The standard heavy-barreled version of the 457, the Varmint has a .866” cylindrical barrel. Not only does the heavy barrel make for good harmonics, it also allows the Varmint to perform well with a wide variety of rimfire loads, translating into an accurate platform for shooting targets or getting game. The Turkish walnut stock has an American-style comb for use with a scope and a wide, flat forend that rides a sandbag well. Laser-cut stippling gives grip fore and aft.
If we were to pick one thing that our previous rimfire platforms were lacking, it was an American-style push-to-fire safety — something Hunter’s Education instructors and 4-H shooting coaches have begged us to incorporate for years. Though that was the most obvious change, we also took the opportunity to tweak a load of small things at the same time. In addition to the receiver-mounted, push-to-fire safety, we chopped almost an inch of length from the action and slab-sided it to reduce its footprint and weight.
The stamped bottom metal of the 455 is gone, swapped for a classy two-piece interlocking system. To make scope fitment easier, we ditched the 90° bolt rotation in favor of 60°, allowing for larger ocular bell diameters with lower ring heights. To top it all off, the 457 now features a trigger adjustable for weight, creep and over-travel.
With the exact same swappable barrel system as the 455 and the same reliable polymer magazine system, the 457 is without a doubt the best rimfire platform we’ve ever fielded.