Montana Rifleman



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  • Montana Rifleman

    I called Montana Rifle this morning and asked about a 450 Marlin in one of their bolt actions. I was told they have made a "about a half dozen or so" and can/will make a barreled action in S/S for about a $Grand. These are made on a 308 action and just have the bolt face opened and follower changed out with some rail work. They will make sure it feeds. To finish a rifle like this would take a good stock, McMillan or MPI, a nice non glare finnish, such as Black T or Cera-Kote, a good set of sights, scout rail and scope mounts and a barrel band swivel stud. And possibly a few other goodies. The stock and additional metal work would be done out of house and would require a good smithie. They will send out to be stocked, and they have a good stock man down the road. All this would be about $2,000 total. The will also make the 350 Rem Mag on this action or the 376 Steyr on the 30-06 action.

    I'll give Ruger a few more days to introduce their 450 Grizzly Scout rifle and then I'll build my own. I would gladly buy a Mk II with a 20 inch barrel in a stainless Ruger all-weather rifle in 450 Marlin. I'll probably replace the stock and definately coat the metal work with some black matte non glare finish. This Ruger deal will be about half the price of the Montana Custom and a great bargain.

    Maybe this should be part of the "Ruger build a 450" thread but what the heck. Good shootin'.

    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?

  • #2
    Montana Riflemen are the folks doing my 77/458 win mag project. I just talked to them today and its in the works. The one thing that did surprise me a little was that they don't do 458 cal in 1 in 20 twist. They will do 1 in 18 or 1 in 22. I went with the non fluted 20 inch barrel in 1 in 18 twist.

    I am gonna give Ruger a call on monday and see what there thoughts are on the subject. If they follow your recipe Murphy then I will commit to buying one. Heck I'll but it in whatever configuration they come up with then change it to suit me. However if they won't deliver then I will go with plan "B" as well. I picked up a couple of the Charles Daly short (308) actions when Jerry's Sports first offered them. They were $200 a piece. I think I will use one of them to do a 450 marlin on. I was kind of thinking of going with a peep in the rear and a heavy post in the front. I have an advantage being only 12 miles from Brownells as I can run down there and the techs are more than happy to get involved trying different things!


    • #3
      Montana rifle in 450 Marlin

      Originally posted by Murphy
      I called Montana Rifle this morning and asked about a 450 Marlin in one of their bolt actions. I was told they have made a "about a half dozen or so" and can/will make a barreled action in S/S for about a $Grand.

      Maybe this should be part of the "Ruger build a 450" thread but what the heck. Good shootin'.

      Is this the Montana 1999 action from Kalispell MT? If so, I wish I had known about this. They have on their site that actions are back-ordered, and this short supply has been the case for some time. I didn't know that they had barreled actions.

      Even if there is a short wait until they have actions available again, I believe it would be worth the wait. This is a very good alternative to the Ruger rebarrel custom rifle. In reality the cost of a Ruger action with a custom barrel is going to be close to $1,000 or more. Then there may be some extra work to lap the lugs, and feed ramp work, and generally something has to be done about the Ruger factory trigger. Besides, the fact is with the Ruger it is best to start with just the correct action - to minimize the modifications needed for the 450 conversion. I do not believe it would be prudent to start with a Ruger short action set up for the 308 class of cartridge. The best action for the custom is one which left the Ruger plant as a 350 RM or perhaps one of the short mags. There are just not too many of us who are willing to pull a perfectly good 350 RM Ruger factory barrel, and spend over $400 to have it replaced with a new barrel in 450 Marlin. It's a little different for me because I have a 35 Whelan on a Mauser action, so I really have no need for the 350 RM. I just ran across a good deal and traded a couple of scopes for the Ruger, knowing at the time that I just wanted the action because of its uniqueness.

      If Ruger offered their rifle from the factory in 450 Marlin - well that's a different story, which is yet to be available.

      The good thing about the Montana '99 is the barreled action should be 100% ready to go - good trigger, feeding and everything. I like their safety and bolt release better, compared to the Ruger. The Montana action is heavier, but that probably doesn't matter too much for the 450.

      I'll be thinking about this one, because I could just put the 350 RM barrel back on the Ruger and sell it, then apply the money toward the Montana '99. That's a tough decision, because I am rather sure that either choice will not be a wrong decision. That's the way we like our dilemmas - Ruger or Montana '99 - no wrong choice. I wish other things in life worked this way more often.

      Good shootin,
      Last edited by Kabluewy; 07-01-2006, 12:02.


      • #4
        Montana Actions


        Yes one and the same and they did tell me there was a wait, but I don't know how much seems 10-12 weeks. They have three actions...Belted mag of H&H length, WSM which is 308 length but tuned for the WSM family with a good follower and rails to feed well and then the standard 30-06 length. The 450 would be on the 308/WSM action and modified bolt face, follower and rails to feed the 450 correctly. He said it will feed before it leaves. I also asked about the 376 at another time and he said they have made a few and they are kinda tricky to get to feed, but will feed well when they leave the facility. I believe they are made on the 30-06 length action. I think the demand is greater for the WSM and the belted H&H action than any other.

        I have a WSM action over at Gary Junk's place waiting on more parts to be made into a rifle. This one will be a special ramblin' rifle. And, when he's done with that one, there will be another behind it and it will be made on a Montana action.

