The Interview: Chris Barrett, Part I
By Miles Vining
Since the company’s inception in the 1980s, Barrett Firearms has made leaps and bounds from the former garage that Ronnie Barrett used to make the first M82 anti material rifles. Today the company is expanding into the AR market, machine guns, and precision rifles with their MRAD design. Taking that momentum into the 21st Century is Christopher Barrett, the current president of the company. Chris was kind enough to sit down with SAR as we interviewed him about his history with the company, and where he wants the company to go in the near future.
SAR: Were you involved with Barrett Firearms from the beginning?
Chris: My earliest memories were of my dad shooting, and his firearms interests. He had machine guns in the 1980s, was a big time hobbyist, always shooting in sub-gun matches. He just had the coolest things in the world to a little boy. I’ve always been a part of the culture of this industry. I was around four years old when dad really came out with the company in 1982. I was shooting at a very young age, which a lot of people might not agree with these days, but it came naturally to our family. It helped make me the shooter I am today, and also helps with the designing aspect. I mean, people who actually shoot a lot, can identify what works and what doesn’t, and we put that into our designs. You could call it the Barrett “DNA” of the company, a lot of us are shooters, and we use the products we make. As an example, we don’t make submachine guns, but we still learn things from them that we can put into our other designs. If you are always in tune with that sort of thing, it makes you a good designer.
SAR: How did the company develop, throughout its history?
CHRIS: Well we started with the garage years, we lived in two different houses, with two different garages that dad was putting the rifles together in. The first house was in downtown Murfreesboro, and it was...
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