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shoots100
04-05-2021, 08:47 AM
Finally got my hands on the Impulse Predator in 243.
My initial impression ;
I like it and it's a good start for the first American made straight pull actioned rifle.
Action and barrel finish is even and smoothe.
Accustock is a typical accustock, very nice and easily adjustable.
The bolt on the other hand, is a little rough when cycling, but with some slide glide and kroil applied, it's a lot smoother and should get smoother with use.
I noticed that the bolt is supported and riding on the bolt release, so you need to pull straight back or the friction slow's the bolt down because it's riding on the bolt release.
It's especially noticeable when using it left handed, but when set up for right hand manipulation, it's a lot smoother.
To me, it's due to the fact that there's less pressure being applied on the bolt release(Which is on the left side of the action) with the bolt handle being on the opposite side of the bolt release.
Bolt manipulation is better if you place the bolt position a little foward towards the muzzle. (Pic Attached of that bolt position )
When the bolt handle is facing straight down (In the traditional turn bolt position) you tend to pull it upward's and back, not straight back to unlock and cycle it.
The bolt handle is ok, but it's smoothe, so a knurled bolt handle is on order.
I did the same with my Blaser R8.
I removed the barrelled action from the stock and the stock machining is clean and smoothe, with no noticable gaps between the aluminum bed and stock.
It's a light stock and all the weight is in the barreled action, so like most american made rifles, the rifle is barrel heavy.
I was hoping to elimiate some weight from the stock to make it lighter, but I think the only options to make it lighter and balanced, is to have the barrel fluted or get a thinner profile barrel.
The barrel is fluted on the Big game impulse and I don't know why they didn't offer that with the Predator and Hog hunter models.
Taking some weight off the barrel end would really make this rifle easier to handle and after taking it to the range, I'm going to send it out to have it fluted.
I didn't try to remove the barrel from the reciever, even though I really want to get a look at the barrel extension.
I want to see how accurate it is out of the box and also don't want to take a chance on screwing it up before I get to fire it.
The supplied magazine works flawless, but it's long, noisy and a little loose when locked in.
Being it's metal, when it's partialy empty and/or empty, it's annoyingly loud.
Not what you want in a predator rifle, especially when hunting at night.
I don't like how far the 10rd magazine sticks out from the stock too, so the 5 round Pmags I ordered and am waiting on will be a welcomed addition.
The threaded barrel cap is fitted nicely and the threads are clean.
Two 5/8-24 muzzle brakes threaded on and off without any binding.
The trigger breaks clean at 2 lb's, on both the digital and mechhanical pull gauges.
Thats the out of the box factory set trigger pull weight.
I prefer a 3 lb pull for a field rifle, but if it passes the drop test, I'll keep it at 2 lb's.
Attached +Timed the titanium muzzle brake (Don't want to add more weight to the barel end), cleaned, lubed and assembled the rifle.
Range results will be forthcoming.

SJC

snowgetter1
04-05-2021, 04:53 PM
Thanks for very honest review! Glad someone finally got their hands on one!!!

fireguymike133
04-06-2021, 08:08 AM
I like the idea of an ambidextrous rifle just seems a little to heavy for my tastes right now. Good write up.

Robinhood
04-06-2021, 11:20 PM
Thanks for the review.

shoots100
04-08-2021, 10:38 PM
It's 8 lbs with an unloaded 10rd metal magazine and no optics or rings.
One note, the plastic Pmag AICS compatible magazines don't fit without serious modification.
I made one fit, but filed a little to much off the cartridge retainer lips and now it's only good for loading single rounds. It'll be good for range use.
Metal AICS magazines fit and function, but are very loose.
I'm going to try and see if I can find some type of sand able filler material to make them fit tighter in the mag well.
I stacked up layers of duct tape to make it fit snug and it need's to have just shy of 1/4" material added on each side.
The metal AICS mags have a large recess in the middle area of the magazine body.
Found a whole bunch of 70 grn projos, so I hope it likes at least one of the test loads I loaded for the range session this weekend.

