While Mossberg’s Patriot line is considered quality economy rifles, the Patriot Revere ratchets up to the top of the line but at a price below other manufacturers’ similarly crafted guns. MSRP is $848, but that would be like paying sticker price on a car lot. Nobody pays sticker price. You can find them in the mid-600s.
The Patriot Revere “captures the nostalgia of classic hunting, yet it is built to today’s standards with the most-desired features,” said Linda Powell, Mossberg’s legendary PR professional. “The beauty of the Patriot Revere is that this swoon-worthy rifle is moderately priced, so you can enjoy the tradition of a classically-styled hunting rifle without selling the farm.” Swoon-worthy may be a bit over the top, but she makes a good point.
The point is, you don’t have to spend an arm and a leg on a rifle to hunt Africa. All you need is reliability and performance, and classic looks is icing on the cake. Put the money you save toward the hunt.
The Patriot Revere starts at 7 pounds, add a scope and full magazine, and I was toting a solid load of hunting confidence while following PH Leon DuPlessis up and down iron-rich red-rock and red-soil kopjes, which is apparently their term for steep, rock- and boulder-strewn hills.
The rifle’s weight was useful in holding down recoil, which is further reduced by the ventilated rubber buttpad. Spec-wise, it features a 24-inch recessed-crown barrel with a 1:10-inch twist and overall length of 44¼ inches. The metal is a deep blue finish and the stock is oil-finished laser-checkered walnut – Premier 2.0 Grade European walnut, they call it – with distinctive rosewood grip cap and forend tip, both set off by a maple spacer. I was kidding (sort of) about Powell going through the whole warehouse to find one with pretty wood but if she didn’t and this one was pulled randomly from stock, well, it’s a beauty.
But beauty, as they say, is only skin deep so what really mattered is how it would perform. Not being the trusting sort, I removed and reset the factory-installed scope bases, twisting off two screws in one stubborn hole, which called in gunsmith David Orten who determined the hole wasn’t tapped all the way through. Quick retapping and I was back in business. I topped it with a Sig Sauer Sierra 3 BDX scope, loaded it with Sig Sauer Elite Performance 150-grainers and went to work.
The polymer box magazine, which holds five .308s, is one of the plastic aspects that I’d prefer be metal, the magazine well and trigger guard being others, but I get the need to keep costs down. And the magazine snaps securely in, though I took a spare to prevent being limited to a single shot if I happened to lose the original in the bush.
The trigger, Mossberg’s patented LBA (Lightning Bolt Action) adjustable trigger, broke crisply with just a hint of travel, producing nice groups on the bench never wandering far from the inch or so you like see; sometimes doing better, with some wider groups I ascribed to me rushing shots. Don’t get me wrong, I would get a couple near-touching shots, then ding one off a bit; never quite stacking all three together, but comfortable for hunting.
I fired some rapid-fire groups, then shot from a tripod, recommended practice for hunting in Africa, including some quick shot/back-up shot combos, consistently producing minute-of-kudu shots.
I had no ejection or feeding mishaps while shooting north of 100 rounds, south of 200 off the bench and sticks – or, more importantly, in Africa on kudu and zebra.
Overall assessment: Functionally sound, reasonably accurate, classic good looks and a price that will leave something in the bank account to cover the taxidermy bill.