For the past several weeks, in connection with the upcoming Outdoor Channel show “The Gun Nuts,”** I’ve been shooting a new tactical rifle from Thompson/Center called the Icon Warlord. Right now, the Warlord comes only in .308, but there may be a .338 Lapua version in the future. It’s made in the T/C Custom Shop and, with a Bushnell Elite 4200 8X-32X scope aboard, weighs 13 pounds even.


I’ll describe it further in a subsequent post, but in any event, the Warlord is guaranteed to put three shots in ½-inch at 100 yards. (The group that was sent with the rifle measured .400.) I don’t believe in 3-shot groups for tactical, varmint, or target rifles, so all my testing was 5-shot spreads.

The Warlord group shown on the right is five bullets through a single hole that measures .053, which is close enough to perfection to suit me. (The group to its left is typical.) Just about every time you start a perfect group the wind will come up or the Legendary Chicken Fairy will fart or you’ll twitch or you’ll get a bad shell and the group will be wrecked. Not this time. I think this is the smallest group I’ve ever fired with a non-benchrest rifle. If you’d like to try it at home, I used Federal brass and 210M primers, 167-grain Lapua Scenar bullets, and a tasteful charge of IMR 4350. For more on the Icon Warlord, click here.

_*I can’t think of another hobby in which a hole in a piece of paper would be interesting.

**Starring Phil Bourjaily, Eddie Nickens, and myself._