Remington 783 Varmint Review

Remington 783 Varmint Review

In 2013, Remington introduced the Model 783 bolt-action rifle in the highly competitive budget-rifle market. A distinct design departure from the beloved Model 700, the Model 783 provides performance-­oriented features designed to optimize a rifle’s accuracy.

In 2019, they hulked up the Model 783 and introduced a new model for varmint hunting, appropriately named the Varmint. The most distinctive features that separate the Varmint from the standard 783 model are the 26-inch barrel and wood-laminate stock. Other details include an oversized bolt handle and a Picatinny rail. These enhancements also increased the price from $354 to $625. You can find a Varmint at your local gun shop for around $500, keeping it within arm’s reach of affordability.

Remington 783 Varmint
A smaller ejection port allows for a stiffer receiver. The Picatinny rail provides the shooter with more eye-relief options.

Barrel Difference

The Varmint has a heavy profiled, button-­rifled barrel. It’s free-floated and has a nonthreaded crowned muzzle. The Varmint models are chambered in .223 Rem., .22-250 Rem., .243 Win., 6.5 Creedmoor and .308 Win. Remington uses a drop-box, double-stacked magazine that sits flush with the bottom of the stock.

Long, heavy barrels are favored by precision rifle shooters and varmint hunters. These stout barrels allow for higher velocities and are not as sensitive to heat as standard-profile barrels. The extra mass also improves shooting stability and reduces felt recoil.


The extra 4 inches of the Varmint barrel (over a standard model’s 22-inch barrel) allows additional velocity. There are too many variables to give a hard number, but for a 6.5 Creedmoor or .308 Win., the increase is around 20 to 25 feet per second (fps) per inch of barrel. That amounts to 80 to 100 fps increase in velocity over the standard model.


The increased weight of the barrel benefits a shooter looking for a stable rifle for quick follow-up shots. A heavy barrel also heats up slower than a thinner barrel, allowing a greater amount of shots before precision is affected. When shooting at small targets like varmints, these benefits become paramount.

Remington 783 Varmint
An indicator shows when the rifle is cocked.

Some people may think that the combination of a higher-velocity projectile and heavy barrel makes the rifle more accurate, this is not the case since accuracy is independent of these factors. The extra velocity gained reduces the bullet’s flight time, thus lessening the exposure to environmental effects like gravity and wind, while a heavier rifle will aid stability.

In a perfect world, this means that the bullet will get to its destination in a shorter amount of time from when you pull the trigger, and the rifle will be quicker to stabilize. The result is that your hit percentage will increase.

No Action Clone

The rounded steel receiver is a push-feed, two-lug bolt design, but it isn’t a Model 700 clone. The port is smaller, and the bolt head has its own unique design.


Another important difference is that the barrel interfaces with the receiver using a Savage-style barrel nut rather being shouldered to the receiver. Remington engineers chose this with manufacturability in mind. According to Remington the barrel nut is a fast attachment method, so headspace can easily be set to a minimum. 

Remington 783 Varmint
Remington’s 783 incorporates a barrel nut for easier barrel changes.

For the shooter, the advantage of a barrel nut is the ability to easily switch barrels and set a minimum headspace with go/no-go gauges. 

On top of the receiver, you’ll find a Picatinny rail with zero cant. The advantages of a Picatinny rail are that it allows greater eye-relief adjustment and makes it easier when swapping optics between rifles.


Bolt Design

Getting back to the bolt design, the 783 series uses a Savage-style floating bolt head that is pinned to the body. The advantage to a floating bolt head is that the play in the bolt head allows the lugs to adjust themselves to bear evenly against the receiver recess, even when the surface is not perfectly trued. This makes for solid lockup of the bolt while maintaining full contact with the cartridge, both of which aid accuracy. Other differences include a lateral sliding extractor on the outward lug and a small diameter plunger-style ejector.

Remington 783 Varmint
Even though this rifle is considered “budget,” the design gives the gun a quality feel.

