Since the dawn of mankind, hunters, sports shooters, and enthusiasts have been occupied by one great question: Synthetic stock or wood stock, what’s really better? The dawn of mankind might be an exaggeration. But truly since the early ‘60s, when major rifle manufacturers introduced synthetic stocks to the market, us gun folks have done what we do best: form an opinion. However, opinion doesn’t always match reality. So, let’s pit these stocks against each other, to help you decide what’s best for you and your practice accuracy.
We can all admit it, the gun is one beautiful, attractive, and elegant piece of engineering. But even the most stunning herds have their black sheep. To some, those may be the uniformed black molded synthetic stocks of today. To others, the warm wood stocks of yesteryear. Does the look of either make a difference in accuracy? Physically, probably not. But mentally, it does. Loving the look and feel of your gun can result in more practice time, which leads to improved accuracy.
Most would agree that a heavier rifle means less recoil and a more stationary barrel. But does that still echo true, after carrying it to the top of a valley chasing game? While that ten pound wood stocked rifle is a breeze to carry from the trunk to the shooting line, it can be excessive to lug around hunting in the rockies. Tired muscles dont aid accuracy, in those final moments before a shot. Determining your rifle’s main use will help you decide if a heavier wood stock or a lightweight synthetic stock is more accurate for your intended activities.
Wood stocks (no matter how stable the wood) will always continue to move and change, with environmental conditions like temperature and humidity. This means that over time, your scope can go out of zero. Not a problem for anybody who has the ability to easily resight in their rifle. But this can become annoying for a part-time shooter who hasn’t yet learned or developed these skills. Wood stocks also often require more care than their synthetic counterparts. The finish wears out faster, making it easier to get dents and scratches. Are you looking for the lifelong character and the upkeep ritual of a wood stock, or the buy-and-forget low-maintenance style of a synthetic stock? For your best accuracy, just make sure you zero-in on your scope.
It’s pretty clear why this debate has been ongoing for so long. Both have their pros and cons, but accuracy wise, it ultimately comes down to the shooter’s preferences and habits. We hope this helps in deciding if a wood or synthetic stock is best for you. The firearm experts at Canada’s Gun Store are also always here to answer any questions about wood or synthetic stocks, or anything else gun or gear related. Happy shooting, and always be safe!