Many shooters have a deep interest in military history, and almost everyone likes to go plinking. Our test items for this article combine the two. We have tested eight different military replica firearms that fire the 22 Long Rifle cartridge. The earliest replica is from the later days of World War II, and the latest is as fresh as today.
Our test group consisted of men and women shooters of varying stature, experience and skill. They evaluated the guns for fit, finish, reliability, ease of use, practical accuracy, and fun. We received some very candid feedback from this group. For the plinking evaluation, we shot outdoors at a 12-by-18-inch oval steel gong placed 50 yards from the firing line. Some testing days were hot and some were cold, so we think we have a good idea how these rifles will perform in realistic conditions.
Formal accuracy testing was performed at a very nice indoor range, Boyert Shooting Center (Boyert.com) in Katy, Texas, where we fired five 5-round groups at 25 yards from a bench. Because we expect these rifles to be purchased and used as fun plinkers, we tested using three different kinds of economy bulk ammunition: Aguila 40-grain round nose, Federal 36-grain round nose, and Winchester white box 40-grain hollow points. None of these loads would qualify as expensive target loads, so it is likely that each rifle would be more accurate with a preferred target load. While each rifle showed ammunition preferences for reliability and accuracy, velocities were reasonably consistent across the different rifles for each brand of ammunition. By the time we completed testing, each of these rifles had several hundreds of rounds put through them without cleaning.
Our test group included two sets of 22 LR firearms, the first of which included the Carl Walther HK MP5 A5, the Chiappa Arms M1 Carbine, the Carl Walther Colt M4, and GSG’s StG44. In an upcoming test, we’ll review the second set, which includes Anschutz’s RX-22 SCAR along with the very similar ISSC SCAR, the Carl Walther HK/416 D145RS, and Smith & Wesson’s M&P 15-22. This article focuses on the first four firearms. Let’s see which rifles were truest to the original arms while being practical and fun:
Walther Arms HK MP5 A5 5780310 22 LR, $600+
GUN TESTS GRADE: C
About the original: The HK MP5 is an iconic firearm developed in the 1960s as a 9mm submachine gun and is one of the most successful designs in history, with more than 100 variants fielded by military and police forces from more than 40 countries worldwide. It has also starred in countless movies, TV shows, and video games. (Something seen in every movie is someone slapping down the non-reciprocating bolt handle to charge the firearm.) Manufactured under license in eight different countries, the MP5 has been around for over 50 years and is still in production today. The A5 variant has a retractable stock and a four-position trigger group that includes safe, semi auto, 3-round burst, and full-auto options. A compact firearm, the MP5A5 is less than 22 inches long with the stock collapsed and less than 7 pounds in weight. With a 9-inch barrel, the MP5 fires from the closed-bolt position using H&K’s unique roller-delayed blowback action, similar to the G3 automatic rifle fielded by the German Bundeswehr from 1959 to 1997. In a very simplistic description of a roller-delayed blowback action, friction created by rollers on either side of a wedge cause a slight delay in unlocking the bolt, allowing gas pressures to drop to safe levels before extracting the cartridge case. This mechanism allows for a lighter bolt and recoil spring for the same cartridge power, which yields a lighter firearm that is easier to rack. These are desirable traits in a compact submachine gun. Another feature that is unique to H&K firearms is the rotary drum rear sight. The drum has a notch and three apertures. The notch is for close range and low light usage. The three apertures are for 200-, 300-, and 400-meter ranges. This sturdy and flexible system is very easy and intuitive to use. The front sight is a front post well protected in a hooded ring. The MP5 is usually fed from a 30- or 40-round straight box magazine released by an ambidextrous paddle in front of the trigger guard. Overall, the user-friendly H&K MP5 is a solid, reliable and compact weapon that has withstood the test of time.
Our test rifle is the first official Heckler & Koch MP5 chambered in 22 LR, this one is a replica manufactured by Carl Walther. Imported by Umarex, the Walther-made MP5 A5 has H&K markings, and most of the testers thought it was very close in appearance to the military version. While not being manufactured at this time, it is still very popular and available on the used market for between $600 and $900. This is very expensive for a 22, but it’s still a fraction of the cost for a 9mm SMG that can cost more than $30,000! Our example was a loaner that showed almost no wear.
