Saturday, December 27, 2008

Add some Spice / Comparison

I recently acquired a Ruger 10/22 compact - Laminated stock, 16" barrel. Nice little carbine. Shoots pretty well with its preferred ammo - Federal Champion, 40 gr LRN. I'm not an auto-loading enthusiast by any stretch but I will admit that these are fun little rifles.

After a few days of getting familiar with the Ruger I decided to do a little side by side comparison with my Marlin 39A Mountie.

Ergonomics: The Ruger is youth sized so using the factory sights comfortably is a bit of a challenge. The Mountie is better proportioned to an adult. Operation of the Safety and magazine release on the Ruger is easy and intuitive. Less intuitive is the Bolt Lock, it required me to actually to read the manual to understand how to operate it.

Firing: One thing about auto-loaders is that once a shot is fired there is another ready to go right behind it. With the Levergun I can fire a shot and then manually lever one in once I am ready. I found that I needed to consciously slow myself down to get good groups with the 10-22. A little pause and a few breaths relaxes and sharpens the eyes and keeps the Heart Rate down.

Despite using the 10-22's preferred ammo I was unable to match the performance of the Marlin using the inexpensive Federal Bulk ammo. I suspect that the diminutive size, heavier trigger and familiarty played a part in that. Still, the Marlin impressed me and reinforced my appreciation for this fine firearm platform more than 110 years old.

Other notes: The Ruger weighs in at 4 lb. 9 oz. vs. the Marlin at 5 lb. 14 oz. The 20" barrelled Marlin gets over 70 fps faster out of the Federal Bulk ammo, 25+ fps more out of the Federal Champion ammo and the CCI Mini Mags.

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