Voere now offers three lines of high precision rifles, all based on the 20-03 model. The X3 is the third besides the LBW-M with match qualities and the LBW for hunting purposes. Calibres are available between .222 Remington and .375 H & H Magnum. The LBW-M2 ist the law enforcement variation of the M-series, designed for calibres up to .338 Lapua Magnum. Now there’s also a new kid on the block: the X3 for calibres between .308 Winchester and .408 CheyTac, also designed especially for law enforcement. At IWA 2013 in Nuremberg two X3-prototpyes were at hand – one of them ended up in our hands. So we had the chance to test it exclusively in .408 CheyTac and .308 Winchester.
The X3 is a modular design like the LBW-M and LBW-M2 series. Customers can choose between different calibres, barrels, stocks, coatings, triggers, bolt handles and grips. Because the X3 also uses the .408 CheyTac, the barrel housing dimensions are a little bit wider. Barrels are interchangeable between LBW-M and LBW-M2 but not with the X3 series.
Voere offers different barrels in .308 Winchester. They can be made of regular steel, with carbon coating or with integrated silencer. The serial production contains a metrical right hand 19 x 1 threading on the muzzle. On our prototype it carried a massive three chamber muzzle break. On top of that an additional muzzle flash suppresor can be mounted. The user also can mount an iron sight on the upper side of the break.
All these details show what customers the producer is aiming on: police and military. Besides that also sport shooters can buy this repating rifle.
The eight 455 mm long cannelures are a matter of taste. They’re intended to force the cooling of the barrel. With a wider surface of a barrel, the air above it starts flickering earlier – the other side of the coin. The backward end of the cone-shaped barrel is screwed into a bushing. That’s where the lugs of the bolt lock. The bushing also has two drilled bleed off holes that raise security if high pressure gas escaping from a damaged primer or case should search its way backwards.
The X3 system is intended to guarantee a fast barrel change – and it does so. The shooter has to unfasten two screws on the lower and the left hand side of the weapon to draw the barrel forward out of the system. This is a comfortable solution, the barrel change takes less than one minute. It’s easier if you set the weapon on its butt plate in upward position, so you’ll avoid cant. The barrel length results in a strong arm of lever that otherwise could damage the system.
The receiver itself consists of a high grade aluminium alloy. The over all mass stays arguable with 7,6 kg respectively 8,6 kg. The surface of the system and all other metal parts of the present weapon are cerakoted. This is abrasion-proof, hard and durable. The part of the system where the barrel finds its place has a placket where the steel block sits. Two screws tighten the placket and clamp the barrel jacket.
The block restricts the tightening. The system can’t be warped. After unfastening the screws the system springs back and gives the block free.
The bolt has a mass of only 390 g and is made of aluminium. Good, this saves weight. Flutes support its operability with frozen or dirty weapon. The bolt handle has a bend in the present weapon, but Voere also offers straight or hunting handles.
When changing the calibre the shooter only has to change the steel bolt head, no additional new complete bolt is needed. That’s similar to the LBW system. The X3 system has four different bolt head dimensions.
The patented hand cocking system sits on the back side of the bolt and saves the fire pin. It works like a ball pen. Pressed once the repeating rifle is in firing condition, pressed twice it is uncocked. That’s why the weapon can also be carried with inserted magazine and loaded chamber.
With pressed handle the firing pin spring is cocked, when pressed again the nose of the firng pin has no more contact to the notch. As an option Voere offers an additional trigger safety and also a bolt safety. There you have to press the cocking handle sightly to open the bolt. The additional safety is usefull when you’re aiming. In safe position (crank up) the rest is blocked and has no connection to the trigger. Pushing the crank down unlocks the notch.
The magazines made of steel are as solid as the weapon itself. The .308 Winchester magazine holds six rounds, the .408 CheyTac version, only five. For other calibres, magazines are available with seven and ten round capacity.
Like all LBW models the X3 is available with fixed stock. The prototype we tested had a massive folding stock made of aluminium. Next to the barrel and the trigger it gained its merits. It can be fixed with absolutely no tolerance and above all adjusted to the shooters stature.
The stock lenght can be modified in four steps of overall 48 mm. You only have to press a (hard-steering) knob between but plate and skid.
