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nature liked to grab at everything. After the first night wandering the fields and crossing though

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Precision blackout ghost Dagger grey

[This article originally appeared in RECOIL Issue 25]
Grey Ghost Precision Dagger Brings 300 AAC Blackout to the Bolt Gun

Three-hundred AAC in a bolt gun. Do we need the accuracy of a bolt gun when 300 BLK is more of a 300 yards-and-in punch in the solar plexus than a 1,000-yard nasal cavity cleaner?

That was the second thing we considered when we fondled the Grey Ghost Precision Dagger. The first was, “This is frickin’ cool.” Like so many things in the world, practicality doesn’t always square up to performance … or popularity. Nose piercing, we don’t get it. Nipples on men, totally don’t need them, but we’ve all got them. Inhaling the smoke from burning leaves, who thought of that one? Shaving, commercial air travel, ballpoint pens … all these things were once thought absurd, but are now commonplace.

With that in mind, we were willing to give the idea of a backpackable, folding-stock, 300 BLK bolt gun a chance and put it through its paces. We wondered how the svelte Dagger would do on a South Texas hog hunt, patrolling for swine on foot over a few days and nights. We thought you might wonder the same thing. …

300 BLK’s rainbow-like trajectory might feel odd, but there’s no arguing its effectiveness, especially when comparing the round to 5.56mm. We reached out to Ethan Lessard, Engineering VP at Q and one of the big brains that helped Advanced Armament Corporation bring 300 AAC Blackout to market in 2010, for some fun facts that explain how the cartridge compares to its .223 Rem and .308 Win siblings.

He says it takes a 21-inch barrel to get the same muzzle energy out of 5.56mm M193 that a 300 BLK 110 Barnes bullet produces using a shorter 14-inch barrel. “If both are fixed at 14 inches, 300 BLK has 23 percent more muzzle energy, plus a far greater expanded diameter in gel.”
That’s supersonic; when we’re talking subs, “300 BLK is more likely to stabilize a 175-grain or heavier bullet in a factory 300 BLK barrel than a .308 Win,” says Lessard. “Meaning that off-the-shelf subsonic 300 BLK is more lethal than subsonic .308.”

Working at shorter ranges, say under 500 yards, Lessard says a 300 BLK setup will give you what you need in a package much smaller and lighter than a .308 Win rifle; there’s more factory-loaded subsonic ammo available in 300 BLK than in .308 Win; and 300 BLK has more consistent velocity because the case fill is close to 100 percent.

So, 300 AAC makes perfect sense in a 14.5-inch barrel. But what does a short-range bolt gun bring to the hunting and tactical arenas?



For starters, the rifle is small. Folded up, it’ll fit in a pack. Nosy, Bambi-loving neighbors won’t spot you rolling out with your hunting gear — a real concern in some neighborhoods. It won’t get in the way when walking or climbing into a stand.

There are lots of localities that restrict hunting with .22 calibers. However, .30 cal and up is the norm for hunting throughout America, so 300 BLK makes plenty of sense for close-range animal harvesting in hilly or wooded areas — that’s many places east of the Mississippi. Combine 300 BLK’s terminal performance with its ability to run in a small, lightweight platform optimized for short barrels, feeding from common .223 magazines, and the appeal increases.

We’ve heard hunting with semi-autos is restricted in some states. Google tells us this is only the case in Pennsylvania and Delaware. There may be more local ordinances in other states that limit the use of semi-auto rifles, so the Dagger will appeal to hunters looking to use the small .30-caliber cartridge to punch deer-sized game tags in AR-unfriendly locales.



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