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October 23rd, 2021

Saturday at the Movies: Affordable Rifle Reviews

affordable optics rifle review savage Axis ii mdt guns america
Image courtesy Guns America Digest Savage Axis II Review.

Many of our regular readers are serious competitors who own top-end benchrest, F-Class, Palma, and/or Service Rifles. Such full-custom match rifles can easily exceed $5500 with optic. These premium rifles are a source of pride and competitive success. But many shooters also want something more affordable for fun rimfire matches, plinking, or varmint work. And that’s the focus of this story — good quality rifles that won’t bust your budget.

affordable optics rifle review savage Axis ii mdt guns americaVideo Reviews of Affordable Rifles
We recently found an interesting YouTube Channel that specializes in affordable rifles and scopes. This channel, appropriately named Affordable Optics and Rifle Reviews (AOFF), has 170+ helpful videos online, many with over 100,000 views. The testers are based in Canada, so they offer a perspective that’s a bit different than that of most American gun vloggers.

For todays’ Saturday at the Movies feature, we feature five of our favorite rifle reviews from the AOFF site. These videos are good starting points if you have been considering any of these rifles. Most are multi-purpose rifles that could be used in a tactical match or on a hunt.

1. Savage 110 Precision vs. Ruger Precision Rifle Comparison

These two rifles are direct competitors in the $1300-$1400 market range. The Savage combines the proven model 110 action with a modern Modular Driven Technologies (MDT) chassis. The latest Gen 3 Ruger Precision Rifle comes with a new, free-float M-LOK handguard that provides greater front scope clearance. The Ruger Precision MSR buttstock attaches to an AR-style buffer tube on a left-folding hinge, and the stock adjusts for length of pull and comb height. We have shot both rifles. We like the balance and accuracy of the Savage, but prefer the adjustable butt system on the Ruger.

2. Bergara B-14 vs. Tikka UPR Rifle Comparison

In this interesting comparison video, AOFF tests the Bergara B-14 HMR and the NEW Tikka UPR, both of which could be called cross-over rifles. You can hunt with them or shoot a tactical match. AOFF notes: “Both are GREAT rifles. In our previous reviews on these rifles, both showed great accuracy and performance out to long range (we brought them to 750m).” The Bergara B-14 runs about $1000 USD while the Tikka currently sells for about $1400.

3. Savage Axis II Precision Rifle in MDT Chassis

This video showcases the Savage Axis II Precision, chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor. Priced at $899.99, this rifle offers good performance for the price. It’s a good starter rig if you want to try a PRS/NRL competition, but it can also serve well as a hunting rifle. With adjustable comb and adjustable LOP, the MDT chassis offers good ergonomics. AOFF writes: “A great option for those who are looking to get into long range shooting, but aren’t looking into remortgaging there home to do so.” AOFF says the Savage Axis II is one of the best affordable, chassis rifles on the market because it combines an accurate barreled action with a nice MDT chassis. For more info, read this very thorough Savage Axis II review in Guns America Digest.

4. MDT XRS Modular Chassis System for Tikka T3x

AOFF tested the MDT Chassis with Tikka T3x Varmint in .223 Rem and .308 Win. AOFF states that this MDT Chassis offers good value: “This is not a ‘cheap’ rifle stock, although it IS one most can afford.” The XRS Chassis is designed for shooters who want the ergonomics of a traditional-shaped rifle stock with the benefits of a modern precision rifle chassis system. The MDT XRS Chassis is constructed from a full-length CNC machined core of 6061 aircraft grade aluminum with external textured polymer panels. It is available configured for a variety of short actions including Rem 700, Tikka T1x/T3x, Savage, CZ 457, Howa 1500, and Ruger American.

