Long Range Contender? Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision Chassis Rifle — Full Review

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It seems like Savage rifles garner a love hate relationship with much of the shooting population. Some people love them because they’re an affordable rifle with features and a level of performance that hits well above their price point. Savage rifles are known for shooting exceptionally well while possessing a great adjustable trigger and a barrel nut system that makes barrel swaps relatively easy. Still, some people will bag on Savage rifles for the simple fact that something that cheap shouldn’t shoot that well, which is petty jealousy. However, some of the discontent for Savage rifles isn’t completely unwarranted. Depending on the action and year of manufacture, the action screw spacing could be different, which can make getting the right aftermarket stock and bottom metal somewhat trickier than a Remington Model 700. Although these are minor issues when you look at some of the innovative products that Savage has introduced to the market and how that’s influenced other designs over time.

The Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision Rifle is a 1,000 yard capable rifle that can easily fit into a beginner’s budget.

SPECS

  • Type: Bolt-action, detachable magazine
  • Cartridge: 6.5 Creedmoor (also available .308)
  • Barrel Length: 24 in.
  • Overall Length: 46.23 in.
  • Weight: 10.33 lbs.
  • Stock: Synthetic
  • Finish: Matte black
  • Twist: 1:8-in.
  • Capacity: 5+1 rds.
  • Safety: Selector switch
  • MSRP: $1,799

Ergonomics

Right off the bat, the Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision is going to be compared to the current standard by which all other factory chassis guns are judged: the Ruger RPR. There are parallels between these two rifles and some minor differences, so let’s take a look at some of the features that the Ashbury Precision Rifles possess. The chassis itself is from Ashbury Precision Ordnance (APO) based near Ruckersville, Virginia, and it has some aspects that are important in a tactical precision rifle. First of all, it’s black, anything tactical must be black — it’s in the rule book.

The Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision comes with the AccuTrigger, quite possibly one of the best factory rifle triggers on the market.

Similar to the RPR, the Ashbury Precision Rifle has a tubular, M-LOK compatible forend that free floats the 24-inch barrel, which gives the rifle a tremendous amount of flexibility with regards to accessories. You can easily add sling mounts, Picatinny rails for bipods or tripod adapters, and a host of other items. It’s worth noting that the United States military recently tested the strength of the M-LOK design and found it to be almost three times stronger than KeyMod in various situations from a drop test to pull out strength. In the grand scheme of things, the average shooter is probably not going to approach those failure levels, but it may add some piece of mind that the accessory mounting system can take whatever abuse is thrown at it. The magazine well is compatible with AICS-pattern magazines and features a large, easy to manipulate magazine release just forward of the trigger guard.The chassis has APO’s excellent folding mechanism that locks the stock in both the folded and open positions very securely.When it’s in the open position there is no perceptible movement in the mechanism. Just like the RPR, the Ashbury Precision Rifle uses a standard AR-15 grip; however, APO adds a spacer of sorts that makes the grip sit at a more vertical angle compared to a standard A2-like grip. In my experience, this more vertical positioning of the grip is more comfortable to shoot with over a longer period of time. Ashbury also sells other inserts that can be swapped out to adjust the degree to which the grip is canted to match a person’s biomechanics. Thus far both the RPR and Savage APR are running neck and neck with tubular free floating hand guards, modular accessory compatibility, the ability to take detachable magazines, AR-type pistol grips, and stocks that fold to the side.

Factory mounted Picatinny scope base provides a solid mounting platform for long-range optics and mounting systems.

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The chassis folding mechanism locks up like a bank vault when open with zero movement between the two pieces.

However, all those features aside we now come to the stock. I have to say that I am not impressed with the stock chosen to accompany the Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision Rifle. I use the word accompany because it seems like the decision to use a Magpul CTR stock, with no cheek riser, was for it to be nothing other than a temporary companion on the rifle until the end user found something that was more suitable. In my research of this rifle, I’d found some press releases and videos where it was shown or mentioned that the rifle will come with a CTR stock and the cheek riser. I started to wonder if perhaps something was left out of the box when it was sent to me, so I contacted Savage’s customer service department to ask if a cheek riser was supposed to be included. The representative was very kind and quick to confirm that cheek risers are not provided with the rifles. Can you make a stock that was designed to be used on a flattop AR-15 work with a precision bolt action rifle? Sure thing! I went with the least expensive option that’s out there and taped foam to the stock until it was built up enough to where I could get a consistent cheek weld with a full field of view. This is a method that has been used for many years on precision bolt action rifles so it certainly works, however when nearly every other chassis rifle being sold comes with an adjustable cheek piece, the question should be why am I having to do it with this one?

Not easily seen in the photo but certainly felt in the hand, the pistol grip angle is steeper than a standard AR-15 grip and very comfortable.

