Howa Mini Action__Replacement Stocks?

user

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Hello,

Have a great little 223 Howa Mini. But the stock is crap. Other than the MDT/Brownells, does anyone make a decent stock for this rifle? Can a gunsmith inlet Manners etc. on a custom basis?

Thanks!
 

user

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Hard to find stocks and triggers for these actions!
 
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flatland1

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I sent McMillan one of my Howa Mini bbl'd actions a couple of years ago so they could model the inlet for this action. I got a Sako Varmint stock back from them in fairly decent time, and aside from the fact that I have a tough time with this stock shape in prone, it's a decent stock. I ordered a Game Scout from them for the Mini 14 months ago, and it finally came in about 10 days ago, after numerous calls to see what the problem was. I feel it's going to be an improvement over the Sako Varmint when it comes to prone shooting.

Sold one of three Minis in 6.5 Grendel that I'd bought to Tom Manners in hopes that he'd be able to do one of his EH2 stocks for it, but last time I spoke with them, I guess they've decided to back away from doing inlets for this little action.

Boyds does inlets for the Mini - I bought one of their ProVarmint models with their adjustable cheekpiece, and feel that it's a good solution. I never got around to shooting that 6.5 Grendel before selling it, but for the money, it's one of the best deals around if you're more into conventional stocks. The one I ordered was nicely finished in their mountain camo pattern, and was an attractive stock. I may buy another of these stocks from them - the wait was very reasonable, as was the price. The only downside IMHO is that the stock finish is pretty slick - some shooters might decide to apply some sort of roughened epoxy or something similar to aid in hanging onto these stocks. Their textured black finish would probably be a whole lot more practical in that respect - I'd seen their satin urethane finish, and thought it was much more attractive, just didn't realize how slick it would be compared to the textured finish.
 

SquarePizza

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I went with a boyds tacticool for my mini, its ok but heavier than I would have liked for such a small rifle.
 

mcfred

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its ok but heavier than I would have liked for such a small rifle.
It's wood right? Go to town with one of these:



Seems that the 'tacticool/provarmint' Boyds don't really fit the Mini all that well anyway at least not within the last 11 months:



The cheap/flimsy floorplate (doesn't seem right calling it a bottom metal) would probably crack if installed in the example I've seen as it came from the factory. It was not plug-and-play, so chop, mod, glue and screw until it works.
 

SquarePizza

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Wow, mine fit great right out of the box, it did not have any inletting issues at all.
 

flatland1

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The Boyds ProVarmint I bought for one of my Minis in 6.5 Grendel hvy bbl was an excellent fit for that bbl'd action. Didn't have to do anything to the action area or bbl channel.
 
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flatland1

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Mine had the satin urethane varnish finish instead of the textured black - doubt that would make any difference in the quality of the inlet, but thought I'd mention it. The stock was ordered & received about 8mo ago IIRC - how does that fit into the time frame when you had to do the work to get yours to fit?
 

mcfred

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Late April 2017 was the above example of the plastic mag holder not being milled correctly. The top half was fine. It didn't really matter as it got cut up and bedded in a way that the action screws were not crushing the plastic mag holder with any reasonable amount of torque. With an added brake the Mini and the heavy Boyds really make it a pussycat to shoot.
 

glock24

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Anyone know if the Boyd's walnut wood stocks are lighter than the laminates? I would assume so, but can't confirm. I see they don't offer the adjustable comb with the walnut stock. Perhaps due to the lighter density?

I agree the Boyd's option is great for the Howa mini, but the laminate structure makes it heavy . . .
 

flatland1

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Yeah, when I first spoke with Tom Manners about getting one of his stocks for my 1st Mini, he asked that I sell him a bbl action so he'd have something to model in inlet off of. So I did, but they later decided the demand for Mini stocks had died down enough so that they didn't feel it was worth devoting the resources to coming up with one. At the time, I don't believe Boyds had started doing stocks for the Mini, and I hadn't been able to get McMillan to do it without first paying them $500 for a custom inlet. I believe it was about six months later that I called McM again, and they'd changed their tune, saying that they'd had quite a few requests to do stocks for the Mini, and would be willing to do one for me if I'd send a bbl'd action to them. So, I shipped them one in 222 Rem, and true to their word, they got a stock in Sako Varmint pattern out in about 6mo, maybe less. I ordered another stock before receiving that one in their Game Scout pattern, so they kept the bbl'd action until finishing that one. Not sure what happened that time, as it was nearly a year & several phone calls later before they tracked the Game Scout down, got it finished, and sent it & my bbl'd action out. Now I've been hearing that they're not wanting to do any more stocks for the Mini - and am wondering what's up with that? Last couple of times I've spoken with anyone at Manners, they're saying they still don't have any plans to do stocks for the Mini, which is a real disappointment to me.