It was built in Germany with a match-grade precision barrel, metal receiver, MP5 standard forearm, and retractable stock. It also has a Navy pistol grip as well as HK-style sights and an imitation three-lug flash suppressor to maintain authenticity. The compensator was attached so that the 16.1-inch barrel extends the full length of the gun and compensator. The magazine is made of high-strength polymer and is designed with grips for the spring on both sides, making it simple to load. There are 25- and 10-round versions of the magazine available. Both are proportionate in size to the centerfire version’s magazine to maintain the authentic look of the 9mm MP5’s magazine.
While the weight of the rimfire Walther was the same as the 9mm, the 22 LR is 4 inches longer to accommodate the 16-inch barrel required to meet Federal regulations. It is a straight blowback action, as opposed to the roller-delayed version, and includes a fake suppressor that screws on and off. A real suppressor could potentially be screwed on with an adapter, but the 16-inch barrel is pencil thin and might not support the weight without affecting accuracy. The fake suppressor does a very nice job of protecting the muzzle from damage.
The Walther’s triangular handguard, lower receiver, pistol grip, and butt plate are a high-quality polymer, with the remainder being metal. Finish on the firearm was very even and has held up well to usage. The finish on the fake suppressor showed more wear. The cocking handle was checkered on both sides and functioned just like the 9mm SMG. The sights are metal and very similar to the standard setup, with the exception that the rear drum sight did not have the V-slot and the apertures only changed sizes and not elevation. The ambidextrous safety is plastic and had two positions. These positions were marked Safe (in white) and Fire (in red) and use the standard H&K pictographs. The magazine release has both a button on the right side and an ambidextrous paddle in front of the oversized trigger guard.
The two-stage trigger averaged a little over 6 pounds with a lot of light take-up, a spongy release, and moderate overtravel. The one control that gave the testers trouble was the latch for the collapsible stock. When locked, the extended stock was surprisingly stable and provided a good cheek weld. However, the latch frequently slipped to the unlocked position, causing the stock to collapse. As a result, the testers felt like they could not trust the gun to stay locked. Finally, one of the testers found that the latch would stay locked by holding the stock very tight to the shoulder. The Walther is not forgiving of sloppy technique nor stable when bringing the gun up to a firing position. This frustrated all the shooters and figured into the final score.
The testers looked forward to testing the H&K/Walther MP5. Many of the younger testers were particularly excited about a gun that figures so prominently in film and video games. The Walther also got its share of looks on the firing line. The 25-round magazine was long enough that firing from the bench was a little awkward. When firing off hand, the testers found the gun compact but a little front heavy. Surprisingly, petite shooters did not find this gun very comfortable. When stable, the Walther regularly hit the steel gong at 50 yards. However, all shooters expressed frustration with the stock unlocking. The controls worked well and the rifle was easy to use in the cold with gloves. The video gamers in the group thought the MP5 was a lot of fun to shoot.
In formal accuracy testing, the Walther performed very well with the Federal 40-grain roundnose ammunition, averaging 1.0-inch groups. This rifle performed adequately with the Winchester 36-grain hollowpoint load, averaging 1.2 inch groups. The MP5 was the worst rifle in the test with the Aguila 40-grain roundnose, averaging 1.4 inches groups. For all ammo brands, we noticed that many of the groups had a cluster with a flyer that substantially opened up the groups. We suspect that the gun could have shot very well, but the loose stock may have contributed to that pattern. On the plus side, the MP5 experienced no functional failures of any kind during testing. This is unusually reliable performance for a semi-auto rimfire.
Our Team Said: Our testers appreciated the historical accuracy of the Walther HK MP5 A5 replica. They would like to see it produced it again to help bring prices down. The rifle was popular with the younger video gamers in the group. We found it to be compact, easy to use, reliable and potentially very accurate. The testers really wanted to rate the gun very highly. However, the collapsible stock lived up to its description and proved to be the Achilles heel of the firearm.
