SHOT Show 2008:
Look for more rifles, carbines based on the AR-15 platform
by Gun Week staff
How’s this for big news in the long gun arena for 2008: Marlin is back in the bolt-action rifle market, and Remington is introducing an AR-15 type rifle!
And by oddball coincidence, Remington announced at the end of the year that it was buying Marlin, so wonders just won’t cease (see related story elsewhere in this issue).
That’s just some of the big news coming out of the firearms industry this year, with all of these firearms making their debut during the 30th annual Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show in Las Vegas, NV, Feb. 2-5.
Let’s take a look at that new Marlin (100 Kenna Dr., PO Box 248, Dept. GWK, North Haven, CT 06437; phone: 203-239-5621; on-line: www.marlinfirearms.com). It’s dubbed the XL-7, a long-action model initially chambered in .30-06, .270 Win. and .25-06 Rem, with either a black synthetic or Realtree All Purpose Green HD camo stock, which is fitted with a Soft-Tech recoil pad. The design features a new Pro-Fire accuracy-enhancing trigger, factory set at 2.5 pounds, though it can be adjusted by the user. Marlin designers pillar bedded the action, and there’s a two-position thumb safety on the right rear of the receiver. It comes with a scope base.
Marlin also announced the Model 917VT chambered in .17 HMR with a 22-inch blued heavy barrel and brown laminate thumbhole stock with raised cheekpiece. The receiver is grooved for a rimfire scope mount and it is also drilled and tapped for scope bases.
Certain to rock some worlds, Remington’s (870 Remington Dr., Dept. GWK, Madison, NC 27025; phone: 800-243-9700; on-line: www.remington.com) new AR-15 clone is the R-15 VTR, and it has all the makings of a winner. Check out these features: free-floating, button-rifled 0.680-inch chrome moly steel barrel with six longitudinal flute; a recessed hunting crown; a receiver-length Picatinny rail; machined aluminum forend tube; synthetic butt stock or telescoping stock, and full Advantage Max-1 HD camo finish. Each rifle comes with a 5-round magazine, and after-market magazines will fit. And the kicker: Remington chambers this rifle in .204 Ruger as well as the traditional .223 Rem.
The 25th Anniversary Model Seven commemorative chambered in 7mm-08 Rem. has a blue receiver, barrel and bolt, 22-inch barrel, custom laser engraving on the walnut stock and SuperCell recoil pad, while the new Model 770 stainless camo has a detachable magazine, 22-inch barrel for standard calibers and 24-inches for the magnums, and a Realtree AP-HD camo finish on the stock.
Remington’s Model 700 CDL has a polished blue finish, satin walnut stock with black forend tip, SuperCell recoil pad, 24-inch barrel for standard calibers and 26-inches for magnums, and the new X-Mark Pro trigger. There’s a stainless fluted limited edition version of the Model 700 CDL, chambered in .260 Rem. with a 24-inch magnum contour 416 stainless barrel.
The Model 700 XCR limited edition rifle is chambered in 7mm Rem. Ultra Mag with a 26-inch stainless barrel. A Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation logo is laser engraved into the floorplate and the stock features Realtree AP camo.
Remington’s Model 798 Safari Grade rifle chambered in .375 H&H Magnum and .458 Win. Magnum has a 22-inch barrel with a hooded front sight, adjutable rear, barrel band and swivel stud, single-stage trigger, RealWood B-grade walnut laminate stock, and controlled round feed Mauser action.
Several left hand models have been announced, including the SPS Varmint with a 26-inch varmint contour barrel, synthetic stock, X-Mark Pro adjustable trigger and five caliber choices. The Model 700 XCR has a black synthetic stock, 24- or 26-inch barrel (depending upon caliber), an X-Mark Pro trigger and SperCell recoil pad. Also, there’s an SPS Youth Model for lefties, with a 20-inch barrel, X-Mark Pro trigger, SuperCell recoil pad and shorter stock. It is chambered for .243 Win., and 7mm-08 Rem.
