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Rifle roundup: right on target.

They come in all shapes, sizes, and varieties of action -- Rifles. Whether you're making a sale to a hunter, target shooter, collector, or the ever-present "plinker," every gun owner buys a rifle from time to time, and that rifle purchase is different from every other type of gun.

Customers who buy a handgun seem to have a hard time justifying an expensive price tag for such a "small" item. Shotgun customers sometimes feel that, since a shotgun only shoots a short distance, it shouldn't cost too much. The rifle buyer, however, always wants the best rifle he or she can possibly afford.

There's one other requirement most rifle buyers have: They want their new rifle to be the most accurate, state-of-the-art, high-tech piece of firepower you have in the store. Unless you know what's new on the market, you may find those customers going elsewhere.

In order to keep you up to date, here's Shooting Industry's overview of the rifle market -- the products, the accessories, and the equipment your customers want.

Full Line Manufacturers

Browning

For over 25 years the Browning BAR has established a reputation for dependable operation and attention to detail that no other centerfire, semiautomatic rifle has achieved. For the rifle's 25th anniversary, Browning has introduced the BAR Safari Mark II version, with a handsomely engraved receiver, greater ease of operation with a newly designed bolt release, and improved performance from a new gas system. The rifle is available in calibers ranging from .243 Winchester to .338 Win. Mag.

Browning also continues to offer its popular A-Bolt Stalker, including the well-received Stainless Stalker version with stainless steel barrel and receiver and synthetic stock, and the new Euro-Bolt version with a Schnabel-style forend and a rounded bolt shroud.

Marlin Firearms

When you think of Marlin this year, think .22 caliber. Marlin offers two new self-loading rifles chambered in .22 LR and .22 WRM to give your customers more power for varmint hunting and more all-out shooting satisfaction on the range or the plinking field.

The new gun in Marlin's line is the 922 Magnum, chambered in the most powerful American rimfire cartridge, the .22 WRM. This rifle features a seven-shot detachable magazine and a Monte Carlo-style stock made of American black walnut with a rubber recoil pad and swivel studs. This enjoyable rifle is sure to please any customer who wants fast-shooting power for either target or varmint shooting.

Also new this year is 883SS, an all-stainless version of Marlin's ever-popular bolt-action 883 chambered in .22 WRM. With a 12-round tube magazine, this gun won't let your customers down.

A new stainless version of the Model 60 .22 LR is also available, dubbed the 60SS. With a 14-shot tubular magazine, this rifle is ready for fun.

Of course, Marlin continues to offer the full selection of bolt-action, lever action, and semiautomatic rifles for which the company is famous, including the big game-getting Model 30AS, the Model 1984, and acclaimed Camp Carbine. With the largest manufacturer of rifles in the world behind you, your customers are sure to find what they want.

Remington

The first rifle most shooters pick up has the name Remington stamped on the barrel, and shooters around the world have come to look toward "Big Green" to provide the rifles they want for all types of shooting.

New this year in the Remington line-up is the Viper, a high-tech, low-cost semiautomatic .22 rifle which is perfect for the beginning shooter, the younger shooter, and any customer who enjoys spending a day on the range. Designed to make first time shooter's experience as pleasant as possible, the Viper offers several safety features, including a cocking indicator, a last-shot hold open to indicate when the rifle is empty, and a magazine safety. The Viper also comes with an integral scope-mounting rail.

Also new this year are three new versions of the Model 700, the best-selling centerfire rifle in America. The 700VS is now chambered in the legendary .220 Swift, the highest-velocity cartridge on the market. The Model 700 Classic is available in .222 Remington for shooters who are obsessed with accuracy. The Model Seven is a shortened version with real bolt-action strength for a younger market, available in three short-action calibers.

Remington is also offering an extra incentive with the 7400 and 7600 SP rifles. When customers purchase one of these guns, they get an airline-quality hard case free -- a $50 value.

Savage Arms

Classic style and collectability are the focus of the rifles from Savage. The new Model 114 Classic Ultra bolt-action rifle features a straight stock made of beautiful black walnut with a removable box magazine. Caliber choices range from .270 to .300 Win. Mag.

For varminters, the Savage 112 bolt action remains a top choice with a new single-shot version available this year for added strength and accuracy. Big game hunters have always looked toward the Model 116 to provide the hard-hitting power needed on a once-in-a-lifetime hunt.

Also available from Savage is the Model 99 lever-action rifle in .243 and .308 Winchester calibers.

Sturm, Ruger & Co.

Ruger continues to be one of the leaders in American firearms manufacturing, featuring all types of firearms. This year, Ruger provides long-range rifle shooters with the 77/22 Varmint Rifle, a .22 WRM, stainless steel, bolt-action rifle with a heavy target barrel and a durable laminated stock. Meant for long-range varmint hunting, this rifle comes complete with scope rings.