Chiappa Citadel CIR22M1W 22 LR, $300
GUN TESTS GRADE: F (1st Sample)
GUN TESTS GRADE: C (2nd Sample)
The U.S. Carbine, Caliber .30, M1 is one of the iconic weapons fielded by the U.S. Army in WWII. Designed as an intermediate arm between the issue 1911A1 pistol and the M1 Garand, the semi-automatic M1 was intended as a lightweight, defensive arm for support troops and specialist front line troops (tankers, radiomen, paratroopers, and officers). The M1 Carbine fired the .30 Carbine round (7.62x33mm) with 110-grain FMJ bullets at a velocity of 1990 fps with 967 foot-pounds of energy out of an 18-inch barrel. In comparison, the 1911’s 45 ACP produced 356 foot-pounds of energy and the M1 Garand produced 2656 foot-pounds of energy. The 36-inch 5-pound M1 Carbine is very handy, and the light recoil makes it easy to shoot. These traits make the M1 Carbine a favorite among modern-day shooters and collectors. This popularity, and the age of the platform, also makes buying a historical M1 Carbine an expensive proposition. An unaltered vintage piece in good condition will likely cost more than $1,000, and one in excellent condition can costs two to three times as much. What is a shooter to do if he wants to enjoy the M1 Carbine experience, but not spend thousands of dollars?
That is where the Chiappa M1-22 comes into play. A blowback, semi-automatic 22 LR replica of the famous M1 Carbine, the Chiappa certainly looks the part and is much more affordable at $249, a recent price at BudsGunShop.com. Our M1-22 came in a simple cardboard box with two 10-round magazines, a chamber flag and a basic manual with very few illustrations. A minor gripe about the manual is that the opening historical note clearly confuses the M1 Garand with the M1 Carbine.
The Chiappa M1-22 weighed 4.7 pounds, about half-pound lighter than the real thing, and at 35 inches long overall, it was very close to being a historically accurate sizing. The magazines are made of a sturdy polymer and could be loaded to capacity, but they lacked any kind of thumb assist to facilitate easier loading. The wooden stock is of the later “low wood” configuration and include the classic oiler sling-mounting system (though an oiler is not included). While fairly well fitted, the wooden upper handguard rattled. The stock was simply finished but could have used additional sanding.
The 18-inch barrel had a flat crown that might be vulnerable to damage. The metal elsewhere was well finished; however, we believe there is a lot of cheap, low-quality plastic on this gun. Plastic parts include the bayonet lug, front barrel band, operating rod, trigger group, and sights. The last two items raised a concern. The sights are adjustable and could see a lot of wear over the years. In particular, the rear sight caused concern because the windage screw was metal fitted into plastic, and the peep sight slides up and down a ramp with plastic detents. This will almost certainly wear poorly.
A bigger problem is the trigger group, or more specifically, the controls that are part of the trigger group. The safety is flimsy and does not inspire confidence, our testers said.
Our sample rifle was actually the second rifle procured for the test. The first rifle suffered a failure of the magazine release button. As a result, the first gun was inoperable and it was removed from the test. While this would likely be fixed under warranty, we have an obligation to provide full disclosure of our testing experience. As owner disassembly is not advisable, we recommend the use of a pull-through cleaning rope to clean from the breech.
Once we had procured a usable sample, testing began with an enthusiastic testing group. Everyone commented on how light and handy the M1-22 was to hold. Our smaller shooters really liked holding the Chiappa. While not as exotic as the StG44, the M1-22 still got a lot of interest on the firing line. Working the action was light, but a little notchy. The sights were easy to use and adjust, with protective ears for the front post. The peep-style sights made target acquisition quick and accurate, with a long sight radius of 22 inches. The single-stage trigger on the Chiappa was surprisingly good at just under 7 pounds, with little take up, a crisp release, and little overtravel. The later-style lever safety swings 180 degrees, with Safe being in the forward and down positions and Fire to the rear. While there is a discernible click at the bottom position, the firearm is historically accurate with no markings to indicate firing readiness. The magazine inserted easily but did not drop freely when released. The magazine reliably held the bolt open when empty, but the historically accurate bolt-hold-back button did not consistently continue to keep the bolt open. In fact, the bolt would usually close as soon as the magazine was released. Still, the magazine-bolt hold open prevented dry firing, which is important to preserve the firing pin and chamber in a rimfire. The rifle was accurate, with hits on the 50-yard gong easy to secure. The Aguila and Federal ammunition proved very reliable, but the Winchester suffered about a 30% jam rate. This pickiness is common behavior for a semi-auto rimfire. Because the other two brands encountered no issues, this was not considered to be a critical fault.
