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If you could choose any pistol for 50' bullseye...

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If you could choose any pistol for 50' bullseye... Empty If you could choose any pistol for 50' bullseye...

Post by CalJ Tue Dec 20, 2022 4:18 pm

If you could choose the best 3 pistols for 50' NRA.22 bullseye, which would you choose? Why? What is the average price for the selection (if you know)


Last edited by CalJ on Tue Dec 20, 2022 4:44 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : clarification)

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Post by zanemoseley Tue Dec 20, 2022 4:43 pm

Most will recommend sticking with 2 guns and just shooting 45 for both the CF and 45 class. 

My favorite 22 of all time is the Hammerli 208S which is no longer made but can still find nice ones for $2-3k depending on condition and accessories. 22 conversions on a 1911 frame are also very popular. Nelson and Marvel conversions are very popular. 

Look at the Rock River Arms 1911 bullseye pistols, they are a very good semi-custom option. You can even use your conversion on this pistol so you only have to buy 1 pistol and a 22 conversion. Over time most people build a 1911 lower dedicated to their conversion. 

Both the 208S and a RRA 1911 are higher end stuff but there is more expensive stuff out there, also less expensive. Kind of depends on your budget and how serious you want to get with it. Soon you'll realize that you'll need to spend money to start reloading 45 ammo as shooting factory match ammo gets expensive real quick.

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Post by CalJ Tue Dec 20, 2022 4:48 pm

I should have specified .22 only. But the 1911 conversions sounds appealing - the 45 just being for fun and the .22 for bullseye. Or, one of each!  If you could choose any pistol for 50' bullseye... 1f60d

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Post by SingleActionAndrew Tue Dec 20, 2022 5:10 pm

My Pardini SP22BE without a scope was about $3300 to my FFL
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Post by BruceV Tue Dec 20, 2022 5:33 pm

The best 3 bullseye pistols - first of all that is very subjective.  Not everyone has the same experience with a particular pistol. Certainly the high end Euro pistols are going to be at the top of the list for most shooters.

S&W model 41's can certainly get the job done and have for many master shooters.

Same can be said for the Ruger MRK I,II,III and IV's.

The best pistol is going to be the one that feels good in your hand, the one you trust because it functions perfectly all the time.

You can purchase a Ruger Mark IV Target new for about $600.00 change out the guts with Volquartsen parts for about $200.00 dollars and shoot that pistol all the way to master level.

Also could buy a Black Mamba TF Volquartsen another fantastic pistol.

Now if your budget is such that you can spend $3,000.00 or so you can certainly buy a new Pardini SP with a Red dot on it and a few extra magazines and have one of the best target pistol on the market.

Doesn't mean you are going to like it or shoot it well, it has a different grip angle than most pistols, has a great trigger(for most shooters) I like it but it took me a lot of rounds to get used to and become friends with it.

I shoot my Ruger Mark IV almost as good as my Pardini, if I shot the Ruger more I'd probably be pretty close to the same scores - I could have 4 Mark IV's for what I have invested in my SP or 2 new S&W 41's.

So I didn't answer your question really, go to a gun club or range and ask a few folks if you can handle or shoot their pistol.  This is better than buying one and finding out it doesn't work for you.

Best bullseye pistol I've personally owned and I've had several is the Pardini, YMMV.


Last edited by BruceV on Wed Dec 21, 2022 9:51 am; edited 1 time in total

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Post by CalJ Tue Dec 20, 2022 5:39 pm

"Also could buy a Black Mamba TF Volquartsen another fantastic pistol."
It would be a fantastic dream! In Massachusetts, we are not allowed to purchase the Black Mamba. I just may move to another state just to buy one.  If you could choose any pistol for 50' bullseye... 1f606 

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Post by zanemoseley Tue Dec 20, 2022 5:42 pm

I don't get along really well with Euro forward balance pistols. As others mentioned make friends with the bullseye guys at the club and try what they have. You don't wanna spend $3k on a euro pistol then find out you don't like the balance. I like the 208S because it is reliable as can be, amazing trigger and has the benefits of a Euro pistol without the forward balance. I tried to like a Walther GSP for a while but didn't like the balance. 

I have a S&W 41 but to me they aren't reliable enough for serious competition use, seen too many malfunctions out of them. The way they're made with the rib above the slide leads to stovepipe. 

Rugers are decent but even with a Volquartsen trigger kit the trigger is not that great and tried some that ended better than others. They are really good for a "budget" 22.

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Post by BruceV Tue Dec 20, 2022 6:04 pm

CalJ wrote:"Also could buy a Black Mamba TF Volquartsen another fantastic pistol."
It would be a fantastic dream! In Massachusetts, we are not allowed to purchase the Black Mamba. I just may move to another state just to buy one.  If you could choose any pistol for 50' bullseye... 1f606 
They can be had in MA, 2 guys at my club have them, I'm in MA as well.  I'm going through the same thing with obtaining a .45 wad gun.

