Mossberg or Savage for 224 Valkyrie?

DavidBoren

Private
Minuteman
Mar 16, 2021
61
30
Portland, Oregon
Looking at pulling the trigger on buying a rifle to get me back into reloading/shooting, and I think I have decided on grabbing a 224 Valkyrie bolt rifle for this purpose. This isn't really a discussion on the merits or drawbacks of the chosen cartridge, rather simply the rifle that will be shooting it.

The Mossberg MVP LR is built off of their 762 action... which is awesome, because I find the little flappy thing used on their 556 actions is suspect, at best. It also allows for a larger ejection port and longer magazines. Speaking of magazines, it uses Pmags, and high quality magazines are always welcome. The MVP LR has a decent stock from the start, with an adjustable comb height and low angle grip. It also has a 20" fluted barrel, which is nice.

The Savage has a 22" sporter barrel, and their modular AccuFit stock, AccuTrigger, and whatever magazines they use.

Both/either will be sent to a decent gunsmith to have the action trued, bedded into whatever stock it comes with, and the factory barrel chambered with a JGS reamer and crowned.

So, knowing that it will be massaged by a competent gunsmith either way, which of the two rifles would you recommend?
 

fdkay

Gunny Sergeant
PX Member
Minuteman
  • Nov 27, 2009
    5,408
    2,029
    58
    Ingleside, Tx
    Looking at pulling the trigger on buying a rifle to get me back into reloading/shooting, and I think I have decided on grabbing a 224 Valkyrie bolt rifle for this purpose. This isn't really a discussion on the merits or drawbacks of the chosen cartridge, rather simply the rifle that will be shooting it.

    The Mossberg MVP LR is built off of their 762 action... which is awesome, because I find the little flappy thing used on their 556 actions is suspect, at best. It also allows for a larger ejection port and longer magazines. Speaking of magazines, it uses Pmags, and high quality magazines are always welcome. The MVP LR has a decent stock from the start, with an adjustable comb height and low angle grip. It also has a 20" fluted barrel, which is nice.

    The Savage has a 22" sporter barrel, and their modular AccuFit stock, AccuTrigger, and whatever magazines they use.

    Both/either will be sent to a decent gunsmith to have the action trued, bedded into whatever stock it comes with, and the factory barrel chambered with a JGS reamer and crowned.

    So, knowing that it will be massaged by a competent gunsmith either way, which of the two rifles would you recommend?
    I wouldn't spend money on either, if the intent was to send them to someone to polish the turd.
    You're taking a budget rifle and adding unrecoverable money to it.
    But, I'd lean to the Savage, solely because they have a long history of good accuracy.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: JIm T

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    Whats your budget for rifle + gunsmith work?

    Whats the intended purpose?
    Probably no more than $1000 for the gun, half that again for a little bit of gunsmithing. Another ~$1500 in glass.

    Trying to get into long range shooting. Want something I can shoot comfortably all day, because the thing that needs the most work in this equation is me.

    I want something I can tinker with and learn the ropes on/with... most importantly, learn what I want and need to change. So starting with factory stuffs is fine, I will learn what needs upgraded and why along the way. Getting it touched up by a gunsmith just is peace of mind that I am at least starting from a set point.

    I am thinking that the Savage may be the better starting point, even though it seemingly has less "features" compared to the MVP. The Savage's 22" barrel will probably be crowned at 20"... can't do anything about the thickness, but hopefully shorter proves to be a bit more rigid. I can always replace the bottom metal for different magazines if that becomes an issue. And I can modify the angle of the grip on the stock if I need to.
     

    RFutch

    Major Hide Member
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Sep 28, 2010
    1,098
    538
    39
    Georgia
    I hope you like reloading... the valkyrie is a finicky sob. Of those 2, I'd rather have the savage but, like the others I would not dump more money into machine work. Personally I don't think either of those two rifles are very appealing, especially in a valkyrie, and I'm a valkyrie bolt gun owner.
     

    fdkay

    Gunny Sergeant
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Nov 27, 2009
    5,408
    2,029
    58
    Ingleside, Tx
    Probably no more than $1000 for the gun, half that again for a little bit of gunsmithing. Another ~$1500 in glass.

    Trying to get into long range shooting. Want something I can shoot comfortably all day, because the thing that needs the most work in this equation is me.

    I want something I can tinker with and learn the ropes on/with... most importantly, learn what I want and need to change. So starting with factory stuffs is fine, I will learn what needs upgraded and why along the way. Getting it touched up by a gunsmith just is peace of mind that I am at least starting from a set point.

    I am thinking that the Savage may be the better starting point, even though it seemingly has less "features" compared to the MVP. The Savage's 22" barrel will probably be crowned at 20"... can't do anything about the thickness, but hopefully shorter proves to be a bit more rigid. I can always replace the bottom metal for different magazines if that becomes an issue. And I can modify the angle of the grip on the stock if I need to.
    Have you considered the 6.5 Grendel?
    There are more loads available for it, Howa makes some dandy rifles that are far better than either of your listed choices.
    The valkyrie is a really decent cartridge, lots of stories of folks having issues getting the 90's to shoot, which is the whole idea behind it.

    Another option is the 6mm ARC, same bolt head as the Grendel.
    Any bolt rifle chambered in 7.62x39 can be rechambered in either of these cartridges.
     

    b6graham

    MMPRL
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Jul 29, 2014
    5,396
    4,394
    Boston
    I think there are a lot better options to do what you want to do

    1 being 223 instead
    2 being neither of those platforms
    3 being something you can use forever

    If you're at a $2500 budget for rifle and glass I think you're looking at it the wrong way

    Origin $875
    Criterion (or other) $350
    KRG Bravo $350 or Oryx or XRS
    TT Primary $150
    Vortex Strike Eagle and Rings $700
    Gauges and tools $125

    You can turn that origin into anything you want. 223 6ARC 308 7SAUM with just a barrel and bolt face

    223 from a 26" barrel is gonna be approaching 224V from those short 20" barrels anyways
     

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    I appreciate the feedback, thusfar. It seems the reputation of Savage carries the vote, even over the newer MVP's features.

