Field Test: Del-Ton’s Extreme Duty 316 Rifle
I have to admit, I was a little surprised–and pleased–when I opened the gun case and discovered that the Del-Ton...
I have to admit, I was a little surprised–and pleased–when I opened the gun case and discovered that the Del-Ton Industries Extreme Duty 316 rifle I’d just received had open sights. I like open sights, started out shooting with them, but hadn’t shot a rifle with them for years. The sight system is a standard A2 Front Sight post on a Milspec front sight base. At the back, and what really makes this set-up work, is a Troy Industries Di-Optic Aperture (DOA) Folding Rear BattleSight.
I fired more than 300 rounds of .223 Remington through the Extreme Duty 316, from a number of ammunition makers, including: 60 gr. V-Max and 75 gr. Boat-tailed hollow point from HPR; 62 gr. Fusion; 64 gr. RazorBack XT by Winchester; and a 70 gr. Solid Defense X made by ASYM Precision Ammunition. All performed well, with not a single jam up or misfire.
Throughout, the Extreme Duty rifle handled well and pointed easily. It’s a lighter rifle at 6.4 pounds empty, and is just 35.5 inches long when the A4 buttstock’s fully extended. The DOA BattleSight provides very fast target acquisition and is pretty darned accurate. I got the rifle hitting bulls eyes at 30 yards at my local range without too many problems (it started off shooting way left and down), then moved up to targets at 100 yards.
With open sights and firing from a shooting bench, I was able to get two-inch to three-inch groupings, minus a few fliers (which I can’t lay on the rifle). That kind of shooting’s not going to get you into an Olympic rifle event. But with open sights, a new rifle, and a pair of 52-year-old eyes? I’ll take it.
I’ve been doing a lot of hog hunting of late, in thick underbrush, and this rifle would give you fast, accurate shooting in tight places. It would perform equally well for home defense.
For longer ranges, a scope can be mounted on the rifle. The DOA BattleSight folds down and out of the way. The front sight base can be removed (a gunsmith’s probably the way to go here). On the other hand, the technical folks at Del-Ton tell me if it is left in place, the front sight base will protrude only slightly into the very bottom of the scope picture–into the bottom quarter of so of it.
Stan Chen, owner of ASYM Precision Ammunition, explained to me that his 70 grain Solid Defense X round in .223 works best in a 1×7 twist barrel, as the faster spin helps to better stabilize the longer bullet he uses. He doesn’t recommend these rounds for anything less than a 1×8 twist barrel. At 1×9, he notes, the bullets may well tumble in flight.
The DTI Extreme Duty has a 16-inch hammer forged CMV chrome lined barrel, a six-position M4 mil-spec stock, M4 handguards with double heat shields, and A2 flash hider. It comes with a hard case, a 30-round magazine and a California-approved gun lock.