As I was sitting in the sermon this morning, my mind wandered, as it is apt to do. The pastor was talking about Thomas, the doubting disciple, and I was thinking about rifles. Particularly, the .250 Savage. It was designed by Charlie Newton and standardized by Savage Arms, most notably in their Model 99 lever action rifle.
The .250 Savage, also known as the .250-3000 was one of the first factory cartridges to break the 3000 fps barrier. It's been eclipsed by the other quarter-bores, most notably its older brother the .25-06. The .250 Savage is neither fish nor fowl, not a varmint cartridge and not really a big game cartridge. Yeah, it'll make 3000 fps with the little 87 grain pills, but it doesn't carry well with the bigger bullets. It can push a 117 grain bullet to between 2500-2600 fps, which isn't screaming, it's only adequate for a number of tasks. The .25-06 will push that same 117 grain bullet faster and if you want screaming speed, the .257 Weatherby will make it go even faster. My Lee manual puts the .25-06 with the 117 grain bullet at the 2900 fps range and that's what I'm seeing with my Ruger 77.
There's not much to recommend the .250 Savage except that it's built in light rifles, has light recoil, and is easy to shoot. It's getting harder to find factory rifles chambered in the little cartridge, but Savage makes two. A stainless steel synthetic stocked rifle called the Model 16 FHSS and a wood stocked version they call the Model 14 American Classic.
I've got a .25-06 leaning in the corner and I've got other rifles, most notably my go-to rifle, the .30-06. The .250 Savage is about as useless to me as it can be. Still, that little cartridge jumped into my mind this morning when the preacher was talking about Doubting Thomas. There's got to be a lesson there, but I'll have to pray over it.