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Cricket 22 Rifle Review: A Staple Of The Youth Shooting Experience

People often ask us which type of gun parents should get for their kid’s first firearm. In my case, we went with a cheap BB gun for my kid’s first gun. The BB gun was nothing fancy but it tremendously helps the kid learn the mechanics of shooting like loading, cocking, aiming, and firing. Before long, my son “graduated” and we looked into getting a proper gun. We decided on a .22 rifle.

Personally, I am a fan of single-shot bolt action rifles for the youngster’s first gun. If you are looking for a gun that will suit your young one, a .22 rifle is not a bad choice. Today, we’ll be reviewing a fairly popular 22 youth’s rifle, the Cricket 22 Rifle. Is this a good starter gun for your son or daughter? We’re about to find out!

Choosing A Child’s First Gun

Child’s First Gun

Buying a kid’s first gun is a decision that comes with a lot of weight, thus it requires plenty of thought as well. Before you go out and buy your kid’s first rifle, here are some guidelines that you have to keep in mind:

Set realistic expectations

If it’s not there, don’t force it. Forcing a kid to shoot or hunt is a surefire way to create a resentment towards you. After all, kids just want to have fun. So, make the shooting experience as fun as possible. Again, if they’re not having any fun, don’t force or rush it.

If you can manage to associate fun with their early shooting experiences, you are setting a solid foundation for a fruitful outdoor experience.

Starting small

So, they have consented and ready for their first trip to the range, what’s the next step? This probably means that you should get him a .30-06, right?

Absolutely wrong!

For a kid’s first trigger pull, a BB gun or a rimfire is just about right. A relatively light rifle with a soft kick is the best way to ease him or her. Plus, you are likely preventing the ultimate accuracy killer: flinching.

The youth model

The best-fitting rifle can make a world of difference in making your kid feel more comfortable behind the gun. Nobody likes the awkwardness of handling a poorly-fitted gun. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of manufacturers that make production-grade rifles for shooters with a smaller stature.

A gun that best fits your kid might just even be passed down to their own kids one day.

Reviewing the Cricket 22 Rifle

Kid holding The Cricket 22 Rifle

Before we proceed to the meat of the review, let’s first take a look at the specs of the Crickett Youth .22 LR Single Shot Bolt-Action Rifle:


.22 Short, Long or Long Rifle standard or high velocity or 22 WMR


Manually cocking single-shot bolt action

Trigger Pull:

2 1/2 – 3lbs. (approx.)


Rebounding firing pin automatically blocked to prevent accidental discharge.

Length Of Pull:

11.5 inches


Adjustable Rear Peep sight, Fixed front sight / Drilled and Tapped to accept Crickett™ scope mounts

Barrel Length:

16.125 inches

Overall Length:

30 inches


Synthetic with Hydro dipped options


3 lbs.

Key Features:

  • Single shot bolt action
  • Fiberglass and polymer-filled stock with a blued finish
  • Ramp front and a peep rear sight
  • Manual cocking with a sear block for safety

First Impressions

My first impressions about the Crickett 22 is honestly not that great.

The chances that you’ll mistake it for a real gun is quite low. It looks like a toy and that’s not surprising for a gun that’s marketed towards young shooters. However, I was expecting some semblance of quality and reliability which I didn’t when I first held the gun in my hands. There are way too many plastic parts and many of which are quite cheaply made. By replacing some parts with metal, the overall quality of the gun would have been greatly improved.

Fortunately, the Crickett 22 does feel like a real rifle despite the difference in weight and size. It is a fairly small gun which is just around the measurement of the legal limit for rifles.

Keystone sells the Crickett 22 in a wide variety of stock colors from Mossy Oak Duck Blind to Muddy Girl. I especially like these stock options since they accommodate both genders.

Loading the Gun

man holding Cricket 22 Rifle

Despite the rifle’s small size, it is quite easy to load and shoot which is a good thing for most youth shooters.

To load the rifle:

  • 1
    You need to push the bolt handle upwards from its bottom position, then you need to bring the bolt back in order to expose the chamber.
  • 2
    Place a cartridge into the chamber and close the bolt and turn it back down.
  • 3
    Now, you have a loaded 22 rifle but you still can’t fire it. When you’re ready to fire, pull back the cocking knob at the end of the bolt and shoot.

