View Full Version : First Bolt Action

July 8, 2007, 11:22 PM
I've been into combat games for a while now (paintballing and airsofting), and decided that, since you can't really work on accuracy with balls, I wanted to get a nice, affordable bolt-action rifle (hopefully not more than 550+ dollars) -- preferably a .22 LR caliber.
Here's the top three I've really been looking at:
1. Remmington Model Five (http://www.remington.com/products/firearms/rimfire_rifles/model_five_specs.asp)
2. Savage Mark II (http://www.savagearms.com/markiif.htm) - That's pretty cheap. Is it quality?
3. Marlin Model 980s (http://www.marlinfirearms.com/Order_Online/boltaction22/980s.aspx)

CZ 452 American (http://www.cz-usa.com/product_detail.php?id=1) or the CZ 452 Style (composite... looks neat)
Winchester Wildcat Bolt Action 22 (http://www.winchesterguns.com/prodinfo/catalog/detail.asp?cat_id=525&type_id=100&cat=018C)
Marlin 925 (http://www.marlinfirearms.com/Firearms/BoltAction22/925r.aspx)
T/C R-55 (http://www.tcarms.com/firearms/rimfireR55AllWeather.php) - Not a bolt action, but I like it.

I'm not going to be banging it around, so I don't really care whether or not the stock is wooden vs. composite.
If you have any suggestions for other rifles, feel free to go ahead =)
Thanks for helping my pick out my first rifle.

And also, I'm looking for a decent scope. Haven't been able to find a good site for that.

July 8, 2007, 11:27 PM
Savage, savage, savage, most accurate rifle out of the box. Best bang for the buck also. Accutrigger is sensational.:)

July 8, 2007, 11:29 PM
A Ruger 10/22 might be more your speed with the experience you've had with paintball guns.

...since you can't really work on accuracy with balls... :eek:

It takes BALLS to work on accuracy! :D

July 8, 2007, 11:36 PM
Heheh... balls. I just realized how funny that sounds. Welcome to 9:35 and almost 10 hours of looking for the right rifles online. And I don't really care about speed. I like to take time and I have a special place in my heart (ooh, the love =) ) for bolt action.

Mac, any idea on what specific rifle?

July 9, 2007, 12:36 AM
Browning T-bolt.
Walmart can order the original T-Bolt or the new Varmint T-Bolt.
The Varmint has a bull-barrel.
$500 to $600

Stop in and ask to see their new catalogue.
The CZ is very nice and can be ordered at Walmart as well.
It's just hard to beat the fun of just flicking that T-bolt back and forth, rather than the same old 'up-back' and 'forward-down' of a bolt action.

link... Browning T-Bolt (http://www.browning.com/products/catalog/firearms/detail.asp?value=021B&cat_id=025&type_id=176)

July 9, 2007, 12:46 AM
I like the upbackforwarddown thing, but it's not going to determine my choice. Do you think that the T-Bolts, accuracy, durability, and overall quality, is worth 200 dollars more than the CZs?

July 9, 2007, 12:50 AM
You asked about a price... ?
If I had the funds and wanted another 22LR, I would get the Browning.

I am also a Browning nut.
I just can't seem to keep funds long enough to get one over a CZ. LOL
I need new pants to replace the ones with the holey pockets.

LOL how good is a "good" scope?
Price range?

July 9, 2007, 12:59 AM

Top of the line glass (same as Swaravski) but half the price...
Built in same country as the CZ...
Meopta (http://www.meopta.cz/index.php?id=17&lang=en)
Stick with the Meostars IMO... http://www.swfa.com/c-1134-meopta-meostar-r1-rifle-scopes.aspx

Half the price or less, and half the quality...
Stay in the "Elite" 3200 or 4200 selections...
Can be special ordered at Walmart...
Bushnell (http://www.bushnell.com/)

Cheap, throw it on for a few years...
Visit your local Walmart.
Grab one off the shelf or pegs.

The Meopta can easily be seen as the best in any light.
The others may require a trip outside after sunset. Vast differences can be seen in them all at that time.

July 9, 2007, 01:06 AM
A good scope is something that makes me look sexy when I shoot the gun :p
Actually, something that will be spot on (when zeroed in nicely) at 200+ yards, but hopefully isn't too pricey. I don't want to spend more than 580 for gun+scope.
The T-bolt looks good... How does it shoot in comparison to the CZ?

July 9, 2007, 01:29 AM
LOL which CZ?

The 452 or 453?

