picky savage model 12

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picky savage model 12

Post by Reload3006 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:10 pm

OK i have a model 12 in 223 think i already know what y'all are gonna tell me but here goes anyway. I finally bought me a savage model 12 varmint and was really expecting sub moa with it. but it totally has sucked at least in the 55gr area. with factory Remington and pmc ammo it BLOWS. i have managed to get less than a one inch group at 122yds (my home range) I loaded up some sierra 69 gr and some hornady 68 grain. ammo that did a little better than one inch i used Winchester primers and ramshot tac power. The rifle was dropped but I cant see any real damage. and the sub one inch group was shot after that. is the rifle just screwed and need to go back to savage for adjustment. or is it the 1 -9 twist barrel over stabilizing the lighter bullets ... what do Y'all think?
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by hawcer on Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:26 pm

I can't get remington 55gr ammo to shoot well in anything...and the PMC is a bit better in my AR15.

I just picked up a 12fv but I haven't shot it yet. But have heard from other guys that the accuracy will get better once you get some rounds put through it(150-200).

I wouldn't fault the gun if you can get sub 1 inch groups at 122 yards with your reloads...looks like you are on the right track in load development anyway.

Stock bedding can help...or even a higher grade stock.

For what it's worth...sub one inch groups for a out-of-the-box stock rifle is pretty darn good in my book.

oh yeah....for bullets in the 55gr and under catagory(don't go under 50gr) try some competition grade bullets in those weights...or at least a vmax. FMJ's are not really designed to deliver sub moa,imo.

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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by RemMan700 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:33 pm

Well first off a new gun might take a little time to break in before it settles in and the groups tighten up. Bullets from 40-69 grains should work fine for the 1-9 twist. I think your gun is fine but that you just need to experiment some more and find what your gun likes. What kind of bench are you shooting from? The best way to shoot from the bench to test your ammo is to shoot off sand bags or from a good rifle rest so you have a very small amount of shooter related error.
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by hawcer on Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:37 pm

If it was dropped...try loosening up the action screws and then re-snug them ,it might be in a slight bind causing some weird results....heck , you might as well make sure the accutrigger is adjusted for the lightest pull while you are at it.

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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by Reload3006 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:48 pm

that sounds like a plan. the trigger seem pretty good to me right now. its light and crisp.
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by Reload3006 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 3:50 pm

oh yea i have a bench but intend to make a better one. I have a Read head from bass pro rifle rest that i have been using some day when i win the lotto .. (may have to buy a ticket first) i plan to get that lead sled.. it really looks like the ticket.
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by DanRickard on Fri Nov 19, 2010 4:24 pm

i say, do a ranged load out of 100 rounds.

this is where you go from .5 gr under lowest and do 10, then go up by .1 gr for each 10.
you could even do a little math and figure out the best stepping to do the entire load range for the bullet and rifle.
i do this for every new bullet or powder i shoot, and have always been able to find a really good load area to work from.

shoot them, mark which hit where, upper right, lower left, low, or high.. stuff like that.. then when your done, choose the best one, then do another ranged load working from that good set, and go .1 gr up and down from it to refine the load.
i can usualy build up a good custom load for a rifle in 2 trips to the range and 200 rounds easy.

my ar15 hates factory bullets, i have yet to find anything that shoots worth a crap at 150 yards or more. i've only been able to go long distance with my reloads. 55gr bullets work good in my CMMG but the 62 gr ones make the real distances.

rifle is prolly good, they are built to be dropped, just not dropped kicked.. lol..
take it apart, and put it back together, so everything gets seated good..
it will also take a bunch of rounds before you get used to pulling the trigger the same every time.. small variances like your seeing are usualy due to wind and trigger pulls.

good luck,
dan
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by Daywalker on Fri Nov 19, 2010 4:52 pm

I was helping a buddy with his brand new Savage Model 10 in .308. I know it isn't the .223 your talking about, however a story and lessend learned here. The first day at the range, I could not get it to zero in worth crap or even group for what it was zeroed in for. I did not mount the scope, (I am not saying the scope if your problem, the years you have stated that you reload for, I am sure you are well versed with rifle set up and thing like that), he had mounted the scope adn really have not done that before. Got the rifle home to remount the scope and all the screws were loose. Got them all tightended up good and snugged. Went back to the range yesterday, finally got the factory rounds to move in the direction where I wanted them too. Just could not get them to tighten up at all. Was getting mad and though the Savage hype was becoming a bunch of bullcrap. Well, a little more studying, I found that the screws to the stock and trigger gaurd had came loose. I knew to check for these and for what ever reason, it slipped my mind. I felt like a real ass.. So after getting the allen wrenches out and tightening everything down really well, Everything fell into place. I got is zeroed at 100 yards, hitting bullseye. I did a 3 shot group just to make sure and the three shots werent touching, yet pretty darn close to it with factory 150 grains. I let him do the rest of the shooting to get used to his new rifle and get the feel of it since he has not shot for many years...