The main safety feature of the Crickett 22 is the bolt that controls the cocking mechanism of the gun. The knob must be pulled back to cock the gun. The loading mechanics are quite easy but it takes a lot of getting used to.

Shooting the Gun

During the tests, the Crickett rifle was fired at numerous targets up to 100 yards. Considering that it’s a bolt action rifle, it can digest just about any ammo I’ve used without fail and I’ve still yet to experience a malfunction which is really impressive.

The short stock does require some getting used but I’ve found that it has a not-so-obvious boon. The short stock allowed me to help my eye get closer to the aperture for a better picture of the target. Although it’s a single action firearm that requires manual cocking, it’s not at all difficult for me to spend about 15 rounds per minute. I must say that the Crickett rifle is quite accurate and shoots exactly as expected. You can mount a rifle scope on the gun but for my needs, the iron sights worked just fine.

Overall, it’s a very well-behaved gun which earns it a lot of points as a rifle for beginners. If there’s a drawback, it has to be with the trigger. I found the trigger to be quite harsh and rugged. It’s a bit of a shame especially when the rest of the gun feels great.


blue Cricket 22 Rifle

I really enjoyed shooting the Crickett especially when it has little to no recoil. Once the fun is over, I’m pleased to report that cleanup is just as easy.

All you need to do is pull back the bolt, press the trigger, and it will just come off exposing the barrel and breech for easy cleaning. This is just one of the best examples of why this gun is a staple for young shooters.


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The Crickett 22 Rifle is available, depending on the barrel type, caliber, and stock you choose.

It’s a fairly inexpensive gun but it does come at a price. The build quality of the Crickett 22 is, admittedly, not the best. However, for a gun that is marketed to youngsters, this is quite expected. But this doesn’t mean that it can’t use some improvements in terms of build quality.

In terms of performance and ease of use, this rifle is a solid choice. It’s a fairly accurate gun which can really put some confidence in your aspiring plinker. It’s also light and easy to use, making it a perfect newbie firearm. This gun offers a good foundation for any young shooter. Definitely a worthy update to your son or daughter’s BB gun.

Pros and Cons

So what are things that we did like and didn’t like about the Crickett 22 rifle? Here’s a quick summary:


  • Impressive accuracy with little to no recoil
  • Light and easy to operate
  • Cycling feels great
  • Good safety feature
  • Reliable and utilitarian


  • Plastic parts give the firearm a “toy” feel
  • The trigger can be a bit hard
  • Loading and cocking require some getting used to

User Reviews And Feedback

Girl and her dog

So, did some other people appreciate what this weapon has to offer?

Overall, the Crickett 22 has been received well by customers, especially those who are looking for a good starting gun for their child. Most of the reviews state that the gun is light and easy to use. Plus, they have been saying that the firearm is very robust and reliable. Many bought the rifle as a gift for their son or daughter, and many were pleased that it was such a great learning tool. Let’s read some positive feedback from some buyers:

The rifle is sized and balanced perfectly for a child. It is easy to operate - no problem working the bolt, trigger, inserting a cartridge, etc. It's easy to aim and accurate. The laminated stock was nicely shaped and finished. Overall, a nice looking, easy to operate rifle. It's even drilled and tapped so a scope can be easily added. 


Purchased this rifle for my 9-yr old daughter. She instantly gravitated to the pink stock, which makes it "hers," This particular rifle did not come with a scope, but rather a peep site which I was relieved to find sighted in almost perfectly at 25 yards. So literally right out of the box she was putting rounds accurately down range.


On the other hand, there were several reviewers who weren’t too pleased with their purchase. One main complaint about the gun is the build quality. Many were disappointed with the lack of quality with this firearm. There were a couple of reviews that their kid grew out of it too fast.

Here are some negative reviews for your perusal:

My daughter outgrew her cricket rifle rapidly and she is only nine as same as yours, but she has broke 5'2" already as well. I got it for her when she was six, a year ago I moved her up to a .223 and she hardly asks to take the cricket out anymore. I need to order an adult sized stock for her cricket and maybe she would ask to shoot it more.


