I had the opportunity to site in a couple of youth models last fall. Both in 243 win. They performed vary well with factory ammo and were even more impressive with handloads. i share your sentiments about the Axis.Having bought, sold, traded and shot the heck out of centerfire hunting rifles for 50 years now I will say with confidence that the average out-of-the-box cheapo hunting rifle of today will outshoot the average out-of-the-box, top-of-the-line sporters of yesteryear hands down, regardless of their unquestionably inferior aesthetics.
Dang, I wish I had known you. I want a bolt .223 and those triggers are simple to safely adjust.I recently acquired an Axis in .223 caliber, and the trigger-pull was too hard. This was a basic model that you couldn't modify the pull on, and of course it didn't have the accu-trigger. In the vise, it shot great, but I got rid of it. I love the older Savages.