Perhaps the most distinguishing feature of the Magnum Lite Graphite .22 WMR is its Magnum Research Ultra Barrel. Extremely stiff and much lighter than steel, the patented Ultra barrel is built by wrapping graphite “cloth” pre-impregnated with thermo-set resin around a steel barrel liner, then baking it to cure the resin. Machined aluminum caps are then fitted to both ends—the muzzle cap being machined with an 11 degree target crown—and the graphite-wrapped barrel is sanded to finished diameter. The result is a lightweight barrel that dissipates heat very quickly for consistent accuracy. And with a 19-inch length, it wrings all the juice out of the .22 WMR cartridge. No open sights are provided.
With an overall length of 38 inches, and an empty weight of 4.45 lbs., the Magnum Lite Graphite .22 WMR is a light and handy rifle. It comes with a one-piece Hogue OverMolded rubber stock, with rubber butt pad and front/rear sling swivel studs as standard equipment. Controls consist of cross-bolt safety, bolt release, magazine release and trigger, all housed in a polymer base plate/trigger guard. The trigger is a nice one, breaking cleanly and consistently at an average pull weight of 4 lbs. 12 oz., no creep or stacking. The rifle comes with one Ruger-branded, 9-round rotary magazine. The suggested retail price for the Magnum Lite Graphite .22 WMR is $791. Its also offered with Barracuda laminated-wood, thumb-hole stocks in Nutmeg ($819), Forest camo ($935) or Pepper ($935).
For testing, we mounted a Vortex Diamondback HP 2-8x32mm riflescope ($489; www.vortexoptics.com) on the top rail and went to work with Troy Landry’s favorite ammunition from the bench at 50 (100?) yards.
[ADD ACCURACY RESULTS HERE]