After much anticipation, I headed up to the hills of Sultan Washington back in 1981 with my Dad to shoot a gun for the first time. I was a bit nervous, and very excited. It was a misty morning, and I recall taking the 1966 Ruger 10/22 out of its towell and rubber band “case” with much respect.
I recall setting up an empty cardboard orange juice carton, loading up the magazine with cartridges that were impressive looking to me at the time, and then preparing to take the first shot. I pulled the trigger, and the gun went “pop”. I can still smell the burned propellant and misty forest scent. The excitement from this trip took a lot of time to “wear off”, and this rifle has provided much entertainment and fun since then.
Unfortunately, .22 long rifle firearms can also be very picky and problematic. I can remember many frustrating moments with the aftermarket 25 round magazine that I purchased in the 1980’s. Sure it was fun to fire off a bunch of rounds in succession, but the frequent feed problems took away from the fun.
So what can you do to have more fun than headaches with your .22 long rifle firearm? Here’s a few things:
- If your firearm is not functioning well, perform a detail strip, cleaning, and lubrication job. With such a light recoil, .22 long rifle firearms are more sensitive to changes in action friction
- Use OEM magazines. After all of the trouble that I’ve had with non-OEM or specialty magazines, I’ve settled on factory Ruger 10 round magazines, they just work!
- Experiment with different types of ammunition – some will likely work much better (feed, etc) than others. Try different brands and different bullet weights/profiles
So, clean up your gun, get some good ammunition, and let the good times roll! Do you have tips that you’d like to share? Please drop a comment!