By Mark V. Lonsdale
This project began with a little research into what the top F-TR shooters were using, and who better to ask than Derek Rodgers, current World Champion and US Team member, and Kelly McMillan, owner of McMillan Fiberglass Stocks and US Team sponsor/supporter.
Kelly McMillan and Derek Rodgers with F-TR rifle complete with McMillan XiT stock
For an action. the options were Kelbly’s F-class Panda action, Borden or Barnard. Since I was very impressed with the Atlas Tactical action that Ian and Ryan Kelbly had barreled for one of my sniper rifles, I went with their Panda action. For a barrel, the options were Krieger or Bartlein Heavy Palma profile loaded into a McMillan XiT stock. Since the planned load will include Berger 200 grain Hybrids or 200.20X, the twist would be 1:10″
Since I was already building a new sniper rifle on a Bartlein barrel, I decided to go with a Krieger Heavy Palma 1:10 on this project. Fortunately there was one on Krieger’s Direct webpage that was available for immediate purchase so I had them ship it directly to Kelbly’s Inc in Ohio.
Barreled action built on a Kelbly’s F-Class Panda action with integral 20 MOA Rail
Closeup of the Panda bolt face
Kelbly’s was able to chamber the barrel and barrel the action in less than four weeks, so now it is off to McMillan Fiberglass Stocks for a little XiT magic. This will include a custom molded color scheme, a 3-way adjustable butt-plate, adjustable cheek rest, inletting, aluminum pillar bedding, and an Anschutz fore-end rail to accommodate a Phoenix Precision FTR bi-pod.
McMillan Fiberglass Stocks’ XiT competition stock purpose built for F-TR and used by members of the gold medal winning US Team and World Champions
US Team Rifle built on a Panda action and McMillan XiT stock topped with Nightforce optics
As of this writing, the barreled action is in Arizona having the stock fitted, so will follow up with a blog when the completed rifle comes back and I begin load development and range testing. Stay tuned to Tactical Rifle Shooters on this blog or facebook for updates.