452 has no decernable difference in accuracy.
Once I think about it, all quality rifles fire damn good.
Both the Browning and CZ 452 have adjustable triggers.

The CZ can get even better in many opinions. The CZ 453 comes with a single set trigger. The old fashioned adjustable pull, or push-to-set.
When set (it is adjustable still) it is in the ounces range.

The lighter the trigger pull, the more dangerous the weapon is.
Since the trigger is lighter it is inherently more accurate.
A lighter pull off axis from the barrel means the barrel will 'snap' less when the trigger "lets go".

The CZ's clip only holds 5 rounds. The Browning holds 10.

July 9, 2007, 08:12 AM
I have a CZ 452 22 Rimfire American that is a very good rifle.
I haven't used any of the others you mention, so I can't compare them.
But, the CZ is a well made rifle, accurate, and good looking too.


July 9, 2007, 10:47 AM
Not saying it isn't possible, but if you are wanting to shoot at those distances, you may want to look into a .223 or .22-250 boltie instead of a .22.

July 9, 2007, 12:55 PM
200+ Yards? From a Rimfire?
Well I've witnessed quite a few prairie dogs killed at that range from a .17 HM2, a .22 LR will have trouble shooting that distance. .17 HRM and .22 WMR should both reach out that far as well. Art can back me up on this one as well as he was there to witness the little rimfire in action as well.

July 9, 2007, 12:59 PM
Don't sell paintball gun accuracy short. I was an airsmith for a couple of years, and build a couple of hundred custom guns, and theres a few things you can do to really improve accuracy.

1) Really clean the barrel between games. Use Brake kleen, or CRC Chemtool, and you'll see colors come out of your barrel you havent shot in years. After your done, roll up a couple of balls of toilet paper and push them through your barrel. The balls should be so tight they squeak. I use a wood dowel to push them through.

2) Get a real squeege to use during play. The "Jerk" squeege (just like a boresnake) work great.

3) My secret: Get a "lead wipe-away cloth" and cut it into squares about 2" x 2". Take another ball of papertowel or toilet paper, and push it through your barrel about a dozen times. It leaves a waxy residue, so repeat step 1.

4) Don't hone the barrel. 99% of honing jobs (even by airsmiths) are botched, and leave rings or waves in the barrel, which really affect accuracy.

5) Look around for better paint. Back in '94 we had a run of Acu-Cap/Zap paint that was so staggeringly good it was unreal. We were shooting at a piece of hanging rope with a knot in it at 75' and hitting it pretty consistently.
Unfortunately, like all good things it had to end, and I ended up shooting RP Scherer for the rest of my time playing. Not *quite* as accurate, but really close.

6) Check out "Freak" kits, which will give you a tight breech fit, which helps with the consistency.

7) WGP Sniper...need I say more. What a great shooting gun. I havent played in years, but I still have three.

July 9, 2007, 01:47 PM
200+ Yards? From a Rimfire?
Is there a decently priced .22-250 that you'd recommend, specifically?

July 9, 2007, 01:54 PM
Are you just looking at shooting targets/plinking or are you thinking varmits as well. If you just want to punch paper, I would stick with your original .22 and plan on shooting up to 100 yds. Being very accurate at a good range for the round is fun enough.

Heck, I shoot pellet guns at 25 yards to practice my shooting form and technique. With 3 boys coming into shooting age, pellets are even cheaper than .22 - although I know that is coming soon.

July 9, 2007, 02:00 PM
Okay... Do most ranges only go up to 100 yards?

44 AMP
July 9, 2007, 02:00 PM
Not just "online". Go to a gunshop, if you can find one. Not just one of the big stores (Sportsmans, Cabelas, etc), see if you can find a real gunshop.

Not only will you be able to handle several different rifles, gunshops normally have used guns, often at great prices for what you get. It is very rare for a used gun to have been used to the point where it is worn out. Normally what happens is it gets some finish wear (even alot of finish wear) but the internals are often just fine. Check the muzzle (crown), and as long as there is no damage there, and the rest of the gun appears sound, there is a good chance the gun will shoot pretty well. Of course, it helps alot if you know what you are looking at.

Just go and look around. It will be worth your time, even if you don't find exactly what you are looking for that day.

July 9, 2007, 02:18 PM
I'll do that. I was going to head up to Jerry's Surplus today and look around.

And to an earlier poster, I'm not gonna be hunting with it at all, I love the little varmints too much.

