OK here we go! Finally getting to the point of actually being able to start the writing part of this little project......well it started as a little project, and has mushroomed into a complete season of work!!! Now in my head I have the final layout of this little diary of the Venom Scout venture, and I hope that you can follow along through my ramble. I am not going to go into the whole definition of the origins of the idea of scout rifles. I feel that Wikipedia does that well enough so I have included a link to that definition as well as some other links at the bottom of this page. I have decided that since this has been so well received as an idea for an article that I am going to venture into showing the answer to one of the most frequent questions asked concerning the idea for this article. It will also be an unveiling of sorts as to what we at Venom might offer as some scout rifle (concept) designs.
I am going to break this up into two sections.... first what I have already mentioned above... the second part will cover what the original idea for this article which was going to be a review of the Ruger Scout Rifle, and how it as my choice for factory mass produced best scout rifle could be customized.
Now for the first part of this article I decided to work with several rifles to see what we could come up with as a scout rifle....... the Mosin Nagant, Mauser 98K, and an AR platform rifle will start the ball rolling, but as this goes along in my usual diary ramble style of writing as a shooter taking notes.... we will probably be adding other rifles to the mix. As for the second part of this article; I have of course obtained the use of a Ruger Scout rifle to play with in the woods, and hollows of Eastern Kentucky.
The first concept rifle will be based on a Mosin Nagant M44 barreled action that I was lucky enough to find. The action is as like new as you can find unless you machine one yourself ((never know that might be in the future). The barrel action has a perfect bore, attached bayonet, and perfect finish....... it may have never been fired. As I have stated previously in this article I am not going to go into the history of the rifle, and cartridge at this time as Wikipedia has a piece that is good enough. I have placed a link at the bottom of this page along with other pertinent information links.
Now seeing that it is only a barrel action the first thing to do was to figure out what was needed to build it into a rifle. After some research, and drawings I designed what I am calling the Sovereign Tiger Scout. I also found in my research that these are very popular rifles in most of America. So I sat down at the computer to design some possible wildcats on the 7.62x54R cartridge that the Nagant is chambered. I feel that pictures are worth a thousand words so I am going to include pics with brief explanations of the problems, and design features that I faced while doing this project. Remember if you like what you read, and see!! Let us sale you everything you need, and then put one together for you. That way you get it done right the first time that way you can hit the range the same day you receive it. Call for all options.....
Mosin Nagant M44 Barreled Action (Bayonet not in picture):
I decided to go with a little different approach with this concept........... more of an up gradable scout that can allow for maximum customization. I made a list of what was needed, and decided to go with the following parts. Of course we needed a stock, and after looking around I went with the Archangel made by Pro Mag. The trigger was horrible so I decided to go with a Timney Trigger that had a much needed upgrade for the Mosin Nagant........ a working safety. As with many military rifles of the era the bolt knob needed to dealt with, and that seemed to be the biggest issue to decide on.... should I bend, should I replace, or just leave the original straight knob. Next seeing that this was to be a scout concept I needed to figure out a scope mount....... I decided on a really nice one made by S&K Mounts that utilized the rear sight fixture of the Nagant, but that left me with the need to figure out a new way of having a rear sight. Last I decided that I needed to camo the rifle to make it pop visually... the metal looked good, and just needed some finish work on the bolt. The stock was tan so I decided to just concentrate on the stock..... it took some research but finally decided on a really nice Hydro- Graphic film that fit the design perfect. Now all that was left to do was to fit everything together so that it worked, and test fire the finished product.
Below I are some pictures of the Mosin with the straight bolt handle that is originally had from the Russian factory... this is in the final stages of the build. Next is to decide on a bolt handle to add to the rifle. However if it is preferred it can be left as is with the straight bolt handle. In the pictures the bayonet is extended to help the rifle stay in place on the hillside. I am very pleased with the design of the hydrographics. After the bolt handle is switched out the only step left to do is test firing and scope adjustments.
Below are pictures of the Timney trigger that we installed, as well as the scope......... I was really impressed with the mount, and scope from S&K ..... at the bottom of the page .....as well as on the our industry link page you will find a link to all companies whose products we used in these projects............
I decided to do a few drawing of possible wildcat cartridges of the 7.62 X 54R cartridge. Why did I decide? I found that this is a well liked rifle, and a respected cartridge. I heard many talk of a desire to own a Nagant chambered in another cartridge...especially one chambered in a larger caliber. So I decided to do some drawing of ideas, and these are drawing of a basic idea. I am not saying that this would be a new Earth shattering design that could make it into a rifle. I am just showing some ideas in drawing form........ so to speak.
While I was working on these drawings I did notice that the case could potentially be strong enough to withstand a strong slower burning charge. I do think that the potential does lay in a large grain projectile at a moderate speed, but that would be further down the evolutionary design work. Also the shoulder could be shifted, and other potential changes. Also pressure as to what the rifle would withstand... basically many factors would need to be addressed., I will say at this time that if someone did want to consider one of these ideas. I could be talked into working more on the idea of these wildcats. They would of course be the owner of a proto-type firearm. I am naming these cartridges The Russian Wolf Series of drawings.
Below is a target from the testing of the Mosin Nagant...... this is using the Winchester ammunition that is pictured........ it by far has been the best ammunition.......another brand tested that I won't mention was a real Bear as far as reliability, as well as accuracy. I will note also that with the bayonet extended on this little rifle... accuracy was slightly better than shown in the target picture....I would like to note that on the 100 yd shots ! That is actually three shots !! two on the bullseye same hole! You can't see it clearly on the picture.
Now we are going to touch on the Ruger Scout rifle which in my opinion is the best mass produced example of the scout rifle concept. The features are well thought out, the caliber is readily available just about everywhere, and packs the performance that can be widely used in the field.... the added benefit to the Ruger is... well it looks cool as hell to boot!! I do wish that the rifle came in other calibers but that would deviate from the original concept dreamed up by Col. Cooper.
Much has been said about the Ruger offering, and I don't really see what more I could add to the mix... the biggest idea I had was to scope or not to scope the rifle. I did briefly think of mounting a scope as ome do with the AR platforms to the side at an angle, but in the end I decided to do a traditional scope mount forward of the receiver. The little scope I chose is a Leatherwood model that is really a nice little scope for the price, and held up very nicely in the hills of Eastern Kentucky.
I really can't say much more on the Ruger that hasn't been said since it was first introduced. If you are looking for a cool looking, functional, practical, and accurate mass produced scout rifle then the Ruger more than fits the bill. The Hi-Lux scout scope is the best choice for any scout rifle. Nothing but good to say about both products.