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Sako A7 or Browning X-bolt

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/30/2011 at 15:59
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I am looking at getting one of these two rifles in 7mm Rem mag, i like both of them a lot and can get them for about the same price of 900 dollars, i just wanted some opinions on which one is the better rifle, or should i just got with there cheaper siblings like the tikka t3 and the a-bolt and call it good.
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Neither is necessarily "better."  Handle them both and pick the one you prefer based on feel, features, and looks.  Both are 3-lug actions.  Both have good triggers.  Chances are either will shoot as well as the other on average.  If you want a synthetic stock, either will fit the bill, but if you want a wood stock, only the X-bolt is available in a walnut stocked version, at least at present.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/30/2011 at 21:28
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Rifledude is spot on, handle both and see what fits YOU best. As for quality, there's not enough difference between the 2 to make it a deciding factor. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/30/2011 at 21:33
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the a7 is nothing more than an over priced t-3 imo. if you want a sako get an 85
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/31/2011 at 09:39
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I've always been a browning fan thought the A7 Tecomate is very interesting.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/02/2011 at 12:50
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Originally posted by dezmick dezmick wrote:

I am looking at getting one of these two rifles in 7mm Rem mag, i like both of them a lot and can get them for about the same price of 900 dollars, i just wanted some opinions on which one is the better rifle, or should i just got with there cheaper siblings like the tikka t3 and the a-bolt and call it good.
 
I can't speak to the A7 extensively, but I will say this:  I LOVE my Hunter X-Bolt .300 WSM! 
 
It is lightweight and kicks like a mule, but it's awful pretty and I can't really ask it to shoot any better!
 
   
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/02/2011 at 19:05
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Originally posted by EchoWhiskeyOne EchoWhiskeyOne wrote:

Originally posted by dezmick dezmick wrote:

I am looking at getting one of these two rifles in 7mm Rem mag, i like both of them a lot and can get them for about the same price of 900 dollars, i just wanted some opinions on which one is the better rifle, or should i just got with there cheaper siblings like the tikka t3 and the a-bolt and call it good.
 
I can't speak to the A7 extensively, but I will say this:  I LOVE my Hunter X-Bolt .300 WSM! 
 
It is lightweight and kicks like a mule, but it's awful pretty and I can't really ask it to shoot any better!
 
   
 
 Have any idea what it weighs all up?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/02/2011 at 22:34
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+1 with rifledude and neilbilly
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/03/2011 at 14:03
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Originally posted by 300S&W 300S&W wrote:

 
 Have any idea what it weighs all up?
 
Right around 7.5lbs.  A little heavier now that I mounted that Hunter Wicked Optics 3-12x42mm on it though.  Not sure how much that scope weighs for sure (if I had to guess 15-16oz).  It's just a scope I'm giving a shot to see how it stacks up.  Optically, it's not bad at all and has great eye relief (at least 4 inches), but more on that later once I get some range time with it.
 
The 300 itself is 6lb11oz and the scope that I had on it until recently was a Weaver Classic K 6x38 which is just under 10oz. 
 
The Weaver website claims that those Classic Ks have 3.1" of eye relief, but I think that might be a liberal 3.1" claim because that scope came AWFUL close to getting me a couple times, so I had to let it go.  My brother now has it on his .308.  Close calls or not, it was a tough little scope that offered me some great groupings on the range and assisted in putting down multiple deer.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/03/2011 at 15:40
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    My S&W by itself goes 6 3/4lbs.  Felt recoil really isn't that bad. Others who've shot it are surprised.  Alot has to do with the Brown Precision stock.  Still,I do like scopes with a decent eye relief on them just in case of having to take a shot in an awkward position.  Right now I've got a 4X Conquest on it.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/03/2011 at 16:11
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/04/2011 at 07:16
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Originally posted by 300S&W 300S&W wrote:

    My S&W by itself goes 6 3/4lbs.  Felt recoil really isn't that bad. Others who've shot it are surprised.  Alot has to do with the Brown Precision stock.  Still,I do like scopes with a decent eye relief on them just in case of having to take a shot in an awkward position.  Right now I've got a 4X Conquest on it.
 
Just out of curiosity, because I am not very familiar with S&W, when did they start making hunting rifles?
 