SJC

Caliper
04-09-2021, 10:33 AM
One note, the plastic Pmag AICS compatible magazines don't fit without serious modification.

Ugh, that's disappointing. Hopefully this is just something with early rifles that Savage gets resolved since their website says AICS mags. It sounds like the polymer feed lips are too thick and interfere with the receiver?

shoots100
04-10-2021, 02:00 PM
Ugh, that's disappointing. Hopefully this is just something with early rifles that Savage gets resolved since their website says AICS mags. It sounds like the polymer feed lips are too thick and interfere with the receiver?
Yeah, bummed me out too, as the Pmag's are half the price of the AICS mag's and don't make any noise.
Because it's plastic, it needs to be thicker to make it strong enough for abuse, especially in the feed lip area.
The only way's to make the Pmag's fit without compromising their integrity, is to have the receiver machined to fit them
So, two cons with the predator model so far ;
No Fluted barrel.
Doesn't accommodate the use of Pmag's.

SJC

shoots100
04-11-2021, 04:40 PM
Just got back from shooting the Impulse at a very soggy range.
It was nice weather yesterday when I visited the range and no one was there, but I left the bolt in my gun room, so I had to take out my frustration by unloading a full mag of 50Bmg with my Serbu semi.
So, I got to the range today and it was drizzling and then it started pouring, so I enjoyed the bugs for awhile and then it calmed down enough to put the chrono and target out.
As per usual with most Savages, it's a very accurate rifle with my tested reloads.
45, 46 and 46.5 gr of H4350.
5 rounds of 70 gr Barnes HPBT match and 3 rounds of 70 gr Nosler Ballistic tips with the 46 + 46.5 loads.
45 gr was slow(3,150 fps), but it got me centered and as per usual, the 46.5 gr load(3,325 avg) put them into small clusters, even with the wind and rain.
I'm going to push it a little faster, as there was no case pressure signs or extraction issues.
1" dia orange stickers.
It's a keeper.

SJC

Orezona
04-17-2021, 12:37 PM
Very nice. Thank you for sharing your experience.

shoots100
04-26-2021, 07:00 PM
Got to do some nuisance hunting with my Predator last weekend.
This lone female was harassing some cow and calves early Sat Am.
Made a long/quick stalk while it was busy and was able to get a shot before it winded me.
Shot placement wasn't the best, but the 70 grn NBT did the job.
I think I'm going to try some heavier bullets in the future.
5rd AICS magazines make no noise and work perfectly.
SJC

https://youtu.be/Zcp7zjQ3-Zw

snowgetter1
04-27-2021, 01:45 AM
Niiicccceeee!

DAN4
05-01-2021, 05:23 AM
...
5rd AICS magazines make no noise and work perfectly...

Hello, which 5 charger are you using?

shoots100
05-02-2021, 03:41 PM
Hello, which 5 charger are you using?
The AICS or Accurate mag AICS pattern 7.62 short action magazines work.

