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Mossberg MPV Predator rifle

Mossberg MPV Predator rifle

To me the name Mossberg means pump-action shotguns with their classic ATP 500 Slugster getting the brand recognised in the UK in the early 1980s. I knew they made rifles too but never got the opportunity to test one and to my knowledge they did little in the UK fullbore bolt-action scene. But that has all changed with their MVP range that - identical to the Slugster - offers a lot of gun for not a lot of money!

Never having shot one of their bolt-guns before I was sceptical as what was on offer seemed far too cheap and I assumed corners had been cut. Well mainly no, but there are a few areas that could have done with a tad more thought. But to be honest the package far exceeded my expectations!

GREY GHOST

The MVP range is large with many options on stock materials and configurations as well as barrel lengths and calibres. Included in this are Scout and Patrol rifles as well as one with an MDT LSS chassis and Magpul MOE accessories, however my tester was the 24” Varmint chambered in 5.56x45mm/223 Rem, with a 1-9” twist rate. This will probably be the version that ticks most boxes in the UK. I would describe this rifle as a medium weight varminter, as even when fully bombed up it does not feel as heavy or unhandy as say a Remy 700 VLSF.

Another USP is the fact the gun runs on standard AR15-style magazines and comes from the box with an alloy, 10-shot Colt-type clip. Add in an adjustable Savage-style trigger, steel Weaver bases and a pillar-bedded, grey laminate Bench Rest type stock and it all adds up to an impressive package.

LOCK, STOCK AND…

The thing that hits you first about the Varmint is its grey laminate stock. The rectangular forend is full and freefloats the barrel though on my example the channel was cut a tad off bore centre though did not touch the tube at all! The pistol grip is hand-filling and near vertical and offers a great hand/trigger finger position. Textured panels are seen on the sides of the forend and grip and offer a modern look. Moving back we come to the butt, which looks like someone went a bit mad with the router. It’s deep as befits the style but is very thin in cross section and where it scallops into the grip I doubt if there is ½” of material in the width.

Length of pull (LOP) is short at 13 ¼”, it looks like the slim recoil pad can be removed and spacers fitted. There’s a vestigial, ambidextrous comb/cheek piece, which adds about 1/8” of extra height and width and I have to say the comb felt a bit slim on my cheek. QD sling studs are fitted fore and aft as standard and overall the furniture is well presented and finished.

Removing the barrelled action from the stock shows a rather unusual approach. It’s pillar bedded, which is good and the action sits on a removable polymer block, which is also the magazine well. Unlike some modern rifles the MVP shows a proper recoil lug.

REMY + SAVAGE = MVP

The action is like a Remy 700 with a fully enclosed, twin lug head with plunger ejector. Unusual is the articulated feed lug at 6 o’clock on the bolt head. It’s obviously designed to ensure it gets enough case head to push on the forward stroke feeding from an AR mag and hinges up out of the way on the rearward movement. I’ve never seen this approach before, as to its longevity I make no comment!

The bolt is spiral fluted, not sure if it’s for looks or to aid functionality! The handle angles back nicely and shows a checked, semi-fl at knob, lift angle is around 90° and it is a bit stiff as you raise it for the cock-on-opening mech. At the rear the tail of the striker sits flush with the shroud when cocked, which you can see and feel. The safety is a 2-positon lever (rear right of the action) it pushes forward for FIRE, rear SAFE with bolt operation and the bolt release a plunger rear left.

story continues below...

The short action receiver shows two steel Weaver bases and like the barrel is matte black in finish. The trigger mech is like a Savage AccuTrigger and shows the classic inner (Glock-like) safety blade. Mossberg calls it the LBA™ Lightning Bolt Action™ Adjustable Trigger! It’s easily adjustable by a single screw at the front of the block but the stock needs to come off to access it. Typically it cannot be set too light as it will go into fail safe mode. Screwing the adjuster in reduces the weight. It came set about midway with a firm but useable 5 lb break. I backed this off a bit, it dropped the poundage and certainly crisped up the release to a more predictable level.

BOXING CLEVER

Feed is from an old-style, aluminium, Colt AR15-type mag, made in house it holds 10-rounds! Magazines slide straight in with the release being a pull-back lug at the front of the well that engages an AR15-like retaining lug. The mag is a very sloppy fit, I also tried Colt and Magpul 20s and they were better, but not by a lot.

The 24” barrel is fluted for half its length and is 18mm in diameter apart from where it expands in to the re-enforce. Taking yet another cue from Savage it appears to be secured by a collar. My example was not threaded but the supplier told me all guns for sale will be. Useful to is the 1-9” rifling twist rate, meaning more leeway on bullet weight choice. For the test I ran, 50, 55, 56 and 62 and 69-grain loads.

For the test I fitted the MVP with a Harris BRS bipod, Vortex Viper 6.5-20x50 with target turrets in Tier 1 (ex TET) 30mm rings. Ammo went to 50-grain (V-MAX) Norma Varmint, 55-grain Winchester Varmint X, 56-grain GECO Express, 62-grain SP Hornady TAP Barrier and my Sierra 69-grain HPBT Match King loads running on Ram Shot TAC powder.

