I have a pre AccuTrigger stainless Savage 116 in 30-06, that I'm thinking about re-barreling to 35 Whelen. Why? Because I can do it myself on the Savage, for fun and to learn. Also I've awakened to the possibilities of the 35 Whelen, and think a 225 AccuBond at some 2800 fps would be pretty mighty out to 400 yards. Unless I'm missing something, where has this round been all my life?
But, are the utilitarian ugly Savage guns reliable in tough field conditions? Several years back I took a 116 Savage 338 up North for Muskox and Caribou and the Savage worked flawlessly. But was I just lucky?
I know Savage guns are known for good accuracy. I also know the trigger pull is kind of poor. With that said, I've yet to warm up to the AccuTrigger. I just do not like them. However there is an aftermarket trigger available.
But what about the firing pin and spring? Is the stock spring good enough? I believe there are aftermarket stronger springs for the Savage.
I would end up with a Stainless 35 Whelen with a Match Grade barrel for a pretty low price! I could change the trigger and even have it stocked in an MPI. Would I end up with a reliable rifle?