The moral for me is, triple check everything. The stock, the trigger gaurd, the scope mount everytihng. A lessen I learned and will not forget. Everything became better after that...

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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by Reload3006 on Fri Nov 19, 2010 5:06 pm

Daywalker wrote:I was helping a buddy with his brand new Savage Model 10 in .308. I know it isn't the .223 your talking about, however a story and lessend learned here. The first day at the range, I could not get it to zero in worth crap or even group for what it was zeroed in for. I did not mount the scope, (I am not saying the scope if your problem, the years you have stated that you reload for, I am sure you are well versed with rifle set up and thing like that), he had mounted the scope adn really have not done that before. Got the rifle home to remount the scope and all the screws were loose. Got them all tightended up good and snugged. Went back to the range yesterday, finally got the factory rounds to move in the direction where I wanted them too. Just could not get them to tighten up at all. Was getting mad and though the Savage hype was becoming a bunch of bullcrap. Well, a little more studying, I found that the screws to the stock and trigger gaurd had came loose. I knew to check for these and for what ever reason, it slipped my mind. I felt like a real ass.. So after getting the allen wrenches out and tightening everything down really well, Everything fell into place. I got is zeroed at 100 yards, hitting bullseye. I did a 3 shot group just to make sure and the three shots werent touching, yet pretty darn close to it with factory 150 grains. I let him do the rest of the shooting to get used to his new rifle and get the feel of it since he has not shot for many years...


Thanks for the input. I hadn't checked the scope rings but i just took the gun apart and put it back to gather hopefully it will get better. i had a similar thing going on on my rem 700 30-06 found my scope to be defective the focus ring was lose and throwing the gun everywhere at each shot.

The moral for me is, triple check everything. The stock, the trigger gaurd, the scope mount everytihng. A lessen I learned and will not forget. Everything became better after that...
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by Mohunter on Sun Nov 28, 2010 7:56 pm

If all else fails, you might give Savage a call and see if you can send the rifle back for checking out and adjustments.

Mine shot tight right out of the box. I didn't expect great results right off the git go, but rather than just randomly firing into my sandbox, I put a target on there with 4 smaller targets on it that I use for .22lr and took 1 shot at each target. My results went like this.....1st shot bullseye, 2nd shot bullseye, 3rd shot bullseye, 4th and 5th shots at same circle......same hole.

This was within the first 20 shots out of the box, bore sighted, and scope zeroed in. I just about fell off my bench!
Ever since then, I can shoot cloverleafs all day long at 100yards, and 1 ragged hole at 50yrd.

I don't know much about the .223 since I've never had one, but the rifle should shoot under 1/2" at 100yrd. with the right load, so maybe you just haven't found the right one yet?
Have you ever thought about trying some Nosler Ballistic Tips?
My rule of thumb is that if it won't shoot Nosler BT's then something is wrong. Every rifle I own will shoot BT's better than any other bullet I've ever fed them.
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by kcatto on Mon Nov 29, 2010 1:15 am

one thing I did not see in the posts.... You never mentioned if this was a new gun or a new gun to you (used)

but if it is brand new.... savage has a break in on their barrels.... did you follow the break in procedure?


just an idea....


Last edited by kcatto on Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:00 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by DanRickard on Mon Nov 29, 2010 1:19 am

kcatto wrote:one thing I did not see in the posts.... You never mentioned if this was a new gun or a new gun to you (used)

but if it is brand new.... savage has a break in on their barrels.... did you follow the break in procedure?

I know it is stupid but I had a savage 110 that I could not get 2" groups at 50 yrds with ten rounds... but after talking with my old gunsmith instructor he had me run through a basic barrel break in and she dropped to a 1" groups at 100 yards.... which was as good as I could expect for just a factory 110 hunting bang stick.....

just an idea....

what is the barrel breakin method you used? could you describe the process?
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by kcatto on Mon Nov 29, 2010 1:25 am

Yes it is basically the same technique used here on the weatherby/Howa rifled actions....

http://www.legacysports.com/products/howa/howa_breakin.html

this is basically it in a nutshell....


