Tikka T3X or new Savage 110 Ultralight?

kylejason79

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Was about to pull the trigger (pun intended) on a T3X Superlite in 7mm RM when I got an email from Savage introducing their new 110 Ultralight with the Proof carbon barrel which is available in about a month. However, only calibers offered are 308, 270, 28 nosler, 280 ai, 30-06, 300WSM, 6.5 creed, and 6.5 PRC (called them this morning, no immediate plans to increase caliber selection). I’m primarily a mule/whitetail hunter with the occasional elk hunt. So - what caliber in your opinion would be the next best option in the Savage to 7mm RM? The 6.5 PRC seems good but concerned about factory ammo options (I am not a reloader) as well as bullet weight for stopping power. 300WSM also seems like good option. Would like to target shoot once in a while out to 1000yds but realistically not going to shoot at a deer / elk outside of 500yds (I’m not against the process, just not proficient enough to attempt). Please help me out - what caliber in the Savage and/or should I just stick with the Tikka? Currently have a Savage 308 but looking to cut down on weight. The $700 difference between the 110 and Tikka is not an issue to me, I want the better firearm. As always, thanks for the advice.
 

menhaden_man

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I was having similar debates and pulled together a pile of info (some guys were giving me a hard time)... anyhow, give it a look. I have around 20 long guns and just picked up a TX3 Lite in 6.5 CM (my second rifle in that caliber)... first impression are great but I haven't stretched it out yet. Also have two Savage 110s (25-06, 30-06) and really like both of them... killed a over a dozen critters easy and they do excellent with factory ammo.

Guys one here will say Tikka all day, though I think Savage makes a great shooting gun. If you go that route, I'd probably say 6.5 CM based on what you're looking to do. Not sure there is a wrong answer though.

 

tdhanses

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I’d go 300wsm, great all around cal. I would go with the Savage over the Tikka personally as that barrel will cost you close to $900 to install on a Tikka and if you ever want to replace that plastic stock there is another $500. If the stock sucks on the Savage I’d change it out in time.
 

Yellowknife

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Aren’t the Savages limited to 2 rd magazines in the fat magnums? That would be a deal breaker for me, but maybe I’m just a bad shot.
 

tdhanses

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Aren’t the Savages limited to 2 rd magazines in the fat magnums? That would be a deal breaker for me, but maybe I’m just a bad shot.
Wilt out a mag box I bet they are but if they have one I’m sure the aftermarket will resolve this issue.
 
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kylejason79

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Mag capacity is 2 on the 300 WSM, 6.5prc and 28 nosler. 4 on everything else.
Thoughts on the 280AI?
 

Newtosavage

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.280 AI is basically your 7mm Mag, and is more than enough for mule deer IMO. Having owned and built a number of Savage rifles (hence my handle from when I started), I can't argue the Savage will be a "better" rifle than the Tikka. I have owned several of both. I still own a Tikka and no longer have any Savage rifles in my safe, if that tells you anything.

I could have built one of those 110 ultralights years ago. The proof research barrels have been available for Savage rifles for years through Midway.
 
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kylejason79

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.280 AI is basically your 7mm Mag, and is more than enough for mule deer IMO. Having owned and built a number of Savage rifles (hence my handle from when I started), I can't argue the Savage will be a "better" rifle than the Tikka. I have owned several of both. I still own a Tikka and no longer have any Savage rifles in my safe, if that tells you anything.

I could have built one of those 110 ultralights years ago. The proof research barrels have been available for Savage rifles for years through Midway.
Yeah this is what is really attracting me to the rifle, the Proof barrels seem awesome and the Savage looks like a great value.
 

Newtosavage

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Yeah this is what is really attracting me to the rifle, the Proof barrels seem awesome and the Savage looks like a great value.
I'd be real curious to know just how light that 110 Savage is with the PR barrel. It wouldn't surprise me at all to find out the Tikka is just as light, or lighter. But they could be comparable.
 