5. Winchester Wildcat .22 LR Rifle

The Winchester 22 has earned very positive reviews from owners, and it is a true bargain. AOFF reports: “This Winchester rifle proved to be a fun little rifle to shoot and plink with. As light as it is, with minimal recoil makes it a pleasure to shoot. This rifle retails for $230 USD making it not only fun but affordable. Mind you it isn’t perfect. The short stock with the short grip are two … things we found that should be improved on the Winchester Wildcat 22.”

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March 22nd, 2021

Bargain Finder 287: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

AccurateShooter Deals of the Week Weekly Bargain Finder Sale Discount Savings

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Savage Axis II Precision, $779.99

barnard sms action
Compares well with tactical rigs costing much more

Here’s a smart choice for PRS/NRL Factory Class. Get the Savage Axis II Precision rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor for just $779.99. Add a high-quality scope and you’ll have a complete set up for well under $2K with money left over for bipod, support bags, and other accessories. If you are looking for a metal chassis varmint rifle, Sportsman’s Warehouse also has a .223 Rem Axis II Precision on sale for the same $779.99 price.

2. EuroOptic — Trijicon Tenmile Scope Sale — Huge Savings

trijicon tenmile scope sale
These Trijicon optics compare well with NF for much less

Trijicon Tenmile scopes have quickly become popular with F-Class, PRS, and ELR competitors. Check out the Trijicon Tenmile scope sale where you can pick up any of these innovative scopes that feature lit reticles, large 34mm diameter tubes, and many other good features. These are really good scopes for the money. And now’s the time to buy with massive discounts during this sale. For example the Tenmile 3-18x44mm FFP with MRAD ranging is marked down from $2199.99 to $1475.99 (Save $724). And the Tenmile 5-50x56mm Extreme LR SFP scope is marked down from $2700.99 MSRP to $1810.99 — Save $890!

3. Brownells — KRG Bravo Chassis Rem 700, $329.99 with Code

brownells krg bravo tactical hunting stock internal aluminum precision
Versatile internal frame stock for PRS or hunting — tan, black, or green

The Kinetic Research Group (KRG) Rem 700 Bravo Chassis is a good dual-purpose choice for PRS and hunting. This chassis features an internal aluminum frame with polymer exterior in Flat Dark Earth, Sako Green, or Black. The stock fits Rem 700 and Rem clone actions, accepts AICS-pattern mags, and is M-LOK compatible. The 2.9-lb KRG Bravo chassis features adjustable cheek riser and length-of-pull, built-in thumb shelf, plus quick-detach sling-swivel and bipod mounts. The KRG Bravo stock costs $349.99 at Brownells. You can also get $20 Off with Brownells code VTJ, lowering the net cost to $329.99.

4. Walker’s Electronic Muffs — Alpha or Razor Slim from $39.99

Walker's hearing protection electronic muffs
Comfortable muffs, handy controls, choose 26 NRR or 23 NRR

Walker’s makes some of the best budget-priced electronic muffs you can buy. Choose the 26 NRR Alpha Power model, now $39.99 on sale at MidwayUSA (50% Off), or try the lighter-weight 23 NRR Razor Slim model starting at $36.47, an Amazon best seller. These muffs have earned strong user reviews. One purchaser who also owns the Howard Leight Impact Muffs said the Walkers are far more comfortable: “Walkers: Deep cups with thick pads, does not press down on safety glasses. Comfortable even after 20+ minutes. Howard Leights: Thin pads, difficult to get them to sit right over your ear and eye protection with no air leakage. Uncomfortable on the ear … your ear contacts the felt inside the earmuff[.]”

5. Amazon — Teslong Borescope $45.99 or Rigid Version $69.98

teslong digital borescope
Teslong borescopes are game-changers — true “must-have” tool

The Teslong digital borescope has been a huge success. This compact, electro-optical, cable-type borescope outputs sharp, high-resolution images and VIDEO to desktop computers and laptops, and many tablets. Check out our Full Teslong Review complete with inside-the-barrel videos. Get the basic version for $45.99 on Amazon or the rigid version Teslong Borescope for $69.98 (SEE Rigid Teslong Video). If you scope your barrels often, you’ll probably prefer the rigid version which is easy to insert and rotate.

