Savage Arms

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Savage Arms
Industry Firearms
Founded 1894 (1894)
Headquarters Westfield, MA
Products Rifles, Shotguns
Parent Vista Outdoor
Slogan "The Definition of Accuracy"
Website Savage Arms

The Savage Arms Company is a firearms manufacturing company based in Westfield, Massachusetts, with a division located in Canada. The company makes a variety of rimfire and centerfire rifles, as well as marketing the Stevens single-shot rifles and shotguns. The company is best known for the Model 99 lever-action rifle, no longer in production, and the very popular .300 Savage.


Savage Arms Company - Utica, New York - 1904

Savage Arms was founded in 1894 by Arthur Savage in Utica, New York. Within 20 years they were producing rifles, handguns, and ammunition.[1] Savage introduced the first hammerless lever-action rifle, the Model 1895, derived from Arthur Savage's Model 1892 rifle that he had designed for Colt in a failed bid for a US Army rifle contract that instead was won by the Krag–Jørgensen design.[2] The Model 1895 won a New York National Guard contract, but the contract was cancelled due to political controversy.[3] The Model 1895 was developed into the even more successful Model 1899, later renamed Model 99, which remained in production until 1998.

Savage was one of six companies to participate in the US Army trials for a .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol, and was named one of the two finalists before losing out to Colt's design, which would become the M1911 pistol. Savage marketed a series of .32 and .380 caliber pocket pistols, the Models 1907, 1915, and 1917 based on the same patents as their .45 caliber prototype.

Savage merged with the Driggs-Seabury Ordnance Company during World War I and produced Lewis machine guns at Driggs-Seabury's former plant in Sharon, Pennsylvania.[1] Savage also produced Model 1899 muskets for the Montreal Home Guard during World War I.[4]

In 1920 Savage bought Stevens Arms. In 1939, Savage introduced the Model 24 combination gun (a configuration uncommon in the U.S.), which sold over a million copies.[5] Savage was one of the few U.S. makers of affordable double barrel shotguns, including the Fox Model B and Model 311, and produced rifles and shotguns under house brand names for large store chains.

In July 1921, a mortgage securing five promissory notes, each for $21,416 were filed in the County Clerk's office in Utica showing that the Savage Arms Corporation had purchased a "number of buildings erected by the government" during World War I for the purpose of enlarging the output of Lewis machine guns at the plant. The buildings included two large four-story brick structures, five large storage sheds and one office building, a concrete mill building, steel storage building, power extension plant, shooting gallery and steel water tank with capacity of 100,000 gallons. The notes were due in 1927.[6]

Second World War[edit]

During World War II, Savage turned again to military production, making heavy munition. Savage made most of the Thompson submachine guns used in World War II. Savage also produced the British No. 4 Lee–Enfield bolt-action rifle; though marked "U.S. PROPERTY", these rifles were never used by the US military and were instead sent to Britain under the Lend-Lease program. As quality wood was earmarked for military gun stock production, Savage produced some Model 24 .22/.410 combo guns and Model 94 single barrel shotguns with stocks molded from Tenite plastic. After the war it produced the first motorized lawnmower.[1]


Savage Arms Company - Rifles - Utica, New York - 1904

The company was run by a variety of owners from the 1960s to the 1980s. Savage eventually ran into financial trouble in 1988 and filed for bankruptcy protection.[1] Production was then reduced to the basic Model 110 bolt-action rifle. A turn-around began in 1995 with the company returning to private ownership, led by Ronald Coburn, previously of Smith & Wesson.

21st century[edit]

In 2002, the company started selling a factory-installed, safe, user-adjustable trigger, called the AccuTrigger. The AccuStock, an aluminum stock embedded rail system to further enhance action stability and accuracy, was introduced by Savage in 2009.[7] This new technology is now available on several of their models.

Savage was named the Manufacturer of the Year by the Shooting Industry Academy of Excellence in 2003.[1]

The Savage 93R17 BTVS was awarded the "Best New Rifle" in the "Best of the Best" presentation by Shooting Times, Sporting Gun, and Shooting Gazette magazines May 15, 2007 at the E. J. Churchill Shooting School in the U.K.

Ron Coburn, then chairman and CEO of Savage Sports Corporation was honored by SHOT Business Magazine and Time4Media outdoor media group as their "2007 Man of the Year". On February 5, 2013, Coburn announced that he was stepping down after a 25-year tenure as chairman and CEO of Savage Sports Corporation.[8] On February 6, 2013, Savage Sports announced the appointment of Ron Johnson as its new Chief Executive Officer. Johnson most recently served as President of the Sporting Group within Alliant Techsystems ("ATK").

ATK's Sporting Group markets firearm accessories and ammunition under brands that include Weaver Optics, Federal Premium, Speer Ammo and Blazer.[8] ATK announced the purchase of Savage for $315 million on May 13, 2013. With the purchase, Johnson remained with Bowtech, who was not part of the sale, and Al Kasper began tenure as CEO.[9]


Savage maintains its headquarters in Westfield, Massachusetts in the United States. The company also manufactures .22LR rimfire rifles in Lakefield, Ontario, Canada. This began after Savage acquired Lakefield Arms. All their .22 rimfire rifles are simply re-branded Lakefield rifles.

