Chapuis Armes “ROLS”: New Straight Pull Bolt Action Rifle

French firearms manufacturer Chapuis Armes has joined the small list of European companies who offer straight pull bolt action rifles. They’ve recently introduced a new rifle called ROLS. As the manufacturer states, the rifle was in development for 6 years. It is not just the next gun which will try to get a piece from Blaser R8‘s market pie. It actually has some unique mechanical features. The most interesting is the new locking mechanism of the rifle.

The patented locking system is called CLS (Chapuis Locking System). It appears that the bolt doesn’t rotate. Instead, the pivoting locking pieces located inside the barrel extension are driven by the bolt carrier to the area behind the locking shoulder of the bolt. So these locking pieces kind of wedge themselves between the bolt head and the barrel extension. At least it looks to be so judging from the manufacturer’s description, the video and images below.

Here is how Chapuis Armes describes the locking system of the ROLS rifle:

The bearing surface of the locking lugs is 260 square millimeters, making it one of the largest and most reliable on the market, as proven by
resistance tests applying pressures well over 8500 bars (123,000 PSI).

• THE BOLT LOCKS INTO THE BARREL

A locking ring, inserted into a recess machined into the
barrel behind the chamber, bears 7 locking lugs, which tilt from front to back, to lock/unlock the bolt head.

• AN UNBREAKABLE LOCKING SYSTEM

A locking sleeve around the bolt slides on the bolt, controlled by the bolt handle, which acts as a lever to control its movement. It provides a fully secured locking system of the bolt head.
The seven locking lugs swing to the “open” or to “closed” position, thus locking or unlocking the bolt. They are controlled by this sleeve. Once this sleeve is locked into place, it swings the lugs into the “closed” position.

The ROLS rifle also has a distinctive “dog leg” bolt handle. Chapuis Armes offers the rifle in one of the following calibers: .243 Winchester, .30-06 Springfield, .270 Win, .308 Win, 9.3x62mm, .300 Win Mag, 7mm Rem Mag and .375 H&H Magnum. The rifle feeds from a rotary magazine of 4 or 3 round capacity (depending on the caliber).

The barrel can be relatively quickly changed by unscrewing a single screw. Another interesting solution is that the barrel assembly rests on metal rather than wood.

The scope mounts directly on the barrel (instead of the receiver), which should give a better accuracy and repeatability for such system with an easily removable barrel.

It looks like the company really takes pride into this rifle. They even launched a separate website dedicated to this gun.

As you can see this rifle has a lot of new and interesting mechanical design features. The downside is that most of those features are not yet field proven. So it is always a kind of dilemma: whether you want to have a new mechanical wonder or you’d better stick to a proven action.



Hrachya H

I was born and currently live in Armenia, where I work in a family business of leather goods manufacturing. Being a retired sergeant of my country’s armed forces and a lifelong firearms enthusiast, I always enjoy studying firearms design, technology and history. Also my knowledge of Russian allows me to translate and make Russian/Soviet/Combloc small arms related information available for the English speaking audience.
Should you need to contact me, feel free to shoot me a message at TFBHrachyaH@gmail.com


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  • Hans

    I would be interested to see how the action performs in a precision rifle.

    • mikee

      Yea, so would I?. The engineering is interesting. The marketing hype is bullshit!

      • Julio

        Where’s the marketing hype?
        I agree about the engineering though, and when you consider Blaser’s response to their customer’s requirement for a detachable magazine -a detachable trigger group, no less!- it’s no small coup for a small outfit like Chapuis to design a system that is both more practical and more affordable. Chapuis genuinely take pride in their products, too, from the bespoke shotguns and double rifles they make to series production models like this.

        • ostiariusalpha

          Don’t forget their revolvers. I’m not sure that they are quite at the level of the original Manurhin’s, but they’re at least as nice as the new Korths.

        • mikee

          Julio – AN UNBREAKABLE LOCKING SYSTEM etc., Being familiar with the Blaser design (Chapius being almost an exact copy), the engineering claims for the Chapuis have to be treated with caution. The Blaser design has never been adopted by the long range or benchrest crowd even though the Blaser LRS 1 (no longer made) was made to compete. Replacement parts will be difficult to obtain if Chapius marketing is anything like Blaser. Try getting spare magazines for Blaser LRS 1?

          • Tassiebush

            I suspect there are two obstacles to the adoption of them by long range and benchrest shooters despite their pretty great performance. The lack of strong primary extraction probably means it’s not ideal for tailored handloaded ammo and the way the design locks into the barrel probably puts serious constraints on any custom barrels so replacement barrels would just be other blaser barrels

          • mikee

            Spot on! Also: 1) Blasers LRS 1’s are very rough on brass during extraction; 2) The Blaser bolt must be cycled rapidly to properly engage the firing mechanism or else you risk a misfire; 3) barrels are proprietory to Blasers and to “make” one by a skilled rifle smith is prohibitively expensive.

