More Premier Paper-Punchers: Snag the Walther GSP; Pass on the Hmmerli SP20

In the August 2000 issue, the Pardini Nygord Master beat out the Hmmerli 208S and Benelli MP95E Atlanta target pistols for value received. Here we test two more high-dollar .22 LR pistols.

Colt .22 Target Beats Ruger, Smith & Wesson Target Pistols

You had to learn to walk before you could run. You had to learn to ride your first two-wheel bicycle before you graduated to a 20-speed model. What makes you think its any different with target shooting?

Somehow believing the gun in their hand will instantly transform them into masters of the sport, far too many plunge into bullseye shooting by making an major, initial expenditure. This error is often compounded by making that investment in a caliber never intended to, and generally incapable of, deliver 10 rounds to the 10-ring at 50 yards. Were thinking specifically of the 9mm. Another foible is to spend the big bucks going in, then deciding you dont cotton all that much to paper-bu...

Taurus PT-22 A Better Buy Than Beretta, Walther Pocket Pistols

The concept of a pocket pistol in .22 Long Rifle (LR) makes us wonder to what purpose it might be put. Certainly it is not anywhere near ideal for self-defense, though it beats having no gun at all. They're not known for being target punchers, either.

But, these small autoloaders are lots more fun than the bigger guns, especially because the bigger, heavier guns will be more likely to be left home. Perhaps such a gun is the ideal choice for a fisherman who wants a popgun for dispatching big pike or small muskies, or for puncturing empty cans in camp. The hiker, burdened by a pack, tent and bedding, might be able to find a small bit of room for a pocket .22 LR semiautomatic with its light...

Savage Striker Our Pick Over Remington, T/C .22-250s

One shot, well placed, at great range: this is perhaps the ultimate shooting test. If the target is a varmint or a distant rock, the flat-shooting .22-250 will do the trick nicely. This is the realm of the precision rifle — or is it? Why not do it with a handgun? A bolt-action or break-open single-shot pistol might be lots more fun and is certainly more of a challenge to the shooter. Such handguns naturally require the use of a scope to get the most out of them, and also to help you to see small targets at extreme range.

Make no mistake, such a handgun is capable of at least as good accuracy as a comparable rifle. All barrels vibrate when you shoot a bullet through them, and the longer an...

Firing Line 12/98

NAA Customer Service
I have been a subscriber to your publication since it began and consider it the finest publication that exists on the subject of firearms. I only wish you published such a magazine on computers.

Almost ten years ago, I purchased a North American Arms .22 Magnum Mini-Revolver. I carry it when I jog or rollerblade and as a backup to the .45 Colt Officers Model I routinely carry.

Three weeks ago, while disassembling the Magnum Mini-Revolver for cleaning I lost the $3 hand spring. Upon calling the factory, their representative (Mr. Wayne Martin) suggested I return the gun for replacement of the part and reassembly.

In less than three weeks, the gun was...

How to Evaluate Used .22 Handguns And Rifles Before Buying

Without question, there are more pre-owned .22 rifles, pistols and revolvers occupying table space at guns shows, rack and counter case space at dealers and house space than any other caliber firearm. Based on the popularity of the cartridge, the guns that shoot it and the number of years both have been around, such abundance isn't in the least surprising. Due in part to that abundance, the prices attached to other-than-collectable .22s can be irresistible to the uninformed. All too often, many of these "bargains" become nightmares of additional expense once its discovered they don't function very well or not at all. You can be reasonably certain of one thing. A used .22 rifle, revolver or p...

Plinking/Target .22 Pistols: Rugers 22/45 Is Our Choice

We set out recently to test a set of plinker/target .22 LR handguns, with an eye toward finding a comfortable, shootable, affordable product to pass some range time with. Unexpectedly, we wound up finding three .22 LR pistols that not only achieve the relatively low standard of being decent recreational-shooting diversions, but which also offer the serious shooter good training use that can save money. If you pick up the $219 Browning BuckMark Camper, Smith & Wesson's Model 22A, $209, or the Ruger Model 22/45, $199, you will easily feel the similarities between these handguns and trademark centerfire names. The grip of the Browning BuckMark Camper renders the unmistakable feel of the venerab...

Semi-Automatics: Ported or Non? We Test Seven Guns To Find Out

[IMGCAP(1)] As heavily loaded defensive ammunition has become more widespread, so has customer dissatisfaction with the resulting stout recoil—in essence, we want to have our cake and eat it too. One way to head off muzzle flip is to port the barrel. That is, to cut holes in the barrel and slide so that some of the expanding gases that propel the bullet will be redirected to keep the muzzle down. This technology became refined in the ranks of bowling-pin shooters, whose game was to knock bowling pins off of a table in the shortest time possible. Since this required the delivery of a massive blow from a hot load and the ability to recover quickly and get back on the next pin, shooters were st...

Pocket .22 Long Rifle Semiautos: Fussy, or Functional Firearms?

[IMGCAP(1)] When it comes to .22 caliber Long Rifle pistols, you can spend as little or as much as you want. For about $200 retail, there are a number of very good target pistols that provide valuable range time with this economical cartridge. However, if you want to take a .22 with you wherever you go, we found that downsizing the action costs a little more, both in terms of money and functionality.

Within the modern pistol, ammunition is the fuel that runs the gun, and the .22LR round's tepid power makes for chancy operation, even though it has to move relatively little mass and overcome less slide travel. This alone may account for the higher price of pocket guns that can serve as a la...

All-Round Utility .22LRs: Used S&W 41s Are Worth a Long Look

[IMGCAP(1)] No one rimfire pistol can do everything. If it's precise enough for serious NRA bullseye competition, it's too big and heavy for taking along on a hiking trip. If it's light enough for trail use, it doesn't have enough weight for steadiness on the firing line in serious competition. Sure, there are many more uses for .22 pistols, such as hunting, plinking, and the like, but these two extremes give a reasonable picture of the scope of rimfire semiautomatics. No single gun can do all these things … or can it?

Many shooters have asked us if the new SIG Trailside can satisfy these disparate needs, so we decided to compare it to a couple of established pistols that can also be used...

High-Dollar .22 LR Pistols: Pardini Is Our Pick As Best Buy

Though the $1,095 Pardini Model SP target pistol offered the best price/performance matchup, we would pick the more expensive Hmmerli Model 208S over it and Benelli's MP 95E Atlanta model.

Over and above the cost of beginner-level .22 target pistols such as those we covered last month, there are many handgun choices for those who are willing to spend $1,000 or more for the best of the best. Some of these cost more than $1,500, and we suppose if you look hard you'll find some over $2,000. We don't know if it's necessary to spend that much money for a top-quality target puncher, but we do have some solid opinions about three guns we tested recently that range between $1,000 and $2,000.

Our target pistols included a Pardini Model SP with scope ($1,095) from Nygord Precision; a Hmmerli Model 208S ($1,925) from Larry's Guns out of Portland, Maine; and a Benelli MP 95E "Atlanta" ($795). The Pardini and Benelli were Italians, and the Hmmerli was Swiss-made.

We also acquired some outstanding target ammunition for them. We chose an English brand, one from Germany, and two from the U.S. They were, respectively, Eley 10X, RWS Rifle Target, Federal Gold Medal, and CCI Pistol Match.

Weirdness in the Ammo Market

As the holidays arrive and we all think about buying presents for our loved ones, I wonder if we’ll have any money left over...