    I wasn't really looking to discuss my choice cartridge, and I am pretty set in my decision. The 223/556 is a fine cartridge, and plenty capable of what I want to do (especially out of a bolt gun). I simply do not want one right meow. Same with the Grendel/PPC cartridges.

    The Valkyrie is a happy medium between the 223/556 and the Grendel/PPC's... and I am ok with that. Having a rifle with the SPC bolt face is not a concern for me... I could have a 224 Valkyrie target barrel, a 6.8spc hunting barrel, and a 338 Specter suppressed barrel... that's probably fine as far as variety provided by a single rifle.

    But I do want to shoot 224 caliber bullets... don't want a 223/556... don't need a 22nosler or 22-250, although I have nothing against either...

    I plan on reloading for this, and don't mind if it's not especially easy. I enjoy getting lost in tedious processes, which is honestly the entire point of this excerise... reloading. I need a constructive hobby to occupy my mind, and getting to shoot/utilize the byproduct of this reloading hobby in another shooting hobby is just a bonus.

    I enjoy an underdog story, and something about using a factory rifle appeals to me. I wasn't aware that Savage was considered such a poor starting place... blueprinting a factory action used to be ok... and I can get the whole rifle for the price of most any of the dedicated actions. Yeah, they are better, don't require massaging from a competent gunsmith... but buying a rifle can get me shooting sooner. Which appeals to me. Even modifying a factory stock intrigues me.

    There is a lot less tinkering when it you go with a semi-custom action and pre-fit barrel, chassis stock... sure, it all assembles like Legos, as if it was meant to be... but it just seems, boring. No adventure.

    I am in this for the journey just as much as I am in it for the destination...
     

    b6graham

    MMPRL
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Jul 29, 2014
    5,396
    4,394
    Boston
    If you want to dump money into a project you'll never see the return of then you're on the right track with your OP rifles
     

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    If you want to dump money into a project you'll never see the return of then you're on the right track with your OP rifles

    What do you mean by see the return of?

    I do not expect to recover money spent on gunsmithing, nor do I have any problem paying a competent gunsmith to work on my rifle(s). I don't plan on selling this rifle once I get it, so I don't care about what value it holds against semi-custom actions on the 2nd hand market.

    And if it's not capable of the same accuracy as a semi-custom action, even after it is worked on by a competent gunsmith... then it gives ME room to grow. Once I get good enough that I demand something better, this rifle has paid for itself multiple times over just as learning tool, if nothing more.

    My friend that runs a firearm training range in Florida is not impressed by the MVP rifles, although he has failed to provide any details as to why. Can people please explain what is so bad about the MVP 762 action? Specifics would be preferred.
     

    b6graham

    MMPRL
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Jul 29, 2014
    5,396
    4,394
    Boston
    Hard to know if a rifle is holding you back when you don't know if its you or the rifle

    And you still end up with a platform that doesn't have carryover to something better or afford you the option to upgrade
     

    fdkay

    Gunny Sergeant
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Nov 27, 2009
    5,408
    2,029
    58
    Ingleside, Tx
    I appreciate the feedback, thusfar. It seems the reputation of Savage carries the vote, even over the newer MVP's features.

    I wasn't really looking to discuss my choice cartridge, and I am pretty set in my decision. The 223/556 is a fine cartridge, and plenty capable of what I want to do (especially out of a bolt gun). I simply do not want one right meow. Same with the Grendel/PPC cartridges.

    The Valkyrie is a happy medium between the 223/556 and the Grendel/PPC's... and I am ok with that. Having a rifle with the SPC bolt face is not a concern for me... I could have a 224 Valkyrie target barrel, a 6.8spc hunting barrel, and a 338 Specter suppressed barrel... that's probably fine as far as variety provided by a single rifle.

    But I do want to shoot 224 caliber bullets... don't want a 223/556... don't need a 22nosler or 22-250, although I have nothing against either...

    I plan on reloading for this, and don't mind if it's not especially easy. I enjoy getting lost in tedious processes, which is honestly the entire point of this excerise... reloading. I need a constructive hobby to occupy my mind, and getting to shoot/utilize the byproduct of this reloading hobby in another shooting hobby is just a bonus.

    I enjoy an underdog story, and something about using a factory rifle appeals to me. I wasn't aware that Savage was considered such a poor starting place... blueprinting a factory action used to be ok... and I can get the whole rifle for the price of most any of the dedicated actions. Yeah, they are better, don't require massaging from a competent gunsmith... but buying a rifle can get me shooting sooner. Which appeals to me. Even modifying a factory stock intrigues me.

    There is a lot less tinkering when it you go with a semi-custom action and pre-fit barrel, chassis stock... sure, it all assembles like Legos, as if it was meant to be... but it just seems, boring. No adventure.

    I am in this for the journey just as much as I am in it for the destination...
    Not sure what you have against the .22 nosler, since it is really nothing more than a valkyrie with a rebated rim to fit the .223 bolt face.
    Although it does have slightly more boiler room.
     

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    B6graham, lots of people have shot better groups than I can dream of using accurized factory actions. And, in the event that I get good enough to warrant leaving the 224 Valkyrie behind, the rifle could easily be upgraded to match... it's not like modifying bolt faces is anything new... and there is plenty of potential left in the short action length for me to tap into. If I get the Savage, it could go from 224 Valkyrie to 6.5prc in like 5 minutes...

    Fdkay, I have absolutely no problemz with the 22nosler. It is a fine cartridge, and I appreciate what Nosler did with that particular case very much... just not what I want for this build.

    Spife7980, I am sure that was somewhat of a joke... but it is not very helpful. If you a bad experience with Mossberg to share, I can at least draw my own conclusions from the data you may provide. Otherwise, your statement is less than necessary.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: drgnfly_57

    Luke G

    Sergeant of the Hide
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Dec 9, 2019
    163
    68
    The savage would be the better choice out of the two as the mossberg feels like you are running the bolt through sandpaper slightly more than the savage does. If you are absolutely dead set on a factory action you would be better off going with a howa and a prefit barrel, howa won’t need the action trued and is a much nicer action. Or just do things the correct way and buy a cheaper custom action.
     

