Willing to spend up to $2000 on a .223 bolt rifle.. recommendations?


PDA






cpirtle
December 30, 2012, 04:07 PM
I'm thinking about buying a nice .223 Bolt rifle because I have thousands of rounds of 223 and would like a nice bolt rifle to supplement my AR's.

I'm not a bench rest shooter but do like to shoot for accuracy from time to time. Whatever I buy will get a 4x glass and be used for a combination of plinking, varmint/yote hunting and some paper punching.

I'm not opposed to spending under $1,000 but I'd like a more refined rifle with a short/quick action if possible.

So what are your recommendations?

Sako, Cooper, Annie, Weatherby, CZ, Remington, Tikka, Steyr?

Only one I'll rule out in advance is Kimber.

If you enjoyed reading about "Willing to spend up to $2000 on a .223 bolt rifle.. recommendations?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Quiet
December 30, 2012, 04:15 PM
I like and recommend the...
Ceska Zbrojovka CZ-527 Carbine
Mossberg MVP

R.W.Dale
December 30, 2012, 04:19 PM
Honestly there's not a production non semiautomatic 223 besides a no1 ruger I could justify paying that much for. There's just too many good $600 or less options that will do the job just fine.

My advice buy a $600 rifle and make the difference up with high end optics




posted via that mobile app with the sig lines everyone complains about

R H Clark
December 30, 2012, 04:22 PM
Get the Cooper but you won't realize it's full potential with a 4X scope.

hawkeye10
December 30, 2012, 04:31 PM
Buying a .223 bolt rifle and putting a 4 power is a waste of money. It's your money and of coarse you can spend it how you like. I think you can spend way less than $1000 and get a very nice rifle. I have a Savage M12 in .223 with a Bushnell Elite 4200 scope and have about $1100 or $1200 in it. Of coarse others will have a different opinion, this is just mine. Don

http://i731.photobucket.com/albums/ww316/K-FRAMEMAN/101_0063.jpg

stubbicatt
December 30, 2012, 04:53 PM
There are lots of good suggestions here. For a "tool" type rifle, one which you purchase without a mind to the aesthetics of the rifle, any will do. If you like a really beautiful piece, get one of the Coopers. Some of the CZ 527 are really nice too, but unless you see it in person it is difficult to get a feel for the condition of the wood.

cpirtle
December 30, 2012, 06:00 PM
Good points everyone.

I never said I needed to shoot to the potential of the rifle, but I do like owning refined firearms. I'm open to a variety of optics but like a 4x because I generally shoot in the 100 yard or less range and already have a match AR with high-X glass that I would probably shoot instead. With whatever I get this time if I want to wring out all of it's potential down the road I can.

I love my Remington 700 sps aac and would have no problem with another 700, just looking for a little classier variety this go-round. I'd really like a Ruger #1 tropical but they don't make it in in 223..

Don't get me wrong, I'm not ruling out the less expensive rifles, just want to explore the higher end ones before I pop on something.

Allen in MT
December 30, 2012, 06:12 PM
I hove the the CZ 527 Varmint .223 and will be topping it with the Vortex Vipor 5-15x44 tactical and should have a total of about $1100.00 in it

wriggly
December 30, 2012, 06:28 PM
Help me out here....whats the draw? I own AR's, and I shoot cheap .223 out of them when I cannot get the 5.56 fodder I prefer, but what exactly is the attraction in having a bolt gun for .223 that won't handle 5.56?

Don't get me wrong, I am not being skeptical, I own bolt guns in some calibers that some might frown on, I am just looking to hear from folks that own em on what the skinny is on them.

By the way, I do not reload.

R.W.Dale
December 30, 2012, 06:29 PM
You mention a no1 tropical in 223.

Ruger doesn't make one but I think they do make a 77 tropical in 223 for a specialist outfitter.




posted via that mobile app with the sig lines everyone complains about

1858
December 30, 2012, 06:47 PM
Only one I'll rule out in advance is Kimber.


Don't get me wrong, I'm not ruling out the less expensive rifles, just want to explore the higher end ones before I pop on something.