E6Chevron
07-09-2021, 11:53 PM
Finally got my hands on the Impulse Predator in 243.
My initial impression ;
I like it and it's a good start for the first American made straight pull actioned rifle.
Action and barrel finish is even and smoothe.
Accustock is a typical accustock, very nice and easily adjustable.
The bolt on the other hand, is a little rough when cycling, but with some slide glide and kroil applied, it's a lot smoother and should get smoother with use.
I noticed that the bolt is supported and riding on the bolt release, so you need to pull straight back or the friction slow's the bolt down because it's riding on the bolt release.
It's especially noticeable when using it left handed, but when set up for right hand manipulation, it's a lot smoother.
To me, it's due to the fact that there's less pressure being applied on the bolt release(Which is on the left side of the action) with the bolt handle being on the opposite side of the bolt release.
Bolt manipulation is better if you place the bolt position a little foward towards the muzzle. (Pic Attached of that bolt position )
When the bolt handle is facing straight down (In the traditional turn bolt position) you tend to pull it upward's and back, not straight back to unlock and cycle it.
The bolt handle is ok, but it's smoothe, so a knurled bolt handle is on order.
I did the same with my Blaser R8.
I removed the barrelled action from the stock and the stock machining is clean and smoothe, with no noticable gaps between the aluminum bed and stock.
It's a light stock and all the weight is in the barreled action, so like most american made rifles, the rifle is barrel heavy.
I was hoping to elimiate some weight from the stock to make it lighter, but I think the only options to make it lighter and balanced, is to have the barrel fluted or get a thinner profile barrel.
The barrel is fluted on the Big game impulse and I don't know why they didn't offer that with the Predator and Hog hunter models.
Taking some weight off the barrel end would really make this rifle easier to handle and after taking it to the range, I'm going to send it out to have it fluted.
I didn't try to remove the barrel from the reciever, even though I really want to get a look at the barrel extension.
I want to see how accurate it is out of the box and also don't want to take a chance on screwing it up before I get to fire it.
The supplied magazine works flawless, but it's long, noisy and a little loose when locked in.
Being it's metal, when it's partialy empty and/or empty, it's annoyingly loud.
Not what you want in a predator rifle, especially when hunting at night.
I don't like how far the 10rd magazine sticks out from the stock too, so the 5 round Pmags I ordered and am waiting on will be a welcomed addition.
The threaded barrel cap is fitted nicely and the threads are clean.
Two 5/8-24 muzzle brakes threaded on and off without any binding.
The trigger breaks clean at 2 lb's, on both the digital and mechhanical pull gauges.
Thats the out of the box factory set trigger pull weight.
I prefer a 3 lb pull for a field rifle, but if it passes the drop test, I'll keep it at 2 lb's.
Attached +Timed the titanium muzzle brake (Don't want to add more weight to the barel end), cleaned, lubed and assembled the rifle.
Range results will be forthcoming.

SJC

About the muzzle brake...

Where did you get it from?

Were you trying to reduce recoil, muzzle flash, what?

TIA

99 K 30-30
07-10-2021, 01:54 AM
Now you just need to rent a 243 AI reamer to fix all the things that are wrong with the 243 Win. (brass flow, case stretch. the dreaded donut etc.)

Sounds like we may have a "poor man's Blaser".

My TAC2 300 winny with the scope that cost 2X the rifle.

"Push the button and Swarovski does the rest"

https://i.imgur.com/31xT5Zc.jpg

GaCop
07-10-2021, 07:03 AM
Thanks for a great report.

shoots100
07-17-2021, 01:00 AM
For a lot of decades, my .243 rifles have gotten the job done.
Not one animal ever told me it would have rather been shot by a 243 AI, so I'll stick with the standard 243 until they start to complain.
I compete with a Tac2 308, hunt with an R8 300WSM and predator hunt an Impulse Predator 243, topped with a Pulsar XP38 thermion scope, that costs almost 4x the Impulse rifle.
The Impulse is a great rifle, but it'll never be a Blaser.
It does however have the same straight pull action mechanics as a Blaser and is American made, so it'll be staying in the stable for a long time to come.
Just waiting for it to come back from the smith that's fluting the barrel to make it a little more svelte.
The barrel assy weighs in at almost 3lbs on the dot.
I don't know how much weight is going to be trimmed with the fluting, but anything will help.
The muzzle brake is titanium and very lightweight.
I use brakes on rifles for night shooting, as the noise isn't totally directed at the animal + less recoil has sometimes enabled me to get a second shot sometimes.
I'd would prefer using a suppressor, but being I live in a prison state, only criminals can have suppressors.
SJC

Robinhood
07-17-2021, 11:28 PM
For a lot of decades, my .243 rifles have gotten the job done.
Not one animal ever told me it would have rather been shot by a 243 AI, so I'll stick with the standard 243 until they start to complain.


For some reason this makes me laugh.

AbitNutz
07-23-2021, 05:05 PM
I just hope the Impulse isn't going to be an orphan and spreads like the covid-19 of firearms. I want to be able to buy Impulse chassis, triggers, barrels, underwear. I want to be able to buy the Impulse action in cricket size 17 Mach IV to Tyrannosaur 460 Weatherby length. I've always liked the straight pull designs but this one has so many features at non-ridiculous prices.