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Thread: The Bottom Line on Savage 116 Magnums

  1. #1

    Default The Bottom Line on Savage 116 Magnums

    I was at the LGS this weekend and a certain rifle caught my eye. It's the savage Alaskan brush hunter in 338 win. Finally a shorter barreled 338 with iron sights and stainless finish.
    What is the bottom line on newer savages in magnum caliber? I'm not interested in any other models but the 116 nor do I care how ugly it is. Will it hold up to a honey badger Alaskan hunter on a moose hunt where rain, mud, snow, wind and a few good drops on rock are enevitable.
    i have never personally seen one fail but recall reading other posts here where guys question their durability or have had repairs done. A better question would be has anyone ever broke a 116 savage and if so what broke? Just from handling the Alaskan brush hunter it's obvious the stock could be improved upon.
    I'm interested in your opinions and experiences.

  2. #2

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    I take it by the lack of responses there are not a lot of you who have used and abused the 116 savage magnums.
    How about with ANY of the 116's in ANY caliber?

    More observations on the Brush Hunter so far:
    -the advertised barrel length is 20". I measured one and it's more like 19"
    -The iron sights seem adequate however I would probably replace the rear to a flip up style. Maybe change the front blade to a tritium site
    -Stock seems cheap. I'd probably krylon it and shoot until it breaks then put on an HS precision or similar
    -Accutrigger seems nice. I also like the 3 position safety. I'm curious on the materials used for the trigger assembly. I wonder if their stainless or coated??
    -Bolt handle is over sized which I like. Looks to be easy to operate with gloves.

    The best part is that it's the ugliest rifle I have ever seen so I wont feel bad when I trash it. I'm just concerned about it's reliablilty. The price seems right as well.

  3. #3
    Member .338-06's Avatar
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    I don't have a 116, but I do have one of their older Predator models in .223. Love the Accutrigger and the oversized bolt handle on mine. It's all camo-ed up which hides the ugly.

    Shoots good too.
    I may be slow, but I get where I'm going!

  4. #4

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    I don't have any of the Savage 116 models, but I do have others. I own model#s 111, 10, 64, 93, not to mention I own a Savage model 30 12 gauge shotgun. The model 10 has the accutrigger in .243 and it will shoot bullets in the same hole all day long, if you're not careful. I like em all!

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    I have a 116 in 338wm that is over 10 years old. It is the original AK series non accutrigger model. The only issue I had was with the stock. After the first 20 rounds through it all the screws came loose in it. I changed out the stock with a Bell and Carlson one, had it bedded and had the trigger worked. It has been drug up mountains, through the willows, rained on and splashed with salt water and has never given me a problem but you do have to take care of them though, as you should any other rifle. There are no coated parts in the trigger, it's all stainless. As for the new brush hunter, I can't say. The sights on the new rifle seem lacking and appear very fragile. As for the stock I can say Savage has made several improvements from the earlier models.

    Now as for being ugly...... I think my Ruger Hawkeye Alaskan takes the prize! At least the Savage has a little luster on the stainless.


    Good luck!
    John
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    Quote Originally Posted by senecanation View Post
    I was at the LGS this weekend and a certain rifle caught my eye. It's the savage Alaskan brush hunter in 338 win. Finally a shorter barreled 338 with iron sights and stainless finish.
    What is the bottom line on newer savages in magnum caliber? I'm not interested in any other models but the 116 nor do I care how ugly it is. Will it hold up to a honey badger Alaskan hunter on a moose hunt where rain, mud, snow, wind and a few good drops on rock are enevitable.
    i have never personally seen one fail but recall reading other posts here where guys question their durability or have had repairs done. A better question would be has anyone ever broke a 116 savage and if so what broke? Just from handling the Alaskan brush hunter it's obvious the stock could be improved upon.
    I'm interested in your opinions and experiences.
    That thar gun IS catchy to the eye, AND the short barrel is part of it BUT, it has 1 flaw that makes it totally unacceptable.

    The blame barrel is only 18 inches. You will learn to hate it. 22, 21, or even 20 would make a world of difference.

    Do not fall for Savage's Marketing. Them Doity Wats.

    Smitty of the North


    Smitth of the Northm
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  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    That thar gun IS catchy to the eye, AND the short barrel is part of it BUT, it has 1 flaw that makes it totally unacceptable.

    The blame barrel is only 18 inches. You will learn to hate it. 22, 21, or even 20 would make a world of difference.

    Do not fall for Savage's Marketing. Them Doity Wats.

    Smitty of the North


    Smitth of the Northm
    The wonder if the increased muzzle blast in the shorter barrel can be mitigated by faster burning powder selections?
    I assume that's what you mean by I'll learn to hate the 18" barrel?

    The only other production 338 with a short tube is the sako Kodiak AFAIK. it would be nice if someone else offered a 20-22" 338 Winnie with iron sights. Is a 26 really necessary? I guess the next best thing would be the hawkeye or xcr 2. They come with 24's.

  9. #9
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Short barrels on rifles have never bothered me.The muzzle blast is still farther away than my pistols
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    Short barrels on rifles have never bothered me.The muzzle blast is still farther away than my pistols
    Not mine. Not always.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

  11. #11
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    Hmm, Looks like the HOGHUNTER has a 20" barrel.

