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Old 09-16-2020, 08:06 AM
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Default Kimber Montana vs sako finnlight

I've been looking at picking up a sako finnlight. I was just waiting to see one in my caliber. And then yesterday a post about a kimber got my attention. So now I found a sako finnlight and a kimber Montana, with the green fiberglass stock, both in my caliber for pretty much the same price.

I've heard a lot of love for these kimbers, and heard about a few issues. I don't know too much about them. And to be honest I don't know a great deal about the sakos either.

What do you guys think about a comparison of the two rifles. Side by side value wise. With whatever modifications they may need to correct any issues. I know there are used rifles out there but I'd prefer to buy new. These rifles are in my price range and I'd be buying a new scope also.
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Old 09-16-2020, 08:49 AM
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I would go for the Finnlight if it were me. No history of accuracy issues and butter smooth action.
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Old 09-16-2020, 09:02 AM
JohnB JohnB is offline
 
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Sako
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Old 09-16-2020, 09:28 AM
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I have been through my fair share of rifles. Personally I have had both of the previous guns and have a few items on each. The montana is a great rifle, some shoot great, some shoot okay... for the price could be better. Very tough to shoot a lightweight rifle really accurately, if you are not used to this it takes practice. The Finnlight is heavier and balanced nicely. There has been ejection issues with some of them. The stock finish gets marked up pretty easily for a hunting rifle, which the Kimber does not.

For my money... I would look really hard at the Christensen arms Mesa. I have had all three and by far prefer the Mesa as fit and finish is much better and the weight is balanced very well. I have two different caliber sand they both shoot better than expected.
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Old 09-16-2020, 09:56 AM
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Accuracy due to how light the Montana comes in at was one of the issues I was concerned about. Now this is something i could train myself to overcome. I might want something a bit easier to shoot right out of the box. I'll take a look at the Mesa.
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Old 09-16-2020, 10:35 AM
360hunt 360hunt is offline
 
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Default Kimber/Sako

I own both. Kimber is a nice rifle but the Sako simply out classes it.
Accuracy has been amazing for my Sako 85 and 75.
Sighted my 338 yesterday one ragged whole.
Buy the fin
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Old 09-16-2020, 10:44 AM
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Every Montana I had was a sub moa gun, with a 7-08 being a genuine 3 shot - 1/2" gun. So accuracy for me is a wash. It comes down to how light you really want, and whether you are ok with the Montana's blind mag. Not all are.

I love em both.

Recoil is much better in the Montanas in my experience. Bigger Finnlights have a fair bit of muzzle jump for me anyhow.
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Old 09-16-2020, 10:54 AM
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I have had 3 montana's... 338 federal and 2 300wsm's ... all about an inch +/- ... they are purpose driven and no frills... if you want the ability to pound tent pegs get the montana ... all the sako's i have had were better in the accuracy dept

Last edited by stob; 09-16-2020 at 10:54 AM. Reason: wording change
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Old 09-16-2020, 10:54 AM
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Every Montana I had was a sub moa gun, with a 7-08 being a genuine 3 shot - 1/2" gun. So accuracy for me is a wash. It comes down to how light you really want, and whether you are ok with the Montana's blind mag. Not all are.

I love em both.

Recoil is much better in the Montanas in my experience. Bigger Finnlights have a fair bit of muzzle jump for me anyhow.
7mm08 will be the caliber I go with. I'm not going to be doing any mountain climbing with it so the weight difference would be on the lower end of the importance scale. If I decide to do so in a few years I can always buy something to suit those needs at that time. And I would be ok loading from the top.
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Old 09-16-2020, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Savage Bacon View Post
7mm08 will be the caliber I go with. I'm not going to be doing any mountain climbing with it so the weight difference would be on the lower end of the importance scale. If I decide to do so in a few years I can always buy something to suit those needs at that time. And I would be ok loading from the top.
For me, they are both excellent guns and no ejection issues with short action Sakos. Get the brand you have never had. Variety is the spice of life.n PM me with your cell # if you wanna talk. There are some things I would tell you, but take too long to type.
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Old 09-16-2020, 11:21 AM
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For me, they are both excellent guns and no ejection issues with short action Sakos. Get the brand you have never had. Variety is the spice of life.n PM me with your cell # if you wanna talk. There are some things I would tell you, but take too long to type.
My 270wsm had bad ejection issues.
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Old 09-16-2020, 11:29 AM
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My 270wsm had bad ejection issues.