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Post by RoyDean Tue Dec 20, 2022 6:06 pm

Not sure why OP is asking for 3 pistols? I guess that price ranges is the target?

I agree with BruceV that a Mark IV Ruger is the best "entry level" gun. I prefer the 22/45, cause the grip angle is close to a 1911. About $1k with trigger replacement, red dot, etc.

Mid-level (less than $2k). You can order a complete Marvel conversion on a new dedicated lower from Frerking Custom Works, very nice. (or put a Nelson/Marvel conversion or your own lower). I would choose that over a M41 any day.

Top end = Euro gun (around $3k). IMHO Pardini is now the most popular new gun brand. My favourite. But getting the right grip is super important - I prefer Rink "upright" style, with a lot of fiddling to get a good fit. Many folks swear by Match guns, very good, no doubt, I had one but moved to Pardini. FWB, Walther, others are loved by some.

Hammerli 208. Finding a really good one is not easy. Finding parts also not easy. Those who have them already swear by them, and win Championships every year with them. But they are no longer made and buying a used one is a gamble.

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Post by mspingeld Tue Dec 20, 2022 6:24 pm

Hammerli eXess is another option.

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Post by CalJ Tue Dec 20, 2022 7:05 pm

BruceV wrote:
CalJ wrote:"Also could buy a Black Mamba TF Volquartsen another fantastic pistol."
It would be a fantastic dream! In Massachusetts, we are not allowed to purchase the Black Mamba. I just may move to another state just to buy one.  If you could choose any pistol for 50' bullseye... 1f606 
They can be had in MA, 2 guys at my club have them, I'm in MA as well.  I'm going through the same thing with obtaining a .45 wad gun.
I'd love to get my hands on one! How????

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Post by rkittine Tue Dec 20, 2022 7:10 pm

I have a number of .22s that can "Get The Job Done" as pointed out. A High Standard Victor, Smith and Wesson Model 41 and a modified Buckmark in addition to my competition .22 conversion kit for one of my Gold Cups.
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Post by RoyDean Tue Dec 20, 2022 7:12 pm

https://volquartsen.com/products/1299-black-mamba

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Post by Wobbley Tue Dec 20, 2022 9:46 pm

If I wuz to recommend a 22 pistol for a new shooter…

I’d go with a 22 conversion on my 45 and I’d get a GOOD 45 to mount it on.  That way you’d only have to Learn ONE trigger.  

For an experienced shooter, get a 22 that you like and get a BETTER 45.  (Better is subjective here, but you want the most accurate 45 you can buy that is 100% reliable.  Those are usually $$$ customs).

For 22s there are options that I’ll place in categories: 

1. Euro 22 “Standard” pistols.  Many of these have magazines forward of the trigger guard, have ‘ergonomic” grips, and more adjustments that tend to distract a newer shooter.  Examples are the Pardini , Walter OSP, Hammerli 280, MG2.  They can be cumbersome to mount an optic for Bullseye.  There are also more or less “standard Config” Euro pistols with Mags in the grip frame like Feinwerkbau 93, and Hammerli 208/215.    All of these Euro pistols are top quality guns, but in the American Bullseye game they are almost a fish out of water.

2. American high end 22s like the S&W 41 and the High Standard 107 “Military grip” automatics.  Accurate and ergonomically most like the 1911 45s. But some examples are temperamental in reliability.  Most guys in the pack tend to shoot these because the price differential between the Euro and these isn’t justifiable unless you’re in the High Master/National championship level.  

The “Adapted American Plinker”.  These are the various 22 Ruger automatics, the S&W 22A and Victory, and the Browning Buckmark.  Some of these are very accurate reliable pistols but they don’t have the “Bullseye” market penetration to get accessories and aftermarket support, except for the Ruger.  

The 22 conversions…where you convert a 45 to fire the 22 LR.  There are 3 makers Advantage Arms, Nelson and Marvel.   

Out of all those options, I’d advise a new shooter to use a conversion until he/she got to master, then look for a something better, but make sure it is really better.
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Post by BE Mike Wed Dec 21, 2022 9:07 am

For a beginner a Ruger MK with 5" barrel. It only needs a trigger modification to be competitive. A S&W model 41 may need a barrel re-lining and reliability package by a well-known bullseye pistolsmith. A Marvel or Nelson 1911 conversion with a trigger job (that takes a lot out of the idea of shooting the same trigger, as the .22 conversion can have a much lighter trigger. A Hammerli 208s is still a good option, albeit expensive. It needs nothing...It has it all going on!
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Post by chiz1180 Wed Dec 21, 2022 10:27 am

Current personal top 3:
1911 conversion
208
41
Just about everyone in the game has spent time with one of those and I personally shoot them all well.

Recommendation for someone starting out in no particular order: Buckmark, SW Victory, ruger, x-esse or a conversion. 

The euroguns typically are more of a trick to mount an optic, often prefer european ammo, and you will need grips that fit your hand. Level of commitment is higher, also harder to sell later on.
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Post by CalJ Wed Dec 21, 2022 11:55 am

chiz1180 wrote:Current personal top 3:
1911 conversion
208
41
Just about everyone in the game has spent time with one of those and I personally shoot them all well.

