Guns & Ammo Network


Collapse bottom bar
Subscribe

Mossberg’s 4×4 Bolt Action Is A Real Tack Driver

by Greg Rodriguez   |  January 3rd, 2011 17

The bolt-action Model 4×4 from Mossberg delivers tackdriving accuracy and is an affordable, innovative design.

Mossberg has always been known as a maker of affordable, quality shotguns. I own a few and have always liked them, but I was not aware that Mossberg made a rifle until two years ago when a friend of mine who isn’t really a gun guy showed up in deer camp with a brand-new Model 100 ATR in .270. He bought it at Wal-Mart, complete with a scope, for $289.


And then I shot it.

The rifle showed promise when my friend shot it. He isn’t the greatest shot in the world, but the bullets were landing in nice little triangles. When my buddy had zeroed it to his satisfaction, I took a turn. My first group, with Winchester’s 130-grain Power-Point factory load measured around a half-inch. Subsequent groups were equally impressive. I didn’t go right out and buy one, but that gun came to mind during several conversations about accurate, affordable rifles.

A year later, I landed in Rapid City, South Dakota, to test the yet-to-be-announced, top-secret Mossberg 4×4 rifle. My expectations for the new rifle were much higher than when my friend unwrapped his shiny new ATR.


SPECIFICATIONS
Mossberg Bolt-Action Rifle
Manufacturer: O.F. Mossberg & Sons
Model: 4×4
Operation: Bolt-action
Caliber: 7mm Remington Magnum
Barrel Length: 24 inches
Overall Length: 42 inches
Weight, empty 6.7 pounds
Length Of Pull: 13.25 inches
Safety: Two positions
Sights: None; receiver is drilled and tapped for scope mount bases
Stock: Synthetic
Magazine Capacity: 3 rounds
Finish: Marinecote
Price: $481

I was not disappointed in the .300 Winchester Magnum prototype 4×4. Fit and finish were first rate, and it was an attractive and unique-looking rifle that shot the lights out. I had no trouble shooting minute-of-angle groups with it at 100 yards. Steel targets from field positions out to 250 yards were a cinch with the Mossberg 4×4.

In the field the 4×4′s new stock handled like a dream. From prone I took a nice pronghorn ram at a hair over 250 yards. The forend rode my crumpled daypack quite well, and my sight picture was rock solid when the trigger broke. I later took a nice bison bull from offhand with it. I leaned against a tree for the first shot, but the second was an offhand snap shot at nearly 100 yards. The rifle came up on target and hung rock steady on both shots.

Once again, I was impressed after a brief encounter with a Mossberg rifle. And I was excited that I was in line to receive a production 4×4 rifle for more in-depth testing. Four months later I had one in my hands.

The 4×4 Rifle
Mossberg’s new 4×4 rifle is based on the Model 100 ATR action and is machined from bar stock. Cartridge capacity is four standard or three magnum cartridges in the 4×4′s smooth-feeding detachable polymer magazine. The bolt locks up via two large locking lugs, and the right locking lug houses the sliding extractor. A plunger-style ejector is housed on the left side of the boltface. A prominent gas shield on the left side of the bolt protects the shooter in the event of a ruptured case. My sample 4×4′s bolt was very smooth with just a minimal amount of side-to-side play.


The new Mossberg 4×4 bolt-action rifle comes with laminated, walnut, or synthetic stocks and is chambered for .25-06, .270 Winchester, 7mm Remington Magnum, .30-06, .300 Winchester Magnum, and .338 Winchester Magnum. Magazine capacity is four rounds of standard cartridges and three rounds of magnum cartridges.

The safety lever is a small, stamped metal piece situated just behind the bolt handle. It is a two-position affair that doesn’t lock the bolt. The safety on my review rifle operates smoothly and positively, with a satisfying tactile and audible “click.”

The bolt release is a similarly shaped stamping on the left side of the receiver. To remove the bolt, simply hold down the bolt release and retract the bolt.

