• Ashbury SuperSport MOD-1 Modular Rifle Chassis System (MRCS)

    Over the past thirty five years I have had the opportunity to field test and evaluate a great deal of long range precision rifle equipment. Some have been high quality, solidly built and well thought out, and others – not so much. As a current member of the Savage Rifle Team, I have been very lucky to get my hands on some really good kit and outstandingly accurate rifles. However, I don’t think I’ve ever been luckier as a precision long range shooter than getting to field test Ashbury’s SuperSport MOD-1 Alloy Series modular rifle chassis. Please understand that my Savage 110 in .338 Lapua Magnum is very accurate at range, but after mounting my barreled action in the SABER chassis it is an absolute tack driver and the most comfortable magnum rifle I have ever fired. EVER!

    Back in 2006, Ashbury developed and patented the first American made modular rifle chassis system for bolt action rifles. I was working with other projects and never really had a chance to fully test their early models. Between jobs and international shooting I just didn’t have the time to do an in-depth live fire evaluation of their kit. Over the last few years I have had many surgeries which really limited my precision rifle shooting and showed me the real importance of having a stock that fits correctly. Now seemed like a really good time to see if the Ashbury rifle chassis lived up to the good things being said about it.

    This being said, the design and ergonomic adjust-ability of the SABER rifle chassis make shooting the powerful .338 Lapua Magnum a comfortable and satisfying affair. Now you may think that perhaps I have taken leave of my senses as I am shooting a super magnum cartridge that generates more than two tons of muzzle energy and launches a 250 to 300gr projectile beyond one mile and this should be painful. No it’s not, and no longer do I have to contort my body into painfully uncomfortable positions and wrestle with the rifle to consistently get sub 1/2 MOA performance out of my rifle.

    About a year ago, Ashbury’s President Morris Peterson, asked me if I would like to T&E one of the SABER chassis. I already had a nice Savage 338 Lapua Magnum in a traditional HS Precision stock that shot extremely well, but it lacked stock adjust-ability so I made the decision to do a make-over of my rifle. I sent Ashbury my beloved Model 110 HS to install the SABER chassis which was hard to do. The rifle in its original form was the most accurate 338 Lapua Magnum rifle I have ever shot averaging about 1/2 MOA groups with Laupa 300gr Scenar ammo. It seemingly shot better the more rounds I launched down the barrel.

    I guess I would have been a bit more apprehensive, but I know the folks at Ashbury personally and their commitment to building exceptionally well designed products. Additionally, Ashbury’s Ordnance team is staffed by veteran U.S. Marine Corps MOS 2112 Precision Rifle Technicians (read Gunsmiths) and 2111 Armorers supported by experienced engineers and machinists. As such I was reasonably comfortable shipping my rifle to Ashbury, but as many of you know precision rifle shooters are a bit particular about “who” lays hands on our rifles!

    A few weeks later my beloved Savage 110 was returned to me with a post chassis installation 5-shot test targets showing an average of .35 moa group. Well, well this might just be better than I thought. I wasted no time getting out to the range and found the rifle in the SABER chassis to shoot better than before. My groups where between .35 moa and .50 moa for three rounds, but I attribute most of that to the rifle just being so perfectly adjusted to me.

    Ashbury’s SABER SuperSport Tactical Adjustable Shoulder Stock (TASS) is simple to adjust for length of pull by adding or removing spacers. A push-button mechanism allows for vertical adjustment of the Limbsaver® recoil pad drop. A one handed tool-less adjustable positive locking comb allows for vertical adjustment of the cheek piece for proper sight alignment. The comb can adjust low enough for nearly any scope or high enough to allow an angle adjustable scope base. The SABER rifle chassis uses AR type hand grips that have easy adjustments for grip angle and length between the web of your hand and trigger finger. A really nice feature if you have big beefy hands or small short fingers.

