“The Best Rifle I Have Ever Shot” – By Joseph Klan


Posted By : Jason McHann 7Comment

     "The Best Rifle I Have Ever Shot"  

By Joseph Klan



        My name is Joseph Klan and I own a Tikka T3 lite chambered in 30-06. I purchased this rifle two years ago for deer hunting in New York State. Not too many long range shots and thick brush does not warrant long barrels. I was at a local gun store and was checking every rifle that I could. All of the fancy high end rifles (with high end prices) didn't impress me. Loose actions, and bolts that felt like someone dumped sand in the breach. Then I checked a Sako and it felt wonderful. Weight and balance and the action was butter smooth. The trigger was perfect and precise.

        Then I saw the price and thought well in comparison to the other big name custom shop crap I thought if I could afford it I would buy that one. My friend behind the counter said try a Tikka, it’s a poor mans Sako. I said no way it’s as good. Well it felt exactly the same and I fell in love with it.


        Would you believe I had that salesman and a few others tell me that the barrel is to short or its nice but too lite and flimsy? Or why don't you get a model 700 like everyone else. Oh, you mean the one with the action that fires whenever it wants to? Or the one that weighs 3 more pounds and requires force to push the bolt forward? No way!!!

        I purchased it and mounted a plain Jane Nikon BDC 12 power scope. I shoot Barnes vortex 180 grain bullets (150 for whitetail). Since my purchase I have laid to rest and devoured 1 Arkansas whitetail at 109 yards, and it drove it into the ground, and two Wyoming elk. Last year just after my friend/guide was done breaking my stones about the size and caliber of my rifle I shot a 6×6 elk at 265 yards quartered away in a 20 knot cross wind and it hunched up like a cat and flipped forward. It was dead before it hit the ground. Needless to say my friend said how impressed he was with the rifle after that and I haven't heard him say a bad thing about it since.

        This year I was out in Wyoming again but had a cow tag and went out with another friend looking. We found two calves a CIA and a spike standing 496 yards away slightly downhill from us. I was on one ridge shooting across a ravine to another hill. My friend asked “how are you at 500 yard shots?" my answer was “I'll tell you in a minute”.

        I threw my backpack on the ground and utilized that old Marine Corps training (I served twice, once in desert storm in 91 and again in Iraq in 2003), breath control, sight alignment, sight picture, and shot. Now the cow was quartered towards me so my aim point was right on the shoulder and I sent a round down range and it hit low about three inches behind and about 4 inches low of my aim point. The elk hunched up and took two steps and stopped so I knew it was hurting. Trusting my set up and ability I sent another round down range, no hit? Another and again no hit? Now I'm upset because I don't like to miss and I don't want the animal to suffer. So I stop and reset and find that I was aiming high through my 400 yard ring. STUPID, STUPID, STUPID!!! So I told my buddy hang on, I screwed up, I got this now. He said OK but aim a little high just in case. (Never take advice from someone who doesn't know your ability or rifle). Well now that I have the correct aim point and some rejuvenated self-confidence, I settled in for the shot, exhaled and squeezed. I aimed for the top of her shoulder fired and what seemed like three seconds later it hit EXACTLY where I was aiming.


        She fell over like a manikin in a wind storm. Now I'm curious to find your opinion on a Tikka long range caliber that I can reach out even further. Like a 7mm or something flat shooting in that realm. Although I love my Barnes Vortex, I am open to your input on ammo as well. I will stand on a soap box and preach to anyone and everyone about my little 30-06 Tikka T3 lite.


Al Quast’s .284 Winchester Throws Down the Hammer!


Posted By : Jason McHann 4Comment
Al Quast's .284 Right Side

August 2013 Tikka of the Month

Al Quast, or YukonAl as he is known here at TikkaShooters.com, has been an integral member of the forum since its inception.  Al has provided thousands of Tikka Shooters words of wisdom from his vast library of shooting knowledge.  He is an accomplished marksman, winning matches with factory Tikka T3s.  Currently, his favorite competitive stick is the last, new Tikka T3 Super Varmint sold in America – chambered in .223 Remington. 

Early last year, Al told me he was working on a custom .284 built on a Tikka T3 action.  Seeing as this was the exact project I was wanting to build, I was all ears to learn what he was going to do. 

Through some strokes of luck, Al was able to acquire 5 Tikka T3 donor actions to build with to his heart’s content.

Al Quast The Project Begins

This action started its life as a .270 Winchester.  The long action caliber saved time since no modification of the bolt stop would be necessary to take advantage of the additional overall length the 284 would require for maximum performance.

Here is a shot of the completed barreled action ready to be bead blasted.  The trigger was adjusted to 1-1/2#.  Now the long wait for the McMillan – Sako Varmint Pattern Stock.

Al Quast - Barreled Action

As anyone who has ever built a new toy knows, the waiting is the hardest part.  But 4 weeks from this point, a package arrived and the finished product was put together.

Al Quast .284 Left Side

At this point Al just started to tease me with photos of the finished product, stories of how easy load development was, and of course proof of how accurate the rifle was.

Al Quast .284 Group

“Well, I've been fire-forming the first 100 WIN brass with 168 VLD's, and had 25 left-after I finished load work with the 168's. So I just threw some 5 shot loads together with the 180's (which I originally intended on using).

I have a match chamber, and when I sized, I sized to SAAMI specs-1.802" headspace (datum). All my fired cases are measuring 1.800" at the datum. So now I know why several cases damn near needed a hammer to close the bolt on, during fire forming. I didn't know if it was necks, or what. Well, at least I got all that crap done. Now I can size with .001" bump, and load 'em up and play. They'll all be concentric, and should shoot well…”

Judge for yourself but I think this rifle is a shooter.

Al Quast's .284 Hog

“Shot the .284 again at 400 yesterday on some life-size animal targets. Prone, in the snow, Harris bipod, no rear rest. 10 for 3" on the coyote, 10 for 1-1/2" on the deer. It's the real deal. I'm loving it! Now the fun starts…TX in Jan., maybe back down in Feb., or who knows where. Someplace else in March. But rest assured, it'll be bloody by spring.”

“I chrono'ed the 168's at 2800 fps.  The 180s go between 2600, and 2700 depending on powder selection”

Well, Al, now I need to catch up to you and screw my .284 together.  Thank you for sharing your project and knowledge with the TikkaShooters.com community.

Al Quast's .284 Right Side

Materials List:

Action – Tikka T3

Recoil Lug – Al's own lug design

Trigger – Stock tuned to 1-1/2#

Barrel – Kreiger 1 in 9 twist finished to 26”

Stock – McMillan A3

Brake – Vais

Rail – Talley

Rings – Night Force

Magazine – Standard Tikka Long Action

Brass – Winchester .284

Bullet – 168 and 180 Berger VLDs

Powder – H4831sc and V560

Primers – Federal 210M


As promised to all Tikka of the Month owners, Al will receive some Tikka Shooters swag from our grab bag.  If you have a great Tikka project or even just a Tikka story you would like to share, send your request to content@tikkashooters.com.  You and your gun could be immortalized in the digital annals!