The new 4×4 is chambered for .25-06, .270 Winchester, .30-06, 7mm Remington Magnum, .300 Winchester Magnum, and .338 Winchester Magnum. The rifle features a free-floated, button-rifled barrel with a recessed crown. Magnum rifles, like the review gun, come with a 24-inch tube while standard calibers come with 22-inch barrels. The barrel is devoid of sights, but Weaver-style bases are affixed to the receiver at the factory.


Available finishes for the new 4×4 are matte blue and Mossberg’s proprietary Marinecote, which is a satin nickel finish that is corrosion resistant.

The entire barreled action is finished in Mossberg’s proprietary Marinecote. Marinecote is a satin nickel finish and is both attractive and corrosion resistant. It is a pleasant contrast to the sample rifle’s black stock.

The 4×4′s futuristic stock is the most notable difference between the 100 ATR and the 4×4. Its rakish lines, vented forend, and skeletonized buttstock give it a distinctive appearance. The buttstock also has what can best be described as Mossberg’s 21st-century interpretation of a Monte Carlo cheekpiece and what I describe as a “real” recoil pad. On the synthetic stock two polymer sling swivel attachment points (you can’t really call them studs) and the trigger guard are integral, molded-in parts. (Laminated- and walnut-stocked 4x4s are available.) The magazine catch is recessed into the stock just ahead of the magazine.

As futuristic-looking as it is, the 4×4′s stock has some old-school handling qualities. A thin wrist and trim forend contribute to its lively feel. The unusual Monte Carlo-esque cheekpiece aligned my eye perfectly with the Simmons 3-9X ProHunter scope that I mounted on the review rifle thanks in part to its relatively short, 13.25-inch length of pull.


The 4×4 is based on the Mossberg Model 100 ATR bolt action.

The Simmons ProHunter series features a rugged one-piece tube, high-quality optical glass, and HydroShield lens coating. I particularly liked its eye relief, which is a constant 3.75 inches throughout the power range. On the range I was also impressed with the scope’s adjustments, which moved the advertised quarter-inch per click.


The 4×4′s synthetic stock is innovative with its skeletonized buttstock

Shooting The 4×4
Before I get into the results of putting the 7mm Magnum Model 4×4 through its paces at the American Shooting Centers near Houston, I want to say that I am not recoil sensitive, but I realize that many shooters are, so I try to take note of the recoil of every gun and cartridge combination I review. I generally don’t find the 7mm Remington Magnum’s recoil objectionable in sporter-weight rifles. With the scope, a full magazine, and one of Blackhawk’s new Mountain Slings attached, the 4×4 weighed in at exactly eight pounds, so I was not expecting it to recoil excessively. However, I was surprised to find that recoil was even less than I had expected!


Monte Carlo-style cheekpiece, effective recoil pad

The 4×4′s excellent recoil pad was a key ingredient in minimizing recoil, but I believe two other factors greatly contributed to its light recoil. First, the skeletonized buttstock is not as stiff as a conventional stock. I believe the resulting flex soaks up a fair amount of the recoil. Second, in my experience, Monte Carlo cheekpieces have always seemed to help minimize recoil in hard-kicking rifles. As unconventional as it looks, the 4×4′s stock is an especially effective and comfortable example of the design that really seems to help tame recoil.


Integral trigger guard, and recessed magazine catch located just ahead of the magazine well.

I started my shooting review with Federal’s 160-grain Nosler Partition load. I’ve had mixed results over the years regarding accuracy with Partitions, but they’ve always performed well on game. I planned to hunt with the 4×4, so I wanted to use Partitions after testing “flavor of the month” bullets almost exclusively for the last few years. I was not disappointed. The rifle drove the first three rounds into a neat little triangle that measured just 0.65 inch. Subsequent groups proved the Mossberg’s preference for this load–the average for five groups was an impressive 0.72 inch.


This 0.71-inch three-shot group demonstrates the review rifle’s accuracy potential. The 7mm Remington Magnum 4×4 rifle’s average accuracy for four factory loads and one handload was 0.98 inch at 100 yards.