Recommendation for someone starting out in no particular order: Buckmark, SW Victory, ruger, x-esse or a conversion. 

The euroguns typically are more of a trick to mount an optic, often prefer european ammo, and you will need grips that fit your hand. Level of commitment is higher, also harder to sell later on.

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Post by Jon Eulette Wed Dec 21, 2022 12:40 pm

If 50’ is a priority, those little targets need a pistol with exceptional trigger. 
Most conversion triggers are so so unless really good gunsmith did the trigger job.
I’d get something with two stage or roll trigger. MG2 and 208/208S would be my first choices. Most 208’s have nice little roll to them. MG2 and 208S have the best triggers out there. Also simple easy to adjust. Pardini’s take a Doctorate to adjust the trigger and you’ll still have a gun with a lifeless crappy trigger. I’d shoot a Ruger before using a Pardini. I’ve owned and shot Pardini’s, if they made a better trigger I might shoot one….but they don’t.
208/215 are least expensive of what I’ve recommended.
My 2 cents.
Jon
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Post by Russ OR Wed Dec 21, 2022 3:34 pm

What feels good, has a good trigger, AND RUNS. - -a regularly mal-functioning pistol takes the fun out of it.

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Post by JHHolliday Wed Dec 21, 2022 6:34 pm

New to BE and new to this site, but re SW 41.  There are lots of stories about 41 unreliability, especially newer ones, and I'll add mine.

I bought a 41 new just over 2 years ago.  The first few outings were disappointing to say the least - with various misfires, fail to feed, stovepipes, etc.  The most frustrating were fails to eject, with the spent casing lodged so tight in the chamber that a wooden dowel was needed to get them out. CCW ammo was best but still problems. Extensive cleaning didn't fix it.  Sent back to SW on warranty, they worked on it, and it still malfunctioned - though less so.  After a second time back at SW it was almost fun to shoot (OK quite fun, like most 22 pistols).  Alex at Ten Ring suggested a lighter recoil spring (6#), after which the gun finally ran well almost all the time.

I sent the 41 to Ten Ring for a trigger job and they called to tell me the barrel had been rifled asymmetrically by the factory - the rifling was off center compared to the bore axis. I had the option to send it - a third time - to SW for a new barrel.  But why trust them if they had it back already twice and never said anything about it?  I never bench tested the gun but decided to have Ten Ring re-line the barrel, and I should get it back this week.

Meanwhile I bought a Hammerli 208.  It is in good condition (probably 30+ years old), very reliable (with the original magazine), though it had occasional light strikes / fail to fire.  It came with tools and some springs, and changing the hammer spring nicely fixed that problem.  As mentioned the trigger is excellent, as is the feel/balance in the hand.  It is very accurate and very fun to shoot.

I'm sure the 41 will be great now, finally, after lots of aggravation and expense.  I plan to shoot both and maybe post a comparison in the future.  But for now, if I had it to do over, I would have started with a 208.

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Post by Olde Pilot Wed Dec 21, 2022 6:56 pm

Why not start with the "poor man's 208", the Xesse? Get one with grooved barrel and dot sight goes on with $10 Weaver rings.

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Post by SingleActionAndrew Wed Dec 21, 2022 7:47 pm

The iron sights on the Pardini 22 are spectacular. I don't have a Hammerli or MG to compare but I felt shooting got profoundly easier with the Pardini. My best scores (low expert) with my Clark Ruger became my worst scores with my Pardini from the first match I got it. I wish my 45 could have sights like the 22.
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Post by JHHolliday Wed Dec 21, 2022 10:27 pm

SingleActionAndrew wrote:The iron sights on the Pardini 22 are spectacular. I don't have a Hammerli or MG to compare but I felt shooting got profoundly easier with the Pardini. My best scores (low expert) with my Clark Ruger became my worst scores with my Pardini from the first match I got it. I wish my 45 could have sights like the 22.

I have a similar experience with my FWB P44 10M air pistol.   The rear sight is large and the gap is adjustable so older eyes (cough) can see the front sight better.  I've modified (widened) the rear sights on the 41 and 208, which improved them but they are nothing like the P44's.  For 22 I was tempted to get the FWB AW93 because it has a similar big adjustable rear sight, but for other reasons decided not to.

Not ruling out dots but I would like to try to get good with irons first.

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Post by Dcforman Wed Dec 21, 2022 11:04 pm

My experience... the 208-215 sights are OK, not my favorite. Similar to a Bomar set on a 1911. I know that multiple sights blades/posts were manufactured for the 208, but I've only seen/used the 3.2mm wide front posts. MG2 sights are as good as my air pistol sights, and I basically made 22 distinguished with it in 1 year. I've not shot a Pardini with irons, but I imagine they are similar. Sight quality does make a difference. Jon is currently building me a ball gun with Air pistol sights. We'll see how it does!!!

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