[SHOT 2019] STEYR MONOBLOC rifle of the year?

    The Steyr Monobloc was one of the things I was most excited to see at this year’s SHOT.  While I don’t feel that having a monolithic barrel and action will offer any great gains in accuracy, repeatability or reliability I do feel that Steyr is pushing the envelope forward.  JFK’s “We choose to go to the moon” speech comes to mind, “Not because it is easy, but because it is hard.”  And like going to the moon this one rifle will likely not be the pinnacle of this technology, but rather lead to other innovations in the future.  Even putting all that aside it is one elegant looking firearm.

    Notice the seamless transition between barrel and action.

    This feat is made possible by using the hammer forging process (the reason Steyrs all have a swirl pattern in their barrels) in which the barrel blank is placed around a precision mandrel and hammers press the barrel into correct shape with 50 tons of force per hammer.  Here is a link to an old TFB article with more information on the hammer forging process. https://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2016/10/18/chf/

    Here are the specifications from Steyr:

    Steyr Arms Rifle Specifications

    Model: Steyr Arms MONOBLOC
    Purpose: Hunting
    Operation: Bolt-action
    Magazine type/capacity: Detachable steel box, four rounds
    Barreled Receiver: Cold-hammer-forged one-piece with 22-inch barrel
    Caliber: .308 Win., .30-’06 Spr. (.270 Win., 7x64mm and 8x57mm coming later 2019)
    Safety: Tang-mounted hand-cocking system
    Trigger type: Detachable single set trigger
    Stock material/type: Synthetic with aluminum bedding block
    Checkering: None; leather inserts
    Weight, empty: 8 lbs., 4.8 ozs.
    Overall length: 42.3 inches
    Included accessories: Owner’s manual
    MSRP: $5,250

    In case you missed it the forend, cheek piece and the grip are real leather inserts.  The grip is contoured for a right-hander and was extremely comfortable.


    Steyr has also continued their trend of providing more suitable offerings for the competitive precision rifle shooter.  Last year they introduced their first rifle chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor.  (shown below)

    Rifles for the competitive long-range shooter.


    This year Steyr is bringing out more stock options.  (Manners Composite Stocks in the middle and Mcmillan Fiberglass on the bottom)

    Steyr has worked with Manners Composite Stocks to offer a new stock option for the SBS.


    While the $5,250 MSRP for the Monobloc will likely relegate this particular rifle to safe queen status I am excited to see where else this technology will be applied.

    For more information on Steyr’s products visit their website http://www.steyrarms.com