Tuning A Tikka T1X With Bolt Shims

| December 30, 2022 | 1 Comments

Tikka T1X Bolt Shims Journey

Part of the fun in 22LR is the chase to supreme accuracy at least for me it is. Depending upon the rifle some need a little additional help more so than others. This Tikka didn’t require anything really it was very accurate and competitive right out of the box.

You can see the very first shots on the range here 


Along with what I thought to be the only mod needed a Yo Dave trigger kit. 

Why Bolt Shims From TriggerShims.com

You may be wondering if this Tikka is as close to perfect as they come out of the box then why bolt shims from Triggershims.com In all of my testing on different 22 rifles I have discovered a few things to add to accuracy. 

  1. A carbon ring free barrel
  2. Good consistent ammo
  3. A properly fouled barrel (not to clean not to dirty) there is a sweet spot that is different for every barrel
  4. An awesome trigger
  5. A properly bedded rifle
  6. Proper headspace (this is where bolt shims come into play)

That is not a list of most important to least as each modification alone adds minimal improvement but together you can turn a .5in shooting rifle into a .3in shooting rifle. The hidden message in all of these tuneups are consistency. So yes bolt shims have made a believer out of me having tested them in a Remington 40X, Lithgow LA101, CZ452 and CZ455 

Tikka T1X First Trip With Bolt Shims

Originally the Tikka was installed with .004 bolt shims thickness and was going to be tested with Lapua Biathlon Extreme. It was dead of winter and after a major storm and I wanted to give the Tikka it’s best shot at success. That alone can be very difficult during the winter, finding a calm day is almost impossible. At minimal winds are consistent between 10MPH and 25MPH on a normal day. 

Upon arriving at the range I found out the Lapua would not allow the bolt to close with the .004 bolt shim installed. I ended up testing with Eley Match, which fed and bolt closed easily. This is a great example of why headspace is so critical because 22lr headspaces off the rim of the cartridge and there really is no specification for what’s right. I believe it also makes a statement for bolt shims in being able to adjust your headspace. You can setup a rifle to shoot with one specific brand of ammo that drives the best results. For me it is about better consistency over a wide range of ammo. With the pandemic logistic problems and shortages of 22LR I prefer to be out shooting good to great groups with a variety of ammo. Instead of home on the couch not shooting because my rifle is setup for one specific brand, the choice is yours.

Let’s See How The Tikka and .004 Did On The Range

Day After Fine Tuning The Tikka T1X

All though the previous days outing I managed to achieve a .5in group in 14MPH winds


I knew there was more to be gained from this rifle with the right simple tweaks. Staying true to my view of bolt shims (consistency) I went back home and started to get to work. Though I had to confess, I had to call someone (Big Red) to ask for permission to modify his rifle it is a respect thing to me. After a little ribbing I got the green light and swapped the .004 shim for the .002. The very next evening after work back to the range I would head. What a difference in weather conditions. One day later there is no snow on the ground and the wind has picked up AFTER the storm 15 to 18MPH. In these conditions will it make a difference let’s see.


A .5in Rifle To A .3in Rifle



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1 Comment on "Tuning A Tikka T1X With Bolt Shims"

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  1. Todd Moody says:

    Hey Elijah,
    Keep the old 22lr rifles coming my friend. They aren’t stepping stones to today’s 22s, they will still compete and win.
    I’m writing here under one of your bolt shim video posts in order to thank you for being kind enough to share Lance Shivelys business, Trigger Shims, with your followers.
    I ordered shims for my 40X, my Winchester 75 and both my Remington 513Ts. The products Lance produces are top shelf and as advertised.
    More importantly, as you said in a early bolt shim video, Lance as a human being is top shelf. I can’t think of a better business experience I’ve ever had.
    On a personal note: I consider Lance a friend and a person of high character. Please let your base know Elijah, all guns wear and a quality set of shims are always worth having in the shop for when that trigger and/or bolt gets sloppy. Lance is your man.
    Thank you again Elijah, for sharing.
    Todd Moody

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