Please be patient for the long post.
Have been going to the local shooting range for a few months now and up until today have shot only a single shot, right handed bolt action carbine (and a handgun as part of firearms abilitation requirements we have over here). Shot from bench rest @50 yards. It's extremely accurate and with a very light trigger. Each time am not in the '10' I know it's because I did something wrong. Have also filed my request to own firearms and expect it to be ready by the end of the month.
So, am now looking for my first gun and my ideas aren't exactly clear
Am a left eye dominant , left arm shooter. My preference goes to ambidextrous guns. Pure 'lefty' guns are rare to find here and may be very hard to sell in case I have to.
I would like a rifle / carbine for general use. Bench rest is ok, but mostly I'd like to shoot offhand. Am not into matches, I just like to compete with myself, trying to get a bit better day by day.
Offhand shooting makes me lean to a semiauto carbine rather than a bolt action. It just seems awkward and tiring to manipulate the bolt with the right while you try to keep the gun on target with the left (maybe a stock with a pistol grip would help? I like the Evolution by Boyds by the way).
The purpose of this rifle in the end would be to learn and practice shooting before passing (well I guess I will always shoot .22
) to higher calibers.
The use would be target shooting only, mostly @50 meters (55 yards). Plinking is not an option here (not exactly forbidden but not easy / safe to find a place to practice).
So far I have tracked down the following options (also based on availability):
A) Marlin 60 (+ Boyds stock in the future?): a detachable magazine is not a high priority for me at this point. So the Marlin would seem like a good choice considering it's accuracy. I don't know if the tubular magazine makes any difference as the center of mass changes while you shoot. Also don't know if it's more or less reliable than a 10/22 or 15-22
B) Ruger 10/22 (+ Boyds stock in the future?): actually they are not that common over here, also parts availability is limited and expensive. Still it's affordable and I value it's reliability a lot.
C) S&W M&P 15-22: well, i do like how easy it is to take apart for cleaning. Dimensions and weight are also a plus. I also saw it has an effective deflector for ejected cases, nice touch for us lefties. The doubts are about accuracy. I have read around and am still not sure how good a trainer it would be for shooting offhand @50yards.
By trainer I don't mean for the controls, am not sure I'll ever own an AR. Just a trainer for general shooting techniques.
Still, considering I will not plink with it I can afford to use better ammunition rather than the federal 'el cheapo'
(Side note: Sig 522 are not yet imported here, otherwise this post would not exist, love those Sigs)
Also an option the Chiappa M 4-22 (awkward name aside
). Am still unsure about it's accuracy too.
D) Remington 597 TVP: with its heavy barrel this looks more ideal for bench rest than offhand. From what I read it's extremely accurate, but how much will that matter when shot offhand? Would it's front heavy weight be so detrimental that results would actually be better with A-B-C? Or would the Boyds stock help keep it comfortably for long periods?
Will try to actually see these guns in person but over here guns availability is somewhat limited, most dealers sell mostly hunting rifles.
I deliberately left out prices as they are quite different over here. The options are actually in their expensive order. Still I would prefer to buy something that does the job at a higher price rather than spend less and have something not up to the task (Ruskin docet).
So, what do you guys suggest?