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Bravo Company USA has been providing quality AR-15 parts for years. Their BCMGUNFIGHTER charging handle adorns many of the finest AR rifles ever built. Several companies turn to Bravo Company when they want proven parts that are rugged, simple and designed with the operator in mind. It is easy to forget that they also build complete rifles. The same practical mindset underlying their parts manufacturing also goes into their upper assemblies and complete rifles.

Like most businesses, the weapons industry tends to go in cycles. Change is driven by demand, and today much of that demand is generated by competitive shooters. Right now, the strongest segment in the competitive market is 3-gun. It has been growing the last few years and continues to get stronger. Although 3-gun contestants use a wide variety of weaponry, when it comes to rifles, most opt for 18-inch precision models chambered in 5.56mm. Their popularity is well earned, and it’s rooted in the rifle’s venerable military and law enforcement heritage.

The Special Purpose Rifle (SPR) was designed to bridge the gap between the M4 carbine and the precision rifle chamber in 7.62x51mm, combining the range of the accuracy of the latter with the tactical dimensions of the former. The result, brought into service by the U.S. military, was the Mark 12 Mod 0 /1 Special Purpose Rifle. Essentially, SPR is an accurized AR using an 18-inch barrel with a twist rate optimized for heavier 5.56x45mm bullets. The new MK 262 cartridge (77-grain OTM) provides for better accuracy, longer range and a bit more energy on target. The SPR features a free-floated match-grade stainless barrels, as well as match chambers. It also carries a forend designed to facilitate optics as a primary sighting system and bipod usage. Nearly every U.S. special operations force employs SPRs in one form or another. So too do police SWAT teams. Sniper observer units often carry the SPR in conjunction with their bolt rifle. Some agencies even adopted SPRs as patrol rifles. It is an incredibly versatile platform, meeting the needs of many professionals and competitors alike.

Gun Details

Bravo Company USA’s Recce Precision-18 Mk2 is an exemplar of the accurized AR platform. It starts with Bravo’s machined lowers made from forged 7075-T6 aluminum. The ALG Defense ACT (Advanced Combat Trigger) provides a sharp, crisp and smooth trigger pull, while maintaining the traditional reliability of a stock unit. The mil-spec receiver extension uses a staked M4 lock nut. A mil-spec “H” buffer is used, along with a standard spring. The Mk2 also features an MOE-enhanced triggerguard and a BCMGUNFIGHTER Mod-1 pistol grip, whose reduced grip angle provides better ergonomics. A hinged plate allows for the storage of a battery and other small parts. For a stock, Bravo opted to use the company’s B5 Systems Enhanced SOPMOD. Along with a better cheekweld, the B5 stock provides ambidextrous QD sling swivels, standard sling slots and a large battery storage compartment.

The Precision-18 Mk2 utilizes a Midwest Industries SSG2 15-inch free-floating handguard. Its 1.5-inch outside diameter cuts down on weight and provides a smooth and slim purchase. The one-piece, T-marked, Mil-Std-1913 top rail provides plenty of space for scopes and night optics. The Mk2 also includes three 2.5-inch rails that can be mounted in several locations. One of the rails includes a QD sling slot, allowing versatile sling placement. The entire rail is dehorned for a comfortable hold and limited snagging.

The Precision-18 Mk2 comes equipped with a medium-weight contour 18-inch, 1-in-8-inch twist barrel forged from 410 stainless steel. It is button-rifled and hand-lapped, and has M4 feed ramp cuts. For maximal match-grade accuracy, the rifle features a Marine Corps SAM-R Match NATO chamber. The rifle’s low-profile gas block is covered by the extended rail. Capping the barrel is an A2 mounted suppressor-compatible BCMGUNFIGHTER Mod-1 compensator, which mitigates recoil, muzzle rise and flash. Rounding out the package is BCM’s mil-spec bolt group and BCMGUNFIGHTER charging handle.

Optics & Gear

Given the rifle’s heritage, I tested the Precision-18 Mk2 in a manner reflective of its role as an SPR or spotter’s rifle. Using a Global Defense Initiatives (GDI) P-Rom Model 25 mount I attached Leupold’s new Mark VI 3-18x44mm H58 scope. Previous testing has shown this scope to be just about perfect for a police marksman. The power range provides an adequate field of view at close range with plenty of power for precise identification.

