View Full Version : Savage 110 Scoop Please...

May 19, 2005, 07:10 PM
Been hearing some weird stuff about Savage from a who knows source and want to know the real scoop. A friend is contemplating getting a used 110 and had his head filled with gobbledegoop from someone, but he sounds like he knows what he's talking about. :confused:

Says the older 110's had a problem going off by themselves.
It bankrupted Savage.
Someone bought them out and brought back the 110's.
The problem is fixed.
Need to know if it was true and if so how to tell the older bad ones from the newer good ones.

Oh yeah, and the newer ones usually have bolt problems...?

I never heard of any of this stuff but do know one guy who has a broken bolt on his 110/06. AFAIK, 110's are good rifles but I'm no Savage afficiando so please advise if any of this is true or not. Thanks.

Ruger # 1
May 19, 2005, 07:38 PM
Never heard of either problem. It was my understanding savage went under because of money problems. I could be wrong, but I've never had a bad experience with any 110 I've came across. They're good, solid guns in my opinion.

May 20, 2005, 08:10 AM
Okay, here's the deal. Savages don't go off by themselves from the factory. They are an inerently safe design that is among the sturdier actions one can find that have a superb system of venting gas away from the shooter's eyes should a case head fail.

However, the trouble can come in when people start playing with the trigger. The trigger can be adjusted well, especially with a Timney trigger. However, as with all rifles, when you do a trigger adjustment, you have to ensure that you haven't adjusted it too light with too short a pull. Without scope mounted (just because there's no need to jar the scope), you should always perform a bump test with any trigger adjustments. Adjust the trigger, put the rifle back together, and cock it on an empty chamber. Then butt the rifle against the floor, butt downwards. If the trigger is unsafely adjusted, it may fire on its own as the shock is enough to jar the sear and pop the trigger loose. Some folks don't do this and end up with a rifle that is not safe to carry.

I have not personally heard about this with Savages, and have never read any documentation what so ever about it happening on factory rifles. Heck, I've never heard of it happening save for a warning about adjusting the trigger. Savage went through financial troubles because they had too many products and were stretched very thin. The finish on their 110's was weak and the stocks were really cheap looking. Never the finest looking rifles, the 110's became down right Blue Light Special in appearance. They have always been accurate, but some of the 110's, especially the E models, just looked like crap. Indeed, they didn't really look any better than the 320's, which really looked cheap, and the 99's were just too expensive to produce and make much profit on. The markets responded with people buying better looking Remingtons and the like.

Remember, except for Weatherby, none of the major firearms companies we know of today are owned by the founders or are really even remotely related to them save by name only. All of them went through major financial troubles at one time or the other and were bought and sold with some frequency. Smith and Wesson was owned for a time by a British company known as much for plumbing supplies as firearms. Remington was once owned by Dupont, and we all know about Winchester almost going belly up and now being made by US Repeating Arms.

Savage is doing well because the 110's accuracy reputation has finally reached the level where it should have been. Also, Savage has streamlined its production to a level where they are not so overextended. Most of all, though, it was bought and (I think) privatized by folks who have a passion for succeeding. Most established companies go through trouble not because their products are horrible, but because management loses vision and the lost energy very clearly shows up in the product, the advertising, and the like.

I would not hestiate to own a Savage, regardless of year of production. Both of mine are pre Accutrigger and are fine rifles. Both have adjustable triggers, one, a short action 110 in .243 (before they were called 10's) sold under the Stevens name, has a factory adjustable trigger whereas my 111 (which I recently rebarrelled to .270) has a timney in it. If I needed another rifle right now, I would not hesitate to get an Accutrigger, which is supposed to be utterly safe against the butt test. I am satisified with mine and as I have all the calibers covered (7mm Mag, .30-06, .308, .270, and .243), I haven't felt the need to upgrade.


May 20, 2005, 08:12 AM
She has been a flawless performer so far. I even got mine from the evil Walmart empire where as we all know Savage sends only the crappy broken guns to, or at least that was what my local Army/Navy store owner told me. :rolleyes:

May 20, 2005, 08:21 AM
By the way, the Savages of the early 1980's are identical in construction to those made in the late 1990's. The bolts did go through a change (along with the triggers) but this was not for safety's sake. The older bolts have a "C" style extractor on the bolt head which worked, but was needlessly complicated. The trigger was pretty tough to adjust as well. When the 110 C was introduced, that changed and all rifles went to the standard extractor that is used now (and is like the Remington 700).

I had a fellow at a posh Sports store near my home tell me he wouln't sell Savage rifles because he considered them poor quality. Now, that is fine and he lost the chance to sell me a rifle because of that. But, he proudly sells Remington 710's, which in nobody's book equals the Savage 110. He doesn't sell Savages, more likely, because he doesn't have distribution rights and doesn't want to expand his inventory to accomidate them. No problem and over diversification can cause real trouble. But, his excuse for not selling Savages (and a transparent reason to convince me not to buy a Savage but rather to purchase one of his excessively priced rifles) is full of crap. Perhaps you are finding a similar scenario?

As to the action, I consider it superior to the Remington 700 because it really is a safer design in my opinion. I like Remington's, save for the crappy 710, and would have no problem owning one and my opinion is just that, an opinion. But if the 110 were produced with the Remington name on it, Remington would likley find the 700 falling more by the wayside.

They might not, of course, as the 700 does give a more custom feel as it lacks the barrel nut and generally comes with a better finish. Of course, a Savage 114 can be had for the same price as the 700 BDL and of equal finish, though still with the blind magazine.


May 20, 2005, 08:25 AM
The neat thing about the 110, also, is that you can do everything to it yourself. You need not use a Gunsmith to change out the barrel, and changing the barrel is very easy and with fewer steps than any rifle with a shoulder on the barrel. Slide a go gauge into the barrel, slip the recoil lug on, screw the barrel with barrel nut all the way back into the receiver until it all stops, which sets minimum headspace, then tighten down the barrel lug, which increases headspace oh so slightly (between go and no go) and you are done. No shims, no grinding, no nothing.


May 20, 2005, 10:18 AM
He brought it over last night and it is an E model sporting the nicest wood that I've never seen on a Savage. Obviously an aftermarket stock. Mine has no letter after the 110 ans is plainjane, also an /06. Tonight after work I'll pull both bolts and compare with my sons 700 bolt to see which is which extractorwise. I bump tested his 110 last night as you described and it was ok but I'm unable to tell if it's an aftermarket trigger or not. I'll look closer tonight.

I did notice the vents on it last night and liked what I saw. Thanks for the heads up on the rifles, the guy he talked too was obviously out in left field on the subject as I suspected.

May 22, 2005, 05:55 AM
I have owned several Savage bolt actions, all of them inexpensive, all of them excellant shooters. The example I owned from the 1970's was the most accurate .30 calibe rifle I ever shot.
The one I own now is a .243 with the Accutrigger is excellent, even better than the old one.

Savage nearly went bankrupt due to management problems, not through any fault of the rifles. The '99 was discontinued because it could not accommodate long magnum cartridges, it was very labor intensive to build, and there were( still are) too few people with the skills required to build and maintain it.A used '99 is an excellent investment.

Savage still makes a great product, owned and made in the US, and the best shooting sporter rifle out of the box made today.

Mark :cool: