Made: 1962 to present, Action: bolt action rifle
Variants: Almost 100 models made (34 offered currently)
Production: Over five million made as of 2012 (50th anniversary)
Original price: $114.95 to $154.95 US (based on model)
Current value: $499-899 (CAN) for a vintage BDL model (often with scope). A new BDL in 7 mm Mag MSRP is $994 U.S.
I bought my first used Model 700 Remington in 2013. It was a 32 year old BDL, chambered in .270 Win. and it was a tack driver! With it, I won our first hunt camp shooting competition with three shots within an inch of centre, off-hand, at 100 yards.
While I loved that gun, I eventually gave it to my son-in-law. I quickly, however, snatched up another Model 700 of similar vintage last fall —this time in 7 mm Rem. Mag., left-handed. Like its predecessor, it consistently bench-shoots nickel-sized groupings.
Reputation for accuracy
The Model 700 evolved out of Remington Arms’ wartime production experience. In 1948, they introduced the Model 721, 722, (and later the 725), in direct competition with Winchester’s famed Model 70. While Remington promoted its cheaper, rugged, massed-produced sporting rifles as having “the strongest bolt action ever developed”, the guns soon earned a reputation for exceptional accuracy.
This legacy culminated in 1962, with the introduction of the Model 700 with sleeker, more refined versions: an ADL Deluxe Grade and BDL Custom Deluxe Grade in various calibres. The ADL was the base model, with a Monte Carlo stock and blind magazine, while the BDL sported a glossier stock, iconic black pistol grip, and fore-end caps, (white spacers were added later), and hinged magazine plate. The BDL was also the first rifle chambered for the 7mm Rem. Mag. (now one of the most popular deer cartridges) to debut that year.
Since then, Remington has produced over 5-million Model 700s in over 40 calibres and many more models, making it the most popular bolt-action sporting rifle of all time. With its famed “out-of-the-box” accuracy, both the military and police adopted the Model 700 as a sniper rifle.
There is one quirk, however. Some models have a barrel bump/pressure point on the inside of the stock near the front stud sling, so the barrel is not free-floating. Despite ongoing debate about its removal, I’m not about to change a thing with mine.
Note: In 2014, Remington recalled all rifles with X-Mark Pro triggers manufactured from May 1, 2006 to April 9, 2014 for safety reasons. Go to the recall website xmprecall.remington.com and enter your gun’s serial number to check if it’s affected. Change the country to Canada and accept the conditions. A box, labels, and shipping instructions for the free replacement will follow.
Ken Doherty is a retired teacher, curator, writer, and a long-time resident of Peterborough. He enjoys collecting, target shooting, and hunting with vintage firearms. Contact Ken at email@example.com.
Originally published in the July 2019 edition of Ontario OUT of DOORS magazine.