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kylejason79

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I'd be real curious to know just how light that 110 Savage is with the PR barrel. It wouldn't surprise me at all to find out the Tikka is just as light, or lighter. But they could be comparable.
They are advertising 5.8-6.0 pounds. This is prob mostly due to advertised barrel length of 22 or 24 inches depending on caliber.
 

HNTR918

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I'm having the same debate. My hunting partner talked me out of buying a T3X and to wait until after shot show. Let me start off by saying I'm a huge tikka fan! I held the Savage 110 Ultralite last weekend. The stock was much nicer than a tikka lite stock and I like the rubberized panels for grip. The action and bolt looked very nice, you can see they spent alot of time and money milling out all of the weight and adding deep flutes to the bolt ($30 savings for bolt, $100 savings for action). The 110 Ultralite action bolt handle seemed to be a bit firmer than the 110 storm right next to it, probably from the blueprinting, lets pray for a match chamber. The comb height adjustment allows me to shoot a 50mm scope without having to install a kydex riser which is additional weight savings ($50 savings). The trigger must have been adjusted to the lowest setting as the first time it went off by surprise as I applied pressure. The barrel looked identical to the ones at the proof booth, I did notice the shank was very short, probably for extra weight savings. It is also threaded and comes with a thread protector ($150 savings). I'm very happy that they offer 6.5 PRC, it appeared to be on a long magnum action, and their website shows the same weight as the 28 nosler. This is exciting for hand loads and 156gr Bergers. $700 difference - $30 - $100 - $50 - $150 ... Now we are at less than a $400 difference and you get a stiffer barrel and stiffer stock. I think I just talked myself into buying one. Only negatives I can think of...I'll probably swap the bolt handle for a TI one and I hate the safety paddle thing inside the trigger.
 
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kylejason79

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I'm having the same debate. My hunting partner talked me out of buying a T3X and to wait until after shot show. Let me start off by saying I'm a huge tikka fan! I held the Savage 110 Ultralite last weekend. The stock was much nicer than a tikka lite stock and I like the rubberized panels for grip. The action and bolt looked very nice, you can see they spent alot of time and money milling out all of the weight and adding deep flutes to the bolt ($30 savings for bolt, $100 savings for action). The 110 Ultralite action bolt handle seemed to be a bit firmer than the 110 storm right next to it, probably from the blueprinting, lets pray for a match chamber. The comb height adjustment allows me to shoot a 50mm scope without having to install a kydex riser which is additional weight savings ($50 savings). The trigger must have been adjusted to the lowest setting as the first time it went off by surprise as I applied pressure. The barrel looked identical to the ones at the proof booth, I did notice the shank was very short, probably for extra weight savings. It is also threaded and comes with a thread protector ($150 savings). I'm very happy that they offer 6.5 PRC, it appeared to be on a long magnum action, and their website shows the same weight as the 28 nosler. This is exciting for hand loads and 156gr Bergers. $700 difference - $30 - $100 - $50 - $150 ... Now we are at less than a $400 difference and you get a stiffer barrel and stiffer stock. I think I just talked myself into buying one. Only negatives I can think of...I'll probably swap the bolt handle for a TI one and I hate the safety paddle thing inside the trigger.
Thanks for the thorough response. What are your thoughts on 6.5 PRC Vs. 280AI?
 

JeffRaines

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The action isn't as smooth on the Savage over the Tikka, but honestly Savage wins for me due to twist rate. Unless you go 6.5 creedmoor with Tikka, the Tikkas are really sub-optimal. The triggers are also so-so, they're not bad at all if you get the match spring and you can get used to a two-stage.

On building one vs buying this one - the Savage secondary market is cheap, but to buy a pre-fit Proof barrel you're looking at $830-900. Looking hard you may be able to come across a Savage Lightweight storm in long action for 200-300. If you have the tools to put it together congrats you didn't save any money, but if you have to have a smith do it you're looking at not saving any money at all.

