March 21, 2023

Building a chassis rifle for your kids

Building a kids chassis rifle.

Building a chassis rifle for your kids.

Quality kids hunting rifles are few and far between. Most of the time, they feature components that do not fit youth shooters properly. Although kids can overcome these fitment issues, it can result in bad habits being developed in their shooting fundamentals.

Chassis rifles are the best solution to these fitment issues. Depending on their age, kids can require a short length of pull, so our TR-2 is the perfect buttstock for the young ones. In the standard configuration, the TR-2 buttstock goes all the way down to a 12-inch length of pull. With the short buffer tube, you can run the buttstock down to a 10.5-inch length of pull. At 10.5", the buttstock is short enough to work for almost any kid that is old enough to shoot a big game rifle.

Length of pull for kids rifles.

The best part about the TR-2 is the length of pull can also be extended out for adults to shoot the rifle. So once your young ones grow up, the rifle will still fit them perfectly. We have all seen the kids rifle that sits in the back of the safe to collect dust, but that is no longer an issue.

Rifle weight for custom kids rifle.

The TR-2 is a little heavier than our carbon buttstock, but you can still build a lightweight rifle with its features. An Element 4.0 Magnesium, carbon grip, and TR-2 buttstock hits the scales at 41 oz! When you drop a Bergara or Tikka T3 barreled action into the chassis, you will have a light enough to carry but very shootable rifle.

Recoil pads for youth chassis rifles.

The TR-2 features a LimbSaver recoil pad. Not only is this pad thick and squishy, but it also features LimbSaver's Air Tech technology. "LimbSaver's AirTech line features atmospheric chambers that produce a substantial increase in performance through uniform energy dissipation, and it incorporates anti-muzzle jump technology for faster target re-acquisition. The recoil pad enables you to shoot longer without discomfort and bruising, while also helping to increase accuracy of follow-up shots and provide improved control for maximum stability."

Adjustable buttstock for kids rifles.

The TR-2 buttstock is an excellent all-around buttstock, but the adjustability shines when youth shooters need a rifle that fits them perfectly. Kids all around the country are already utilizing these buttstocks, and they will be through their adult years. Don't make your kids grow into their rifles, get one that fits from the start.

Custom Youth Chassis Rifles for Hunting

January 12, 2023

The Rise of the PRC rifle cartridge

XLR Chassis Rifle Chambered in 300 PRC

New precision rifle cartridges always make shooters scratch their heads and the rise of the PRC rifle cartridge is no different. Is it worth buying a new rifle? What benefit does this new caliber bring to the table? Can I find ammo for the new cartridge? Is there going to be high-quality ammo? Will this caliber stick around? These are all valid questions you should ask yourself before pulling the trigger on a new rifle.

Taking the hunting and shooting industry by storm.

In the last few years, we have witnessed the uproar in the PRC cartridges from Hornady. The 6.5 PRC and 300 PRC have proven to be outstanding cartridges for hunting and long-range shooting. With the recent release of the 7mm PRC, it is shaping up to be another market competitor. But what sets these apart from calibers that have been around for years?

Maximizing case capacity in PRC cartridges.

Each of the PRC calibers brings similar attributes to cartridges that have been around for years. 6.5 PRC vs 6.5 Saum, 300 PRC vs 300 Win Mag, and 7mm PRC vs 7mm Rem mag. Although the case designs are similar, Hornady has tailored the cartridges to favor the heavy-for-caliber bullets that have recently been introduced.

With the development of these new bullets, Hornady has been forced to design new cartridges that maximize case capacity without being too long to fit in magazines.

"Couldn't they make 300 win mag ammo with bigger bullets?"

This was a question on Rokslide the other day, and it was a good one! Yes, making a 225-grain 300 WM ammunition SKU is possible, but the SAMMI spec cartridge overall length is 3.403" for 300 win mags. To make the overall length that short, the 215+ grain bullets would protrude deeply into the case affecting the case capacity. 300 PRC on the other hand, has a Sammi spec Cartridge overall length of 3.575. By setting the length that long, they know that Tikkas will not be capable of being chambered in 300 PRC, but they can focus on the utmost performance out of Remington and Savage rifles.

