CZ 455 Meets AR: The Covenanter Arms BR-22

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As my search for a match-grade rimfire bolt action rifle continues in earnest, it was fortuitous that a regular TFB reader sent in a tip about a new setup from Covenanter Arms in New South Wales, Australia. Our friends in the Southern Hemisphere have developed a chassis for the CZ 455/452 rimfire rifles that allows for the use of AR15 stocks, handguards and grips. My short list of rifles includes the CZ455 Trainer, but I had never considered a platform with the ability to use AR buttstocks.

I talked to the good people at Covenanter about the BR-22 currently in development. They write:

We saw that there is a gap in the marketplace – we don’t know of any other bolt action rimfire stock that can accept standard AR-15 buttstocks (via buffer tube), pistolgrip, and free-floating handguard. So, rather then building something from the ground up, we’ve taken the tried and tested CZ 455 (also 452) action to use as our base.

Covenanter Arms BR-22

Covenanter Arms BR-22

The barrel is a standard CZ barrel with sleeve. The plan for production is to ship with the varmint barrel, as their standard barrels look too small within the ar-15 handguard. The rifle can still be interchanged with the CZ 455 .17HMR or .22Mag barrels if required.The trigger group is based on the CZ 455 trigger group, with some minor changes to fit the chassis system.

Due to regulations in Australia, we will be primarily shipping whole rifles in Australia. However, our plan is to export to the core chassis system (with everything required to upgrade a CZ 455) to the USA as soon as possible, but we’re still exploring partnership opportunities here.

We sometimes bemoan the draconian gun laws found in some parts of the United States, but shooters in Australia suffer far worse. I won’t pretend to know the particulars, but it’s safe to safe that most semiautomatic guns are heavily restricted. In response, Covenanter Arms has also developed a pump action .22LR AR-styled rifle. The production runs of the PR-22 rifles are set to debut any day now.

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Covenanter Arms PR-22

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Covenanter Arms PR-22

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Covenanter Arms PR-22

Keep up the great work, guys.


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Covenanter Arms – http://www.covenanterarms.com.au

New South Wales, Australia

info@covenanterarms.com.au



Pete

LE – Science – OSINT.
On a mission to make all of my guns as quiet as possible.
Pete.M@staff.thefirearmblog.com


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  • Pete – TFB Writer

    I’ll start it off with a question:

    I want a match-grade .22LR Bolt Action. I am not looking to piece one together, but I will entertain custom builds.

    No set pricepoint.

    Suggestions?

    • Dave

      Anschutz MPR 64

      • Pete – TFB Writer

        I was ready to pull the trigger on a 64 action, but they don’t have Match chambers. I was thinking of going with a 54 action in a bedded bench rest stock.

    • PK

      No price range, even?

      • Pete – TFB Writer

        No “realistic” price range. Anschutz is definitely on the list.

        • PK

          Find a dealer somewhere and lay hands on a few models, find what you like best, and order one for yourself. That’s my suggestion. Remember: buy once, cry once.

      • Darkpr0

        I tend to agree. If Anschutz does not make something satisfactorily match-grade, then your expectations are pretty out there.

    • Goody

      Hasn’t this been going on for a while now? Get a high end Anschutz, or take a Savage/CZ/custom action to a smith. The smith will professionally fit a stock in the design which you require, also a custom barrel.

      If you have never shot an accurate 22 before, you have something to look forward to: watching the projectile dropping into the target through your scope.

      • Pete – TFB Writer

        Yes. A long time. I just need to pull the trigger.

        Pun intended.

  • PK

    This chassis is an interesting idea, and I can see the appeal. If similar were done for the 5.56x45mm CZ 527, which also converted the bottom metal to holding AR mags, it would be an instant sale as far as I’m concerned. Those rifles are substantially more accurate than I expected.

    • Drew Coleman

      I don’t think the rifle could feed from STANAG mags without either modding the mags or the bolt. Take a look at what they had to do to the Mossberg MVP to be able to do that

      • PK

        A man can dream. You are entirely correct, though.

        • Drew Coleman

          I would just be happy with a bolt action in 223 that had a 1:8 or 1:7 twist barrel that I wouldn’t have to have custom made.

          • PK

            It wasn’t too long ago that 1-in-12″ was the norm for bolt action 5.56x45mm guns. At least that’s no longer the case! 1-in-9″ still isn’t the best for VLD bullets, but it’s better in terms of options.

