Savage released the Axis II rifle at SHOT Show this year. The original Axis was introduced by Savage as a bargain market entry level rifle, and has success in that competitive market. Now Savage takes the Axis II and moves beyond the basics to provide a very nice mid-level rifle.
The Axis II includes the famous Savage Accu-Trigger, and will come in combination with the Weaver Kaspa 3-9x40mm scope (a $150 MSRP value) that will be mounted and bore-sighted at the factory. In other features the Axis II will match the Axis, but the shooter is getting a lot in the two new additions.
The Accu-Trigger revolutionized the bolt action rifle market back in 2002, and is still considered by some to be one of the finest stock triggers on the market. The trigger has a trigger bar, called the Accu-Release, that extends in front of the actual trigger.
The Accu-Release sitting at the rest position rests in of the sear and prevents accidental discharge by jarring or dropping. When depressed, the Accu-Release drops out of the sear’s path, allowing the sear to move fully backward when released by the full trigger pull. The rifle can then fire as designed.
In addition, the Accu-Release provides the shooter a feel for the trigger pull before even engaging the actual trigger. With this set up the shooter has a much greater opportunity for a consistent trigger pull, thereby removing one of the greatest threats to shooting accuracy – shooter error by trigger jerking. The result is a trigger pull without creep, and a very crisp trigger break.
Each Savage barrel has a consistent bore diameter and rifling due to Savage’s use of button-method of barrel making. In the button pulled method the lands and grooves are made at the same time when the “button” is pulled through the barrel, avoiding any inconsistency that could occur from individual rifling done with other methods. Savage claims this method helps shots maintain accuracy without “walking” the point of impact from the first shot to follow-up shots caused by the barrel warming.
All Savage bolts come with a floating bolt head. The Savage bolt is not a solid piece of steel like many other rifle manufacturers, but actually has a second, sliding bolt head piece that is designed to allow minute amounts of movement. This allows the bolt face to always be in complete contact with the cartridge, regardless of jarring and vibrations that can occur with loading or handling.
Finally, all Savage rifles have headspace control to ensure cartridge seating is at the ideal position for bullet spin, stabilization and accuracy. Placing a minimum headspace gauge into the chamber, and locking the bolt, the barrel is then screwed into the receiver until there is no play. Once in position, the lock nut is secured against the receiver with the recoil lug in between. This provides exact measurement for minimum headspace with zero tolerance.
Here is a snapshot of the Savage Axis II:
- Stock – Synthetic matte black stock with textured grip and (2) sling mounts
- Trigger – Accu-Trigger
- Magazine – Detachable
- Capacity – 4+1
- Overall Length – 43.875”
- Barrel Length – 22”
- Weight – 6.5 lbs. unloaded
- Twist – RH
- Twist Rate – 1:10 (slightly less for the smaller calibers)
- Calibers – .22-250; .223; .243; .25-06; .30-06; .308; 7mm-08
- MSRP – $489.00
I have owned a Savage Model 111 for 13 years, and even without the Accu-Trigger I have found the rifle to be very accurate and dependable for an entry level combination rifle. I have fired the Accu-Trigger at SHOT Show, and tested it at gun stores. I find it to be a remarkable advancement over many standard triggers due to its ability to assist the shooter in making a definitive trigger pull without creep or jerking. The new Axis II may have just landed on my short list of purchases.
The Axis II will contend with other mid-level rifles like the Remington 783 or even low-end Model 700’s, the Browning A-Bolt, or the Mossberg ATR. The Axis II will also come in a Youth version, and a Muddy Girl version in camouflage pink stock.