Of course, Ruger continues to offer a highly successful line of rifles, including the Mini-14 and the Mini-Thirty, two of the most enjoyable, fast-action rifles left on the market; the 10/22, one of the most popular and (with the dozens of aftermarket accessories available) adaptable rimfire rifles you'll ever have on your shelf; and the Ruger No. 1, a single-shot rifle perfect for precision target shooting or big-game hunting, available in calibers from .218 Bee to .458 Win. Mag.

Weatherby

Leading the way in value is the new Mark V Sporter from Weatherby. Not since the early 1980s has Weatherby offered a Mark V rifle at a price comparable with today's most popular rifles.

With the acclaimed Mark V bolt action, the Sporter features a Monte Carlo walnut stock, a 1-inch recoil pad, a high-gloss finish, and a low-lustre finish on all metal surfaces.

Of course, Weatherby continues to market all of the other Mark V rifles your customers have come to love over the years: the Deluxe, the Lazermark, the Varmintmaster, the Classicmark, the Safari Classic, and many others. American quality of this type gives your customers a rifle they'll be proud to own.

Winchester/USRAC

Hunters will be delighted with the new offerings from USRAC, beginning with the new Super Express Model 70. With USRAC's famous controlled-round feeding and claw extractor, hunters can expect this new Model 70 to feed reliably from any angle -- even upside down. The Super Express is designed for the force of big game cartridges with a 1-inch thick recoil pad and two cross bolts to distribute the recoil force along the stock. The Super Express Model 70 is available in .375 H&H and .458 Win. Mag.

For customers who are looking for the reliability of stainless steel mated with a synthetic stock, the Model 70 now comes with a heavy varmint barrel in the Heavy Varmint version, chambered in .223 Remington, .22-250 Remington, .243 Winchester, and .308 Winchester. The same rifle also comes with a detachable box magazine in the DBM-S version, with caliber choices from .223 Remington to .300 Win. Mag.

Winchester's tradition continues in the Model 94 lever-action rifle, with a Trapper version available with 20- and 16-inch barrels. The 94 Wrangler provides the same action and good looks with an oversized loop lever -- perfect for use with gloves in those late-season hunts.

Specialty Rifle Manufacturers

Arcadia Machine & Tool

From the folks at AMT comes the Hunting Rifle, a semi-auto .22 WRM that is perfect for the range or the field. The match-grade, free-floating barrel assures accuracy, and the stainless-steel construction makes this a perfect gun for the novice as well as the old-time varmint hunter. The sturdy synthetic stock assures reliability even in the worst weather.

Colt's Manufacturing

The Colt AR-15 Sporter is back and going stronger than even with a new model, the Sporter Lightweight. The small forend and top handgrip make this an easy-toting rifle. The Sporter Lightweight also has one other new advantage: a larger caliber. For your customers who want the excitement of a Colt on their deer hunt, the Sporter Lightweight is chambered in 7.62x39 mm, one of the most popular game cartridges on the market today.

Your customers just can't get a better hunting companion than the new hard-hitting Sporter.

Eagle Arms

Eagle Arms is proud to offer its own semi-automatic version of the famous M-16 rifle used by the military, designated the EA-15. This line of rifles is perfect for every sport from varmint hunting to long-range target shooting. Available in seven different versions, the entire EA-15 line features upper and lower receivers milled from T6 aluminum with Hard Coat Anodize to make them wear resistant.

If your customers are looking for action, the Eagles are ready.

Lakefield Arms

Some guns are made for pure enjoyment -- like the Lakefield series of .22 caliber bolt-action rifles. From the Mark I single-shot, bolt-action rifle to the Mark II and Mark II Youth removeable magazine bolt-action guns, all of Lakefield's products are made to perform flawlessly in the field or on the range.

Lakefield also offers the 64B, one of the finest values in semiautomatic .22 rifles on the market today. With a 10-shot removable magazine, this gun will provide hours of fun.

Olympic Arms

A wide selection of AR-15-style semi-automatic rifles are available to your customers from Olympic Arms. Whether the goal is target shooting, hunting, plinking, or police work, Olympic has the right rifle for the job. Individual parts -- receivers, barrels, and others -- are available; all rifles are also sold in kit form.

Replica Rifle Manufacturers

Auto Ordnance

Collectors and plain ol' good-time shooters alike will love the authenticity and action of Auto-Ordnance's line of Thompson submachine gun replicas. Available with standard and pistol-grip forend, and 20-round single-stack or classic drum magazines, these guns will light up your customers' eyes and put the fun back in shooting.

The Thompson is also available in .22 LR -- the perfect rifle for all-day shooting.

