USA – -(AmmoLand.com)- Sometimes when you're a firearm collector (or more accurately, an accumulator) you pick up a piece or two that come along as part of the deal. For me it was a Remington Model 597 Ducks Unlimited rifle in 22 lr.
I have plenty of rimfire rifles, but this one was part of a package deal that was too good to pass up.
Back in 2011, Remington Arms partnered with Ducks Unlimited, the world's largest non-profit organization dedicated to conserving waterfowl habitats, on a variety of special edition long guns.
Remington Model 597 Rifle + Boyds Gunstocks
One of these was the Remington Model 597 semi-auto rifle. Considered by some to be the most advanced semiautomatic rimfire rifle ever built, the Model 597's reliability is only rivaled by its shot-to-shot accuracy. It has a smooth, crisp trigger, with a receiver both grooved for standard rimfire mounts as well as drilled and tapped for standard Weaver mounts. This edition has a 16.5″ heavy barrel and a Ducks Unlimited medallion embedded in the synthetic stock reflects the Remington and Ducks Unlimited partnership.
The end result was an attractive little rifle with a gray stock, a rimfire scope and I was into it for less than the cost of a mediocre pocket knife. There was only one problem.
I do not like most synthetic stocks.
Sure, they are great in all kinds of weather and they are light in weight, but my preferences run along the lines of wood and fiberglass, not typical polymers. I had shot the Remington 597 and found it to be fun and accurate, but something I might give to one of my grandkids to encourage their shooting hobbies.
So, I put a call into Boyds Gunstocks to see if they had anything for this particular model and sure enough, they did..
I was glad I called for two reasons.
- The first reason being that they just rolled out a new model based on their At-One design, with a thumb hole stock. I have a love/hate relationship with these types of stocks. In some cases, I find them to be more comfortable than traditional stocks, particularly on a rimfire rifle. Other times they can completely throw off ergonomics. In this case the ergos were more than fine.
- Secondly, Boyds was experimenting with some new finishes for their laminated stocks. These were more radical “paint schemes” than was par for the course at Boyds and since this rifle was going to a young shooter, I took this approach and went with their pattern called Spectrum.
Boyds At-One Thumbhole Stock
Just like the rest of their stocks, the Boyds At-One Thumbhole Stock is built from laminated hardwood that is dried to exacting specifications. They are hard maple veneers if you want to get specific. This ensures rigidity and stability for the rifle and the sealant used on the wood is weather resistant as well as chemical resistant.
Yet the At-One Thumbhole series is completely adjustable. The shooter can quickly and easily adjust the length of pull or the height of the cheek piece within seconds. This is important if you are running an optic on your rifle, decide to shoot from a different position or even wear a heavier coat while shooting or hunting. Or in this case, transitioning from an adult shooter to a young shooter.
The thunb hole stock fits the hand well and has a very positive angled feel as opposed to being straight up and down like most pistol grips. They did a fantastic job with this design. I fitted an extra Harris bipod to the stock and proceeded to fit the action.
Fitting the Boyd's At-One Thumbhole stock should be relatively painless in most cases. If there is an issue, I am usually the type that will run into it first.
In this case it had to do with the front action screw. It ended up being too long with the new stock. The barrelled receiver droped right in and the rear action screw fit perfectly, but the front one bottomed out and was long enough that the barrelled action would move up and down.
Not being completely sold on the setup I found two small washers and put them behind the head of the screw and reinstalled it. This took up enough slack for the action to sit true in the stock. After shooting and being quite satisfied with the results, I removed the screw, cut it to size and reinstalled it.
You may not run into this with your rifle, it has to do when manufacturers make minute changes and obviously one was made here or the fit would have been perfect. If you have no time for modifying screws or other small parts, customer service at Boyds may have the parts in question if you call customer service.
For more information on Boyds Hardwood Gunstocks please visit their website: https://www.boydsgunstocks.com/product-configurator
About Mike Searson
Mike Searson's career as a shooter began as a Marine Rifleman at age 17. He has worked in the firearms industry his entire adult life as a Gunsmith, Ballistician, Consultant, Salesman, Author and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1989.
Mike has written over 2000 articles for many magazines, websites and newsletters including Blade, RECOIL, OFF-GRID, Tactical Officer, SWAT, Tactical World, Gun Digest, Examiner.com and the US Concealed Carry Association as well as AmmoLand Shooting Sports News.
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