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Old October 22, 2013, 03:40 PM   #1
Evad
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Join Date: February 4, 2011
Location: Fond du Lac, WI
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Savage 12 LRP Review

Make: Savage
Model: 12 Long-Range Precision
Caliber: 6.5 Creedmoor
Action: 4rd magazine-fed Bolt
Stock: HS Precision PST-114
Optic: Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50 EBR-1 FFP on 20moa Ken Farrell base with matched rings
Price as Tested: $2400

When I first found out about this rifle, I was looking to get into the world of long-range shooting without running myself into the poorhouse. After a bit of looking around and some patience, A gun store in my area had one in stock, so I went to check it out.

First Impressions
This is a gun with a no-nonsense look to it. It's all-black-everything style gives the impression that it means business. The receiver and barrel have a very smooth, uniform matte finish that cuts down on glare. In fact, there's not a shiny part on this rifle save the bolt, which is nicely jeweled.
It's a big gun with its 26'' heavy contour barrel attached to a receiver with a very thick housing and relatively small ejection port, where some bolt action rifles have most of the top of the receiver cut away. The HS Precision stock also lends itself to the beefiness of it all, with a wide forearm, thick grip, and squarish buttstock. The minute I picked up this rifle, it felt very solid and steady, and the entire stock had a rough textured finish which seemed to very effectively stick to my hands. At 11lbs. naked it is not a gun to be carrying around all day, but for its size, it didn't feel extremely heavy, just solid.

Ergonomics
The grip is a bit fat due to the ambidextrous palm swells, but I have hands on the bigger side of average, so it didn't cause me an issue. I still had plenty of finger to cover the trigger, and with precision rifles you don't need much anyway. All the mechanics on it were easy to reach, with the three-position safety located on the tang behind the bolt, the mag release on the bottom front of the magwell, and the bolt release on the "thumb side" of the shooting hand directly behind the bolt handle notch. The bolt handle has no knurling, but is large enough that it doesn't need any texture to easily operate even with gloves.

Functionality
The flush-fitting, stagger-stack box magazine has a tight spring which makes loading it a bit of a chore. it's not possible to snap the rounds down past the lips, they have to be pushed down in front of the lips and then slid back into place. the mag slides into the gun smoothly and locks with a tangible and audible click. The Target Accutrigger that comes on this gun is adjustable from a very touchy 6 oz. up to 2.5lbs via a small set screw. The only drawback is that to set it, the stock must be removed. It comes set from the factory at 11oz, which in my opinion is plenty light. The break is very crisp, with no discernable creep to it. After firing a round, I noticed that the bolt felt stiff in its movement, which I expect will smooth out as it breaks in. Here is where I ran into the only issue. Every few rounds, the bolt would drag considerably when I slid it backward to eject the spent round. On about the 25th round, the bolt handle lifted as normal, but would not budge rearward at all. After some firm tapping with my palm and the gun being passed between the few guys that were out there with me, there was a lot of head-shaking and shoulder shrugging. The decision was made to take it home and when I got there, I removed the scope, tapped the handle lightly with a rubber mallet, and the bolt freed up and the shell came out. The spent brass showed no signs of a burr in the chamber, so I decided to take the calm approach and simply cleaned the bore and chamber thoroughly, and put it back in my gun cabinet to see what happened the next time. Haven't had a problem since. I'm still not really sure what happened that first outing.

Performance
Obviously, with a model name like Long-Range Precision, this rifle is devastatingly accurate, shooting just over 1/2 moa consistently. The felt recoil of the necked-down .308 cartridge is tame by most standards, and the weight helps considerably with that. Overall it's a joy to shoot, especially if you don't like to miss.
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Old October 22, 2013, 03:55 PM   #2
precision_shooter
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This rifle in same caliber is still on my list of rifles I will purchase at some point...
Thanks for the review!

Were you using hand loads or factory ammo?
Did it show any preference to any particular bullet weight or design?
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Old October 22, 2013, 04:09 PM   #3
Evad
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I haven't had it out a lot, that's why the "performance" section is a little short. As I shoot more, I can post averages better. I was using Hornady Match 120gr. AMax's . I'd love to get into handloading, but the start-up cost is something I'll have to save up for.
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Old October 23, 2013, 07:45 AM   #4
semi_problomatic
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I like the 140 bergers. There's about a 3/4 to 1" poi shift up from 140's going to 120's. It's so predictable that I put one of those little green army men on top of my target in the middle of a ladder test of 140 grain bergers, popped the 120 in and hit it at 100m. I shoot the -10 predator hunter 1-max though.

I'm suprised you have to take apart your rifle to adjust the trigger. You don't on the 1-max, there's a little hole through the trigger guard you stick that tool through.

It's not a necked down .308 case, btw. It's a necked down 30 tc case. The 30 tc is based off the 300 savage. Also read some guys were making brass out of 22-250 cases which is based off the 30-06. But the case dimensions are different from a .308 win. either way.

Mine has a 24" barrel, so you'd have a little more speed maybe, but I can dig up what I was getting with my ladder test and what my loads were if you like.
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