The cheek piece is stageless adjustable 19 mm in height. In addition it can be shifted 20 mm in longitudinal direction via six detents. Altogether there are 24 variations. Also the rubber butt plate can be adjusted 70 mm in height. So the testers were able to adapt the weapon perfectly to their needs and body dimensions.
The skid has an adjustable stroke of 83 mm in 5 mm steps. A knurled bushing is responsable for the fine tunig of up to 4 mm with 1,5 mm per turn. The non shooting hand can adjust the skid very easy and also press the weapon into the shoulder. The mechanism of the skid is good – after the shot we didn’t have to adjust it or at most fractional.
To fold the stock the user only has to pull it a little bit. The detachable pistol grip with its three finger „recesses“ offers comfort thanks to the rest for the ball of the thumb. Nearly every AR-15-grip fits to the X3. The pressure point trigger with its 700 g to 1200 g weight also gives a nice impression. Who doesn’t like that can order a direct trigger with optional trigger safety.
To get maximum precision, our tester Christopher Hocke cleaned both barrels with Robla Solo Mil and Robla Solo Force products. The .408 CheyTac barrel had already worked before we got it in our hands. That‘s why it was sufficient to clean it chemically after every 20th round. We advise this with brass solids to keep precision high. The .308 Win. barrel was new and therefore was cleaned chemically ten times after every fifth round.
We fired the rifle on 100 m and 300 m on a range and on 500 m in RUAGs special shooting indoor tunnel at Fürth/Germany. A Drello measuring system was used to meter the muzzle velocity.
The combination of Harris bipod and skid guarantee a solid base, we didn’t need a bench rest.
We used one of the new Hensoldt 3,5-26 x 56 riflescopes , our sample was from the initial batch. The field of view is absolutely sharp also in the border area, all turrets were easy and smooth to handle – best conditions for a precision test.
Also the high mass of the rifle has some advantages (ca 9 kg in .308 Winchester and ca 10 kg in .408 CheyTac). With the mounted muzzle break shooting was very comfortable. A shooter's shoulder can stand a series of 100 rounds without any problem. The break in both calibres can be rated as good or very good – kept in mind that in .308 Win. the long barrel itself already minimizes the pressure at the muzzle, the impulse on the baffles is, according to this, quite mild.
Also the stock convinced us. Voere claimed that they kept an eye on the straigt line of the impulse into the shoulder so there was no angle nor applied moment.
The X3 only pushes backwards, our test confirmed it.
In a test report one should not praise the object to the skies, but precision of X3 was outstanding. On 100 m in .308 Winchester we shot ¼ MOA, up to less than 1/3 MOA in .408 CheyTac. This are diametres of 7 mm to 9 mm and 12 mm.
Also the function gave no reason for criticism. We fired ca 160 rounds without problems in feeding, ignition of primers or extraction of the cases.
Voere’s X3 is a quality product in the meaning of the word. First class workmanship, outstandig trigger and adjustable butt stock let all wishes come true. Even in .408 CheyTac – a calibre for hard men – the weapon convinced with a conveniant recoil. Also the new barrel in .308 Winchester produced excellent groups. The repeat accuracy of barrel changes also was satisfying. The base price of 8200 Euro might be hard bread for most interested shooters. The package contains a barrel and a bolt. Most shooters also will not appreciate the advantages of the .408 CheyTac because shooting ranges with 300 m and more are scarce.
If an agency buys the X3 one thing is clear: This time by way of exception the tax payers money is not wasted.
Model: Voere X3
Price: starting 8233,80 €
Calibres: .308 Winchester / .408 CheyTac (CT)
Capacity: 6 + 1 / 5 + 1 rounds
Mass: 7590 g / 8610 g (with empty magazine, without mount and riflescope)
Length: (.308 Win. /.408 CT): 1250-1300 mm / 1310-1360 mm, with open stock
Barrel (.308 Win.): 665 mm, four grooves RH, twist leght 305 mm
Barrel (.408 CT): 727 mm, six grooves RH, twist lenght 457 - 330 mm
Construction and variations:
repeating rifle with fluted, changeable match barrels (.408 CT: equipped as standard with progressive twist), muzzle breaks, pistol grip, Harris bipod, hand guard with Picatinny rails, pressure point trigger, adjustable aluminium butt stock, one-piece Voere block mount, steel panel magazines.