6. MidwayUSA — Frankford Arsenal Hand Deprimer Tool, $35.99

Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Hand Deprimer Tool
Deprime fired cartridge brass anywhere — no press needed

Decapping brass can be a tedious, time-consuming, and messy chore. Simplify the task (and avoid messing up your reloading area) with the Frankford Arsenal Platinum Series Hand Deprimer Tool. This device lets you remove spent primers anywhere — no press needed and all the mess (cups/anvils/residue) stays in the capture chamber. You can deprime cases while watching TV. This tool features a Universal Collet that works with all case types. With good leverage, this tool is easy on the hands too. Forum members have praised this handy tool.

7. Amazon — MTM Cleaning Rod Case, $19.99

mtm cleaning rod case discount
Good way to transport and store cleaning rods — lowest price ever

Good cleaning rods are expensive and can be easily damaged if you’re not careful. To protect those valuable cleaning rods, we recommend the MTM Cleaning Rod Case which holds four rods as well as cleaning supplies. This $19.99 case protects your rods both at home and while traveling. With this handy, durable case you can stop worrying about bending or breaking those important cleaning rods. This is a good price for a very popular item.

8. Amazon — Long Range Shooting Handbook, $19.85

“Long
Most Popular Practical LR Training Book, Respected Author

Ryan Cleckner’s Long Range Shooting Handbook is the best-selling modern book on practical rifle skills. Ryan Cleckner’s Long Range Shooting Handbook is designed as an intro to important fundamental concepts such as MOA vs. Mils, External Ballistics, and Environmental Effects. Included are personal tips and advice based on Cleckner’s years of experience as a sniper instructor and special operations sniper. You can view Sample Chapters on Amazon.com.

The Long Range Shooting Handbook is divided into three main categories: What It Is/How It Works, Fundamentals, and How to Use It. “What It Is/How It Works” covers equipment, terminology, and basic principles. “Fundamentals” covers the theory of long range shooting. “How to Use It” gives practical advice on implementing what you’ve learned, so you can progress as a skilled, long range shooter.

9. Midsouth — Tumbler Kit Pro with Separator/Sorter, $89.99

midsouth tumbler media separator arsenal tumbler
Ample capacity, great reviews, and good value right now

Keeping your brass clean is one of the best ways to keep your dies (and reloading presses) clean as well. If you’re looking for a new, affordable setup to clean cartridge brass, consider the Frankford Arsenal Quick-N-EZ Case Tumbler Master Kit. You get everything needed to dry-tumble your brass and remove the media. This is all available now for a very low $89.99, including Media and Brass Polish. The Tumbler Kit Pro will handle 600-1000 handgun cases, or 250-450 rifle cases (depending on size). Verified purchaser reviews have all been five stars.

10. Amazon — Howard Leight MAX Earplugs, $8.90/50 Pairs

accurateshooter.com review Max-1 Howard Leight ear plugs

20 Pairs
50 Pairs

Best NRR (33 dB), Very Comfortable, Great Value

These Howard Leight NRR 33 Max Plugs are your Editor’s favorite foam earplugs. Between shooting, motorcycling, and mowing lawns, I probably have Max plugs in my ears 2-3 days a week. This is a very good price for a bulk pack of 50 pairs. NRR 33 is the best Noise Reduction Rating you’ll find for plugs alone. And if you act soon, you can get free shipping to boot.

