Old Faithful

Discussion in 'General Sako Discussions' started by stonecreek, Oct 19, 2021.

  1. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    I decided I would go out this coming weekend before the general deer season starts in Texas to see what the deer are looking like -- and to shoot a hog if any showed themselves. I thought I might take my original Sako Finnbear .264 which I purchased new in 1965 (yes, I was only two years old!:rolleyes:) I've mentioned it a number of times before and how it has had countless thousands of rounds down the barrel in the last half-century-plus. So many, in fact, that the first inch of rifling in front of the chamber is so fire-cracked that it looks like alligator hide. Despite that fact, the rifle continues to turn in MOA groups and the first shot from a cold barrel seems to go exactly where it did the last time I shot it -- which in this case is probably six or seven years or more.

    Well, I took it to the range yesterday to check the sights, set up the target at 100 yards, and gave it a try. The square was the aiming point and the center circle of the bull is about 1.5" above it.
    IMG_0161 (800x757).jpg
    Yes, it was a disappointing quarter of an inch to the right, but you can blame that on 70 year-old eyes. A couple of proof shots at the 200 yard target were dead-on in both elevation and windage.


    I don't suppose any further explanation of why I like Sakos is necessary.;)
     

  2. Old Hippie

    Old Hippie Formerly known as bloorooster

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    Good shooting Stone!
    Old Faithful is all a hunter needs, and wants from his number 1 gun. Reliable and consistent accuracy is Sako’s legacy so it seems.
    I’m kinda jealous in a way, that you , and I’m sure many others, have that connection with a rifle. The first one, afforded in youth and cared for over time. Memories from every hit and every miss, from every scratch and ding. Old Faithful, the number 1 gun.

    Notice the target folks..in scale of the penny, not much larger than a poker card , or postcard even. To have a rifle and to be connected with that rifle that allows one to put a cold shot in the same place every time for over 50 years! Simply phenomenal!
    Now..take that target place it over the vital area of most any game species, knowing what you’ve known for all those years. Who could ever ask for more!
    Gotta love a Sako rifle!

    bloo
     
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  3. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    I guess you guys deserve a report from the weekend with Old Faithful.

    I had a big hog show up on the far side of a cotton field close to sundown as I sat in the blind watching a couple of young bucks sparring. The porker was about a half-mile away, but it started angling in my direction in a slow walk. Though still a bit far for a comfortable shot, I knew if I was going to shoot at all I needed to give him a try when his path took him as close to me as he was going to get, which looked to be between 250 and 300 yards.

    I held the crosshairs of the .264 just in front of him and about spine high as he plodded onward, and let one go when the sight picture looked right. It seemed like forever before a giant "WHOP" came echoing back to me, along with an unmistakable pig-in-distress squeal. But unlike when you normally shoot a big hog I saw nothing running away. Going to investigate, I stepped off 250 yards across the cotton rows and began looking. Nothing. Then another 50 and still nothing. Then, several more yards ahead, I spotted the lunker between two rows of cotton. When I got to him I used the laser rangefinder to check the distance back to the blind and measured it at 335 yards.

    Amazingly, he was DRT where shot. He fell with the entrance side up, and I wasn't about to try to roll that big SOB over to check for an exit, so I'm not sure where the 140 grain Nosler Partition hit, but it did its job. Here's the 56 year-old Finnbear (wearing its original Leupold 3-9) lying atop its victim.

    IMG_0173 (1024x625).jpg
    IMG_0176 (1024x904).jpg
    For you city guys, yes, that's a boll of cotton by his snout. I figure those tusks would be able to take the seat out of a pair of Levis just fine.
     
  4. sakojim

    sakojim Well-Known Member

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    Stonecreek.
    Nice rifle, nice bullet choice, great shot, nice tushes and a big complement to the rifle and the trigger squeezer. The .264 is one of the best calibers ever in my humble opinion.
    Sakojim.
     
  5. Old Hippie

    Old Hippie Formerly known as bloorooster

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    Well done Stone!
    Old Faithful strikes again, as if you had any doubt!
    I noticed the use of Non Sako rings and bases! We gotta subtract some points for that!;)
    It’s worth understanding that a Sako will still shoot lights out even if it isn’t equipped with purist level Sako rings. I like it!

    oh boy! Pork chop sandwiches!
    Good shootin’ Stone!

    bloo
     
  6. douglastwo

    douglastwo Well-Known Member

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    That's a good looking rifle Stone. Is that the original pad? If so, it has stood up very well at 56 years old. Do I see a little blue knocked off by a scabbard? You've taken good care of that rifle. I love it when you can describe a huge critter by saying he was muzzle to butt pad.
     
  7. deersako

    deersako Well-Known Member

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    Nice shooting stonecreek.
     
  8. kevinlg

    kevinlg Well-Known Member

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    Well.......at least they're NOT "Weavers"......:) :)

    Nice pig, Stone!
     
  9. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Yes, the pad is original. It's very odd how some of them held up nearly perfectly while others either went to mush or crumbled. I've got to assume that Sako used a contractor for its pads and some of them either had a poor rubber formulation or were improperly cured.

    Oh, one other thing about this rifle: My mother, who is 95, had been cleaning out some closets this weekend and came up with a box of letters and memorabilia of mine from when I was in college! I remember taking the rifle to a gunsmith to see if the front sight was screwed on so I could remove it (didn't have as much respect for originality in those days.) The hammered out the sight blade to see if there was a screw under it. Of course, the sight ramp is soldered to the barrel on these early ones, so we just left the sight blade off, replaced the hood, and I took it home.