The venerable Model 700 is now chambered in .257 Weatherby. It has a 26-inch barrel, either a standard checkered walnut stock or laminate stock. The Model 700 CDL Boone & Crockett model has a brown laminate stock, 24- or 26-inch fluted barrel, B&C medallion grip cap and laser engraving on the barrel.
Remington’s Model 700 SPS rifle is chambered in 7mm Rem. Ultra Mag, with a 26-inch barrel in either stainless or blued finish.
There’s a Model 700 VTR (Varmint Target Rifle) with an eye-catching 22-inch triangular barrel with integral muzzle break, chambered in .223 Rem. or .308 Win.
Meanwhile, the Model Seven Predator family features full coverage Mossy Oak Brush camo, 22-inch fluted barrel, X-Mark Pro trigger, and five caliber options, while the Model 700 VSSF (varmint synthetic stainless fluted) rifle is now chambered in .17 Rem. Fireball. It has a 26-inch fluted stainless barrel, HS Precision stock with aluminum bedding block and Beavertail forend.
Remington’s Model 597 semi-auto Blaze Camo rimfires feature either a Mossy Oak Blaze Orange or Remington’s Blaze Pink camo. The Model 597 TVP (Target Varmint Plinker) semi-auto has a free floating 20-inch stainless steel heavy target barrel, while the Model 597 Yellow Jacket has a black/grey and yellow laminate target style stock, 20-inch barrel, 10-round magazine and factory-mounted scope rail.
Shotgunners will delight with the ShurShot stock, featured on several models.
Also joining the AR-15 rush for the first time is Charles Daly/KBI (PO Box 6625, Dept. GWK, Harrisburg, PA 17112; phone: 717-540-8518; on-line: www.kbi-inc.com) with the introduction of the CDD-15 series. There are four carbines and two rifles in the lineup, all chambered in .223 Rem. Carbines have 16-inch barrels while Daly’s DR-15 target rifle model has a 20-inch chrome-lined 4140 chrome-moly match H-bar barrel and the DV-24 match target and varmint rifle has a 24-inch stainless steel bull barrel.
Browning (One Browning Place, Dept. GWK, Morgan, UT 84050; phone: 801-876-2711; on-line: www.browning.com) has announced the new X-Bolt centerfire rifle with a new trigger system called the X-Bolt Feather trigger, an adjustable three-lever system. It is adjustable from 3 to 5 pounds. There are the wood stocked models in the Hunter and Medallion families and composite stocked models in the Composite Stalker and Stainless Stalker series, and both long- and short-action models.
Several new shotguns are also being introduced, including the Citori 625, an over-and-under shotgun in both field and sporting models. It has a single selective trigger, Vector Pro extended forcing cone, back-bored barrels and Invector Plus choke tubes.
The new Silver Turkey in Mossy Oak New Break-Up camo has a HiViz 4-in-1 fiber optic turkey sight.
Browning is also introducing the new small-frame 20-gauge Silver Hunter and Silver Micro models for small-frame shooters. There is also a 12-gauge Silver Sporting Micro in 12-gauge.
You read earlier about the revival of the Model 70 from Winchester (275 Winchester Ave., Dept. GWK, Morgan, UT 84050; phone: 801-876-3440; on-line: www.winchester-guns.com) but to recap, this one a new three-lever “M.O.A.” trigger system that comes from the factory with a 3.75-pound trigger pull, and is adjustable from 3 to 5 pounds. It also boasts the classic Pre-64 controlled round feeding, blade-type ejector, and hammer-forged barrel with target crown. The Model 70 will be available in Super Grade, Fetherweight Deluxe, Sporter Deluxe and Extreme Weather SS models.
Winchester is also returning the popular Speed Pump shotgun to dealer shelves. There are three models, the Walnut Field, Black Shadow and Defender, all featuring Back-Bored Technology barrels. Barrel lengths on the Walnut Field and Black Shadow models are 26 or 28 inches, while the Speed Pump Defender has a chrome plated 18-inch cylinder choke barrel.
