I would say with a good shooter the gun is competitive right out the box, heck I would say all most all Savages are competitive right out the box. When I started shooting 600 IBS benchrest I shot a box stock 112BT in 243, and was competitive, beating out high dollar custom rigs, and opened a few eyes. Now I would say that the gun was hard to shoot because it was, the stock would torque, and do to the light weight it was hard to get it back into battery, and see a shot hit a sighter, but it worked. The 12 bechrest has a much better set up than what I started with, and there are many foaks compeating with them as they are right out the box, but a little tweeking sure does help.
To start, the rifle is unballanced with it overly long 30 inch barrel. Some have cut the barrels back with great sucess. The gun is far from 17lbs weight so cutting pockets in the back of the stock to add lead to pick up weight would be a good idea, this would also help balance out the rifle.Originally Posted by Ridgetop
Dont expect the target accu-trigger to go down to 6 oz, for one they will malfunction at anything under 1 lbs, when closing the bolt, second I have never seen one that would go that low. Trust me you will want to throw the rifle, when your in a favorable condition, and the trigger locks up, because you closed the bolt too had for its liking, and you have to recock the gun, (Sometime five or six times.) before you can get a shot off, or by the time you can get the shot off the condition changes, and all you can say is "That dang trigger!" IMO to be competitive the trigger needs replaced with an good aftermarket trigger.
The barrel will shoot fine, but remember it is no match grade high end thing. Many believe that Savage has a "Special Match" barrel, or that they use an aftermarket barrel on the high end guns, and the truth is they don't. It is the same mass produced item found on any Savage rifle. It shoots as good as any Savage barrel, and no better. Some would say that changing the barrel would shrink groups, and I would have to agree. Savage does the barrels in a high speed process, shooting out barrels at lighting speeds. It is not uncommon to find one with a crocked chamber, but it seems to have little affect on it. Some complain about the chatter marks in the barrels from pulling the button through, but again they still shoot well. Most aftermark guns have high dollar cut rifled barrels, and unless your doiing the same it is hard to compete with that.
You have to remember we are talking about a mass produced rifle. You also have to remember over 95% of Savage sales are hunting rifles, the small nitch market that they pick up with these target rifles, is not enough for them to change there process. Now that I have picked out the faults of the Savage rifle, I will say a Remington is no better. A Remington would need just as much if not more work to be as competitive as a Savage. The issue with the bolt lift, yes it is hard, that is just how it is. It needs as much if not less work than a Remington does, remember these are factory mass produced rifle mostly built for a hunting market.Originally Posted by Ridgetop
The bolt lift dont need changed to be competitive, but it makes staying competitive easier. The bolt lift will move the gun in the bags, and move things around keeping on target a bit harder. The bolt lift fix is more of a confront feature than anything. I dont understand why people say $125.00 for a SSS Time and True job is "a costly process" when you just spent over a grand for the rifle. You still have less in it than you would a Bat, Panda, or a Remington. Check out prices to have a Remington "Blue Printed" and see if $125 is costly. Well someone could say I spent over $1000.00 the rifle should be perfect, all I got to say to that is you want a Bat than buy a Bat, remember the action alone is over $1200.00, if Savage was to do special work to this rifle then it would then also raise the price more. Basicly Savage came out with this rifle, to pick up a small market of sales, and to please a few customers, they realize that they gun could be improved, but it is good enough as it is, if the consumer whats to improve it they can.