Please help ne diagnose the source of this problem


October 20, 2013, 08:52 PM
The gun is a Savage 11 XP trophy hunter. Purchased brnad new a year ago. Total rounds through it are about 200 at this time.

Forgive me in advance if this is stupid, this is my first center fire rifle.

I broke the gun in using the 1 shot, then clean and let cool, repeat. then 2 shots, clean, then 5 shots.

Cleaned the gun again after about 50 rounds, then again after 100.

All of my brass has come out perfect near as I can tell. I'm presently pulling the whole bucket out and going through them.

There has been 20 rounds of federal 150 grain through it, with the rest being remmington core lokts. I have recently been working up reloads with the components being my existing brass and 150grain Hornady bullets.

The pictures do not do justice to the size of the brass/copper chunks in there. it literally looks like I milled a bunch of brass and then dumped the shavings in there.

Accuracy up till recently has been exceptional with this gun. 1-2" groups at up to 200 yards. then, it all went to poo. 5-6" at 100 yards if that.

At no time have I had any misfires, or squibs. reloads have been 41-44 grains of 4064 individually weighed. 2.775 OAL 150 grain Hornady

any thoughts? normal? abnormal? chamber and barrel look fine to me.

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October 20, 2013, 09:12 PM
I bet its not the rifle, I bet those scope rings or bases are loose.

October 20, 2013, 09:34 PM
Plus 1 for the mounting system has gone sideways on you. Did you clean all of the threads with an oil remover, then use Loc-Tite and torque the screws when you installed the bases and rings? If not, coming loose is no surprise.

Regarding the shavings, I've seen this before, caused by a rough receiver edge, rough barrel edge, rough extractor or rough plugger extractor (hole/slot) edge. Something, somewhere therein, was likely not machined as smooth as it should have been.

That it gave out suddenly, I'd start with the optics/mount system. Let us know what you discover.


October 20, 2013, 10:34 PM
I did nothing with the scope mounts. it came from savage with everything already mounted up and ready to shoot.

The rings and the base seemed pretty tight, but I was able to eek about a 1/4 turn out of the rings. and just a nudge out of the base

October 20, 2013, 10:41 PM
The scope may have gone bad. I have had even Leupolds break. :eek: I would not turn the screws by hand. Invest a few bucks into an inexpensive torque wrench. If you have another scope, switch it out, and see if the problem corrects. If it does not, it isn't the scope (probably), and likely is the rings or bases. Be sure to check the appropriate torque for the make of bases/rings. Some require 15 inch pounds, some require 20, some 18. The rings usually take 15 inch pounds. Without the torque wrench, who knows where the torque is, and you can damage that scope. That would be a bad thing. :(

I clean my threads with rubbing alcohol, then use either blue or red Lock-Tite. Most people suggest blue. A post-thought, have you checked the action screws? My Weatherbys and M70 that have B&C stocks require 65 inch pounds torque. If the stock is not properly torqued, it can put pressure on the barrel, and that can start to hinder groups.


Tolkachi Robotnik
October 20, 2013, 10:54 PM
There might be a build up inside the bore that is making the bullets strip instead of go out in regular order. Once you have it all cleaned up you need to really look at what is happening with the brass or copper pieces. Enough of anything like that or lead and the accuracy will be gone.

October 20, 2013, 11:11 PM
if its a factory package scope and mounts you can put your money on that's what went bad

October 20, 2013, 11:36 PM
I haven't messed with savages very much. Is it normal for so many barrel threads to be showing in the receiver?

October 20, 2013, 11:57 PM
Good eye Owen, I noticed that right off myself, wondered why they'd be showing also. Never have I seen that in any rifle! Doesn't look good.

October 21, 2013, 02:23 AM
OMG, I see your problem! Someone put the bolt on the wrong side of the rifle!

In all seriousness, I agree with Geno. Check the mounts, preferably replace them with something of quality.

I haven't messed with savages very much. Is it normal for so many barrel threads to be showing in the receiver?

That does seem odd, especially having so much space between feed ramp and chamber. Perhaps that is the source of the brass shaving.

October 21, 2013, 09:39 AM
I would check the magazine feed lips for sharp edges using a Q-tip. Inspect the bolt for any abnormal damage or scrapes and if found, determine the source.