Savage (100 Springdale Road, Dept. GWK, Westfield, MA 01085; phone: 800-235-1821; on-line: www.savagearms.com) is commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Model 110 bolt-action rifle, chambered in .300 Savage on a short action, the first Savage bolt gun chambered for this cartridge. Only 1,000 of these rifles are available, all with a high luster blue barreled action, hinged floorplate with 24-karat gold plating and etching. It has a semi-fancy American walnut stock with unique classic checkering pattern and shadow line cheekpiece.
Also new is the Model 25 varmint rifle, chambered in .223 Rem. and .204 Ruger. It has a floating barrel, small frame, 60-degree bolt, jeweled bolt, dual pillar bedding, three locking lugs and adjustable AccuTrigger. The Lightweight Varminter version has a 24-inch fluted medium contour satin blue barrel with button rifling and recessed target crown, and the Model 25 Lightweight Varminter Thumbhole is the same gun with a brown laminated thumbhole stock.
New from Barrett (PO Box 1077, Dept. GWK, Murfreesboro, TN 37133; phone: 615-896-2938; on-line: www.barrettrifles.com) is the REC7 chambered in 6.8 SPC. Built on the AR configuration with a forged 7075 alumimum upper and lower receiver, and chrome-lined gas block, it hits the scale at 7.62 pounds empty. This carbine has a chrome-lined 16-inch free-floating barrel with a 1:10-inch rifling twist, and it
is fitted with an A-2 style compensator.
Ruger (200 Ruger Rd., Dept. GWK, Prescott, AZ 86301; phone: 520-541-8820; on-line: www.ruger.com) is introducing two new versions of the M77 Hawkeye, the RCMs (Ruger Compact Magnums) chambered for two new cartridges, the .300 RCM and .338 RCM. This RCM version has a 20-inch barrel, Ruger’s LC6 trigger and new stock dimensions. The Hawkeye RCM rifle has Mauser-type controlled round feeding, a claw extractor, three-position safety, solid rubber recoil pad and a set of Ruger rings.
Also, the M77 Hawkeye will be offered in a left-hand version this year. These rifles will be chambered for several popular cartridges including .270 Win., .25-06 Rem., .30-06, 7mm Rem. Magnum, .300 Win. Magnum and .375 Ruger.
Fans of Blaser (220-G Log Canoe Cir., Dept. GWK, Stevensville, MD 21666; phone: 410-604-1498; on-line: www.blaser.de) will want to see their new bolt-action R-93 Selous, a gun designed primarily as a safari rifle. It features interchangeable barrels chambered in .416 Rem. Magnum, .375 H&H Magnum and .300 Win. Magnum. It has a steel case-hardened receiver, gold embellishments, open sights, Grade 7 walnut stock with a pistol grip cap and ebony tip, and it comes packaged with a Swarovski Optik safari grade riflescope and rail mount system.
New single-shot rifle entries from H&R 1871 (Industrial Rowe, Dept. GWK ,, Gardner, MA 01440; phone: 978-632-9393; on-line: www.hr1871.com) include an Ultra Hunter model newly chambered in .45-70 Govt. It has a two-piece cinnamon-colored laminate thumbhole stock with raised comb height to bring the eye to the level of a scope. It has a 24-inch stainless steel barrel and receiver with a factory-mounted scope base, synthetic trigger guard and forend spacer. The stock has a rubber butt pad and QD sling swivel studs.
The Ultra Varmint also has a cinnamon-colored laminate hardwood stock with rubber butt pad and sling swivel studs, 24-inch heavy barrel and is chambered in .223 Rem., .222-250 Rem., and .243 Win.
The new Handi-Mag is chambered for 7mm Rem. Magnum and .300 Win. Magnum. It has a stainless steel 26-inch barrel, polished blue steel receiver, synthetic stock and forearm, soft recoil pad and QD sling swivel studs.
Century International Arms (430 South Congress Ave., Suite 1, Dept. GWK, Delray Beach, FL 33445; phone:800-527-1252; on-line: www.centuryarms.com) is spotlighting its new C-15 Sporter, chambered in 5.56mm. It has a 20-inch heavy barrel with flash suppressor on an A2 style AR15 platform. It comes with a 30-round magazine. Also new to the mix is the Golani semi-auto sporter in 5.56mm. It has a 21-inch barrel, 35-round magazine and folding stock. There’s also a new Polish Tantal chambered in 5.45x39mm. It’s an AK-style rifle with a side folding stock, 16.6-inch barrel and synthetic handguard.
