MDT Hunter Chassis Review
- Dylan C. @ GunSpot
- Sep 01 2022
The Model 2020 Waypoint made its big debut in the bolt action hunting rifle world in 2020, hence the name. The Waypoint is pretty remarkable in many ways. The accuracy is crazy, and the carbon fiber makes the Waypoint an uber lightweight rifle. For hunters packing their rifles in on hunts that require hiking, a lightweight rifle can be a lifesaver or, more appropriately, a back saver. The Waypoint model we have on hand is the non-adjustable stock version with the carbon fiber barrel. This unit weighs 6 lbs and 12 ounces from the factory. Of course, once you start adding bipods and optics, the rifle will weigh down, but that is an incredibly light starting point. But there are ways to get it even lighter.
MDT is known for making great chassis systems, and they make a super lightweight chassis that will fit the Waypoint. MDT's first-ever hunting chassis is the HNT26, and we got the chance to put it to use with the Waypoint. The HNT26 chassis will fit Remmington, Savage, and Tikka actions; it comes in two color options Black Carbon Fiber and Cobalt Green. The buttstock can be purchased in either a folding or solid stock.
The HNT26 Chassis System is the first truly purpose-built hunting chassis from MDT. The company usually makes systems for tactical shooting or sports shooting like PRS and NRL competitions. MDT stated that they came to the realization that their stocks were being used in the hunting world quite a bit, so they decided to make a product specifically for that audience.
The MDT HNT26 Chassis is constructed with a magnesium alloy base and a carbon fiber forend, a carbon fiber grip, and a foam-filled carbon fiber buttstock. This hunting chassis has V block bedding, length of pull, and cheek weld adjustments, and it has AICS magazine compatibility. MDT also provided the option of standard M-LOK rails, or you can choose ARCA rails if you have an ARCA tripod. The best part is this Chassis only weighs 26 ounces which is insanely light.
Here at GunSpot, we put our Waypoint into the MDT HNT26, along with the Surefire Socom 65-Ti. For an optic, we mounted up the Bushnell Match Pro in some Badger Ordnance Rings with an Atlas Bipod. The entire package only weighs 10.2 pounds. Considering the factory stock, Waypoint weighs 6 lbs and 12 oz making our only difference in weight around 4 pounds after adding a suppressor, rings, an optic, and a bipod is beyond impressive.
Our HNT26 chassis is one of the ones that comes with a folding buttstock which is one of the coolest features. The folding mechanism is super easy to use, and it will lock the stock once it's folded into a parallel position with the rest of the gun. Making it a secure lock that keeps the stock from swinging around and coming unfolded. I could see how a folding stock would come in handy for backpacking on a hunt in rough terrain. The total folded length of the stock is around 20.6", shortening it up quite a bit from the full nearly 30" stock.
In our brief experience of using the HNT26, we can say it feels very sturdy and durable, even with its lightweight. It's no secret that the strongest carbon fibers are ten times stronger than steel and about five times to 1.5 times lighter than both steel and aluminum. So, the strength of the Chassis shouldn't come as a surprise.
All in all, the MDT Chassis is a great, strong, and unbelievably light platform with great features for both precision and hunting features, all rolled into one. The lightweight ness of the stock didn't seem to cause the Waypoint's 6.5 Creedmoor to have any harsher recoil than before. The Waypoint, as we mentioned, is already pretty light, so we didn't notice the recoil being any more violent. If you need the Waypoint to be light for the ability to take it backpacking into hunting territory, then I urge you to give this Chassis a serious look. If you are wondering about the accuracy, don't, because the Waypoint was still shooting ¾ MOA groups at 100 yards using our Winchester Deer Season XP ammo.