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Thread: I think I'll keep it

  1. #1

    Thumbs up I think I'll keep it

    I finally got a 24 hour break in the weekend weather and got to shoot my new rifles. I treated myself to a retirement present of three rifles. I know I probably should have gotten one really great rifle with a blueprinted action, premium barrel, and McMillan stock but, I went utilitarian. Even though I'm a lefty I bought a Stevens in 223 as a truck gun. I had to learn on a right handed bolt and I can still crank out 3 shots in a reasonable time even when the handle's on the wrong side for me. I also picked up a LH Savage in 17 HMR just because the old neighborhood by the farm is now inhabited by city folk who associate gun fire with trouble not varmint reduction. I need something a little quieter for woodchucks.

    But, the grand prize of this package of treats is a .338 WM Weather Warrior in LH. While the stock leaves something to be desired when you've been shooting McMillan and HS Precisions it's nothing that can't be improved with some foam and Devcon steel until I can afford a permanent remedy. No matter what some think of Savages and their barrel nuts the things flat out shoot. For some reason A-Bolts don't appeal to me and they are the only other practical (for my budget) option in a LH 338 WM.

    After bore sighting, (I do mean looking down the bore to the target and making adjustments from there.) and getting reasonbly centered, all three rifles showed great accuracy and no copper fouling after being cleaned with Shooter's Choice copper remover and Hoppes #9 during the break-in shots. Savage must be keeping their chamber reamers very sharp. (The 30-06 Savage I got last year showed copper fouling until after the 12th shot.)

    The Stevens 223 had all three shots from the first three shot group after centering touching. This was with Remington UMC 55 gr fmj's. (Everybody in the area was out of 223 brass and I had to buy some starter ammo.) I quit while I was ahead having picked up about 130 pieces of abandoned and homeless 223 brass while waiting for guys to set their targets.

    The Savage 17 HMR definitely likes CCI 17 gr. TNT's. I was able to shoot one ragged hole into the target with 5 shots at 50 yards.

    I'll let the picture speak for the 338 WM. Those were the first 5 shots. The two on the left were the first two and I calculated the 25 yard results into scope adjustments for 100. I would have preferred to be a little higher, but I think I got the horizontal adjustment pretty good. The load was a midrange charge of 4064 and Hornady 200 gr SP's, Winchester brass, and WLR primers. I didn't weigh any of the charges after I set my powder measure, something I do when working with hot loads. I think that this rifle show lots of potiential for accuracy when I get my loads tweaked. Maybe someday I'll be able to get a 375 something or other with a premium barrel and McMillan stock. Until then I'll have some fun with this baby.

    First5Shot338WM.jpg

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Missoula, MT
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    448

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    Congratulations on the purchase; you deserve it. And, nice shooting. Enjoy. J.

  3. #3

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    Cool!!! and very good shooting, that is great. Don't you just love it when things come together.
    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
    THE MIND OF A SCHOLAR
    THE HEART OF A CHILD
    THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

  4. #4

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    Flyer55; Your right you could have pooled your money into one custom gun however you summed up your intent with one word "utilitarian".

    I'd be willing to bet that your box stock Savages will shoot right with most custom jobs and they will serve just as long in the reliability department. Keep in mind that were talking a custom gun that you would have invested the same amount of money into as you have in your 3 Savages not one of those "the sky is the limit" jobs.

    My son who when in jr high lived to squirrel hunt. He has been off playing college football for four years and the number one thing he says he missed was squirrel hunting. He called yesterday to say that he had accepted a job in his old stomping grounds. The real purpose of the call was to have dear old dad pick him up a new squirrel gun in 17hmr. The CZ's are nice, the Marlins are certainly functional, I personally shoot a Ruger 77/17, yet when it comes right down to it I wanted the best bang for the buck so I got him a new Savage 913 SS with the accutrigger! Its gonna wear a Nikon 3x9 silver Monarch scope. I haven't put it together yet but experience tells me that it will out shoot the others mentioned with the only question being the CZ.

    My truck gun is as yours a Stevens 200 in 223. I didn't break it in nor have I cleaned it and yet it shoots half inch groups with factory fodder. That little gun makes me shake my head and smile at the same time. How in the heck can a center fire rifle that is bought for less money than a 22 rimfire perform like that. I mentioned this in an earlier thread but it fits again...I have a Remington 40xb in 222 that I paid over a grand for several years ago and it gets shown up by the Stevens.

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    soldotna
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    62

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    Congrads on your retirement! Savage may not be the best looking, but as your results show, they are shooters. Enjoy your retirement and your new rifles.

  6. #6

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    Thanks,

    I was just amazed by the out of box accuracy. I bought a box of Hornady, Federal, and CCI ammo to see which the 17 HMR would like. I tried the CCI's first and couldn't believe I was shooting a rimfire. With the price of beans being what they are, it'll probably pay for itself in a couple of weeks of chuck reduction. Now, I just have to find a load with varmint bullets that shoots as good as the fmj's. I've a decent supply of V-max and BT's, H322, Benchmark, and Xterminator to start with. Now comes the fun part.


    I already have test loads in 225, and 250 grain made up for the 383 WM. In three weeks I'll have plenty of time to get them sorted out and see how they do with neck sized cases. I do hope this plan keeps coming together.

  7. #7

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    Flyer55, elmerkeithclone is so right about the Savage. I for one have had many custom rifles built but here is a target of my out of the box Savage Stainless Weather Warrior in 7mmSTW that I have posted before which none of my customs has ever topped.


    A GUN WRITER NEEDS:
    THE MIND OF A SCHOLAR
    THE HEART OF A CHILD
    THE HIDE OF A RHINOCEROS

  8. #8

    Default

    That was a nice piece of shooting.

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