ASSUMPTIONS AND REALITY

The overly slim butt profile was not to my liking and given the MVP is also available in 308 Win I reckon it could be a real cheek biter! However, in 223 Rem and though not feeling how I like it I had no problems with stock weld, head alignment or general comfort! I did find the LOP a bit short, which forced me to push the scope all the way forward to suit. But the rifle is more than useable from the box even by a gorilla-armed shooter like me.

Filling the mag to 10-rounds did not do a lot for the feed and I found initially that reducing the payload to five made things easier. This is not helped by the seriously slack fit in the well. To be fair towards the end of my testing session the Mossberg clip begun to ease up a bit, it obviously needs some running in! Both the Colt alloy 20 and Magpul curved 20 fed far easier and also entered and removed better too.

The bolt is a bit a bit loose in its run, however, it locks up solid and is something you get used to. Likewise the firm bolt lift! One thing I would say is check the rifle over before you start shooting it as first results were variable, which I tracked down to the scope bases being slightly loose as were the action screws. SOP for a new gun I agree; but sometimes we can forget!

Tight and ready to go the MVP proved itself a shooter – it shot ¾” with the Norma and Winchester and a most pleasing ½” with the GECO and on the inch with the Hornady. Moving up to my 69-grain reload showed it open up to 1 ½ to 2”, which did not really surprise me. It’s plain to see it’s ammo-friendly within its twist rate and I reckon some experimentation with handloads would produce something rather special. The build with its 24” tube does lend itself to both varminting, small deer work and certainly targets. I can see some people buying this as opposed to an AR15 for Practical/Service use or just as an accurate paper puncher.

OK there are a some things I do not like such as the overly slim butt profile and the rather slack magazine fit. But others I do – well presented and finished, common box mag feed, adjustable trigger, versatile rifling twist and price, which is sub £700.

PRICE:  £640
CONTACT:  Saddlery & Gunroom, 01959 573089, www.mossberg.com

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

gun
features

  • Name: Mossberg MVP Varmint
  • Calibre: 5.56x45/223 Rem
  • Capacity : 10 (any AR magazine)
  • Length : 43”
  • Twist rate : 1-9”
  • Weight : 7 ¾ lbs
  • Stock : laminate BR-style
  • Trigger: Adjustable

0 Comments



Mossberg MPV Predator rifle

Mossberg MPV Predator rifle

To me the name Mossberg means pump-action shotguns with their classic ATP 500 Slugster getting the brand recognised in the UK in the early 1980s. I knew they made rifles too but never got the opportunity to test one and to my knowledge they did little in the UK fullbore bolt-action scene. But that has all changed with their MVP range that - identical to the Slugster - offers a lot of gun for not a lot of money!

Never having shot one of their bolt-guns before I was sceptical as what was on offer seemed far too cheap and I assumed corners had been cut. Well mainly no, but there are a few areas that could have done with a tad more thought. But to be honest the package far exceeded my expectations!

GREY GHOST

The MVP range is large with many options on stock materials and configurations as well as barrel lengths and calibres. Included in this are Scout and Patrol rifles as well as one with an MDT LSS chassis and Magpul MOE accessories, however my tester was the 24” Varmint chambered in 5.56x45mm/223 Rem, with a 1-9” twist rate. This will probably be the version that ticks most boxes in the UK. I would describe this rifle as a medium weight varminter, as even when fully bombed up it does not feel as heavy or unhandy as say a Remy 700 VLSF.

Another USP is the fact the gun runs on standard AR15-style magazines and comes from the box with an alloy, 10-shot Colt-type clip. Add in an adjustable Savage-style trigger, steel Weaver bases and a pillar-bedded, grey laminate Bench Rest type stock and it all adds up to an impressive package.

LOCK, STOCK AND…

The thing that hits you first about the Varmint is its grey laminate stock. The rectangular forend is full and freefloats the barrel though on my example the channel was cut a tad off bore centre though did not touch the tube at all! The pistol grip is hand-filling and near vertical and offers a great hand/trigger finger position. Textured panels are seen on the sides of the forend and grip and offer a modern look. Moving back we come to the butt, which looks like someone went a bit mad with the router. It’s deep as befits the style but is very thin in cross section and where it scallops into the grip I doubt if there is ½” of material in the width.

Length of pull (LOP) is short at 13 ¼”, it looks like the slim recoil pad can be removed and spacers fitted. There’s a vestigial, ambidextrous comb/cheek piece, which adds about 1/8” of extra height and width and I have to say the comb felt a bit slim on my cheek. QD sling studs are fitted fore and aft as standard and overall the furniture is well presented and finished.

Removing the barrelled action from the stock shows a rather unusual approach. It’s pillar bedded, which is good and the action sits on a removable polymer block, which is also the magazine well. Unlike some modern rifles the MVP shows a proper recoil lug.

