SAKO TRG-22 for Competition
Jim’s shooting partner René, shooting TRG-22 with front and rear rest adapters on stock.
Commentary by Jim de Kort
I’ve been shooting a Sako TRG-22 since I started shooting firearms. It was my first rifle and I still have one right now. It’s rugged, has all the optional accessories you will need, shoots like crazy and is the most reliable rifle I have had (Note: I don’t go crawling through mud or jump off of cliffs). The TRG 21/22 has been around since the mid ’90s and has not changed since they went to the TRG-22 name. Even then it only underwent a few small changes to the stock, a new thread-type muzzle brake and some small changes to accessories and scope rail.
Ergonomics and Adjustability
The trigger offers three adjustments–trigger shoe angle, plus first-stage and second-stage pull weights. Pull is factory-rated between 1.0 and 2.5 kg, but if you’re lucky it will go a little lower (I got mine reliable to 510 grams). The trigger is very reliable and can be removed by loosening a single Allen-bolt which makes maintenance and adjustment very easy. The safety locks both the trigger AND the bolt handle, and the trigger group can be removed without disassembling the rifle.
Options for Optics
Accuracy and Reloading
The TRG-22 is not hard to tune. I have yet to find a load using SMKs or Scenars that does NOT shoot under 0.5 MOA. Anything from 31gr to 46gr will shoot under 0.5 MOA at 100m for me, so all you have left to do is match the load with the conditions and you’re in business. For 100m I use 37.0 gr N135 and Fed 210 primers behind a 155gr Scenar seated 0.005″ from the lands. I use the standard 210 primers, the M gave no difference in result and costs €37 per 1000 over here vs. €25 for the standard 210. Average groups in the hands of a good shooter are 1/3 moa, with occasional 1/4 moa groups. When I shoot on our one and only 500m range I tend to go for 44.0 gr N140. I don’t see how pushing it with 46-47 grains gives any real advantage over that. You might as well get a different calibre if you’re not satisfied with the 308 ballistics. (That’s one of the reasons I am switching to a 6.5x47AI barrel soon by the way. Initial tests for AccurateShooter.com show this should push a 123gr Scenar to 3050 fps.) Contact Dave Bruno for replacement Sako barrels (Dave’s the man).
SUMMARY–A Lot of Rifle for the Price
What are the downsides of the TRG? The rear stock does not work well with a Benchrest-style sandbag–the cut-out is the problem. I also hear complaints that the factory accessories are too pricey. I concede that accessories for the TRGs are anything but cheap, but all you really need is a muzzle brake. (There’s no need to upgrade trigger or barrel). In my humble opinion, don’t blow your budget on the factory bipod–get a Harris instead. The Harris is steadier, and with the money you save, you can buy a set of premium rings and a hard case. Then, load up some Lapua brass with Hodgdon or Vihtavuori, seat a SMK or Scenar and you are good-to-go.
The SAKO TRG-22 and TRG-42 are built in Finland by SAKO, a subsidiary of Beretta. In America, the guns are distributed by Beretta USA. Both TRGs (22/42) are available in forest green or a matte black textured finish. A two-stage match trigger is standard.
The stock is somewhat unconventional. It is an external shell, bolted to an internal metal chassis. The action bolts directly to the chassis, without bedding. The injection-molded stock is adjustable for comb height, length of pull (with spacers), vertical butt-pad height and cast-off.
Weight TRG-22: 4.7 kg (black), 4.9 kg (green)
Topics: .308, 308, 7.62×51, .338, 338 LM, Lapua Magnum, F-TR, F-Class, Sako, Beretta, Finland, TRG, TRG22, TRG-22, TRG42, TRG-21, TRG21,TRG-21, TRG21, Netherlands, SAKO, Beretta.