Savage or howa?


July 6, 2011, 12:15 AM
I have been looking into and researching for a new/used rifle. On a budget..Anyway I was really looking into savages. I went a shop today and after getting chewed on a bit because I was asking about a 25-06 over a 243. (rarity of the round) The guy showed me a howa 1500....Liked the feel but haven't found much on them as far as info/reviews. Anyone have time with these? How upgradeable are they? Looking for some input. thanks

If you enjoyed reading about "Savage or howa?" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
July 6, 2011, 12:43 AM
Basically you looking at Savage and Weatherby Vanguard which is using Howa action, on the budget get yourself Stevens 200 in long action, they run about 250 bucks new.

July 6, 2011, 12:53 AM
Might be a stupid question..BUT..are the stevens upgradeable?

July 6, 2011, 01:47 AM
yes, its same action as Savage 111, 110 or 11, you can get same stock as Savage and barrel nut is the same so you can get barrel upgraded, then you can upgrade trigger or adjust yours to lighter pull. Stevens doesn't have accutriger they are using triggers what Savage used like 5 - 6years ago. Why long action, in case you decide to switch barrels having long action is more convenient, you won't have problems shooting short action calibers and always can go back to long ones, with short action you'll be stuck with short.

July 6, 2011, 07:12 AM
I think the Howa is the better rifle. If interested in a Savage I'd save a little money and buy either the Marlin XL-7 or the Stevens 200. The Marlin gives you all the features of the Savage, but at a much cheaper price.

July 6, 2011, 07:20 AM
Very happy owner of a heavy barreled howa varmint .308 here. I think dollar for dollar Howa is hard to beat.

July 6, 2011, 07:40 AM
I've been in the Savage camp for years, mainly due to their ease of rebarrelling and the stock choices available. However, this spring I purchased a Howa varminter in 204. Out of the box, the edge gos to the Howa in terms of fit and finish. On the range, it performs perfectly. Smooth bolt travel, easy lock up, and a pleasure to shoot. A few trigger adjustments and it was done. I think the Howa will last me many years. While I'm not swapping my Savages it has given me another budget rifle option when contemplating a new caliber.

July 6, 2011, 07:57 AM
As much as i like both choices and seeing the prices on used rifles I would spend my money on a new T/C Venture. They chamber all the common calibers and then some.

July 6, 2011, 10:31 AM
Go with Savage. Excellent out of box accuracy and customer service

July 6, 2011, 11:28 AM
Howa, could be nice, but the one I tried 1500 model in thumbhole stock shot worse then either of my Savage rifles. Savage is also not all that perfect, but with barrel nut its easy to upgrade without going through gunsmith. Thompson Center, I would put it above both, I didn't try Venture, but I had ICON, it was amazing out of the box 0.25" - 0.3" shooter.

July 6, 2011, 12:31 PM
It's hard to beat the accutrigger on a Savage. You can live with just about everything that may not be exactly to your tastes, but a bad trigger takes the joy out of shooting.

July 6, 2011, 02:27 PM
I have 2 Howa rifles, a 30.06 and a .243. Both of these rifles shoot
extremely well. The .243 is extremely accurate. Pick up a copy of this
month's Shooting Times. They compare six different budget rifles. The
article might be of some interest to you.

July 6, 2011, 10:28 PM
I will have to look around for that magazine...thanks. Keep the reviews coming and suggestions

July 6, 2011, 11:31 PM
Also see this month's Field and Stream. Kudos for Savage accuracy, though I own neither brand.

July 6, 2011, 11:32 PM
Interesting question. I had a Savage 12VLP (bull barrel, laminated stock) in .223 and liked it, but sold it out of boredom. After missing a target rifle long enough, I rolled the dice on a Howa 1500 Varminter Supreme (again, bull barrel etc.) and it has thus far proven to be a more accurate rifle. Perhaps I am a better shot now, or my reloads are a bit more precisely made, but I never grouped with the Savage as I am now. Also, I won't sell this rifle.

260 Rem
July 8, 2011, 08:57 PM
If you think you might want to change barrels later on, then Savage is the way to go.

July 8, 2011, 09:46 PM
I had a Howa .223.

The Weatherby uses a much better barrel and probably a better bolt but it is the same action.

The Howa is easily upgradeable. Anything that is available for the Weatherby works on the Howa. Stock upgrades, triggers (dropped a Timney into mine), rings, everything.

My only complaint with the Howa is it was a bit heavy. Mine shot great but did have a 1 in 12 twist.

The only Savage I have is a .17HMR and it is excellent. But not in the class of the bigger rifles. Savages have a reputation for being some of the cheapest great shooters you can get.

Do your homework on the Howa, you should be able to pick one up for $350. Check CDNN.

July 9, 2011, 12:04 PM
Do your homework on the Howa, you should be able to pick one up for $350.

With a little looking, you might be able to beat this price. I bought a nib Weatherby Vanguard, chambered in .257 Weatherby Magnum, a couple of months or so ago from my lgs and paid $299.99 for it (plus tax, of course).

July 9, 2011, 11:29 PM
You knew someone had to do it, so it might as well be me. How about a Tikka T3, made by Sako and under $500.

July 9, 2011, 11:59 PM
Tikka's are nice. Have seen like-new-used ones for around $400.

July 10, 2011, 12:58 AM
What is it with people sweating Savage's nuts these days? I mean, I like the company,
and I own a couple, but, to me, they're budget arms. Good ones, to be sure, but budget arms still. But, to hear some people talk, they're better than Remington or Browning...what gives?

July 10, 2011, 11:13 AM
Both companies produce good rifles, but you can do more with the Savage if you are into DIY. With a few tools, you can swap your own barrels with the Savage and get both the 25/06 and 243 caliber in the same rifle.

Howas do have some aftermarket support, BUT the big drawback is that Howa's have metric threads and many gunsmiths do not work with metric.

I wouldn't have an issue with buying a Howa, but I do like to tinker with my guns, so Savage is the only choice for me.

BTW, where are you finding Stevens 200 for $250? I heard Academy had some on clearance for $189, but I live in PA and we do not have Academy's in my state.

July 10, 2011, 11:35 AM
Having owned both guns, I'll say they are both excellent value guns. But in the end, I find I am always shooting my savage more than my Howa, it seems to fit me better.

Point is, buy the rifle the when you hold it, it feels like an extension of yourself.

July 28, 2011, 10:34 PM
The Savage long action is loooooong! You will discover that when you try to mount a scope on that 25-06 and the rings are butted up against both bells with no room to adjust for eye relief. Most newer scopes just don't fit!

Howa (Japan) has been making quality rifles for about 20 years. In the early 1990s I went to a gun show in Salt Lake City with a gunsmith friend. Stan knew guns - he used to work with P.O. Ackley.

We came across a used Howa .223 rifle and he asked. . ."what is that - I never heard of a Howa!" But the price was good and he couldn't resist buying it.

A few days later he called me and was all excited about his Howa purchase. He had completely disassembled it and was amazed at the quality and finish of all parts - inside and out.

He scoped it and was equally impressed with the accuracy.

Howa made rifles for Ithaca, Mossberg and now Weatherby.

Just my opinion, but I would go for a Howa over a Savage.

July 29, 2011, 12:48 PM
Howa (Japan) has been making quality rifles for about 20 years.

I read that the Howa company was established in 1967. I don't know if that's when they first started manufacturing firearms or not but I do know that, as early as 1981, they were making rifles for Smith & Wesson (the model 1500). Everything that I know about Howa is that their rifles have always been of good quality.

If you enjoyed reading about "Savage or howa?" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!