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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Bradford County, PA.
Re: 20 Practical build
My action is also a centerfeed, so they feed reliably as long as I'm not too gentle about it. Closing the bolt too slow will usually cause the tip of the bullet to catch on the edge of the chamber. The barrel is a 24", varmint contour, Shilen SSM.
I nearly built a 20br instead of the Practical. The ballistics of the 55gr Berger being pushed at the speeds the 20br is capable of is rather impressive. I'm pushing the velocity (and pressure) envelope for the 20P, with 50 grain bullets @ 3450 fps. I was shooting the 40 grain Berger's prior, at 3600 and change, but the 50's group better.
If I were to build another one I think I'd lean towards a walking varminter and keep the rifle weight, with optics, to below nine pounds. I'd also be inclined to go the route you're going and launch the lighter bullets. The selection of sub 40 grain bullets is much better than the 40 plus.