Wolfe Publishing Group

    Rifle March/April 2017

    On the Cover: The Browning X-Bolt Hell’s Canyon Speed 7mm Remington Magnum features a Leupold VX-3i 3.5-10x 40mm scope. Photo by Chris Downs.

    Volume 49, Number 2 | ISSN:

    Article Bites


    Spotting Scope

    Muzzle Brakes
    column by: Dave Scovill

    Upon receiving an invite to hunt desert mule deer in Sonora, Mexico, a few days before Christmas, the first question that came to mind was whether or not the Mexican authorities would have enough time during the coming holidays to process the paper work required to take a rifle south of the border. Since the chance of acquiring a “permission” paper at such a time would be doubtful, I asked about a “camp” rifle. As luck would have it, two rifles would be available at the ranch, a Winchester Model 70 .300 Winchester Magnum and a Tikka .300 Winchester Short Magnum. Both rifles were quite acceptable – although a bit much for deer-sized game – assuming there would be an opportunity to shoot them prior to hunting, and arrangements were made for the hunt. ...Read More >


    Lock, Stock and Barrel

    Ruger Rotary Magazine Bolt Rifles Discontinued
    column by: Lee J. Hoots

    Discouraging news is, well, discouraging. Sometimes it spreads quickly; other times it travels as slowly as its bearers want it to. Due to the often misguided and twisted “information” provided, among countless other reasons, I have mostly tried to ignore the goings-on of the Internet so unfortunately missed Ruger’s soft announcement sent out in mid-September via an e-mail list: All bolt-action rifles (rimfire and centerfire) that utilize the company’s well-liked rotary magazine have been temporarily discontinued. ...Read More >


    Mostly Long Guns

    The Classic Weatherby Vanguard
    column by: Brian Pearce

    Weatherby began importing the Vanguard rifle in 1970. It was based on the Howa Model 1500 (manufactured in Japan) but with specified upgrades that were both cosmetic and mechanical. The Vanguard shared similar stock dimensions and high-gloss finish with the Mark V rifle, but it was offered in standard cartridges that ranged from the .243 Winchester to .300 Winchester Magnum, and it was offered at a notably lower price. In the 47 years since its inception, the Vanguard has been improved in function, design, accuracy and is currently offered for several Weatherby Magnum cartridges and many other sporting rounds. ...Read More >


    Down Range

    column by: Mike Venturino

    Many shooters fuss about their rifles’ triggers as shipped from factories in this time of lawsuit awareness. In my opinion, however, a worse detriment to precision shooting is an ill-designed rifle buttplate. I can master a stiff trigger, but I cannot make my body ignore pain. All shooters will eventually begin to flinch off shots due to recoil, although some people certainly handle it to a greater extent than others. ...Read More >


    Light Gunsmithing

    Removing Recalcitrant Pins and Screws
    column by: Gil Sengel

    Firearms are nothing more than machines designed to store, feed and discharge ammunition. As with any machine, guns are made up of individual parts and subassemblies held together by pins, screws and spring clips. ...Read More >


    A Rifleman's Optics

    Low Light Binocular Testing
    column by: John Haviland

    A lot of hunters are concerned about the need for riflescopes that enable them to see game in low light; however, a half-hour before sunrise and after sunset are the earliest and latest legal shooting hours in most states, and about any scope provides a bright enough view to plainly see big game in that light. But there is no law against using a binocular to look for game in the weak light before and after legal hunting hours. ...Read More >


    Walnut Hill

    Sniping as an Evolving Skill
    column by: Terry Wieland

    The first documented use of the term “sniper” to describe a lone rifleman, picking off the enemy at long range with carefully aimed shots, occurred in a dispatch by the young Winston Churchill in 1897 describing military actions in Malakand, near the Khyber Pass. Churchill, a lieutenant in the 4th Queen’s Own Hussars, was on leave from his regiment to cover the war for the Daily Telegraph. In his dispatches, he described the actions of enemy tribesmen who hid themselves on steep hillsides and “sniped” at the columns of British soldiers. ...Read More >


    Al Biesen .270 Winchester

    Not Just Another Custom Mauser
    feature by: Terry Wieland

    Since 1945, tens of thousands of Mauser 98s have been sporterized, customized and otherwise turned into hunting rifles in America. The term “custom” is a vague appellation that can refer to any alteration carried out by anyone, regardless of skill. These range in quality from utilitarian conversions by a guy in a garage to superb examples of the gunmaker’s art. ...Read More >


    Browning X-Bolt Hell's Canyon Speed

    Testing a 7mm Remington Magnum in the Elk Woods
    feature by: John Haviland

    Since Browning introduced its X-Bolt in 2008, the bolt action has become the company’s flagship rifle with 29 current variations listed in its catalog. The Hell’s Canyon Speed is one of the newest X-Bolt rifles and was named after Hell’s Canyon on the border of eastern Oregon and western Idaho to imply rugged and tough hunting conditions and play off its apparel line of the same name. The Speed is a pure hunting rifle chambered in 11 cartridges from .243 Winchester and 6.5 Creedmoor to the .26 Nosler and .300 Winchester Magnum. ...Read More >


    Reboring Rifle Barrels

    An Overlooked Option for Tired Lands and Grooves
    feature by: John Barsness

    Rifled barrels appeared in what is now named Germany in the early 1500s. The first rifling was straight, apparently designed to accommodate black-powder fouling, so barrels could be fired more times without cleaning. Soon shooters discovered that spiral grooves increased accuracy by spinning bullets through the air. ...Read More >


    .33 Nosler

    An Early Look at the Newest .338
    feature by: Brian Pearce

    In 2014 Nosler introduced the flat-shooting .26 Nosler, following it up in 2015 with the .28 Nosler (7mm) that was based on the .26 case but necked accordingly. In 2016 the .30 Nosler was announced, and the latest cartridge to join the Nosler line is the .33 Nosler. It is purely a big-game hunting cartridge that utilizes .338-inch bullets. Like other Nosler cartridges, the case is based loosely on the beltless .404 Jeffery case, which offers magnum capacity and performance. The Nosler case, however, is strengthened, and like other Nosler cartridges, it is designed with an overall length that allows it to function in standard .30-06 length actions. ...Read More >


    Cooper Model 92 Backcountry

    A New Lightweight .30-06 from Montana
    feature by: Stan Trzoniec

    With tighter restrictions in some areas, and the lack of open space in others, some hunters are being forced to find their game elsewhere. Longer treks require lighter rifles, and to this end, Cooper Firearms has introduced its new Model 92 Backcountry bolt rifle. Checking in under six pounds without a scope, rings or ammunition, this rifle has all the features that shave it to the bone in overall weight. ...Read More >


    Product Tests

    Monatana X-treme Gun Cleaning Products
    whatsnew by: Charles E. Petty

    It isn’t exactly a secret that guns are cleaned at Charlie’s house only when they really need it, and generally that’s not too often. The notion that a firearm must be cleaned every time you shoot it was doubtless proposed and endorsed by those who sell such products. ...Read More >

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