Newly Arrived L461 Carbine with Interesting Wood

Discussion in 'Sako Mannlichers and Carbines' started by icebear, Nov 28, 2018.

  1. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    Just got back from my FFL transfer dealer with an L461 carbine in .222 that I bought on Gunbroker. I don't think I've ever seen wood like this on a standard grade Sako. Not sure what kind of walnut it is, probably American black, but the grain is pretty nice. The swirl on the right side sort of reminds me of an octopus. Maybe this was a one-off for somebody with friends at the Sako works? Looks like it was probably refinished at some point, it really doesn't look like a Sako factory finish and the edge of the cheekpiece is a bit rounded off as if it were hand sanded. On the other hand, it looks like it's hardly ever been fired. It bears the sacred mark of Bofors - not that I care. There are small marks on the bridges from scope mounts with set screws - I wasn't able to capture the marks in the photos and I think I'll be able to render them almost invisible with a wire brush and cold blue. Set screw marks are normally a deal breaker for me but I wasn't going to let that piece of wood get away. I've been looking for an L461 carbine for the past few years and I think this one fills the hole in the collection quite nicely.

    I haven't decided what to do about a scope or sights yet. I have a Burris 3-9x compact that will do for test firing and look good on the gun. Burris used to make a 4-12x compact that was only a little bit bigger and makes an excellent complement to a .222 carbine. I'm going to a big gun show in Phoenix this weekend and if I see one at a good price I might just pick it up. On the other hand, I might just put an old-fashioned Sako peep sight on it, just for fun. The gun show means it will be at least a week before I can test fire it.

    Pictures!


    Carbine 1.JPG Carbine 2.JPG Carbine 3.JPG Carbine 4.JPG Carbine 5.JPG
     

  2. kirkbridgershooters

    kirkbridgershooters Well-Known Member

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    Other than the kind of wood, it certainly looks all Sako. A real beauty, and Bofors as well...
     
  3. kirkbridgershooters

    kirkbridgershooters Well-Known Member

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    I picked up a carbine recently in 223, and this Zeiss Diavari is a good way to go for scoping your rifle...

    IMG_1423.JPG IMG_1435.JPG IMG_1438.JPG
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2018
  4. robinpeck

    robinpeck Well-Known Member

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    Looks all factory to me. Sometimes you just get lucky with Sako wood.
     
  5. ricksengines

    ricksengines Sako-addicted

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    Fantabulous!
     
  6. gowyo

    gowyo Sako Junkie

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    I'd like to wring that kid-with-the- sharpie's neck!
     
  7. Branxhunter

    Branxhunter Well-Known Member

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    Stunningly beautiful!

    Marcus
     
  8. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    From what I can see in the photos it appears to be factory, and European Walnut. Sako was very random about the wood they used during that period of production. Many Deluxes came with wood that is generously described as "vanilla", while some standard grades came with spectacularly figured wood or wood with strong fiddleback. The dark mineral swirls in your stock are certainly uncommon, but not unheard of.

    Whether Garcia was an influence or whether moving to the new American importer was just coincidence, about the time Garcia took over Sako started using more discretion in their wood selections and Deluxe wood got fancier while standard (and Mannlicher) wood got plainer.

    Regardless, I'd have grabbed it if I'd had a chance. Congratulations!
     
  9. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    None of us like set screw marks, but I don't understand treating them as that big of a deal. After all, it is a rare Sako that you're not going to mount a scope on, and most mounts will cover the marks, anyway. So, why obsess over them?

    By the way, manufacturers who put set screws on Sako Tapered Dovetail mounts should be drawn and quartered.
     
  10. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    Set screw mounts can be used without marring the finish - I've done it several times. You just replace the set screws with brass, which, being softer than steel, won't damage the gun. Stith and B&L/Kuharsky mounts are great on an older Sako if you change the set screws. Or you can just leave them out entirely - a properly fitted mount will set itself firmly in place from recoil. And one owner who posted on this board puts a piece of lead shot in the screw hole. It smears and secures the base without marring the checkering on the bridge.

    I won't bother with a common Sako that has set screw marks, but I'll overlook them on an especially desirable gun like this one.
     
