Decisons....Decisons...

General discussions regarding topics that aren't covered in one of the other sub-forums. NO DISCUSSION OF POLITICS!

Moderators: ZS Global Moderators, ZS Postal Match Officers

Post Reply
User avatar
mantis
* * * * *
Posts: 3236
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2007 9:56 pm
Location: Brantford, Ontario

Decisons....Decisons...

Post by mantis » Fri May 08, 2015 7:16 pm

So I find myself with an extra $500 burning a hole in my pocket and I have decided to buy another firearm. I want to add another centrefire bolt action to my collection. I am debating between three different ones:

1) A Savage Axis XP Camo chambered in .308 - I have two semi-auto .308 Norinco M14s - a standard length one and a short barrel SOCOM style one. I do have a stock of over 1,500 rounds of .308 on hand which is a big plus. This would be an excellent big game hunting rifle.

2) A Savage Axis XP Camo chambered in .223 Remington. I have a Ruger Mini-14 but no bolt action .223 rifle. I also have around 1,200 rds on hand on .223 Remington. This would make an excellent varmint rifle.

3) Mosin Nagant 91/30 - I don't have any 7.62x54 ammo so this would mean adding a new calibre. Having said that, I can get a 91/30 in excellent condition with 1,200 rds of ammo for $399. This would be more of a plinking/range rifle.

I have handled and fired the Axis series of rifles and found them to be very good - outstanding value in such a low cost platform. They are quite accurate rifles and come with factory bore sighted optics in a package that will run right around $500 taxes in. A Mosin Nagant is a nowhere near as accurate as those but it is a powerful, rugged and cheap to feed bolt action rifle. Ultimately, I plan on picking up all three, just not sure which one to go with first. I am leaning towards the Savage Axis in .308 to replace the Ruger Gunsite Scout that I ended up selling to raise some quick cash. Which would you choose and why?
Doc Torr wrote:"Those who live by the sword get shot by those who see them coming a hundred yards away."
roscoe wrote:.....and don't plan on being The Humongous - it ain't happening.

User avatar
crypto
ZS Donor
ZS Donor
Posts: 16637
Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 7:37 pm
Location: City of Saint Louis

Re: Decisons....Decisons...

Post by crypto » Fri May 08, 2015 7:57 pm

I would not recommend the savage in .223. I've had 2 of them (in .223) and they are indeed tack drivers with the right ammo (both of mine were well under 1MOA), but they usually have a slow twist rate that is tuned for varmint loads and keyholes on defensive or match 5.56 ammo. Last time I looked they were all set up with 1:12" twists that maxed out at 55gr bullets.
MF'N TEAM LEADER

"Some people think that the best way to stop the leopard is to cut the horns off the gazelle. This, my friends, is insane."

Image
Image

User avatar
Jeriah
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 18722
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 4:12 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Original Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead 04, and 28 Days Later are my top three, in that order.
Location: Chicago, IL
Contact:

Re: Decisons....Decisons...

Post by Jeriah » Fri May 08, 2015 8:50 pm

In general, I would say that a scoped, .308 bolt action is a great thing to add to one's armory.

Bear in mind my current mindset towards firearms purchases is that they should enhance the spectrum of skills I'm able to learn, and serve as tools I can use once I master those skills. I don't mean to sound all serious and Mr. No Fun about it; I just mean that I don't want to end up with a garage full of sports equipment I never use, nor a safe full of guns I never shoot.

A Mosin is the kind of gun that you'll shoot a few times, and then it'll just sit in your safe. At least, that's what mine does. Do. I have two. They look good hanging on a wall with an old Russian helmet and an Enemy at the Gates poster, but that's about it. I'm not a Mosin hater but I don't think it's the right answer when you've got $500 burning a hole in your pocket. A Mosin is more of a "my buddy needed a hundred bucks for rent and I was kind of drunk so I bought it off him" kind of gun-buying decision.