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    To be clear, I understand the merits of semi-custom actions. They are built to tolerances that allow convenient, prefit barrels to fit without issue. They incorporate features that have been added to factory actions by custom shops and gunsmiths for decades. And they are quite reasonably priced these days.

    This is just a project to cut my teeth on. To learn what I want and need when I get serious and build a "real" rifle. I like the caliber and want to grab one to play around with. I like bolt actions, so a factory bolt rifle in 224 Valkyrie is actually a pretty decent starting point for me.

    I am looking for something to tinker with. Something that isn't perfect. I grew up with off the shelf Remingtons. Had an AR50, once upon a time. I, honestly, do not require silky goodness right now... a worked-over MVP or Savage action will probably be fine for this purpose.

    I am really liking the idea of seeing what can be done with a Savage Prairie Hunter... at first just using what it comes with... blueprint the action, pin the 20moa scope rail, remove the iron sights, cut/crown the stock 1:7tw barrel at 20", rechamber the stock barrel with a trusted (JGS) reamer, skim bed the stock... I have seen a few threads about modifying stocks that have given me some ideas for that AccuFit stock.

    And, it's not as if the reworked factory barrel cannot be replaced after a couple thousand rounds. It's a Savage, I can even get a prefit barrel like the cool kids. Lol. I am pretty sure that even the Mossberg MVP 762 can take small shank Savage barrels/nuts with little to no modification.

    Does literally nobody use factory Remington/Savage rifles as starting points anymore? Why not enjoy the rifle a little bit before stripping it for its receiver? Or are semi-custom actions so common these days that you only reuse factory actions if you already own it? Is going out and buying complete factory rifles with the intent of customizing it as you go now a completely dead idea?
     

    m1match

    Sergeant
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Jan 2, 2003
    706
    403
    Western US
    Knowledgeable shooters don't use factory Remington/Savage rifles as starting points anymore because time and money spent on reworking them to be more functional is time and money that you're never going to get back and particularly with a Savage action you end up with a rifle that will never be what you want it to be if you're a skilled rifleman. We hardly ever see Savage actions at our local matches any more and every Savage that I have ever seen at our local matches ends up choking at some point in time, with failures to extract or failures to feed being inevitable. If you're wanting to go lower price point, like Luke G said, you'd be better off going with a Howa action because those actions are pretty good out of the box. Or like so many shooters are doing today, get a Tikka and later on if you want put it in a KRG Bravo chassis or rebarrel it. Factory Tikkas like the Tac A1 or the CTR will get you into the precision rifle sport out of the box without modification. You get an excellent rifle isn't so full of flaws that you have to spend a lot of time and money to fix it.
     
    Last edited:

    Luke G

    Sergeant of the Hide
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Dec 9, 2019
    163
    68
    As stated above Tikka is the correct way to do a factory action I just didn’t mention it due to the caliber that you wanted. I have 4 of them currently and if you decide to do a difference caliber there’s no better choice for a factory action. Howa just happens to make an action with the bolt face you need so that was my recommendation. Either one would be a better option though.
     

    b6graham

    MMPRL
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Jul 29, 2014
    5,396
    4,394
    Boston
    Does literally nobody use factory Remington/Savage rifles as starting points anymore? Why not enjoy the rifle a little bit before stripping it for its receiver? Or are semi-custom actions so common these days that you only reuse factory actions if you already own it? Is going out and buying complete factory rifles with the intent of customizing it as you go now a completely dead idea?
    if you understood the merits of custom actions like the Origin then you'd understand why no one uses savage/ruger/remington as a starting point anymore

    go back 3 years to a match. how many people had $2k remingtons/savages RPRs. a metric shit ton. now? 1-3 maybe

    why spend $300-500 on a factory receiver and $250-400 on truing when you could have an Origin for $875? or even the mack bros evo stainless when they figure out how to make it with tolerances for shouldered prefits

    and we customize the shit out of everything still
    stocks/chassis
    barrels
    bolt faces

    most people who buy factory guns leave them that factory assuming they dont like wasting money. the exception to that is tikka. because their actions are true and great from the start and a MUCH better starting point for a build than a savage and definitely a mossberg

    the issue you'll have with tikka is 224V as they dont make it, and you can probably blame Federal for that. and for it being built in WAY less ARs than a few years ago. lots and lots of companies not making those barrels in favor of 6ARC, but even before 6ARC no where near as many as when it first came out

    what you're describing doing to a Savage Prarie Hunter is an insane waste of money. even if you have the lathe and do all the work yourself. but it's your money. we can only try so hard to save your time money and frustration
     
    • Like
    Reactions: m1match

    spife7980

    Luchador
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Feb 10, 2017
    9,582
    8,347
    Central TX
    To be clear, I understand the merits of semi-custom actions. They are built to tolerances that allow convenient, prefit barrels to fit without issue. They incorporate features that have been added to factory actions by custom shops and gunsmiths for decades. And they are quite reasonably priced these days.

    This is just a project to cut my teeth on. To learn what I want and need when I get serious and build a "real" rifle. I like the caliber and want to grab one to play around with. I like bolt actions, so a factory bolt rifle in 224 Valkyrie is actually a pretty decent starting point for me.

    I am looking for something to tinker with. Something that isn't perfect. I grew up with off the shelf Remingtons. Had an AR50, once upon a time. I, honestly, do not require silky goodness right now... a worked-over MVP or Savage action will probably be fine for this purpose.

    I am really liking the idea of seeing what can be done with a Savage Prairie Hunter... at first just using what it comes with... blueprint the action, pin the 20moa scope rail, remove the iron sights, cut/crown the stock 1:7tw barrel at 20", rechamber the stock barrel with a trusted (JGS) reamer, skim bed the stock... I have seen a few threads about modifying stocks that have given me some ideas for that AccuFit stock.