    The traditional HS stock is fixed in every way and not incredibly friendly for precision long range shooting. Foam is used to adjust the comb and you have to add an adjustable butt plate for length of pull adjustment. Length to trigger is not adjustable on the HS. The SABER rifle shoulder stock folds so you can easily stow the rifle and an added benefit is the ease of getting a cleaning rod through the rifle receiver without removing the adjustable cheek piece. In a fixed stock you have to lower the comb while this SABER chassis just folds out of the way. In short the SABER chassis is miles ahead of any fixed rifle stock and chassis on the market.

    The SABER SuperSport MOD-1 Alloy Series rifle chassis uses no bedding and is completely maintainable in the field by the user with simple tools. The unitized monolithic rail provides enhanced platform rigidity needed to reduce vibration when shooting magnum and super magnum cartridges. I am currently evaluating different grip angle adapters and the SABER field mono pod that is not only height stable and height adjustable it rides the bags too. More on this in another article.

    Over the last six months or so I have shot this rifle many times with this chassis. I have run hundreds of rounds of factory Nosler 300 grain ammo and 300 grain Lapua Scenar and Berger 300 grain hand loads through it flawlessly. It shot all of these loads under .50 moa at ranges out to 1 mile. My best handloads where with Lapua Brand Brass, Federal Magnum Match Primers and N570 Powder. In the past I have done most of my testing with Lapua Brand Factory ammo and always loved the stuff. This time I was unable to get a supply of Lapua brand in time so I tried the Nosler brand in both 338 Lapua and 308 Winchester. Both calibers made by Nosler shoot fantastic. The Nosler is a great choice for 338 Lapua as well as 308 Winchester for sure.

    I have not measure my groups at a mile but the rifle has shown no problem hitting an 18-33”” target at that distance as long as conditions are good. Conditions at that distance will beat any shooter so it would not be fair to evaluate group size at that distance. It has constantly shot around .50 moa at 600 yards though. Felt recoil seems lighter to the point of a 308Win, which I think is attributable to Savages excellent muzzle brake and the SABER chassis design. It just points and shoots so naturally since the SABER chassis was installed. It really takes the excellent Savage 338 Lapua Magnum to a whole new level making it the best all around 338 Lapua Magnum I have used. Light enough to carry and capable of mile plus shot engagements.

    To round out this package I used a Leupold MK4 3.5-25 power scope with 58 Horus reticle. It has a 35mm tube which provides 90 moa of elevation adjustment and 50 moa of wind age adjustment. The reticle provide another 17 Mils of adjustment. With the 30 moa base the Saber Chassis has built in the only real limit to the range I can shoot are the caliber and my abilities. The glass is fantastic. The scope is beyond rugged and I can think of no better scope for Tactical Rifle including a one mile plus rifle. The glass is as good as you can get. The scope tracks perfectly and holds zero no matter how much you beat up the rifle.

    For these tests I also used the Atlas 5-H Bipod. It provides a wider base than the earlier versions while allowing 15 +/- degrees of cant as well as panning abilities. Weighing in at only 26 ounces it’s a fine choice for any rifle not just a large tactical rifle. It was stable and I liked the cant and pan features. This Atlas version also has a Cant and Lock out feature so once you have your spot you can make the bipod ridged for more stability. It’s a great feature. Ashbury recommends the Long Range Accuracy Bipod for this application. I have used that bipod in the past and it is no doubt very stable as well.

    As I said at the onset of this article, I have tested several other bolt rifle chassis platforms but the SABER modular rifle chassis is the first I have endorsed because all the others I tried I found flaws that as a professional long range shooter (and mildly OCD) just could not work around. The SABER MRCS has evolved into as good a rifle chassis system as you will find. The best part is the SABER price points are excellent and the entire platform is modular. Give it a try you’ll notice a demonstrative difference in your shooting!

    Additional Photos:

    Contact Information:
    Ashbury Precision Ordnance
    PO Box 8024
    Charlottesville,VA 22906-8024

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