Several months ago, JMS Tactical sent us one of their Remington 700 chassis to review. Dubbed the “JTAC-Thunder” this chassis offers a number of features that we have come to expect in a fully-adjustable precision rifle system along with some new tricks.
Out test chassis came equipped with a 14″ KeyMod tubular handguard. Tube hand guards are a needed feature on tactical rifles. The ability to attach lights and clip-on night vision far outweighs the weight penalty. However I also often find them useful in competition shooting. The tube serves to protect the barrel when shooting through non-traditional barricades and gives you more options on where to support the rifle.
While the JTAC-Thunder comes with a tube, you are not forced to use it. Our chassis also came with a “tray” that allows for complete removal of the tube. You are then left with a profile that is much more like a standard stock forend. If KeyMod is not your thing, JMS also offers a picatinny spec forend tube.
The JTAC-Thunder chassis uses AICS spec magazines. We had no problem using Accuracy International brand magazines or Magpul Pmag AC magazines. The magazine well is well machined with a beefy magazine release paddle. Magazines lock in and release smoothly. Five round AICS magazines fit almost flush to the bottom of the chassis.
The trigger guard on the JTAC-Thunder is a stout affair. It is integral to the chassis body and has no chance of bending. We had no problem fitting the oversized CG X-Treme Mod 22 trigger.
The inlet in the JTAC-Thunder is designed to accept the Remington 700 Short Action receiver. The recoil lug recess is large enough to accept oversized aftermarket lugs. On our chassis the lug recess measured .440″ thick by .720″ deep. JMS also made sure the trigger recess is sized to accept monster triggers like the David Tubb T7T.
The JTAC-Thunder comes standard as a folding stock. JMS tactical designed their own heavy duty hinge mechanism and manufactured it from S-7 Steel. The hinge is heat treated for durability and strength. Not only does the folding mechanism lock up tight, but it also locks in the “folded” configuration. No worries about a stock slamming closed on your fingers.
The chassis comes out of the box as a left folder. However it is a quick operation to switch it to a right side folder. Just loosing the screws holding the hinge allow you to flip it 180 degrees. You then have to swap the cheek riser bolt to the opposite side and you are done. Now when you fold the stock, it traps the bolt handle. This provides a thinner configuration for stowing in a scabbard. The buttstock has enough clearance to fold over the KRG Bolt Lift knob installed on our Remington 700.
The JTAC-Thunder stock features a tool-less adjustable comb and spacer-adjustable length of pull. The comb height can be quickly set and locked down by hand. The range of adjustment will cover a wide range of scope mount heights. The butt-pad does a good job of absorbing recoil and making long shooting sessions enjoyable.
The chassis comes equipped with a Hogue Over Molded grip although an Ergo Flat Top Palm Rest can be selected at the time of purchase. However, the chassis will accept any flat-top AR15 grip.
In use the JTAC-Thunder worked very well. The chassis easily allows for prone, barricade and off-hand shooting. Our test model was a little heavy at approximately 6 lbs. 6 oz. After speaking with JMS Tactical, they went back in and knocked a good deal of weight off the finished product. The current production model should weigh in around four pounds.
The current production run JTAC-Thunder chassis will also include a bubble level built-in.
The V-Bedding system on the JTAC cradled our factory Remington 700 action well. The combined system was able to produce accuracy equal to when the same action was installed in some very expensive chassis. The chassis cannot make your rifle more accurate, but it will allow your barreled action to perform at its best. Granted, our factory 700 AAC-SD barrel with thousands of rounds through it is not a laser, but the groups with the JTAC-Thunder were still sub-MOA.
The JTAC-Thunder Chassis starts at $995.00. For this price you are getting the folding chassis with your choice of grip and forend tube in a single Cerakoted color. For an additional $50 you can do a two-tone Cerakote job. Adding $100 will get you a black, white or green Multicam style Cerakote pattern. Overall the JTAC is a good value for the competition-ready options it adds to your rifle system.