September 2, 2020
Posted By Jason

Tikka T3 Thumbhole Tactical Stock Review

This is Jason McCann with Tikka Performance Center. Today, we're going to be looking at Thumbhole Tactical Stock. This is an incredibly well-made stock, especially for a laminate, completely changed my perception of laminate stocks. Most of the ones I've seen are rather crummy, they seem cheap, they seem just like pieces of junk. Chad does an incredible job of making these into works of art. First, let's start here, this provides a one-inch LimbSaver recoil pad on every single stock. Every single stock, even their ultralights can handle a 338 win mag without a problem. This Thumbhole Tactical has a nice raised comb. The comb is level to the actual action. So when you're looking through your scope, you stay nice and level, no matter what position you're in, no matter what the recoil position is. It's nice and raised for those large objective scopes. Has a nice palm swell in here, if you're a guy like me with big mitts, you'll like this, has ample room for your thumb, nice swell, nice flat base here for shooting at a bench or from prone. And then the lines of the stock are excellent, you come through here, this is set up for a Tikka T3 which has a nice slope in the rear tang, it matches that very well, perfect cut out. The feel on this is just like furniture, as far as the smoothness and how everything is put together here. Raises up with the action, nice heavy barreled channel, free-floated all the way from the action out to the end. You can get this with actual vertical vents in here and side vents, which a lot of people don't realize that a vertical vent is the only thing that will actually cool your barrel, the side vents are more for the show, that's easily available. And a nice wide [inaudible 00:02:07] in here for resting it on a bag, it's actually just under three inches here, they have an F class model on a competition, tactical model if you want a perfect three-inch straight down the line. 

Now, also on here, and this should prove extremely accurate, the [inaudible 00:02:28] recoil lug, and it uses 7075 aluminum or steel depending on your request, 7075 aluminum is stronger than steel, so they are used in the space shuttle and in the military, and it's significantly lighter. And it actually beds this in the stock. So that way, I mean, there's just no movement here, even with high recoiling calibers, 338 win mag, you're not going to get dense that you'll see with the cheap aluminum recoil lug in the standard Tikka. Ample room for the barrel here, again, the machine work is excellent, the way that he cuts this out, and the colors are absolutely phenomenal. 

So here's the left side of the stock, and you can see here, ample space for your cheek to rest on, very, very comfortable. This is where your thumb is going to come, wrap around here, and Chad does a great thing here with a cutout for the bolt. One of the things I don't like about raised cheekpieces on a lot of stocks is the fact that you have to lower it all the way in order to get your bolt out. This, according to Chad, you can actually take the bolt out without removing the action from the stock or should be a straight back pool. And once we get the actual gun in the stock we will definitely take a look at it. The gun that I want to put in the stock is not that from the gunsmith yet, I'm having a custom seven sound built on a Tikka T3. What we're going to do is we're actually going to put our 223 test mule in here and take it to the range and we're going to show you how easy it is to swap out the stock. Again, look at the lines on this stock and the coloration, this is one of the custom color inlets which is the Camo. And so you have multiple different colors coming through here, they blend well, doesn't look cheap. And for those of you who don't know laminate, I mean, this is a true laminate stock which is real wood pressed together with actually composite sandwiched in between. And so what it does is it doesn't swell with moisture, it doesn't become more brittle like the composite in cold weather, it's actually more stable in a composite, more stable and wood stock is the best of both worlds. And it just looks absolutely fantastic. See the bipod up at the front clips on the front stud, plenty of room for a [inaudible 00:04:50] very stable, this is a pivoting, Harris pivoting bipod, just plenty of room there and playing the stock, and it just feels. I have big mitts and I can't wait to get an action inside of here. 

Hi, this is Jason McCann from Tikka Performance Center. We're going to show you how easy it is to take your standard Tikka T3 and turn it into a Tactical TackDriver. So we have here is my personal 223, it's a one in eight twists. This thing, as is, is an excellent shooter. We're going to put the Thumbhole Tactical Stock on it. We're going to put a whole new trigger kit on it. We're going to put a new scope and bolt handle, bolt shroud, muzzle brake, we're going to do the works and we are going to show you how easy it is to actually do all this. So first make sure nothing is in the chamber, pull out the bolt, pull out the magazine, and we're going to take off our scope. It's been an excellent scope. This is the Vortex PST focal plane. Oh didn't get that one out enough. Six to 24, excellent glass. We're actually going to put the second focal plane on there just because they mainly shoot people with this gun, and I'd like to have the second focal plane to simply have a smaller finer crosshair. So we have the scope off of it, which is you always want to do before you take the stock off, you don't want to put any pressure on your scope, and we're going to flip this over just like so. Take out two action screws. If you ever forget, the front one is the short one, the rear one is the long one. Hop these right out. I always use this opportunity, since it's already down, pop out the bottom metal, just takes a little bit of a tug. Set that aside when you use that in our new stock, and then just lift the stock right off the action, I am going to put this there. Now, we are going to take this piece of Tupperware, set it to the side. 

Alright, so before we put the new stock on, we're just going to kind of clean up the action just a little bit. You don't want to trap anything on underneath there, you shoot as much as we do, we go through a lot of solvents, we go through a lot of cleaners, just making sure that everything stays nice and clean. I know there are some guys out there who think that you should never clean your gun and all the gunk in there kind of fills in the crevices in your barrel, and I read a lot about the validity of that, there is some but personally I like always having a really nice clean gun making sure that it's always working very, very well. So we are just going to put a thin coat of oil on these parts that are going to be touching the stock, just to get a little bit of a moisture barrier. 

Alright, now let's grab our Thumbhole Tactical Stock here. Now we're putting these stocks on. We have the integrated recoil lug here. It's going to go on this notch on the action here. As long as we have that lined up, it should go in rather smooth, got that lined up. We're going to put bottom metal back in just be very careful, the small hole right here for the trigger shoe to go through. Let's make sure it slides right in there. Don't want to damage our nice new trigger. Push that down. The short one in front, a long one in the back. And personally, everybody's guns are a little different. I found that my guns like to be torqued about 40-inch pounds in the rear, 35 in the front has produced some of the best accuracies for me. That's rear [inaudible 00:10:07] down and torque our front one down. It's easy to change the stock. [inaudible 00:10:35] does an excellent job of making sure the fit is excellent on here, you can see just an excellent, excellent looking stock fits the line of the gun very well and the rear tang which is a very difficult part to line up on a Tikka just because the tangs on these are a lot different than other makes and models. You see here, here's our new safety on the new trigger and our safety on safety has a nice – it's kind of a little diamond plating on here, it gives a real tactile feel so you can really feel that you're on that safety. Nice free-floated barrel all the way up to the recoil lug, just an excellent looking stock here. 

So we have our gun, our action in our new stock, now let's do a little work on the bolt. With the stock, one of the challenges, when you have a raised comb, is that you have to lower it in order to remove the bolt from your gun when you're doing the cleaning. But there's a nice channel in here, plenty of room to remove the bolts, plenty of room to put it back in. This follows that channel very well. Good job Chad on designing this. 

Right, well, so far I've put about 35 rounds down the range with the Thumbhole Tactical Stock, extremely comfortable, very comfortable cheek riser, works very well with this nice 50-millimeter Viper PST and very stable, incredibly stable, just feels good on the hand, works well on the rearrest, and works very well on the bipod. So definitely a winner here with the Thumbhole Tactical Stock.