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Mossberg ATR100 Rifle Review

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by goalie, Oct 20, 2005.

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  1. goalie

    goalie Member

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    WHAT: Mossberg ATR 100 rifle in .270 Win with black synthetic stock and matte black finish.

    http://www.mossberg.com/model100atr.htm

    WHY: I am going rifle hunting for deer this year instead of my usual muzzle-loading season due to a trip to Hawaii. I planned on using a nice, wood stocked .375 H&H, but decided that I did not want to tear up the stock dragging it up into tree stands. (Yeah, yeah, like I NEED a reason to buy a new rifle....)

    HOW MUCH: It cost $244 at Wal-Mart. It came with bases installed, and I purchased Warne rings for another $25 to mount a Leopold Vari-X III 3.5-10 scope (that I already owned) onto the rifle. Total cost out the door was about $285.

    FIT AND FINISH: Utilitarian. It is not pretty, but the bolt action is actually rather smooth. The stock is quite a bit stiffer in the forearm than the stocks I have seen on the Savage rifles. The finish of the metal appears to be some kind of spray-on matte finish.

    Function: While it is not a tack-driving benchrest rifle, it shot rather well. After getting it on paper and dialed in at 25 yards, my first group at 50 yards was about .75 inches. My first group at 100 yards was about 1.5 inches. My best group at 100 yards was 1.25 inches, and the worst about 3.5 inches, which was the last group, shot rapid fire, with a HOT barrel. The average group size was between 1.25 and 1.5 inches when fired slow from a bench using a rest for the forearm and a sandbag under the butt.

    The ammo used for testing was 130gr Fusion .270 ammo made by Federal. I will soon buy dies and reload for this rifle, and I expect that, as has been the case with every other rifle I have owned, I will be able to shrink the groups by at least 1/3 their size.

    The trigger is single-staged, with a tiny bit of creep and a tad of overtravel. It was quite easy to shoot well with the trigger. The rifle functioned flawlessly, with no issues feeding, extracting, or ejecting, and the action was actually rather smooth. The recoil was also minimal (I'm used to a .375H&H off the bench, so take that for what it's worth).

    OVERALL: I just bought a rifle for under $250 dollars that is more than accurate enough for the deer hunting terrain I will be in. I will not be worried about dinging up the stock while walking through the woods or dragging it up behind me into a deer-stand. I am actually quite suprised that one can buy a perfectly functional bolt-action rifle for what I paid for it. I would highly recommed this rifle to anyone looking at buying a true hunting rifle, especially for someone who is not going to use it to punch paper two dozen times a year, but is going to sight it in every fall, then hunt with it.

    I will also post an accuracy update when I get the chance to shoot it at longer ranges.

    Edit: The smaller group was my first group at 50 yards, the larger my first group at 100. It isn't a 1/4MOA gun, but then again, I shot the groups in real life, not over the internet......
     

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  2. GunGoBoom

    GunGoBoom member

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    Thanks for the report. I'm sure that rifle won't do better than 1 foot groups without that scope - that Loopy magicall pulls the bullets in tight. :) Seriously, sounds like a really good gun for the money.
     
  3. TrafficMan

    TrafficMan Member

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    accuracy looks pretty dang good for a $250.00 gun, i'm impressed...perhaps it will improve after it has been broken in a bit!
     
  4. Fumbler

    Fumbler Member

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    I've never seen an economy class sporter weight Remington 700 or Win M79 do any better than 1MOA with run of the mill ammo anyway, so I'd say the ATR is doing pretty darn good.
     
  5. goalie

    goalie Member

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    As an update, I went out and shot it again today just to verify the zero. The first shot from a clean/cold bore was a little low. Total for the five-shot group (indluding the low first shot) was about 2 inches. It groups an inch and a half for the other 4 shots. I am still quite pleased with the rifle.

    :)
     
  6. SCarruth

    SCarruth Member

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    Excellent post, very informative.
     
  7. Bullet Bob

    Bullet Bob Member

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    Got my new issue of American Rifleman today, they reviewed your rifle, and came to the same conclusions you did.
     
  8. ReadyontheRight

    ReadyontheRight Member

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    Gotta love a quality, inexpensive American-made rifle. :)
     
  9. goalie

    goalie Member

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    I actually measured the target tonight (sitting around with a Guiness in my hand surfing the web got me to thinking, and I always extimate bigger, since I get annoyed with the "I shot 1/4 MOA at 500 yards with a Daisy Red-Ryder posts...) and it turns out that the rifle shot a 5-shot group (I only shot 5-rounds to check the zero) of 1.75 inches center-to-center, with the one low shot from the cold-bore (though it could have been me). The other 4 shots were in a group that was 1.25 inches. The total horizontal spread of all 5 shots was less than 0.5 inches, as they were stung out vertically.

    The 4-shot group was centered exactly where the rifle was zero'd earlier in the week: 1.5" high and dead center windage at 100 yards. Again, I have to say that I am rather impressed with this rifle's accuracy and trigger. It makes me wonder if the .30-06 would perform just as well. At $244 each, one could have a .270 and a .30-06 for less than my brother paid for his Remington 700 BDL that doesn't shoot any better with factory ammo (we shot them side-by-side this week).
     
  10. P0832177

    P0832177 member

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    He is not kidding! The 2nd and 3rd shots were on top of each other. The horizontal spread was less then my thumb! A fellow has to ponder what it will do with hand loads?
     