Well you learn something new each day. The 30-06 family is the one with well known issues. I think 85s are way overpriced myself. I've had a half dozen, but won't be getting anymore.
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Old 09-16-2020, 11:35 AM
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Yep, It was my first Sako 85 and my last.
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Old 09-16-2020, 11:41 AM
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Kimber hands down over the 85 finn

Kimber is true CRF

Kimber is lighter with a full size barrel

Kimber has a real stock (as in rigid)

Kimber doesn't have ejection issues

Kimber is more accurate

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Old 09-16-2020, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by sns2 View Post
Well you learn something new each day. The 30-06 family is the one with well known issues. I think 85s are way overpriced myself. I've had a half dozen, but won't be getting anymore.
Depends how low you mount your scope. My 270wsm was on the edge of giving issues as the odd piece of brass was hitting the turret. Swapped out the extractor and spring and no more issues. Looks like it is more of a tolerance issue due to varying rim thicknesses on different calibers. Some people just gave the extractor a tap to compress it a hair more.

My Kimber is much smoother than my sako. Can't comment on accuracy as they both are much more accurate than I am.

From another forum:
"I know this is now an old thread, however, I can share how I resolved the Sako ejection issue that seems to plauge a number of 75 and 85 model Sako rifles and hope others may find this useful.

How I fixed my Sako 75 ejection issue:
I resolved this problem in about 1 hour and at no cost.


In my experience, long actions (30-06, 270, etc) seem more commonly affected whereas short actions (.308, .243) appear to be less affected. My Sako 75 .308 has give many years of service without ever failing to eject cases perfectly.

In contrast, my Sako 75 .30-06 used to eject the case vertically upwards into the base of the scope and occasionally it would come to rest in the magazine on top of the next round which was really frustrating. I searched the internet for a solution without success. So I decided to do something about it myself.

I tried .30-06 cases in my Sako 75 .308 rifle and still had the same ejection issues whereas it works perfectly with .308 cases.
I tried 9.3x62 cases in my Sako 75 .30-06 rifle and only occasionally had ejection issues.
I tried .308 cases in my Sako 75 .30-06 rifle and had no ejection issues, so I knew it must be something to do with the cartridge.

The rim thickness of a .308 case is 1.37mm
The rim thickness of a 9.3x62 case is 1.30mm
The rim thickness of a .30-06 case is 1.2mm

There seems to be a relationship between the rim thickness and ejection issues i.e. thinner rims lead to ejection issues. If you seat a case in the bolt face you will see there is more slop for cases with a thinner rim. Seems Sako has gone for the 'one extractor size fits all' approach - presumably to save costs.

So..... I needed to reduce the amount of slop that the extractor held the .30-06 case so the extractor would have a tighter grip on the case (at least as tight as it holds a .308 case). My options were:
1) either build up the under-side lip of the extractor;
2) seat the extractor deeper in the bolt somehow, or,
3) compress the extractor to reduce its overall length.
Options 1 and 2 seemed very difficult, so I chose option 3.

I removed the extractor from the bolt face of my .30-06 and with all the skill of a high-precision swiss watch maker.....I beat it with a hammer! Actually, I placed the extractor vertically with the flat near the round bit on the sharp right-angle edge of an anvil and used a hammer to very carefully slightly compress the extractor so when fitted back into the bolt, the extractor had a tight grip on the cartridge case.

If you do this make sure to closely monitor the amount you compress the extractor with a good set of calipers and repeatedly try the extractor in the bolt. If you overdo it the cartridge will not align straight with the chamber, and.....you will need to buy a new extractor - not cheap. Also make sure the hammer impacts the extractor square on - not on an angle. Hammering may create a very small burr on the top of the claw and you may need to gently file a small amount off the inner top edge of the extractor claw so the case slides easily into the bolt face.

Actually this is a really easy process and can be done by anyone with basic handyman abilities (i.e. anyone who can use a hammer). The extractor does not look any different compared to an unaltered extractor - it's just compressed a by a couple of hundred microns.

My .30-06 now extracts and ejects cases perfectly EVERY time. Cases eject horizontally rather than vertically and NEVER hit the scope anymore.

Essential tools for this task are: a hammer, a vice or anvil with a sharp right angle edge, a set of calipers, and a bandaid for when you hit your thumb.

Caveat: this worked very well for my rifle but may not work for everyone - attempt it at your own risk. Good luck.