July 9, 2007, 02:36 PM
The salesman might cringe if you dry-fire a rimfire - so that's usually frowned upon, fyi.....

I really like your short list, so I don't think you can go wrong. A CZ452 is an excellent choice.

chris in va
July 9, 2007, 03:11 PM
I've always got to throw in a plug for the CZ carbine. 223 or 7.62x39. Loads of fun to shoot, minimal recoil (my x39 has stock butt pad and no sore shoulder) and with ammo still being fairly reasonable compared to hunting ammo I can shoot a couple hundred downrange and not break my wallet.

Plus it's a 'real' caliber you can hunt with later if so desired.

July 9, 2007, 04:14 PM
FirstFreedom, does the CZ 452 have a spot where you can put iron sights on?
Chris, that looks like an excellent gun for the criteria I'm searching in. Do you know of any widespread retailers that would sell it? (WalMart, places that you can find everywhere).

July 9, 2007, 04:55 PM
Sean, some 452 versions come with iron sights:

The 452 Luxe & FS come with beautiful, fully adjustable sights.
The 452 Varmint, American, Style, & Silhouette are "clean" - no sights
The 452 Scout & the 513 Basic have rudimentary sights

So you really need to get the Luxe or the FS if you like iron sights:


July 9, 2007, 05:08 PM
I'm looking at the FS, can you mount a scope onto that right out of the box? I'm trying to find something that I can get a scope and iron sights with. The only thing that really bothers me on the FS is the stock. I don't like how it curves down in comparison to the CZ 452 American.

July 9, 2007, 05:11 PM
I second the gunshops. I just put an old Remington 521T on hold, a real target rifle, for $199. That's less than most of the guns you were looking at and more gun for the money too. I had to put it on hold because everything gets held for 30 days before it's sold.

There's no telling what gems you can find on the used gun rack, from a $100 Mossberg 44US to a H&R 5200 for $200 w/sights. Check out what to look for in used .22s, read up on prices and hit the shops (pawn shops too). For the $500 or so you were looking to spend you could come out with 2 or 3 terrific used guns. You could even get one with iron or peep sights and one to scope.

July 9, 2007, 05:24 PM
Thanks, Big. They had a couple of Lee Einfields up at G.I. Joes. Right now I'm looking for a good gun shop or two near Everett. I reorganized it into top three. As of now, that Remington Model Five looks really neat, it has the iron sights and grooves for a scope. It looks nice, but I'm not sure how it shoots, I haven't seen any reviews.

July 9, 2007, 05:33 PM
SS - The range I use (open to the public, $5/gun to shoot) has both 100 and 200 yard targets, as well as shorter pistol lanes. I have been to ranges that had longer ranges that were for members only - public could use the 100 yard for sighting in, but that was it. You probably can get info about local ranges from the local gun shop.

July 9, 2007, 07:49 PM
Both CZ and Savage have been mentioned and make excellent rifles.

Just about any manufacturer is going to have a varmint/target line that will have these calibers in it.

And to steal a quote from another gunnie: "Most any rifle is going to be about 99% more accurate than the person shooting it is capable of."

That said, CZ with their single set trigger and Savage with the Accutrigger go a long long way towards helping one stay on target. And with practice, in the X ring consistently.

July 9, 2007, 08:01 PM
"Most any rifle is going to be about 99% more accurate than the person shooting it is capable of."

Personally, I don't believe that at all. I *used* to believe that, and believing it has caused me much frustration in trying to make inaccurate rifle/ammo combos shoot accurately, by trying to improve ME and my technique, to no avail. A lot of times, it IS the rifle/ammo/scope/rings/bedding combo, once the shooter's skills are fairly honed, and a good rest employed. Obviously, you have to have all components clicking to have accuracy. But you have to test different things in different ways to eliminate/control for certain factors. You do yourself a disservice and waste a lot of time if you ASSUME that it's your skill that is the culprit - may or may not be. OK, nuff about that.. :)

But to backtrack a bit - that quote makes sense IF you add an IF on the end: "....if you are using quality, consistent ammo, and the rifle is bedded/tightened nicely, and the scope is quality (if scoped), and the rings/base are tight, etc.

Sean, yes you can scope ANY of the CZ452s, whether they have irons on them or not. The downswept buttstock (euro style) grows on you (well, it did for me).

July 9, 2007, 10:04 PM
What about the Marlin 925 (http://www.marlinfirearms.com/Firearms/BoltAction22/925r.aspx)? I went to Big 5 today and they had one of those for $190. It is both scope capable and has iron sights, it's light, but I don't know how something for 190 is going to shoot. If anyone has one of those, I'd like to know what you think.