I also brought out a few of my favorite accuracy loads to see if I could improve on that mark. First, I fired Hornady’s 154-grain InterBond load. The InterBond is a great hunting bullet that is also very accurate. Its average for five groups was 1.30 inches–definitely respectable.

Next, I tried Federal’s 165-grain Sierra GameKing loading. GameKing bullets drop deer and pronghorn-sized game like lightning, but I wouldn’t use them on anything bigger than a deer because they’re just too soft. However, they are consistently very accurate, and I thought they might give the Partition load a run for its money.

The 4×4 liked the Sierra GameKings. In fact, its 0.78-inch, five-group average was almost identical to the Partition’s five-group average. And, with a biggest group of 0.89 inch, the GameKing load was more consistent. Still, I would choose the 160-grain Partition over the GameKing by virtue of its versatility on game.

I also put five strings of Winchester’s 150-grain Ballistic Silvertip load through the 4×4. The Ballistic Silvertip line has always shot well for me, regardless of caliber, so I wasn’t surprised that it, too, averaged close to one MOA. The actual average was 1.22 inches.


Since the sample 4×4 seemed to like bullets in the 160- to 165-grain weight range best, I decided to try a pet handload with the Barnes 160-gr
ain X-bullet over 61.5 grains of Reloder 22. This load exited the 4×4′s muzzle at a respectable 2826 fps. My first group with this load showed promise. It wasn’t a screamer, but the 0.77-inch group was encouraging. I dug in and shot another group, and it measured 0.69 inch. By the time I finished, I had a five-group average of 0.88 inch. I didn’t beat the best factory load, but I was pretty darn close!


The 4×4′s bolt locks up via two large locking lugs, and a large gas shield on the left side protects the shooter in the event of a ruptured case.

Although my previous experiences with Mossberg rifles had been positive, I was surprised at how accurate this 4×4 was. I have tested many rifles that would shoot a favorite load or two into an inch or less, but not many factory rifles can produce sub-MOA accuracy so consistently with a variety of loads. And its accuracy is even more impressive when you consider the 4×4′s low retail price.

I liked the new 4×4 rifle so much that I took it to my friend’s ranch to hunt pigs. My daughter, Chloe, and I hunted high and low for a sow suitable for the grill, and on the last morning of the hunt I got a shot at one. The big old sow had come into a large oat patch to feed in the pre-dawn, and when I squeezed the trigger, the 160-grain Nosler Partition smashed through both shoulders and dropped her in her tracks.


Shooting Mossberg’s 7mm Magnum 4×4
BULLET POWDER VELOCITY (fps) 100-YD ACCURACY (inches)
(Type) (Grs.)
Barnes 160-gr. X-Bullet Reloder 22 61.5 2826 0.88
Winchester 150-gr. Ballistic Silvertip Factory Load 3046 1.22
Hornady 154-gr. InterBond Factory Load 2996 1.30
Federal 160-gr. Partition Factory Load 2837 0.72
Federal 165-gr. GameKing Factory Load 2841 0.78
NOTES: Accuracy is the average of five three-shot groups fired from a Caldwell benchrest at 100 yards. Velocity is the average of 5 rounds measured 10 feet from the gun’s muzzle.

I came away from that hog hunt with the same warm and fuzzy feelings about Mossberg’s new 4×4 rifle that I experienced after shooting that first 100 ATR rifle two years ago. It is accurate, well made, and has several innovative design features. Rare is the economy-priced rifle that inspires “oohs” and “aahs” from serious gun people, but when it shoots as good as the 4×4 does, no real shooter can help but admire it.

