SKAT is a private Russian firearms manufacturing company founded by a gentleman named Gennadiy Kozhayev. The company makes a variety of firearms including Glock clones, AR-15 rifles and PCCs, bolt action precision rifles etc. Mr. Kozhayev is also the head of Russian National Federation of Benchrest and Varminting. This organization and the SKAT company are deeply integrated. In fact, they even share the same website.
Probably the passion of precision shooting coupled with his experience and skills in designing firearms is what eventually lead Gennadiy Kozhayev to design a modular precision rifle which he called GM-200. This rifle was released about a year ago and it looks to be made upon order rather than being a production model. Recently, Kozhayev also shared in various Russian websites images of a bullpup rifle that is currently in development. Let’s take a closer look at these two rifles.
The modularity of this rifle is in its capability to change the barrel, bolt head and magazine thus changing the caliber.
The layout of this rifle represents upper and lower receivers attached to each other via three screws located in front of the pistol grip, in front of the magazine well and at the front end of the lower receiver. Two of these screws also hold the barrel to the upper receiver. Unscrewing them is a required process to detach the installed barrel and replace it with a different caliber one.
The lockup of the action is accomplished in the barrel extension which allows them to manufacture the upper and lower receivers out of lightweight alloy (not specified but presumably aluminum alloy) or carbon fiber. The aluminum forearm is attached to the upper receiver separately. As in the case of the majority of modern precision rifles, the handguard doesn’t touch the barrel making it a free floated one. As seen in the images, the handguard features KeyMod slots machined into it.
The rifle utilizes a three lug bolt with a 60 degree bolt handle throw. The bolt head change is accomplished by disassembling the bolt, removing the pin that holds the bolt head, removing the bolt head itself, replacing it with one that matches the conversion caliber and assembling the bolt back. Interestingly, the bolt body of this rifle can be made not only of steel but also of carbon fiber (see the image below). It is unclear whether the goal of having a carbon fiber bolt body is to decrease the weight or not have a metal on metal contact of the moving parts which in theory may decrease the friction and make the action smoother.
The extractor is located between the locking lugs thus not compromising the lug strength. The rifle uses a spring-loaded plunger ejector built into the bolt head. The bolt handle is attached to the bolt body via a dovetail cut.
In various sources, the rifle is shown chambered in a variety of calibers such as 6.5x47mm Lapua, .308 Winchester, .270 WSM, 7.62x54mmR and many other calibers up to .338 Lapua Magnum. I assume that it will be possible to chamber this rifle in virtually any caliber: from short action to magnum action lengths. The rifle is fed from proprietary double stack single feed steel magazines.
The SKAT GM-200 rifle is seen with different stock options. There are images of AR-15 buffer tube adapter attached to the rifle. However, in the majority of the images, the rifle is shown with a rather unusual looking stock design.
As you can see, it is a rectangular stock with KeyMod slots machined into it. Not that it will change its functionality, but it just looks a bit odd. There is no explanation of the reason why they machined KeyMod on the stock. Well, obviously it is for mounting something on it, but it is just hard to imagine what. Looks like the cheek piece is mounted on KeyMod and I can imagine a vertical grip mounted under the stock to have a grip for the support hand. But what can one theoretically mount on the sides of the stock?
The compatibility with other weapon system includes the use of standard AR-15 pistol grips and trigger mechanism borrowed from Remington 700. The barrels are made of imported rifled blanks which are contoured, chambered and fitted with barrel extensions in the company’s premises.
The company guarantees 0.7 MOA accuracy for the GM-200 rifle. According to the company, the accuracy can be further increased with the use of custom made ammunition. SKAT also advertises to be able to apply any color or camouflage onto the rifle. The weight of the .338 Lapua Magnum version (without the scope and bipod) is 4.5 kilograms (a little less than 10 lbs).
Here is a video showing some of the other features on the computer mockup of this rifle:
This bullpup rifle is Gennadiy Kozhayev’s current project. The reason I decided to combine these two rifles into one article is that the bullpup rifle is based on the GM-200 design and basically shares the same action with it. Also, because it is still in development, there is very little information available on it. Once it becomes a production model and a sufficient amount of information is released by SKAT, I will write a separate, more in-depth article dedicated to this firearm.
This bullpup rifle is being developed in two action lengths. The smaller action will include the calibers from .308 Winchester to .338 Lapua Magnum. The larger version will be chambered in .375 Chey Tac, .408 Chey Tac or .50 BMG.
Judging by the images, the rifle probably has upper and lower receivers with the grip mount/trigger guard assembly and magazine well attached separately to the lower receiver. The grip also looks to be an AR-15 one.
This is pretty much all the information available on this bullpup rifle so far. It is still in development and being tested by the designer.
Images from www.nfbv.ru, www.ohotniki.ru, forum.guns.ru, www.popgun.ru