And thanks everyone, your input's been really helpful.

July 9, 2007, 11:14 PM
Run into your local Walmart and look at the gun rack. Most times the deals there are just over the ones for used guns.
If your Walmart Comp-shops, the prices for the same rifle at Big-5 will be be more expensive than Walmart.

BTW, where is local, Sean?

If its anything like My Walmart, they will have a Savage and a Marlin 17HMR for under 200 Bucks.
The Savage will have a synthetic stock and the taperd barrel. Savage 93F (http://www.savagearms.com/93f.htm)
The Marlin will have a wood stock and a bull barrel. Marlin 917V (http://www.marlinfirearms.com/Firearms/17HMRMagnum/917V.aspx)
Niether have iron sights but since its a 17HMR, they will have more than a 200 yard reach. And much more versatility than a 22LR.
Its still a rimfire, so ammo will be cheaper than most any center fire, per bullet. More expensive than any 22LR tho.

One of those and a scope from the pegs and you'll still have 200 bucks for ammo, sling, bipod... whatever.

Anyways, it seems that you still have quite a bit of shopping to do since you haven't figured out exactly what you want to do with your needed firearm.

For just plain plinking at targets or cans, maybe some squirel hunting, a 22LR would be best.
And down the road, that same 22LR could be your kids first gun too. They are great to learn with since they are low noise and no recoil.
No "shock" factor involved with sounds or kick.

July 9, 2007, 11:32 PM
+1 for the CZ. I have a 452 they said was a "Military trainer" model. It has adjustable sights, milled in scope mount, no set trigger, and much nicer wood than I would have expected (I had to order it). I got it because when I had tried one previously I couldn't believe how well and quickly it shouldered and how nice the sights were.

This has become my favorite rifle to shoot- not just because it fits me so well- it is like a laser beam! Except for when I know I have botched the shot this thing just puts the hole right where I am aiming every time! I haven't shot it over 50 yds. yet, but so far I'd have to say 1 MOA or better using cheap ammo.

Also, something that was explained to me (to talk me into a Wilson Combat CQB- it worked and I am soooo happy) is that if you have an accurate gun and you miss, you can work on your problem. If you have a sloppy shooter and you miss, you never know if it's you or the gun. The Wilson seriously improved my pistol shooting (and it is just so cool when you shoot your first "one ragged hole" group. I expect the CZ to do the same for my rifle shooting.

July 9, 2007, 11:35 PM
If you're in the Everett area, check out Cascade Pawn and Sam's Gun Club.

July 10, 2007, 11:18 AM
Can't say for sure on that rifle, but I have its predecessor, the 25N (Well, its mine until my son is old enough for it) and I love the way it shoots. Consistent 1/2 inch or smaller at 50 yards.

As to the "99%" quote I made earlier: yes, it does depend on all of those factors listed by FirstFreedom. It also depends on a persons definition of accuracy. In my experience, most people who claim that "This gun don't shoot right" are themselves to blame for said condition. Whether it be improper technique, bad ammo selection, bad reloading practice, or improper cleaning/maintenance, it normally goes back to the shooter, not the rifle.

July 10, 2007, 01:23 PM
Seanshot, My Savage model 9317bss in .17 HMR, is stainless steel, with composite stock, a 3-9x scope (BSA). It will put 5 rounds in a nickle at 100 Yd. My standard target when on the bench is a black "shootnsee" dot about the size of a dime. I can always hit it with the first shot. Accuracy at 150 yd is commensurate. At 200 yd I can keep 'em inside an inch and 3/4 with no wind. The tiny bullet is very susceptible to wind so you have to learn how to dope wind. It makes long distance shooting a challenge worth doing.:D

I don't have the "accutrigger" on mine, but I wish I did. It is not available for my rifle, but is standard on the new ones. The only fly in the oinment is the price of the ammo. And it is going up like the rest. You may want to investigate the .17HM2. Much cheaper, not as good at long range but better than .22LR.:cool:

The Savage is not the best in the fancy category having machining marks and some rough edges. But dollar for dollar it is the best bang for the buck around. CZ, Browning, and several others are prettier, but won't outshoot the Savage. And after all what is the measure of a rifle? Accuracy.:)

July 10, 2007, 02:14 PM
MacGille, does your savage have Iron sights as well as the scope? That's one thing I'm looking for, so I don't always have to rely on something else that can break.