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I purchased a LH Savage Axis .270 and am looking to upfit it to my needs instead of purchasing a high end rifle. I have always just purchased my rifles and added optics. After shooting a friends rifle that he upfitted to his liking I decided to try for myself. I am going for functionality not looks. My concern is putting the $ in the gun and not reaching the accuracy that I want. Any words of wisdom? If nothing else I will keep the rifle as is and keep as a back up.
 

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Welcome to the shooters forum.

I'd spend my money on a good scope and rings. After that I'd buy an assortment of ammo in various bullet weights and by different manufactures and determine which shoots best in your rifle. Also consider an aftermarket trigger if yours don't have the accutrigger.

Good luck with the new rifle and let us know what you decide and how it turns out.
 

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Monty pretty much nailed it.
Good optics is the first item, and that will probably cost more than you paid for the rifle.
Then find the bullet it likes, start with those high end custom loads, they usually come closer to being more accurate.
A good trigger is critical, I like a 2 1/2 pound pull on my hunting rifles, but it has to be clean and smooth.
Then comes the stock, your next major expense. I'm not familiar with Savage stocks, since I've never owned one, but if its a good candidate for a proper bedding job, then I would look at that. If not, I would find a quality aftermarket and have it properly bedded. Please notice, I kept saying "properly bedded". Finding someone that can do that is a task in itself, and they are not going to be cheap. Most anybody can bed one, but to do it right, not many can do that.

It sure is nice when you see the transition on each phase of your build and the improvements each makes. Welcome to the site and Good Luck.
 

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Welcome to the forum Probow. I'm in the process of doing what you are thinking about for more or less the same reason. I was gonna post a write up on the project when I was done but I guess I can share what I have done so far. So here is part one of my write up.

I got the ball rolling on my daughter's target/hunting rifle. I'm going to do it on the cheap and keep my gun smith out of the picture on this project. At least for now anyway. I picked up the rifle the other day at the local gun shop. I had to order it but it only took three days to get it. I'm using a Savage Axis Heavy Barrel in .308 Winchester. It came with a 22" 1 and 10 twist straight tapper barrel on it and does not have the Accutrigger. The Axis stock is what it is and I really don't plan on messing with it right now. It does have pillers in it but that's about it's only plus. The first thing I did was strip it down and gave it a good cleaning and reassembled. The trigger felt like it had a hand full of road gravel in it along with a mile of creep and over traveland the pull was over seven pounds. I spent about an hour on it. I swapped out the spring with one from a Pilot G2 ink pen and added a 3/8th long piece of 10-24 threaded rod. (That fix was found at Savage Shooters). I also very lightly honed the face and bottom of the sear. I also cut a couple of raps off the new spring. By the time I was done I got the pull wieght down to three pounds with a crisp release and just an ever so tiny tiny bit of over travel. I'm thinking the pull wieght will drop some more as the trigger assembly breaks in. The trigger pull wieght with the sear removed is only one pound so there is still a bit of friction playing into the mess somewhere. Anyway, it passed all my safety test and the only thing I didn't do was throw the gun on the floor. The action had a little roughness going on with the bolt when pushed or pulled through the reciever and I found that Savage stamps the serial number on top of one of the bolt lugs. The raised edges of the stampings was causing the problem so I honed the edges ot the stampings down and solved that little problem. I used marking blue to check the bolt lugs surface contact and it looks pretty darn good and is 90% plus contact on both lugs and has a very smooth feeling lock up, so I think I'll skip lapping them for now. Next I intalled a Weaver rail base with Weaver Grand Slam rings and then lapped the rings.
So far I only have a couple hours of time and $42.00 for rings and a rail mount into it. The trigger job didn't cost me anything cause I had those tw parts kicking around the shop. My goal is to keep the total cost around $500.00 not counting the cost of optics.

Warning: Don't mess with or alter the trigger assembly if you don't know what you are doing!
 

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A word of caution when messing with triggers. Many times the wear/contact surfaces are only surfaced hardened. Filing or taking metal off the contact surfaces can remove that hardened metal and make junk out of them. They will wear way too fast, creating the potential for random unwanted discharges.
 

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A word of caution when messing with triggers. Many times the wear/contact surfaces are only surfaced hardened. Filing or taking metal off the the contact surfaces can removed that hardened metal and make junk out of them. They will wear way too fast, creating the potential for random unwanted discharges.
I agree100%.
 

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A word of caution when messing with triggers. Many times the wear/contact surfaces are only surfaced hardened. Filing or taking metal off the the contact surfaces can removed that hardened metal and make junk out of them. They will wear way too fast, creating the potential for random unwanted discharges.
Yup and Savage triggers are one of those.
 