    And, it's not as if the reworked factory barrel cannot be replaced after a couple thousand rounds. It's a Savage, I can even get a prefit barrel like the cool kids. Lol. I am pretty sure that even the Mossberg MVP 762 can take small shank Savage barrels/nuts with little to no modification.

    Does literally nobody use factory Remington/Savage rifles as starting points anymore? Why not enjoy the rifle a little bit before stripping it for its receiver? Or are semi-custom actions so common these days that you only reuse factory actions if you already own it? Is going out and buying complete factory rifles with the intent of customizing it as you go now a completely dead idea?
    The issue is that when you rework a piece of shit like that you still have a piece of shit when you’re done with it.

    Its not that we’re saying not to mess with factory, we’re saying not to mess with those factories. You can do better with your money.

    If you’re going to get a factory action... get a different one. Howa or tikka are the ones with a good rep these days.
     

    supercorndogs

    Ham Fisted Gorilla
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Feb 17, 2014
    7,403
    6,897
    Colorado
    Just go order one of the custom actions everyone is suggesting, that are on back order. You can shoot it someday. :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO:

    Seems to me like, if one were suggesting the custom action route is the only way to go when building a rifle. It would be smart to go with a factory remington, so all your accessories will fit the custom action if you decide you want to spend that kind of money, on an action. It seems like many, just end up screwing Remage barrels on their Remingtons and carrying on, rather than buying custom actions. The only thing a Remington usually "needs" is the primary extraction needs addressed. They usually have none if you get a newer one.

    The world doesn't revolve around "what guys show up to comps with." You can shoot the wee out of a moss berg or a savage or a high point.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Smid. and b6graham

    spife7980

    Luchador
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Feb 10, 2017
    9,582
    8,347
    Central TX
    The world doesn't revolve around "what guys show up to comps with." You can shoot the wee out of a moss berg or a savage or a high point.
    I don’t disagree... but I wouldn’t buy a 1,000 dollar model mossburg. Id buy a 300 dollar model and not waste any money trying to improve it.
    For a grand go elsewhere is all I think anyone’s really saying.
     

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    Everyone casting shade on Remington/Savages, like damn, how did anyone ever hit anything before the actions we have available today? I would hate to see how you all build cars if starting with factory $#!+ is so far below you.

    Anyways, I didn't see any Howa's with the SPC/Valk bolt face. Some bolt action Remingtons and Rugers in 6.8spc, but that's not 224 Valkyrie. I do want to be able to use the barrel it comes with if I buy a complete rifle for this.
     

    supercorndogs

    Ham Fisted Gorilla
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Feb 17, 2014
    7,403
    6,897
    Colorado
    Your caliber choice has certainly thinned your options. I am not sure why the obsession with the caliber. I don't see what it would do better for you than 223 or 308.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: spife7980

    RFutch

    Major Hide Member
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Sep 28, 2010
    1,098
    538
    39
    Georgia
    Everyone casting shade on Remington/Savages, like damn, how did anyone ever hit anything before the actions we have available today? I would hate to see how you all build cars if starting with factory $#!+ is so far below you.

    Just a few short years ago that's all there was. Now there are a ton of options. And, with the money you are talking about spending you are almost in CUSTOM RIFLE territorry becasue of all the great choces available today. WTF would you spend the same amount of money on something that is largely considered a POS (compared to other options now available) when you can have a CUSTOM RIFLE for barely any more.

    IS any of this sinking in yet!!!!
     
    • Like
    Reactions: b6graham

    Greg Langelius *

    Resident Elder Fart
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Aug 10, 2001
    8,866
    4,888
    AZ
    I've owned both the Mossberg 223 Predator) as well as several 223 AR's., and several of the 7.62 length Savage rifles, both D/M and closed magazines. The Valk is a respectable cartridge, and seriously doubt it's be going away anywhere soon; cartridge choices are a personal thing, I wish you best fortune with you selection. My choices were 223, 6.5 Grendel, (AR), 308 (AR and Bolt), 260 Rem (Bolt) and .30-06 (Bolt and Garand). Each is intended for specific goals, and all have worked well at those goals.

    I would caution against going full bore at the full gunsmithing approach as an initial path. In today's market there's a lot of value in the original basic gun. I'd explore their potentials with several quality ammo's and possibly even try some handloading load development before I made any irrevocable modifications/updates to the original item. You may find the kind of performance you actually need without getting deep into your pockets right off the bat. One point I'd like you to consider; most higher range factory rifles can not only outshoot their owners, but may shoot better than those owners ever would,. Where marksmanship discipline is concerned, there are no guarantees. There is a whole legion of shooters who think that money and a gunsmith is all they need for success. After 3+ decades of competitive shooting, I can assure you that is not guaranteed. We cannot buy ourselves into the "X"-Ring.

    I used to like the Savage rifles more than I do now. Their current line with the modular ergonomic options is something I cannot take advantage of. My 6' 5 1/2" Height makes the available LOP options much too short for me to use with success. It's not Savage's fault that I'm built weird, I upgrade to aftermarket stocks (the Choate Savage Tactical is very high on my list). And I am always able to manage an upgrade that fits me well. So can you.

    Greg
     

    fdkay

    Gunny Sergeant
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Nov 27, 2009
    5,408
    2,029
    58
    Ingleside, Tx
    Fdkay, I have absolutely no problemz with the 22nosler. It is a fine cartridge, and I appreciate what Nosler did with that particular case very much... just not what I want for this build.
    I'm a little perplexed by this response as you have admitted, you are going to reload.
    You are looking for a certain level of performance in a light recoiling cartridge.
    You want to shoot .224 diameter bullets.
    You want to shoot long range.

    While I admit, the .22 Nosler is not for everyone, it checks EVERY SINGLE BOX you have listed.
    The big advantage is the .223 bolt face. That opens up your choices in rifles to EVERY single company that makes bolt action rifles.