The bolt may be designed differently than a Model 700, but it still runs like a Remington. The oversized bolt handle is easy to grasp, and the smooth raceways make for a quick-cycling bolt. On budget rifles, I often have to work the bolt a while to adapt to the loose play in tolerances or rough raceways. With the 783 Varmint, I quickly found the right cycling rhythm. It wasn’t finicky nor did it have too much play when completely drawn.

Stock Upgrade

The barreled action sits in a wood-­laminate stock. The stock is not just a cosmetic upgrade; Remington chose a laminate stock for its durability and stability. The stock is made from Birch and has a natural satin finish and is a blend of classic and modern designs. The buttstock is a traditional design, but the forend is a modern beavertail and is channeled to free-float the heavy-­profiled barrel.

The feel of a wood stock is unique. It has a heft and stiffness that synthetic stocks in this price range lack. Visually, the areas where multiple layers of laminate are exposed are exceptionally attractive and accentuate the beauty of stock’s curves. Remington did a nice job finishing the stock. Even the bed of the stock has clean, smooth cuts and no rough edges.

Remington 783 Varmint
The stock comes with two sling-swivel studs up front and one in the rear.

In my hands, the stock feels like I can crack baseballs with it. The forend fills my hand nicely, and its wide, flat bottom provides a solid platform when shooting off a backpack or other improvised support. The stock has three swivel studs, two in the forend and one in the rear. Remington’s SuperCell recoil pad completes the stock.

Crossfire Trigger

If you’re familiar with Marlin’s X7 Pro-Fire trigger, you’ll recognize the Varmint’s Crossfire trigger. The Crossfire trigger was brought over from Marlin after they discontinued the X7 line. Like other triggers in this vein, the blade is a passive safety and prevents the sear from dropping unless depressed. This feature also makes a trigger with little creep and a crisp release.

The Crossfire is user adjustable from 3 to 5 pounds. I checked to see how it came from the factory, and it measured 3 pounds, 13 ounces. I like a slightly lower weight for a hunting rifle, so I tweaked it down to 3 pounds.

Accessing the adjustment screw requires removing the stock. Adjusting the trigger is as simple as fiddling with a nut and then using an Allen key to move an Allen screw in or out. A counter-­clockwise turn decreases trigger weight.

Remington 783 Varmint
To adjust the trigger, loosen the front nut then turn the Allen screw.

The two-position safety is located on the right side and doesn’t lock the bolt in the safe position.

Final Touches

Flipping the rifle over to expose its belly shows where Remington saves you money. They have done away with bottom metal and replaced it with a plastic triggerguard that’s large enough to fit a gloved finger and a small metal magazine catch. The front takedown screw holds the metal magazine catch.

The flush-mounted box magazine holds four to five cartridges depending on caliber. Its walls are steel and uses a plastic follower and a plastic bottom plate. The magazine release sits in front of the magazine and is a simple but effective leaf spring with a plastic tab. The tab is slightly recessed in the well, which removes the danger of disengaging it if you set the belly directly on a support. The positive aspect of this design is that the magazine engages aggressively; there is no doubt it’s well seated. The negative is that the pop the leaf spring makes as it engages the catch will sound loud in the field.

Remington 783 Varmint
The drop-box magazine fits flush with the bottom of the stock, and its high-tension leaf spring holds it in place.

The improvements Remington has made with the Varmint makes you forget that this is a budget-friendly rifle. The wood laminate stock and 26-inch barrel are great performance upgrades. Combined with the Crossfire trigger, there is nothing that hampers this rifle from being a devastating pest eradicator.

