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GUNS Magazine Digital April 2011 - Page 34
MAkER: SAVAGE ARMS 100 SPRINGDAlE RD. WESTFIElD, MA 01085 (413) 568-7001 WWW.SAVAGEARMS.CoM JOHN TAFFIN MOdEL 93btVS ACtION tyPE: CALIbER: CAPACIty: bARREL LENGth: OVERALL LENGth: Bolt action .22 WMR 5 21" 40" 7 .5 pounds WEIGht: fINISh: The Savage Model 93 .22 WMR is here. ith all the options we have today in .22 long Rifle ammunition, as well as varmint loads for the .223 Remington and the .22-250, is the .22 Winchester Magnum Rimfire still a viable choice? The .22 Magnum is certainly a better hunting cartridge for larger varmints and small game than the .22 long Rifle. It is not only more powerful, but it also bucks the wind better than its little brother. Wind is something I always have to factor into the equation in my hunting areas; still days with no wind are absolutely rare. A look at both the .22 Long Rifle and the .22 Magnum from CCI reveals the latter is almost 600 fps faster at 1,900 fps. If you hunt in an area where wind is not a factor and the distances are close, the .22 Long Rifle is a real bargain as more than three boxes can be purchased for the cost of one box of .22 Magnums. The .22 Long Rifle is definitely the plinker’s cartridge, however, the Magnum version wins out with the serious hunter. For long-distance shooting the .22 Magnum doesn’t even come close to the .223 or .22-250. However, at 100 yards or less, the .22 Magnum will do everything the other two will do (we are speaking here of hunting varmints and small game). However, the Magnum has two distinct advantages. For one thing, it is much quieter and this can be a real plus in settled areas. The other advantage is cost, especially if you don’t reload. Looking at the current price list from Midway, I find 100 rounds of .22 Magnum runs $20 to $24. For the same number of .223 and .22-250 hollowpoint varmint loads the cost is north of $90 and more than $100. That is a huge difference, if distances are such, the .22 Magnum will suffice. OK, the .22 Magnum is much more powerful than the .22 Long Rifle and definitely a lot cheaper to shoot than centerfire .22s. So what rifle is a good choice? For the past summer I have VARMINtS bEWARE Stainless steel None, scope bases provided Brown laminated thumbhole stock PRICE: StOCk: SIGhtS: W $476 been using a Savage 93BTVS .22 Magnum. I went with the Savage as I had experienced such excellent results with the Model 14 Savage chambered in .250-3000 (see October 2008). Savage catalogs listed several .22 Magnum bolt-action rifles, however, I was interested in a heavy-barreled varmint rifle. I naturally went to the Model 93. This version has a heavy stainless steel button-rifled barrel and the action is bolted into a man-sized brown laminated stock. Both stainless steel and lamination are good choices for heavy-duty and/or wet weather shooting. The stock has a generous pistol grip, thumbhole and high cheekpiece for easy scope use. The stock has a wide forearm with three relatively large ventilation slots under the barrel. The stock also has a rubber buttplate and sling swivel studs. Two studs are found at the forearm allowing for both the use of a sling, and with a weight of 7-1/2 pounds a sling is desirable for any situation requiring much walking, John found the savage model 93 was pleasant, the .22 Wmr chambering reasonably inexpensive for the power and very accurate. 34 WWW.GUNSMAGAZINE.COM • APRIL 2011