Gun Report

Rock River Arms LAR-15 Varmint A4 AR1520X 223 Rem./5.56mm, $1639

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This rifle was the best shooting of the group as well as the most adjustable. It also handled a hot barrel the best. However, the rifle's weight limits its portability. It also did not like the 55-grain ammo. If you are mostly hunting from fixed positions or expecting long strings of fire, it would be hard to beat the Rock River for ease of shooting and consistent accuracy. If you are stalking, you would be better off with the lighter Ruger. In this case, we'd give it a B+ for hunting from fixed positions, but only a C+ if you had to tote it all day.

Rock River Arms LAR-15 Varmint A4 AR1520X 223 Rem./5.56mm, $1639

Gun Details

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The stainless barrel is a hoss, and it accounts for some of the sizable weight penalty the RRA operates under. The 223 Wylde chamber allows it to shoot both 223 Rem. and 5.56mm NATO rounds interchangeably. Rifles with .223 Rem. chambers often don't shoot 5.56 NATO rounds well, and the practice should be discouraged. 5.56 NATO chambers can shoot 223 Rem. without incident.
The weighty rifle-length handguard.
The Enidine Hydraulic Buffer is housed in the excellent PRS stock. The buffer makes the recoil pulse noticeably softer and smoother when shooting heavier loads. However, the manufacturer warned that functionality might be affected with lighter loads. We never experienced function problems prior to shooting the TulAmmo. The buffer is no longer offered, and it is easy to exchange the hydraulic buffer with a standard buffer if the shooter wishes.

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