[SHOT 2016] Desert Tech MDR news/update

    All caliber fit into the same chassis. .308 pictured above, .223 below.

    Today at SHOT show, I was able to take a look at the Desert Tech MDR in both 7.62×51 and 5.56×45.  Desert Tech was taking orders on them currently, so they should head out to dealers soon.  Some salient information:  There is a handguard that will go around a 2-piece OSS suppressor for the 7.62 version.  Although Desert tech makes in-house suppressors, they are optimized for their bolt action rifles.

    .308 OSS suppressor under handguard

    .308 OSS suppressor under handguard

    They are fully ambidextrous, and ejection can be changed from right to left handed simply by swapping a panel on either side of the firearm.  The panel contains the ejector, and cases eject forward from either side you select.  The panels do not need the rifle to be disassembled in order to change sides, they have their own tabs that can be depressed, and simply swapped over.  The charging handle is non-reciprocating as well.

    rear tabs on the ejector panel that allow it to be swapped

    rear tabs on the ejector panel that allow it to be swapped

     

    The ejection port on the panel was welded shut on this show floor example

    The ejection port on the panel was welded shut on this show floor example

    There is no need to change out the lower receiver/chassis for 7.62×51, 5.56×45, or .300 Blackout (coming this summer).  To change caliber, one needs to simply change the barrel, bolt, and magazine well adaptor.  P1191106

    All caliber fit into the same chassis. .308 pictured above, .223 below.

    All calibers fit into the same chassis. 7.62 pictured above, 5.56 below.

    Desert tech's in-house red dot pictured

    Desert tech’s in-house red dot pictured (DT 1x Reflex)

    The rail section in the middle is attached to the gas block of the free floated barrel. It is to be used with their 1x reflex sight

    The rail section in the middle is attached to the gas block of the free floated barrel. It is to be used with their 1x reflex sight

    Also new from Desert Tech is their own reflex sight, the DT 1X Reflex, which was mounted on the MDR.  Another MDR had an EOtech on it, and a lower 1/3 co-witness was able to be achieved with the irons. DMR and compact (registered SBR) versions of the MDR (micro-dynamic rifle, for those who are curious) are on the way, as well as an optional match/competition trigger.  The current trigger was a very good 2-stage trigger that broke cleanly.  I was impressed with it as far as bullpup triggers go.  There are 2 options for mag releas: one on the front of the magwell, and another forward of the triggerguard.  All controls are fully ambidextrous.  We look forward to reviewing one in the future, as well as taking a good look at the internals when we get the chance.  P1191117

    Here’s the stats from Desert Tech:

    5.56×45:

    Weight: 7.3lb

    Twist: 1/8

    7.62×51:

    Weight: 7.1lb

    Twist: 1/10

    .300 BLK:

    Weight: 7.3lb

    Twist: 1/6

    All rifles are 26″ long with a 16″ barrel.  (I assume the extra weight in the 5.56 and .300 is due to the mag well adaptor.)

    Thanks to Desert Tech for their time in answering my questions!

    Rusty S.

    Having always had a passion for firearms, Rusty S. has had experience in gunsmithing, firearms retail, hunting, competitive shooting, range construction, as an IDPA certified range safety officer and a certified instructor. He has received military, law enforcement, and private training in the use of firearms. He is fortunate enough to have access to class 3 weaponry as well.


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