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Best .22lr rifle to get into precision shooting

Hey all, I've been wanting to get into precision shooting for a while now and have decided on picking up a bolt-action .22 to start practicing with as I do not have a lot of room at the ranges near me, ammo is cheaper, and I can probably talk my girlfriend into shooting it regularly with me.  I'd like to start on a platform I can progress my skills on and not need to buy a new rifle a year or two down the road, and ideally I would be able to shoot a production model just to be able to compete in as many categories as I can, if that makes sense.

That being said, I've settled on the CZ455 as a good balance of price/performance, but I'm unsure if it's worth the extra $$ to go for something like the precision trainer for the manners stock, seeing as I am essentially a total newcomer to this type of shooting.

My questions:

    • Is there a 'better' rifle option as a production model under $500 (in terms of grouping, reliability, or some other facet I don't know about)? Would it be worth it to wait and save up for the CZ precision trainer?

 

    • Should I get something with better aftermarket support like the Ruger American?

 

    • Would it be better for me to go around to local gunstores and just see what feels best in my hands and upgrade as needed later?

 

I understand that there are a lot of factors that will affect the performance of the rifle, but I'm just speaking generally, and I'd like to hear if anyone has a suggestion for a good, basic bolt-action .22lr setup they would recommend for someone that wants to learn to shoot properly. Thanks in advance!

Bringing this back to life if only for a brief moment.

If you look at the NRL 22lr rules there is a description for the "base class" which essentially excludes the CZ455's

Rules

If you are set on running that class a different rifle is needed.

I would highly recommend the CZ455 however as its aftermarket availability is growing and is already pretty good.   I may be off a bit here but to me the CZ455 seems to be turning into the Rem 700 of 22lr bolt rifles.

Quote from Gregory Piet on July 13, 2017, 9:06 am

Bringing this back to life if only for a brief moment.

If you look at the NRL 22lr rules there is a description for the "base class" which essentially excludes the CZ455's

Rules

If you are set on running that class a different rifle is needed.

I would highly recommend the CZ455 however as its aftermarket availability is growing and is already pretty good.   I may be off a bit here but to me the CZ455 seems to be turning into the Rem 700 of 22lr bolt rifles.

I think you nailed it with that last comment Gregory.  The CZ is quickly becoming a very respected rifle for it's price as well as the fact that it can be customized as a person can afford to.  I bought a varmint model a year and a half ago.  The action is the only original part now.  All else has been upgraded as I progressed and could afford.  Most recently I dropped a Lilja EPS match chambered barrel into it and it shoots as well or better than my completely custom Anschutz 64 F-Class that cost more than double what I have into my CZ.

 

As far as the trainer goes... I don't think the payoff of the stock justifies its expense.  Mine rides in a Boyd's Pro varmint that has been pillared and bedded.  With the stock bbl and that stock, I was shooting .5 to .6 inch groups at 75 yds.  I say buy the CZ in a Varmint configuration and upgrade as you go.. You'll enjoy it and learn a lot along the way.. I did!

Have fun!

After many weeks of research from ammo to rifle to optic.  I weighed all the pros and cons multiple times over.  I even test fired a few of my final options and I made my decision and I will be running a Vudoo Gun Works V22 for these matches.  Hands down the most accurate .22lr I have ever shot.  That's not a easy  statement to make when I own many high dollar .22 BR rifles.

The Vudoo shot amazing!!