Out of interest, why not Kimber? I wouldn't buy a Kimber in .223 Rem because I'd want at least a 1:8 twist barrel for 80gr bullets and they only offer 1:9 ... but I'm curious as to your thoughts.

AABEN
December 30, 2012, 07:07 PM
Buy your self a Savage and buy your self some reloading supply's so you can do more shooting. GOOD LUCK

aka108
December 30, 2012, 07:28 PM
I really like the CZ rifles and for the money you can't get better. For optics, look up "Clearidgeoptics". The scopes are Japanese built and the quality is excellent.

dubbleA
December 30, 2012, 07:56 PM
The OP stated he didnt mind spending money on a nicer refined rifle and yet I see Savage and Mossberg reccomended, that makes me chuckle but that's just me.:D Not saying they are bad rifles but not in the same catergory.

You wont be disappointed in choosing a Copper, though they are twisted for the lighter weight varmint bullet weights and not heavies. That could be a determining factor if wanting to run AR ammo through it.

Damon555
December 30, 2012, 11:07 PM
You can get a mighty fine Cooper for that kind of money...If you have that much to spend on the gun then you can afford good glass too...A 4x will not allow you to realize the full potential of your rifle for target shooting.....and don't be like some of these guys who spend $1500 on a rifle setup and then put a $100 dollar scope on it.

mjw930
December 30, 2012, 11:48 PM
After going through all the popular .223 Varmint style files available I liked the Tikka T3 (Hunter or Varmint) or a CZ 527 Varmint as a more refined, multi purpose weapon.

I ended up going with the Savage 12 BTCSS because I love the looks and the feel and know it will be a tack driver but it will be a 95% bench rifle punching paper so my application is different than yours.

The Weatherby Vanguard S2 Varmint is a good looking and handling gun but it's not as refined as the Tikka or CZ IMHO.

There's always the SAKO 85 Varmint Laminated Stainless at $2000 MSRP if you really want to spend the coin :)

greyling22
December 30, 2012, 11:59 PM
I've found that tikka and browning have the smoothest and quickest production throws that I have handled. 3 lugs for the win!

a blueprinted 700 actually had the smoothest throw I've used, though I hear good things about custom actions.

for a light and handy carbine, nothing I have seen beats a cz 527, though ruger makes some nicely shaped weapons. too bad they don't shoot quite up to par. (if your ruger shoots great, huzzah! but I don't know anybody who will categorically rank the ruger 77 as a particularly accurate rifle)

ColtPythonElite
December 31, 2012, 12:13 AM
700 bucks or so will get you a 30+ year old Remington 700 BDL Varmint Special....A beautiful, classic that is generally extremely accurate.

R.W.Dale
December 31, 2012, 12:18 AM
for a light and handy carbine, nothing I have seen beats a cz 527, though ruger makes some nicely shaped weapons. too bad they don't shoot quite up to par. (if your ruger shoots great, huzzah! but I don't know anybody who will categorically rank the ruger 77 as a particularly accurate rifle)



An oft repeated misconceptions perpuated by folks who haven't actually shot ruger 77's for accuracy.

I have the records and averages where my rugers shot just as well or better as my 527 Kevlar varmint did.



posted via that mobile app with the sig lines everyone complains about

ColtPythonElite
December 31, 2012, 12:26 AM
I use a Ruger MKII Target in .22-250 that is a 100 yd, all the shots touching gun.

jehu
December 31, 2012, 08:40 AM
+1000 for the Sako SS Varmint which go for more like $1500 and have a 1-8 twist. Nothing wrong with the Cooper but the Sako is just as good and are stainless. I have a Sako 85 SS varmint in 22-250 and it is super accurate with the Hornady 55gr Ballistic Tips.

Double Naught Spy
December 31, 2012, 09:16 AM
I think that like Hawkeye, I would go with a Savage with on of their Accutrigger trigger groups and then put the rest of the money into an outstanding scope and some other accessories.

Art Eatman
December 31, 2012, 11:11 AM
About a dozen years back I bought a Ruger 77 Mk II light sporter in .223. It was reliably half-MOA, even with the tort-liability trigger. Replacing it with a Timney merely made it easier. I put a Leupold 3x9x40 on it; one of the older Vari-X II types.

