I first fired one of the new Thompson/Center Compass
rifles at a pre-release event and was immediately hooked, so I talked
to the editors here at GunsAmerica about publishing a full review.
It’s a very affordable rifle that shoots and handles like a very
unaffordable rifle. What’s not to love about that? They agreed.
Towards the end of my 780-round shooting binge, I might have slipped off the rifle rest…
first impression of the Compass was very favorable. It’s not like I
fired a few shots and made some snap judgment. Rather, I came to that
conclusion after firing over 780 rounds from the same rifle in just two
days. For a bolt-action rifle, that might qualify as cruel and inhumane
punishment, especially considering that the barrel got so hot, I
completely melted a rifle rest. Still no word on whether the gunsmiths
back at Smith & Wesson have removed all the melted goo from that
Anyway, I shot the heck out of one of these rifles, chambered in
.204 Ruger, and it performed. As a result, I wanted to get my hands on a
more versatile caliber model and give it a more in-depth trial.