    Now, you do say, you want to shoot a factory tube, until it is shot out.
    Okay, I can kind of see that.
    But then again, you say you want to buy a factory rifle and send it to a gunsmith to work some magic on it. Well, I'm here to tell you, many of them aren't going to want to do much when you keep the factory barrel, they are going to want to install a custom barrel, after all, their name is riding on the quality and reputation of what comes out of their shop.

    So, what is really the end goal here?
    I will tell you, I don't have the hate for Savage that many here do, if you could look at some of the posts from ten years ago, many folks were proudly displaying their Savage rifles here.
    There are better actions, for sure, but they work. They usually make accurate rifles, if it isn't they take care of it.

    What most here are trying to do is stop you from dumping money in a bottomless pit.

    I have taken a look (online) of the .224 Valkyrie Savage prairie hunter. if that is what you want, buy the damn thing. What I would do, before sending it to a smith, is drop it into an Oryx chassis, put some decent glass on it and shoot it (and some 6.8 mags)
    That WILL leave you room to grow, if you want to keep shooting the valk, you can buy a quality pre-chambered barrel for it.
    If you want to shoot a different short action cartridge, then change the bolt head and barrel. Buy new mags and rock on.
    you really don't need to true a savage action, but what you can do, is buy an aftermarket recoil lug that is actually square and a barrel nut that is also square (Northland Shooters Supply).
    Don't bother with that until you are ready to put a new barrel on, as you'll need a go gauge, barrel nut wrench and barrel vise.
     

    Halfnutz

    Sergeant
    Supporter
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Jan 14, 2008
    1,156
    622
    Peoria County, Illinois
    I think there are a lot better options to do what you want to do

    1 being 223 instead
    2 being neither of those platforms
    3 being something you can use forever

    If you're at a $2500 budget for rifle and glass I think you're looking at it the wrong way

    Origin $875
    Criterion (or other) $350
    KRG Bravo $350 or Oryx or XRS
    TT Primary $150
    Vortex Strike Eagle and Rings $700
    Gauges and tools $125

    ^This is a way better start than the factory options, way better.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: b6graham

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    Greg and Fdkay, thank you for the complete replies.

    Maybe I should have led with the fact that I do not have a lump of cash to throw at this all at once. So the glory of a semi-custom action would amount to me blowing my entire initial purchase budget on a paperweight. At least buying a complete rifle gets me shooting something sooner.

    I want to shoot. I need trigger time to improve me. A factory rifle is probably ok for relearning the basics of proper riflemanship. Someone brought up that it's difficult to know if the problem is the rifle or the shooter when it comes to cheap rifles... that was why I was going to send it to a gunsmith. Just make sure this exact rifle is not a lemon.

    As I become a better marksman, I can upgrade what suits my needs, the rifle can evolve with me as I learn.

    Once I figure out what I want and need, I can start piecing together a custom rifle... and still shoot the modified Prairie Hunter whilst I gather parts. Lol. Even when I graduate to mainly shooting the new custom rifle, the Savage 224 Valkyrie can be used to teach my daughters to shoot if they want to learn. And the whole evolution process starts again... but hey, at least the action will be square and trued (maybe I will see a return on that money after all).
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Greg Langelius *

    Halfnutz

    Sergeant
    Supporter
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Jan 14, 2008
    1,156
    622
    Peoria County, Illinois
    Young man, hurrying into a Mossberg or a Savage for a little instant gratification will leave you wanting and sooner than you think.
    That "paper weight" as you call it will always be more valuable than the factory rifle, way more so when it is completed with quality parts. It will provide pride in ownership, and give you many options for learning, growth and flexibility.

    Seems you already made up your mind though.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Jonny_ and b6graham

    b6graham

    MMPRL
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Jul 29, 2014
    5,396
    4,394
    Boston
    I have another suggestion

    I wouldn't discount a good 22 to start with either

    Something like a CZ MTR or an A419 build.

    Get a few bricks of SK Match and go to town

    Meanwhile buy all the components you can find to reload with (they aren't gonna get cheaper assuming you get real pricing which IS available)

    And save to do a custom

    You'll learn a shitload with a 22 and its a hell of a lot cheaper to make mistakes with even high end 22 match ammo than a 224Valk
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Odysseus1911

    Vodoun daVinci

    Pretty Much Bat Shit Crazy.
    PX Member
    Minuteman
  • Dec 17, 2017
    1,708
    2,139
    I don't know jack about .224 Valkyrie. I also don't "compete" except against mice elf so my opinion is probably dog shit. I got all the same advice 4 years ago but purchased a Savage 10 FCP- SR in 6.5 CM and shot it as out-of box with a $200 Vortex Crossfire II scope. Shot sub MOA right-out-da-box.


    AddVortexScope.jpg

    Then as I went I added all kinds of things and removed/sold the stuff I didn't want like the original Accustock and stuff. The Savage POS has never failed to eject and never had a single malfunction. Kept shooting better and better as I gained some degree of experience and kept upgrading (against all Hide advice) until I got here :Savage10FCP_MDTchassisWVortex.jpg

    Still I got nothing but grief telling me I'd *never* recover the $ I had invested but yet at the private club I shoot at I still have people (who compete) offering to buy this factory gun for more than I have paid to build it....they shoot it and it performs. I'm a newbie but building a precision rifle on a Savage barreled action is Childs play with the stuff available. I wonder if they suck so bad why so many top end after market specialists make chassis that fit these abominations if *no one* shoots them or wants them?

    FrankenGun.jpg

    If the OP wants to build a gun on a Savage action I'd highly suggest he do that. If he wants to maximize his investment (it's a fucking gun) or "compete" he might want to get more involved or spend a lot of money (he'll not get back) with a custom build. If he just enjoys shooting and wants to build a real shooter in his chosen caliber he can build a <0.7 MOA gun for less than $2K if he chooses a Savage off-the-shelf rifle and is judicious. Mine rocks and despite multiple options to buy it ( for more than I have invested) I intend to shoot the barrel out and then upgrade.

