I am in the process of acquiring the parts for a new precision rifle build. I would start a new Precision Rifle Project series of posts, but until I get all of the core components (specifically the action), I will simply post a preview article of my newly acquired MasterPiece Arms (MPA) BA Competition Chassis.
I opted for a non-folding MasterPiece Arms BA Competition Chassis in Flat Dark Earth (Cerakote) and inletted for a Remington 700 Short Action with a barrel contour up to M24/M40 maximum.
I ordered the chassis in March 2017 and during time it sat in the queue, MPA developed their Enhanced Vertical Grip which is now the standard option for MPA chassis systems.
It is important to note that the MPA EVG does have a thumb shelf on the shooting hand side.
They do not sell a left-handed EVG on the website, but I can only assume if you specify a left-handed chassis when you order (for a left-handed bolt action), the EVG will be designed with the thumb shelf on the left side. If you are a left-handed shooter using a right-handed bolt action, you may want to contact MPA when ordering to see if they can design the thumb shelf to be on the left side, even though you have a right-handed action.
The MPA BA Competition Chassis is relatively light at 4.9 lbs for a ‘standard’ configuration. Comparatively, the Accuracy International AT AICS (2.0 folding stock version) for the Remington 700 Short Action is 5.95 lbs.
Naturally, the MPA BA Competition Chassis is compatible with AICS magazines. The BA Competition version has a modified magazine well dubbed the Ryan Castle magwell cut.
The idea behind this cut is to give you a larger opening for magazine insertions (reloads) without flaring out the bottom of the magazine well.
The MPA BA Competition Chassis includes what MPA refers to as the Trinity Rail System.
The Trinity Rail attaches to the bottom of the chassis forend and can move along the entire length of the forend and locks into the slots on the chassis via MLOK nuts.
While specifically meant to provide an adjustable attachment point for a bipod, the Trinity Rail can be fitted with other attachment points (it comes fitted with a Picatinny rail by default).
The bottom of the MPA BA Competition Chassis forend also has MPA attachment points for the MPA rotating barricade stop.
The barricade stop can be moved along the bottom of the forend depending on the shooter’s preference.
The stock is adjustable for length of pull as well as cheek height.
When I unboxed the chassis and started inspecting it, I noticed the butt plate rattled.
After a quick glance of the instructions and watching a video published by MPA on YouTube, I realized there are two set screws that can be tightened down to secure the butt plate once it is in the desired position.
Also, the bag rider should be adjusted to be resting against the butt plate after the length of pull is set to further eliminate butt plate movement.
As far as the bag rider is concerned, I am happy that MPA included / integrated one into the design of the BA Competition Chassis. But in my opinion, the bag rider should be a little longer and I will most likely order the longer version sold by MPA.
The MPA BA Competition Chassis is also fitted with a bubble level.
The bubble level is user serviceable in that it can be swapped out if it cracks/breaks (MPA includes a spare).
One final item of note is the fact that MPA cut an Arca Swiss style dovetail into the bottom of the BA Competition Chassis forend.
This means that if you have an Arca Swiss style / compatible tripod head (e.g Really Right Stuff BH-55), you can use the MPA BA Competition Chassis directly with your tripod.
This is actually a nice feature so that you do not have to get yet another attachment or adapter to interface the rifle to a tripod. Although, I would have liked to see more surface contact area between the clamp and the dovetail on the chassis. Granted, I do not know what the tolerances are in the specification for an Arca Swiss style dovetail, so I do not know what else MPA could have done. I anticipate the Cerakote on the dovetail will probably wear out quickly, but this remains to be seen.
All in all, the MasterPiece Arms BA Competition Chassis is a very impressive chassis system. It took three months for mine to ship after the initial order, and production times are probably going to remain this way (if not get longer) due to MPA’s relationships and growing popularity in the Precision Rifle Series competitive arena.
As I write this, the price for the MPA BA Competition Chassis starts at $940 USD ($1090 for folding) and can be acquired in a multitude of Cerakoted finishes, and for many different action types including the Remington 700 footprint, all three Savage short action generations, and the Tikka T3 among others.
So for now, my MPA BA Competition Chassis will sit in the cabinet until the action I ordered arrives. Once that happens, I will post the first part of a new Precision Rifle Project series of articles with the background of my pending project.