Website to exclude, • July, 2008

Fifty years ago, Savage Arms presented a new bolt-action sporting rifle. In the pistol world, this was news. Savage was most well known for that is sleek lever action Model 99, called for the year of its introduction at the finish of the 19th century. The firm had produced a couple of bolt actions, however they had tendency to be undistinguished in styling and also performance, and were viewed as “poor man’s hunting rifles.”

Savage 110 .30-06 is Massad Ayoob’s just southpaw bolt action, the very first of its type to be factory-produced.

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The brand-new rifle, dubbed the version 110, to be different. It was built to run after the big dog, Winchester’s version 70, long well-known colloquially in pistol circles as “the rifleman’s rifle.” The 110’s architecture work, begun in 1956, was done primarily by the late Nicholas Brewer. Brewer had actually sought to architecture a dependable bolt activity arm with superior accuracy and an affordable price. Firearms designers have because marveled at the brilliance v which Brewer an unified economy of produce with quality of end-user function.

In his authoritative text “Bolt activity Rifles,” candid de Haas defined in great detail how much cleverness had gotten in Brewer’s design of the model 110’s action. Here’s one example: “The 110 sear, a marvel of ingenuity, offer a 3-fold function: as sear, bolt stop and also cocking indicator,” de Haas spicy out.

There were 2 other components that recorded the gun-buying public’s attention and also assured the the new rifle would stay on the manufacturing line for the next fifty percent century. Presented in 1958, the pistol was quickly made easily accessible in a left-handed model, and in 1962, the company made actions and also barreled actions available separately.

Southpaw factor

Since the inception of the bolt activity rifle in the 19th century, the bolt had constantly been ~ above the best side, plan for procedure by a right-handed, appropriate eye dominant shooter. Converting one for left-handed usage was a very expensive tradition gunsmithing proposition. Brewer, native the beginning, designed the rifle come be made with one of two people right-handed or left-handed bolt handle. The resourcefulness of the architecture is that it is no mirror image in the southpaw versus northpaw models: in each, because that instance, the bolt stop/takedown bar is top top the right side of the receiver, or activity housing.

Note thumb place on the sliding top-tang hands-on safety, one ergonomic and also ambidextrous function that to be a Savage exclude, in firearms of its kind at time that introduction.

Various approximates indicate the somewhere between one-sixth and one-twelfth of the human population is left-handed. Over there are plenty of other world who are right-handed yet left eye dominant, and are far better off shooting from their left shoulder. Firing indigenous the left shoulder v the bolt’s operating manage on the best side of the rifle have the right to be very awkward. The Savage design 110 to be the very very first production rifle manufactured for lefties, through the bolt take care of on the harbor side of the gun.

Most Mauser kind actions (and, like the Winchester design 70, the Savage model 110 was at its core a Mauser type rifle) had actually the hands-on safety in ~ the ideal rear of the action, to give ready access to a right-handed shooter’s thumb. Nick Brewer draft the model 110 v a flavor safety, a sliding switch on the tang, or the component of the rifle’s activity that mated v the peak edge the the wooden stock. Push it forward to fire, on slide it back for “on safe.” because the resulting the twin barrel “hammerless” shotgun in the ahead century, this system had been acquainted to sportsmen about the world, and those in the United says were no exception. They evaluate a high-powered rifle that operated the exact same way.

And, the course, the tang safety and security is ambidextrous, equally accessible to right hand or left. Indeed, countless of united state right-handed shooters have found it more natural and also quick to run than the three-position “flipper” at the appropriate rear of the version 70’s action. This type of manual safety would later on be duplicated in various other fine rifles, indigenous the an initial iteration that the Ruger design 77 come the new Browning X-Bolt.

Custom rifle factor

Southpaw Savages aren’t mirror image designs. Appropriate hand bolt design (black artificial stock) and also left hand design (wooden stock) both have bolt release/takedown bar at exact same spot on appropriate side of receiver (arrows).

The 1950s was a time when it to be hugely renowned for shooters to “sporterize” bolt activity military rifles, which to be flooding the market. Since brand-new “sporter barrels,” lighter and more tapered than hefty duty armed forces rifle barrels, to be desirable, part importers just removed the barrels from the cruddier military surplus guns, and just marketed the actions, understanding that gunsmiths and home hobbyists to be going to install new barrels anyway. Due to the fact that military stocks had tendency to be heavy, bulky, ugly, and unnecessarily long at the front, the first step in “sporterizing” was frequently putting the barrel and activity into some new wood. Thus, “barreled actions” were likewise popular on the excess market.

Winchester, Remington, et. Al. Would not sell just the action or the barreled action. Lock figured, correctly sufficient from a advertising standpoint, that there was an ext profit in selling a totally assembled rifle. However, the individual that wanted a customized rifle through a modern, American-made activity or action and barrel would certainly now have to pay full price because that a whole rifle, only to litter away the stock and also replace it through a freshly purchased one. Savage observed a market here, and also wisely went for it.

Their 1962 announcement the they would market actions and barreled actions separately, for much much less than the expense of a totality rifle, was a brilliant move. It endeared them come gunsmiths and also gun shops with gunsmithing services, due to the fact that it carried in much more business.

But, an ext than anything else, it was the affordability of the model 110 combined with its outstanding performance that preserved it in the hands of outdoorsmen and also on the racks of pistol shops.

Cost factor

Savage expressly designed the model 110 come shoot just as well as—and even outshoot—the iconic model 70 Winchester, and to carry out it in ~ a markedly reduced price point. Castle succeeded. In 1962, Remington introduced their model 700, which would conveniently outstrip the Winchester in popularity and become the best-selling contemporary bolt action rifle ever. Savage preserved performance pace through the Remington 700—and undersold the too.

The first port-side bolt handle endeared the 110 to lefties. However, the 110’s esthetic attributes did no appeal to classic gun buffs. Keep in mind truncated bolt configuration (1), non-streamlined bolt handle (2), stamped alloy create guard (3), and also machine-cut checkering (4), and pedestrian finish on both wood and metal.

In 1966, as soon as the 110 received a slight style upgrade, that still distinctly undersold the competition. The Remington model 700 bolt action started in ~ $129.95 manufacturer’s argued retail price (MSRP) then, and the Winchester version 70 at $149.95. By contrast, the shooter can buy a Savage model 110 brand-new for as tiny as $102.50, according to the 1966 execution of the yearly Gun Digest.

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Today, a Hunter series rifle indigenous Savage starts at an MSRP that $564, consisting of Savage’s Accu-Trigger, about which much more shortly. By contrast, the shortest MSRPs i can find on the network for the current “big three” of bolt action rifles room $779 because that the all-weather version of the Ruger 77 mark II, $900 for the Remington design 700 BDL, and $999 for the recent reincarnation that the Winchester design 70. It shows up that the Savage 110 series is currently an even far better value, proportionately, than it was when it was introduced in 1958.