I'm sure many of you have seen the Desert Tactical Arms SRS by now. It's graced the cover of just about every tactical rifle magazine out there at some point in the last couple years, and was even shown off on a recent Mythbusters episode. Just about every rifle forum out there has also seen countless posts by people drooling over it. It is a bullpup bolt action rifle that allows fast and accurate cartridge conversions. I own a 338LM and 308 conversion, and have fired a combined round count somewhere around 800rnds with them. I'll spend more time talking about the benefits of a setup like this in a later review segment, but today we are going to focus on trying to see if the marketing hype actually holds true in regard to this rifles return to zero capability!
The format for this testing is pretty simple. I will verify the rifles zero, and then begin a 1/2" dot drill at a distance of 100yds. I will fire one shot, then remove the barrel from the rifle. I'll then re-seat the barrel and torque to spec, and fire another shot. Then the process will be repeated for every subsequent shot on the target.
The barrel in the rifle is a standard factory 22" DTA chambered in 308win. I have a YHM Phantom QD 338 suppressor mounted. The ammo is handloaded 175SMK seated 10 thousandths off the lands, 44.5gr of varget, CCI200 primer, 1x fired winchester brass that was FL sized in a Forster die.
The results of this test absolutely floored me. The consistency of this design is absolutely awe-inspiring. For 20 shots, I removed the barrel from the rifle before taking the next shot, and it never strayed more than 1/2 MOA from the POA. This is within my own limits as a shooter, so it is difficult to tell what the rifle is actually capable of. I tossed one for sure, which I re-shot, other than that, I felt pretty good about the rest of them. Absolutely amazing!
After I finished the dot drill return-to-zero testing, I moved to 300yds and shot a 5 shot group just for the heck of it. I'll be doing more long range testing in a later segment on the DTA, but it is certainly worth noting that I turned in a 1.7" group at 300yds. The rifle is capable of much more than that as I've proven in the past. The wind got to me a little bit during this string as you can plainly see, but even so... 1.7" at 300yds is nothing to cry about.
This is just a teaser of the DTA SRS's capabilities. This will be a several part series that will bring the SRS's most intimate secrets to light. Tune in next time, where we go "under the skin" with the SRS and see just what makes this little gem of a rifle so capable!