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I am def still learning. As I said I have always bought my rifles. Barry S that is alot of good info but I am a little nervous about messing with the factory trigger. I have been looking at the Timney trigger for the Savage Axis, a quick drop in and easily adjusted. I mounted the DNZ reaper mount for my optics. I am thinking of going with the Redfield Revolution 3x9x50. I have always been a Redfield fan and I love the lifetime guarantee. As for the stock I have been thinking about going with the Boyd's stock. Being a LH my options are limited. BKeith I am still on the fence for the Glass Bedding since it will be the most difficult part of the project I think. I have been looking through alot of reads to get ideas. Keep the ideas coming guys it is helping alot. Has anyone had bad experiences with the Newer Redfield optics?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I have also been looking at ammo. Any suggestions in this dept? I have always used Federal Premium Power Shok 150 grain for the knock down power. Going on an Elk hunt in September so I want to make sure I am zeroed.
 

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I would father see someone buy a mid priced rifle and spend the extra on a good scope, rings and base.
I have to admit I am partial to Buehler base and rings,they are just getting hard to find in the tall rings and 26mm's.Not many were produced in 30mm's.I have never had one fail.To bad they are not around anymore.
 

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On the scope the new Redfields are not the same as the old Denver built ones. They are owned by Leupold and are a lower priced scope. All I've heard so far has been good and with Leupold's backing I'm sure if you have issues with it they will be rectified.

I'm not a big fan of 50mm objectives. In a 3x9 I can see no practical advantages and lots of negatives.
 

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How so? I have always used a 3x9x50mm for hunting. I like the extra light the 50mm allows. This will primarily be a hunting rifle, but I want to be able to make the longer shots when needed. I am always learning though!
 

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It sounds like you are on the right track. Definitely don't mess with your trigger if you have no experience with trigger work. A good gun smith can tune yours. My smith used to charge$35.00- $50.00 for the job but that wa years ago. Even if you go with the Timney you may still need a smith to get the best bang for your buck out of The Timney. No fault of Timney. The stamped sear of the Axis isn't exctly a work of art and will more than likely need a little attention given to it. If you want full adjustability go the Timney route. I'm planning on using a Boyd's stock as well. It's in my preset price range. Sharp Shooter Supply also makes a nice stock for the Axis but it cost twice as much as a Boyd's stock and I'm unsure if they are avalible in LH. I'm gonna hold off on bedding the Boyd's stock until I see what the Axis will do with out it. I am gonna install pillers for sure. As far as optics go, to me it's a matter of personal preference and I'll leave it at that. Finding factory ammo is always fun. The only way to do it is to buy verying weights and types of ammo from different manfactures until you find what what your gun likes likes. I haven't had to that since forever because I relaod. But when I did have to go about it that way and I found a certain ammo that my gun liked, I would high tail it back to that store and buy every box in that lot number that I could afford. Good luck with your project. Hopefully we will both end up with very good shooting rifles when we are done.
 

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How so? I have always used a 3x9x50mm for hunting. I like the extra light the 50mm allows. This will primarily be a hunting rifle, but I want to be able to make the longer shots when needed. I am always learning though!
The negatives are increased weight, greater reflective signature, compromised cheek weld and greater sight axis to bore centerline spacing.

For a 3x9 scope or for that matter until you get beyond 16x the 50mm objectives offer almost no benefit, or at least none that can be decerned by the human eye. The "light gathering" deal is a myth. First off scopes dont gather light, rather they transmit what light is available through the lenses. Most optics defuse light which reduces efficency. This is where coatings come into play. Suffice it to say you don't get premium glass and coatings in cheap scopes.
 

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I'm doing the very same thing...

I'm doing the very same thing, probow. Got my stainless, lefty Tikka T3 Lite in .30-06 Springbreak. Putting the action into a Boyd's Featherweight Thumbhole stock. I like flashy, so the stock is a lefty Applejack red/gray laminate. Action will be pillar-bedded and 'glas-bedded once I get it and get it to a 'smith. That's from where real accuracy comes. The action has to have a solid platform so it can reproduce the shot time after time. There is a neat video on the Boyd's site showing a synthetic stock flexing and bending and bowing as the rifle is fired. It ain't pretty. Next to it is a video of a rifle being fired in a wooden stock. Much nicer. My synthetic will find its way right into the trash can once I get the laminated one and get the work done. I'll break-in the barrel with the plastic POJ still on it-- no reason to get bore solvent all over that high-shine stock. The high shine was an extra fifteen bucks. Might have been $25 extra. Don't remember. All I know is that I paid a premium for it over the standard finish. Not gonna ruin it prematurely...
 
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Discussion Starter #17
I am speaking with Apache Gun Works on a new bolt handle. I noticed once the scope was mounted, there is barely enough room to grab the handle to reload the gun. If I have to make more than one shot it will not happen fast with the factory bolt handle. I have a friend that sprays dura coat and he is going to spray my factory stock dessert tan. I like to have backups in case anything happens. Had a custom .257 Roberts that was given to me at a young age. I had to get rid of it due to the stock had spider web cracks in the cradle. Could not find a replacement for under $500 and that was having one made. Loved the rifle but it was turning into a $$ pit with the off the wall parts.
 
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