REMY + SAVAGE = MVP

The action is like a Remy 700 with a fully enclosed, twin lug head with plunger ejector. Unusual is the articulated feed lug at 6 o’clock on the bolt head. It’s obviously designed to ensure it gets enough case head to push on the forward stroke feeding from an AR mag and hinges up out of the way on the rearward movement. I’ve never seen this approach before, as to its longevity I make no comment!

The bolt is spiral fluted, not sure if it’s for looks or to aid functionality! The handle angles back nicely and shows a checked, semi-fl at knob, lift angle is around 90° and it is a bit stiff as you raise it for the cock-on-opening mech. At the rear the tail of the striker sits flush with the shroud when cocked, which you can see and feel. The safety is a 2-positon lever (rear right of the action) it pushes forward for FIRE, rear SAFE with bolt operation and the bolt release a plunger rear left.

story continues below...

The short action receiver shows two steel Weaver bases and like the barrel is matte black in finish. The trigger mech is like a Savage AccuTrigger and shows the classic inner (Glock-like) safety blade. Mossberg calls it the LBA™ Lightning Bolt Action™ Adjustable Trigger! It’s easily adjustable by a single screw at the front of the block but the stock needs to come off to access it. Typically it cannot be set too light as it will go into fail safe mode. Screwing the adjuster in reduces the weight. It came set about midway with a firm but useable 5 lb break. I backed this off a bit, it dropped the poundage and certainly crisped up the release to a more predictable level.

BOXING CLEVER

Feed is from an old-style, aluminium, Colt AR15-type mag, made in house it holds 10-rounds! Magazines slide straight in with the release being a pull-back lug at the front of the well that engages an AR15-like retaining lug. The mag is a very sloppy fit, I also tried Colt and Magpul 20s and they were better, but not by a lot.

The 24” barrel is fluted for half its length and is 18mm in diameter apart from where it expands in to the re-enforce. Taking yet another cue from Savage it appears to be secured by a collar. My example was not threaded but the supplier told me all guns for sale will be. Useful to is the 1-9” rifling twist rate, meaning more leeway on bullet weight choice. For the test I ran, 50, 55, 56 and 62 and 69-grain loads.

For the test I fitted the MVP with a Harris BRS bipod, Vortex Viper 6.5-20x50 with target turrets in Tier 1 (ex TET) 30mm rings. Ammo went to 50-grain (V-MAX) Norma Varmint, 55-grain Winchester Varmint X, 56-grain GECO Express, 62-grain SP Hornady TAP Barrier and my Sierra 69-grain HPBT Match King loads running on Ram Shot TAC powder.

ASSUMPTIONS AND REALITY

The overly slim butt profile was not to my liking and given the MVP is also available in 308 Win I reckon it could be a real cheek biter! However, in 223 Rem and though not feeling how I like it I had no problems with stock weld, head alignment or general comfort! I did find the LOP a bit short, which forced me to push the scope all the way forward to suit. But the rifle is more than useable from the box even by a gorilla-armed shooter like me.

Filling the mag to 10-rounds did not do a lot for the feed and I found initially that reducing the payload to five made things easier. This is not helped by the seriously slack fit in the well. To be fair towards the end of my testing session the Mossberg clip begun to ease up a bit, it obviously needs some running in! Both the Colt alloy 20 and Magpul curved 20 fed far easier and also entered and removed better too.

The bolt is a bit a bit loose in its run, however, it locks up solid and is something you get used to. Likewise the firm bolt lift! One thing I would say is check the rifle over before you start shooting it as first results were variable, which I tracked down to the scope bases being slightly loose as were the action screws. SOP for a new gun I agree; but sometimes we can forget!

Tight and ready to go the MVP proved itself a shooter – it shot ¾” with the Norma and Winchester and a most pleasing ½” with the GECO and on the inch with the Hornady. Moving up to my 69-grain reload showed it open up to 1 ½ to 2”, which did not really surprise me. It’s plain to see it’s ammo-friendly within its twist rate and I reckon some experimentation with handloads would produce something rather special. The build with its 24” tube does lend itself to both varminting, small deer work and certainly targets. I can see some people buying this as opposed to an AR15 for Practical/Service use or just as an accurate paper puncher.

OK there are a some things I do not like such as the overly slim butt profile and the rather slack magazine fit. But others I do – well presented and finished, common box mag feed, adjustable trigger, versatile rifling twist and price, which is sub £700.

PRICE:  £640
CONTACT:  Saddlery & Gunroom, 01959 573089, www.mossberg.com

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

  • Mossberg MPV Predator rifle - image {image:count}

    click on image to enlarge

gun
features

  • Name: Mossberg MVP Varmint
  • Calibre: 5.56x45/223 Rem
  • Capacity : 10 (any AR magazine)
  • Length : 43”
  • Twist rate : 1-9”
  • Weight : 7 ¾ lbs
  • Stock : laminate BR-style
  • Trigger: Adjustable

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