    I can't outshoot this piece. If I was made of money are seriously invested in competing I'd go for custom. But for now my Savage FrankenGun makes all the others at the range look like schlock in the hands of a newbie and even performs as well (and better) as some guns costing serious money. If yer playing a game buy a custom...if you just want to shoot precision then buy the Savage and trick it out and enjoy - the newer stuff does not suffer from the age old (and tired) problems of extration and ejection and if they do?

    The solution is like $20 worth of springs and commonly available upgrades. Or spend $thousands on a custom. But don't throw the Savages out for shit that happened 20 years ago.

    VooDoo
     

    Odysseus1911

    Piled higher and Deeper
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Feb 14, 2019
    350
    586
    Arkansas
    You like to tinker, like a challenge, like an underdog, and need something to keep you occupied. . .

    Have you thought about wildcatting? Why not just jump into the deep end of the pool and start case-forming with something esoteric like a 224 McDonald?
     

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    I have a nice Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Marlin 880SS 22lr bolt rifle... won it when I was 11yo, upon graduating some hunters' education daycamp thing. It's just shitty factory rifle, though... probably won't ever see a return on my investment (it was free).

    All joking aside, I really should put a new scope on my little Marlin. The fixed 4x Simmons served its purpose well enough, but gave up the ghost years ago. I suppose I could put the iron sights back on it... I am pretty sure I still have them somehwere (24yrs later).

    The funny thing is, I haven't made up my mind, yet. I am just dumbfounded how snobby the reaction to modifying a factory rifle was. Oh my gawd! The fact that this simply cannot be done correctly without a semi-custom action is complete fucking BS. Elitist nonsense... decades and decades worth of damn fine rifles built on factory actions.

    What is ever going to be done with all those factory rifles if people never upgrade them? Trash? You're telling me you would rather see all these old rifles rust into oblivion than SOMEONE spend money on them? It's not your money, why the fuck do you care so much? I get that some of you are trying to steer me away from what may be a common pitfall in this community. But to say it can't be done "correctly" without a semi-custom action is stupid.

    Thank you, Vodoun DaVinci, for the success story and encouragement.

    And yes, Odysseus1911, I have half a dozen wildcats written up that I would love to develope. But I am not shooting anything regularly right meow and just want to get back into shooting before taking the dive off the deep end with custom reamers and custom hydroforming equipment.

    I have a 243 wildcat based on the 556 case, a 257 wildcat based on the PPC case, a 277 wildcat based on the BR/Dasher case, a 284 wildcat based on the Creedmoor case, a 323 wildcat based on the 308 case... probably missing a couple... they all share the Ackley Improved case taper and 40° shoulder, and "per-caliber" necks... and they should register right around 666 on the overbore scale.
     

    Luke G

    Sergeant of the Hide
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Dec 9, 2019
    163
    68
    The issue with your plan of sending it to a gunsmith is you end up spending more money than if you just buy a slightly nicer factory rifle that doesn’t have to be reworked. If you are dead set on the savage and just looking for confirmation bias this probably isn’t the place to go for that. There lots of knowledge on this site from people who went through roughly the same process as you and are trying to help you out in the long run. You say people are being snobby or elitist about modifying a factory rifle but nobody has said anything like that. Multiple people have recommended different factory rifles that you can modify it just has to do with being in the 21st century and not being forced to buy a pos rifle and have the action reworked like they have been doing for “decades and decades” as you said.

    I am not even shooting any customs at the moment and don’t recommend a custom if you don’t want one but still recommend you look at other choices. I have 3 tikkas and a Howa and the only savage in my gun safe feels like a cheaply built toy compared to them. For the same amount of money or less after sending it to get reworked you can get a great factory action. The only reason at all to go with the savage would be because nobody else builds a factory .224 valk rifle. Nobody makes one because there are lots of other cartridges that do just as good of a job.

    In addition to the 22 nosler as fdkay mentioned another good option would be the .223 AI. It will be within about 50fps of the 224 Valkyrie and you would never have to worry about finding brass for it as you can use any .223 brass. You can also shoot standard .223 through it anytime you like and then you kick out nice fireformed brass when done.
     

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    I'm not looking to twist people's answers to fit my own twisted ideals... I was simply asking for what is better between choices "A" and "B"... I didn't ask for alternatives... I listed two options, and asked for opinions between those specific aforementioned choices.

    I am well aware of the ever expanding semi-custom aftermarket... I can't even keep up with all the options these days. I have been out of the scene for a minute, and what used to be a decent little market has grown to the point it doesn't even matter which one you get.

    Whoever has something close to what you want that can ship it tomorrow... THAT ONE... perfect.

    Who gives a $#!+ what name is one the side of the action at this point?

    I get what people are saying about comparatively pushing a bolt across sandpaper. Mass produced factory actions have machining marks from tooling pushed past its prime, built on machines that should have been replaced after they built my father's rifle before me, and were designed from the start with tolerances looser than your mom... *general statement meant to lighten the mood, in no way directed at anyone in particular*

    But at some point, it boils down to being a metal tube that attaches to another metal tube. It's not freaking rocket surgery. As long as the mating surfaces are square and can be assembled without imparting undue stress into the entire system... send it.

    Some people torque the tubes together to 90#, some to 45#... I remember reading an article about a single shot "tactical" rifle built by a guy who screwed the barrels in hand tight specifically not to stress the system... some people use thin recoil lugs, some use fat recoil lugs... none of it actually seems to matter as long as it is done with the proper amount of care and attention to detail.

    That might be slightly over-simplifying things, but I refuse to believe that there is much, if any, real difference between one action to the next once the bolt is closed... unless your action is made out of tin foil, that shit locked. If the chamber is cut clean, the barrel mates to the receiver square, and it sits straight in a rigid stock... the rest is on the shooter.

