What You Should Look for When Buying a Rifle

Reports by the National Shooting Sports Foundation and firearms industry consultants reveal that Americans have been on a gun-buying spree. For instance, the gun sale from March to July 2020 was 8.5 million, which is 94% higher than the same period in 2019. 

The increased demand for firearms in the US is because Americans want to feel secure. A vast majority of gun owners say having a gun makes them feel safer. Other reasons for increased gun demand include hunting, social connection, and recreation

Buying a rifle is always an exciting milestone in a person’s life, especially if it is your first time owning one. To help you make the right decision, we have researched and compiled some tips on what you should look for and consider when buying a rifle:


One of the important things to consider when buying a rifle is its accuracy. Accuracy in rifles refers to the ability to hit exactly what you are aiming for. This factor is very important, especially if you are buying a rifle for hunting. 

The fact is that some rifles have better accuracy than others. Some of the things to look for when analyzing the rifle’s accuracy include a trigger guard, well-aligned scope, and a well-functioning barrel and muzzle crown.

A rifle with great accuracy will increase your chances of hitting your target. When you’re consistently hitting your target, the entire experience becomes seamless and more fun.

Muzzle Brake

Another crucial factor to consider when buying a rifle is the muzzle brake. A muzzle brake is a device connected to the muzzle or barrel of a rifle that helps redirect a portion of propellant gases to counter unwanted muzzle rise and recoil. 

The muzzle brake helps to reduce the pressure that goes back to the rifle, thus reducing unwanted rise when you take a shot. This is important because it will enable you to follow the impact of a bullet better and improve after-shot visibility.

Metal Surface Smoothness

The smoothness of the metal surface in a rifle is a crucial factor that many people usually overlook when buying a rifle. Metal surface smoothness not only affects the comfort of the rifle when holding it but may also affect the rifle’s precision. If you are planning to use the rifle for activities that require high precision, such as hunting or sports, ensure that you purchase a rifle with a smooth metal surface to enhance the comfort and accuracy of your shots.

Type of Sights

It is imperative to consider the type of sights when buying a rifle because it will affect the accuracy of your shots. This is particularly important if you are planning to use your rifle for hunting. A shot that is even a few inches off target could lead to untold suffering for the animals and lengthy pursuit, making the entire process tiresome. 

The type of sight to choose when buying a rifle should match the environment you are planning to use the rifle. Common types of rifle sights include laser sights, reflex sight, telescopic sights, peep sight, and iron or open sights. If you plan to use the rifle for skill shooting, sniping, or hunting, you should buy a rifle with a telescopic sight for enhanced accuracy.

Ensure Rifles are Drilled/Tapped for Scope Mounting

Nearly all modern rifles, especially hunting rifles, are tapped and drilled, meaning they have holes drilled on top of the receiver by the manufacturer for mounting scopes. However, that does not mean that you should assume that the rifle you are about to buy has this crucial feature. 

It is important to note that regardless of how precise your scope is, it will not be of help if your mounts are unsteady, faulty, or unsuited for your rifle or to you. Ensure that the rifle is tapped and drilled for seamless scope mounting.

Fit to the Metal

This is another crucial factor to consider when buying a rifle. 4150 steel has 0.50% carbon content and is highly recommended for rifles due to its ability to mitigate heat and its impressive abrasion-resistant abilities. This steel can also handle an extreme temperature of over 700F better than other types of metals like stainless steel.


The last thing you want in a rifle is failure to feed or eject. Failure to feed usually occurs when a round fails to load into your rifle’s chamber from the magazine. On the other hand, failure to extract occurs when an empty cartridge of a just-fired round remains in the chamber.

These two issues can make you lose your target when hunting. Therefore, when buying a rifle, choose one with seamless feeding and ejecting to maximize your chances of hitting your target.

Trigger Pull

Trigger pull refers to a measurement of force on the trigger of a firearm to fire it. Various types of rifles have a different range of trigger pulls. For instance, military rifles have trigger pulls of between 4 and 7 pounds, while 22 caliber rimfire rifles have a trigger pull of between 3 and 5 pounds.

A rifle with an unsuitable trigger pull is an indication of poor-quality factory assembly, a flawed lock mechanism, or flawed safety features. Therefore, ensure that the rifle has a stable trigger pull when buying one. 

Consider Stock Configuration

The stock is the part of the rifle that provides structural support to the portion to which the action, barrel, and firing mechanism are attached. Stock configuration is a crucial feature to consider because it will affect the performance of your rifle.

The stock configuration also helps to counter muzzle rise, thus improving shot accuracy. If you want to aim with stability, ensure you buy a rifle with the right stock configuration. 

Consider the Quality of Stock Finish

Before making your final decision when buying a rifle, it is important to consider the quality of the stock finish. Nothing degrades the look of a rifle than a poor stock finish. The better the quality of stock finish, the more years your rifle will last. Therefore, if you want your rifle to look good and serve you for a long time, ensure you buy one with a high-quality stock finish.

If you are thinking of buying a rifle for whatever reason, we recommend that you follow the tips given above. This way, you will buy a rifle that will deliver excellent performance and suit your unique needs as a shooter.

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