We started our daughter on a Cricket and wish we had gotten something a bit more quality. There are a number of makers doing youth .22 rifles that will outperform a Cricket mechanically. While the Cricket is still here, she shoots her Rossi Combo gun way, WAY more! Break action, auto eject, plus the extra 410 barrel.


What We Think

The Cricket 22 Rifle has all the makings of a top-notch beginner first gun. However, I have to say that it’s not just for beginners and young shooters.

This gun is affordable, reliable and very utilitarian in nature. It’s not the most tactical option out there but I can rely on it to work and its lightweight profile and small size mean that I can go with it anywhere. I really enjoy the simplicity of the Crickett to the point that I would consider it a survival weapon. What do you think of the Crickett 22? If you have used it before or you’re using it currently, feel free to share your experiences in the comments section.

Youth 22 Rifle Review: Complete Guide, Design And More

Choosing the best gun for your child is never an easy task. If you are going to set your child on the path and way of life that involve firearms, there’s more to choosing a gun than models and brand names. It’s quite obvious why you just can’t choose haphazardly.

If you are looking to buy your kid his or her very first gun, then you’ve come to the right place.

For this post, we will be reviewing a popular youth 22 rifle, the Crickett 22 LR. But first, we have prepared a quick guide on how to choose a firearm for your child.

How to Choose a Child’s First Gun?

Child’s holding her First Gun

So what are the crucial factors to consider when buying the first gun for your son or daughter? Below are some of the key considerations:

  • What Caliber? - Perhaps you’re an avid waterfowler and you are looking to buy your kid a shotgun so he or she can come with you. Or perhaps, you’re a whitetail hunter and you want your young one to be the one to deliver the finishing blow. The first thing to keep in mind is not to overgun your kid. Giving them a firearm that’s too powerful for their age will only make them recoil shy and chase them away from the sport. In this regard, you can’t go wrong with a .22 rifle.
  • What Actions? - Many parents go with a single action firearm because they tend to be more affordable and perceived as safer. However, single shots have the tendency to deliver more recoil and may limit them from doing the necessary follow-up shot. In this case, the beloved bolt-action rifle provides the balance of manual reloading and secondary shots.
  • Does it Fit? - On top of selecting the right gauge or caliber, ensuring that the gun fits your kid properly is important as well. Most adult-sized firearms have a length of approximately 14 to 14 ½ inches which is a couple of inches too much for shooters with a smaller stature. It’s a good thing that many youth-sized guns have an average length of 12 inches. A better-fitting gun will enable your kid to become a better shooter.

Keep these critical factors in mind when purchasing that important first gun for your young one.

Youth 22 Rifle Review: The Crickett Youth .22 LR Single Shot Bolt-Action Rifle

Crickett Youth .22 LR Single Shot Bolt-Action Rifle

Many avid gun owners will tell you that the Crickett Youth .22 LR Single Shot Bolt-Action Rifle is one of the best starting guns for young shooters. Before we get into the meaty details, let’s first check out the key specs of this firearm:

  • Caliber: .22 Short, Long or Long Rifle standard or high velocity or 22 WMR
  • Action: Manually cocking single-shot bolt action
  • Trigger Pull: 2 1/2 – 3lbs. (approx.)
  • Safety: Rebounding firing pin automatically blocked to prevent accidental discharge.
  • Length Of Pull: 11.5″
  • Sights: Adjustable Rear Peep sight, Fixed front sight / Drilled and Tapped to accept Crickett™ scope mounts
  • Barrel Length: 16.125″
  • Overall Length: 30″
  • Stock: Synthetic with Hydro dipped options
  • Weight: 3 lbs.


  • Single shot bolt action
  • Fiberglass and polymer-filled stock with a blued finish
  • Ramp front and a peep rear sight
  • Manual cocking with a sear block for safety

Looks Like a Toy But…

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Most parents will most likely buy a Daisy 1938 Red Ryder BB Gun for their kid’s first gun. That’s fine because it’s hard to go wrong with the classic BB gun.

However, I prefer the Crickett .22 LR Rifle. From its appearance, you’ll think that the Crickett 22 LR is a toy gun, thanks to its fiberglass and polymer-filled stock. However, you’ll be surprised that it actually feels like a real rile, albeit a downsized one.

