Here are some
reviews and comments on a few of the rifles I've created. Scroll down to
the Handloader article for some
background information about me, or click any of the magazine covers
for the other stories.
Oct 1998 pp. 41-42
My .300 Winchester Magnums have been mostly 1963-vintage model 70s. I wish now I hadn't sold those. A Ruger No. 1B has replaced them. It's scoped with a 6x Leupold. My .308 Norma is a Remington 78 action with a No. 4 Douglas barrel. It wears a 6x Redfield. The .30-338, a custom rifle, was built on a 1950-era Model 70 by Rick Freudenberg of Seattle.
I ordered that rifle a year ago as I write this, after I saw Rick's work and talked with him at the NRA show in Seattle. The rifle arrived only a month ago. What distinguishes Rick from most other riflemakers is his competitive shooting background. He builds match rifles as well as sporters, and accuracy matters a great deal to him.
A New Jersey native, Rick spent four years as a diesel and truck mechanic in the Marine Corps before honing his skills as a machinist in New York. He attended the Colorado School of Trades from 1980 to 1983, logging 3,000 hours in gunsmithing courses. He shot his first elk in Colorado in 1981 with a 6.5-284 he built himself.
In 1990 Rick bought a Springfield with a Marksman stock and began shooting the National Match course. Those events and subsequent 1,000-yard matches have taught him a lot about rifle accuracy. Now target rifles account for about 40 percent of Rick's business and hunting rifles the remaining 60 percent. He still likes the 6.5-284 for both hunting and competition. "It doesn't kick much. It shoots flat and is very accurate."
Now 44, Rick has established a solid local reputation among shooters. I was taken not only with his attention to accuracy but also the businesslike form of his rifles. The .30-338 is typical, with its High Tech Specialties stock, fluted stainless Lilja barrel and Teflon metal finish. You can specify the color of that Teflon, which is applied by a Colorado firm. My .30-338 has dark green metal, though I was also impressed with the battleship gray on other Freudenberg rifles. There's little not to like about the looks.
I stayed with the model 70 trigger, as I consider it the best ever designed for a hunting rifle. However, Rick routinely installs Jewell triggers on match rifles. He'll also work with other actions, like the Wichita. Match rifles wear McMillan target stocks. Rick prefers Warne QD and Conetrol mounts. I specified the Conetrol, which I like very much. They're trim and sleek. Finished in the same Teflon color as the rifle, they complement it beautifully. Incidentally, both Rick and George Miller at Conetrols suggested I use high rings. Well aware that I insist on low scope mountings, they explained that low Conetrols are very low and suitable for only a few applications. I agreed to give the high rings a try. They positioned the scope about where I'd expect it with low Leupold or Redfield rings.
USED WITH PERMISSION FROM
WOLFE PUBLISHING COMPANY