Law enforcement countersnipers, military personnel and those engaged in executive protection have always needed compact precision rifles built for concealment. Urban engagements are generally within 300 yards, where there’s no need for rifles with longer barrels or fixed stocks. I’ve deployed precision rifles with 16-inch barrels that were perfect for most police work, and there is nothing like a folding stock to make it easier to store the gun in the trunk of your cruiser or in a backpack. This is the kind of rifle that can fit in a sleeve on the back of your plate carrier or in a discreet bag.
Of course, nothing says “stealth” like a sound suppressor, and my affinity for sound suppression on police precision rifles is pretty well known. In fact, my police department was the first law enforcement agency in the Salt Lake Valley to deploy a completely suppressed sniper unit. Why? You can train just like you deploy—without hearing protection. If you take a shot, your partner can still hear and you can both communicate. Sound suppressors also help reduce recoil, allowing you to confirm your first hit and quickly make a second shot if needed. You also won’t give away your position. Most suppressors are made of lightweight materials these days, all but eliminating point-of-impact shifts. The only disadvantage of sound suppressors is their length, but thankfully many manufacturers are coming up with practical solutions.
Several companies are making compact precision rifles for discreet operations these days, and one of the newest, the Concealable Sniper Rifle, or CSR, comes from Surgeon Rifles, a trusted name in the rifle-building world.
Surgeon Rifles was one of the first to improve on the Remington 700 action design—the most popular choice among bolt rifles—and remains a leader in the field. In fact, Surgeon’s actions are the first choice for many custom rifle builders and competitors. These actions are stronger, straighter and incredibly consistent. They’re also some of the smoothest and fastest rifle actions you can use. Surgeon rifles themselves are precise instruments, yet they have withstood the most challenging competitions and combat conditions imaginable. The Surgeon CSR is a perfect example of the kind of accuracy you can achieve from a custom-grade rifle built for covert deployments.
- RELATED STORY: 7 Must-Have Accessories For Sniper Rifles
The Surgeon CSR starts with Surgeon’s 591SA-R action, which features an integral recoil lug as well as a 20-MOA scope rail. The spiral-fluted bolt is laser straight and includes a Surgeon shroud, cocking piece, firing pin and bolt knob. The bolt handle is threaded, allowing users to choose different bolt knobs to suit their needs. The Remington-style extractor and ejector use a Surgeon spring and bolt stop.
Mated to the action is a 16-inch, stainless steel, match-grade barrel with 5R rifling. The barrel is capped with an AWC PSR muzzle brake, which works well on its own and can also accept AWC PSR sound suppressors.
The barreled action is installed in Accuracy International’s AX chassis system, which has been the standard for drop-in stocks for years. Its aluminum design eliminates the need for bedding and can be adjusted as needed to fit into your local area of operation. This chassis system uses five- and 10-round AICS magazines that are rugged and reliable.
Starting from the front, the octagonal AX forend features KeyMod slots along each side, making it easy to attach rails and accessories as needed. My test rifle came with a short forward rail on top for mounting night-vision devices and another rail on the bottom for a bipod. A side rail with a quick-detach (QD) sling cup was also included for a white light or laser-aiming device.
Just behind the forend is a polymer area molded for a secure grip. In front of the enlarged triggerguard is an ambidextrous, paddle-style magazine release. The trigger is a Jewell unit expertly set for a 2.5-pound pull weight.
- RELATED STORY: 6 Russian Sniper Rifles From WWII and Beyond
At the rear of the chassis is a folding buttstock that locks solidly in place and is adjustable for both length of pull and cheek height. The buttstock offers more QD sling mounting options as well as a stiff rubber buttpad and a hook for your support hand during prone shooting.
My test Surgeon CSR rifle came in a full-sized hard case along with one 5-round AICS magazine. For optics, my rifle came with a Leupold 3-18x44mm Mark 6 scope using a Horus H59 reticle. Mounted in a set of Badger Ordnance rings, the scope came zeroed and leveled. A Harris bipod was also installed using a set of LaRue Tactical rail mount.
Like what you’re reading? Check out the rest of this article in ‘Tactical Weapons’ February/March 2017. For information on how to subscribe, please email subscriptions@