Firearm Gear Reviews

Vortex Viper PST Riflescope Review

Vortex optics offers a variety of optics for hunters and we have looked at some of their mid-level offerings in the past with the Diamondback series of riflescopes and binoculars. For this review we'll be stepping it up a bit and will be taking a look at the Viper PST line of rifle scopes, specifically the 4-16x50mm with EBR-1 MOA reticle.

The Viper Precision Shooting Tactical (PST) line of scopes packs a lot of features that you would normally find in a tactical or long range shooting optic into a hunting scope.

Remington 700 XCR Tactical Long Range Rifle Review

The Remington 700 by any definition is an American classic. Since its introduction there have been a myriad of variations of the 700 action based rifle and today Remington continues to produce a variety of 700's for hunters and rifle marksmen. For this review, we'll be taking a look at the Remington 700 XCR Tactical Long Range rifle in 300 Win Mag.

Savage Bear Hunter Rifle Review

Savage Firearms released a new version of its 16/116 model bolt action rifle this year called the Bear Hunter. Since we have favorably reviewed Savage guns in the past we thought we would take a look at this new offering for 2011. A few years ago we reviewed the Savage Weather Warrior with favorable results and the new Bear Hunter appears to be along the same lines as the Weather Warrior series.

Cooper Firearms Model 54 Jackson Hunter Review

The firearms market of the 21st century has powerful manufacturers that got their start in the latter part of the 19th century. A lot has changed in firearm designs and manufacturing in this time, but the desire for superb accuracy still reigns as important today as it did in years gone by. Cooper Firearms of Montana, while a relatively young company, understands shooters desire for accuracy and since 1990 has built their company around producing highly accurate and aesthetically pleasing rifles.

Leupold Mark 4 Riflescope Review

Over the last few years the interest in higher power scopes with more durability has increased among hunters. Some hunters look to these scopes to improve visual clarity at longer ranges in order to increase the range at which they can consistently make a kill shot, while others want a more rugged scope that can take a few bumps and scrapes. For decades Leupold has developed their line of tactical Mark 4 scopes that offer both a rugged scope and optical superiority. For this review we'll be taking a look a the Mark 4 lineup of scopes along with a closer look at a Mark 4 LR/T 4.5-14x50mm Illuminated Mil-Dot scope.

Mossberg 4x4 Bolt Action Rifle Review

O.F. Mossberg and Sons, or simply Mossberg for short, is perhaps best known for their line of shotguns. The Mossberg 500 pump action shotgun, and shotguns derived from the 500, have reliably served hunters and the military since the 1960's. However Mossberg is more than just shotguns and in recent years has moved aggressively into the bolt action centerfire rifle market. For this review we will be taking a look at the 4x4 bolt-action rifle.

Otis Hardcore Hunter Cleaning System Review

It's not hard to round up a group of shooters to blast an afternoon away plinking. However given the same group, it can be expected that there will be few volunteers to spend any time cleaning up the firearms after the shooting and excitement is over. None-the-less, firearm cleaning is a critical part of firearm ownership and while boring, is necessary. The gun cleaning situation is compounded for hunters on the move; who wants to clean a gun after packing it around all day?

Nikon M-223 3-12X42 Riflescope Review
If you talk to an AR shooter, one of the first benefits that they will likely tout is that of all the cool AR-specific accessories that can be attached to the firearm. Some necessary, some novelty, but none more important than a quality scope. Nikon, long known for building quality optics for hunting has embraced the AR market with open arms and designed a riflescope, the M-223, specifically around the most popular AR cartridge, the .223 Rem./5.56mm NATO. With AR rifles being built for short and long range use, Nikon followed suit with a current offering of six different M-223 models to meet the consumers needs.
Browning X-Bolt Stainless Stalker Review

Browning has been producing bolt action center fire rifles since the introduction of the BBR in 1978. The BBR carried through until 1984 when it was replaced with the A-Bolt. Today the A-Bolt is still in production, but in 2008 Browning introduced its new X-Bolt line of hunting rifles.

The X-Bolt lineup has steadily been growing since its introduction and we decided to take a look at the Stainless Stalker variation in 270WSM. The Stainless Stalker is offered in three different action lengths and a variety of cartridges.

Benelli MR1 Review: An Italian Coyote Rifle

Italian firearms aren't anything new, some of the finest guns made originate from the land that gave us spaghetti. The US Marine's combat shotgun for more than a decade has been the semi-auto Benelli M4 (military name - M1014). Its reputation has been built on their ultra-reliable ARGO (Auto Regulating Gas Operated) system. That same gas system has now been adapted into a semi-auto rifle in 223 Remington and I've been successfully hunting coyotes with one. For this review, we're going to take a look at the Benelli MR1 rifle.