  • brandon

    what ammunition would u reccommened for the 4×4 300 win mag thats the gun that i have

    • Ak-47

      As twist 1:10 probably it shots more heavy bullets better

      • gco 24

        i thinking abot 3o8 hop it is 1 1o

  • DeShane Burkhalter

    has anyone heard anything about the 4×4 in the 308 win model #27678 i am looking to get a 308 and was wondering about the 4×4 now that it is comming out in a 308

  • Jeremy

    I bought the 30-06 2 years ago and shoot groups that i can cover with a quarter at 100 yd. every time….very pleased with this rifle

  • CBoyd

    I want that stock that you got on yours! Where could i get me one for my 338?

  • Jeff

    I am in the hunt for a new 30-06 for me or my son to go elk hunting. We have looked at the 4×4 and like the feel and looks but unsure of its performance. Most any gun will shoot a good group at 100 yards what will the 4×4 do at 250 yards in a 30-06, my savage feather light (110E) will shoot a 3 bullet group at 250 yards you can cover with a quarter every time (160 gr nosler partition) will the 4×4 do that.

  • Drew

    Anyone know if the mossberg black synthetic skeletonized stock .270 rifle was discontinued?

  • deerslayer

    i have bought my second 4×4 my first was 2 years ago 30-06 took me about 2 boxs to break in the rifle after the break in it is a tack driver. the second rifle is a 300 shooting groups out of the box at 100 yards hole to hole no break in i am highly impressed .with the 300 i add some weight to it to balance it out in the stock an with the muzzle break it took all the kick out off it

  • jerry c

    mossberg 7mm 4×4 is a great gun! So impressed with it. plan on buying the other calibers in it now. would reccomend it to anyone!

  • Alex

    Good review. Thank you for that. Now, when Mossberg has the new trigger just like the Savage's Accutrigger, I'm gonna grab one for under $400.

    • Mike

      Are they coming out with that Accutrigger clone anytime soon? There are aftermarket triggers for almost any rifle that will improve them dramaticly. I don't own the Savage with the Accutrigger yet but have been adjusting Rem 700 triggers to my liking for years along with adjusting the trigger pull on Winchester Model 12 shotguns (was gunsmith at NuLine on day off from FD). It is very refreshing to read that Mossberg has such a good rifle within the price range of almost anyone. As you mentioned, this is a great review…

  • Alex

    Shot today my recently acquired brand new Mossberg 4×4 in 30-06, black plastic stock, muzzle brake, and scope combo.

    The stock itself appears to be cheap and wraps at the barrel easily touching the supposedly "free-floated" barrel. The bolt is far from glass smooth and requires some effort to get it out of and into the battery. The mag is cheap plastic.

    Took the stock off, adjusted the trigger to its minimum of 2 pounds or so, bought two boxes of 30-06 — one Winchester Super X, the other Remington Core Lokt.

    Despite of all seemingly cheapo stuff, the first shot was just a few inches low but windage was right on. A few clicks up on the scope and I was within 1 inch bull's eye circle on my target. I shot four 3-shot groups with one ammo and the same from another box. Both ammo are the cheapest I could find in my local gun shop, nothing special about it. 180 grain bullets, lead soft point, semi-jacketed. The result is, without any modifications to the gun, it surprisingly shot within 1-1.5 inch groups

  • hoang huynh

    anybody know where i can get the skeleton synthetick sstock like that in the picture..i have a 4×4 30-06

  • pmyers

    own a 100 ATR in 30-06 and have dropped 2 elk at 300 yds with Remington Core locs in 180gr, also own a22-250 4×4, at 200yds I can put a quarter over a 5 shot group off the bench with Remington core locs in 55gr. Now looking to get a 270 4×4 for my oldest son.

  • h2ofaull

    Wondering why Mossberg stays away from us lefties ,
    especially with the stock design that is impossible to use!

  • BB

    i just picked up my verry own 4×4 today in .270 with the laminated wood stock and i am verry pleased used the bore sighter to do rough sighting at first then after that only took 3 shots to 0 it in. i was doing 250 + yard shots without even trying. and hitting every time. and with the muzzle break and recoil pad there is barley any felt recoil. all in all there is not a single thing i can say bad about this gun. accurate, reliable and the trigger is amazing

back to top