I picked up the new Savage 116FHSS the other day. I looked at everything from metal work, stock fit, action fitting, sling studs, etc, and it all looks well put together. I was a little bummed about how the muzzle crown looked. I think it should have been smoother the entire edge to edge, but I don’t see anything that looks cut crooked. I have worked with a lot of Savage rifles over the years, and they are just flat kicking the butt of the other makers. I started out as Remington 700 guy, and then transitioned to Brownings. Rifle to rifle the Savage has always been more accurate.
This rifle has the new Accu Stock 2 so I compared it to a new Remington BDL/CDS synthetic stock. The Accu Stock is 10 times the stock quality with an aluminum bedding system and much better molding and stiffness. The only thing the Remington has is a little better feel. I was frustrated with the Savage bolt removal process, but now that I have done it a few times it is pretty easy. Taking the action out of the stock was probably as difficult if not more so then a fully bedded rifle. While I had the action out of the stock I adjusted the Accu Trigger down from its factory 3# to 2.25#. I made some minor adjustments in addition to the provided set screw. After putting it back together I checked the locking lug engagement and it is acceptable.
I then start the cleaning process step by step:
- With my home brew powder solvent of 50-50 Kroil/GM Top Engine cleaner. I use a coated cleaning rod, bore guide, copper brushes, and clean the dirty solvent out with 100% cotton patches with a jag.
- I don’t just sit and scrub with the bore brush until it is wore out. I use five brush passes, clean patch, wet patch, dry patch and repeat if needed.
- After I clean the powder fouling out I use Sweets 7.62 with a nylon brush to get the copper out. Dry patches after letting the solvent soak a while to get the dirty Sweets out.
- I continue with Sweets until no more light blue shows on the first patch after soaking.
- One more time with the copper brush, solvent and dry patches.
- Finally I use JB Bore Past starting with blue “Cleaner” and finishing with red “Polish”.
- I wrap my cotton patches coated with paste around a nylon brush, and really work them back and forth for a long time.
- Then I clean the bore with solvent and lightly oil with Rem Oil.
The small bore of the 22cal takes more time and effort, but it has always been worth it for me.
I load up three casings with a heavy bullet and moderate powder charge. These are just for barrel break in. I will shoot them one at a time making sure each casing has the same number of firings. Luckily I can shoot within walking distance of the house, so I just go out and fire one round and fully clean the gun. This will take some time as I will do single rounds for 50 times, and then will do three rounds for 20 times. Every single time the barrel will be fully cleaned and polished before doing the same thing again.