    As for the 224 Valkyrie being my choice cartridge, I was just explaining this to my brother... pure personal preferrence on case design. I like short, fat cases. It has nothing to do with squeezing extra velocity out of anything. I just like the way the volume of the case is arranged. Pretty sure it has essentially the same case capacity as the 556, anyways. And, in bolt gun, the entire point of the Valkyrie fitting heavy bullets in AR15 magazines is wasted... I could load heavy bullets as long as I wanted in a 223/223AI/22nosler... I just want a Valkyrie.

    Mossberg makes one.

    Savage makes one.

    I intended it to be a relatively simple question... which one, of those two...

    This is probably the wrong forum to ask about gunsmiths that work on factory actions, huh?
     
    Last edited:
    • Like
    Reactions: Vodoun daVinci

    GONE BAD

    Private
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    May 8, 2013
    753
    447
    Portland
    One thing that most people don't know is, Savage has a custom shop and will build about anything you want based on the parts thay can get.
    They contract with chassis builders and now even barrels as in Proof CF.
    In 2013 I called and told them I wanted a 10 fcp-sr but I also added that I wanted it in a 260, right port lefthand bolt, 26" heavy barrel contour, threaded .
    At the time I didn't know the could or would make their target action into a dbm.
    They went way above and beyond!
    I absolutely love this rifle and ill never sell it! It truly is one of a kind
     

    Attachments

    • IMG_20131110_150913_778.jpg
      IMG_20131110_150913_778.jpg
      496.5 KB · Views: 17
    • IMG_20131110_150851_374.jpg
      IMG_20131110_150851_374.jpg
      474.6 KB · Views: 17

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    Up until some of the opinions expressed here, I was under the impression that Savage had a decent reputation for be customized towards accuracy.

    And I have been leaning towards the Savage from the start. The MVP takes Pmags out of the box, has a heavier/fluted barrel, and can still be upgraded later with Savage-pattern barrels/nut... I was wondering if these features were enough to sway the vote in Mossberg's favor.

    Clearly, they are not.

    Vodoun DaVinci, I may pick your brain later, when I get my rifle. I like your rifle. Gone Bad, that is also a slick rifle. I didn't know their custom shop would do such things. Very neat.

    Thank you all for your help. This has been enlightening, to say the least.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Vodoun daVinci

    Greg Langelius *

    Resident Elder Fart
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Aug 10, 2001
    8,866
    4,888
    AZ
    "... A man's just got to recognize his limitations"; and I'm recognizing mine.

    My health is deserting me, and I'm transferring my rifles to worthy youngsters. This past month I've spent 16 days hospitalized for pneumonia, lost 20lb, and am clearly not healthy enough to continue with the sport the way it deserves to be continued.

    ...And honestly, the physical demands leave me tuckered, so it's time to try my hand at something else; my old hobby rubber powered, propeller driven, balsa and tissue free flight model airplanes; something I began in 1950.

    I turn 75 in around two weeks. Time to accept the limitation, and do something I can handle better.

    Better this way, for all involved. I'll still be here, I just won't be doing the shooting part.

    Best fortune to the 'Hide and all who sail on her.

    Greg
     

    Lew Hodge

    Private
    Minuteman
    Jul 26, 2020
    31
    14
    It sounds like you're pretty set on the .224 Valkyrie. I have a fast barrel T/C Encore in 22-250 for heavier slugs, nice gun; when I looked at 22s a little later, the 22BR caught my serious attention, but too late. It is extremely accurate, a dead ringer for the 22-250 in performance and burns so much less powder! Also it is a much shorter cartridge. However, you'll have to go custom all the way as there is no gun that I am aware of that is chambered for the 22BR. Brass may also be an issue. I'd love to have a T/C barrel made for the 22BR, but the cost is prohibitive, considering that I have the 22-250, loading dies, brass and all the rest and would need to duplicate everything in the new caliber! I'm no spring chicken any longer, so the time I have left is a factor.
     

    StLPro2A

    Private
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Jan 27, 2011
    117
    85
    44
    Looking at pulling the trigger on buying a rifle to get me back into reloading/shooting, and I think I have decided on grabbing a 224 Valkyrie bolt rifle for this purpose. This isn't really a discussion on the merits or drawbacks of the chosen cartridge, rather simply the rifle that will be shooting it.

    The Mossberg MVP LR is built off of their 762 action... which is awesome, because I find the little flappy thing used on their 556 actions is suspect, at best. It also allows for a larger ejection port and longer magazines. Speaking of magazines, it uses Pmags, and high quality magazines are always welcome. The MVP LR has a decent stock from the start, with an adjustable comb height and low angle grip. It also has a 20" fluted barrel, which is nice.

    The Savage has a 22" sporter barrel, and their modular AccuFit stock, AccuTrigger, and whatever magazines they use.

    Both/either will be sent to a decent gunsmith to have the action trued, bedded into whatever stock it comes with, and the factory barrel chambered with a JGS reamer and crowned.

    So, knowing that it will be massaged by a competent gunsmith either way, which of the two rifles would you recommend?
    Preface to my thoughts, I have numerous Savages, mostly for grandkids/new shooter friends. Many Mossys all in the shotty arena. Strikes me a little like throwing good money after bad. IMHO, you won't ever recover the smithing expenses on a Mossy or Savage base. Individuals buying those are into cost effectiveness. For me, it is not the kill, it is the hunt. Why not enjoy the hunt for a really, really good deal on a better no-smithing required rifle out of the box? There are many. Everyone on LRH will have their own rationalized spin. You have to be happy with your own choice. Beauty is in the beholder's eye.......rifles, really with scopes, everything we spend our money on. Getting really good deal on a better rifle, you will get the performance...usually better....than you will get on a smithed Mossy or Savage, and be able to recover most all your cost when you decide to upgrade. ......and, if you are into it, enjoy the added prestige/tacticool factor while you enjoy it. No one can see the smithing, most won't appreciate it. Everyone will immediately see the brand name. At least for me, money is an easily replenishable resource....heartbeats not. I'm really big into...Treat myself well, buy once, cry once, get the best ROI on heartbeats, be happy.....ever after. Which ever route you choose, enjoy your choice.
     

    wade2big

    Knowing just enough to be dangerous
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    Sep 16, 2017
    4,411
    4,881
    TEXAS
    If you want the savage then buy the savage and shoot the hell out of the thing. Enjoy it. If you are going to buy the savage and spend $500 or more with a gunsmith doing all the silly stuff you are proposing then don’t. This is what the guys are telling you.
     