I've done quite nicely on prairie dogs to 300 yards.

chad1043
December 31, 2012, 12:26 PM
Go to www.snipercentral.com... click on the sniper store. They make custom rifles based off the Remington 700 and Howa platforms. You can deck it out the way you want it... You can easily spend around $2000...

BigG
December 31, 2012, 12:59 PM
Steyr-Mannlicher is hard to beat.

jim243
December 31, 2012, 01:05 PM
I think that like Hawkeye, I would go with a Savage with on of their Accutrigger trigger groups and then put the rest of the money into an outstanding scope and some other accessories.


Same here.
Jim

Mackillan
December 31, 2012, 01:24 PM
Does cooper make a repeater in .223? I vote for sako either 85ls or 85 vls

788Ham
December 31, 2012, 01:29 PM
I take a serious look at the Savage rifle, then as an earlier poster mentioned, put a Timney trigger on it. If a scope out to 100 yards. is all you're looking for, look at one of the Whitetail scopes on Midway, 6X24X50mm, truly a nice, clear scope for the money, $129.00. I have this scope on my Rem. 788, have taken P-dogs out to 300 yards with no effort.

LTR50flint
December 31, 2012, 02:21 PM
I bought a K77RFP .223 with a Simons 4x12x44 for my wife's woodchuck, crow coyote rifle, many years ago, she did not like the long bolt throw of the 22-250.
I prefer my K77RFP 22-250 -NIKON 6455 4.5 X14X40 SILVER SHADOW, but if you want a .223 as companion, try the K77RFP .223 the wife's is more shiny stainless, I like the matte stainless for predator rifle, new Ruger are matte.
If like the Ruger laminated try the predator with two stage adjustable trigger, save you some future money on a timney.
Hope you having good luck finding ammo; I have Cabelas backorder in for Hornady 55gr sp since 12/24.

Cee Zee
December 31, 2012, 02:29 PM
Savage is by far the best choice you could make. Take a look at how they have dominated (not just competed - they have dominated) F Class and F/TR shooting with their rifles. And despite what some say, you can get a better rifle for $1200-$1400.

I don't see the point of a 4X scope on a rifle like that though. They are long distance shooters and I would think that a person would want at least a 9X.

I have a 12 LRPV. It has the target action and trigger (a huge improvement above their normal triggers) and it's a single shot which makes it much stiffer and therefore much more accurate. If I told you how that rifle shoots I'd be called a liar so many times it wouldn't be funny but I don't lie. It will shoot 2" groups at 500 yards. You can't do that with your basic Savage rifle. I have one of those too. It's nowhere near as accurate as the 12.

The rifles you mentioned are all fine rifles. I just won't believe they are superior to what Savage is building until I see them producing the kind of results I see Team Savage producing. Here's a rundown of their exploits. Remember these are stock rifles they are shooting and they are shooting against custom built rifles - and winning by a big margin. I know too many will see this as a personal challenge because it isn't the rifle they bought but Savage really does make exceptional rifles and they don't have the import taxes of the Euro rifles. Remember this is a description of just one tournament. They have been doing this for several years now. They are doing what many people think is impossible. I can almost guarantee someone will say it isn't possible here. But it is possible and it is truel

http://www.savagearms.com/news/article/?id=3ij567qnL

When I see "any" off the rack rifle dominate custom rifles like this I will change my mind about the rifles made by that company. And trust me, I've seen other types of rifles beat the same kind of Savage rifles (like rimfires against rimfires - a Sako rimfire has beat the pants off my Savage .22 many times and my Savage .22 shoots very well for what it is). But in the class of rifles you're looking at Savage is at the top. Spend about $1300 on a rifle and the rest on glass. You won't regret it unless you have the bad luck to get that lemon that's always out there.

Keep in mind though that these are target / varmint style guns. They are heavy duty. And the bolt is a long pull because it is a push design. I like that myself because I can toss a round in and have it feed perfectly without thinking about it. Others don't like it. To each his own on that.