In formal accuracy testing, the M1-22 performed very well with the Aguila 40-grain RN ammunition, with 0.7-inch average groups and Federal 40-grain RN with 0.9-inch average groups. This rifle did not perform well with the Winchester 36-grain HP load, averaging the worst group of 1.6 inches and frequently jamming. This specific rifle did not care for the Winchester ammunition in any way. Again, this sort of ammunition preference is common behavior for a 22 LR semi-automatic firearm. Still, the Chiappa proved to be very accurate with the loads it preferred.
Our Team Said: The older testers appreciated the historical accuracy of the Chiappa M1 Carbine replica. The rifle found favor with our smaller shooters due to the petite dimensions. It had a good trigger and was very accurate with the ammunition it liked. However, quality issues are a serious concern. Poor material choices in the name of economy prevent this carbine from meeting expectations. Research also uncovered multiple reports of earlier versions of the rifle suffering catastrophic action failures. While these were evidently covered under warranty, we strongly recommend caution if buying an early example. Our own experience with the magazine release of the first sample also concerned us. While the gun had much potential, safety and quality issues prevent us from recommending the Chiappa M1-22.
Walther Arms Colt M4 Carbine 5760300 22 LR, $350
GUN TESTS GRADE: B
The M4 is a shorter and lighter version of the M16, a story is well known to many of our readers. In short: Gene Stoner, chief engineer of the ArmaLite division of Fairchild Aircraft (of A-10 Warthog fame) began working in 1954 on the AR-10 rifle in 7.62x51mm NATO. Submitted for US Army evaluation trials in 1956, the AR-10 was a revolutionary design with an innovative straight-line barrel stock arrangement for reduced recoil, advanced ergonomics, and heavy usage of lightweight materials such as aluminum and plastic. When the U.S. Army did not accept the AR-10, Stoner commenced working on a smaller, even lighter version called the AR-15, chambered in what would become the 5.56x45mm NATO round. Initially finding favor with the U.S. Air Force, the M16 was eventually accepted into service and became the standard U.S. rifle in 1969.
The M16 design has been updated several times over the last 50 years. With more frequent close-quarter combat in urban environments and increased deployment of riflemen from vehicles by U.S. armed forces, there was a desire for a lighter and more compact version of the M-16. In 1966, Colt came out with the XM177 “Commando” carbine with a shortened barrel. The Commando was also usually fitted with a collapsible stock that made it even more compact. Very popular with U.S. Special Forces, the Commando was very lightweight and handy. In 1984, Colt began working on the XM4 design in an effort to combine the best features of the Commando with the latest upgrades to the M16 rifles. Officially adopted in 1994, the M4 saw heavy usage during peacekeeping and anti-terrorist conflicts and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
By 2005, the M4 was the primary weapon for all forward-deployed Army forces. By 2015, the M4 was designated the primary weapon for the U.S. Marine Corps and is now in service around the globe. The closest civilian version of the M4 available from Colt is probably the LE 6920 series. At $1,099 each, they are not exactly cheap. Would its replica be reliable and accurate enough to make the 22 LR a good training tool for the real thing?
The replica M4 built by Carl Walther under exclusive license from Colt Manufacturing costs as little as $300 at CDNN. A shooter can buy a lot of 22 LR ammo for the $800 difference! This blowback, semi-auto rifle has a 16.2-inch barrel, weighs 6 pounds, and comes with a 30-round magazine. Additional magazines are available for $30. An almost exact look-alike to the M4, the Colt has a round polymer handguard, a Picatinny flattop, finger-groove pistol grip, and collapsible buttstock. The Colt even has the M203 barrel contour and bayonet lug.
The bolt handle is at the rear of the receiver like a standard M4. The dust cover opens but did not stay closed on our example. The magazine release functions identically to an M4’s. The two-position 180-degree safety lever is positive, with Fire clearly marked to the rear. The black-anodized aluminum receiver is similar but not precisely the same as a M4. Only the rear pin comes out when you want to field-strip the firearm. To remove the rear pin, you must loosen the flash hider to relieve tension on the rear pin. Once you remove the rear pin, proceed to split open the receiver and clean the bolt.
Use a bore rope or flexible rod to clean the barrel from the breech end of the rifle. We recommend that you watch the video on field-stripping, cleaning, and adjustments created by Walther for a good overview. Other differences in the receiver include a non-functioning bolt release and forward-assist controls. The Colt’s carrying handle is standard M4 and securely fastens to the top rail. The sights are also standard M4 issue. The triangular framed front sight is well protected and can be adjusted for elevation. The rear sight is well protected and includes a peep sight with large and small apertures. The rear sight is adjustable for both elevation and windage. The two-stage trigger had light take up, average release, and moderate overtravel. The trigger was a little heavy, averaging 8.4 pounds, but it did not seem to affect practical accuracy.
