CHAPTER 9: The Savage 11 Scout

Savage first interpreted Cooper’s Scout Rifle concept in 1999 with the model 10FCM Scout. They did it again in 2015 with the model 11 Scout. This means Savage is offering a rifle that they twice prior discontinued, due to underwhelming sales. [Just prior to publishing, it was discovered that Savage is offering another Scout Rifle for 2018 based on the newly revised model 10.]


The original Savage Scout Rifle.

We could go in depth discussing the original Savage Scout Rifle, after all you can still find them time and again on the used market. However, what you can purchase now is of far greater importance. What we will include about the original Savage Scout is that most who owned them and shot them – I mean really shot them, not played with them – discovered they lacked the durability associated the concept as Cooper envisioned it.

The new Savage 11 Scout is built on Savage’s model 11, dual-lug, bolt-action. However, there are some new features and treatments worth noting. The barrel nut was redesigned to not look like a barrel nut at all. It appears as nothing more than a step in the contour of the barrel. The bolt handle knob was enlarged and now measures 0.84 inch in diameter. And, the bolt is removed from the rifle by depressing a button at the front of the trigger guard and simultaneously pulling the trigger as it is retracted. I consider all of these good things.

The Action will now also accept a detachable magazine. The 11 Scout is shipped with an extended magazine, which is nothing more than the standard Savage magazine with an expanded, polymer base pad. Just forward of the magazine well there is a retaining lever that fits in a large recess. It can be operated with gloved hands, and these too are good things. However, on several occasions I failed to fully seat the magazine with my first effort. [During the 2016 Scout Rifle Conference one of the participates realized the same issues with his 11 Scout.] Sometimes this happened even after hearing the audible click of the lock. As testing progressed, I began slapping the magazine base or visually confirming the magazine was fully seated.