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Thread: Savage F/TR or Palma rifle setup

  1. #1

    Savage F/TR or Palma rifle setup

    I am interested in shooting in the F/TR class.

    I like the Savage Palma rifle's stock setup better than the F/TR's but like the 12 Twist and heavier barrel on the F/TR. Wish either had a longer forearm for my bipod to be placed a bit further out and closer to the muzzle.

    What do you all suggest? or should I just build the rifle, buy the action and a stock I like better and perhaps a Criterion barrel?

  2. #2
    Paid Member jhelmuth's Avatar
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    Maybe just me, but I'm having a hard time answering your question(s) as they areso braod and you gave so little description of your goals and left out any kind of constraints (like costs, etc.).

    So here is my best shot (just trying to help).

    Don't waste your time with a stock rifle that compromises your needs. Build what you want/need and have no regrets...

    I personally like the Criterion barrels,so that seems a good choice on that particular part. I'd mate it to a Target Action and I think the HS Precision stocks are very nice for F/TR and you have 2 choices of styles. I'm not personally familar with McMillan - but they also seem to get good reviews too.

    You said nothing about a scope of bipod (both very important in my opinion), so do budget for a quality scope that meets your criteria, and I'd consider a nice 3rd gen Sinclair bipod (the nice adjustable one).

    Good luck, and safe shooting!
    .22LR * 6.5x47 Lapua * .223 Rem * .308 Win * Large Cojones!
    "I can prove anything by statistics except the truth."

  3. #3
    jhelmuth, I didn't want any confusion.

    What I was trying to say was that I am interested in shooting in the F/TR class. I an interested in the Savage F/TR rifle and also interested in the Savage Palma rifle. I like the Palma stock because it has all the adjustments, such as the adjustable butt pad and cheekpiece. But it has a lighter contour barrel and a 1-13 twist, where as the F/TR model has a 1-12 twist and a heavier contour barrel that might be more accurate over a long string of shots because of it's size. I read that "Team Savage" are shooting stock Savage F/TR model rifles.

    IMO, I believe a longer forearm might be beneficial to a target rifle that is shot off a rest, either a bipod type rest or an adjustable such as used by the F Open class or regular benchresh shooters. If that is true I am surprised that "Team Savage" and other shooters haven't gotten with Savage's engineers or whoever and asked for a longer stock. Perhaps it's a making weight issue?

    I already have a Sightron SIII 8-32x56, and a Sinclair bipod on a rifle, but I am looking at the Savage rifles since I hear how accurate they are from the factory, making me wonder if an aftermarket barrel, and/or buying an action and a stock was really worth the extra dollars.

  4. #4
    Administrator Admin's Avatar
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    Solution: Buy both, swap the stocks, then resell the one you don't want.
    Jim B. - Site Administrator
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  5. #5
    Administrator Admin's Avatar
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    Ok, a little more serious answer.....

    1. If I were seriously looking to get into long-range competition shooting the absolute last cartridge I would consider would be the .308 Win. Why? Because it has the trajectory of a mortar shell. Why take off right out of the gate with a major handicap?

    2. The forends really aren't any shorter on the Palma or FT/R than any other rifle, they just look short because Savage puts a ridiculously long 30" barrel on these models.

    3. If it were me, I would just buy the Model 12 Long Range Precision in .260 Rem. to start out with. It has a very nice HS Precision stock, the 260's trajectory is much, much flatter than the .308's, and the 6.5mm bullets won't drift nearly as much. The 6.5 Creedmore might be another or even better option - I really don't know as I've never really looked at it closely.

    Straight truth: Buy any one of them, develop a good consistent load, go shoot matches for a season to learn the game and establish an accuracy/consistency baseline, then at the end of the season evaluate what you need to change/upgrade before next years season starts. You can't make things better when you don't even know where you're starting at.
    Jim B. - Site Administrator
    I run a forum - someone please shoot me and put me out of my misery already

  6. #6
    F/TR class is restricted to a 308 Win or the 223 Rem, but I do understand where your coming from.

    I like the old 12 BVSS and have had a couple. I actually use a BVSS stock on my 6 BR build I put together several years back. Thought about the custom shop, but I am afraid they may be more expensive than I am willing to do.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by DanS View Post
    What I was trying to say was that I am interested in shooting in the F/TR class. I an interested in the Savage F/TR rifle and also interested in the Savage Palma rifle. I like the Palma stock because it has all the adjustments, such as the adjustable butt pad and cheekpiece.
    The adjustable hardware is not as important in F/TR as it is in Palma competition. Most of the custom F/TR rigs out there do sport some amount of adjustable hardware, true, but given the difference in hold between the two disciplines the function / use is somewhat different. Adjustable cheek piece - very necessary, for me. Adjustable LOP... spacers or extra thick recoil pad does the trick for me, because it pretty much stays there once I have it set. For position (sling) shooting such as Palma, adjustable buttplates with cant and offset features become more useful.