Specifically in a .300?
 
Maybe you have something custom, either that, or i am 100% confusticated!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/04/2011 at 07:50
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I had a A7 in 300 Win Mag and the magazine was not as long as the max lenght of 300 WM ammo according to reloading manuals so. Consequently it didnt like my reloads and was not reliable. I have had really good luck with Tikka however. Also have had very good luck with Savage. My last Browining will  be the last one I buy worst shooting rifle I have ever owned .375 H&H. I had problems with a Winchester 300WSM Coyote Lite not being able to extract.  Tikka and Savage have proven very consistent and accurate for me. Weatherby and Howa (same same) would also be a good choice.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/04/2011 at 07:58
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  S&W had rifles made for them by Husqvarna (CRF action) I believe in the late 50's?  I've got one in .30-06.  But my .300 is a S&W made by Howa (PF action) which were introduced in the early 80's I believe (bought it in '83). They're,for all intents and purposes,the same as the Weatherby Vanguard.
 
 
 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/05/2011 at 09:17
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Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

the a7 is nothing more than an over priced t-3 imo. if you want a sako get an 85

I agree.  IMHO, most people, or a lot of people have a preference of rifles based on certain features, characteristics and experiences that all add up to a positive or negative experience.  I do not own a Browning or Sako rifle, but do own a Tikka.  From what I have read, the A7 comes close to the Tikka. I have to agree with Rifledude with his recommendation.  You must get a hand on both rifles and see how they feel to you, with a scope of your choice to mount to your shoulder and how it welds to your cheek and so own.  Obviously a short session will not ultimately tell you which is best, but it will point you in the right direction.  Read a lot of articles.  Go to www.gun-tests.com for the most unbiased source of information availabe, imo and www.chuckhawks.com, for more information from his staff's point of view.  Some people like his reviews, others do not.  I personally find his reviews very informative and while I do not agree with everything he or his staff says, I seldom agree totally with any reviewers information or any product.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/05/2011 at 09:24
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Originally posted by Bboy623 Bboy623 wrote:

Browning....."The Best there is"----Bboy623


Yep- Browning, Leupold and Bose stereos are all the worlds greatest. If you want proof of this just read their ads, it says so right there.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/06/2011 at 00:05
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I would probably be considered bias, but I do like my Brownings.... with that said, I'm not a big fan of the X-Bolt.  I do like the A-Bolt.  Also, not a fan of Sako..... mostly because I'm never sure how to pronounce the damn name!  I got my Son an A-Bolt in 30-06 and my buddy has a 30-06 in Tikka T3... I wouldn't give a plug nickel for his Tikka - kicks like a freakin Mule.  My Son's A-Bolt shoots nice!

If the X-Bolt fits you and you don't mind the looks, it should work just fine.

Good luck and let us know what you decide.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/07/2011 at 21:16
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Originally posted by Tip69 Tip69 wrote:

I would probably be considered bias, but I do like my Brownings.... with that said, I'm not a big fan of the X-Bolt.  I do like the A-Bolt.  Also, not a fan of Sako..... mostly because I'm never sure how to pronounce the damn name!  I got my Son an A-Bolt in 30-06 and my buddy has a 30-06 in Tikka T3... I wouldn't give a plug nickel for his Tikka - kicks like a freakin Mule.  My Son's A-Bolt shoots nice!

If the X-Bolt fits you and you don't mind the looks, it should work just fine.

Good luck and let us know what you decide.

I'm just the opposite.  Never did care for the A-Bolt but something felt different when I handled the X-Bolt.  It has turned out to be a very accurate rifle.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2011 at 10:55
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i will say it again, i think the xbolt is a slap in the face towards browning reputation. the abolt is a fine piece of work. the xbolt isnt.Shocked
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2011 at 17:40
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Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

i will say it again, i think the xbolt is a slap in the face towards browning reputation. the abolt is a fine piece of work. the xbolt isnt.Shocked

You are entitled to your opinion....even if it is wrong!Big Grin

Seriously though, I don't see how the A-Bolt is a "fine piece of work", but the X-Bolt is a "slap in the face".  Please explain the mechanical differences between the two rifles that make the A-Bolt so much better?  I'm not talking about looks here...as looks of a rifle are a personal thing.