I wonder if the variability between rifles comes from the process they use to put the rifles together (I don't know, but food for thought):

If the bolt extractor hole and channel is milled into the bolt head and THEN the barrelled action is correctly head-spaced by milling material out of the bolt face. This would account for the variability in how well the extractor holds the cartridge case, and the variability between rifles.
i.e. good design with incorrect implementation. Some Sako 75 rifles a have this ejection problem, however, the issue is allegedly more prevalent with sako 85 rifles. Beretta acquired Sako in 2000. The Sako model 75 persisted until introduction of the model 85 in 2006, so later model 75's might be affected by the ejection issue.
In my experience the first thing you do after taking over a rival company is look at way to cut costs and improve profitability.

Hence what I believe should be done is adjustment of the extractor to each rifle. This could be achieved by my method (crude but effective - see above), or better still, having a range of extractor sizes and fitting the correct size extractor to each bolt AFTER it is head-spaced, or even better, drill/mill the extractor hole and channel after the barrelled action has been head-spaced."
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Old 09-16-2020, 02:14 PM
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Iíve had five kimbers, still have four and have never had a hard time getting one to shoot. For Montanaís Iíve got a 30-06 and a .338 win mag.







All groups are 3 shots at 100 off a bipod.

The Ď06 with 130 Barnes





The Ď06 again




My .338 with 225 ttsx




My .243 and 7mm-08 shoot about the same. Itís my opinion that most of the accuracy issues are from guys who canít shoot a light rifle. Iím sure some of the problems are truly with the rifle but of the five Iíve owned they were all shooters. I did have a bent firing pin with random ftf events once and korth sent me a new firing pin to repair it. Iím not sure how it got bent as it was like that when I got it. Once the pin was replaced I never had another issue.
I canít speak for the sako as Iíve never owned the one your asking about.
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Old 09-16-2020, 02:30 PM
360hunt 360hunt is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewM View Post
Depends how low you mount your scope. My 270wsm was on the edge of giving issues as the odd piece of brass was hitting the turret. Swapped out the extractor and spring and no more issues. Looks like it is more of a tolerance issue due to varying rim thicknesses on different calibers. Some people just gave the extractor a tap to compress it a hair more.

My Kimber is much smoother than my sako. Can't comment on accuracy as they both are much more accurate than I am.

From another forum:
"I know this is now an old thread, however, I can share how I resolved the Sako ejection issue that seems to plauge a number of 75 and 85 model Sako rifles and hope others may find this useful.

How I fixed my Sako 75 ejection issue:
I resolved this problem in about 1 hour and at no cost.


In my experience, long actions (30-06, 270, etc) seem more commonly affected whereas short actions (.308, .243) appear to be less affected. My Sako 75 .308 has give many years of service without ever failing to eject cases perfectly.

In contrast, my Sako 75 .30-06 used to eject the case vertically upwards into the base of the scope and occasionally it would come to rest in the magazine on top of the next round which was really frustrating. I searched the internet for a solution without success. So I decided to do something about it myself.

I tried .30-06 cases in my Sako 75 .308 rifle and still had the same ejection issues whereas it works perfectly with .308 cases.
I tried 9.3x62 cases in my Sako 75 .30-06 rifle and only occasionally had ejection issues.
I tried .308 cases in my Sako 75 .30-06 rifle and had no ejection issues, so I knew it must be something to do with the cartridge.

The rim thickness of a .308 case is 1.37mm
The rim thickness of a 9.3x62 case is 1.30mm
The rim thickness of a .30-06 case is 1.2mm

There seems to be a relationship between the rim thickness and ejection issues i.e. thinner rims lead to ejection issues. If you seat a case in the bolt face you will see there is more slop for cases with a thinner rim. Seems Sako has gone for the 'one extractor size fits all' approach - presumably to save costs.

So..... I needed to reduce the amount of slop that the extractor held the .30-06 case so the extractor would have a tighter grip on the case (at least as tight as it holds a .308 case). My options were:
1) either build up the under-side lip of the extractor;
2) seat the extractor deeper in the bolt somehow, or,
3) compress the extractor to reduce its overall length.
Options 1 and 2 seemed very difficult, so I chose option 3.

I removed the extractor from the bolt face of my .30-06 and with all the skill of a high-precision swiss watch maker.....I beat it with a hammer! Actually, I placed the extractor vertically with the flat near the round bit on the sharp right-angle edge of an anvil and used a hammer to very carefully slightly compress the extractor so when fitted back into the bolt, the extractor had a tight grip on the cartridge case.