The zero stop keeps things in place during transport. The glass is excellent, and the H58 is placed in the first focal plane for unparalleled versatility. The GDI mount fits easily and returns to zero well. With 25 minute of angle (MOA) elevation built in, it reaches beyond the range of any 5.56mm NATO cartridge. For backup sights, BCM provided a set of Troy Industries battle sights with BCM markings.

In order to facilitate a bipod, I moved one of the 2.5-inch rails rearward on the rail. Doing so brought to my attention a nice feature of the SSG rail: There is no need for internal spacers or proprietary nuts. Along the rail are tapped mounting holes, making for easy movement. The bipod used was my LRA light tactical bipod—one of the best bipods I’ve ever tested. Its design cradles the rifle, providing incredibly solid support with virtually no added weight.

Range Time

The whole point to a rifle like this is accuracy, particularly when using heavier bullets. There is simply no need for an 18-inch match barrel for typical work across the room. Having tested several similar designs, I was initially skeptical. AR design has evolved quite a bit, and even short-barreled guns can be quite accurate. But the Precision-18 Mk2 was a pleasant surprise. During chronographing, it put nearly everything it was fed into one ever-growing hole. When it came time for group testing, it proved just as solid. The best five-shot group measured 0.55 inches using a quintet of Hornady 75-grain TAP rounds. The real test, though, was a 10-shot group, and there was no disappointment there. Using RWS Target Elite Plus ammunition, I put 10 rounds at 100 yards into a space measuring 0.87 inches. Nine of the 10 rounds fell under 0.60 inches. And this was no benchrest shooting; I fired the Precision-18 Mk2 from prone, in the dirt, pressing the trigger as soon as the rifle fell back on target. Which reminds me, recoil with the Mk2 was minimal. Granted, 5.56mm is less than devastating, but it does produce movement, as a rule.

Firing from a solid prone, the Mk2 stayed almost completely in place, never once coming off target. The rifle-cradling LRA bipod contributed, too, reducing muzzle rise to a degree superior to that of bipods that one simply hinges to the bottom of a rifle. All in all, I found the Precision-18 Mk2 difficult to put down: It was truly a joy to shoot.

A good trigger certainly helps, and for a stock-feeling trigger, the ACT is very solid—crisp, predictable and entirely lacking in grit (though for this kind of rifle I would prefer a two-stage trigger). The B5 Enhanced stock facilitated a solid cheekweld and had very little play. It is simple and elegantly designed—kind of minimalist, yet practical. Shooting from prone, the less-angled grip took some getting used to, but in the long run it facilitates a straighter trigger pull. It did prove to point a bit better from off-hand and kneeling positions.

Many will prefer a larger diameter forend, but slimmer handguards like the Midwest SSG2 are my favorite, especially for unsupported shooting. I also prefer a clean, smooth surface for my off-hand. There is plenty of space to mount rails for lights, lasers and other gadgets. Not everyone accessorizes, however, so it’s nice Bravo kept the forend clean. I liked having the QD sling mount on the rail. I prefer having the mount placed near the receiver, and the adjustable rails made modification easy. The rails are very solid when attached, providing robust support for my LRA bipod. For those using a Harris bipod, Midwest provides a sling stud with the forend.

The medium-contour barrel balanced nicely and kept down the overall weight. It was really easy to maneuver this rifle in and around the truck, the shoot house and the range. Overall, the rifle is very well built, with solid and rugged parts and the gadgets kept to a minimum. Extraction was consistent, ejecting just about every piece of expended brass into a neat, little pile. The Precision-18 Mk2 is really about as reliable, consistent and accurate as a 5.56mm AR gets.

Final Notes

As accurate as this rifle was using the 77-grain bullets, it was no less accurate with 55- and 60-grain bullets. Nothing grouped over 1-inch at 100 yards, including the Winchester 55-grain FMJ ammunition. Nor did the rifle suffer from any reliability issues when shooting practice ammunition, polymer tips or solid designs. The Precision-18 Mk2 will shoot any typical duty round used today with the utmost accuracy and reliability. Having spent considerable time of late playing with buffers, springs and gas blocks, I enjoyed just lying down and shooting. Entirely mil-spec in design, the Mk2 accommodates any accessory you desire, including various suppressor designs. It is an excellent base platform and works like a dream right out of the box, which is just about all you can ask for from a precision-based production rifle. For more information, visit bravocompanyusa.com or call 877-272-8626.

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