The Sako 85 Varmint Laminated Stainless is a bolt-action hunting rifle chambered in nine calibers. Sako is a Finnish gun manufacturer formed in 1927, and headquartered in Riihimaki, Finland. However, since 2000 the company has been owned and operated by Beretta. The Sako 85 is an upgraded Sako 75 with the major difference being the 85 has a straight comb. The Sako 85, like the 75, was designed with big game hunting in mind.
Features unique to the Varmint Laminated include a laminated hardwood stock with a pistol grip and cut checkering, and a stainless steel barrel. The stock also includes a recoil pad. The Varmint Laminated Stainless is available with a detachable magazine, but can also be loaded through the ejection port. The Varmint Laminated Stainless is available with open sights, and integral rails for scope mounts.The Varmint Laminated Stainless is available with an optional short barrel, threaded for a muzzle break or suppressor.
The Sako 85 uses a controlled feeding action, meaning the bolt face actually grabs the rim of the cartridge from the magazine. Controlled feeding prevents the round from falling out of the chamber during cycling. The bolt itself has three locking lugs and they, in turn, provide the user with a 70-degree lift. The action is made from heat treated steel, a process that leaves the steel hard and durable. Sako categorizes their actions by size such as extra small (XS), small (S), medium (M), large (L), et cetera, and the Varmint Laminated is available with Sako size XS and S actions.
As with most Sako 85s, barrel length, overall length, weight, and magazine capacity vary depending upon action size.
All Sako 85 rifles share a number of features such as free-floating, cold-hammer forged barrels. Free-floating barrels do not come in direct contact with the stock, meaning stock components do not absorb post-shot recoil. Hammer forging is a process whereby a mandrel is carefully passed through the bore in order to carve the rifled grooves. This process is known for achieving superior durability and precision. It has a single-stage trigger set at a two- to four-pound pull. Also, its safety locks both the trigger and the bolt handle. In addition, a bolt release button allows cartridge loading and removal while the safety is engaged.