Remington 783 Varmint

  • Type: Bolt-action repeater
  • Cartridge: .223 Rem., .22-250 Rem., .243 Win., 6.5 Creedmoor, .308 Win.
  • Capacity: 4+1 rds.
  • Barrel: 26-in., 1:8-in. twist
  • Overall Length: 45.75 in.
  • Weight: 9 lbs.
  • Stock: Wood laminate
  • Finish: Matte blue
  • Trigger: Crossfire; 3-5 lbs.
  • Sights: None
  • Safety: Two position
  • MSRP: $625
  • Manufacturer: Remington, remington.com

PRS2

To read more articles like this, click here to purchase a print or digital copy of Precision Rifle Shooter #2.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Trijicon

Trijicon's New Specialized Reflex Optics (SRO)

The Trijicon SRO is specifically designed for pistol use. The wide field of view and clean, crisp dot makes it easy for users to find and track the dot in both target and competitive shooting applications.

Hornady 6MM Creedmoor

Hornady 6MM Creedmoor

Tom Beckstrand and Neal Emery of Hornady highlight the 6MM Creedmoor ammo.

Gun Clips with Joe Mantegna - 94 WINCHESTER

Gun Clips with Joe Mantegna - 94 WINCHESTER

Joe Mantegna talks about the origins of the 94 Winchester rifle.

Black Hills Evolution of Rifle Cartridge: .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match

Black Hills Evolution of Rifle Cartridge: .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match

David Fortier talks with Jeff Hoffman of Black Hills Ammunition about the evolution of the .308 Win. 175 Gr. Match bullet.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Don't underestimate the fun factor. Shotguns

Review: Remington V3 TAC-13

Brad Fitzpatrick - March 08, 2019

Don't underestimate the fun factor.

The one glaring weakness in the .30-­caliber magnum cartridge lineup is best highlighted by examining the requirement around which Hornady designed the .300 PRC; the requirement came from the U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM). Rifle

.300 PRC Review

Tom Beckstrand - March 12, 2019

The one glaring weakness in the .30-­caliber magnum cartridge lineup is best highlighted by...

The Winchester .350 Legend straight-wall cartridge is ideally suited for hunting hogs and deer; here's everything you need to know to make it work for you. Rifle

.350 Legend Cartridge: Everything You Need to Know

Tom Beckstrand - April 02, 2019

The Winchester .350 Legend straight-wall cartridge is ideally suited for hunting hogs and...

Crossbreed's new The Reckoning holster is a simple leather-Kydex combination with multiple points of retention adjustment and clip options. Accessories

Crossbreed's The Reckoning Holster

Eric R. Poole - May 13, 2019

Crossbreed's new The Reckoning holster is a simple leather-Kydex combination with multiple...

See More Trending Articles

More Reviews

The WCP320 is the next big thing in striker fired guns. This one is where striker-­fired reliability meets custom-­gun performance, and it doesn't get any better than this.  Reviews

Wilson Combat WCP320 Review

Jeremy Stafford - July 21, 2020

The WCP320 is the next big thing in striker fired guns. This one is where striker-­fired...

Testing an M1D with a M84 scope that has won or placed highly in CMP Vintage Sniper Rifle matches, a 1950-production Winchester Model 70 Heavy Barrel Target model with an 8X Unertl scope, and a 1944-vintage 91/30 PU. Reviews

Early Vietnam Sniper Rifles

Dave Emary - June 29, 2020

Testing an M1D with a M84 scope that has won or placed highly in CMP Vintage Sniper Rifle...

At the 2020 SHOT Show, Kimber launched the Rapide Black Ice to much enthusiasm, and a new advertisement promoting it began appearing on the back cover of firearm publications, including this one. So, what makes this 1911 special? Guns & Ammo editors ordered one to find out. Reviews

Kimber Rapide Black Ice Review

Brad Fitzpatrick - July 13, 2020

At the 2020 SHOT Show, Kimber launched the Rapide Black Ice to much enthusiasm, and a new...

The CZ Shadow 2 OR features a rear slide cut to accept optic-­specific sight plates. Included with Guns & Ammo's sample was a sight plate for the Trijicon RMR, which shares the same footprint with the SRO. (Optics are not included.) Reviews

CZ Shadow 2 OR Review

Chris Cerino - July 06, 2020

The CZ Shadow 2 OR features a rear slide cut to accept optic-­specific sight plates. Included...

See More Reviews

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Guns and Ammo subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now