The futuristic lines of the Savage B22 FV-SR .22 LR rifle weren’t enough to put one on the set of Valerian or Blade Runner 2049. But the updated bolt gun’s certainly more modern-looking than my three venerable Ruger 10/22s. What intrigued me most about the Savage B22 FV-SR: it includes Savage’s Accutrigger. Is that much-touted bangswitch is all it’s hyped up to be?
While certainly functional and comfortable (even more so than a 10/22), the B22’s synthetic stock could benefit from grip areas with more aggressive texture molded in. Given my sweaty hands in Texas Hill Country summer heat, the six pound B22 got a tad slick.
Savage saw fit to include sling studs fore and aft, but didn’t add a recoil pad…not that a soft-shooting .22 rifle will be pounding your shoulder. Still, a rubber recoil pad would help with a solid mount.
I borrowed Jeremy’s highly specialized HammerMill Free-Float-o-Meter and found that, much like competitive .22LR rifles in this price range, the B22’s barrel is not free floated. My expectation, though, was that the Savage’s stout barrel is stout wouldn’t be affected by any contact it makes with the stock. More on that later.
A knurled knob ensures a sure grip on the B22’s smooth-cycling bolt.
Savage’s Accutrigger is known for its light pull and clean, predictable break. That’s down to its relatively small sear engagement area.
Typically a small engagement area increases the risk of firing if dropped or given a significant jolt, but Savage has engineered a simple solution to this potential problem. The blade safety integrated into the trigger blocks any potential accidental sear movement.
When the blade safety is depressed, the sear is allowed to move once the trigger is pulled. The Accutrigger’s pull is clean, light and reliable. I’m officially a fan.
As Ruger did with my 10/22’s, Savage chose 10-round rotary magazines to feed the B22. Given the follower/feed lip alignment, it take some attention to slide each round in, but practice makes perfect. Just insert each cartridge at a slight angle, push the feed lips with the rim of the round, then rotate into place. You’ll get used to it.
The beefy scope rail Savage includes is firmly attached to the receiver with four screws. The rail extends past the end of the receiver about an inch and a half. That extra rail space gives the shooter a lot of flexibility in mounting optics.
The the “SR” in the B22 FV-SR model designation stands for suppressor ready. The heavy 16.25-inch barrel has a 1:16 twist with 1/2-28 threads and a generous shoulder. The rifle makes an ideal host for a suppressor.
Which brings us to the range results. Even without a free floating barrel, the B22 produces some amazing groups. The excellent Accutrigger accounts for good portion of that precision. It has no perceptible take-up or over-travel, breaking as cleanly as millimeter-thin glass.
Using Remington match grade ammo, the B22 FV-SR produced an astounding 0.067-inch three-round group at 50 yards shooting from sandbags. Using all of my fingers and toes, that calculates out to 0.1279 MOA. Truly impressive accuracy.
Shooting off-hand, the B22 is more than precise enough for your plinking and squirrel-popping pleasure.
Savage’s B22 FV-SR is an ideal rifle to practice your shooting fundamentals. I have rifles that cost as much as ten times the price that are scarcely any more accurate. That Savage managed to engineer this degree of precision into a $344 MSRP rifle ($249.99 from Brownells) is remarkable. I won’t be getting rid of my semi-auto 10/22’s anytime soon, but I enjoy shooting the Savage even more than my Rugers. Mark me down as a Savage fan.
Specifications: Savage B22 FV-SR
Sight: None, optics ready
Capacity: 10-round rotary magazine
Thread Pattern: 1/2-28
Barrel Length: 16.25 inches
Overall Length: 35.25 inches
Material: Carbon steel
Finish: Matte black
Twist: 1:16 RH
Weight: 6 pounds
MSRP: $344 ($249.99 at Brownells)
Ratings (out of five stars):
Style and Appearance * * * * *
The B22 the has modern lines that stand out and look great.
Ergonomics * * * *
It’s light, points naturally, and mounts easily. While comfortable, a grippier recoil pad would be appreciated.
Accuracy * * * * *
The B22 shoots well under MOA with good quality ammo. Its accuracy is way above its price point.
Reliability * * * * *
Bolt gun. It ran perfectly. Period.
Overall * * * *
I really was impressed with this rifle. The magazine could be a little easier to load and the stock could benefit from more texture and a butt pad. Its impressive accuracy, though, more than compensates for those two quibbles.