Despite the general degradation of quality from the companies under Freedom Group’s control, the Remington 700 is still a damn fine rifle for shooters who want to spread their wings for the first time and jump into the deep end of the rifle range. It’s solidly built and accurate enough, but there are some serious differences between the average Remington 700 and a high quality bolt action rifle. The folks at MDT wanted to design a chassis that would allow those with an existing Remington 700 to squeeze every drop of accuracy out of their rifle without breaking the bank, and what they came up with was the MDT LSS (“Light Sniper System”) chassis . . .
With an existing rifle, the only thing that an average person can do to improve the accuracy is to swap out the chassis. The garden variety Remington 700 stock doesn’t free float the barrel, and the plastic mounting area doesn’t provide enough rigidity to keep the gun from shifting around under recoil. Previously, if you wanted to solve those issues you needed to either modify your existing stock using bedding blocks and mucking around with fiberglass, or buy a brand new stock for a significant chunk of change. But the LSS fixes all of those issues easily for under $400.
Last year I reviewed the first offering from MDT: their TAC21 chassis. The swap from a rubber stock to a rigid metal chassis turned my mediocre 700-AAC-SD into a lean mean one-hole-punchin’ machine, and I was over the moon. There were, however, some issues — namely the complexity of assembling the firearm in the stock, the weight of the thing, and the reported propensity of the action to wobble in the chassis (the scope was bolted to the chassis, not the action). It also cost a pretty penny, coming in around $700. MDT wanted to come up with something that fixed those issues in a way that was truly novel, and their LSS hits the nail on the head.
The very first thing you notice about the LSS is that it’s a standard drop-in replacement stock. With the TAC21 you needed to remove the trigger assembly to get the rifle in the chassis, but with the LSS, all that’s required is to bolt it in place using the action screws. No drifting pins out, no losing springs from the trigger, and no more than 30 seconds spent making it all happen.
The second major improvement is that there’s no longer a need to mount the scope to the chassis. The action is available for direct mounting, greatly reducing the ability for things to get off-kilter and wobble about under recoil. It does mean you’ll need to purchase mounting accessories to put some glass on your gun, but it’s one less thing to worry about when you are trying to put holes in something 700 yards away.
In terms of features, the LSS has the field beat. The chassis accepts Accuracy International magazines, the gold standard in reliability for bolt action guns and widely available (although not exactly cheap). The detachable mags extend the ammunition capacity of the gun and also make it easy to quickly replenish the firearm when 10 rounds just isn’t enough. There’s also a sling swivel stud to attach a bipod. Or I guess you could use it for a sling. But who does that anyway?
While the gun doesn’t have the full length top rail which makes the TAC21 attractive, there’s still hope for low light shooters. The chassis comes drilled for a bridge section which goes over the barrel and provides a small section of rail for night vision optics and other accessories.
At the rear, MDT has implemented the same features that made their TAC-21 such a hit. Instead of having a proprietary stock design, they put an AR-15 receiver extension adapter into the stock and let the shooter choose their favorite stock. I’ve kitted this version out with a mil-spec buffer tube and Magpul MOE stock, but you can use whatever stock you want so long as it fits the AR-15 platform. They’ve also designed the chassis to take a standard AR-15 grip as well.
There’s one complaint I have about this system: there’s no cutout for the locking plate. M4 style AR-15 rifles have a locking plate on the rear of the rifle to keep the buffer tube from spinning around. The LSS doesn’t have a hole available to make that happen, so the rifle relies on the friction of the castle nut to keep collapsible stocks in place. There’s an adapter plate available from MDT for A1/A2 style stocks and the locking plate, but that doesn’t come with the standard stock.
Honestly though, I don’t mind.
Out on the range, things get really awesome. The LSS chassis makes the Remington 700 feel like it’s supposed to feel, and shoot as accurately as the barrel will allow. I saw the same improvement in accuracy that I saw from the TAC21 chassis, and the more svelte profile combined with the weight savings makes the gun much easier to tote around.
I’m completely satisfied with the MDT LSS chassis. For just a hair under $400 they have produced an exceptional chassis which improves the accuracy of the Remington 700 and provides many new options for shooters to kit out their firearm. Not only that, it looks amazing. The only thing that would make it better is if it accepted AR-10 magazines, but as-is I’m happy as a clam.
MDT LSS Rifle Chassis for Remington 700 Rifles
Price: $399 (short action) / $449 (long action)
Also Available: Savage SA, Tikka T3, Mossberg MVP, Model 7
Weight: 1.6 lbs.
Ratings (out of five):
Feel & Function * * * * *
The use of AR-15 parts allows the end user to configure their rifle to their own preferences.
Ease of Use * * * * *
Drop straight in, strap on a stock, and you are good to go. Five minute job, tops.
Overall * * * * *
I think I might have to drop the rating on the TAC21 chassis based on how well they executed this new LSS. And there’s no way that they are getting it back from me.