Canadian exports[edit]

According to company officials, the Canadian division of Savage Arms exports 97 percent of its rifles, mostly to the U.S, as of 1997.[10]

Current products[edit]


  • Field
  • Model 212 Slug Gun
  • Model 220 Slug Gun
  • Security Pistol Grip, w/Ghost Ring Sights
  • Security w/Rifle Sights
  • Stevens M320 Shotguns
  • Stevens M520 Shotguns

Rimfire rifles[edit]

  • Model 64
  • Model MK II .22 and .17
  • Model 25
  • Model 93 .22 WMR
  • Model 93R17 .17 HMR


The A17 is a semi-automatic rimfire rifle that uses .17 caliber ammunition from another Vista Outdoor subsidiary, CCI. CCI specially engineered ammunition for the A17 in cooperation with Savage in order to overcome safety problems associated with small caliber rimfire ammunition being used in semi-automatic weapons. It uses Savage's unique user-adjustable AccuTrigger system that allows the pressure need to affect a trigger pull to be changed. The safety blocks both the hammer and trigger. It locks the bolt open when depressed. In an American Rifleman review, Mark Keefe praised the A17, which Savage designed around the .17 HMR, rather than adapting a rifle to it, while also remaining competitively priced.[11]

Bolt-action rifles[edit]

  • Axis (formerly 'Edge')
  • Model 10
  • Model 10 Precision Carbine [12]
  • Model 10FCM Scout Rifle
  • Model 10FP
  • Model 110
  • Model 110FP
  • Model 11
  • Model 111
  • Model 12
  • Model 112
  • Model 14
  • Model 114
  • Weather Warrior Model 16
  • Weather Warrior Model 11

Hog Hunter[edit]

The Hog Hunter is a bolt-action rifle designed for hunting wild boar. It is a variant of the Model 11/111 design. Models are available for short-action .223 Remington and .308 Winchester and long-action .338 Winchester Magnum cartridges. It has a 20-inch, medium-contour, heavy barrel with a threaded end. The Hog Hunter comes standard with v-notch iron sights. The AccuTrigger allows the shooter to adjust the strength required for a trigger pull. The Hog Hunter weighs about seven pounds.[13]

Model 112 Magnum Target[edit]

The Model 112 Magnum Target rifle is a single-shot bolt-action rifle for long-range shooters. It chambers 338 Lapua Magnum cartridges. It is built around the Magnum Target Action, has a pillar-bedded 26-inch heavy barrel, and uses the Target AccuTrigger system for adjusting the amount of force necessary to affect a trigger pull. The Target AccuTrigger can be adjuster by the shooter to require a pull as low as six ounces. The Model 112 weights 12 pounds and is 49.8 inches long. [14]

Various other[edit]

Left-handed firearms[edit]

Speciality guns are the primary focus of Savage Arms' business. All of its product offerings fulfill a special need. Weapons designed for left-handed shooters are a good example of this. Savage Arms sells 18 different firearms for left-handed shooters with products designed for big game, law enforcement, target competition and predator hunting, including left-handed slug shotguns and bolt-action and semi-auto rimfire rifles. Savage generally releases its products as right-handed models with a left-handed version to follow a few years later. Models not available with a stock left-handed version can usually be made to order. Savage is able to convert most of its products to left-handed versions because most of its receivers, bolt releases, and safeties are designed symmetrically. Savage is able to easily convert its products' designs by changing the bolt assembly and moving the ejection port to the opposite side but most its competitors have to design completely new receivers. Savage's machine tools are likewise setup to quickly and easily switch from producing right-handed products to left-handed ones and back again.[15]

Discontinued production[edit]

Since Savage is one of the older American arms companies still in commercial production, it would be difficult to list the number of models no longer in production made by Savage under its own name and under tradenames for retail outlets. Those most notable and still in wide use today include:

  • Pistols
    • Savage pocket pistols, models 1907, 1915, and 1917

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Savage Arms: the definition of accuracy: from riches to rags to honors," by Carolee Anita Boyles, Shooting Industry, September 2003
  2. ^ Mercaldo, Luke; Firestone, Adam; Vanderlinden, Anthony (2011). Allied Rifle Contracts in America. Wet Dog Publications. pp. 189–190. ISBN 0-9707997-7-2. 
  3. ^ Mercaldo, Luke; Firestone, Adam; Vanderlinden, Anthony (2011). Allied Rifle Contracts in America. Wet Dog Publications. pp. 190–194. ISBN 0-9707997-7-2. 
  4. ^ Mercaldo, Luke; Firestone, Adam; Vanderlinden, Anthony (2011). Allied Rifle Contracts in America. Wet Dog Publications. p. 202. ISBN 0-9707997-7-2. 
  5. ^ Harold Murtz. Gun Digest Treasury (DBI Books, 1994), p.197
  6. ^ "Cradle of Syracuse Industries". Syracuse Journal (Syracuse, New York). July 23, 1921. 
  7. ^ "AccuStock, Big News from Savage Arms for 2009" Randy Wakeman,
  8. ^ a b "". Savage CEO Ron Coburn Announces Retirement. Retrieved 8 Feb 2013. 
  9. ^
  10. ^ Testimony of Barrie King, Vice-President and General Manager, to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs, November 24, 1997.
  11. ^ Keefe, Mark (22 September 2015). The Daily Caller (Washington, DC) Retrieved 9 October 2015.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  12. ^
  13. ^ C, Andy (5 January 2015). "Gun Review: Savage Arms Hog Hunter". (United States). Retrieved 13 October 2015. 
  14. ^ Law Officer (United States). 30 June 2015 Retrieved 13 October 2015.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  15. ^ Stakes, Justin (17 August 2015). "Left-Hand Forward". Ammoland (United States). Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  16. ^ a b Smith (1973), p.270.
  • Smith, Joseph E. (1973). Small Arms Of The World (10th Revised Edition). Harrisburg PA (USA): Stackpole Books. ISBN 0-88365-155-6. 

External links[edit]