I’m not focusing on the barreled action because the Savage Model 10 action has been around long enough to be pretty well known.The fluted barrel is 24 inches long with a 1:8-inch twist for the 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge and is also threaded 5/8-24 to accept common muzzle devices and suppressors. The contour of the barrel is medium-heavy, which means it’s a little lighter than Remington Varmint, which suits this rifle just fine to keep weight down, but also help mitigate shot stringing after putting more than a few rounds down range. The action is pretty typical Savage with a 90-degree bolt throw, positive feeding and extraction along with a large bolt knob.The enlarged bolt knob is knurled to assist in providing a substantial amount of grip to help work the action and it’s not much bigger than a Badger Ordnance bolt knob. Long-range shooters should take note that rifle comes with a 0 MOA scope base as opposed to a 20 MOA scope base, which can limit the total elevation adjustment available on some scopes.

Slinging Some Lead

The Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision Rifle combined with the Burris XTRII scope and Area419 brake makes for an excellent long range competition starter package.

Ok so now down to the nitty gritty, where the rubber meets the road, where lead doesn’t lie, where the only thing that matters is you and the target, range time! As per usual I started out bore sighting the rifle and shooting at 100 yards to get an initial zero as well as a feel for the accuracy of the rifle as a whole.I had a selection of ammunition with me from Federal but I decided to use the Federal Fusion 140-grain soft points to get on paper. I wasn’t disappointed at all with this ammunition’s performance, being a soft point load for hunting, it still printed respectable groups. After my first shot on paper, I had to adjust my point of impact, and once I adjusted, the remaining four rounds went into a neat 1-inch cluster a little low of center. To confirm my zero, I slid home another five-round Magpul AICS magazine filled with Federal Fusion and took aim. I’m not perfect, boy I hate to admit that, but I pulled one shot way left, that otherwise completely ruined a nice 5/8-inch group that was taking shape down range. The American Eagle 140-grain boattail

There’s not much to say about the Savage bolt, solid, reliable and often copied. The bolt knob on this model of Savage is enlarged and knurled for a positive grip in all conditions.

hollowpoint (BTHP) was really the stand out performer during this range trip at not just 100 yards but also beyond. I shot two groups back to back with this ammunition that was both ¾-inch center to center, and later I printed a five-round group that was right at ½ inch. For a factory rifle that isn’t bad, but then again this is a Savage, which is well known to have a level of accuracy that often bests more expensive rifles. Shooting at 100 yards doesn’t tell the whole story, and rifles like this one need to have its legs stretched out to realize its full potential.

Peacemaker National Training Center offers some unique opportunities to test a rifle, and I’m fortunate enough to be able to utilize their facilities. After getting my zero, I still didn’t have any solid data for this rifle, but I did have my data charts for my personal 6.5 Creedmoor competition rifle, which gave me a starting point. Not wanting to start small and shoot the closer targets, which would’ve been safe, I immediately went out to 830 yards on a full-size IPSC target. It took a few rounds to walk the shots in, but in no time I was ringing steel pretty consistently. The weight of the Savage Model 10 Ashbury and the ergonomics made it easy to stay on target so I could see hits and misses. Shooting at 830 yards got kind of easy so I made my way over to the large barricade to work on some positional stuff and the rifle didn’t disappoint. There was an array of 16-inch steel plates at 464 yards and consistent hits were again pretty easy due in no small part to the exceptional Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision Rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor and the Armageddon Gear Game Changer bag that I used throughout the day. Shooting the same plates in the prone position yielded some excellent results after I went back to look at the video. On the first plate, I literally stacked two rounds on top of each other before the momentum of the steel caused the target to fall down. I put the last three rounds from the magazine on an adjacent steel plate and from the looks of the video, they created a nice little group that was easily sub-MOA. The whole time the rifle didn’t let me down, I would say that the only time I had a hiccup was when the very dusty conditions made it so that a little extra effort was needed to seat the magazine.The range time that I spent with the rifle yielded some pretty impressive results for a factory rifle shooting factory ammunition, but then again it is a Savage so it’s not entirely surprising.

The author thinks that the thread protector that comes on the Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision rifle is one of the best.

Lasting Impressions

I concluded the day with a pile of brass and a thorough appreciation for the capabilities of this Savage rifle. This segment of the precision rifle market has exploded recently, but the Savage Ashbury Precision Rifle sets itself apart from the competition. The chassis features awesome modularity with the inclusion of an M-LOK compatible forend, one of the better folding mechanisms on a stock and accuracy that could easily make it competitive in matches. For those not a fan of the stock selection, it can easily be replaced. The Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision Rifle is a solid contender for someone looking to get their first precision bolt action rifle. It’s adjustable, modular, super accurate and available in the superb 6.5 Creedmoor. I highly recommend that you check them out.

For more information on the Savage Model 10 Ashbury Precision Rifle click, http://www.savagearms.com/firearms/model/10SavAshburyPrecision.

To purchase a Savage Model 10 on GunsAmerica, click https://www.gunsamerica.com/Search.aspx?Keyword=Savage%20Model%2010.

{ 13 comments… add one }
  • john August 8, 2017, 6:26 pm

    You people can beat this article apart (omg duck tape, this that and the other!!! ) FACT IS this is a great FACTORY rifle!! TALK’S CHEAP!! TRY ONE OUT B/4 YOU JUDGE!!!