Abel
December 31, 2012, 09:10 PM
If your budget is 2K, the Savage is not even in the top three. Kimber or Cooper.

chad1043
December 31, 2012, 09:19 PM
Here's that link: http://www.snipercentral.com/scriflepackages.phtml

Sorry, I couldn't post it earlier, I was at work and that site is blocked.

hawmanai
January 1, 2013, 12:01 AM
Been drooling over a Kimber for a long time.

bushmaster1313
January 1, 2013, 12:31 AM
There is a Cooper on Gunbroker that can be had for $1300

nastynatesfish
January 1, 2013, 12:38 AM
This one.
http://i1072.photobucket.com/albums/w369/tabascoman79/D95DF9BC-19CF-4326-90E3-04299EE94889-22116-000010570DC02065.jpg

Abel
January 1, 2013, 09:18 AM
Maybe I missed the part where the OP said that he wanted a 17lb range toy. You did say that you want to actually hunt with this, right?

chad1043
January 1, 2013, 09:24 AM
OP said "I'm not a bench rest shooter but do like to shoot for accuracy from time to time. Whatever I buy will get a 4x glass and be used for a combination of plinking, varmint/yote hunting and some paper punching."

Vartarg
January 1, 2013, 10:22 AM
I strongly recommend the Savage 12 FT/R in .223......mine shoots tiny bugholes with 80gr SMKs and TAC powder. It doesn't come up to the $2000 level, but you could put the difference in more X glass.

http://s1204.beta.photobucket.com/user/Vartarg/media/file-5.jpg.html

1858
January 1, 2013, 12:57 PM
I think the Savage crowd missed the part where the OP stated ....

I'm not opposed to spending under $1,000 but I'd like a more refined rifle ....

I own a Savage rifle and there's NOTHING refined about them. Those recommending Cooper, CZ, Sako, Kimber, etc. are on the right track.

chad1043
January 1, 2013, 12:59 PM
Nothing except their accuracy out of the box.

1858
January 1, 2013, 01:06 PM
Nothing except their accuracy out of the box.


There was nothing refined about the "accuracy out of the box" of my Weather Warrior. I had to swap the barrel to a McGowen to even approach decent accuracy.

Storz
January 1, 2013, 01:09 PM
Tube gun

http://www.hunt101.com/data/500/medium/16471IMGA0521B.JPG

chad1043
January 1, 2013, 01:17 PM
Refer to post 30. One man's negative post about one rifle does not make the whole company a unrefined inaccurate rifle maker. There are about 98% satisfied Savage owners on here. My Savage 93BTVS (22 mag) is a beautiful and accurate rifle. The fifth shot was me checking to make sure I was hitting the target. I aimed one grid lower.

http://imageshack.us/a/img217/9637/image12262011102422.jpg

1858
January 1, 2013, 01:24 PM
One man's negative post about one rifle does not make the whole company a unrefined inaccurate rifle maker.

I don't drink the Savage Kool-Aid and don't consider any Savage to be refined regardless of how accurate they are. As for that F-Class thread, I shoot F-Class and can see the woods for the trees. If you simply look at something for what it appears to be on the surface, either by choice or because you're incapable of doing otherwise, then so be it. Maybe the OP has better depth perception.

brian923
January 1, 2013, 03:24 PM
I like the taste of savage-aid. my unrefined savage 10 coming in around 1100 $ with glass will keep up with the overpriced yet pretty kimbers and coopers. I like savage because it allows a poor pesent like me to be able to shoot tiny little groups. paper targets and little varmints dont give a darn about what my rifle looks like. dont get me wrong, I love the look of a beautiful wood stock and a perfectly sculpted action. I just dont see why guys hate ugly accurate rifles cause they aint pretty... one day ill own a beautiful piece of tiger stripe or birdseye maple for my sexy custom mauser... but ill always love my mcmillian stocked savage!

ms6852
January 1, 2013, 06:01 PM
Honestly there's not a production non semiautomatic 223 besides a no1 ruger I could justify paying that much for. There's just too many good $600 or less options that will do the job just fine.

My advice buy a $600 rifle and make the difference up with high end optics




posted via that mobile app with the sig lines everyone complains about
+1, also you may want to buy better ammo as the bulk 5.56 ammo won't be that accurate if you want pinpoint accuracy instead of deer or body moa.

