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Thread: Manufacturing practice of a Sako according to Garcia

  1. #1
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    Manufacturing practice of a Sako according to Garcia

    Here is an early artical by the Garcia corporation on Sako rifles. It is from their Sporting Arms volume four. I hope you find this interesting and informative. It is typed word for word, as it it in the catalog.


  2. #2
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    For some reason the "attach a file" gave me a problem. Here it is:
    Sako: Beautifully engineered, superbly accurate rifles.

    It's been said that if a gun works in Finland, it will work anywhere. Very true. Finland, is a rugged country, with a rugged climate.
    Well, the sako works in Finland, and there are Sako rifles working in every country in the world. And doing it beautifully. Because Sakos, like virtually every Finish product, are products of pride and skill rarely seen in this modern age. Even under a magnifying glass, the Finish on a Sako is superior to any production gun made.
    But there's more to a Sako than beauty. The Sako was designed and is made by Finns. Men who spring from a long heritage of hunters, avid target shooters, and -when necessary - grim and determined fighters. Men with little tolerance for a gun that doesn' t do it's job.
    The Sako actions are among the most modern in the world, perfectly scaled and engineered to the cartridges for which they are chambered. The bolt face is fully recessed to completely encompass the head of the cartridge for complete safety.
    The extractor is spring loaded, recessed within the bolt body. And what looks like a Mauser-type extractor on the side of the bolt, isn' t. It's a full-length bolt guide, which makes it just about impossible for the bolt to bind.
    The trigger is fully adjustable for weight of pull and backlash, and so finely finished that like the bolt, it requires no lubrication to work smoothly. Because lubrication, even the best, stiffens in the sub-zero temperatures of a Finnish winter.
    Integral scope blocks and sight mounts milled right into the receiver, are standard. The stock is hand-checkered French walnut. Even the amount of firing pin protrusion is easily adjustable.
    All of which makes a Sako-any Sako a very smooth, handsome, and pleasant gun to use.
    If this were all that there was to a Sako, it would still be a fine gun. But it isn't all. The real quality that sets a Sako apart from all others is its truly outstanding accuracy.
    There are many factors which enter into a rifle's accuracy, or lack of it: bedding, stock stability, barrel-to-action rigidity. But 90% of any gun's accuracy potential lies in its barrel. And the creation of superbly accurate barrels is where Sako surpasses every other gun-maker in the world.
    The barrels are made of a specially forged alloy Chrome-Molybdenum Bofors steel, imported from Sweden. It's exceptionally good barrel steel, just as it is. But it's only the starting point for Sako.
    First, the bars are individually heat-treated. The heat-treating is carried out in a continuous-type tunnel furnace, to assure that the bar accepts the treatment with a minimum of residual stresses and an even microstructure..Then a small section, about an inch long, is cut from each treated bar, and tested for proper hardness and closely examined under a microscope for a stable, evenly-dense structuring of the steel...the all-important microstructure of the barrel.
    Note that we didn't say that Sako checks every five bars, or every ten. Every single bar is individually checked. Either it passes, or it never becomes a Sako barrel.
    Once the bar passes this first critical test, it is then drilled to a size that is several ten-thousandths larger than the finished bore diameter. It is then carefully diamoned-honed.



    This extra step of diamond-honing which Sako takes is important. It leaves the bore with a mirror finish, so that at this point, the point before cold hammering, the bore can be checked for any faults which may have developed during drilling. These microscopic flaws can't be detected after hammering, but they will show up in the form of pitting or erosion after several thousand rounds. Few, if any, other manufacturers take this extra step. Sako does, which is why there are so many old Sako barrels around that still look like new Sako barrels.
    At this point, in any other factory in the world, the barrel would be considered ready for cold hammering. But not at Sako. At Sako, the bore is now lapped.
    This lapping operation is perhaps the greatest test to which the integrity of a rifle maker can be subjected, in that the results of it are completely invisible to the purchaser. There is nothing in it for the show. It contributes tremendously to the excellence of the gun, but can' t be seen or felt by the person who is buying the gun.
    And yet it is only by lapping the already microscopically-smooth bore that it can be brought to the minute tolerances which contribute so much to the accuracy which has made Sako famous.
    Now the rifling is cold hammered into the bore. A mandrel, shaped with the lands and grooves of the rifling in reverse, is introduced into the barrel. Giant hammers then hammer the barrel around the mandrel, with such tremendous pressure that the rifling is imprinted into the barrel, work-hardening the bore to an extremely hard, glassy-smooth surface.
    These mandrels, which Sako makes right at the factory, are used only for a predetermined number of barrels, and then thrown away, since the slightest defect in the mandrel can cause a hidden source of eventual barrel wear which can't be detected optically. And since Sako won' t take any chances, the mandrels are discarded, not when they wear out, but before they wear out. Long before.
    After hammering, the barrels are turned to their outside shape on a lathe, and the threads and chambers are cut. Each stage is followed by a careful, painstaking examination before the barrel is permitted to proceed to the next step.
    The last step, before final polishing and bluing, is test firing; first using special high-pressure proof loads, then firing for accuracy using regular Sako factory cartridges. Every barrel must group within Sako specifications. These specifications vary within the capabilities of the caliber for which the rifle is chambered, of course, but in all cases, the groups permitted are small, and the specifications rigid. If a barrel doesn't group the way Sako thinks it should, it' s scrapped.
    This point in itself is interesting. Many rifle makers, including the most highly respected builders of custom rifle barrels, will reclaim a barrel that shoots poorly by re-boring it to a larger caliber and re-cycling it through the manufacturing process. Not Sako. Either the barrel delivers Sako accuracy, or it' s scrapped. Period.
    Nor does Sako sell these barrels to other companies, although many companies have offered to buy them. Sako's fierce Finnish pride demands that the only barrels that leave the Sako factory will be those that are as perfect as it is humanly possible to make them.
    How perfect are Sako barrels? So perfect, that a lot of other companies would be content to sell barrels of the quality that Sako rejects.
    Think about that before you buy your next rifle.

  3. #3
    Senior Member deergoose's Avatar
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    thanks for doing that. I enjoyed the article.

    DeerGoose
    Central Virginia
    DeerGoose - Sako Rifle Enthusiast

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