    • Look at the Blaser Tactical 2 and LRS 2. Also the Blaser R8’s with the GRS stock is a reasonable precision rifle setup.

      —marky

  • mechamaster

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e999e71eaaa4f5bcb3c80f68b9236a741b628c4236e0ec9de2bff9b025ea8c9d.gif

    From the promotional video, the bolt head is work in similar principle like the Blazer R93 bolt-lug.
    The R93 is using 14-lug radial collet in a 360 degrees groove ( and it is attached in the bolt head ).
    But the ROLS prefer to added the 7-lug radial collet in the chamber instead in the bolt head.

    • Tassiebush

      The resemblance to blaser is certainly strong! This actually reminds me of those early revolver models with front loading cylinders and teatfire cartridges in the way that it seems to be designed to get around patents with the collet location however that’s not to imply that this is in any way inferior or just a knock off.
      It’s fascinating seeing this space in the market take off! I’m curious about when someone is eventually going to create an economical straight pull aimed at the market end that guns like tikka t3, Sauer 100 or ruger hawkeye occupy. It might even happen at a lower level.

      • ostiariusalpha

        I wonder how easy this is to clean or repair though, versus the Blaser where you can just pull the bolt out and disassemble the collet apparatus.

        • mechamaster

          maybe harder than Blaser. ^^

        • Tassiebush

          Yeah I hope it’s removable yet strangely hard to lose.

      • mechamaster

        From the production and extra complexity, it’s more in the expensive side I think.
        Maybe something like entry level Browning Maral or Merkel Helix in $1500 price range or less.

        • Michael Gallagher

          For a less expensive straight pull option, the Browning Acera can be found out there in good used condition for a lot less. They seemed to like that rifle a lot more in Europe than they did in the USA. I’ve got one in .30-06 and love it. Definitely gets noticed at deer camps.

        • Tassiebush

          I tend to think a cheap one would look like a no frills maral. I think the helix is still quite up there in price.
          Basically I reckon the best contender for an economical straight pull would be based on a semi auto action with a well placed handle. It could never be as cheap as a turnbolt due to complexity but it could be a lot cheaper than the current options.

  • zellgato

    Kind of liking that it doesn’t seem? to be the type with “automatic move forward” features. That always bugs me in most of the more well known new straight pulls… Though since you don’t have to twist it, I kind of dislike the low side pull as opposed to a barrel pull like some of the old ones

  • MPWS

    French inventiveness at its best; much like Famas. That locking interface, if kept clean should be reliable. It is stressed mostly in compression which is the most favorable mode, lot better than shear on conventional bolt lugs.

  • gunsandrockets

    Meh, in terms of innovation/speed I like the Browning Maral better.

    But I do like how compact and sealed up they managed to make the ROLS.

  • When I first saw the headline, I assumed this was direct R93 copy. Blaser has dropped the R93 for the R8 so I suspect they are not defending 93 patents.

    The resemblance between this and the Blaser is striking. This coming from a certified Blaser fan boy. Since I am knee keep in the Blaser systems, it’s not economical for me to consider changing. But if this is considerably cheaper on the street, is as crazy accurate as the Blasers, maybe they will sell well?

    US shooters who want hyper-accuracy with changeable calibers lose their minds when they see Blaser prices.

    Interesting development.

    -Marky

    • OK. I just watched the promo video. The group they shot on the indoor range…flat out sucks rocks. If a Blaser shot that, a Blaser owner would behaving a fit. And rightfully so.

      Hope that was a prop and not a real test target.

      —Marky

      • 3800 Euros.

        Not for that group. No way. No how. That better be a prop target or this will fail hard.

        Marky

  • iksnilol

    French laser copy with a crappy mag capacity, yeah, count me out.

    • Dougscamo

      Yeah…and I hated the music….

  • Keiichi

    Neat.

  • Red McCloud

    I’m about 10 seconds away from beating my skull in. I was literally designing a straight pull bolt action that used a bolt almost exactly like this one as my debut firearm design, but of course, someone does it first always. This has happened like 6 times now and I’m starting to get a LITTLE tired of it.

    But screw it I’m gonna design the rifle anyways. AND I’m gonna make it inexpensive.

    • AD

      Ouch, that’s tough. Well, good luck.

    • Goody

      Just dodge the (probably Blaser) patents, make it in America for under $4k (more like 2) and you’ll be fine. Hell Blaser probably won’t even care about an exact copy if it isn’t at their level of finish, since it won’t cut into their market.

    • Wow!

      It is is an issue all inventors run into. The solution is simply to build it, test it, figure out how to improve it and market it. If sound, capitalism will favor whoever produces the superior product, not necessarily the first.

  • gusto

    Not only a blaser copy in looks, what about the name Rols? they even say it like Rolls Royce

  • Richard Lutz

    Don’t get any dirt, mud or sand in it or it will likely jam solid.