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Remington 770 Review

September 2011

September 13, 2011
By Bill Waugaman

My first deer rifle was, and still is, a Remington 700BDL purchased in 1971. After 40 years of use in every weather condition imaginable and literally thousands of rounds fired, it is symbolic of the Remington reputation for dependability and quality. As technology and engineering advancements have been made over the years, firearms manufacturers have taken advantage of new materials and improved designs, like Remington has done with the Model 770. Remington introduced this rifle in 2006 and marketed it as an upgrade to the Model 710. While the 770 may look basically similar to the 710, there have been ergonomic and cosmetic changes to the stock, design and engineering improvements to the receiver and bolt, and an improved magazine latch.

The Remington 770 received for this review is in .243 Winchester with black matte barrel/receiver and black synthetic stock. Starting this year, Remington added a Model 770 available with a stainless barrel/receiver and Realtree AP HD camo stock. Only having two variations and 7 different calibers will help Remington with production costs and inventory control; it also makes the buying decision a lot easier for a potential customer.

THE BARREL

Article Photos

Remington 770

The barrel is press fitted to the breach and pinned. As long as very tight machining tolerances are maintained in the production process, the head space clearance will be within specs. This method of assembly can help to keep production costs down and still produce an accurate rifle.

The muzzle has a slightly recessed crown of approximately 1/32". Protecting the bore opening is important to maintaining long term accuracy in a rifle.

THE STOCK

Fact Box

Worth Noting The rifle is heavier than what it looks. With the scope, mount and rings, it was the heaviest of the four evaluated at 8 1/4 pounds. The weight is a double-edged swordit does cut down on the felt recoil, but it also is more noticeable after a long day of hunting. The magnum rifles such as the .300 Win Mag and 7mm Rem Mag weigh about 1/8 pound more. Of the four rifles reviewed, the Remington 770 is the only one offered in magnum calibers. The Model 770 comes as a package with a Bushnell Sharpshooter 3-9x40 mounted and bore sighted. The quality of the optics is what would be expected in a scope typically selling for under $50. While it may not have the clarity of a more expensive scope, it does work and has a limited lifetime warranty.

Probably the most noticeable feature of the Model 770 is the ergonomically contoured synthetic stock. There is heavy texturing at the handgrip which extends in a narrow indentation almost the entire length along the forearm. There are 5 cosmetic indentations along the bottom and sides of the forearm with heavy texturing. The heavy texturing is on the areas of the stock that are gripped. The raised cheek piece also has heavy texturing.

The sling mounts are integrated holes/indentations in the stock. The trigger guard is actually part of the stock. If either breaks, the proper repair would be to replace the stock.

The recoil pad is about 1" thick. This would be an especially welcome feature with the two magnum calibers, a 7mm Rem Mag and .300 Win Mag.

THE ACTION/RECEIVER

The trigger is not user adjustable. From the factory, the evaluation rifle had the trigger sear breaking between 5 lb., 4 oz., plus or minus 2 ounces. There is noticeable creep which makes the trigger pull seem worse than it really is.

The bolt is 7 " long whether rifle is chambered in short or long action; by having one bolt for all rifles saves on the production costs. When chambered for a short action cartridge, the bolt still has to be retracted nearly the entire length front to back to eject a casing or cartridge and chamber the next one. In the evaluation rifle, the bolt movement was not as smooth as would be expected in a rifle carrying the Remington name.

When loading a cartridge in the chamber, the bolt movement seemed to be stiff when pushed to the forward most position and turned down engaging the lugs. On the positive side, with 3 locking lugs, it only takes a 60-degree throw on the bolt handle to release/engage the lugs.

The bolt release is on the left rear side of the action and has to be rotated 90 degrees to remove the bolt or reinstall the bolt. The safety is behind the bolt handle and to the right of the bolt shroud. The opening for the safety is larger than necessary. I can foresee moisture getting in and causing problems.

The magazine is a removable clip that is 3 " long to accommodate both long and short cartridges; for short cartridges, a " spacer is inserted into the back of the magazine to take up the space. A spring loaded clip release is attached to the stock and located in the front of the clip. The design allows for the clip to be accidentally installed backwards. The magazine has a tendency to rattle since it does not fit snugly.

The receiver is based on the Model 710 with an oval shaped ejection port machined on the right side. From the factory, the attached scope base was a single piece weaver style mount. This base does not interfere with the ejection port since the clip feed magazine does not require an open top like rifles having a breech loaded magazine.

When shooting at the range, I typically only load one cartridge at a time. Instead of taking the clip out, loading the cartridge in the clip and reinserting the clip, I drop the cartridge in the ejection port and slide the bolt forward to load it in the chamber. Doing this caused the bolt to bind about half way closed. If the cartridge was dropped in the ejection port and slid forward starting into the chamber, the bolt would close as normal.

WORTH NOTING

The rifle is heavier than what it looks. With the scope, mount and rings, it was the heaviest of the 4 evaluated at 8 1/4 pounds. The weight is a double-edged swordit does cut down on the felt recoil, but it also is more noticeable after a long day of hunting. The magnum rifles such as the .300 Win Mag and 7mm Rem Mag weigh about 1/8 pound more. Of the four rifles reviewed, the Remington 770 is the ony one offered in magnum calibers.

The Model 770 comes as a package with a Bushnell Sharpshooter 3-9x40 mounted and bore sighted. The quality of the optics is what would be expected in a scope typically selling for under $50. While it may not have the clarity of a more expensive scope, it does work and has a limited lifetime warranty.

At the range: As with the other rifles, the first step was to check the factory bore sighting with a Bushnell Professional Bore Sighter; the crosshairs matched up relatively close so the first shots were fired at 75 yards. After a couple windage and elevation adjustments, I was pleasantly surprised. Using Hornady 95 gr. SST, this rifle shot it's best 3-shot group at 75 yards measuring only .5".

CONCLUSION: The Remington Model 770 is no Model 700, and it is not intended to be. Remington designed this firearm as an entry level, out of the box, ready to go, centerfire rifle at a very affordable price point. The engineers were extremely creative in the design to keep production costs down. Will it be as rugged and dependable as my old venerable 700? Only time will tell.

 
 

 

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