Need input on a couple rifles Im looking at the CZ 527 Varmint target or the Tikka t3 super varminter in 223 any recommendations appreciated. Im somewhat familiar with Tikka's had one a long time ago in 338 win and it was a tack driver. looking for something mostly for prairie dogs but also some coyote hunting.
I have a T3 lite SS 223 and a 527 american 223. Both rifles are extremely accurate and one doesn't outshoot the other and both have great triggers as well with the single set on the CZ being a little nicer. Both also have nice smooth actions with good design but I give the advantage to the Tikka because of the 60 degree bolt lift.
I can't find one thing about the 527 I dislike, it's a quality gun from end to end. It comes in a very nice stock with a great magazine system. The mags are metal and tough. My 527 is also a bit lighter than my T3.
I do have a few gripes about the Tikka. First being the stock... it sucks. It is super cheap and very flexible. The ergonomics aren't bad by any means but I just can't get over the cheap toy feel. There's a few aftermarket options but just for the cost of the B&C medalist I would have $900 into a rifle with a plastic bottom metal assembly and at that point I'm reaching a different price point of rifles. That brings me to my other concerns which is the bottom "plastic" and mag, they are extremely cheap. IMO a $650 rifle shouldn't come with a plastic trigger guard and mag assembly. There is also no factory options and the only aftermarket is CDI which I'm not a fan of on a rifle like this. The mags also aren't cheap at $60-70. I've got no problem paying that for a GOOD mag but not a crappy injection molded polymer. The mags for the 527 are $35-40 in comparison and are metal.
The CZ is a more thought out and better put together rifle, it doesn't need aftermarket options. That said I bought my Tikka because of the 1:8 twist which no other manufacturer offers in a 223 and despite my dislikes it does what I want as a target rifle so I probably won't be selling it. If you want a 1:8 223 I say buy it if you can live with the downsides but it wouldn't be my first choice for a field rifle because of the plastic. The CZ Varmint is 1:9 twist which will allow you to shoot at least 69gr bullets and possibly some 75's and 77's but it definitely won't stabilize 80gr.
Do keep in mind that any Baretta rifle (tika & modern Sako) will have a very generously sized chamber neck - my experience has been up to .007" greater than the diameter of the neck of your loaded round.
This can be a problem on a varmint rifle if you are trying to get many loadings out of your brass as your die will be forced to work it excessively vs a properly sized neck.
They do this to prevent an overpressure situation in case of carbon fouling at the case mouth or excess brass thickness in the neck as a result of up or down necking brass to a different cal.
I have always been a huge fan of the savage rifles..Most are
extremly accurate right out of the box..And there is so much
you can do with them..I have never had one that did not shoot.
I have a mod 10 in 223 that when I do my part it will shoot into 1 inch
at 250 yards all day unless it is very windy..And the price is outstanding.
one shot one kill is a wonderful thing
I was at my club this past Sunday and I got to see, hold and shoot a CZ 527 Varmint in 223. Very nice rifle. It was not as heavy as I expected, I could easily shoot it off hand. Regarding accuracy, the owner only had some cheap junk ammo and he did not put the scope on properly so I did not hit the target at 100 but I would not blame the rifle for that as I only took one shot. Of note, great trigger.
CZ is very popular at my club with the 22LR shooters. They use it scoped for a silhouette match we run regularly.