        My Montana Grizzly Scout will be in 450 Marlin and have a 21 inch barrel of 1 in 18 twist. It will have a quarter rib/scout mount and square post front with XS ghost ring rear mounted on the rear receiver bridge. Most likely a steel weaver type base with sight and weaver type front base, likely these will be the Warne maxima bases with a set of rings or Leupold QWR bases and rings, for conventional receiver scope mount option. The quarter rib will have a flip up rear sight also. It will have a barrel band front swivel stud and hammer head type sling swivel mounts in the forend and in front of the magazine box as well as in the butt stock for conventional or scout mount sling. The stock is MPI and will be bedded full length, receiver and barrel for added strength and stability for rugged use. All metal components will be of stainless steel and coated with Arctic Gubworks Cera-Kote in O.D. Green, which will match the O.D. green finished stock. A most corrosion resistant rifle.

        It will fire 350 grain JSP bullets at 2350 fps and 450 grain hard cast at 2150 fps. Scopes will be the 2X scout and a 1.5-5X20 Leupolds. This entire package will be about $3000 and it will be professional grade. It is designed for rugged use in the harshest of climate and terrain where the utmost in reliability and up close brute force will be needed. Effective range from zero to 250 yards. A real git-er-done kind of rifle. Whaddu ya think of that? Good shootin'.

        Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?


        • #5
          Here is a NIB SS SA RH Montana 1999 if you want one. 308/WSM confifuration.


          • #6
            Murph sounds like a fine rifle! O.D. at that. Gonna be a handsome peice. Give us a pic when you get her done. Got to tell ya I am leaning toward a 40 bore and over just mulling once again as to what. A well placed shot in close is something to behold especially when you have something of a "brutal" beastie like that taking charge.

            good shooting


            • #7
              450 Marlin / Montana '99 action

              Murphy, I really like it. You have given this some thought. I like the 21Ē idea, and noticed that Montana doesnít offer 20Ē twist. I donít know what to think of the Scout rifle, since I have no experience with that style. With my rifle, I havenít thought everything through yet. I like the barrel band idea for the sling stud up front. I have planned to use one of my 1-4x Leupold shotgun scopes with the thick cross hairs.

              I also like the XS square post front. They also make a ghost ring especially for the Ruger Ė called a backup I think, and itís easily detached. I have some sights taken off an Encore 45-70 barrel and the sights are the fiber optic type. My gunsmith says that he thinks he can adapt them to the Pac-Nor barrel. If I use the Encore sights, then with QD rings, I can take the scope off and on, and not have to worry about the sights since they will already be in place. Iím a little concerned about the durability of the Encore sights. Thatís a decision Iíll make later.

              For some time, I have been thinking of trying one of those red dot scopes of low power, like one of the Aimpoint scopes. They arenít cheap, but over the years I have tried to make and use rifles with iron sights, and so far all attempts have failed for me. Somehow, I am never satisfied with the sights, they break, hang up on stuff, rust, or do something to annoy me, so I just go with a low power scope, and be done with it. This is after spending lots of money too. I have maybe three rifles that started with some sort of iron sights, and they all have scopes on them now, and I removed the sights, with no plans to put them back on. Somehow, the thought sticks in my mind that Iíll be wasting my money again if I try the iron sights. But, what the heck, Iím gonna do it anyway. I think it would be a shame to make a bush whacker like this and not at least try to become comfortable with iron sights. Heck, with this rifle Ė Ruger receiver Ė I could try open sights for a while, then shoot it with the 1-4 Leupold, then try the red dot scope too. The receiver is a natural for QD rings anyway.

              I am certainly open to suggestions.

              I havenít made up my mind about the stock either. I have been thinking of just getting a Hogue with the full aluminum bedding block, for simplicity, and strength, but frankly I think that stock is rather ugly, although very utilitarian. I doubt it would give any trouble.

              I donít know anything about Arctic Gunworks Cera-Kote, and I would like to know more Ė such as how to contact them. Do they have a web site? I have used the Black T coating, done somewhere in Mississippi. The last one I did seemed to be less in quality, compared to the one done several years ago. I may have to send the last one back for a better coating. I would like to have an alternative.

              I hope this rifle doesnít take too long, but if it goes as normal, Iíll be lucky to be shooting it next year.

              Good luck on your project.


              • #8
                Montana 450


                Here is the web site for Gary know with a name like that, he's got to be good! The Cera-Kote is not listed on his site, it is very new. It is essentially the same as the Arctic Kote except has mico fine ceramic in it and makes the finish more durable. I think the Cera-Kote comes in black, grey or green, all very flat, subdued color.

                You're right about the Ruger, an XS backup rear aperature for when the scope comes off. Standard Ruger rings are easy off but Talley's RTZ better. I like the scout but want conventional scope for some games, so I would retain that capability. Ruger could put the No. 1 quarter rib on the M77 and have both scout or receiver mounting and we could keep the fold down rear sight. Not very durable but at least twice as good as nothing.
                Good project, good luck with it.



                Is that action for sale? Is it made to fit and feed the WSM or 308 class?
                If ya want to part with it, I'm interested. Thanks.

                Good shootin'.

                Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?


                • #9
                  I took a couple 350 rem mag rounds and stuck them in the Charles Daly magazine just to get some sort of idea what a 450 marlin would look like in the magazine. Well, it looks like trouble waiting for a place to happen. The feed rails would have to be altered to make it work and probably the feed ramp as well. I have messed with enough feeding problems to know that a pet project can become a pain in the butt if the feeding problems occure. Knowing that up front....I think I'll save the Daly actions for something else...338 Federal?

                  I guess for now I am gonna wait on Ruger to do their thing with the 450!


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