The New 7MM PRC.

7mm PRC is another caliber that Hornady changed the cartridge length to optimize different actions. Instead of considering the longer action length, they wanted to focus on shorter actions like Tikkas, Thompson center, and even the medium Remington footprint actions (see medium action article here).

On the 7mm PRC, they have set the Sammi spec length to 3.090". By shortening the case but still giving the cartridge .234" freebore, factory ammo producers can seat heavy 7mm bullets further out giving the caliber more case capacity. This optimized case capacity will result in higher velocities than other similar-length cartridges.

PRC cartridge market and longevity.

As we can see from the numbers, the PRC lineup brings new designs to the table that combine cartridge and bullet lengths to fit the action lengths. Some shooters may not believe that the PRC lineup will stick around, but with the advancements listed above, these cartridges will be viable options for years to come!

Hopefully, in the coming years, we will see more factory ammunition on the shelf so all customers can find the value in the PRC lineup.

December 12, 2022

C-6 Buttstock Install + Adjustments

XLR Industries C-6 Buttstock Install and Adjustments

XLR is super excited to inform you our C-6 buttstock is now in stock and available for stand-alone purchase. This buttstock takes the XLR chassis to the next level with toolless adjustability and new features that have not been available on previous XLR buttstocks. The toolless adjustability allows you to adjust your Length of pull, cheek piece height, and recoil pad height all on the fly! This allows shooters to get a precision fitment out of your rifle no matter the weather.

In the morning have your length of pull shortened while you are wearing your puffy jacket. Once it heats up, simply loosen the thumbscrew and extend your length of pull out keeping the rifle to shooter interface exactly the same! We have also added new adjustments like cheek rest cast.

XLR C-6 Adjustable Buttstock W/Toolless Design

This allows shooters to get a straighter sight alignment and creates a more repeatable position from shot to shot. Cheek rest cast has been seen in custom stocks in the past but never before seen on a chassis rifle. You can now appreciate even quicker adjustments and better fitment with the C-6 buttstock!

The C-6 buttstock has a stand alone weight of 24 oz. Although this is a little more than the carbon buttstock, the precision fitment is worth it for hunts that do not require the lightest gear possible. This is also a great way to have the rifle fit shooters with a smaller body build. We offer the C-6 with two different length of pull adapters which creates 4 different length of pull options.

  • Short fixed- 12-13 inches.
  • Short folding- 13.5-14.5.
  • Long fixed- 13.5-14.5.
  • Long Folding- 15-16 inches.

With all of these options you can fit the rifle to anyone in the family with ease! The C6 buttstock takes your XLR chassis to the next level and we are very excited to see them getting banged around this hunting season. If you have any questions let us know. 

View Install Video on YouTube  and  DONT FORGET TO SUBSCRIBE!

C-6 Adjustable Buttstock on XLR Hunting Chassis

November 18, 2022

XLR Hunter DBM Installation

XLR Hunter Trigger Guard Installation

The XLR Hunter DBM is the next step in providing consumers the best hunting platform available! As chassis become more popular in the hunting market, we have been faced with the struggle of tactical DBM latches. Although these latches were great for shooting off the bench or at a PRS match, they were not the best option in the field. After every thick patch of brush you had to reach back and make sure your magazine was still in your rifle. We realized there had to be a better solution so after some testing the hunter DBM was born!

The XLR Hunter DBM includes a low profile magazine latch. This will make sure your magazine only comes out when you want it to! We have also incorporated the adjustable DBM, which allows shooters to fine tune their magazine latch height! Both of these features result in more consistent feeding, less magazine rattle, and a snag resistant DBM latch.

Not only are the Hunter DBM trigger guards included on all new Element 4.0 orders, but we also offer a stand-alone trigger guard for previously bought XLR Element 3.0 and 4.0 chassis. Installing the new trigger guard is very easy and only takes a couple of minutes! Visit the link below for an installation video on the hunter DBM and DON'T FORGET TO SUBSCRIBE!