    But it has a lighter contour barrel and a 1-13 twist, where as the F/TR model has a 1-12 twist and a heavier contour barrel that might be more accurate over a long string of shots because of it's size.
    Less of an issue than you might think. 20, even 30 shots is not really that many in the overall scheme of things. Either way, you will want a mirage band because either barrel will be *hot* by the end of a string of fire, enough so to cause mirage that can distort the image quality of a high-magnification scope.

    The 13 twist was selected more because it was considered the defacto standard for 155gn bullets commonly in use at the time the rifle was conceived, such as the 'old' Sierra 155 Match King, p/n 2155. As luck would have it... within a year or two of the rifle's introduction, Berger and Sierra both started making bullets with updated designs that while nominally the same weight, are much longer - and benefit from a faster twist. I'm not saying that a 13 twist *won't* stabilize the newer/longer bullets, or even somewhat heavier ones... but there isn't much of a reason to go with something slower than 1-12" any more. The WTC95 Palma chamber used in these barrels has a relatively short throat - in keeping with the short bearing surface on most 155gn bullets. You *can* use heavier bullets... but an awful lot of bullet is going to be stuffed down in the case, possibly below the shoulder-neck junction (less than ideal).

    In my mind, the 'ideal' configuration would be something like on the 12 Benchrest - its more or less what you see listed as a 'heavy Palma' or '1000yd Heavy Varmint' contour, tapering to ~.900 @ the muzzle as opposed to the ~1.000" of the F/TR barrel or the ~.812 (before the 0.750" tenon) of the (medium) Palma barrel. The current configuration of the 12 BR barrel is 29" long... no idea where they came up with that number, but it doesn't realistically give up enough MV to lose any sleep over. Gaining ~3/4 lb of weight margin to play with does help out though.

    I read that "Team Savage" are shooting stock Savage F/TR model rifles.
    'Stock' in that they come to us as factory rifles in the box same as you would buy at the local gun store. Some small amount of individual customization does occur, such as aftermarket bolt handles, cheek pieces, bedding, etc. One person (Darrel Buell, also captain of the US F/TR team) has shot an entirely stock rifle for the last five years.

    IMO, I believe a longer forearm might be beneficial to a target rifle that is shot off a rest, either a bipod type rest or an adjustable such as used by the F Open class or regular benchresh shooters. If that is true I am surprised that "Team Savage" and other shooters haven't gotten with Savage's engineers or whoever and asked for a longer stock. Perhaps it's a making weight issue?
    Making weight is a major concern, and what we 'want' has to be balanced against what they can realistically sell in any useful quantity.

    I already have a Sightron SIII 8-32x56, and a Sinclair bipod on a rifle, but I am looking at the Savage rifles since I hear how accurate they are from the factory, making me wonder if an aftermarket barrel, and/or buying an action and a stock was really worth the extra dollars.
    In theory you should be able to order a semi-custom configuration, such as a Palma rifle (action & stock) with a BR barrel (29", 1-12 tw, same chamber - Obermeyer - as the 12 F/TR) from the factory. The cost is going to go up... both because you're not ordering through a wholesaler, and because of the custom nature of the order. How much, I have no idea. Depending on how 'custom' you want to go, a Target Action, pre-threaded & chambered barrel, and an aftermarket stock may be cheaper/faster. Adjustable stocks get expensive *very* quickly, though - and thats before finish work or bedding.

  8. #8
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    i would avoid the palma rifle unless u plan on shooting palma comps. a buddy of mine has one, and the short throat chamber is a severe drawback. his rifle wont even chamber federal gold medal match. load development isnt going well, weve been unable to get consistent sub moa groups. i attribute this however to the fact that he hasnt shot the few bullets its designed for(the various 155s) yet.

    im not familiar w the BR or FTRs, but my sons bone stock mcmillian 10FP and my mcgowen barreled mutt shoot 1/2 MOA all day any day w both 175 smks and scenars. id recomend doin some research and building what u want or buyin one of the other off the shelf rifles that has the features u want

    gl!

  9. #9
    Wow, memilanuk, and everyone else
    Thanks for all that info and your advice. I am just going to be a part time comp shooter. I don't have too many vacation days to take off work. But being able to ring a 10-12 in gong the other day at 600 was a rush, and I am looking forward to seeing what I can do with some wind flags and some experience.

  10. #10
    OK, I got to thinking about this a bit more. If you had your way, gave you the green light for a factory change or changes, what would you change on the F/TR set-up?

  11. #11
    For the 12 F/TR... should be good to go as is from the factory. The stock 1-12" tw barrel w/ Obermeyer chamber should handle 155s on up to at least 185s, possibly heavier though I haven't tried it myself (yet) with 200+gn pills. Personally I would get an aftermarket saddle cheekpiece from Karsten - you can install it yourself in about 15-20 minutes with a cordless drill. Easy-peasy. Other than that... scope rail from Farrell or EGW, rings, bipod, scope, etc. The usual

    Good luck,

    Monte

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