Quick and Easy Gun Upgrade: By Scott Mayer
Maybe money was tight at some time and you bought a cheap, plastic-stocked rifle only to find that it shoots great but you’re embarrassed by how cheap it looks. Maybe you dropped thousands on a gun with really great wood, but it looks so good that you’re afraid to take it out and risk scratching. Maybe you have “Grandpa’s” gun and you don’t want to risk damaging it. If any of those sounds like you, then you’re a candidate for a quality, good-looking “everyday” stock that you have confidence in and are proud of.
I recently came across just that type of quick and easy stock solution from Boyd’s Gunstocks and you don’t have to send your gun off for work or even be handy with tools to have a great looking stock. You just need to know the make and model.
In 2014, Boyd’s kicked off an ambitious new custom stocking service that may be the fastest in the market without compromising any on quality. With it, you can have a custom stock in a week—that’s fast—so I recently ordered one to see how the quality stood up.
The rifle I chose is a G.33/40 Mauser, generically referred to as a 98 Mauser, that I had rebarrelled to .257 Roberts for my son. As far as rifles go, it’s hard to think of one more common than a 98 Mauser. But there are so many variants that ordering a replacement stock is a tall order so I was expecting the stock to require some hand fitting.
As I write this, a Boyd’s basic walnut replacement stock for a 98 Mauser costs $114. I wanted some extras to see how well custom features could be executed in a week, so I added a custom length-of-pull (13 inches), black grip cap and fore-end tip, and fleur-de-lis checkering, all of which added another $130 to the total cost.
The stock arrived within a week and looked great. The fore-end tip, grip cap and butt pad are perfectly executed and the laser-cut checkering is completely flawless as one would expect from this high-tech checkering process. An unexpected nicety is that the front sling swivel stud is attached using a locking nut so it will never get loose. No hand-fitting was needed, as the barreled action dropped right in. Wood-to-metal fit was as good as on any factory wood-stocked rifle. Assembled, the rifle shoots two-inch groups at 100 yards. I’ll be bedding the rifle soon, and that will likely shrink group size some. Until then, my boy has a very functional sort-of custom deer rifle that looks great without costing a fortune.
In 2008, Mayer returned to the editorial side of publishing, this time in the digital field, as Editorial Director for Guns & Ammo, Shooting Times, Handguns and Rifleshooter online magazines. After a brief stint in 2011 as the Digital Media Director for an ABC TV affiliate, Mayer returned to the outdoors industry and Safari Club International where he is currently Assistant Publisher and Multi-Media Communications Editor.