It's been a busy
fall season, examining and reviewing firearms produced by numerous manufacturers.
It appears that the quality of fit and finish, design
and performance of the firearms are at an all time high. After fifty-seven years of
pulling triggers and burning up ammunition it's good to see
excellence in engineering and customer sensitive marketing leading
Throughout the time
I've spent shooting and hunting literally hundreds of Remington
firearms, it has been without incidence, mishap or mechanical
failure of any type with one exception. A well worn Model 700
chambered for the 7mm Remington Magnum saw service in very harsh
weather conditions. It wasn't cleaned properly and ended up requiring
chamber polishing... a service Remington provided, free of charge.
Not bad service on a fifteen year old rifle.
During all of the
time I've spent shooting and hunting, I've experienced one accidental
discharge with one rifle, a Marlin 336 saddle carbine. I was hunting
with a buddy of mine, lost an opportunity to take a shot at a deer,
sat down on a tree stump and proceeded to place the Marlin in half
cock safe mode. Unfortunately, I got my fingers and thumb tangled
up, the hammer dropped on a loaded round and the gun discharged.
That was an... invigorating experience! Fortunately, even at the age
of fourteen, as a person who read instruction manuals, who had
completed the Hunter's Safety Course and remains the son of a WWII
combat Marine, I knew the importance of obeying the rules of
safe firearm handling. The gun's muzzle was not pointed in the
direction of anyone and bullet ended up, harmlessly, in the ground a
few feet away. Of course I became the brunt of jokes for the rest of
the season... and perhaps a few more that followed.
analysis of the technical properties of the Marlin's trigger and
safety system, I came to the amazing discovery that the problem
resided with me. The hammer had gotten away from me, which was an
incredibly careless thing for me to let happen. Teenage lack of
coordination? Loss of concentration? That was fifty years ago and
the incident left such an impression on me that I can remember every
detail of the event, right down to how the cold wind felt blowing
across my embarrassed red face.
In reading through
some of the Remington litigation Internet pile-on, the litany of
agenda-bent, maligning statements, it seems as though these folks choose
to completely ignore the repeated substantiation, by both plaintiff
and defense, that no one, NO ONE, has ever been able
to replicate a Remington discharging under any of the theorized
circumstances, or even the under staged circumstances where the
firearm wouldn't qualify
as severely abused or egregiously modified.
Today, I am honored to be
reviewing the current Remington Model 700 XCR, a fine example of
American product ingenuity and business enterprise. I sincerely hope
that the collection of "bloggers" who operate with pack mentality
and gauge their success by what they can destroy, rather than what
they can create, will find something else to wag their tongues
about. I'd like to be afforded the opportunity of selecting and
shooting firearms of my choice, the guns I've determined safe and
appropriate for my personal applications, rather than those deemed
worthy by ambulance chasing lawyers who manipulate family grief and
much of the liberal press.
A gun defined and
North American hunting...
The Model 700, the
model core to this series, has been in continual production since
1962, building to an installed base in excess of five million rifles.
While there have been numerous running changes to the design, and
the model has been presented in many application variations and aesthetic themes, the
700 type rifle
has essentially retained its original form, fit and function. The
Remington Model 700 distinguishes itself from other models,
Remington and competitors' products with its "Three rings of steel"
encasement of a cartridge case head. The gun's recessed bolt face
locks up inside the counter-bored breech of the barrel and the
breech of the barrel is surrounded by the steel ring of the
receiver. A very strong assembly and one that lends itself to a high
degree of accuracy.
Model 700 XCR II TN
Remington Arms Company, Inc.
Model 700 XCR II TN
Overmolded Grip Areas -
Coated Stainless Steel
*6 lbs 7 oz.
X-Mark Pro Adjustable
Pull As Received
*4 lbs. 10 oz.
Pull As Tested
3 lbs. 2 oz.