A .223 bolt action doesn't appeal to me all that much. Full disclosure, I think varminting is stupid. Bear in mind, I was raised by hippies, so the idea of exploding small animals seems really dumb to me. You can't eat 'em, so why shoot 'em? If you live on a farm and need to destroy them to protect your crops or livestock, or if you have a really different idea of fun than I do, then by all means, go seek the pink mist. I'm not judging other people for their hobbies, just explaining the reason why there's no .223 bolt action that's going to appeal to me, notwithstanding Crypto's criticisms of that particular model.

On the other hand, I recently bought a .308 bolt action, so that I can try my hand at precision and long-range shooting. Sometimes the rifle talks to me when I'm sleeping and tells me to buy a deer tag and go hunt. (I'm overcoming my hippie upbringing, slowly.) Plus I'm hoping to take a precision rifle class in the future and the gun I bought (Remington 700 SPS Tactical AAC, 20" heavy barrel threaded for a suppressor) is going to do the job. It was $700 plus a $200 Bushnell scope, which was the cheapest I could bring myself to go.

I'm a little concerned that the Axis, while it seems like a great value, will over time begin to disappoint you if you try to get into any real precision shooting. Some people have gotten good results by replacing the stock and trigger, but they end up spending more in the long run than just buying a decent rifle to begin with. I'd look at a Remington 700 in .308, doesn't have to be the Tactical model, because it's a really standard platform with lots of aftermarket support, and a rock-solid reputation.

But, let me ask you: if you want a precision .308, what about just putting a really nice scope on your M1A?
Image

User avatar
crypto
ZS Donor
ZS Donor
Posts: 16637
Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 7:37 pm
Location: City of Saint Louis

Re: Decisons....Decisons...

Post by crypto » Fri May 08, 2015 9:21 pm

In the Savage .223's defense, when I was shooting 53gr black hills ammo, both of mine could print 100m cloverleafs all day, and didnt get drifty until 300m or so. It was a sublimely fun benchrest gun, and relatively cheap to feed even with Black Hills because the rate of fire was so slow. I used to go out with a 50 round box and make it last over an hour. Superbly good times with it. no recoil to speak of.

It just wasnt very useful in the grand scheme of things.

Edit: Full disclosure: I had a 11BVSS and a 10FLP, both pre-accutrigger, if you want to check relative specs.

From what I understand, savages made now are more accurate than Savages made in the 90s.
MF'N TEAM LEADER

"Some people think that the best way to stop the leopard is to cut the horns off the gazelle. This, my friends, is insane."

Image
Image

Doctorr Fabulous
ZS Lifetime Member
ZS Lifetime Member
Posts: 12210
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2009 3:06 pm
Favorite Zombie Movies: Evil Dead, Zombieland, 28 Days/Weeks Later

Re: Decisons....Decisons...

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Fri May 08, 2015 9:32 pm

crypto wrote:In the Savage .223's defense, when I was shooting 53gr black hills ammo, both of mine could print 100m cloverleafs all day, and didnt get drifty until 300m or so. It was a sublimely fun benchrest gun, and relatively cheap to feed even with Black Hills because the rate of fire was so slow. I used to go out with a 50 round box and make it last over an hour. Superbly good times with it. no recoil to speak of.

It just wasnt very useful in the grand scheme of things.

Edit: Full disclosure: I had a 11BVSS and a 10FLP, both pre-accutrigger, if you want to check relative specs.

From what I understand, savages made now are more accurate than Savages made in the 90s.
I'm showing the XP stainless in stock in Canadian gun stores with a 1:9 twist in .223, which would make me think they will run up into the 64gr loads without a problem, maybe 69gr depending on construction and velocity.
Opinions subject to change in light of new information.
Image
http://i.imgur.com/wG6ZMjE.jpg

User avatar
mantis
* * * * *
Posts: 3236
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2007 9:56 pm
Location: Brantford, Ontario

Re: Decisons....Decisons...

Post by mantis » Fri May 08, 2015 10:24 pm

Thanks for the feedback. I am definitely going to go with the .308 Savage and also grab the .223 version when my next bonus cheque comes in.
Doc Torr wrote:"Those who live by the sword get shot by those who see them coming a hundred yards away."
roscoe wrote:.....and don't plan on being The Humongous - it ain't happening.

Post Reply

Return to “General Firearms Discussion”