Cee Zee
January 2, 2013, 11:54 PM
Despite the nay sayers, Savage has a "proven" record of extremely good accuracy for a rifle in any price range. Sorry your rifles aren't "refined" but mine certainly is. Savage has made incredible progress in the last decade with their target action rifles. I'm still surprised when I see people refuse to accept that a rifle that has demonstrated accuracy is somehow inferior to rifles that don't even bother to compete in the same league. F/TR and F Class are significant shooting disciplines and Savage is dominating those categories. I'm not talking just winning. They are dominating. And they are doing it against custom built rifles. That is extraordinary and I can see how people have trouble believing it. But I bought one and it shoots fabulous. My shooting is limited to 500 yards currently but these rifles can do 1000 yards effectively.

I'm not here to argue about the issue. There's nothing to argue about. Savage is better than any of the Coopers, Kimbers, or Remingtons that most people would traditionally rank as higher quality. I can only assume they haven't seen how a Savage made in the last 7-8 years really shoots. Not all of them are great of course. Rifles just don't work that way. You get a bad one from time to time. But mine certainly shoots extremely accurate. For me to shoot 2" groups at 500 yards is a testament to just how good these rifles are. And if you think I'm the only one maybe you should check out the Savage Shooters forum unless you're a person who just refuses to accept that times change. I've seen lots of press about how a certain group of shooters just refuse to accept what Savage has done because they think their 1990 Savage is the same as the new ones. I have a 1992 Savage 110. It's completely outclassed by my Savage 12 LRPV. It's not even close.

I invite anyone with an open mind to visit this web page (http://www.gunblast.com/Savage-12F.htm) where they will find a description of some of the things Savage has accomplished. In the article you will find this quote that seemed to be right in line with my experience. Then consider that this article was written in 2007 and since that time Savage has continued to improved their products. They don't even mention the target Accu-Trigger and action in the article and that alone is a huge improvement over the previous action. Also keep in mind that this person didn't even work up the right load for his rifle. We all know that having the right ammo can mean a world of difference. And this is not a Savage based web site either. They review all sorts of firearms. The proof is out there. You just have to look. It's the reason I bought my Savage in the first place.

" Around here, to test the long-range capability of the Savage Model 12 F-Class, I had to leave my shooting range and go back through the woods to a field known as Sugar Holler. There, I can get a bit over 400 yards, with a good backstop. The shooting platform has to be improvised, as prone is not an option with the terrain and vegetation. Now understand that a better shooter could get better results, but I was well-satisfied with the two and one-quarter inch group using the Hornady A-Max bullets at 400 yards. That is half-minute-of-angle groups, and the Savage could repeat that performance all day long."

bayjoe
January 3, 2013, 12:13 AM
Cristensen arms
You got the cash, these rifles are awesome!

nyresq
January 3, 2013, 03:09 AM
If you want beautiful, get a lightly used kimber super america (that would be my choice) with a nice mid price scope. If you arent concerned about looks, a remington pss or 5R and spend the rest of the budget on good glass.

highbrow
January 3, 2013, 06:52 PM
Jense Precision if you want top end. But you will need more than 2k.

I am happy with my $275 Stevens for plinking and coyotes.

Walkalong
January 3, 2013, 06:59 PM
Of your choices, I would probably go with a Cooper if I was going to spend that kind of money on a bolt gun, with Sako a close second.

gscrasher
January 4, 2013, 05:53 PM
I haven't seen this mentioned yet, but:
If your ammo supply for AR-type rifles is actually mil-spec 5.56 mm rather than .223 Rem, you should be aware that SAAMI has stated that one should not use 5.56 mm in .223 chambered rifles.

I'm not an expert on this issue, so just to be safe, you may wish to do a little research on it.

Maybe some of the guys here can clarify this.

cpirtle
January 21, 2013, 06:53 PM
I appreciate everyone's response and just figured I'd update on my purchase.

I had today off work so I hit every gun shop within a 90 minute radius looking for a variety to get my hands on. I wanted something different than what I currently own or have owned in the past, unless it was just the best choice.

Along the way I snagged my holy grail revolver, a snub nose nickel plated Model 15 in pristine condition. They are always beat and this one is LNIB.. but I digress..

