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Old January 9, 2013, 07:47 PM   #10
Senior Member
Join Date: August 25, 2008
Location: 1B ID
Posts: 10,194
There are several Marlin bolt action .22s in my family, and there have been a few others that were sold off (regrettably).
All of them have been fantastic shooters. The older triggers sucked, and the rifles might have some teething pains during 'break in'. But, they get the job done nicely. (I took care of the trigger, on my own.)

My own Marlin 882 (.22 WMR) is an absolute blast to shoot. It's accurate, fun, light weight, and easy for anyone to shoot. For a long time, it was my go-to rimfire. I'm sure it has more rabbits and squirrels under its belt, than any other firearm I have ever owned.

However.... my wife (working with Cornbush and Crankylove) decided to spoil me with a Ruger 77/22. It was well worth the cost. It has a real receiver and a properly-installed barrel (threaded and torqued); rather than just a section of tube with a barrel that's pinned, press-fit, or held in by some kind of v-block or clamp. And, the flush-fitting magazines are quite nice, when carrying the rifle (instead of stabbing me in the back, with every step).

With crappy ammo, it's better than most other .22 LRs; if only marginally. But, with quality ammo, it'll keep right up with some of my centerfire rifles, at 100 yards.

As I said, it was worth the cost.
My only complaints are:
1. Iron sights! I wanted iron sights, but Ruger doesn't even offer the option, any more.
2. The trigger isn't the best. I took care of mine, on my own; but most people would probably end up dropping some change on an after-market trigger, or a gunsmith's trigger job.
3. The magazines (like the 10/22) are annoying to carry. After a lot of debate, and actually returning 2 separately-purchased spare magazines, I decided to just stick with the one factory magazine. I just carry spare ammo, instead of spare magazines, while squirrel/rabbit hunting.

Sadly, my beloved Marlin 882 rarely comes out of the safe, any more. I always grab the 77/22, instead. Even 'handicapping' myself with .22 LR, instead of .22 WMR, the better rifle wins.
"Such is the strange way that man works -- first he virtually destroys a species and then does everything in his power to restore it."
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