Talbot QD Mounts
By Thomas Blahnik
© Sniper's paradise 1999
The Talbot QD Mounting system came to us for review by chance. A rifle we received for testing came with come extra goodies. In addition to the rifle we expected, we also received the Talbot QD system. The mount came to us on a Remington 700 LTR, the new 20 inch fluted barrel morph. A quick call to the company sending the rifle revealed that the extra rifle, optics, and mounting system were a last minute decision. The company representative on the phone assured us that we would be very pleased with the mounts. Well we were familiar with the rifle and we had tested quick release mounts in the past. Quick release mounts in the past have never been good enough for us to consider putting them on a precision rifle.
We already had plenty of time behind the Rem LTR so there would be no surprises here and we knew what we could and should expect as far as performance. Our QD mount that arrived was the standard Matte Blue Steel version, but learned that there are also Matte Stainless Steel or 2024 Aircraft Aluminum versions available. We were also quite surprised to see the number of rifles that the mounting system was made for. The mounts are currently built for more than 20 different rifles systems, plus rings are built in either 1" or 30mm in all the above material variants. Al Talbot has obviously been working hard to make this mounting system a standard by which others will follow. We would soon see if the system really worked as designed.
Our test rifle came with two different scopes. One scope was a standard hunting variation while the other was a Red-Dot type. This would give us a mixture and we could keep switching back and forth between the two. The first thing we had to do was zero both scopes. Each scope in turn was mounted on the rifle and zeroed, then set aside. Testing would begin the following day.
We decided that our test targets would be simple. There would be sets of two dots arranged in two columns and multiple rows. Each column had a set of 1" dots per riflescope. This would give us a nice side-by-side comparison each time we shot. The plan was to fire 5 rounds with the hunting scope at the first dot in the first row. We would then remove that scope and replace it with the Red-Dot scope, firing a 5 round group at the first dot in the second column. The hunting scope would then be reattached to the rifle and a group fired at the dot next to the first group for the comparison. The process would then be repeated with the following respective dots in the same rows. We have used quick release mounts before for weapons like carbines with reflex type optics, since these aren't pinpoint weapons in most instances, and neither were the mounts, these systems worked fine. We had never considered using QD mounts on a precision rifle. Our need for extreme accuracy doesn't leave room for error.
Our test results were excellent. Groups repeatedly impacted in the same location. The average shot-to-shot and group-to-group deviation was nothing more then the standard difference expected. Things like the slight change in cheek weld from group to group and variations in each round fired were about all we saw. Every time we pulled off a scope and remounted it, the impact was the same. The time required to change scopes proved to take less than 5 seconds and is very simple. These mounts proved to us that they work! The only hidden trick to this system is mounting the base and rings.
Most scope bases are easy for the common shooter to mount. A standard base requires nothing more than 4 screws and a little lock tight. The Talbot QD mounting system is slightly more complicated. If you are not mechanically inclined and have no gunsmithing abilities, then you should leave the mounting process to a qualified individual. When you order a base, it comes with full mounting instructions so you can read through them and decide if it's something you want attempt. If not, a competent gunsmith should be able to mount the system for around $50 dollars. Add this to the $180-$190 price tag of the base and $50-$70 for rings, and you have a system that you can feel completely confident in.
If you need to remove your scope for traveling or switching between scopes for different applications, then the Talbot QD Mounts are something for you check into. We spent three days shooting, removing, and shooting again, a rifle mounted with this system. Our zero never changed. With the precision CNC milling and turning machines used on the solid bar stock by Al Talbot, we expect all his bases to be just as good as the one we tested. Now, changing scopes on your precision rifle does not have to include a trip to the range for a rezero. Al Talbot has taken the initiative and built the solution.
Talbot QD Mounts
2210 East Grand Blanc Road
Grand Blanc, Michigan 48439