Savage model 99 stock variations?


March 15, 2005, 03:25 PM
OK I am looking at model 99 Savage rifles and all of them chambered in 308 or 30-06 all seem to have this type of stock:

However, my Dad's Savage model 99 in 300 Savage caliber, has this different stock (note the front part is the biggest difference):

Did they only make the 300 savage ones with that style? I like it better but I can't find any Savage model 99 with that style wood on the front, under the barrel.

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March 15, 2005, 04:28 PM
There are any number of variations on the S-99 stock. After all, the rifle had a production run that spanned the bulk of the 20th Century. :)

The schnabel fore-end (the one on your dad's rifle) is an older variant. As best I can tell, the 308, 7mm08, 243, and 358 chamberings of the S-99 won't have the older schnabel forearm since the calibers themselves post-date the production cut-over. Having said that, as far as I know you should be able to retrofit a schnabel forearm onto a later S-99.

As an aside - some early S-99s have a straight-grip buttstock instead of the more common pistol grip. Moreover, some pistol grip stocks are without checkering (like the ones in your top picture - I had a 'C' model like that), most will have hand-cut checkering, and those made after 1961 (after S/N 1,XXX,XXX) are likely to have pressed checkering instead of cut checkering.

March 15, 2005, 04:32 PM
Does anybody make aftermarket forends for them, so if I wanted to I could get a newer 99 in 308 and put a schnabel forend stock on it? I don't want to buy 2 guns just so I can make 1 gun I like :P

I really like that schnabel style forent...

March 15, 2005, 04:44 PM
It may not be a schnabel, but if not it could certainly be made into one easily enough....

BTW - the serial numbers of the S-99 are consecutive. You can date one rifle against another easily enough just by examining the S/N....

March 15, 2005, 04:56 PM
Does anyone know of a good guide to serial numbers and what features they have?

What I would like is to find a 99 savage chambered in 308 but that has the rotary breech. I heard the latest versions have a removable box breech. I want the ROTARY breech but in 308. Did such a gun exist?

March 15, 2005, 05:34 PM
Yes - I bought an example of that just last weekend, in fact. Anything under a certain serial number range will have a rotary magazine. For example, I bought 1108XXX in 308 and it had a rotary magazine, and at the same gunshow I saw 308 rotary magazine versions ranging from 800XXX up to 111XXXX.

March 15, 2005, 06:09 PM
Hey, there is a BIG gun show coming up locally, I forgot about that...

I know this is kind of vague, but can anyone give me advice on how to pick a good Savage 99? If I find one at a gun show I want to know what common problems to look for so I know if I'm getting one that is in good shape and will work well.

March 15, 2005, 07:27 PM
First off - expect to pay at least $500 for any sample worth owning. Last weekend, I took a gamble on a $400 late-model Featherweight with a heavily leaded bore and got screwed - turned out to have lots of pitting under the leading. :banghead: Bring a bore light or mini-maglite and be sure to eyeball the barrel. The bolts don't readily come out, so you'll have to illuminate the bore from the breech and look down the barrel from the muzzle.

The most prized models in most folks eyes are the earliest. Look for a low serial number and a trigger-guard mounted safety as clues. I've heard that the serial numbers hit the one million mark right around 1961. Supposedly, there was a gradual decline in build quality after that point, but I've had several above and below that mark and could not detect a difference.

I prefer the Featherweight models (which have the same action but a lighter barrel), but they're harder to find in 308 and when you do they'll likely be newer production (tang-mounted safety, serial number over one million.) Frankly, I'd love to build a stable with one in 243, one in 7mm/08, one in 308, and one in 358. However, at their current prices it'd be far cheaper to just buy a new Savage boltie in each caliber and be done with it.

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