          • Anonymoose

            It’s actually worse in terms of options. 1:7 will do EVERYTHING from 40gr to 110gr. Overstabilization is a myth made up by cheap-asses defending their selling of 1:9 barrels in their commercial-spec M4forgeries. 1:9 will stabilize XM193 and XM855 (which 1:12 won’t, but there are certain 62gr bullets that work in 1:12 iirc) and up to 69gr HPBTs and 75gr flat-bases and Hornady TAPs. 1:8 is pretty much good for anything as well, up to the new Barnes 85gr, except for M856 tracers. You only really need 1:7 to stabilize M856-type tracers (and maybe those 110gr subsonics), and if there’s a chance of you shooting XM856 tracers or 77gr stuff, then for sure go with the 1:7. Most people will only ever shoot 55gr and the occasional XM855 (when it’s cheap and they’re outdoors) through their AR, so 1:9 isn’t that big of a drawback, and with bolt-actions the assumption is that you’re going to be using it for varminting, in which case a lot of varmint bullets are 55gr or lower.

          • PK

            The only concern I’ve ever had about a twist too fast is thin-jacketed bullets coming apart shortly past the muzzle. I’ve only had it happen a few times, but it does happen.

          • Anonymoose

            I forgot I read somewhere that you can get 77gr SMKs to work in a 1:9 if you handload specifically for it, but factory ammo won’t be properly stabilized.

          • jonp

            You can

          • Gary Kirk

            What’s the rate on the Remington 700 vtr? My buddy has one and for some reason or another, I wanna say it is not 1/9.. Could be wrong though, have been before, will be again sometime..

      • Phil Hsueh

        In that case, what could work is to build an extended fixed mag, like what you see on an SKS and SMLEs(?). While feeding anything more than a10 round mag via stripper clips might be a pain it’s better than nothing and certainly better than a 5 shot mag.

    • iksnilol

      Mauser action, would’a need to mill out the receiver to be able to hold STANAG mags.

      • De Facto

        Is there something inherently difficult about designing a mauser action (or any bolt action, really) to feed from STANAG mags by default? I’ve heard tell of Enfields converted to shoot 7.62×39 and feed from AK magazines. (Never actually seen one, but I like the idea..)

        I ask because I love bolt actions and the only thing I’d change about them is the magazine capacity. Loading is not my favorite activity when I pay by the half hour at a local range =

        • iksnilol

          Nothing inherent about it, it’s just that they are usually made for integral (or detachable) single stack mags.

          Basically, try pushing a 30-06 shell in a .308 chamber. Won’t fit, why? Not enough space. Same thing if you tried shoving an AR-15 20 rounder into a CZ-527.

          I agree with you, I’d love AK mags in a CZ-527

          • Gary Kirk

            That would probably be easier to make happen..

        • Gary Kirk

          Relatively large circumference bolt face against fairly narrow gap between the feed lips on a stanag mag.. And not wanting to machine the bolt down. Would be my only guess

      • Anonymoose

        You could fabricate one of those mag adapters like they use on AKs.

        • iksnilol

          Jupp, but I believe you’d still need to mill out a bit of the receiver so the mag can get high enough for the bolt to strip rounds.

          • Gary Kirk

            And most likely would have to do just a bit of machining to the actual bolt as well.. Maybe not, with the conical receiver and controlled round feed, if you could get the top of the mag in just the right spot for the round edge of the bolt to interface with the cartridges in the mag. But that’s an awful small window between the feed lips on a stanag mag. Would be a very small portion of the bolt face trying to get ahold of the cartridge..

  • Harry’s Holsters

    The pump gun is awesome for Australia! I don’t know how well the AR chasis would sell here though. Now if they made it for a ruger american it may make waves.

  • Drew Coleman

    I didn’t know it until now, but i want that. Must have.

  • Hoplopfheil

    Looks a bit like the Excel arms 22 designs.

  • Gary Kirk

    Very interesting, I’m digging the first pic with the heavy barrel, and is that a thread protector on the end? =-O. I mean my 10/22 is about as accurate as I’ll ever need “NOW” (bout .5 MOA @ 75 yards).. But would love a bolt gun, especially if I can run the same stock/fore end that’s on my groundhog gun.. And the CZs are one I’ve been looking over for awhile. As well as what someone else mentioned, make this style chassis for the Ruger American and your golden.. Cause we all know the aftermarket is going to explode for those..

  • SlowJoeCrow

    I like the idea of a .22 chassis system as a miniature precision rifle. How about one that works with a left handed action with either a CZ 452 or Savage E receiver(mk II or 93)?

  • uisconfruzed

    I’d like one for their name alone.
    How much does one of these puppies weigh?
    I’d like a quality 10″ barreled .22LR AR upper for my SBR lower.