Last edited by kcatto on Sun Dec 19, 2010 5:01 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by Reload3006 on Mon Nov 29, 2010 8:51 am

yea it was a brand new gun... I almost threw up when it was dropped No
Yea i went through the break in deal. but I'm thinking that I may need to send it to Savage. wasnt their fault it was dropped.... I have taken it loose from the stock and put it back havent gotten a chance to get back to the range with it. If icant get the group down under an inch i will call savage and arrange to get it sent back.
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by Mohunter on Mon Nov 29, 2010 3:20 pm

I would recommend sending it back to the factory for a check up. They may not even charge you anything for checking it out since it was dropped? If it hadn't been dropped, I'm also sure they wouldn't charge anything at all.....especially if it's a factory defect.


As far as barrel break in, I didn't follow any procedure for mine. I basically just shot about 4-5 rounds then ran a wet patch through it to check for metal shavings or copper shaving......found none.
Then did that a few more times with the same results and starting shooting as I normally would. I don't believe in the shoot 1 round...clean....shoot 2 rounds....clean...ect. and so on.
I think that's overkill.

If you really wanted to do a proper barrel / bore polish break in.........there's a kit you can buy that has caliber specific bullets that are coated with different sizes of fine grit polishing compound that actually smooths the inside of the bore on each firing. I think it's like a 20 shot sequence that polishes the bore, then your done. I have read that it works great, but I have never tried it myself.
It was developed by a competition shooter and I can't remember his name or the name of the kit/system......but I'm sure a google search for bore polishing would produce some results?
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by RemMan700 on Mon Nov 29, 2010 3:32 pm

Mohunter wrote:I would recommend sending it back to the factory for a check up. They may not even charge you anything for checking it out since it was dropped? If it hadn't been dropped, I'm also sure they wouldn't charge anything at all.....especially if it's a factory defect.


As far as barrel break in, I didn't follow any procedure for mine. I basically just shot about 4-5 rounds then ran a wet patch through it to check for metal shavings or copper shaving......found none.
Then did that a few more times with the same results and starting shooting as I normally would. I don't believe in the shoot 1 round...clean....shoot 2 rounds....clean...ect. and so on.
I think that's overkill.

If you really wanted to do a proper barrel / bore polish break in.........there's a kit you can buy that has caliber specific bullets that are coated with different sizes of fine grit polishing compound that actually smooths the inside of the bore on each firing. I think it's like a 20 shot sequence that polishes the bore, then your done. I have read that it works great, but I have never tried it myself.
It was developed by a competition shooter and I can't remember his name or the name of the kit/system......but I'm sure a google search for bore polishing would produce some results?

The bullet system is calld Tubb's Final Finish. You can but ammo already loaded with the bullets or you can buy the bullets alone and reload them yourself. I thought about trying it out but after doing some research it was a 50/50 toss up between working fine for some people and then others saying it really ate up their barrels and damaging the first couple inches of the throat of the barrel. So that scared me into not trying it.
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by hawcer on Mon Nov 29, 2010 3:48 pm

I don't think I'd use that stuff on a new barrel for the same reasons RemMan stated....I wouldn't hesitate to use that kit to help clean out an old neglected rifle barrel.... to bring it back to a usable condition.

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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by Mohunter on Mon Nov 29, 2010 4:28 pm

Hmmm........I'm glad you two brought that up because I wouldn't want someone damaging their otherwise fine rifle barrel based on something that I mentioned.
I hadn't heard about the negative reviews like those you all mentioned?
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by RemMan700 on Mon Nov 29, 2010 6:30 pm

Mohunter wrote:Hmmm........I'm glad you two brought that up because I wouldn't want someone damaging their otherwise fine rifle barrel based on something that I mentioned.
I hadn't heard about the negative reviews like those you all mentioned?

Well there are some good reviews out there where people used them in new barrels. The bad reviews just scared me off. I have nothing but good stuff when it comes to cleaning up an old barrel. It is just one of those things you have to take the gamble and try out.
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Re: picky savage model 12

Post by kcatto on Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:30 pm

I agree a proper break in with a jacketed bullet similar to one you intend to use would be my choice....

kinda like I would not break in a car engine with water then go back to oil.... maybe I am just weird....
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