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In case some of you dealers haven't noticed, Sigarms has become a major player in the imported rifle arena. Last year their parent company, SIG (Swiss Industrial Co.), purchased Blaser, thus Sigarms became the exclusive source here in the States for this unique, straight-pull rifle from Germany.
Already the importer of the Sauer 90 line of bolt-action centerfire rifles (SIG had purchased Sauer a number of years ago), Sigarms now had two prestigious German-made rifles in their stable for distribution here.
Being a world-class firearms manufacturer in their own right, and with military contracts slowly drying up, SIG decided to produce a bolt-action sporting rifle of their own. Enter early this year the SHR970. Don't ask me what the cryptic designation stands for, but I do know that at $499 retail, it's by far the most inexpensive centerfire rifle to offer barrel/caliber interchangeability. Not only that, the rifle comes with a free hard case suitable for air travel!
I had a chance to examine and shoot the 970 recently and it's quite an interesting gun. Unlike conventional actions where the bolt locks up with the receiver, the 970's three forward lugs engage abutments inside the barrel. On designs such as this, the receiver is a non-stressed component that serves only as a place to store cartridges, hang a trigger, and keep the bolt in alignment as it moves through the feeding, extraction, and ejection cycles. In other words, once the bolt is in battery, the receiver isn't really needed.

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