View XLR Hunter DBM Install on YouTube

October 05, 2022

Choosing the Correct Ammo

Black Hills Ammunition

Since the release of the 6.5 Creedmoor, Hornady Match has been the gold standard for factory ammunition. If you are an owner of a 6.5 Creedmoor, it is likely that you have either shot the Hornady Match 140 or the 147 ELDM. This hunting season appears to have brought in a new competitor to town that is showing to be an excellent option for factory ammunition!

Black Hills Gold 143 grain ELDX and 130-grain Dual Performance have both proven to be very comparable in performance to the Hornady 147 ELDM. This is the first time I have shot any Black Hills ammo and I was impressed with the numbers produced. For two days I shot two different five-shot groups and two additional five-shot strings over the chronograph. These tests were also performed with the Hornady Match 147 ELDM because it provided a good baseline to compare the different ammunitions.

The 143 ELD X is a popular hunting bullet for this caliber because of its excellent expansion throughout a wide range of velocities. The heat shield tip allows the bullet to achieve best-in-class BC that carries energy to further distances. At lower velocities, the heat shield will drive into the bullet to initiate expansion. This allows the bullet to perform in any situation you face in the field making it a fantastic bullet for ethically harvesting animals at extended distances.

The 130 Grain Dual Performance is a new bullet for me. Although I have researched copper solids extensively, I have never tested them. This 130 Grain bullet is CNC machined and is designed to penetrate through the thickest skin and expand to create a massive wound cavity (hence the name dual performance). Since the bullets are all one piece, they retain a claimed 80-90% of bullet weight once expanded on impact. The copper solids are an excellent choice for shooting larger animals like elk, moose, or mountain goats.

Which ammo is right for you?

A good place to start when choosing your ammunition is to consider what animals you are hunting and the effective range that you will engage them.  This will give you a window for the energy requirements for that animal.  Animals like Deer or Antelope require less energy than elk or moose, so choose the bullet based on what the required energy would be at your comfortable shooting range. You can find energy requirement suggestions for different animals in your state wildlife hunting guide. You can use common ballistic apps to find at what ranges the energy thresholds occur. The chart below shows the maximum distance I could shoot the Black Hills ammunition based on the energy requirements for elk (1500 ft-lbs.).

Once I find a bullet that will perform well at my required distance and suits the animal I am hunting, I will confirm that my rifle has the correct twist rate. Manufacturers will list the minimum twist rate for a particular bullet.  It is important to be at that twist rate or faster to properly stabilize the bullet. For example, the 147 ELDM recommends a minimum twist of 1:8. In that case, you will want to be shooting a rifle with a 1:8 or faster, say 1:7.5. Over twisting a bullet slightly will still allows it to perform well, whereas under twisting might not stabilize the bullet properly.

I like to check all the above information before even searching for ammunition. This way, you do not waste any time or money on ammunition that will not work for you or your rifle. In most cases, you can find both the velocity and required twist rate on the manufacturer's website.  If for some reason it is not listed, you can search the Internet and find a relatively close velocity and required twist rate.

The next and perhaps more fun step is to shoot the ammunition to ensure its performance before your hunt. You are not only shooting for groups but also to check your velocity variables. I pay more attention to my ES (extreme spread) than SD (standard deviation) when checking velocity because I like to ensure that even the rounds outside the norm will be on target. An ES of 20 will have 2 inches of elevation difference at 500 yards.  It is important to note that the elevation differential deviates exponentially as you extend your distance.

Once I find the ammunition that fits all of these needs, my final confirmation is to shoot the round at distance. This proves that the bullet I have chosen is flying stable and holding a good group down range. This is also a great time to true your data if needed (reference our data trueing article here). When you are shooting at distance, you should be shooting at paper or freshly painted steel to see your impact so you can properly verify the required accuracy of the bullet.

At times it may seem like a daunting task to choose new ammunition for your rifle; however, these steps will simplify the process for you by outlining the steps you should consider. Do not be afraid to try new options in your rifle because you might find a pleasant surprise. Black Hills Gold has proven to be a fantastic option for me this hunting season so I will continue to test their other caliber options! If you ever have any questions about choosing ammunition feel free to reach out to info@xlrindustries.com or give us a call at 970-241-1807.

