First and Last Savage DIY Build

Discussion in 'Rifles, Bullets, Barrels & Ballistics' started by royinidaho, Aug 26, 2008.

  1. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

    Jan 20, 2004
    A while back the need came into the family for another rifle for a son-in-law. He's not worth an expensive custom job. But he is 'family';)

    As things happened James Jones had a 110 Action for sale. He had squared the action face and the price was more than reasonable.

    I traded some stuff to Tyler Kemp for a 7mm Rem Mag barrel and factory wood stock.

    Sharpshooter Supply provided the trigger guard, receiver screws, recoil lug, barrel nut and action wrench. The wrench was a waste of money for only one build. I could have gotten by with some leather strap and a pipe wrench.:D

    I purchased a Leupold one piece base and had a set of Leuy rings and a VX-II 3-9 on hand; also.

    I also used a single shot follower. (That otta get that first shot a bit more respect;))

    I had decided early on to not do anything that wasn't absolutely necessary. Things like pillar bedding etc., would be done only if needed. Idaho/North Utah is pretty dry, except when raining. I ensured the wood is well sealed both inside and out.

    I did some simple things like enlarging the receiver screw hole, did a little palm swell development and my standard bed liner finish. Besides its easy and very durable.

    When the parts arrived from SS supply it didn't take long for things to get screwed together.

    After some tinkering I got the head space to where it was some where close. I don't understand head spacing on the belt as after a few shots with belted cases I seem to always end up shifting the head space to the shoulder.

    I loaded up a shot and let 'er rip. Chrono said 2850 and there was a new hole in the back stop. Pretty cool, says I.:rolleyes:

    I chose Hornady 139 BTSPs for the intended use of the rifle. I've always had good luck w/accuracy and performance of Hornady's spire points.

    A study of Hodgon's reloading data page and remembering an H-1000 thread, I chose H-1000 as a starting powder.

    I chose 65 grains as a starting load.
    I used Fed 215 primers (not GMs)

    Seating depth was with the case mouth somewhere within the crimping ring. I figured this was a good enough position to use as all Hornady's I've worked with in several cartridges settled in somewhere between the edges of the crimp ring.

    Wind was 7 to 24 mph with lulls.

    First 3 shot group was strung vertically and spanned a foot at the 200 yd target.

    Velocities were:3027/3020/3024

    I went to 66 grains of h-1000. Group was identical to the first.

    I then shifted the seating depth to where the case mouth is EXACTLY at the bottom of the crimping ring. This is common setting in my experience and just a few thou shallower than the previous setting.

    As expected velocity dropped to 2995. The two shots went into 0.2 MOA but 3 MOA low.

    I shifted to 68 gr of H-1000 and Fed GM primers for the next two shots.

    The two shot group was just below the previous group going into 0.425 MOA w/velocities of 2986 & 2993.

    Necessary adjustments were made to shift the point of impact to where it should be.

    Two shots were fired with the 68gr and COL setting of the previous group except Fed 215s were used (not GMs) Velocities were 3024 and 3018 and went into 0.52MOA. Spot on for sighting purposes.

    It sure seems that Fed 215s are a bit 'hotter' than GMs as Kirby noted in a recent thread.

    The calibration marks on the Leuy VX-II are quite accurate and shift move immediately.

    This action would be better suited to something worth building as in 7mm/300 RUM.

    Savage trigger (not accu) ain't all that bad.

    I gained a lot of respect for 'real' gun smiths. Enough so as to leave rifle building to them from now on (well I do have one more in the final stages:(). I can make 'em shoot, if the metal parts have been fitted properly, but the term "fit and finish" doesn't seem to exist in my garage.

    I don't think gun/riflesmiths are paid enough.
  2. James H

    James H Well-Known Member

    Jan 15, 2006
    For some reason I don't see any pictures:D

  3. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

    Jan 20, 2004
    Hey, It's just a black factory Savage with stainless nut and lug. Nothing unique about that.

    I guess I'll do a pic.:rolleyes:
  4. Ridge Runner

    Ridge Runner Well-Known Member

    Dec 13, 2002
    Roy, H-1000 is awful slow for a 7 RM, try some 4350 or 4831, some 140 bergers or accubonds seated out as far as you can get them, either touching the lands or max mag length. 2900 is pretty anemic for a mag case. I've ran 67 gr of H-1000 in my 6.5 gibbs with less than stellar velocities, never could get enough in the case to cause pressure signs.
  5. Tyler Kemp

    Tyler Kemp SPONSOR

    Aug 10, 2006
    Or some RL-22, oughta boost velocity right up there.
  6. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

    Jan 20, 2004
    I appreciate the powder suggestions.

    68 grains of H-1000 is giving great accuracy and 3025 FPS MV.

    The rifle will be delivered with 50 loaded rounds which will last the guy maybe 20 years at the rate he's going. This rifle isn't for "one of us" or it wouldn't even be a Rem Mag.:rolleyes:

    The H-1000 has been getting in the way and I can use the shelf space.

    None of this makes sense for LRH.

    I kind of feel bad that I had to come down a rung or three for this guy, but he is a National Guard E-8 (still wet behind the ears cannon cocker) and he is married to my daughter.

    As they say you can pick your butt but you can't pick your in-laws.:D
  7. eddybo

    eddybo Well-Known Member

    Jan 5, 2007
    Hope your son in law appreciates the efforts and the fine shooting rifle you built him. Good job.

    Gunsmiths do not get paid are right about that.

    I have been trying my hand at learning to chamber. I have spent hundreds of hours in the shops to this end. I built a bunch of stuff still no chambers cut except in barrel stubs to make dies. I think I finished the last 2 parts of the puzzle last night. I had to make a bushing to keep the muzzle centered in the headstock and a ring to go around the tailstock quill to indicate off of. Now if my taper will arrive for my floating reamer holder I will be ready to chamber a barrel.
    Only problem is the action I planned to use for my first build got turned in to a f-class FTR rifle a while back. As usual I have either stocks and barrels but no action, or an action but no stock or barrel. This is getting frustrating. BTW if your wanting a kreiger better get your order in, I am going to order a lifetime supply of barrels here in a week or so and they are going to be busy.