Both Have Positive Attributes.
Over the centuries, rifle shooters have developed many arguments to keep them fired up: matchlock versus wheel-lock, .45-70 versus .30-30, O’Connor versus Keith, walnut versus synthetic, and on and on and on. These days, many hunters like to argue over whether a bolt-action hunting rifle should be controlled round feed (CRF) or push feed (PF). From the fierce arguments flying around campfires, barstools and cyberspace, you’d think the CRF/PF debate is as old as the bolt action, but really it began in 1990.
Bolt actions rose to dominance in the first half of the 20th century, and until after World War II they were almost all CRF, including just about every military action, along with the Model 54 and 70 Winchesters and Model 30 Remington. Push feed actions didn’t become common until after the war, beginning with the Remington Model 721/722 in 1950.
Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, PFs continued to proliferate. Winchester “redesigned” the Model 70 in 1964, though the only functional change was the switch from CRF to PF. Weatherby started with 98 Mauser-actioned rifles made in Europe, but in the late 1950s switched to the PF Mark V. Sako started making PF actions in Finland, and Fabrique Nationale, the maker of perhaps the best-known commercial 98 Mauser action, introduced a PF version called the FN Supreme in the 1960s. In the late 1960s, Ruger introduced their PF Model 77 in the late 1960s, to compete with the dressed-up version of the Remington 721/722 called the 700.
By John Barness
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