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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Right now I have just about any standard caliber on the market, from 25-06 up to 338 win mag.

Have nothing on the very light end of the spectrum and my standard carry for whitetail is a Browning stainless stalker 270 win/zeiss conquest 3.5-10x44. Does all I want, but isn't really that heavy. My heavy is a Sako 75 Hunter stainless in 30/06

Looking at an elk/mule/whitetail combo next fall and want something else.

I will add that I handload so spare the ammo cost. I don't care and love to shoot.

Browning Abolt Ti
Weatherby ultralight
Kimber Montana
Sako Finnlight

Have never owned a Kimber, have a older Vanguard in 270 win, have several a bolts and sako's

I like Browning, my heart is with Sako, Kimber feels "flimsy", and the Weatherby is OK.

Browning: Have to be a short mag and I really don't care for them or go 7mm-08 or so otherwise choice is 300 wsm
Weatherby: 270 WM is my choice but gets long and heavy, quick, otherwise 30/06
Sako: SHINY barrel 30/06 or 300 wsm
Kimber: borderline not lightweight ???

Optics are not an issue.

Thanks for any input or fresh ideas.
 

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I went to the gun shop a while back with the express mission to come home with a light sporter.

I was convinced through diligent research that I was coming home with a Kimber Montana...............until I handled one. It felt like a club in my hands (the rounded fore-end felt awful) and looked like it had been finished with a can of Krylon primer. Did not come up well for me. Wasn't real thrilled with the smoothness of the action.

I ended up handling a Mark V Ultra-Lightweight. HEAVENS!!!! Night and day!!!! Bought one in 25-06. The gun is truly light as a feather and groups EXTREMELY tight.

I'm 150% satisfied with the Weatherby.
 

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Just to throw something else in the pot, have you considered the Ruger Frontier in .308 or 338 Federal? I'd think that would be a great woods gun for deer or elk, though the velocity loss of around 200 fps might limit you on range. You'd also have to factor in that you'd need a scout scope. (People have said that the Frontier could use either style scope, but I believe the Ruger manual says to not use the receiver-mounted scopes on a Frontier.)

I added a slip-on recoil pad to lengthen the LOP on my Compact, and it took very little time to get used to the rifle.
 

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I'm a big fan of Sakos. They're just too rich for my blood, but obviously not for yours as you have a number of them, and have considered buying Kimbers as well. A friend of my was nice enough to let me shoot a tray of ammo with his beautiful Sako .222 Rem. What a beauty, and oh so smooth. What a joy to shoot.

On the other hand, another friend of mine had the opportunity to shoot a box of ammo out of a Sako Finnlight in .30-06 two years ago at an IHEA convention, and he said the recoil was very unpleasant.

I understand your motivation for wanting a lighter rifle for elk hunting, but if you're looking at a .30-06 or a .300 WSM, don't forget to consider the higher recoil of a lighter gun, even with the calibers you are considering (and maybe you have already, and maybe it's not a factor for you).
 

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for a "Hunting" rifle, I would get a Stainless Ruger in .358 Win, with a laminated stock .... stick a 3-9 Leupold on it, and you can't do a whole lot better, no matter what you spend....... nice elk thumper, and low recoil too......ask BearTracker.....
 

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What about the Tikka T3 Lite? I would have thought that a Sako fan would have looked at them right away. I don't own one, but I've read a lot about them, and they sure seem to be a fine rifle from what I've read - smooth action, adjustable trigger, good accuracy, and just about 6 lbs. Available in several calibers that cover your needs. 300 WSM, 270 WSM, 338 Federal, 7mm Rem Mag. and so on ... For a reloader like yourself, I would consider a 270 WSM - reloaders are getting 3000 fps from 160 grain bullets, and 3150 from 150 grain bullets - I've only researched it on paper, but it's pretty much a 270 Winchester with an extra 200 fps at the muzzle when using the larger bullets - definitely good medicine for elk. Pretty cool caliber, but only for a reloader. Factory ammo is almost non-existent.
Remington also makes a titanium action 700, but they are pretty rare, and more $ than the Browning Ti.
Have fun with your search,
Mojo
 

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I have a Tikka T3 hunter in .308. In my opinion, it is all the things mentioned in the post above. I love the rifle and it is very light and pleasing to handle and shoot. I assume that Sako makes a counterpart???
 

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My Dad has a Tikka T3 Varmint and he loves everything about it, except for the single stack plastic magazine. The single stack is cumbersome to load, and having shot it a number of times myself, I can see what Dad means. If you had to reload in a hurry, you'd be totally frustrated. Okay! So a spare magazine you might think. Just remove the empty one and put in a full one? Dad has a spare plastic magazine and it won't load past number three! Work that out!!!!! Other than that, the Tikka is deadly accurate.

Dad and I both own Sako's as well. I have a Sako 57 Hunter in 223 and a Sako 75 Varmint in 308. Dad has a Sako 75 Hunter in 223. The Sako 85's are a step down in a number of respects from the 75, to the point that Dad and I won't be buying another Sako if the 85 is the direction Sako have taken. Dad owned one for a short time, like a couple of days, and found in that time that the same loads I use in my 223, he couldn't use in his new 85 in 223. All the dimensions in the critical areas. The magazine is shorter and with its "improved" release mechanism, is harder to remove. I'd hate to be trying to remove it with gloves on.

As Sako lovers, Dad and I are very sad to see Sako's going the way they are. We love our 75's and won't be getting rid of them. Sako made some great models before the 85 and it's difficult for Sako lovers to see what's happening to them now.

You haven't mentioned the Winchester Model 70's. I'd seriously have a look at them. I've mentioned Dad's and my new Model 70 Featherweights in 7mm 08. They fantastic! I'd highly recommend you check them out.
 
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