What is the first thing that comes to mind when you bring home a new firearm? For me, its “How can I personalize this to my liking or what is my intended use case for this rifle/pistol?”
Frankly, testing new gear really lights me up. I love to know what works, what doesn’t, and what I like. It seems these days everyone is trying to sell you on this or that, or a new way of doing the same thing. But if you don’t have a solid understanding of a multitude of products in those categories, it’s hard to know what’s smoke and what’s worth looking into.
After I got my hands on the Springfield SAINT Edge ATC, I knew what I wanted the rifle to be. A mid-range, suppressed, ragged-hole puncher. In my first tests, I achieved .4 MOA groups repeatedly and even made hits out to 1,300 yards. But I think this rifle really shines between 100-600 yards.
With that in mind, I wanted to find an optic that wasn’t going to add a lot of weight to the already hefty rifle. I also wanted a direct thread super quiet suppressor that could also double as a test can for .30-caliber bolt guns. Finally, the controls on the rifle are perfectly fine, but if I can swap it, I’ll consider it. After all, they really make a difference in familiarity between multiple rifles if you use the same manufacturer.
EOTech recently released their VUDU 1-10X optic, and I’ve fallen in love with their 5-25X and the 3-18X. So, I figured the same would go for this new 1-10X. Sure enough, it’s so far been everything I’ve come to love and expect from the VUDU line of optics. It has a very robust housing, locking turrets, superior glass and a great, easy-to-use illuminated reticle.
Attaching the 1-10X to the rifle, I used my go-to American Defense Manufacturing Recon SL mount. I know people have taken to mounting their optics so high that they need cyborg neck extensions, but if you want to shoot repeatable precision rifles you will want that optic low enough to get a solid cheek weld and to minimize your height over bore. The Recon SL mount is perfect for this.
Being that I’m interested in keeping this a 100-600 yard rifle, the 1-10X is a great magnification range to accomplish anything within these distances with speed and clarity enough to find the smallest of targets at range.
Did You Hear That?
For the suppressor, I recently connected with a local Phoenix company called Thermal Suppressors. They make titanium tube suppressors with a proprietary two-stage 17-4 stainless steel heat treated blast chamber that reduces the majority of the “first round pop”.
The user-serviceable baffle stack is machined from solid 6AL-4V titanium and uses a staircase profile to slow down gasses while increasing surface pressure for heat dissipation. The cap and muzzle threads can be changed and configured for 1/2×28 or 5/8×24, making the Glacier TI a truly jack of all trade’s suppressor.
The staff at Thermal Suppressors were super helpful and even brought out a decibel meter to test exactly what kind of sound reduction we were getting at the range. The website says you can expect 23-29 DB, and during our tests, we were right in the middle of that range. The Glacier TI is exactly what I have been looking for on the SAINT Edge ATC.
When suppressing a rifle, the gas blowback will find its way out of any holes that it can. One of those holes can be the small gaps near your charging handle on an AR-15. Lucky for us, Radian Weapons makes a fantastic charging handle option, the Radian Raptor SD. Radian added ports to the charging handle that redirect the gasses forward and down, away from the shooter’s face. The Raptor is also one of the easiest-to-use and rugged charging handles on the market.
They also now offer a safety selector known as the Talon. These selectors come in a variety of colors and lengths. The Talon is ambidextrous and has the option of being either a 90-degree or 45-degree throw. The combination of these two items really makes the Saint Edge feel like MY rifle. I’ve been running the Talon on most of my AR15s so having that consistent feel is a big plus.
Last but not least, if it’s a precision gun that I own it’s got a B&T Industries Atlas Bipod on it. I really can’t say enough good things about these bipods. They are lightweight and extremely rugged. They are easy to quickly deploy and provide a very solid base to shoot from.
With the new VUDU 1-10, the Glacier TI, Atlas Bipod and the Radian controls, the SAINT Edge ATC really felt like it was ready to rock and roll for what I will be using it for. It’s just a fun rifle to shoot. It’s extremely accurate and fast. The recoil is so minimal that you can put multiple accurate hits on target in a very quick timeframe.
The Saint Edge ATC is also just a wicked cool-looking rifle with some fantastic tech that allows for greater accuracy out of the box. Beyond plinking, at the range this would be a perfect coyote or varmint rifle that I put great faith in for putting that round exactly where I want it to go.
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