I’ll be politically correct and call an AR or black rifle an MSR. MSR might stand for Modern Sporting Rifle, but these rifles are everywhere. This year, black rifles have come out of the shadows, and I think MSR should stand for Main Stream Rifle seeing as nearly every rifle manufacturer produces its own version of the MSR. To use a term, they are ubiquitous. Sure, there are MSRs that prefer the shadows, ready to defend, but there are those that compete, punch steel at distance and hunt, too. Here are a few rifles worth noting.
These aren’t your traditional Savage hunting rifles. The new MSR series from Savage includes two AR platforms. One of these, the MSR 15, is chambered in 5.56, and the other, the MSR 10, is chambered in .308 Win. The economical MSR 15 Patrol (bottom right) is loaded with features including a barrel with a .223 Wylde target chamber, 5R rifling and a Melonite QPQ finish. Blackhawk provides the furniture.
The MSR 15 Recon (far right) is a step up from the Patrol model. The Recon model is outfitted with the .223 Wylde target chamber and 5R rifling, but the barrel is free floated in an M-LOK handguard. Furniture is a Blackhawk Knoxx AR pistol grip and Axiom carbine stock. It also includes Blackhawk flip-up iron sights.
The MSR 10 Hunter (bottom left) is compact and lightweight for an AR-10 platform. No need to settle for just .308 Win.,though—not that that is a bad thing—as the Hunter is also chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor. Sweet. The 16-inch barrel uses 5R rifling and is free floated. Deer camp has a new classic in the making.
For those of us who like to tap steel at distance, the MSR 10 Long Range (top) offers all the features you need in a long-range shooter. Chambered in .308 Win. or 6.5 Creedmoor, the Long Range is equipped with a free-floated 20-inch barrel in .308 or a 22-inch barrel in 6.5. The stock is the excellent Magpul PRS Gen3 buttstock that is completely adjustable. The trigger is a Blackhawk two-stage target trigger. This will make steel plates dance in the distance. SavageArms.com
Editor's Note: This article is from the 2017 Shooters Guide issue of Gun Digest the Magazine