are overpriced. Audi R8s are overpriced. My Ford 350 diesel was overpriced. Even Ammo is over priced. People are still buying them so some must believe that they are receiving sufficient value for their money. If you believe something is overpriced, don't buy it. Don't try to denigrate my choice by spouting unfounded criticism based on ignorance. My dad always said "You can succeed by pulling yourself up or you can cut others down." Some commenters here seem to believe that the second course of action is appropriate. It NEVER is.
 

Tra3

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This might interest a few on here

Found this - looks interesting - Company is Akela (based in Slovenia)


View attachment 397933


View attachment 397936

Appears to be an action (that fits an R8) with picatinny rail (comes in standard, 20 MOA and 30 MOA)

Allows the fitting of any hunting or match barrel, or indeed any twist rate and length not currently supported by Blaser.

Also a picatinny scope mount straight onto the rail

View attachment 397934


View attachment 397935


I've no interest in this other than an 'interest in this as a Blaser user'

This is what they sent me by way of an explanation - it also was a response to my question as to whether they produce barrels too

Hi John,

Thanks for your interest in AKILA products and reaching out to us.

Currently we are working to provide a ready solution based on our barrel extensions and European barrel blanks.

At the same time it's more or less standard gunsmithing job to fit a custom barrel blank to our barrel extension.

Please see attached a drawing that you can give to a gunsmith with the exact size and design of the barrel breach.

There are two ways to fix a custom barrel in AKILA BEAR8 (Barrel Extension) with the provided jam nut or without.

Using the jam nut would allow you to fine tune the head space to specific bolt head without having to rim the chamber.

The second way is a more conservative but also can be done by a skilled gunsmith without any issues.


View attachment 397937

View attachment 397938
This is a curious adaptation. I get the idea of setting up a specialized barrel to make a long range competition gun out of a Blazer. That would be fun, but probably getting close to the same price as just buying a entry level rifle dedicated to precision rifle shooting.

For hunting it doesn’t make much sense to me. The ease of removing a Blazer scope mount would be lacking.
 

dchamp

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Now that I have recently booked a Elephant/Hippo/Cape Buffalo hunt in Zimbabwe, I have 16 months to decide on what rifle I will use. Is the 375 enough? Or do I move up to 416 ?

.416 Just my opinion. Of course with the Blaser you can add the .500 Jeffery.
 
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Tra3

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Now that I have recently booked a Elephant/Hippo/Cape Buffalo hunt in Zimbabwe, I have 16 months to decide on what rifle I will use. Is the 375 enough? Or do I move up to 416 ?
That is exciting! In that amount of time you’ll have ample time to practice with both. Then when you wake up in the morning you can select the barrel that you feel most comfortable with.
 

dchamp

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@TOBY458 might I recommend Toni Sandchez-Arino's book Elephants, Ivory & Hunters. It's a good read and informative book, published by Safari Press. I think it is only available on Amazon Kindle at the moment.

IMG_1982.jpg
 
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