Hello and welcome back to another edition of The Rimfire Report. In this weekly series, we explore, discuss, and review the various firearms, ammunition, and topics surrounding the rimfire firearm world. Last week we discussed some of the most overrated guns that exist within the rimfire world and some of you wholeheartedly agreed and some vehemently disagreed – that’s great! Another great thing about firearms is that there is such a wide variety of them even within the niche culture of rimfire. So last week we saw some guns that got maybe just a bit too much attention, now, we are going to look at a few that probably don’t get mentioned enough. Let’s take a look at the 3 more underrated rimfire guns
The Rimfire Report: The 3 Most Underrated Rimfire Guns
1. The Marlin Model 60
You probably should have seen this one coming if you read last week’s edition of The Rimfire Report. Why do I think the marlin Model 60 is an underrated rimfire gun? Mostly, it’s because of how much attention the Ruger 10/22 gets. While they are both mostly the same, they have a few minor differences that are key to my argument.
First, the Marlin Model 60 comes in just a bit less expensive than the 10/22. While $100 isn’t much these days in terms of a price difference, I think that the slightly reduced price in combination with a few of its other features would turn a lot of potential plinkers towards the Model 60 over some other semi-auto rimfire rifle options out there.
The Model 60 is also probably one of the most underrated rimfire rifles because of its stock magazine capacity – starting at 14 rounds and working its way up to 18 rounds depending on the specific model. Throughout my life, I have found that Model 60 rifles tend to be slightly more accurate overall with bulk ammo. So for the price at its base level, I think the Model 60 doesn’t get quite as much attention as its main competitor the 10/22 which can go from a cheap rifle to a race gun with the sheer amount of aftermarket support out there.
However, for an out of the box plinker or squirrel hunting gun, I think the Marlin Model 60 deserves more praise than I normally hear about it.
2. Ruger LCP II Lite Rack
Right around this time last year, Ruger released the LCP II Lite Rack 22LR pocket pistol as their step into the .22 LR micro-compact pistol world. My first impressions of it were that it was unsuitable for carrying and was more or less just a good pistol to practice with since .380 ACP is so damn expensive you’d almost never want to shoot your centerfire LCP II.
Over time, however, I have come to actually really like the Lite Rack LCP II. The gun has been phenomenally reliable when shot with quality ammunition. At close range, the pistol does extremely well, and it’s actually quite fun to shoot as well. I have actually started to include the Lite Rack LCP II as part of my concealed carry library and it works great for just throwing in your pocket to head down to the gas station.
The inclusion of its Secure Action fire control system that combines a protected internal hammer with a bladed-safety trigger means that I am not the least bit worried about an accidental discharge while pocket carrying – even so if you worry about that there is always an external push-forward safety. So while the Ruger Lite Rack LCP isn’t going to win you any target or speed competitions, I still think it’s an extremely underrated rimfire pocket gun.
3. CZ-455 American
This may be more of a recent development because of the newfound attention bolt action rimfire rifles have taken on. That being said, in a world of fancy precision rimfire rifles, the humble CZ-455 American has remained one of the most common and for a number of reasons.
The CZ-455 is neither the cheapest nor most expensive bolt-action rimfire rifle, it falls somewhere in the middle at about $400 at its base price and really only needs a scope to push it into the long-distance game. One cool feature of the CZ-455 is that you can switch out the barrels very quickly with just a pair of set screws to go from .22 LR to .17 HMR or even .22 WMR. Each of the barrels costs only about $140 and each of them includes a single 5-round magazine with them.
Adding to the versatility side of things, the CZ-455 American also has the option for a threaded barrel either from the factory or as an extra barrel, however, this barrel is only chambered for .22 LR. Finally, from everything I’ve heard and experienced about the CZ-455, the out-of-the-box accuracy is good enough for competition work and only improves with an aftermarket trigger.
What are your underrated rimfire guns?
These were just three of my personally underrated rimfire guns. Some of these might actually be quite popular in some circles or disciplines but from my perspective, I don’t see these ones quite as often in the conversation compared to some other guns. This could be due to different marketing styles or perhaps just because some of the more popular guns get there because of a specific legacy or legend behind them – some times great performers do just that – perform well without taking the limelight.
I’d like to hear what you all think are some of the most underrated rimfire firearms. Looking forward to your thoughts down in the comments and as always, thanks for stopping by to read The Rimfire Report.