Jaden Miller

XLR Industries

August 18, 2022

Win number 35 For Jake Vibbert

Jake Vibbert

About Professional Shooter Jake Vibbert

Jake Vibbert is one of those names that continues to sit at the top of the Precision Rifles Series. Jake has been shooting Precision Rifles series competitions since 2013. Since then, he has won 35 National matches, which makes him one of the most decorated shooters in the sport. One of his most significant accomplishments was winning the inaugural AG Cup in 2019, walking away with a $20,000 check! Not only is Jake a shooter, but his company JC Steel also sponsors dozens of matches around the country!

Training for PRS Matches with Jake Vibbert

Jake takes a slow and methodical approach to his shooting. I have heard numerous shooters say, "I could have sworn he wasn't going to have enough time," but he always finishes. Jake has created an online shooting course (available here) that is great for not only the beginning shooter, but even a seasoned veteran can pick up on a few tricks of the trade. In this course, he goes through gear, positions, strategizing, and wind reading tips. He always likes to preach his moto BTF (breath, trigger control, follow through). This approach to every shot continues to place him at the top of matches year after year.

Jakes Rifle & Competition Gear

Jake has seen a vast amount of gear throughout the years and helped develop many tools that drive the precision rifle industry. Jake has shot competitively for XLR since 2014 and has been an immense help in product development for the constantly evolving precision rifle competitions. The Envy design and all its iterations have been heavily due to Jake and his involvement in positional shooting, and when the Envy Pro came out, there was a lot of focus on the forend and weight accessories.

Because of this, we offer the JV Competition Kit named after Jake. This accessory kit comes with everything Jake and many national shooters use. Jake's product feedback was not only seen by XLR, but Benchmark barrels and US Optics also designed products around Jake's thoughts. You can take note of the VCC Contour (Vibbert competition contour) from benchmark barrels along with the JVCR Reticle offered in the USO Foundation 25x. These are both products that you will see at almost every PRS match!

Jake's product feedback was not only seen by XLR, but Benchmark barrels and US Optics also designed products around Jake's thoughts. 

Although this match marks national win number 35, it is far more than that for XLR. Jakes commitment to helping the shooting community every day is what really makes us honored to have him as part of the XLR Family.

July 19, 2022

XLR Side stage Hornady Precision Hunter Challenge

XLR Side stage Hornady Precision Hunter Challenge

XLR Side stage Hornady Precision Hunter Challenge

With the rise in NRL Hunter matches this year, XLR Industries wanted to do our part in growing the sport! We recently attended the Hornady Precision Hunter Challenge in Price, Utah to run a side stage and hang out with the #XLRfamily. It was great to see a lot of familiar faces along with meet some new shooters who are running our products! Now most shooters here are also hunters so we wanted to open their eyes to the Precision Rimfire side of competitions.

We teamed up with Vudoo Gunworks and Lapua to prove the capabilities of these precision rimfire rifles! The rifle consisted of an XLR Envy pro with the new C6 buttstock, a Vudoo Gunworks V22 barreled action, and the new Vortex Gen 3 Razor with the EBR 7D reticle. Brandt built concepts also jumped in to show off their new ocular mounted cant indicator. This is a new upgrade on the Long-Range Arms send it level that really brings the product to a whole new level!

Hornady Precision Hunter Match

There were a lot of great competitors at the match and XLR shooters left with a lot of hardware! Kevin Wilkey brought home 1st place factory with the Bergara MG Lite, Mike Anderson got 2nd in open light with the Magnesium Element, and Greg Herbert got 3rd in open heavy with his Envy Pro. It is great to see the different products being used to meet the weight requirements in the NRL Hunter matches!

Good job to all the shooters and we look forward to seeing everyone at future matches!


July 14, 2022

Tools For Hunting Western Big Game

Rifle gear for hunting out west.

Tools for hunting elk, deer and other big game out west.

Hunting out west, a rather broad term including the possibility of sheep, mountain goats, elk, pronghorn, deer, and bears. All these big game species offer a different type of hunt, with vastly different terrain and elevation, which often calls for specific shooting equipment. Sheep and goat hunts are greatly different than elk, deer, and bear. Then you have pronghorn and plains deer on the opposite end of the spectrum. Not to mention the black hills of South Dakota and badlands of western Montana are vastly different terrain than the high Rockies in central Colorado or desert to its west.

