The Shootrite Katana
After about 30 years of research, study, and training I’ve finally figured out what works well for a general-purpose carbine; after numerous requests from students and readers I’ve also decided to bring this rifle to market. My mission statement: Create a fighting carbine that is lightweight and simple to operate. The maxim guiding me: Effectiveness is a result of simplicity – maximize the potential of the fighting carbine through simplification. The result: The Shootrite Katana, the “short-sword” for today’s Samurai.
The Katana is unique from anything else being offered on the market today. Words like “incredible,” “impressive,” and “amazing” have been used to describe it. Instead of the common trends associated with today’s complicated AR’s – heavy barrels, thick railed handguards, vertical fore-grips, tactical slings, folding sights, collapsible stocks, complicated lights … – the Katana is a lightweight fighting rifle based on the M16/AR’s original concepts, but updated using modern components.
The Katana weighs in at just over five pounds and is equipped with a thin 16-inch barrel. It’s short enough to handle in tight quarters, light enough to train or carry all day without muscle fatigue, more than accurate enough for a fighting rifle, and is quick to maneuver. The Katana’s carbon fiber handguards are lightweight and virtually indestructible, and have a rail for mounting a flashlight in the proper location. Like the original AR the upper receiver doesn’t have an external forward assist. The original forward assist is the concave cutout in the exposed section of the bolt carrier. To seat the bolt you simply place a finger in the cutout and press forward. “When you get a cartridge that won’t seat in a rifle,” according to Stoner, “and you deliberately drive it in, usually you are buying yourself more trouble.” (The Black Rifle, Vol. 3, pg. 129.)
The flattop upper is equipped with fixed front and rear iron sights. These sights can be used as a primary system, or if your red-dot optic fails, especially during a fight, you don’t have to take time to flip up a rear or front sight. The rear sight has an original A1 type drum for windage adjustments; an elevation drum is unnecessary on a fighting rifle.
The Katana’s bolt is “blue-printed” to insure reliable operation, and has a solid one-piece firing pin retaining pin, instead of a split cotter pin, and long-lasting chrome silicon extractor and ejector springs to insure clean extraction and ejections.
The lower receiver uses tried and true mil-spec components. On a fighting rifle you don’t want a match, competition or adjustable trigger. Under the stress of an actual fight a three-pound trigger will feel like three ounces, plus the positive trigger reset, which you get with the standard components, is a good thing. The Katana’s DuckBill Tactical Grip smoothes out the sharp corner between the grip and trigger guard, allowing you to handle and manipulate the weapon without chewing a ragged hole in your middle finger. As for stocks two options are available – either an A1 fixed stock, the best for most applications, or a Magpul retractable stock, in case your application requires an adjustable length stock.
The final details of the Shootrite Katana will be coming after the first of the year, and the very first announcement will be on the Tactical and Shooting Wires. There will also be reviews coming out in most of your favorite shooting magazines. So if you’re thinking about buying an AR, hold off a little while. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.