I'd debated a number of calibers, including .300 Blackout, 6.8 SPC, 6.5 Grendel, and .458 SOCOM. Knowing FlintKnapper from the Texas CHL Forum, I'd caught wind of the long-running thread he's got over at THR describing his efforts at controlling the rampant pig problem. At current count, there are 1232 posts in that thread, and it's totally worth the read.
He had a .458 SOCOM purpose-built for his hog control efforts, at which it has proven more than effective. The more I read about the caliber and its effectiveness, the more it seemed to be what I wanted. It is not a long-range round, being mainly effective under 200y. Long distance shooting is another interest of mine, but that will likely have to wait for another build, possibly in 6.5 Grendel.
Sometime late last year, I decided the .458 SOCOM was the direction I was going to take with my future rifle. When Wally over at York Arms announced that he would be starting production of custom-engraved lower receivers, I took the opportunity to have one made, marked in 458 SOCOM to start my project. The resulting lower is of excellent quality and finish. Thanks to Wally for putting up with my ridiculously long custom serial number. Here she is:
(Thanks to Wally for the image)
I'm working on getting the lower finished in Duracoat, at which time I'll post new photos.
Being a fan of stout rifles, I decided on the following details:
20" Barrel, heavy profile, carbine gas system
Magpul PRS stock in FDE
RRA Advanced Half Quad Free-float handguard (same as my 5.56 AR, but in rifle length)
Magpul MIAD grip in FDE
I've got a Weaver Classic Extreme 1.5-4.5x24 scope to top the rifle off with, and will be getting a Larue LT104 for mounting.
As production rifles in .458 SOCOM almost universally come with 16" barrels, I'm having Wally make a barrel for me to get the barrel length that I want, along with opening of the ejection port and a couple other custom items.
We haven't quite worked out a timeline for everything, but I'll update here as the project progresses.
With loaded ammo in .458 SOCOM difficult to obtain and quite expensive (around $3/round), I've already procured dies and components for loading for the caliber. Expect updates regarding my efforts in that area as well.