Since backcountry elk and mule deer hunts seem to be on every hunter's bucket list. We thought we would help you by outlining the shooting tools you will need to maximize your accuracy and efficiency so you can focus on the daunting tasks of researching sleep gear, food, packs, and especially E-scouting. That way you'll have more success once you have spotted your target animal!

Personally, most of my gear doesn't change from hunt to hunt. Hunting gear can be spendy, so I like to utilize everything I have invested in for as many big game hunts as possible. Sometimes this means having a little heavier pack than others, but I do not mind the weight. If you are here to shave as many ounces as possible, you might cringe at a few of these gear choices, but once at the top of the mountain you will reap the benefits!

Tools for rifle hunting out west.

  • Range Finding Binoculars
  • Kestrel
  • Shooting Tripod
  • Rifle Scope
  • Backcountry Rifle Tools

Hunting gear for backpack elk hunt.

Range finding binoculars, never leave home without them.

My Vortex Fury 5000s never get left at the house. Optical technology has advanced vastly over the last few years, with better features offered in budget friendlier optics. Range finding binoculars are something I've grown accustomed to, and I'm not sure there is any going back now.

You hear others talk about needing Swaros or Leicas to ensure you aren't straining your eyes, but I haven't run into any of those issues with the Vortex Fury's. I wear glasses and the eye relief on the Fury's are very accommodating making it so I don't have to push the glasses into my face to get a full field of view.

My Fury's are the pre applied ballistics model, which I would like to upgrade at some point. Having a ballistics solver at the click of a button would come in handy during stressful situations.

Get an accurate wind and weather reading with a Kestrel.

My Kestrel 5700, another tool that I take with me everywhere. Getting a ballistic solution is slower than having them built into your binoculars, but the Kestrel gives you the ability to read the wind. This is essential in the mountains where the winds change throughout the day.

I would rather spend the extra 5 or 10 seconds and know that I have an accurate wind reading than the check and guess method and end up wounding an animal. People always argue that you don't need to know what the wind is doing at the target (which is correct), but I would rather have a good starting point and then take some observations than just rely 100% on feel.

Tripods offer stability anywhere and when it counts.

Another important tool is a good shooting tripod. This is one of the most important parts of the package because a good tripod allows you to pick apart country with your binos. You can then you can attach your spotting scope and confirm that it is the trophy that you are after. Then, swap out your spotter for your rifle and have a rock-solid shooting platform.

I personally run a Two Vets Recon with a RRS BH-55 ball head. This tripod has large enough legs to give you a solid shooting platform, with a super smooth ball-head for scanning while glassing. Make sure when you order a tripod head, you have all the correct adapters for your binos, spotter and rifle. ARCA rails have many different variations, so I recommend converting everything to a 1.5 inch RRS Dovetail spec which is the spec most of the shooting community is following!

Durable rifle scopes.

One of the most discussed tools is your rifle scope. In my opinion, a shooters #1 goal here is to find a durable scope that will hold zero. I have seen everything from rifles hitting scopes and trees, to me losing my footing and falling on my rifle. A scope that holds zero is only going to increase your confidence in the field when the time comes to take the shot.

At this moment, I am running a Nightforce ATACR and have put it through the paces. These rifle scopes have a strong reputation for being one of the most durable scopes on the market.

Don't forget, a good scope is useless without good rings. Hawkins is a perfect balance point for durability and weight. If weight is not a factor, a Spuhr one piece scope mount is built like a tank. Those are the two I would stick to but there are a lot of other ring manufacturers out there.

Backcountry rifle tools for rifle adjustments.

Hunting out west is going to test your gear. Traveling bumpy roads, bouncing rifles in packs, and hitting rifles off rocks and trees can allow screws to come loose. It is a must to have proper tools to get you back up and running so you are not coming off the mountain.

This is one area that is hard to pick and choose what to bring! If you are in rough terrain or hiking deep into the backcountry, you want to cut as much weight as possible. At the same time though this makes you want to prevent having to go back to the truck for something as silly as a scope ring screw.

