Savage Armsí New AccuTrigger
by Jeff Quinn

photography by Jeff Quinn

December 28th, 2002



Riflemen these days have access to some of the most intrinsically accurate weapons ever built. Gun manufacturers have the tools and technology to produce very accurate barrels at relatively low cost, along with improved metallurgy and the ability to produce actions with precise concentricity and close tolerances.  Accuracy is also enhanced by precision-molded synthetic  or laminated wood stocks, resulting in a rifle with great intrinsic accuracy.

The problem with most factory produced rifles is the trigger. A seven pound or heavier trigger pull on a factory rifle is very common these days. A trigger pull this heavy will move the rifle at the moment of firing, making precise shot placement difficult at best, and very unlikely. This is no great concern to most big game hunters at close range, but is very detrimental to precision target shooters, varmint hunters, and law enforcement sharpshooters. Manufacturers have, over the last couple of decades, shipped rifles with increasingly heavier trigger pulls. It is not that a decent trigger cannot be mass-produced. The problem lies with product liability. Societyís ever increasing tendency to blame the product for the userís ignorance or carelessness has resulted in heavier and heavier trigger pulls. It is discouraging to spend several hundred dollars on a new rifle, only to find that it almost takes two hands to pull the trigger to fire the thing! Precision shooters have grown accustomed to having their triggers reworked by a good gunsmith or replacing them with an aftermarket unit. Also, many trigger designs do not lend themselves to lightening, without serious safety concerns. A light trigger can be easily bumped off if dropped, with potentially fatal results.  This has been the thorn in the side of factory rifle accuracy for several years; good barrels, stocks, actions, and horrible triggers...

...until now.

Savage has just kicked butt in the gun world with their new trigger system. It is by far the best trigger in any factory center fire rifle that I have tested in several years. No longer are we forced to live with heavy trigger pulls or expensive and delicate custom units.

Savage Arms has introduced the AccuTrigger system for their bolt action center fire rifles that is simple yet ingenious at the same time. The pull weight is user-adjustable from 1-Ĺ to 6 pounds, with complete safety against bump-off if dropped.

I just received here for testing a new Savage model 12BVSS .22-250 varmint rifle with the AccuTrigger system, and I canít stop grinning. I had intended to write an article covering the entire rifle only, but after trying the AccuTrigger, I decided that it warranted an article on the trigger alone. It is that good.

Savage has had a long-standing great reputation for accuracy in their varmint rifles, but has been, like other makers, forced to ship their rifles with heavier than needed trigger pulls for reasons of safety.  The new AccuTrigger has just made a good rifle better.

The heart of the AccuTrigger is the Accu Release; a thin blade that rides within the main trigger blade to prevent the sear from releasing unless the Accu Release is held to the rear. In the accompanying photos, the function of the Accu Release can be easily seen. If the trigger is accidentally bumped off, the Accu Release catches the sear, preventing the rifle from firing. Ingenious.

In use, it takes about one pound of pressure to move the Accu Release to the rear, where the trigger finger then touches the trigger, which has a pull as light as one and one-half to as heavy as six pounds. The pull weight is adjusted with the tool provided with the rifle, and can be easily adjusted up or down, at the userís discretion. The actual trigger pull feels much like an excellent two-stage trigger, only better. It is easy to discern the difference between the feel of the Accu Release and the trigger blade.

For bench testing, I set the AccuTrigger to its lightest setting.  Before actual firing, I tried to bump off the trigger by bouncing the butt of the unloaded rifle onto the floor with the action cocked and the safety off, to no avail. I could not get the gun to accidentally "fire".

The AccuTrigger also has a new three-position safety that allows the gun to fire in the forward position, locks the trigger but allows the bolt to operate in the mid position, and locks both the trigger and bolt in the rear position. The safety button is large, easily operated, and is mounted in the center of the rear tang, just where it should be.

The new AccuTrigger has a crisp, precise feel to the release, resulting in the rifle firing just when the shooter wants it to. This trigger is such a welcome addition to a good varmint rifle, making precise shot placement so much easier than with a heavy trigger pull, and with absolute mechanical safety.

The AccuTrigger will first be available on Savageís varmint and tactical rifles.

With the new AccuTrigger, Savage has just left other manufacturers in the dust. It will be interesting to see what the others will offer while trying to play catch-up. Hopefully, this will start a new trend toward better triggers for precision shooters. For now, Savage is way ahead of the game with their new AccuTrigger.  It is simple, safe, precise, and user-friendly. When it comes to mechanical devices, I rarely use the word "perfect". Most things in the real world are compromises, with perfection rarely achieved...

The Savage AccuTrigger is perfect.

Check out the new AccuTrigger online at:

Jeff Quinn

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Click pictures for a larger version.


The heart of Savage's amazing new AccuTrigger system is the Accu Release.



Using the included adjustment tool, the AccuTrigger system allows easy user-adjustability from six pounds down to a crisp, feather-light (and absolutely safe) one and one-half pounds.



Top picture shows the sear, center picture shows the sear blocked by the Accu Release, and the bottom picture shows the sear released to fire. Jeff was greatly impressed by the simplicity and genius of Savage's AccuTrigger.

Topping off Savage's new trigger system is an excellent three-position safety. This safety is well designed, works as it should, and is perfectly positioned for either right-handers or southpaws like the author.