Can I ship my rifle directly to you, or do I have to ship through a dealer?
Shipping of long guns is controlled by the Gun Control Act of 1964. You can ship a long gun directly to us for service or repair and we can return ship directly to you. An adult signature is requred. Do not include any live ammunition in the same container as the rifle. Generally, UPS stores do not ship firearms. You can ship your rifle via a UPS hub, Fed Ex counter, or US Post Office. If you have a UPS or Fed Ex account, you can ship from your office using your account. You can ship regular ground or any Air service. Most shippers prefer the rifle to be in a gun case, inside a cardboard box, with the bolt removed. Make certain you wrap the bolt and any other loose objects in something to prevent damage during transit. If you run into a shipper that does not think it is legal for you to ship your rifle to us, kindly explain that you are shipping to an FFL dealer for repair which is perfectly legal and ask to speak to a supervisor if necessary.
Or, you can use our return shipping service for $249. This includes our padded shipping container shipped to you, your shipping and insurance to us, and final return shipping and insurance to you. All packing materials and instructions are included. Just call and ask for Josh or select option #4 on our phone menu.
Do you work on shotguns, 22’s, AR 15’s, or hand guns?
Hill Country Rifles services only bolt-action, center fire rifles. We also sell our custom 22 LR and our RPR 22’s, 17 HMR’s and 22 WMR’s. We do not repair shotguns, 22’s, or AR platforms of any kind.
Why do you no longer guarantee accuracy on your Accurizing service?
For 20 years our Accurizing service came with a 3-shot, sub-inch group accuracy guarantee at 100 yards with factory ammunition. Over the last year or two we have seen a dramatic decline in factory barrel quality in terms of how straight the chambers are cut. We call this a non-concentric throat. When looking at the barrel with our bore scope, we see some of the riflng touching the case mouth area of the chamber and some of the rifling starts further down the bore. While most rifles with this condition still shoot an inch group, we know that some will not shoot this well, at least not consistently. Most new rifles we get in have this condition to some degree so we removed the accuracy guarantee from the service. This is why we have added our Deluxe Accurizing service which includes our match grade barrel installation and a 3/4″ group accuracy guarantee.
Does HCR do FFL transfers?
HCR does not do FFL transfers. Our records keeping and shipping/receiving capability is fully dedicated to tracking the actions we use to build our rifles. We simply do not have the space, or personnel to properly manage FFL transfers in addition to our custom firearms inventories.
Does HCR offer any guarantees or warranties for their work?
Thank you for choosing Hill Country Rifles! We want to make sure our accuracy guarantees and product warranties are simple and clear. We strive for perfection in all of our work. The primary reason we shoot every rifle in our 100 yard underground test range is to verify that the rifle feeds and ejects perfectly. We test safety and trigger function on every rifle. And we shoot every rifle multiple times to ensure they meet our accuracy guarantees. There is very little that is likely to change in a properly bedded rifle, in a synthetic stock, with a free-floating barrel. If the rifle shot well for us, it should shoot well for you, plain and simple.
Accuracy guarantees are made using recommended factory ammunition. While more than one factory load may meet or exceed our accuracy guarantee, we ask that you use the same ammunition that we used in your rifle for the purpose of the guarantee. Rifles are fired from a front and rear bag rest from a secure bench at a range of 100 yards. Our research has shown that some rifles do not shoot as well from a sled as from a regular front and rear bag set up. Thus, we do not guarantee accuracy when the rifle is shot from a sled or any form of gun vise. Rifles are intended to slide toward the shooter under recoil. Sleds do not allow for this and sometimes cause vertical stringing in groups due to exaggerated muzzle rise.