  • George August 7, 2017, 12:32 pm

    It costs more than the RPR, has less features (limited to expensive AI mags ONLY) and worst of all, retains the normally excellent Savage safety on top of the action instead of relocating the safety to where it can easily be accessed without breaking your grip.

    All the manufacturers of these chassis systems are doing is dropping their same old rifles into a machined billet of aluminum and upping the price by at least $500. In this case, the price point is well over a $1000 more for an inferior rifle. Ruger did it 100% RIGHT and owns this market. Folding, adjustable stock, multi mag compatibility, good FF HG, decent trigger, easily accessible safety, 20MOA rail on the rifle and more than acceptable accuracy. Combine that with a street price of $1100 and no-one else even comes close. Shame on these copy cats who are apparently incapable of designing a viable competitor.

    • Rocky August 7, 2017, 6:32 pm

      Really? Others are copying Ruger? Ruger AR. Ruger 1911. Mini 14 you cannot sight in with a scope as the barrel turns in to a hot pretzel and all you do is waste ammo. Ever notice that MOST Ruger handguns are tested for accuracy at the 15 yard range and not the standard 25? I have. Ruger spends an ass load on advertising. I know of several Ruger handguns that will not shoot under 4″ at 25 yards and when sent back to the factory, Ruger say they are “within accuracy specs”. B.S.

  • William M. Quirk August 7, 2017, 11:09 am

    If I’m going to 2 grand for a rifle I sure as hell don’t want to have to use Duct tape to make work right .
    Let me know when they come out with a proper cheek piece!

  • BOhio August 7, 2017, 9:15 am

    Ugh, you should get your article edited by a competent practitioner of the craft before it goes live. And given the choice between this and the Tikka (of similar design), make mine Finnish. Lastly, if you don’t conduct and publish a legitimate accuracy protocol ala American Rifleman magazine, then you’re wasting our time.

    • Roy August 7, 2017, 11:16 am

      If he was wasting your time, simply go somewhere else? Troll! “Make mine Finnish” I give no (colorful adjective of your choice) about foreign made rifles! I liked the article it was fairly well written, I enjoyed it!

      • BOhio August 11, 2017, 8:37 am

        Moron. If your simpleton, jingoistic (look it up) brain — what’s left of it — could conceive that there is a big difference between quality, whether of writing or products, then you wouldn’t be regurgitating such stupid statements. Whether the rifle in question is made in the USA, Finland, Germany, or anyplace else, there needs to be a legitimate accuracy testing protocol with it. Or, the author is wasting the readers’ time.

        Maybe you’d be okay with Can and Driver publishing a review about the new, let’s see, for you, probably a Dodge Charger (V6, until you prove you are grown up enough to not burn rubber out of your parents’ driveway en route to Little Caesars) without providing 0-60, quarter mile, braking, skidpad, and other de facto standards of performance. Maybe you’d be okay with the article instead saying “this car is hella cool and looks fast just sitting there and I whomped my buddy in his Kia Rio when we were driving to continuation school”. Maybe that’s enough for you. Too bad.

  • Jerry Clayton August 7, 2017, 9:11 am

    You forgot to mention how the free float fore end moves all over the place. It is poorly designed and not attached to the chassis securely at all! Whoever designed it should never be able to work in design in the future!

  • Jeffrey L. Frischkorn August 7, 2017, 8:01 am

    It would seem that a poorly designed stock without a cheek riser is the work of marketing more than engineering.. In any event, I\’m not a long-ball hitter by any stretch and work to keep my firearms\’ shots at less than 100 yards; yes, I am a student of hunting, not shooting, where the use of archery tackle has compelled me to exercise restraint in just what I use as bragging rights (that I could see a deer\’s whiskers with my own eyes and not through the tube and glass of a \’scope equal in price to the rifle).. That being said, I do admire people willing to devote the time and patience to become good proficient long-range hunters… That\’s just not my bag.. Besides, I\’d rather spend $1,800 (plus the cost of the optics) on some really cool hunting trip.. But whatever floats one\’s boat…

  • KCshooter August 7, 2017, 7:04 am

    I’m a Savage fan, and my XLR has made me a believer in chassis systems, but that stock situation is just a classis example of a company dropping the ball. I don’t really want an adjustable so I’d swap a rifle tube and a PRS were I buying one, but why should I have to? Why isn’t a reasonable stock included here? A pair of 1/2 and 3/4 risers that are specifically made for that CTR buttstock are the bare minimum, I’d think.

  • Mr. James August 7, 2017, 1:25 am

    I thank you, this detailed non overboard intro on a Savage precision rifle offered me the goods and pictures. I watched the rifle under use, that allowed me the in the field visible operation not available at the firearms’ shop or on a news print/electronic reader. I will consider a Savage Precision rifle on my next visit for purchasing.

  • Will Drider August 4, 2017, 10:49 am

    Execellent article and video! I think the absence of a adjustable cheek riser is just enough deterrent to sway potential buyers towards another rifle. Savage needs to fix that if they really want to pull in new customers.

    • bison1913 August 7, 2017, 6:27 am

      That is exactly the reason I did not purchase one. The individuals face has to be a foot long just to be able to rest it on the riser. Pathetic.

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