The X-Bolt has a better factory trigger, a better factory recoil pad, an excellent safety with a bolt unlock button, and a simpler magazine system than what is on the A-Bolt.

Both the A-Bolt and X-Bolt are factory glass bedded, both rifles have free floating barrels, are hand chambered, with target crowns, and both rifles have a 60 degree bolt lift.


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2011 at 17:48
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2011 at 18:44
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Originally posted by 270XBolt 270XBolt wrote:

Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

i will say it again, i think the xbolt is a slap in the face towards browning reputation. the abolt is a fine piece of work. the xbolt isnt.Shocked

You are entitled to your opinion....even if it is wrong!Big Grin

Seriously though, I don't see how the A-Bolt is a "fine piece of work", but the X-Bolt is a "slap in the face".  Please explain the mechanical differences between the two rifles that make the A-Bolt so much better?  I'm not talking about looks here...as looks of a rifle are a personal thing.

The X-Bolt has a better factory trigger, a better factory recoil pad, an excellent safety with a bolt unlock button, and a simpler magazine system than what is on the A-Bolt.

Both the A-Bolt and X-Bolt are factory glass bedded, both rifles have free floating barrels, are hand chambered, with target crowns, and both rifles have a 60 degree bolt lift.



 its all minor stuff that adds up for me. none of it is really mechanical. i dont like the  bases , i like to make my own choices not have them made for me. the recoil pad imo isnt an issue since its easily replaced. that clip is ridiculous, at least make it out of metal, simpler and cheaper isnt better. the safety really is the same as the abolts, which i hate either way. i dont like the bolt release being incorporated with a safety like this either, just personal preference.



Edited by pyro6999 - February/08/2011 at 20:50
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/08/2011 at 21:54
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Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

Originally posted by 270XBolt 270XBolt wrote:

Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

i will say it again, i think the xbolt is a slap in the face towards browning reputation. the abolt is a fine piece of work. the xbolt isnt.Shocked

You are entitled to your opinion....even if it is wrong!Big Grin

Seriously though, I don't see how the A-Bolt is a "fine piece of work", but the X-Bolt is a "slap in the face".  Please explain the mechanical differences between the two rifles that make the A-Bolt so much better?  I'm not talking about looks here...as looks of a rifle are a personal thing.

The X-Bolt has a better factory trigger, a better factory recoil pad, an excellent safety with a bolt unlock button, and a simpler magazine system than what is on the A-Bolt.

Both the A-Bolt and X-Bolt are factory glass bedded, both rifles have free floating barrels, are hand chambered, with target crowns, and both rifles have a 60 degree bolt lift.



 its all minor stuff that adds up for me. none of it is really mechanical. i dont like the  bases , i like to make my own choices not have them made for me. the recoil pad imo isnt an issue since its easily replaced. that clip is ridiculous, at least make it out of metal, simpler and cheaper isnt better. the safety really is the same as the abolts, which i hate either way. i dont like the bolt release being incorporated with a safety like this either, just personal preference.


Fair enough and I agree with you on the bases....BUT....Warne, Talley, Leupold, Weaver, Burris, and DNZ Mounts all make bases for the X-Bolt, so there are different options available.  However, I'm not sure why Browning did not just stick with the same pattern the A-Bolt uses. 

As for the recoil pad....the Inflex Recoil pad on the X-Bolt works really well.  With the price of rifles today and the technology, a recoil pad should not need to be changed on a new rifle, IMO.

Now for the rotary magazine....it is one smooth feeding magazine.....has plenty of room to really set those bullets out if you reload......and did I mention how smooth it feeds?  As a LEO I carry polymer magazines from Glock everyday....never had a problem with them......and they do not rust.

If you don't like the tang safety, then I can understand that.  Some like them others don't.  I personally like them as I can operate them much easier than a Model 70 style safety.  The bolt unlock button on the X-Bolt is an added bonus for me.  I like the option of having the bolt locked while hunting but being able to unlock the bolt and remove the chambered round while the rifle is still on safe.

  


Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/09/2011 at 08:33
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Originally posted by 270XBolt 270XBolt wrote:


As for the recoil pad....the Inflex Recoil pad on the X-Bolt works really well.  With the price of rifles today and the technology, a recoil pad should not need to be changed on a new rifle, IMO.
 
