Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Today's Black Rifle

I have shot rifles since I was old enough to sit in my father’s lap and shoot at jackrabbits out the pickup window. I killed my first deer at six years old and roamed the countryside with a small caliber rifle as a youngster. My first deer rifle was a bolt action Remington model 700 in .243 that I still shoot today. It is one of my go-to rifles for most occasions. In the last 15 years or so I really got into small caliber fast cartridges. My love for these started way before that with a 22 Magnum and later a .222. After the Viet Nam Era I got into shooting the .223 or 5.56mm cartridge in bolt action rifles. I had some friends that shot the AR-15 platforms or civilian version of the M-16 combat rifle. I finally broke down and bought one but was unimpressed. It would spit out rounds as fast as you pulled the trigger but was not an accurate rifle. I sold it and moved on with my accurate bolt action .223. About 10 years ago on a prairie dog hunting trip another friend pulled out his new black rifle. It looked kind of like my old AR-15 but had a flat top with solid rings and a scope. The barrel was a 22 inch hunk of stainless steel in a bull barrel configuration. The thing that really got my attention was that this gun could shoot right with the best of the bolt actions along on the trip. I had to have one and began to research the current offerings. I found that the AR-15 platform was now being used to build all sorts of rifles in many calibers. There were many companies and custom gunsmiths that were building these rifles for the public. I settled on a varmint rifle with 22 inch heavy barrel in .223 made by Bushmaster and have not been disappointed in any way. The only gripe I have is in this configuration, it is a heavy rifle and hard to carry on predator calling stands where I walk a long ways to call. The accuracy of this rifle is simply amazing and it will shoot with the best of the bolt actions. I am now looking to find a lightweight calling rifle that is not so heavy but still allows rapid follow up shots without having to bolt the action or lift my head from the scope. I think I have found what I want and can not wait for the rifle to become available to the general public. Remington Firearms is going to release their first AR platform rifle this spring. It will be available in a rifle or carbine form in full camo and come in two varmint calibers. The standard .223 will be available along with the fast Ruger .204. This rifle should be the answer to many varmint hunters and others that like the small fast calibers in a semi auto version that will also shoot accurately. If you have not yet tried a so called black rifle in today’s formats you are really missing out on some of the best of the best. It also comes in camo which may just make it more acceptable to today’s hunter. Once you shoot one you too will become an aficionado.
Good Shooting, Wild Ed

Here is the information on the new Remington R-15 with retail of $999.00

Model R-15 VTR™ Features
New semi-automatic AR-15-style rifle developed with the predator hunter in mind
Free-floating button-rifled 0.680" Muzzle OD ChroMoly barrels with recessed hunting crown for superior accuracy
Fluted barrel design reduces weight and promotes rapid barrel cooling
Clean-breaking single-stage hunting trigger
Receiver-length Picatinny rail for adding optics
Ergonomic pistol grip
Fore-end tube drilled and tapped for accessory rails
Full Advantage® MAX-1 HD™ coverage
Includes 5-round magazineLegal for hunting in most states
Compatible with aftermarket AR-15 magazines
Lockable hard case included

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