There have been teaser photos over on the 6.5 Grendel forums about a new, longer magazine for the Mini, something that would make full use of the length of the action. Now that photo has been removed, and it's starting to sound like it won't happen after all. Have to wonder if this is part of the reason for both Manners & McM being reluctant to commit to doing Mini stocks? Wonder what it's like to deal with LSI on a corporate level, and if that has anything to do with a reluctance to do stocks for the Mini action? I keep looking for B&C to offer something, but don't know what to say there.
 

mcfred

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Anyone know if the Boyd's walnut wood stocks are lighter than the laminates? I would assume so, but can't confirm. I see they don't offer the adjustable comb with the walnut stock. Perhaps due to the lighter density?
Some random search on "American Walnut Density" yields 0.59. A birch laminate panel remnant I have in my garage yields 0.753 density. A Boyds ProVarmint inletted for a Remington Model 700 with HV countour and PTG "Stealth" DBM weighs 2.955 lbs on my kitchen scale. A walnut plank with a 0.59 density will drop the same Boyds ProVarmint to about 2.31 lbs. There're some SWAGs in there but a phone call to Boyds might yield a closer approximation. If you want it even lighter there's a LOT of material that could be hogged out, especially with an inlet for a Howa Mini.

If you want an adjustable cheek piece there are plenty of stockworkers that would be happy to install one if Boyds will not.
 
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glock24

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Nice density calcs! I hope you didn't spend too much time weighing that laminate birch remant, but it is much appreciated.

Thank you
 

mcfred

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It's effin' cold outside with a foot of fresh snow over everything. It was a 5 minute distraction from shoveling and was happy for it. ;)
 
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Banango

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What I want to know is does the oryx and howa chassis require you to use specialized mini action magazines or will it work with standard aics mags for the respective caliber?
 

D2junky

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I went mini Grendel crazy on the Brownells sale. The heavy barrel went into an MDT/Brownells the 20” sporter in a McMillan with DIP bottom metal. Still have a a 22” sporter weight that needs a stock.

Didn’t know they would do a Game scout on a mini....might have to order one up. The Sako classic is VERY handy. I love the MDT but it’s like holding an ice cube on a stand in the winter and why I likely won’t go oryx
 

flatland1

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Here's a photo of my two Minis - 6 RAT in the Game Scout, 20 Tactical in the ProVarmint. The RAT has a 24" Bartlein in light Palma profile. The 20 Tactical is a 24" Bartlein #2B 1-9tw. I used DIP DBM on both, did the RAT in McM tan, and have done the 20 Tac in sniper gray since the photo was taken.
 

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D2junky

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I bought my minis for donors for a 6 and a 22 Grendel but they are shooting so well I doubt it happens any time soon.

REALLY like that game scout. Glad I haven’t ordered another Sako classic.

How heavy is the ProVarmint?
 

flatland1

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The 20 Tac in the ProVarmint weighs 10.75lbs, the 6 RAT in the Game Scout is 10lbs even. Not a good comparison on the actual stock weights, as the RAT's bbl in considerably heavier than that of the 20 Tac. They both have Ares BTR scopes in TPS TSR aluminum rings now, so the weight difference is all due to bbl & stock weights. I'd guess the light Palma on the RAT weighs 1/2lb more than the #2B on the 20 TAC, which would mean that the ProVarmint stock weighs at least a pound more than the Game Scout.

I've got two more Mini bbl'd actions in 6.5 G & 7.62x39. The 22 Grendel reamer arrived in the mail a week or so ago. Still waiting on a go gauge for it, and the Krieger #4 sporter blank is probably a few months out. I've considered keeping the remaining 6.5 G as is, and using the 7.62x39 for the 22 Grendel, but that 6.5 is a light sporter version, and I'd prefer to have a slightly heavier bbl for it if it's going to remain a 6.5 G. However, I do have a Bartlein 6.5 bbl in Rem Magnum sporter contour. If I do that, I'd have to buy another reamer & go gauge...but it would probably be worth it.
 