  11. Samuel_Hoggson

    Samuel_Hoggson Member

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    You've got it right........

    Spending more on a scope and mount than on your rifle, eh?

    You are wise.

    Sam
     
  12. Mannlicher

    Mannlicher Member

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    I need another 30-06 rifle. Hey, I really do, I am not just kidding :)
    I think that after Wilma blows through here, I am going to run down to Wally World and buy one.
    I was impressed with the review in American Rifleman, and pleased to see corroboration here.
     
  13. Tropical Z

    Tropical Z Member

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    The path less chosen...
    1.Aren't they really made overseas somewhere?
    2.Can they be had in .308?
     
  14. goalie

    goalie Member

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    Unless the hurricane coming in turns Texas into "overseas somewhere," then no, it is made in the USA!!! (That's the best part)

    No, they are only in .270 and .30-06 right now.
     
  15. Ash

    Ash Member

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    They use the barrel nut in a similar fashon to the Savage except there are no ridges to grip to remove them. Yet, the 100ATR has a true reciever/barrel mating and, fundamentally, is not really any different from any other standard rifle. Thanks for the posting. I have been looking at them for a 270 knock-about rifle.

    Ash
     
  16. goalie

    goalie Member

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    Well, mine did just fine deer hunting this weekend. I am quite sure the deer didn't know it was shot with an inexpensive rifle, and it fell where it was shot.

    On a side note, I am quite impressed with the Fusion .270 ammo from Federal. Rather impressive results on a deer that weighed around 200 pounds. The 130 grain bullet entered the chest cavity, penetrated, and exited through the far side leaving a 1/2" hole. Not too shabby for an 80 yard shot (per my range finder). I had been worried the bullet would not hold together if I had a close shot, since it is going so fast.
     
  17. Red Tornado

    Red Tornado Member

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    I believe American Rifleman called it the Mossberg 500 of rifles. That's a great goal, and should insure that it's around for years to come, and will probably eventually have additional chamberings.

    Thanks for the report, Goalie.
    RT
     
  18. dakotasin

    dakotasin Member

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    ok, this statement has me perplexed a little, and i'd like a little more info, here.

    i see internet and magazine pics all the time of recovered bullets, and how the bullet was found under the hide on the offside or whatever. i've shot a deer or two, and been party to another kill or two, and to date, i have never recovered a bullet. i've shot deer long (500-ish yards), and i've shot them short (under 10 feet). i've shot them w/ magnums, i've shot them w/ standards, and i've shot them w/ standard cup-n-core bullets, monolithic, bonded core, and plastic tips. i've shot them thru shoulder bone, thru backbone, ribs, and i've hit them at every conceivable angle. i've shot big bucks, little does, and everything in between (dressed body weights of 300 pounds down to 125). i've shot a couple w/ factory loads, but the vast majority has been handloads...

    so... my question: your statement about the fusion bullets performance (the exit) as being particularly good performance - well, do you have problems getting bullets to leave the body w/ other ammo? when i first read your post, i thought to myself 'well, what did you expect?', but in all seriousness, and w/o being rhetorical, what did you expect? and why was the fusion performance so much better than whatever else?
     
  19. goalie

    goalie Member

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    To answer your question, I didn't know what to expect, as it was the first deer that I ever shot with a rifle. I usually muzzle-load for deer, and the results have been impressive, but the shots all relatively short (no scopes on blackpowder rifles in MN). I had just read about how small, fast bullets can sometimes break-up when hitting the animal at short range unless you use very expensive premium ammo with partition bullets blah blah blah..... That didn't happen, my not-too-expensive Fusion ammo worked as intended, so I am happy.
     
  20. goalie

    goalie Member

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    I just thought I would add an update to my review. Over a year has gone by since I got the Mossberg ATR-100, and today I went out shooting in the bitter cold with a guy from work.

    It shot 3 rounds of the same 130 grain Fusion ammo into one, almost dead-center, hole for me when checking the zero for some upcoming coyote hunting.

    The trigger has improved with use.

    The finish has proved durable while dragging the rifle up into my Summit Viper tree stand.

    I would still give this rifle a big thumbs-up to anyone looking for a hunting rifle.
     
  21. rangerruck

    rangerruck Member

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    yeah, if you take a close look , it is actually like a howa clone, and the stock , I think , is pretty innovative. they built in sling studs, and the way it has the almost bed / pillar work to it.
     
  22. MudPuppy

    MudPuppy Member

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    I ended up with a 710 from a neighbor without doing the research--I wished I'd have gotten one of these. :(
     
  23. BAT1

    BAT1 Member

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    Thinking about ATR in .308

    Does any body have one in this caliber? Looks too good to pass up.
     
  24. Lucky

    Lucky Member

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    Thanks Goalie, I'm sold! I need a rifle to tend me over, a gunsmith class where I was going to build a rifle was cancelled, so the Mossberg ATR it is!

    Thanks again for taking the time.

    Scott
     
  25. foghornl

    foghornl Member

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    I have the .30-06 version of "Goalie's" rifle. With most commercial soft-point ammo, will hold well under 2" for 5 shots @100Yds.

    Shooting buddy got under 0.7" @100 Yds with Federal Match ammo....better than I can shoot.
     
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