Four new semi-auto shotguns from Benelli and Franchi (17603 Indian Head Highway, Dept. GWK, Accokeek, MD 20607; phone: 301-283-6981; on-line: www.benelliusa.com) should get your juices flowing. The lineup includes the 12-gauge, 3-inch magnum Legacy Sport model with either a 28- or 30-inch Crio vent rib barrel and extended Crio chokes. It has a grade AA walnut stock and forearm and a gel recoil pad. Joining it is the M2 Field Ultra Light 20-gauge, weighing about 5.8 pounds. It has a 3-inch chamber, 24-inch carbon fiber vent rib barrel with a bead front sight, walnut stock and forearm.
From Franchi, the new 12-gauge I-12 Sporting model has an elongated forcing cone, 30-inch ported barrel with a 10mm target rib and green fiber optic front sight. The barrel is fitted with interchangeable extended chokes. There’s also a new lightweight Model I-12 Upland Hunter in 12-gauge with a 26-inch vent rib barrel and red fiber optic bar front sight. It has a Grade A walnut stock and forearm, and a lightweight aluminum alloy receiver strengthened with steel inserts.
Thompson/Center (PO Box 5002, Dept. GWK, Rochester, NH 03867; phone: 603-332-2394; on-line: www.tcarms.com) is introducing the Icon Classic long action and the Icon WS (for WeatherShield), a pair of bolt-action rifles. The Icon Classic is chambered in .270 Win., .30-06, 7mm Rem. Magnum and .300 Win. Magnum. It has a 24-inch blued barrel, a receiver with integral machined Weaver-style scope bases, and an American walnut stock with cut checkering.
The Icon WS is a short-action model chambered in .22-250 Rem., .243 Win., .308 Win., and .30 TC, with a 24-inch barrel, a WeatherShield finish on the metal, and the receiver features a milled integral Weaver-style scope base. The Hogue stock is over-molded IBS in either black or Realtree AP camo.
Henry Repeating Arms (110 - 8th St., Dept. GWK, Brooklyn, NY 11215; phone: 718-499-5600; on-line: www.henryrepeating.com) has announced three rifles commemorating the 10th anniversary of Boy Scout venturing. The special rifles include a Golden Boy, a Henry Lever Action blued receiver model and a Big Boy in .44 Magnum. The BSA Venturing Golden Boy is chambered in .22 Long Rifle and will carry 16 LR cartridges or 21 Short cartridges. The .44 Magnum Big Boy model has a 10-round tubular magazine, 20-inch octagonal barrel, American walnut stock and Marbles rear sight with brass beaded front sight.
Henry also offers two versions of its new .30-30 Win. lever action, one with a brass receiver and octagonal barrel and the other with blued receiver and round barrel.
New from Smith & Wesson (2100 Roosevelt Ave., Dept. GWK, Springfield, MA 01104; phone: 413-781-8300; on-line: www.smithandwesson.com) are additional variations of the M&P 15, and a bolt-action i-Bolt rifle chambered in several popular big game calibers. The new i-Bolt is finished in Realtree AP camo and it has a Monte Carlo comb stock, and 23-inch stainless barrel and receiver. The receiver is topped by a rail that will accept Weaver-style rings.
There are two new versions of the M&P15 PC model.
A new bullpup from Kel-Tec (PO Box 236009, Dept. GWK, Cocoa, FL 32926; phone: 321-631-0068; on-line: www.kel-tec.com) is called the REB (for Rifle Forward-ejection Bullpup). Chambered in 7.62mm NATO, the RFB is a gas-operated self-loader with 18, 24 and 32 inch barrel options. It has ambidextrous controls, a dual-action safety, Mil-Spec Picatinny-type rail on top of the receiver, and a free-floating four-sided Picatinny forend or bipod option.
