I plan the purchase of a new .243 purely for coyote hunting and am looking seriously at the Savage Model 10 Predator Hunter in bolt action. I understand that the stock has been stiffened via a dual-pillar aluminum bedding system and that it also features a medium countour free-floating button-rifled barrel, with synthetic stock covered in Mossy Oak Brush camo. The rifle also features a 3 x 9 camo Pentax scope, included in the price of $749 at Cabela's.
I have other Remington rifles that are excellent choices for coyotes, but they are all heavy bench rest single shots, and since AR-15 type rifles are illegal for me to own in California, my second choice is a bolt action.
The above Savage model offers the AccuTrigger in a 1 1/2-6 pound adjustment range. I know nothing about the Savage, but have heard favorable reports about its accuracy and trigger system. I would like to hear from owners of this particular model as to whether or not they agree with its apparent gooe reputation and if they would buy another one..... likes, dislikes about the rifle, etc., including its accuracy, trigger-friendliness, etc.
I have never handled the Savage, never shot one, and know diddly-zip about the rifle. If there is a better choice in the $750 price range that weighs 7.5 lbs, I would also like to hear about it.
Just over a year ago I shot my brother's 10 Predator Hunter and was so impressed that I bought a tacticle version (model 10 Precision Carbine) in .308 win to use at the range and for deer.
The trigger IS great, but the model 10 platform really shines all around.
A couple of points about purchase options:
According to savagearms.com they have a version of the Predator Hunter coming out for 2010 that will have the new accustock. My 10PC has it and the forend is a whole lot less flexy than my brother's PH without the full length aluminum bedding - but you'll have to wait awhile...
DON'T get the package combo w/ scope! I know it looks cool with the camo matched and all, but that Pentax glass is pretty dark. Even the $120 Simmons 6.5-20x40 that my bro put on his is a BIG improvement.
Also, with the combo you don't get the detachable box magazine that you get with the stand alone version - if that makes a difference to you.
Hope this helps - the 10 Predator Hunter is excellent, and I can personally say that it dispatches groundhogs and foxes with authority. When I visit my brother he has a tough time keeping it out of my hands!
Joe, you gave a great answer. I think I will wait for the AccuStock version. The only reason I brought up the combo is that Cabela's had it on its website for this particular rifle. Maybe it was a "special," meant for marketing purposes for this new caliber (it had been previously offered in .223 and .22-250 only). I want the stock as stiff as possible, so I will definitely wait for the AccuStock version next year. At this point I have several extra scopes available, and don't really require one that is a part of the gun purchase. Hey...if they offer it along with the rifle, that's fine, but if I can buy the rifle without the scope, but with the AccuStock at a lower price, that's even better.
I would keep the .22-250 that I have now, but I have developed some back problems and 14 pounds is almost at the point of breaking this old camel's back.
Thanks a million for the feedback. I will keep my ear to the ground and will order the rifle as soon as the AccuStock becomes available.rr
Yup, as bigngreen says, the Max 1 version will have the accustock (and less camo, which is my preference over the 'whole dip' version) and the older finishies will still have the original tupperware with full camo.
The old style is still a shooter, though, and for the record the accustock is supposed to make more of a difference with the heavier recoiling cartridges. I almost went with the Predetor Hunter in .243 myself, but when I saw I could get a more 'big game versatile' .308 WITH accustock from their law enforcement line I went with it - camo be damned! I am fine with a gun that shoots like this even if I don't particularly care for the looks!
I couldn't shoot anything but SUB 1/4" groups at 100yards when I tried my brother's. Shocked (and impressed) I turned and said to him, "It's shooting sub 1/4 MOA!" He responded, "They all do."
...and sure enough. There *must* be exceptions, but his does, my 10 PC does - - that's two different guns and calibers with *factory* ammo, even reman stuff! Plus every magazine and online review I've read has gotten similar results.
I like Jeff Quinn at gunblast's reviews, this was his experience:
The only bad reviews I have read (two) had something to do with "Jamming." They gave no explanation, but the only thing I could think of was that they reloaded some cases used on another rifle and didn't use a full-length die to resize the cases, or some such other problem related to improper reloading technique. I have never had anything jam in any rifle I have owned, and just haven't run across the problem, and I have been shooting for decades. I know if I had such a problem and it weren't associated with my reloading technique, I would certainly contact the company, and am sure they would handle the problem.
Sub-minute of angle groups usually are reserved for bench resters with expensive actions and barrels, expensive reloading equipment, extreme attention to detail, good optics and good shooting technique. This level of accuracy with an out-of-the-box is rare.....or at least it has been in the past. I can get it with my .222 Remington 40-X, and not too bad with my Cooper .20 VarTarg, but the old .22-250 is getting long in the tooth, even though with a 1,000 rounds through the tube, it still groups MOA, and as far as I am concerned, it works for coke-bottle sized ground squirrels at 300 yards. These are the type of targets I am mostly used to, so Coyotes are no problem as long as they are stopped. Running ones? Forget it!
One point that may or may not matter: You can own an AR-15 in CA. You have to make some ignorant modifications (bullet button, different pistol grip, etc) but if that's what you want for predators, get it.