I own several of the original Springfield SAINT 5.56 NATO rifles. I find them good rifles and among the best buys of any AR-15 rifle.
I own several AR rifles and have not yet fired the SAINT as extensively as I would like — bad on me.
On the other hand, I own only one .308 Winchester AR and have fired it a lot and hope to fire even more. The SAINT has bulked up into a .308 rifle.
While the 5.56 NATO may be America’s favorite caliber, the .308 Winchester is more powerful and more accurate at greater range.
For medium game, the .308 Winchester is more certain. Some of us just like the .308.
I suppose they have been spoiled by the .223 Remington.
The Springfield SAINT
The SAINT enjoys an excellent reputation. If you pay more for a rifle, be certain you get your money’s worth. The SAINT is a reliable and accurate firearm.
It is arguably the best buy among modern AR-15 rifles, or at least one of the top two or three.
Much of what we see in the Springfield SAINT Victor is standard fare, but it is done well in this scaled-up AR rifle.
The Victor uses a gas-impingement action and Magpul magazines. I am all for high capacity, but for bench resting the rifle, I used the Magpul 10-round magazine.
The rifle is supplied with a high-quality carrying case. The finish is Melonite, a proven coating, and the barrel is a 1:10 inch twist chrome-moly job.
The barrel is also tipped with a muzzle brake. The barrel is 16 inches in length, making the SAINT Victor a carbine.
The SAINT Victor isn’t as light as some rifles, but it is not a heavy rifle either. It is just right I would say for the .308 Winchester cartridge.
For many years, we have used various devices from the humble red plug up to bedding to eliminate play between the upper and lower receiver.
This rifle features a factory-installed Accu-Tite device. This device cinches up the receivers and may be tightened as needed.
The rifle features plenty of room for optics, lights and lasers. The rifle also features a gas-regulation system.
It is accessed from the muzzle end by means of a long, thin wrench. Metering screws are color-coded and there is a single screw as well that offers multiple adjustment.
This allows the use of light or heavy handloads and fine-tuning the rifle for suppressor use if desired.
SAINT Victor Features
The controls are standard AR-15 type. This means good ergonomics and handling. There is no learning curve if you own an AR.
If you don’t, the controls are as natural as scratching your head or touching your nose. The trigger is a standard AR type.
At seven pounds, it isn’t light, but it is tight and works fine in benchrest firing.
An excellent addition to this, or any other AR-type rifle, is the Wilson Combat TR-TTU-M2 two-stage trigger.
This is the premier AR trigger, at least in my gun safe.
The bottom line is that while the Wilson Combat unit offers a crisp 4.1 pound trigger, the company’s products are proven in hard use by professionals.
I like this trigger very much. The overall practical accuracy of the rifle is improved by this trigger and so is the ease of getting fast hits offhand.
This rifle is a fine all-around defensive rifle, a great hunting rifle for medium-sized game, and fine recreational shooter.
The Springfield SAINT Victor is supplied with iron sights, but these sights, well good examples of the type, limit accuracy past 100 yards.
The Warne R.A.M.P. (Rapid Acquisition Multi-Sight Platform) cantilever mount was bolted to the rifle and a Leupold scope added next.
If there is a finer all-around rifle scope than the Leupold Vari-X6, or one with a better reputation, I have not seen it.
I ordered the Fire Dot reticle, as the illuminated reticle really helps in all lighting conditions.
I have fired about 1,000 rounds in the rifle to date with no failures to feed, chamber, fire or eject, and have experienced a high degree of practical accuracy.
That isn’t a lot of ammunition over the course of a year or so, I wish I had fired more!
Shooting the Springfield SAINT Victor
The story in accuracy in this rifle comes in several stages.
With iron sights and the original trigger using my own handloads and inexpensive FMJ factory loads, the rifle easily groups three shots into 2.0 inches or less at 50 yards.
Firing off hand quickly, the rifle is controllable with good hit probability. I added a TruGlo red dot at one point. The rifle proved even faster on target.
This is the setup for personal defense and perhaps hog hunting. Finally, I bit the bullet so to speak and added a Leupold Vari-X.
The rifle simply deserved this optic.
Firing for accuracy off a solid benchrest at a long 100 yards, practically any loads would put three rounds into 2.0 inches at the football-field length as the rifle was issued.
Among the most accurate loads have been the Hornady Critical Defense and Hornady A-MAX loads. I would feel confident with this rifle in practically any role.
I wish to stress that the Leupold scope makes this rifle a capable piece to more than 200 yards.
When perimeter defense is needed, your skill is the final arbiter of how wide the perimeter is.
I am continuing to experiment with the SAINT Victor. Fitting the Wilson Combat trigger resulted in a flat 0.5 inch off the final grouping at 100 yards.
But the real difference is in offhand speed. The rifle is much faster to a solid hit with this trigger.
Keeping in mind this is a fairly light carbine not a heavy target rifle I have managed several 1.5-inch, three-shot groups at 100 yards.
The Springfield SAINT Victor is well worth its price.
Have you tried shooting the Springfield SAINT Victor? Tell us what you thought in the comments section below!