Exactly!  I have already stated that without the Inflex pad on the X-Bolt, my .300WSM would be VERY unpleasant to sight in.  The factory installed recoil pad does an EXCEPTIONAL job of keeping many from developing a flinch where after a few rounds without a good recoil pad, the decision to incorporate a recoil pad at a later time and date (for extra coin, mind you) onto a rifle with recoil like many, especially magnum calibers, can produce might have been too late and a flinch already developed. 
 
Many rifle manufacturers make rifles really lightweight these days out of carry convenience.  I am no punk to recoil; it has just never bothered me.  But my Stevens 200 chambered in .270 kicks like a dang MULE for what it is and that "recoil pad" used at the Savage factory does NOTHING to hamper the felt recoil.  I haven't and won't develop a flinch with this .270, but that doesn't mean that many others won't.  I don't plan on handing this rifle down to my son for a "first deer gun" because of the fear of him anticipating recoil and making a bad shot on an animal where as I am sure that an X-Bolt .270 with the Inflex wouldn't be a youth issue at all.

Originally posted by 270XBolt 270XBolt wrote:


Now for the rotary magazine....it is one smooth feeding magazine.....has plenty of room to really set those bullets out if you reload......and did I mention how smooth it feeds?  As a LEO I carry polymer magazines from Glock everyday....never had a problem with them......and they do not rust.
 
Again, I feel that you hit the nail on the head.  The mag is VERY smooth, as already stated, both from a feed perspective as well as engaging and disengaging from the rifle.  A metal mag would simply be one more noisy piece needing maintenance in order to keep it from rusting.

Originally posted by 270XBolt 270XBolt wrote:


The bolt unlock button on the X-Bolt is an added bonus for me.  I like the option of having the bolt locked while hunting but being able to unlock the bolt and remove the chambered round while the rifle is still on safe.

Spot on...nothing more really needs to be said other than X-Bolts are, as you said, VERY accurate rifles.  Somebody had said that they thought they didn't look nice, but I for one think that they are a very pretty rifle.
 
Looks are subjective...some like blondes, some like brunettes.   




Edited by EchoWhiskeyOne - February/09/2011 at 08:39
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/09/2011 at 11:56
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For what it's worth... the Sako A7 is simply the M75 action with a round receiver top, threaded mount base attachment instead of the tapered receiver dovetails, a plunger ejector instead of fixed blade, a plastic magazine instead of metal, a polymer bolt shroud, and only available in stainless metal and synthetic stock.  The bolt body is slightly larger in diameter than the 75 bolt.  Other than that, Sako actually uses the same basic receiver blank as was used for the 75, and it uses the same trigger assy and barrel.  It's essentially a modified version of a 75 to cut costs.  Setting aside the different materials in the shroud and magazine, and with the exception of the plunger ejector and different scope mounting system, it is mechanically identical to the M75, and is much more similar to the 75 than it is Tikka.

The Browning X Bolt mechanically differs from the A-bolt mainly in the magazine design and the different lug orientation.  The X Bolt has the orientation of the 3 lugs rotated 60-deg from the A bolt, so that one lug rides in the receiver at the 12:00 position when the bolt is opened, the same as other popular 3 lug actions.  This enabled Browning to get rid of the non-rotating bolt body sleeve they used on the A Bolt, which was necessary to keep one of the lugs from dragging on the top of the magazine.  This also saved some weight vs. the A Bolt action.  The bolt unlock feature at the root of the bolt handle is a very clever feature IMO.  The 4 bolt base mount pattern I can take or leave.  It does make a stronger mount attachment, as if that's ever been a real issue with 2-screw mounting systems. The magazine is smoother feeding than the A bolt mainly because cartridges feed directly from the center rather than from staggered side to side positions.  The design is a great concept, except that I personally despise the over-use of plastic on firearms, admittedly based on no more logic than I prefer the use of steel and aluminum for purely emotional reasons.  My main personal gripes with the X bolt are purely cosmetic.  I don't like the way they integrated the bottom of the magazine with the stock and the excessive "framing" around the magazine taking up so much stock space, and I don't like the zig-zagging "style line" they use in the buttstock.
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