A good middle ground for me is the Fix it sticks All In One Torque Driver Kit in my pack paired with the long range Fix It Sticks kit as a backup in the truck. The torque driver kit is small and compact and has all the tools you should need to tighten anything on your rifle. If you are using a good chassis, rings, and base you should be able to minimize any POI shift if anything comes loose. From the testing I have done, I am confident that I could take my entire rifle apart, put it back together, and still be within ½ moa of my zero.

You must be very particular about torque specs when you are originally putting your rifle together so you can replicate that torque when you are on the mountain.

Go hunt!

While there are other things one could think to bring, this walk through of the rifle gear is what I recommend to any hunters when they come out west. Some of the ultralight backcountry hunters might cringe at some of the listed equipment, but that's because they are cutting as many ounces as possible.

To me, it is more important to have reliable gear that can take a beating, rather than lighter gear that is prone to breaking. I am not afraid to carry another 5-10 lbs if I know nothing is going down on top of the mountain.

Hopefully this helps you a little bit on what you are planning to take on your next hunt out west. If you ever have questions about the tools or equipment I use, feel free to reach out to us at 970-241-1807 or info@xlrindustries.com.

- Jaden Miller

XLR Industries

June 23, 2022

Precision Rifle Timers

Precision Rifle Timer for Competition Shooting

Precision Rifle Timers for Competition Shooters

We have all been there, you ask the RO for time and all that you hear is crickets…. Or if you are on the other side of the table, a shooter asks you for the time and as soon as you look down, they shoot. You do not want to be on either side of the table, but it happens at every precision rifle match! The XLR timer mount is the solution to both issues! You can easily press the start button when you start the stage and glance down when you want to know your remaining time!

The timer mount easily attaches to the thumb rest provisions on the side that you are not using. This allows you to simply hold your rifle in the air, wrap your thumb around, and start the timer. It is an easy and convenient way to make sure you are on time to finish all your shots! This timer mount has saved me a few times in the last few matches!

View XLR Timer Mount Specs

June 10, 2022

Bergara B14 Upgrade

Bergara B14 Rimfire Chassis Rifle Upgrade

Upgrading your Bergara B14 rimfire chassis.

With the surge of NRL 22 matches taking place around the nation, the Bergara B14R has been a hot topic. The Bergara B14R is a great “bang for the buck rifle” to get into the sport, but it will not hold you back as you progress your shooting skills. The rifles come with a factory stock that has an adjustable LOP, and adjustable cheek piece which makes it a great stock for getting started. Once you progress and want to upgrade the rifle, that is where Bergara shines! The actions are a Remington 700 clone, so they work with Remington 700 Chassis and triggers. This is a huge benefit to make sure you can use all the popular precision rifle equipment.

View Bergara B14 Rifle 

Bergara B14 Rimfire Chassis

Although the factory stocks are great for starting out in NRL/PRS 22, there are some upgrades that really help as you become more competitive! I started out by upgrading from the factory stock to the XLR Envy Pro Chassis. The biggest reason for the upgrade was the full length arca, enlarged mag well, and the adjustable DBM. All these features really helped make sure my rifle performed consistently from match to match and did not have any issues.

View ENVY PRO Chassis

TriggerTech Diamond for Bergara B14

The next upgrade that I felt was necessary was the trigger. The Bergara triggers are one of the best factory triggers I have felt! With that being said, it was hard for me to transition between it and my TriggerTech diamond on my centerfire rifle. That was the only reason for the change, and I do not think it is a do or die upgrade, but I like to keep everything the same!

View TriggerTech Diamond

L3I 14 round Bergara Magazine

Another nice addition that I found was the L3I 14 round Bergara Magazine. This was a great way to reduce the amount of mag changes that were needed in a match. Most of the 22X matches seem to have a lot of 12 and 14 round stages so a 14 round mag only made sense! This mag has worked very well so far, and I have not had any issues with feeding!

View B14 Magazine

Once all these upgrades were complete, I was into the rifle around $2250. While I would not call this a budget rifle, it is far cheaper than some other options on the market and performs very well! I currently have 3 of them set up all the same way and they all shoot under ¾ moa at 100 yards when paired with quality ammo.

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