Warranty: All HCR warranties are transferable. HCR will guarantee the accuracy result of our work as long as the barrel is in good condition and the firearm is well maintained and in good working order. Any work done to the rifle outside of HCR may void your warranty. Our guarantee does not cover scope failures. Scope failure is the most common cause of accuracy loss. If the rifle is disassembled by the owner or a third party, and is not reassembled correctly, we will not honor our warranty until the rifle is correctly assembled at owner’s expense. This includes loose action screws, loose scope base or ring screws, improper magazine box alignment or any other issue that occurs that is not caused by HCR.
Warranty responsibilities: Owner is responsible for return shipping and insurance. HCR will ship back to the customer at no charge and reimburse return ground shipping costs,so long as the problem is covered by warranty. Owner is responsible for using proper cleaning procedures and correct use of solvents. If the problem is the result of poor maintenance, scope failure, loose screws, incorrect assembly by the customer, or failure to use recommended ammunition, all shipping and work will be performed at owner’s expense. In simple terms, if our work is not right, we will fix it and cover all shipping and repair costs to make it right.
What makes your custom rifles different from your competitors?
One big difference is that we actually shoot your rifle multiple times to check feeding, ejection, and accuracy to make sure the rifle is ready for delivery and meets our accuracy guarantee. Believe it or not, most custom rifle builders never shoot their rifles for group tests at 100 yards.½” accuracy is not easy to get. It takes perfect bedding, chambering, great barrel quality, and perfectly fit scope mounts. This is very time consuming. Between barrel break in, feed and function testing, and accuracy testing, we will shoot and clean your rifle several times before it is finished. By shooting our rifles prior to delivery, we ensure that the rifle is performing flawlessly and that your scope is also working correctly. The rifle is sighted in, ballistic turrets are set, and the rifle is ready to hunt. You don’t have to test a bunch of expensive ammo to figure out what the rifle shoots well because we have already done it. Another difference is that we offer a variety of products and price points.We still do in house custom wood stocked rifles as well so old world craftsmanship is alive and well at Hill Country Rifles.
When you shoot for groups, are you shooting from a sled or some kind of vise?
No. All of our shooting is done from a regular front and rear bag on a concrete bench. We have actually found that sleds sometime hurt accuracy instead of help it. A rifle is designed to move backward toward the shooter as it builds chamber pressure and recoil. Sleds prevent this motion from occurring and create immediate and exaggerated muzzle jump. You will often see vertical stringing of groups from a sled that you will not see from bags.
If my stock has an aluminum bedding block, does it still need Accurizing?
Great question. We hear this all the time. An aluminum bedding block is not bedding. Basically the bedding block is not much different from a stock with no bedding except that the aluminum block is very strong and will not shrink, swell, or compress over time. In this way it is superior to a stock with no bedding. However, the bedding block is milled out the same way as a regular stock. Thus, the fit between the bedding block and the receiver and recoil lug is far from perfect. If the rifle has a bedding block and shoots groups smaller than 1″, and holds zero over time, you really do not need further bedding. If the groups are over 1″ or you see regular shifts in your zero, further bedding will help. The aluminum bedding block has been marketed as if it does the same thing as individually bedding a particular action to a particular stock. That is not the case at all. When we bed a stock with an aluminum block, we actually set the stock up in a milling machine and mill out a thin layer of the block. This allows us to get enough bedding material between the block, receiver, and recoil lug to achieve a perfect fit, with better barrel channel alignment, without making the action too high in the stock. We also bed the bottom metal to get perfect alignment between the receiver and the floor plate. Many rifle producers have switched to aluminum bedding blocks or chassis systems to eliminate the labor cost and expertise needed to perfectly bed a bolt action rifle. While some of these rifles will shoot great, many will not shoot nearly as accurately as a properly bedded rifle.
How long does it take to get my new rifle?
Delivery times range from four to eight months on a synthetic stocked rifle depending on what components you select. If we have the stock already in our inventory, we will finish in about four months. If we have to order you stock, delivery time is six to eight months. The Genesis or Old School Classic rifles take eight months to complete due to the nature of the hand crafted wood stocks.