If you do this make sure to closely monitor the amount you compress the extractor with a good set of calipers and repeatedly try the extractor in the bolt. If you overdo it the cartridge will not align straight with the chamber, and.....you will need to buy a new extractor - not cheap. Also make sure the hammer impacts the extractor square on - not on an angle. Hammering may create a very small burr on the top of the claw and you may need to gently file a small amount off the inner top edge of the extractor claw so the case slides easily into the bolt face.

Actually this is a really easy process and can be done by anyone with basic handyman abilities (i.e. anyone who can use a hammer). The extractor does not look any different compared to an unaltered extractor - it's just compressed a by a couple of hundred microns.

My .30-06 now extracts and ejects cases perfectly EVERY time. Cases eject horizontally rather than vertically and NEVER hit the scope anymore.

Essential tools for this task are: a hammer, a vice or anvil with a sharp right angle edge, a set of calipers, and a bandaid for when you hit your thumb.

Caveat: this worked very well for my rifle but may not work for everyone - attempt it at your own risk. Good luck.

I wonder if the variability between rifles comes from the process they use to put the rifles together (I don't know, but food for thought):

If the bolt extractor hole and channel is milled into the bolt head and THEN the barrelled action is correctly head-spaced by milling material out of the bolt face. This would account for the variability in how well the extractor holds the cartridge case, and the variability between rifles.
i.e. good design with incorrect implementation. Some Sako 75 rifles a have this ejection problem, however, the issue is allegedly more prevalent with sako 85 rifles. Beretta acquired Sako in 2000. The Sako model 75 persisted until introduction of the model 85 in 2006, so later model 75's might be affected by the ejection issue.
In my experience the first thing you do after taking over a rival company is look at way to cut costs and improve profitability.

Hence what I believe should be done is adjustment of the extractor to each rifle. This could be achieved by my method (crude but effective - see above), or better still, having a range of extractor sizes and fitting the correct size extractor to each bolt AFTER it is head-spaced, or even better, drill/mill the extractor hole and channel after the barrelled action has been head-spaced."

You made me laugh out loud when you said you kimber mauser action was smoother the a Sako. Both nice rifles but no mauser will be smoother
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Old 09-16-2020, 04:48 PM
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this a tough call, i love sako and still haven't bought my first kimber yet but they've been so close and on my radar a long time

if either of them offer a 6.5 Grendel i'll probably have to try both, my lean to the kimber for the sheep work and the sako for all around work where detach mag comes in handy (i call for coyotes a lot, the kimber wouldn't be coming along for that, the sako would be more do all for me)

a friend tried a montana and was one of the unfortunate few back in times when it was more common that you could run into those that didn't shoot, that one went down the road, loved handling it, it seems to be that they've rectified things since then and it's tough to find one that doesn't shoot (good thing, as they are sweet rifles)

i think their montana in grendel with a 20"-22" tube would be one of the best sheep/goat/caribou mountain rigs you could set up, leupy 2.5x8x36 modded with a cds-zl, i'll keep waiting(and dreaming) and shooting my cz/ruger/howa's
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Old 09-16-2020, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by 360hunt View Post
You made me laugh out loud when you said you kimber mauser action was smoother the a Sako. Both nice rifles but no mauser will be smoother
Give the one I have a try if your in Calgary. You will see what I mean.
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Old 09-16-2020, 05:43 PM
NewGuard84 NewGuard84 is offline
 
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Finnlight in short action is my vote, but I am happily biased

Now for the next challenge: Which glass will do it justice?

Congrats in advance on a great rifle, whichever you choose.

Last edited by NewGuard84; 09-16-2020 at 05:56 PM.
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Old 09-16-2020, 06:16 PM
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Give the one I have a try if your in Calgary. You will see what I mean.
I own a few kimbers. Very nice rifles, actions are bullet proof. 6.5x55, 338 win and cred.

They are refined. They are better then your ruger m77 and win model 70.
But and that's a huge but......
Bench rest a sako. Over time you'll understand.
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Old 09-16-2020, 06:52 PM
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I wholeheartedly vouch for the Sako Finnlight. Not nearly as light as the Montana but if the shooter does his/her part they are going to hit what they are shooting at on the first shot. Excellent accuracy and very smooth action. The stock is nothing special and the surface does get marked easily but it is not a rifle intended to be treated like AAA Walnut. The ejection issues are reported much in the same manner as pig sightings in northern Alberta, there are a few but one sighting misreported as hundreds of sightings after the telephone game starts.

