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GUNS Magazine October 2010 - Page 12
RANGING SHOTS • CLINT SMITH • A very special .308 Winchester rifle. he United States Federal Bureau of Investigation has a long T history of defending this country from enemies foreign and domestic. Like everyone and every agency, they have passed GA pRECiSion’S FBi HRT through days filled with glory and other days that can pass none too soon. Although it might be considered a small part of their work, some tasks require firearms to be a part of the tools of their trade. Historically, the types of people the FBI has to deal with—as in the 1986 Miami shooting—requires agents be able and willing to use firearms in the performance of their duties. Today, while expending significant energy on high-tech criminal opponents, the FBI still steps up to the plate and accepts responsibilities for other types of situations often addressed by the military in other countries worldwide. These missions, roles or tasks may be arguably better suited—at least at first appearance— to the military but you gotta love America. We still remember the King was here, so we try to not have the military running around “fixing” broken stuff inside America proper— another arguable point for some. All opinions aside, let us just say if there is a hostage thing similar to the Munich Olympic gig or the Iranian Princes Gate deal, there is a strong chance the FBI will show up probably dressed in the form of the Hostage Rescue Team. thegaPrecisionFBIHRtriflewas firedoutto700yardsattherange. The FBI Hostage Rescue Team, founded in the early 1980s, still serves today as a domestic response and resolution answer to terrorism in the form of hostage or high-risk situations. With the current ongoing war on terror, individual agents, who also often deploy overseas using skills helpful to other US units, allow them to gain additional personal skills. Highly trained and cross-trained, the group has historically had access to a broad selection of state-of-the-art weapons to draw from and use over the years. I recently had the opportunity to access and shoot one of the newest weapons in the HRT arsenal. I was not surprised at all when the FBI considered and then accepted the GA Precision rifle into the sniper role for HRT. Having personally used GA Precision rifles for a number of years, I can attest this choice will prove to be a good one. The HRT rifle was built on the Templar short action with a 1-piece fluted bolt. On top of the action, additional 20 minute-of-angle elevation bases in the form of a 1913 Picatinny rail are in place. The pipe is a No. 5 stainless steel 22" long Bartlein barrel with cut rifling of 1:11.2" theactionofthegaPrifleshowingenlarged, flutedbolt,detachablemagazineandpistol gripstock.OntopsitstheSchmidt&Bender 4-16x50PMIIMilDotscope.theriflecomes withaHarrisBipod. twist that translates into a medium weight barrel chambered for the .308 Winchester. The end of the barrel has the SureFire 7.62 Suppressor mount system with adaptor and brake all in one package. The rifle is pillar bedded in an olive-drab-colored McMillan A3-5 stock equipped with an adjustable cheekpiece and spacer systems for setting the length of pull for the individual shooter. Additionally, the stock is set up for the Harris bipod and four flush cups for the use of a TAB sling. The front end of the stock wears a Badger EFR mount for the PVS22 or 27-night vision system. The rifle has the Badger Ordnance M-5 detachable magazine system capable of using 5- or 10-round magazines. The rifle scope is the outstanding Schmidt Bender 4-16x50 glass with an illuminated Mil Dot reticle set up to adjust with centimeter increments. The Range To the point, the rifle performed as GAP rifles always do. After the initial zero at our 5,000'-plus elevation, the rifle was shot from prone to 700 yards on steel targets with no effort using both the .308 Federal 168-grain Match and a small amount of the new Hornady 178-grain BTHP Match Superformance ammunition, which also shot very well. The rifle shot less than one MOA in my applications with both types of ammo. The Hornady 178-grain did not require as much elevation down range. I did not have 12 WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM • OCTOBER 2010