    Wiillk

    Sergeant of the Hide
    PX Member
    Minuteman
    May 18, 2020
    372
    394
    If your are stuck on those two rifles, the Savage is the Only choice. Lots of stuff available for the Savage action.

    Now, Don’t know much about the Valkyrie, but getting something to grow with you is gonna be real important. Its kind a like the fellow with a wife who is pregnant with triplets, purchasing a Miata as the families only transportation. It might work for a bit, but otherwise its a dead end; a great little car for two, but hardly able to grow any further.

    Be reasonable, these folks can be a bit rough on the outside at times, but they do know what they are talking about And You Asked.
     

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    Everyone talks about recovering cost... when? What do these words mean in this context? Is it just assumed I will attempt to sell this rifle in the future? WTF are people talking about recovering costs for services?

    Literally 99% of the time I spend money, I consider it gone. I don't flip houses or cars or guns. This isn't an investment, it's a toy for a hobby... a tool, at best. I don't plan on recovering my investment for my DeWalt drill.

    My favorite firearm right meow is my freaking Peoples' Rifle. Lol. Little Simonov Paratrooper rifle in 762x39... it's my favorite because I paid a gunsmith to chop the 16" barrel down, push the front sight post flush in front of the gas block, then permenantly install a pin-on AK74-style muzzle brake... the OD of the pin-on brake matches the OD of the gas block. Whole thing turned out real nice. That completely pointless modification costed me as much as I originally paid for the SKS. Lol.

    But she's my favorite because she is mine. I have yet to find another Simonov like her. She is my favorite because she has been to the gunsmith.

    I am willing to keep gunsmiths in business, because there is something about taking the mundane and making it good. Pride? I don't know, let's call it an effort in sustainability. I enjoy the thought of repurposing and reusing things. We can just say I like to march to the beat of a different drum, don't want what everyone else has. My grandpa omce told me I could fuck up a wet dream... maybe I just do things the hard way?

    Sure, there will ALWAYS be something better. But better is the enemy to good. You'll go broke chasing better, and never catch it.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: Vodoun daVinci

    BamBam27

    Private
    Minuteman
    Feb 5, 2021
    1
    1
    Fort Worth Texas
    Don’t let others dissuade you bro. I’m working on a Valk AR-15. About 180 rounds into it and have it down to .6 MOA groups with factory ammo Just like you I picked it for the challenge. Sure others cartridges would have been easier but what’s the fun in that? The guys out there that have Valks that shoot well love them fiercely. I don’t know much but I know to go with what makes me happy. Cheers. 4DD91494-C3EB-4F58-9BE4-0AAFEEC5F49E.jpeg
     
    • Like
    Reactions: DavidBoren

    DavidBoren

    Private
    Minuteman
    Mar 16, 2021
    61
    30
    Portland, Oregon
    To be fair, this isn't going to be my only gun. I have the SKS, a Rem7600 pump I am having converted from 30-06 to 284win, a Rem700LA that I will also building into a 284win, a bolt action 22lr, a pump action 22lr, a 22lr pistol... might be my only pistol, actually... I have a Rem870 12ga... there's probably more I am forgetting.

    This is just going to be a rifle to get me into long(ish) range shooting. Probably start with factory loads, something like a Hawke Sidewinder or SWFA scope to start, see what that is capable of... see what I am capable of with that.

    Casually shoot factory loads out of a factory rifle whilst I relearn the fundamentals of basic marksmanship... been out of the game for a minute. Little bit rusty, I'm sure. Start gathering up my reloading crap, put it all back together. Buy some dies and anything specific the the Valkyrie I might not have.

    Once I am ready to start reloading all that factory brass I have been shooting, I will have a gunsmith true the action, rechamber the barrel with a trusted reamer, crown it... blah blah blah. With handloading, quality is in my court, so I want to make sure it's me, not the rifle.

    Up until I get my reloading stuffs set up, it's just plinking with a factory rifle to get back in the groove. As my skills as a shooter and reloader improve, the rifle can evolve to match my potential. Maybe one day I am proficient enough to outshoot the reworked factory barrel, so I get a Bartlien. Or whatever.

    Right now, I don't know what suits me best. I don't know what I want. As I start shooting again, I will learn what I need to be more proficient, and I can address those items as they appear.

    Crawl. Walk. Run.

    Sure... I could jump straight to the Apollo/Foundation/Nightforce/Proof... $6000 later, and I am still no better of a marksman than I was yesterday. I don't need a Lambo just to learn how to drive.

    Understand that it has been half a decade since I have shot a firearm. Probably a full decade since I have shot anything further than 100m. I am like a born-again virgin, and more than anything I want practice.

    A factory rifle is both cheaper and can be shot immediately. Gets me practicing sooner. No matter how frequently I would like to shoot, realistically I still will not be shooting all that often... so stocking up on factory 224 Valkyrie ammo between range sessions shouldn't be too difficult. Most ranges around me don't go out past 250m... so it's not like a factory barrel is going to be holding me back at these distances.

    I really didn't expect to have to explain myself like this. I didn't realize that this approach was so controversial. Lol.
     

    Dakota03

    Private
    Minuteman
    Jan 7, 2021
    3
    3
    SW Indiana
    David, I hear ya'.....I like the underdog story, and see where you are coming from. I purchased a Savage 110 Storm a few months ago and really like it. I am in the process of working up loads for metallic silhouette matches, and feel the rifle will not hold me back. Sounds like you have a plan, look online for gunsmiths, contact some until you find one that understands what you want, and proceed with your plan. Like you say, building your project gun and making it work for you sounds like a blast.
     
    • Like
    Reactions: DavidBoren