D2junky

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The hornady black 6.5 shoots so well in all of mine I kind of enjoy having a few guns with a steady supply of ammo ready to go. Have a horrible tendency to not have something loaded when I need it.
 

SterlingCross

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Feb 21, 2018
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What I want to know is does the oryx and howa chassis require you to use specialized mini action magazines or will it work with standard aics mags for the respective caliber?
The ORYX for the Howa Mini in 6.5 Grendel requires that we use the factory magazine. Although I appreciate MDT for introducing this chassis as an option, the lack of any magazines more than 5 rounds minimizes the use of this barreled action for any PRS or similar events which is unfortunate since the 6.5 Grendel is very capable in this arena.
 

mdthanatos

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Feb 20, 2019
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I recently got one of the Mini Actions in .223 and have been looking at replacing the stock and called Howa about ordering just one of their chassis. I was quoted $519 and it is something they will have to piece it together as the catalog has changed for 2019. I will be looking at either Boyds or Oryx for a replacement.
 
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BurnOut

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I went with a Boyd's Pro Varmint for one of my Howa mini actions; I had to open up the barrel channel (which is fair, considering that I had it fitted with a Heavy Palma) and lightly touch up the rear tang area. A little JB Weld for bedding, and Bob's your uncle.

I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out:

7038108
 

user

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I recently got one of the Mini Actions in .223 and have been looking at replacing the stock and called Howa about ordering just one of their chassis. I was quoted $519 and it is something they will have to piece it together as the catalog has changed for 2019. I will be looking at either Boyds or Oryx for a replacement.
Im selling a complete like new factory HOWA take off Chassis built, with a XLR stock, for $475shipped in con us. Its in the equipment exchange...
 
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glock24

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At first I hated the rearward design, but now that I understand the point of raising the height of the stock to be closer inline with the optic, I can appreciate the thought behind the design.

Still looks kinda fugly, but so do I, so I really don't care.

By the look of it, I'm assuming an A1 or A2 fixed stock would be WAY too long, but anything collapsible would be fine.
 

Wannabustbunnies

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Jun 20, 2019
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This is my .204 in the B&C stock with DIP Inc bottom metal. I haven't got around to shooting it yet but it feels a whole lot stiffer than the standard stock. The forend is a nice width, similar to my Target/Competition B&C.received_904486519909232.jpegreceived_335900880628938.jpeg
 

flatland1

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The last Mini that I re-barreled went into a B&C stock just like the one above. I put a Bartlein 6.5mm/1-8tw bbl in Rem mag sporter contour on mine, chambered it with a PTG 6.5 Grendel reamer, and finished at 24". I used the same DIP DBM, skim bedded it into the B&C stock, and CeraKoted the bbl'd action/scope rail/DBM in sniper gray. Mine's the same brown color as Wannabustbunnies' stock; I like the contrast & combination of B&C's brown stock and sniper gray, but had considered going with patriot brown, and now wonder how that combination would've looked.

Whatever - I like the shape of the B&C #1003 stock. I like the tight radius of the pistol grip, the comb height is just right to get my head up for near-perfect alignment with an Athlon Midas TAC 6-24x50 scope in TPS TSR low rings on an EGW 20 MOA scope rail, and the forearm is just wide enough for the flat bottom to be steady on a front rest, provide a solid base for a Harris bipod, yet is still narrow enough to be comfortable in offhand. My all-time favorite stock for the Mini is a McMillan Game Scout, which I have on the first Mini I built, in 6RAT with a Bartlein light Palma bbl finished at 24". I've also got Mini rifles in Boyds ProVarmint & Prairie Hunter stocks. The ProVarmint has an adjustable cheekpiece; it's very comfortable in prone, while the Prairie Hunter isn't, and has a much more open pistol grip radius. The Hunter is comfortable for standing offhand, but I've shot with McMillan A5 & Manners T4A stocks for so many years that I much prefer a near-vertical pistol grip. Stock shape/proportions are a very personal thing, so what really trips my trigger may seem downright uncomfortable to someone else. I do appreciate being able to call B&C and have a stock in a couple of days - as opposed to waiting a year to get the McMillan Game Scout, which I guess was the result of some confusion in the order. 2nd photo, from the top: 6RAT in Game Scout, 22 Grendel in Boyds Prairie Hunter, 20 Tactial in Boyds ProVarmint. All have DIP DBM.
 

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