    Well, there among the letters from old girlfriends and postcards from travel was an envelope with a little piece of metal in it marked "Sako .264 front sight". Well, I'll be damned! After a half-century I can make Old Faithful whole again. Who'd a thunk it?
     
  10. sakojim

    sakojim Well-Known Member

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    Now that is a feel good story for a great start of the day! Only a true Sako lover can understand how good you would feel by restoring a Sako to original by finding the original part that came with it.
    Sakojim.
     
  11. Bucktote

    Bucktote Well-Known Member

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    Great story & shooting Sir!
    Texas guys get it done ! I think the ferral hog was a spotted "Poland China" cross breed critter & your marksmanship, rifle & bullet made short work of him.
    My weekend was not as good as yours. Saw 7 deer, 2 does & 4 fawns one teen age 1-1/2 year old 6 point. Thank heaven we do not have ferral hogs on our farm, will be looking for Coyotes & other bad critters until a shooter comes in to the picture. The rut will provide a target for my new to me forester.
    All the best to you & the rest of our group. B/T
     
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  12. icebear

    icebear Sako-addicted

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    Great story. Love it.
     
  13. misako50

    misako50 Sako-addicted

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    If you had ever eaten Brats made from feral hogs you may have wished for a hog or two gracing your farm. (sterile ones, of course). Best I had came from Texas and were put up on the ranch they were hunted on. They mixed in some jalapenos and the heat was real subtle. Made me want to trek to Texas to shoot one.
     
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  14. Bucktote

    Bucktote Well-Known Member

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    Hi Misako,
    No never had that kind of good luck concerning hogs. Had a hunting club near Soperton GA 6,000 acres on the Oconee River, Had a wealth of wild hogs and we shot all we could, but only sows & shoats were good to eat,. Next, had a hunting club near Hilton Head, Blufton, SC, 1,000 acres had wild hogs , they like the others were distructful; ruined food plots, destroyed Turkey & Quail nests & were out producing deer & were competition for natural foods for the same. The hogs are nomads, wandered all over and destroyed habitat where ever they went. The problems they caused out weighed the good. The resident gators could not keep them in check. Ask any farmer and they will tell you " kill all of them that you can!!! and I will!!
    "Critter Non Grata" B/T
     
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  15. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Feral hogs are difficult to judge as to how they'll turn out for table fare. Some we've killed exhibited the cleanest, whitest loins you've ever seen -- much better than the ordinary grocery store variety. Even large boars, which have a reputation as inedible, can sometimes be just fine. On the other hand, my son took the loins from a medium-sized sow I killed last fall and when he tried cooking them the smell nearly ran the family out of the house. But I find commercial bacon just about as unpredictable. Maybe it's just the nature of hogs to vary.
     
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  16. misako50

    misako50 Sako-addicted

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    I have had mule deer like that sow. Just stopped shooting them. I am not supposed to eat bacon anymore but I wouldn't pass on one of those Texas brats if my life depended on it. (It does)
     
  17. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Many years ago I hunted in NW Wyoming. The locals refused to eat mule deer. Ironically, some of the very best venison I've ever had was from a young spike muley buck taken in the desert of far West Texas. The meat looked and tasted like veal. I guess it's a combination of age and diet when it comes to the palatability of mule deer.

    I fed some European guests some elk a couple of years ago. They were surprised at its mild, beefy flavor. They had expected it to taste more like its close cousin, their Red Deer, which they say tends to be stronger and a bit musky.
     
  18. Bucktote

    Bucktote Well-Known Member

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    Greatings, Gentlemen & Ladies !
    When I hunted in Argentina we ate red stag meat and it was the best venison I have eaten to date. Also an agent for pine straw purchasing told me that there are glands in hogs that must be removed to insure good tasting meat? If you see the show on TV that has european hog hunts, they kill only the large boars, so there must be a way to render the meat edible as they sell it??
    Would like to know how that is done!! I think Stonecreek is right, it all
    depends in what the critter was eating and the proper preparation of the meat. B/T
     
  19. misako50

    misako50 Sako-addicted

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    I wonder if it just might be in the processing or the diet. I have consumed both raised (wild?) here and couldn't tell a bit of difference. The process consisted of "off the bone". As for Mule deer, I would agree that a young buck or doe is fine table fare, but it has to be boned for me. That is how I have processed critters since I was 17. Now so someones feelings don't get hurt, I have had bone in roasts that were excellent and antelope that would drive a person out of the house but tasted as good as one shot unbothered and not run.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2021
  20. Bucktote

    Bucktote Well-Known Member

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    Well, MiSako50,
    where I was in La Pampa Argentina, I was on a-14 thousand acre cattle operation"Estancia"=Ranch. There was grass a plenty and the Red Stags were plentiful, as well as the feral mixed hogs & Russian Boars. The second boar I killed was barely cold when the guides butchered it & we had it for a hunt ending lunch the next day. It was great! I did not have the presence of mind to ask how they did it. The Sako AV 30/06 took the [email protected] yds, with 165 grain nosler & the pigs were killed with 180 grain pills. I missed a big sow @ 412 yds, as I did not set the scope range properly ( I got excited!!) and when I stop getting excited I will quit hunting. An interesting side fact.
    The guides splash a small cup of diesel fuel close to where they toss some corn.In about 15 min. or so the pigs come to it like "white on rice". They are conditioned to associate corn with the diesel smell. I wonder if it would work on Deer??? Wish I was there again. B/T
     

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