As for Kimber, I never had much positive to say. Although they feel nice and light, that is where the positive ends. Never found one that would shoot consistently. Had a few Montanas, the best of which shot 3 MOA. I found problems with the machining and parts that broke. Overall, simply not impressed. And for the parts that broke, there was no follow through from Kimber in relation to warranty or repair here in Canada.

Others have mentioned the Christensen rifles, but they really are nothing more than an accurized Remington. A buddy has one. Great rifle but way overpriced. I have done much better doing my own work with a 700 SPS, a Talley trigger, and an HS or B&C stock.
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Old 09-16-2020, 08:45 PM
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Thanks everyone for all the info. And sns2 for putting up with my questions! I'm having trouble finding the kimber Montana in 7mm08, which is what I'm looking for. The sako is still looking good. And the Christensen arms mesa, which I hadn't considered, is also looking like a decent rifle. At about $500 cheaper than the finnlight. Which would really help with the scope budget. Due to availability I'm thinking kimber is out of the race. For now.
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Old 09-16-2020, 10:34 PM
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I do like the three Sako rifles I have. I have two 85ís and a 75. My oldest 85 is a .260, shoots lights out. I shoot metallic silhouette with that rifle. The other 85 is a .308, which shoots equally well. That one I have a custom fibreglass stock from McMillan, and glass bedded by a local gun smith. I shot it last weekend at 300 y with a 1.75Ē group, from 10 shots, love that gun.

Now my 75, I bought it with a burnt out barrel in .260. I had my gun smith build me a new barrel from a blank I bought of a friend in the US. I had a reamer in 6.5 x 47 Lapua. That rifle shoots very very well.

I would go with SAKO any day. They are awesome guns for the money.
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Old 09-17-2020, 12:33 AM
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Iíve had o few of both and hands down Iíll take the Kimber 7 days a week. As far as accuracy is concerned thereís no difference however free hand shots are easier to do with the Montana, they balance better.
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Old 09-17-2020, 09:13 AM
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I always come across good used deals on Finnlights, anywhere from $1400-2000 depending on use. I have seen some damn good condition Finnlights in the $1600 plus or minus $100.
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Old 09-17-2020, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Savage Bacon View Post
I've been looking at picking up a sako finnlight. I was just waiting to see one in my caliber. And then yesterday a post about a kimber got my attention. So now I found a sako finnlight and a kimber Montana, with the green fiberglass stock, both in my caliber for pretty much the same price.

I've heard a lot of love for these kimbers, and heard about a few issues. I don't know too much about them. And to be honest I don't know a great deal about the sakos either.

What do you guys think about a comparison of the two rifles. Side by side value wise. With whatever modifications they may need to correct any issues. I know there are used rifles out there but I'd prefer to buy new. These rifles are in my price range and I'd be buying a new scope also.

If you are looking for light, accurate and reasonable price, check out the Barret Fieldcraft. They are pretty close to a NULA at less than half the price. Of the two you started with Kimber does make a lefty so never had one. The Sakos I have owned were all good shooting rifles, but I don't own any of them presently. I do have a Weatherby MKV Ultra light in 257 Bee that is about the same price and I actually like it better than the Sakos.
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Old 09-17-2020, 02:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean2 View Post
If you are looking for light, accurate and reasonable price, check out the Barret Fieldcraft. They are pretty close to a NULA at less than half the price. Of the two you started with Kimber does make a lefty so never had one. The Sakos I have owned were all good shooting rifles, but I don't own any of them presently. I do have a Weatherby MKV Ultra light in 257 Bee that is about the same price and I actually like it better than the Sakos.
Thanks Dean I'll look into those as well. The boss is a lefty too. This rifle will be an upgrade for myself. Next one will be a lefty to upgrade hers. Mine is a ruger American and hers is a savage axis 2. Both of which are working but we do want to step it up a bit.
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Old 09-17-2020, 05:17 PM
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I have had the Sako Finnlite (270 win) for 3 years and love it.


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Old 09-17-2020, 11:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean2 View Post
If you are looking for light, accurate and reasonable price, check out the Barret Fieldcraft. They are pretty close to a NULA at less than half the price. Of the two you started with Kimber does make a lefty so never had one. The Sakos I have owned were all good shooting rifles, but I don't own any of them presently. I do have a Weatherby MKV Ultra light in 257 Bee that is about the same price and I actually like it better than the Sakos.
Barrett has discontinued the Fieldcraft for the time being. Something about a military contract taking up production space. Although they might not have been selling like they hoped. Glad I got mine when I did. Very nice rifle.
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