Most of the testing panel felt very familiar with the Colt/Walther. Even the one tester with minimal AR experience found the controls very intuitive. All the testers thought that the Colt looked very realistic. They particularly thought having the “rampant Colt” trademark stamped on the receiver was a nice touch. ARs have become so commonplace that nobody really noticed yet another one on the firing line.
The testers thought the magazines were sturdy and easy to load with a thumb assist on either side of the magazine. The magazines go into the well easily and latch with a positive click. The bolt is held open by the magazine when the rifle is empty. The experienced rimfire shooters like this because it should reduce wear over time to the chamber’s edge due to dry firing. The bolt stays open when the magazine is released. The testers liked that the magazine dropped freely because it made the Colt more suitable as a training tool. Because the bolt release is purely cosmetic, the user must pull back the bolt handle to release the bolt. The testers did not like this because most of them use the bolt release as part of their magazine change drill. The testers found the rifle easy to use in the cold with gloves.
All our testers found the rifle easy to use from the standing position. The Colt was the favorite for our petite shooters due to its light weight and adjustable buttstock. Some of our testers did not like the pistol grip. The panel did not consider this to be a major issue because the pistol grip can be easily changed. Practical accuracy with the Colt was excellent, with all testers scoring easy hits on the gong using the peep sights. We shot more than 500 rounds through the rifle in both hot and cold conditions. The rifle was remarkably reliable, with no failures to function experienced in any of our tests. The Colt is user adjustable if the shooter experiences issues with misfires. The adjustment screw is in the back of the bolt. Again, watch the Walther video for instructions.
The Colt excelled in formal 25-yard accuracy testing. The Aguila 40-grain roundnose and Winchester 32-grain hollowpoints both averaged 1.1-inch groups. The Federal 40-grain roundnose was the star of the show with a 0.8-inch average-size group. What was remarkable was how consistently accurate the Colt grouped, with no flyers showing on any of the targets.
Our Team Said: We appreciated the look and feel of the Colt/Walther M4. Compact and lightweight, all our shooters found it very comfortable to shoot, accurate, and unfailingly reliable. The Colt was the favorite of our most petite shooter. However, the more experienced AR shooters were disappointed in some of its limitations as a training tool and slightly downgraded the rifle as a result. Nonetheless, we can recommend the Colt as a fun and accurate rifle that almost anyone can enjoy.
German Sport Guns GSG-StG44 GERGSTG44 22 LR, $330
GUN TESTS GRADE: A (OUR PICK)
The Sturmgewehr 44, commonly abbreviated as the StG44, was one of the earliest examples of what became known as assault rifles. First introduced by the Germans on the Eastern Front in 1944, the StG44 was a gas-operated select-fire (semi- and full-auto) rifle with a pistol grip and box magazine. The original rifle’s intermediate 7.92x33mm Kurz cartridge (123-grain spitzer at 2250 fps for 1391 foot-pounds of energy) and in-line design helped mitigate recoil during automatic fire. Reputed to work well in the cold and be surprisingly accurate, the StG44 possessed many of the characteristics now considered standard features of modern assault rifles. A collector today should expect to pay tens of thousands of dollars to add a historical StG44 to his or her collection.
The German Sport Guns GSG StG44 in 22 LR is a more modern blowback rimfire replica of the StG44 assault rifle. It is also much more reasonably priced, with a MSRP of $529 and a street price of $330 at CDNN Sports (CDNNSports.com). It comes with one 25-round magazine, and additional magazines are easy to find around $30 apiece. The rifle makes an immediate great impression, as our example came in a sturdy replica wooden crate with a modified Waffenamt stamp and American Tactical StG44 burnt onto the lid.
Opening the latches of the box revealed the StG44 broken down into two sections, the barreled receiver and a wooden buttstock. It was simple enough to assemble by connecting the two pieces and inserting the included spring-loaded pin. Care is advised when removing the rifle from the crate to prevent the upper and lower receivers from opening and spilling the parts from the action. If this does happen (and it will happen eventually), it is very easy to re-assemble the action using the detailed and illustrated instructions included in the excellent manual.