Winchester Model 70 Super Grade Review - Part 2
A few weeks ago we reviewed the Winchester Model 70 Featherweight in detail, in the first of our two part series looking at the "Rifleman's Rifle." The Featherweight is Winchester's least expensive wood stocked gun and for this second part we will be taking a closer look at the Super Grade, currently Winchester's most expensive rifle with a wood stock.
Winchester Model 70 Featherweight Review - Part 1

The Winchester brand has long been associated with the North American hunter. Since its original introduction in 1936, the "Rifleman's Rifle" has regularly made the short list of top firearms. There have been literally dozens (if not hundreds) of reviews of the Model 70 since its introduction, so what at BigGameHunt could we add that hasn't been said before? We thought we would take a two part up-close look at two current production Winchester Model 70's, first the standard Featherweight, and in part two the Super Grade.

Stag Arms Model 6 Super Varminter Rifle Review

When I had the opportunity to visit the Stag Arms manufacturing facility in New Britain, Connecticut last year to film a television show featuring the company and their line of AR-style rifles, I wasn't sure what to expect. They were a relatively new brand (introduced in 2003), and I knew little about them other than they had taken the market by storm with their left-handed AR rifle. What I found was pleasantly surprising. The manufacturing process was efficient and quality control and pride in the finished product seemed to be at the nucleus of the entire operation.

Thompson Center Venture Rifle Review

Thompson Center (T/C) has been known since the late 60's and 70's for their Contender single shot hunting handgun and their line of higher end traditional and modern muzzleloaders. From the start, T/C has been about blackpowder and single shot pistol and rifle hunting. Given this 40+ year background it was surprising when T/C brought out their first bolt action rifle, the Icon, a few years ago. We were excited to take a look at the new T/C Venture when it started shipping late last year.

Thompson Center ICON Review

Ever since Thompson Center Arms introduced the ICON rifle, I've been intrigued by their claims. After all, it's not every year that a manufacturer introduces a completely new rifle design; typically, we just see minor variations of existing designs. However, with the ICON, the guys at TC claim they started with a clean sheet of paper, trying to incorporate everything we currently know about rifle reliability and accuracy, which could be squeezed into a price point available to the average gun owner.

Savage Edge Rifle Review
The last few years has seen growth in the entry level rifle market. The Marlin XL7, Mossberg ATR and 4x4 rifles, T/C Venture join rifles that have been around for awhile like the Weatherby Vanguard, the Remington 710/770, and the Stevens 200 that we recently reviewed. Just shortly after reviewing the Stevens 200, Savage released a new entry level rifle called the Edge.
Swarovski Z5 Rifle Scope Review
Mention the name Swarovski to most hunters and they immediately think of quality. Over the past two decades I've been able to experiment with most major manufacturer's optics for one application or another. My conclusion - you don't always get what you pay for... but, thankfully sometimes you do. Such is the case with my latest acquisition - Swarovski Optik's Z5 5-25x52 P BT L rifle scope. The letters simply refer to the ballistic turret, a recent innovation introduced to facilitate long-range shooting.
Stevens 200 Rifle Review
At the most basic level firearms are a tool. This message is sometimes lost in the wide array of situations that firearms are discussed and used. Sometimes you don't need a lot of frills when making a new tool purchase, you just need the tool to do exactly what it is supposed to do, even better if you can save some money in the process. If this description fits your hunting rifle needs, the Stevens 200 won't disappoint.
IMR 8208 XBR Powder Review
IMR and Hodgdon have introduced a new powder especially for the 223 and 308, which due to its consistency will produce exceptional accuracy. Chris Hodgdon from the Hodgdon powder company was kind enough to send me a sample for testing and evaluation. The new powder was made available and started shipping in January 2010. The Hodgdon Powder Company owns IMR powders and produces their line. For this review we are going to test the new IMR 8208 XBR powder.
Nikon Monarch Rifle Scope Review
Nikon has been in the optics market for a long time, and is best known for their camera and non-hunting optics business. However over the last decade, Nikon has been progressively making a push into the hunting and sporting optics market. Today, Nikon manufactures a variety of binoculars, spotting scopes, rangefinders, and rifle scopes specifically for the hunting market. Chances are good that you or a hunter you know has tried out one of Nikon's products. For this review we are going to take a look at the Monarch series of rifle scopes.