Retail $773 Member's
* Actual weights
This particular Model 700, the XCR II TN,
distinguishes itself from other Model 700 rifles in a number of
ways. As noted by the TN designation, the rifle's stainless
steel hardware is protected with Remington's TriNyte® corrosion
TriNyte®, electroless nickel applied with a
proprietary physical vapor deposition process. The coating is
described by Remington as a fractional thickness of a human hair
This treatment has
been applied to a number of recent Remington firearm releases and,
something I'm glad to see. The coating is both highly abrasion and
harsh element resistant; it is easy to clean and it makes for an
attractive looking forearm.
The XCR II TN is
light, even though it has a longer than typical 24" barrel to
produce optimal ballistics for the .30-06 Springfield cartridge.
This example checked in at a very balanced 6 lbs 7 ounces. While the
barrel seems to have a traditional taper and full 0.659" muzzle
diameter, rather than something more drastic to achieve lighter
weight, the stock is lighter than walnut or laminated and the bottom
metal and hinged floorplate assembly are made of finely finished
follower is steel. The combination gives the gun a comfortable...
familiar heft while cutting approximately a pound and one half from
the gun's weight in comparison to a Model 700 BDL.
I am glad to see the
X-Mark Pro trigger carried over to the XCR II. The feel is crisp,
clean and it is nice to have an adjustable trigger incorporated into
a mass produced factory rifle. I cranked the pull down to just above
3 lbs for testing. For field use I would have adjusted it to about 4˝
lbs. The XCR II is fitted with one of Remington's Super Cell
recoil pads. A very comfortable, no drag pad with exceptional recoil
I have to thank
Remington, on behalf of me and the rest of the near pabulum eating age
throwbacks, who might forget what brand firearm we've purchased if
not for the product embedded logos that provide a constant reminder. Friendly jab
at Remington's tastefully done product marking. I'm onboard as long as they don't
raise white letter the big "R" on the grip cap.
Those inset grip
panels are ideal for this gun's purpose. Nice soft surface in place of
cheese grater-like checkering and the material actually has a warm
feel. In fact, with temps dropping to near 20°F,
I was temped to stand outside all night to see if my hands stuck to the
grips. No,,, not really.
The .30-06 Springfield.
The World's most useful cartridge...
short cartridge and "all things metric" bias, the laws of physics, a
broad selection of reloading components and modest cost of ammunition
favor the venerable .30-06 Springfield. From coyote to bear, from elk to
moose, and anything else a hunter would find roaming the North America
landscape, there is an appropriate .30-06 Springfield ammunition
|.300 Remington UM
Nosler Trophy Grade
Current average prices - discount retail
In comparison to the .308 Winchester, the .30-06
Springfield advantage is perhaps only 5%, but it comes without cost
penalty. The Ultra Mag boomer has substantially more performance, but it
comes with a hefty additional cost, perhaps best reserved for more
The Remington Model 700 Model 700 XCR II TN, as noted
earlier in text, has a longer than typical .30-06 Springfield length
barrel. It matters. A couple of inches of barrel length enhances the
performance differential between it and the .308 Winchester and the
effects of handloading with relatively slow powder.
Seven bullets were selected for the handload portion
of this project, 130 grains to 190 grains. There are lighter and there
are heavier weights available, but these seemed to represent the most
useful for hunting and they represent a good cross section of cost and
Putting the rest of the pieces on...
There wasn't much to do to get the Model
700 ready to go. I ran a patch through the bore, cleaned off the trigger
and bolt assembly and put back on a drop of gun oil on contact surfaces.
I started to install a Weaver Super Slam with low Warne mounts, but
there was insufficient bolt clearance. So I bumped up to a Bushnell's
Elite 6500 4.5-30 x 50mm with Warne steel bases and medium height rings
with the thought I would shoot out to two hundred yards during live fire
check out. I'll take a break here to assemble some test lots of ammo. Be
back soon with Part II.
Remington's Model 700 XCR II TN Part I
Remington’s Model 700 XCR II TN Part II