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Wheelspin 12-10-2009 12:26 AM

.22 Semi-Auto over Bolt Action?
Ok guys, like I said in introductions I'm a newbie here with a couple of questions for the experienced rifle users among you...

I'm looking to buy my first gun soon and I've pretty much decided on a .22lr rifle for target shooting at the local range. I've been reading up and comparing models and it seems the Ruger 10/22 would be most peoples choice but my question is what are the pros and cons of a Bolt Action rifle over a Semi Auto like the Ruger I'm looking at?

The improved speed and ease of use of the Semi Auto seems to be the obvious advantage but am I missing something with a bolt action? Are they more reliable? durable? Does the bolt action make you slow down and in turn achieve better accuracy?

Or am I looking and trying to compare two completely different rifles meant for different jobs.

Thanks in advance for any replies and wisdom.

canebrake 12-10-2009 12:38 AM

Unless you're a PUREST, get the semi-auto.

If you are like the rest of us in the bell curve, auto is the way to go.

Bolt guys are disabled from birth. If your right hand doesn't jerk and go in search of a metal phallus each time you fire a long gun your good to go with a semi.

GatorDude 12-10-2009 01:22 AM

The Bolt Action will make you take your time and make every shot count. A Semi-Auto .22 will eventually lead you to a highly modified Honda Civic with a fin and a tin can muffler... :D

Seriously, a bolt action might be good for teaching kids to shoot and range safety. It's very easy to keep track of the rounds you have and to make sure that the actions are open when the range is cold. Bolt actions are also very easy to clean from the breach. You can just slide the bolt out and make sure it's spiffy. A bolt action might be a teeny tiny tad more accurate out of the box. But, sometimes it's fun to go pop, pop, pop, pop, pop with a semi-auto. If you get a 10/22 you really can accessorize it to do almost anything.

cpttango30 12-10-2009 01:26 AM

Over all bolt actions are more accurate than semi autos.

I like bolt actions because the 10/22 fanboys are just as bad as the Glock fanboys. The 10/22 can be turned into anything you want. But you take a box stock 10/22 and it will not shoot as good as my box stock 60 year old Remington 511x or my Mossberg M144.

By the time you get it a 10/22 shooting as good as my bolt gun you are going to be able to by 4 of mine.

lonyaeger 12-10-2009 01:44 AM

was about to get a 10/22 for Christmas, so I guess I'm a fanboy. Guess
CA357 is too.

Highpower 12-10-2009 02:49 AM

I'm in tango's camp.... :D

If you want to burn up a lot of ammo and have FUN - go with the 10/22.
If you want to do some semi-serious target shooting, go with a bolt gun.

I don't discriminate and I own a few of each.
And that's all I have to say about THAT. :p

Wheelspin 12-10-2009 11:31 AM

So I was pretty much right , semi-auto is faster and easier to have rifle range 'fun' with compared to a bolt action being more geared towards the serious target shooter who wants to take his time and make every round count.

btw I'm not saying you semi-auto guys aren't serious about your shooting there, don't want to make enemies before my post count is even in the double figures :D

Guess I need to get to the local gun shop and handle a couple of both. Neither of the local ranges have guns to rent so firing before I buy looks to be out.

Highpower 12-10-2009 02:03 PM


Originally Posted by Wheelspin (Post 197185)
So I was pretty much right , semi-auto is faster and easier to have rifle range 'fun' with

A lot depends on your definition of 'fun'. Some folks show up to our local ranges and proceed to empty out a 50 round magazine as fast as they can possibly pull the trigger. To THEM, that is fun.

To ME -- the fun is watching them get immediately tossed from the range, (and banned for life) for doing so..... ;)

#1 Safety
#2 Fun

jpattersonnh 12-12-2009 03:39 PM

I shoot both bolt guns and semi-auto's. Bolt guns tend to be more accurate and much simpler to clean. Auto's are great for shorter ranges and burning ammo, fast! I've never been a fan of the 10/22, but that is me. A bolt gun would be the better choice for target shooting. Are there semi-auto's that would shoot well? Yes, but not as well as a good bolt action. Good luck in your search.

photopro 12-12-2009 07:51 PM

Bolt or Semi ??
I would suggest bolt, they are fast enough unless you are a garbage shooter and you are going for ground game. Plus they always seem to be better engineered and constructed, I have a Ruger 77/22 which is MILES better than the Ruger 10/22 and the resale value is higher.


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