Cimarron Arms

Your collector customers already know Cimarron Arms for an extensive selection of Italian-made, Old West-style replica revolvers, but Cimarron also offers several replica rifles as well. Cimarron offers several versions of the 1860, 1866, and 1873 rifles chambered in calibers from .22 LR to .45 Colt. With barrels from 19 inches to 30 inches and several different finishes, these rifles are perfect for the cowboy customers, partner!

Navy Arms

The Old West is alive and well with a selection of replica lever-action and single-shot rifles from Navy Arms. Chambered in classic .45 and .44-40 calibers, these guns are perfect for the collector, the hunter, and the Western enthusiast. Also available are several Rolling Block target and buffalo rifles chambered in .45-70.

Rifle Importers

Action Arms

One of the most respected names in European rifle design is Brno, imported by Action Arms. Now, Action Arms is offering the legendary Brno 600 Series rifle in Standard and Short Action models as well as the Magnum 602 model. With controlled-feed claw extractor and integral dovetail scope bases, and chambered in calibers from .243 Winchester to .458 Win. Mag., this gun is perfect for all kinds of shooting.

Also new from Brno/Action Arms is the 537 -- an updated classic in .270 Winchester, .308 Winchester, and .30-06 designed for American hunters.

Century International Arms

Importing dozens of low-cost, high-profit rifles, Century International Arms offers one of the best values in the industry today: the sporterized version of the famous FAL rifle. With a thumbhole stock and the flash suppressor and bayonet lug removed, this rifle, chambered in .308 Winchester, is pin-point accurate and powerful enough for most North American game hunting.

Century International Arms also offers a sporterized version of the classic M-14 military rifle in .308 Winchester. Manufactured by Norinco, these rifles have a genuine forged receiver, a new walnut stock, and are listed in "excellent" condition.

European American Armory

Hunters and shooters alike have come to respect the quality of the Rover 870 bolt-action rifle made by Sabatti and imported by EAA. With a 22-inch barrel and a European walnut stock, this rifle comes in calibers from .22-250 to .338 Win. Mag. The Rover 870 comes drilled and tapped for scope mounts.

Gun South Inc.

The Steyr/Mannlicher line of high-quality European bolt-action rifles is the specialty of GSI. The Steyr/Mannlicher name represents many generations of manufacturing expertise and time-tested service that keeps your customers coming back. All rifles feature cold hammer-forged barrels, ultra-smooth actions, and hand-crafted stocks in the tradition of fine European craftsmanship.

Whatever your customers hunt and wherever they hunt it, Steyr/Mannlicher offers a rifle that will serve them well for a lifetime of shooting.

H&R 1871

When shooters reminisce about great hunts and rifles of the past, they often mention the name Harrington & Richardson. The H&R 1871 Ultra single-shot rifle is one of the best selling varmint rifles on the market, chambered in .223 Remington and .22-250. The rifle features a hand-checkered curly maple stock and a heavy varmint barrel to provide tight grouping which customers expect (and demand) in a single-shot rifle.

Your customers might expect to pay top-dollar for a gun like this, but H&R has a reputation for providing high value, not high price tags. At a price point well below other guns on the market, the H&R Ultra is priced to sell.

KBI

For the customer who demands the finest in a small- to medium-bore rifle, KBI imports the FIAS line of bolt-action, European rifles. These guns are as beautiful as they are accurate with sleek lines and superior materials.

The barrels are cold hammer forged and have been government proof tested. The hinged floor plate in the solid steel received allows for easy reloading on the range or in the field. With an oil-finished walnut stock, these guns are available in calibers from .22-250 to .300 Win. Mag.

Precision Imports

Say the word "Mauser" and shooters around the world will know you're talking about some of the finest rifles ever made. Precision Imports is the exclusive importer of Mauser rifles in the U.S., offering Mauser .22 LR rifles for the serious shooter, and the Mauser Model 99 centerfire rifle, chambered in most popular American calibers.

Stoeger

Some of the finest European rifles available are made by Tikka of Finland and imported by Stoeger Industries. The Tikka rifles are perfect for the game hunter who wants reliability as well as hand-crafted beauty. With bolt-action guns as well as double-barreled rifles, in calibers from .223 Remington to .338 Win. Mag., your hunting customers are sure to find what they want when you have Tikka in stock.

Also imported by Stoeger is the Sako line of hand-crafted, bolt-action rifles. Available in grades from the Fiberclass all-weather version to the Super Deluxe with hand-checkered stocks, these are the right rifles for the discriminating hunter.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Publishers' Development Corporation
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Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Author:Farrell, Scott
Publication:Shooting Industry
Date:May 1, 1993
Words:2548
Previous Article:Shotgun showdown: covering the market.
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