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December 18th, 2020

NRA Rifles of the Year — Golden Bullseye Winning Rifles for 2021

golden bullseye nra publications

golden bullseye nra publicationsEvery year the NRA Publications group announces Golden Bullseye winners for various product categories (rifle, handgun, shotgun, optics, gear etc.). These awards are like the Oscars for the shooting industry. There are many Golden Bullseyes given out each year because there are separate awards given by different NRA Magazines — including American Rifleman, Shooting Illustrated, and American Hunter. Here are the 2021 Rifles of the Year (Golden Bullseye Winners) as chosen by each of those three publications.

benelli lupo chassis golden bullseye winner rifle

American Rifleman 2021 Golden Bullseye Award Winner

Rifle of the Year — Benelli LUPO

American hunter golden bullseye award springfield waypoint 2020
American hunter golden bullseye award springfield waypoint 2020

The LUPO is Benelli’s first bolt-action rifle (“Lupo” is Italian for “wolf”). This new chassis-style hunting rifle allows for user fitting/customization out of the box. The LUPO design boasts no less than seven exclusive Benelli patents. It offers a built-in recoil reduction system, adjustable trigger plus grip-to-trigger “reach” customizable via receiver/stock spacers. The Airtouch Grip surfaces allow for a firm, comfortable hold on the rifle. The action comes with rails and an ambi-safety. Fort its innovative LUPO Benellit offers a 3-shot sub-MOA guarantee.

American hunter golden bullseye award springfield waypoint 2020

American Hunter 2021 Golden Bullseye Award Winner

Rifle of the Year — Springfield Armory Model 2020 Waypoint

Springfield Armory Waypoint 2020 Hunting Rifle

We’re in the thick of hunting season now, so we’re featuring an impressive new hunting rig from Springfield Armory. The new Model 2020 Waypoint rifles feature advanced carbon-wrapped barrels*, TriggerTech triggers, and carbon-fiber, hand-painted camo stocks. The actions are pretty impressive too — with precision machining, enlarged ejection port, and integral recoil lug. These Waypoint rifles rival full-custom hunting rigs, yet are reasonably affordable. Starting price is $1699.00 with stainless barrel, while the deluxe model with carbon-wrapped barrel and adjustable cheekpiece is still under $2,400.00.

Handsome Hand-Painted Carbon-Fiber Stocks

Springfield Armory Waypoint 2020 Hunting Rifle
Minimum gun weight with carbon-wrapped barrel and fixed cheek is just 6.6 pounds.

golden bullseye shooting illustrated

Shooting Illustrated 2021 Golden Bullseye Award Winner

Rifle of the Year — Savage Axis II Precision

savage axis II precision mdt chassis golden bullseye winner rifle

The Savage AXIS II has has been given a Precision Series upgrade with a MDT Chassis designed for Savage AXIS II platform. The MDT black aluminum chassis features an olive drab injection-molded skin. It has adjustable comb height while length of pull adjusts via spacers. An MLOK™ fore-end allows easy fitting of accessories. This rifle features a black-finished action fitted to 22″ carbon steel, button-rifled heavy barrel with threaded muzzle. The Savage AccuTrigger adjusts from 2.5 to 6 pounds pull-weight.

About the Golden Bullseye Awards
Now in their 19th year, the NRA Publications Golden Bullseye Awards acknowledge the finest products available in the shooting sports. The winners are selected by a seven-member committee consisting of editors, graphic designers and veteran NRA Publications staff, representing more than a century of collective experience in the shooting and hunting industry.

To qualify for consideration for a Golden Bullseye Award, a product must have been:

— Recently introduced and available to consumers.
— Used/tested by a staff member or magazine contributor.
— Reliable in the field, meeting or exceeding the evaluator’s expectations
— Innovative in design and function.
— Readily perceived as a value to the purchaser.
— Styled in a manner befitting the shooting and hunting industry.

“In the uncertain year of 2020, companies with in the firearm industry continued to innovate”, said American Rifleman Editor-in-Chief (EIC) Mark Keefe. American Hunter EIC J. Scott Olmsted added: “Companies in the firearm and outdoor trade industry continued to provide innovation, quality and value to us all. American Hunter is proud to honor these companies’ dedication to our pastime with 2021 Golden Bullseyes.”

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