October 21, 2013, 03:29 PM
The front screw holding the front scope base down on my Savage was too long and was bottoming out on the barrel threads so that the scope was not firmly anchored. It seemed like it was properly tightened down but when I tried the screw with and without the base I ended up using the same number of turns to "tighten." To remedy I had to grind a little off the end of that screw. As I learned later this is a common problem with Savage rifles.

October 21, 2013, 11:12 PM
The easy things to check are scope mounting as has been mentioned.
Did the crown receive any damage? Also check bore. Did barrel loosen?

I had rifle that would shoot nice groups then the whole group would move. We started shooting down to 50yds and the group could move 4"s. It was fine then the whole group would move. It turned out the ocular lens was moving if it was touched. Recoil would not necessarily move it either. I heard a bunch of voodoo theories but none were logical. It was pretty hard to find the culprit.

Did you change a load & then get the groups opening up? I am assuming .308 by the load data or at least a short action close to that caliber. My shooting buddy correlated his flyers with Hornady bullets to some higher velocity rounds. Keeping the under XXXX fps has his shooting Rem 700 shooting great. You may be just on a bad velocity and need to go up some.

October 21, 2013, 11:21 PM
Many razor sharp edges & burs on your feed ramp, mag box feed rails, and receiver rails are shaving brass flecks off of every round you chamber.

And the same things could be shaving parts off your brass or aluminum cleaning rod??

Take some 320 or 400 grit black emery paper and break all the sharp edges you can reach.
Then clean the snot out of it to get the metal particles and emery dust out of it.


October 22, 2013, 01:31 AM
If those are brass shavings I'm seeing, you better go to a gun smith. Barring that, chamber a round and eject it. Then look on the case to see where it was gouged. Is your spent brass grooved?

October 22, 2013, 01:43 AM
Had this same problem with a savage 111 I think.shooting 180 grains.

All holes were touching at 25 yards very tight group.

Move to 100yards total crap shoot.

He had a leopuold scope on it and never had time to figure it out. I'm guessing it was scope tho.

October 22, 2013, 09:27 AM
Dropped the gun off at a smith yesterday afternoon

Talked to the GS where I bought it. The gun is 1 1/2 years old, but they'll work with me to make it right. Sadly, deer hunting might be out this year unless I can borrow a used gun from the LGS while mine's away.

checked over the brass last night, there are a number of cases with bright stripes in them, starting at the shoulder and working back to about 3/4 of the way to the head. but barely so, they're not deep by any means. there are a few shoulders with marks too, but I can't tell if they're from hitting the ground or not.

October 22, 2013, 10:16 AM
In the photos you posted, it appears that the cartridge is being scrapped by the feeding ramp. That might explain the brass. It looks as though perhaps it was not smoothed sufficiently. I suspect that the accuracy problem revolves around the scope base or mounts.

Did you explain to them that you need the rifle back for deer season? Sometimes they will put a rush on the repair for that. Ruger had my GSR back to be in about a week, including shipping there and back.

Good luck, and let us know the findings.


October 22, 2013, 01:42 PM
I agree with the guys who said the metal shavings come from sharp edges inside the action/feed ramp, especially the right edge where the empty casing rubs against the inside of the chamber/action just before ejection.

The bolt face could also be a bit rough, causing small flakes during extraction, especially at the ejector hole.

Accuracy, as long as the bore has been cleaned regularly with a bronze brush and you're shooting factory ammo, may be traced to the inexpensive scope that came with the rifle.

If you're using reloaded ammo: Try backing out the sizer die to neck size only, provided the cases will chamber. If they won't, turn the die in a half-turn at a time until they just fit. Make sure that all cases will fit before priming and powder. If cases are being sized too much, for the chamber dimension, they will set back upon firing and show signs of excess pressure, i.e. flat primers, ejector hole flowage and brass shaving at that point. Misfires or light firing pin strikes can also result. That happened to my Savage many years ago, when reloading on a buddy's press. The factory couldn't find the problem, but replaced the bolt, which didn't help. It was only after I got my own press and adjusted the resizing die to minimally resize that the problem went away.

October 22, 2013, 07:16 PM
Also check the action screws. If the receiver is loose in the stock it will play havoc with your groups.

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