Colt Light Rifle


John Wayne
November 17, 2010, 02:02 PM
A local store is closing these rifles out for $419+tax. I handled it and it balances well, and is very light. Tried doing some research on it and found that they are no longer in production, were contracted out, and some models were recalled.

I'm posting here to see if anyone owns or has shot one...I doubt they'll be much of a collector's item, but are they a good lightweight hunting rifle for the price? There are several good rifles that only cost a little bit more, so while I don't want to pass up a bargain I'd rather pay more if the CLR is junk.

This one is in .300 Win Mag. I'm betting it's got a pretty stout kick, but I handload and this would be purely a hunting rifle (will probably see <100 rounds a year). I have other rifles to shoot at the range.

From researching them, I've learned that around 6,000 were made. No one seems to have actually shot one though. I'm more interested in how it shoots and holds up, and compares to other rifles in that price range--like the Tikkas, Howas, Remington 700 SPS, etc. I've been wanting to buy a .30 caliber rifle, and until I saw this I was thinking of going with the 700 SPS in .308 or .30-06.

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November 17, 2010, 04:38 PM
I had one for a few years in 300 win mag and wish I'd kept it. It is basically a New Ultra Lite Arms rifle with a cheaper stock and trigger. The NULA's sell for $2500 to $3000. That is a great price, most of the few that I see are priced in the $700 range. Unless I'm mistaken only the 30-06 rifles were recalled.

They are well made accurate rifles. I didn't like the trigger on mine. It almost felt like a very light double action pull. You never quite knew when it would break.

Recoil was brisk, but I didn't find it objectionable. It is a 6.25 lb. 300 mag, but the stock and recoil pad are well designed.

Make sure the scope mounts are included. I think you will have to buy them from NULA if not. They should not be extremely expensive, around $50 is what I'd expect.

I have read that you can return the rifle to NULA and they will fit it with one of their better triggers and stocks. It wouldn't be cheap, but you would end up with a NULA for about 1/3-1/2 what a new one would cost.

November 17, 2010, 05:18 PM
If you're hunting deer, I'd opt for the 308 or 06. save your shoulder and they're cheaper to reload.

300WM is way overkill. the cartridge was made for 400yd shots at large game.... shots that 99% of all hunters are never going to be faced with

November 17, 2010, 07:13 PM
The CLR was made by Saco defense (which had a very close relationship with Colt) they also made Weatherbys for a time. They have a very good reputation for accuracy. That's a good price but the ammo isn't cheap.

Colt had bolt guns made by Sauer, Sako and others this was an attempt at making one 'in house'. It has some 'collector value' with the Colt name, but for the average hunter I'd suggest a .30-06/.270/.308 or other readily available caliber.

November 17, 2010, 07:24 PM
A friend had his Weatherby 300 mag here the other day and said his Doctor told him not to shoot it because of Heart problems. A 308 or 30 06 will kill anything in North America unless you plan to travel.

John Wayne
November 17, 2010, 09:20 PM
I realize that .300 Win Mag is overkill for whitetail deer, but this rifle is out of production and the only one available to me at this price is chambered in .300 Winchester Magnum. IIRC, .300 Win Mag is nowhere near .300 Wthby Mag, and is closer to .30-06.

I do reload, however, and there is a huge assortment of .30 caliber wouldn't I be able to load a 150 or 165 gr. bullet to .30-06 or .308 velocities? Will accuracy suffer?

Whitetail deer are currently the only large game I hunt, but once I can afford to, I would like to go on an elk/moose/caribou hunt. Buying this rifle and downloading it for whitetail, then loading to .300 WM specs for larger game, seems to present a good solution.

November 17, 2010, 10:10 PM
If you reload, by all means buy it!

November 17, 2010, 10:19 PM
Handloading is what makes this rifle work. By loading down to 308 or 30-06 levels you have a very versatile rifle. Any 300 mag can be loaded lighter, but who wants to lug around a 10 lb rifle if the power is not needed. Any other 6 lb bolt rifle will cost you at least $1,000. If a quality lightweight, versatile rifle appeals to you, you won't beat the Colt Light Rifle for that money.

Any dummy can deal with recoil by adding lots of weight to a gun. But modern stock designs and hi-tech recoil pads allow light rifles to be much more manageable. The only time recoil is a problem is during sight-in and there are numerous ways to handle it from the bench. In a hunting situation you will never feel the difference between a 300 mag and a 308.

The way I see it the recoil only lasts a fraction of a second. Lugging around a heavy rifle lasts a lifetime.

November 18, 2010, 03:44 AM
They are well made rifles and a bargain at $419.

However, a 6.5 lb 300 Win Mag is going to kick a lot no matter how the stock is shaped. I always wondered about Colt's decision to make a super light rifle in magnum chamberings. IMO, a short action version in 308 and 7mm-08 would have sold better.

John Wayne
November 18, 2010, 01:50 PM
Well, couldn't pass it up so I bought it! I can't wait to shoot it, but I am already very impressed with the overall feel and quality of the rifle. The bolt is buttery smooth, and I love the trigger. Not particularly fond about the way the safety is designed, but it shouldn't be a big deal.

The gun came with a nice set of lightweight aluminum rings/mounts.

The gun weighs about 5.8 lbs, is chambered in .300 Win Mag, and has a nice matte blue finish with a synthetic stock. It's my first Colt too.

November 18, 2010, 02:40 PM
5.8 lbs! You might want to install a nice spongy recoil pad, about six inches thick. :eek: Congratulations on your Colt sir, and happy shooting. :)

John Wayne
November 18, 2010, 06:39 PM
Thank you, thank you. I plan on doing most of my shooting off a bench with the aid of a Lead Sled and reduced loads. One or two shots on a hunting trip shouldn't present too much of a problem, so long as they don't knock me out of a tree stand!

November 18, 2010, 07:57 PM
5.8 #, I'd take a friend to the range with me and watch him shot it. That mother's gonna kick.

November 18, 2010, 08:22 PM
schedule an appointent at the local eye center. cause this gun is gonna pop yours with the scope. pics please.

John Wayne
November 20, 2010, 08:49 PM
Just discovered some reduced loads with Trail Boss for the .300 Win Mag...150 gr. bullet @ 1600 fps. Looks like I can have my cake and shoot it too.

November 20, 2010, 11:27 PM
Recoil won't be a problem, if it is PM me and I'll take it off your hands.

Melvin Forbes actually designed those mounts for his Ultra Lite Rifles and then sold the rights to Talley to make the Talley ultra lite mounts. They are the best mounts available in my opinion and are on all my hunting rifles.

You have a good plan, with lighter 308 level loads it will be a pussycat to shoot and a joy to carry. Most are extremely accurate as well.

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