  11. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    I agree, that Zeiss is an attractive option. I have a similar 6x on one of my other rifles, a CZ 455 .22 Magnum with a Mannlicher-style stock. CZ455-1.JPG
     
  12. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    A quick update - I mounted a Burris 3-9x Mini in Sako medium rings. Took it out today to verify the scope zero at 25 yards. Accuracy looks promising but I won't know anything for sure until I get on the 100-yard range (hopefully next week). The county range where I shoot is divided into a long side with 100- and 200-yard target positions and a short side with various target positions from 5 to 50 yards. I could have moved over to the long side after zeroing the carbine, but I had several rifles that needed zeroing or short-range test firing and a couple of pistols to test fire as well, so I decided to leave the 100-yard testing for next time. Should be interesting - in addition to the carbine, I'll be testing and zeroing a recently acquired full-length, full-stock L461 rifle in .222, my custom FN-Sako in .300 H&H, and a Steyr SSG that just got a better scope. The SSG shoots tiny groups with match ammo.

    I tried out a Sako peep sight on the carbine. Couldn't get far enough down on the Monte Carlo stock to get a good, stable sight picture. I'm not sure how common this is (I have prominent cheekbones that frequently give me trouble on Monte Carlo stocks with high cheekpieces), but it's a pain not to be able to use iron sights. Also tried the Burris in low rings but it was just a hair too low and the objective wouldn't clear the barrel.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
    OldIronMan likes this.
  13. gowyo

    gowyo Sako Junkie

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    Icebear, I'm sorry to hear it. I too have issues, a. Because i have a huge head and b. Because I'm fat. That being said, I'll reluctantly take this defective detritus off your hands. Send me a pm....

    ;)
    Gary
     
  14. roninflag

    roninflag Well-Known Member

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    Icebear- I have a couple of sako mannlichers. including one like yours. my father and have harvested a lot of game with it including a mule deer , and over 100 coyotes. they are beautiful . yours came with exceptional wood . I am envious. a 3-9 swaro would balance nicely. finding original sako rings would be a must for me. where are you in az? congratulations. ron
     
  15. roninflag

    roninflag Well-Known Member

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    mine has the black grip cap and white line spacer of the earlier model like yours. wood figure is more like kirk's
     
  16. icebear

    icebear Well-Known Member

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    Ron: I'm in Tucson. I'm satisfied with the 3-9x Burris for the moment. I have a 2.5-8x Zeiss on the shelf but that's no advantage in terms of power. I'm still keeping my eyes open for a 4-12x compact; that's my favorite for a .222 carbine. I've got plenty of Sako low and medium rings and it's a good thing, because you can't find them at gun shows in Arizona and they are pricey online.

    I've fired a few rounds through the carbine at 100 yards and it looks like it's going to be an accurate rifle. Needs a bit more fiddling, but on the whole I'm pleased. I need to get the tension right on the barrel band.

    I was in Flagstaff a couple of weeks ago skiing. Went to the Nordic area on Monday the 4th for some snowshoeing (helps me get used to the altitude). Tuesday and Wednesday were hopeless with the wind and the cold; stayed in the hotel room and caught up on some reading. Thursday and Friday were glorious at Snowbowl. Stopped off at a gun show in Payson on the way home and picked up a barely-used Golani (Galil kit gun built by Century) for 500 bucks. Seller was a dealer but I didn't have to pay sales tax because the show was on the Apache reservation! The drive from Camp Verde to Payson to Oracle was really beautiful with all the fresh snow.

    Maybe next time I get to Flag we can get together and compare notes on Sakos. Feel free to PM me.
     
  17. roninflag

    roninflag Well-Known Member

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    that .222 wood strikingly beautiful. " I've got plenty of Sako low and medium rings and it's a good thing, because you can't find them at gun shows in Arizona and they are pricey" …… envious. last couple sakos picked up I ended up shopping after throwing away the off brand. we moved to north phx after 18years in flag. don't have to shovel sunshine the snow was unbelieveable even near my house. and snow bowl 106" of powder nice. will pm you. ron
     

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