The rifle was accurately sized at 37.3 inches long with a 16.3-inch barrel. While heavy at 9.15 pounds, this is still a full pound lighter than an original StG44 and felt well balanced between the hands. Fit and finish were historically accurate, which in this case means very basic, with lots of metal stampings and simply finished wood. The metal finishing was very evenly applied and has held up well to heavy usage. Considering the manufacturing difficulties encountered by the Third Reich at the end of WWII, the GSG edition of the gun would probably qualify as a very-high-quality example. The Schmeisser-marked receiver appeared to be stamped out of a zinc-alloy material. We took the opportunity to show this rifle to a senior gunsmith at an internationally recognized gun shop. He expressed no concerns with the material used in the receiver. In fact, we thought that the material provided an accurate look and feel to the piece. While plastic is used for some parts with little concern, our testers were not fond of the plastic cocking handle. However, it has held up well under heavy usage.
The buttstock and grooved pistol-grip panels are made from simple, straight-grained wood with a basic, but well applied, finish. In fact, the only part of the rifle that showed any wear at all over the course of our shooting were the pistol-grip panels, which showed some slight wear. The gunsmith noted that there was nothing in the GSG design that would concern him in the unlikely event that a repair was required. Breakdown is just as simple as assembly and is well described in the included manual. Since this firearm has a split receiver, this is an easy rimfire to clean from the breech. Because improper cleaning damages many rimfires, this is a potential longevity advantage for the GSG and should certainly help with long-term reliability.
Every tester was excited to try out the GSG StG44, and the rifle created a stir on the range every time we took it out. Many shooters of the younger generation know the StG44 well from modern video games. Shooting the StG44 was an enjoyable experience for most shooters. There was almost no recoil due to the weight. Some of the shooters found the weight made the rifle more tiring to shoot for long periods from a standing position. The sights consisted of a pyramid front post and a V-notch rear, with spacing geared more toward precision than speed. The sights are black and were a little difficult to see in low light or against a black background. They were very clear and easy to use in an outdoor setting. The sights are easy to adjust, using a button for elevation and a knurled knob for windage, but our example tended to shoot much lower than marked. Research indicated that while the sights are marked for historical accuracy, they are actually designed to work at rimfire distances. Just drop the last zero and it will get you close to the target range.
The two-stage trigger had a long, light take up with a crisp release and moderate overtravel. While it was one of the heavier triggers at slightly more than 8 pounds, shooters noted the trigger was very smooth and easy to use. The rifle was an accurate plinker. One shooter noted that it was so easy to hit the target that it was almost boring. Another shooter expressed surprise at how similar the GSG StG44 was to gameplay of the StG44 in his favorite video game. The 25-round magazine loaded easily and inserted easily. The magazine-release button was on the left side of the action, very large, well checkered and very positive in its usage, but the magazine did not drop free. None of the testers considered this a problem because the magazine release button was so large that even those with small hands could easily remove the magazine while pressing the release. The bolt was held open when the magazine went empty. While some have reported problems with the bolt hold open, our example exhibited no issues.
The left-side two-position safety was large and sturdy with Fire marked in red at the up position. All the controls were easy to use for testers of all shapes and sizes. We found the GSG StG44 very easy to use in cold weather with gloves due to the enlarged trigger guard, large magazine release and safety, and easy-to-grasp cocking handle.
In formal accuracy testing, the StG44 performed well with the Aguila 40-grain roundnose ammunition with 0.9-inch average groups and Winchester 36-grain hollowpoints with 1.0-inch average groups. This rifle was one of only two rifles that did not perform well with the 40-grain Federal roundnose load, averaging the second worse group of 1.3 inches. Again, this kind of ammunition preference is normal behavior for a 22 LR semi-automatic firearm. We shot more than 500 rounds through the rifle in both hot and cold conditions. The GSG StG44 did not experience a single failure to function of any kind. This is remarkable performance for a semi-automatic rimfire using bulk ammunition.
Our Team Said: We appreciated the historical accuracy of the GSG StG44 replica. The rifle was a surprise hit with the younger video gamers in the group and the StG44 turned heads wherever we went. We found it to be accurate and unfailingly reliable. Though it was a little heavy, everyone found it easy to use and a lot of fun to shoot.
Written and photographed by David Tannahill, using evaluations from Gun Teststeam testers.