Mossberg (7 Grasso Ave., Dept. GWK, North Haven, CT 06473; phone: 203-230-5300; on-line: www.mossberg.com) is entering the lever-action rifle market with the Model 464, chambered in .30-30 Win. At first glance it has the lines of the venerable Model 94, with a 20-inch barrel, full-length tubular magazine and hardwood stock. But it also boasts a two-position tang safety behind the hammer, an adjustable folding rear sight, and the receiver is drilled and tapped for scope mounting.
A new lightweight Vanguard Back Country rifle from Weatherby (1605 Commerce Way, Dept. GWK, Paso Robles, CA 93446; phone: 805-227-2600; on-line: www.weatherby.com) should be popular in either of its two versions. One model has a synthetic stock with a spiderweb pattern finish, 24-inch fluted stainless steel barrel and action. The stock has a Pachmayr Decelerator recoil pad. The other has an injection molded stock with desert camo finish, 24-inch blued barrel and receiver, and is offered in several calibers.
Weatherby also has some new shotguns, all variations of its new D’Italia lineup, which are all made in Italy. The Athena D’Italia III is chambered in 12-, 20- and 28-gauge, with barrel lengths of 26 or 28 inches. The Athena D’Italia IV is chambered in 12-, 20- and 28-gauge, all three with 26-inch stack barrels, and the Athena D’Italia V, is available in 12- and 20-gauge with an oil-finished walnut stock with 20 LPI checkering, Damascened monobloc barrel and barrel lengths of 26 or 28 inches.
Nosler’s (PO Box 671, Dept. GWK, Bend, OR 97709; phone: 541-382-3921; on-line: www.nosler.com) latest additions to the Custom Model 48 bolt-action rifle family are short-action models chambered in .260 Rem., 7mm-08 Rem., and .308 Win. The Model 48 has a hand-lapped 24-inch match grade stainless steel barrel, and a MicroSlick coating on all interior metal surfaces.
Sig Sauer (18 Industrial Dr., Dept. GWK, Exeter, NH 03833; phone: 603-772-2302; on-line: www.sigsauer.com) has announced the new SIG 556 SWAT, chambered for the 5.56mm NATO cartridge, with a 16-inch hammer forged barrel, collapsible carbine buttstock, alloy quad rail and a corrosion-resistant Nitron X finish. It features a Grip-light vertical forend grip with removable tactical LED flashlight, a flip-up front and rear sight system and four Picatinny style rails on the forearm. The receiver also is topped with a Picatinny rail.
After waiting a year, Rossi (16175 NW 49th Ave., Dept. GWK, Miami, FL 33014; phone: 800-948-8029; on-line: www.rossiusa.com) now has the Trifecta combo gun with interchangeable barrels chambered in .243 Win., .22 Long Rifle and 20-gauge. This single-shot model has the Taurus Security System, a transfer bar mechanism and manual safety. The 20-gauge barrel has a bead front sight, while the centerfire rifle barrel comes with a factory-mounted scope base. The rimfire barrel features a fiber optic sight setup.
New from Traditions (1375 Boston Post Rd., Dept. GWK, Old Saybrook, CT 06475; phone: 860-388-4656; on-line: www.traditionsfirearms.com) is the Outfitter single-shot rifle, available in several calibers, that is convertible to either a shotgun or muzzleloader. Centerfire calibers include .243 Win., .270 Win., .308 Win., .30-06, .45-70 Govt., .444 Marlin and 7mm-08 Rem. Shotgun options are 12- and 20-gauge. Rifle barrels measure 24 inches, and the muzzleloading barrel is 28 inches long.
Beretta (17601 Beretta Dr., Dept. GWK, Accokeek, MD 20607; phone: 301-283-2191; on-line: www.berettausa.com) has announced the new SV10 Perennia over-and-under shotgun. It features an engraved receiver, reinforced ejectors and hinge pin, deep breech shoulders, and a checkered forearm that detaches via a lever. The design also incorporates a quick-detachable trigger housing, re-designed top tang safety with integral trigger/barrel selector, and a new locking system between stock and receiver.
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