Ultimately I ended up going with the Tikka T3 Tactical. I saved my favorite shop for last and all they had was a CZ and the Tikka. I have a good history with these guys so they gave me a great cash price and I was out the door with the Tikka.

I'm not going to mount a telescope on it but have decided this rifle deserves a nice Leupold or Zeiss, so off to do some research..

nyresq
January 21, 2013, 07:09 PM
How much is left in your budget for glass and mounts?

cpirtle
January 21, 2013, 07:41 PM
$400-$800

I want to keep it sleek and easy to carry, so I'm thinking keeping it in the 40mm range.

nyresq
January 21, 2013, 08:03 PM
In that range the 3-12x 42mm Nikon with the 223 BDC is a nice size to keep it slim and a good set of mounts will keep you at the lower end of your budget so you van still afford to shoot it...

For the price, Nikon makes some decent scopes. Leupold scopes in the $400-$600 range arent what they used to be.

Or look for a used Nightforce which would put you at the upper end of your range.

cpirtle
January 21, 2013, 09:14 PM
In that range the 3-12x 42mm Nikon with the 223 BDC is a nice size to keep it slim

That's what I have on my Varmint AR, nice scope for the money. I'm partial to Nikon so they are my fallback when all else fails. I have a Zeiss Conquest on my 700 AAC build, and it's been nice as well.

joustin
January 21, 2013, 09:38 PM
I have been thinking about selling or trading my AR for a Mossberg MVP they feel solid and use AR mags.

Sent from my DROID RAZR using Tapatalk 2

jehu
January 22, 2013, 11:09 AM
Pay attention to post #52! Military 5.56 has a longer OAL(overall length) than 223Rem. and should not be used in rifles cambered for 223Rem.. I would think you would want to use good premium ammo in a nice bolt action gun to get the best accuracy anyway and not FMJ.:cool:

mnhntr
January 22, 2013, 01:34 PM
I simply do not understand why people would pay thousands for a rifle when a $600 Savage will shoot just a good for half as much.

cpirtle
January 22, 2013, 02:04 PM
I simply do not understand why people would pay thousands for a rifle when a $600 Savage will shoot just a good for half as much.

I do.

valnar
January 22, 2013, 02:32 PM
If you have the money for a Sako, I don't understand why anything else is in the running? :confused:

ALL my bolt actions would be Sako (or better) if money was no object. But since it is, I have a Tikka and some CZ's.

Edit: I saw you picked up the Tikka T3 Tactical. Excellent choice.

cpirtle
January 22, 2013, 05:14 PM
If you have the money for a Sako, I don't understand why anything else is in the running?

ALL my bolt actions would be Sako (or better) if money was no object. But since it is, I have a Tikka and some CZ's.

Edit: I saw you picked up the Tikka T3 Tactical. Excellent choice.

I saw your edit and still thought I'd reply..

I'm to the point where Ive owned a lot of different firearms, have exactly what I want to own and don't buy as many as I used to, so the hunt is half the fun :)

Now I'm having fun shopping for the optic to mount on this fine specimen. Leaning heavily toward the Nikon Monarch X because I found a smoking deal on one. Still $850 but I've always had great luck with Nikon..

RPRNY
January 22, 2013, 05:22 PM
Quote:
I simply do not understand why people would pay thousands for a rifle when a $600 Savage will shoot just a good for half as much.
I do.

Like :)

cpirtle
January 23, 2013, 04:17 PM
Just figured I'd round off the conversation with an update.

I just couldn't bear to mount a giant scope on this rifle, I have others that meet that need.

Had it narrowed down to the Zeiss Conquest Duralyt 2-8 x 42 or Trijicon Accupoint 3-9 x 40.

On my lunch break I was able to go play with the Accupoint at a local "near-list-price" shop and decided to go that route.

It'll be here tomorrow along with a DNZ single piece mount.

45crittergitter
January 25, 2013, 06:37 PM
+1 for Cooper, Sako & Tikka. I have personal experience with Cooper & Tikka.

If you enjoyed reading about "Willing to spend up to $2000 on a .223 bolt rifle.. recommendations?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!