    In 223, 308, and 338 WM.

    http://savagearms.com/firearms/model/11HOGHUNTER

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

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    I like Savage guns a lot, but I would not carry one with an Accutrigger for big critters. Lateral movement when pulling the trigger can cause absolutely nothing to happen. I have seen it done and done it myself when wearing gloves while rabbit hunting with my Savage 22. It is just the way that Accutrigger works.

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    I helped my brother fix up his 116 (I think it was, may have been the 111) in 30-06. The screws all came loose on the scope and stock. He took it out of the safe for an elk hunt and it shot really bad. The detachable magazine would pop out each shot, making it a one shot scatter gun. I reinstalled the scope rings and scope, got new screws from savage (they sent them for free) and made a very slight adjustment to the magazine. It works perfect now. We worked up a 168g TTSX load that shoots at 1 moa all day. The non accustock was really hard on the shoulder. It hurt worse than the factory Rem 700 in 300 win. He put a new recoil pad on it and problem solved there. About the only thing he needs now is a trigger job, but he does not plan to shoot very long distances (200 yards is a long ways). He probably will not own another hunting rifle in his life and will shoot everything with that. Except when he comes up here of course. He totes my 375 Ruger around in case there is a big fuzzy. I on the other hand will always have plenty of hunting rifles so he can pick the ones he likes and not worry about TSA and bringing his gun up here.

  14. #14
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    Dirty Bastages.......5 years ago I had to MAKE one like this.....a lefty 116 weather warrior.

    Bought the gun, sent directly to smith, cut and crown with opens installed, then put warne quick release rings and a 1.75x5 Burris on it. Took a while (lived in the bush) but cannot say enough about the carryability, accuracy, ruggedness and usefullness of this kind of combo. I also put a limbsaver pad on it and filled the stock with spray foam which helps it not sound like a plastic stock.

    Never had an issue with accutrigger, and really like it's performance. Have shot stuff in all kinds of nasty weather, cold, wet and dirty and no malfunctions or hiccups. Shoots fine with gloves on.

    It has taken three moose, a caribou, and two blacktails. Shoots as well as i can and no malfunctions whatsoever. It carries great in the brush and up SE mountains, you will never notice increased muzzle blast (it's a 338....they are all loud). Didn't notice any issues with factory ammo, but a buddy is now loading faster powder for me just because it can't hurt. 250 Partitions and Grand Slams have both flown great through it and knock the snot out of whatever I have hit. Have received much gun envy from buddies when out in the sticks as far as weight, ease of carry, and quick shooting.

    Although it is stainless, it does not appreciate a five day soaker.....still need to maintain as expected.

  15. #15
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    Also if you want a 20" barrel you can call savage and custom order your gun for maybe $50 more than the original cost. They are totally willing to make a gun to your specs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alaskankid13 View Post
    Also if you want a 20" barrel you can call savage and custom order your gun for maybe $50 more than the original cost. They are totally willing to make a gun to your specs.
    Reely? That's good to know.


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    The wife shoots a 116, stainless, composite stock in 338 WM with the muzzle brake. I do not care for the feel of this weapon BUT she does. The stock has been shortened to fit her and it has a nice 3x9 scope on it. The dog gone thing shoots very well! She normally shoots 5 rounds a year, 3 to check POI, 1 for her moose and 1 for her caribou. Currently she is working on some 200gr Barnes, that I have loaded. But since I can not find that bullet any more, need to work up a different load.
    The Savage line is not for everyone but they shoot well and can be had for the right price.

  18. #18

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    I've never heard of problems with the Savage 116....the Accutrigger is a different story.

    I love Savage and one of the few that don't think they are ugly. I had a malfunction with the trigger on my Savage. My Accutrigger started locking up with any lateral movement then progressed to not working at all. I replaced it with a Rifle BasiX trigger and have had no issues with the new trigger.

    Accutriggers are awesome when they work and they usually work. When they're broke, they're broke. My recreational enjoyment, and certainly my safety, is worth a replacement trigger right off the bat. How often this trigger malfunction happens, I don't know. I certainly wouldn't let this steer me away from a Savage rifle of any flavor.

    Quote Originally Posted by nbh40 View Post
    I like Savage guns a lot, but I would not carry one with an Accutrigger for big critters. Lateral movement when pulling the trigger can cause absolutely nothing to happen. I have seen it done and done it myself when wearing gloves while rabbit hunting with my Savage 22. It is just the way that Accutrigger works.
    MyTime

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    Quote Originally Posted by MyTime View Post
    I've never heard of problems with the Savage 116....the Accutrigger is a different story.

    I love Savage and one of the few that don't think they are ugly. I had a malfunction with the trigger on my Savage. My Accutrigger started locking up with any lateral movement then progressed to not working at all. I replaced it with a Rifle BasiX trigger and have had no issues with the new trigger.

    Accutriggers are awesome when they work and they usually work. When they're broke, they're broke. My recreational enjoyment, and certainly my safety, is worth a replacement trigger right off the bat. How often this trigger malfunction happens, I don't know. I certainly wouldn't let this steer me away from a Savage rifle of any flavor.
    Will Savage do anything about it?

    Do they have a FIX?

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

  20. #20

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    Smitty,

    Actually I don't know. I imagine they would. In my mind I was thinking that if it broke once then why give try it again. The Rifle BasiX trigger works well so all turned out well in the long run.
    MyTime

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