Does anyone know if Savage is chambering the barrels themselves, or are they buying them from proof already chambered? If its the latter case its honestly a no-brainer.
 

tdhanses

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The action isn't as smooth on the Savage over the Tikka, but honestly Savage wins for me due to twist rate. Unless you go 6.5 creedmoor with Tikka, the Tikkas are really sub-optimal. The triggers are also so-so, they're not bad at all if you get the match spring and you can get used to a two-stage.

On building one vs buying this one - the Savage secondary market is cheap, but to buy a pre-fit Proof barrel you're looking at $830-900. Looking hard you may be able to come across a Savage Lightweight storm in long action for 200-300. If you have the tools to put it together congrats you didn't save any money, but if you have to have a smith do it you're looking at not saving any money at all.

Does anyone know if Savage is chambering the barrels themselves, or are they buying them from proof already chambered? If its the latter case its honestly a no-brainer.
Wouldn’t shock me that proof is chambering the barrels and sounds like the action is an improved 110 storm from the post above.
 

tdhanses

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Wonder if the detachable mag box is an acis style or if there is an aftermarket option already to use these?
 

renagde

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I'm having the same debate. My hunting partner talked me out of buying a T3X and to wait until after shot show. Let me start off by saying I'm a huge tikka fan! I held the Savage 110 Ultralite last weekend. The stock was much nicer than a tikka lite stock and I like the rubberized panels for grip. The action and bolt looked very nice, you can see they spent alot of time and money milling out all of the weight and adding deep flutes to the bolt ($30 savings for bolt, $100 savings for action). The 110 Ultralite action bolt handle seemed to be a bit firmer than the 110 storm right next to it, probably from the blueprinting, lets pray for a match chamber. The comb height adjustment allows me to shoot a 50mm scope without having to install a kydex riser which is additional weight savings ($50 savings). The trigger must have been adjusted to the lowest setting as the first time it went off by surprise as I applied pressure. The barrel looked identical to the ones at the proof booth, I did notice the shank was very short, probably for extra weight savings. It is also threaded and comes with a thread protector ($150 savings). I'm very happy that they offer 6.5 PRC, it appeared to be on a long magnum action, and their website shows the same weight as the 28 nosler. This is exciting for hand loads and 156gr Bergers. $700 difference - $30 - $100 - $50 - $150 ... Now we are at less than a $400 difference and you get a stiffer barrel and stiffer stock. I think I just talked myself into buying one. Only negatives I can think of...I'll probably swap the bolt handle for a TI one and I hate the safety paddle thing inside the trigger.
It doesn't seem like the stock market is very big once it comes to a nice carbon fiber lightweight stock with a pistol grip. In fact, I haven't been able to find any lightweight (30oz or less) stocks for a 110 but I could definitely be missing something. That would be my only concern, as I'm in the same boat; trying to decide between a Tikka, the Savage ultralight, and maybe a few others that are built on a 700 action clone. Honestly, you're basically at the same price if you take a $700 Tikka and add a prefit carbon barrel on it.
 

JeffRaines

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It doesn't seem like the stock market is very big once it comes to a nice carbon fiber lightweight stock with a pistol grip. In fact, I haven't been able to find any lightweight (30oz or less) stocks for a 110 but I could definitely be missing something. That would be my only concern, as I'm in the same boat; trying to decide between a Tikka, the Savage ultralight, and maybe a few others that are built on a 700 action clone. Honestly, you're basically at the same price if you take a $700 Tikka and add a prefit carbon barrel on it.
These Savages are already listed at a little over $1100 street price. Where are you finding a Proof carbon barrel for $400 installed/chambered? Point me in that direction!
 

Aviator

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Nov 24, 2019
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The 280AI won’t come close to 7mm Mag in a 22 inch barrel! They may as well went standard 280 Remington!
 
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