Review: FightLite SCR

by
posted on June 10, 2024
Review Fightlite SCR Lead

ARs are fantastic, partly because they make the anti-Second Amendment crowd go into laughable histrionics. From a practical standpoint, they are available in seemingly unlimited configurations, use detachable magazines and are easy to reload. The modularity baked into the design makes it simple for the user to swap out almost any component with a minimum of specialized tools or skill. It’s a degree of versatility not available with most hunting rifles.

FightLite SCR AR-15 style rifle facing right.

So, to take advantage of the AR’s ingrained goodness, just use one as a hunting rifle, right? Sure. But what if you would rather have something more traditionally configured with a buttstock and no separate pistol grip, yet retain most of the benefits of an AR-style rifle? If that appeals to you, then FightLite has your number with their Sport Configurable Rifle, or SCR for short.

While not specifically made for hunting, the SCR has some of the feel of a compact hunting rifle. A defining feature of the SCR is its traditionally shaped buttstock used in place of the standard AR buffer, tube and stock system. The SCR also ditches the separate pistol grip of a typical AR. To do this, the SCR uses a unique lower receiver that allows the use of a traditional buttstock that contains a proprietary spring and buffer in the pistol grip portion. This buffer and spring system work with a proprietary bolt carrier. The SCR’s lower receiver is longer than a standard AR’s and uses a proprietary trigger and crossbolt safety at the rear of the trigger guard.

What gives the SCR similar modularity and versatility as a standard AR is it uses any AR upper receiver assembly. This means that any cartridge used in a standard AR will work with the SCR. You only have to change over to FightLite’s proprietary bolt carrier. Then it’s as simple as swapping out the uppers just like any other AR. The Fightlite SCR uses a standard AR-15 bolt, AR magazine release and bolt release buttons and charging handle. It of course uses standard AR magazines.

SCRs are currently available in .223 Remington with 16.25-inch barrels, both threaded and non-threaded. The barrels are a 1:9 twist, so you will be relegated to lighter .223 loadings such as 55- or 62-grain bullets. The rifles can be had with a combination of polymer buttstocks and free-float M-LOK handguard, or with a wood buttstock and free-float M-LOK handguard. Our test sample features their free-float M-LOK handguard and polymer buttstock with push-button QD sling cups. All SCRs have standard flat top receivers with a full receiver-length Picatinny rail.

An interesting result of this unique configuration is that it weighs only 5.9 pounds, which makes it about a half-pound lighter than many standard AR carbines. It also has good ergonomics. I was skeptical at first about manipulating the AR charging handle, magazine release and bolt release while holding the SCR like a conventionally stocked rifle, but it was natural and fluid. The only caveat is it took me a while to remember it had a crossbolt safety. With practice that muscle memory should kick in without an issue.

FightLite SCR rifle components broken down.

The optics mounting geometry for the SCR can be viewed as an advantage or disadvantage depending on the optic and your point of view. The comb height of the SCR allows the use of scope rings lower than standard AR height rings and mounts. Thus, you can mount the scope closer to the centerline of the bore. Some shooters prefer this, and it means less adjusting for the line-of-sight to point-of-impact offset at closer ranges, which can be a factor when dealing with smaller targets. Realistically, it doesn’t matter for most targets or ranges out past 100 yards. The disadvantage to this setup is that many optics, like Trijicon ACOGs, EOTech holographic sights and one-piece cantilever mounts for ARs are designed with a comb height that is aligned with the top of the receiver, so the mounts are higher than most traditional scope rings. This forces you to raise your cheek weld on the stock quite a bit to get proper eye alignment.

Accuracy testing was done at 100 yards using a Leupold VX-6HD 3-18x44, an Atlas bipod and rear support bag. The ammunition consisted of various loads from Federal, Hornady and Remington. Overall, the rifle shot well, turning in average group sizes between just under one MOA to 1.5 MOA. The trigger pull weight averaged 4 pounds, 6.5 ounces. The threaded barrel was great for shooting in a civilized manner with a suppressor, in this case a Silencer Central Banish 223. Not surprisingly the groups were just as good, albeit with a significant point of impact shift.

Given the SCR’s hybrid nature, I wanted to check out the ergonomics and see how the manual of arms felt compared to a standard AR. Overall it has a great feel to it, just like shooting a conventionally stocked rifle. Because the SCR doesn’t have a pistol grip protruding from the bottom, it is shallower than a standard AR and you can get lower to the ground if using a five- or 10-round magazine. This made it easy and convenient to shoot off a pack and from stumps and other objects. It takes a bit to get used to the crossbolt safety, and unless you have fingers like an orangutan you can’t reach the magazine release without taking your hand off the stock.

Part of the allure of an AR is that you can swap uppers for a different configuration or a different cartridge. It would make a great little semi-auto hunting rifle to use an SCR lower with an upper in something like a 6mm ARC or 350 Legend for those straight-walled cartridge states. I put a 6mm ARC upper assembly onto the SCR lower with no issues.

The SCR intrigued me when it first hit the market. It seemed like it might be a great rifle for hunting and sporting applications while maintaining most of the advantages of an AR-15. The SCR does not disappoint in this regard. Sure, it’s a little funky looking, like something you might have seen the rebels carrying in “Rogue One,” but it’s a comfortable rifle to maneuver and shoot. Frankly, I wouldn’t feel handicapped shooting this in a 3-gun match or even setting it up for home-defense. This is important, because at the time this was written, the FightLite website says this rifle can ship to an FFL in all 50 states, which is one of the main reasons for this rifle’s existence. Whether your choice of rifles is limited because of onerous firearm regulations, or you prefer a more traditionally configured rifle, the SCR is a great option you should consider.

FightLite SCR accuracy results chart with five factory loads.

Technical Specifications
Type: semi-auto centerfire rifle
Caliber: .223/5.56mm
Magazine: detachable; 5-rnd. capacity
Barrel: 16.25"; 1:9" twist; 1/2"x28 threaded muzzle (tested)
Gas-System Length: mid-length
Trigger: 4 lbs., 6.5 ozs. pull weight
Sights: none
Safety: cross-bolt
Stock: SCR polymer rifle stock; 13.5" LOP; FightLite free-floating, aluminum fore-end
Metal Finish: black anodize
Overall Length: 37.75"
Weight: 5.9 lbs.
Accessories: none
MSRP: $1,299.99; fightlite.com

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