The Crickett is a tiny gun, it just measures at the legal limit for rifles. This is no surprise since it’s a rifle that is specifically designed for the “children’s” gun market. If you’re going to buy it straight from Crickett, you can choose from the wide range of stock options from the patriotic Amendment to the girlish Muddy Girl Serenity.

Shooting Design

As you can see, the Crickett .22 LR Rifle is a bolt action, single-shot only rifle. For its safety feature, the gun has a bolt that controls whether you can cock the weapon or not. To cock the gun, a plastic knob must be pulled backward on the bolt in order to cock the firearm.

Pulling the trigger will shoot the gun and opening the bolt will eject the spent shell.

The Crickett 22 is also available without the added “Key Safety Feature”, although the models that can be found in most stores will have this safety feature. This feature is basically the button on the bottom of the rifle that when depressed, prevents the bolt from closing. To unlock the button, you need the “key” to insert into the mechanism around the button.

This is a bit of a controversial feature. While it does keep a child from firing the gun without the key, it’s also very easy for the shooter to push the button accidentally while holding the gun. You can use a scope with the rifle but that would require a special mount that is purchased separately.

Build Quality

To be quite frank, the build quality of the Crickett 22 is not the best. Some might even say that the gun feels cheap. Many parts of the gun would have been significantly improved by swapping plastic parts for metal ones. It really gives off an impression that it was slapped together.

Well, it’s weird to be complaining about the build quality for a gun that’s below $120 but I was definitely expecting better. For many youths, this shouldn’t be a problem though.

Shooting and Action

While the build of the Crickett 22 is nothing to write home about, it does more than make up for its shooting performance. With that said, the gun is very accurate and shoots exactly as expected. It’s a well-behaved gun which is important for a child’s rifle.

Since this is a gun that’s aimed for kids, its length of pull is very, very short. However, even adult shooters would find the pull to be quite manageable. It’s worth mentioning that the length of pull is a whopping 12 inches.

The bolt action feels great and cycles nicely. However, the cocking pull is a bit harder than I have expected, probably harder than it has any right to be. There’s also the “gripping” system that is located in the back of the bold which doesn’t accommodate the fingers. Plus, the plastic construction really takes its toll as it makes the action feels flimsy.

What about the trigger? For a kid’s rifle, the trigger is considered to be the heart of the gun. Unfortunately, the Crickett 22’s trigger leaves a lot to be desired. According to Crickett, the trigger pull is about 2½ to 3 inches. However, I doubt it since mine feels about 6 pounds on the trigger. The pull is just harsh and rugged.


The Crickett Youth .22 LR Single Shot Bolt-Action Rifle costs about $120 which is a great price for a child’s rifle. However, the price does come with plenty of caveats and most of the corners that have been cut lies with the build quality.

Although this youth 22 rifle looks like a real gun, its plastic components tell a different tale. Almost feels like a toy. However, this makes the Crickett 22 a great choice for absolute beginners. It is light and easy for young ones to handle and is quite an accurate shot which is great for building confidence.

Pros and Cons

So what are the hits and misses of this bolt action rifle?


  • Very accurate for beginner plinkers
  • Light and easy to operate for youngsters
  • Added safety feature
  • Sized right for small hands
  • Great price


  • Plastic components make the build feel flimsy
  • The trigger leaves a lot to be desired
  • Cocking mechanism can be tricky to operate

What the Reviews Have Been Saying

So how does the Crickett 22 fair with the other buyers?

For the most part, this youth 22 rifle have some fairly positive reviews. Most of the reviews say that the gun is lightweight and is a breeze to operate. It just has the right size which is ideal for young shooters. One review mentioned that in no time, his kid has started shooting accurately with the gun. As mentioned, this is a very accurate rifle which is great if you’re looking to build confidence with your kid.

Many reviews also mentioned that the gun comes at a great price. Here are some examples of the positive reviews:

You would be surprised how much fun this little gun is to shoot! Its small size makes it a great pack rifle too. I would recommend this gun as a perfect bug out rifle to someone who does not want to spend a lot. Best money on a firearm I've ever spent at Cabela's. - Taylor88

Got the 22 for my daughter and within half hour she was hitting the target at 50yds with cricket scope. She now keeps asking when are we going to the range. The rifle is great first-time shooters easy to load and shoot. - Jeff M.

As for the negatives, a couple of reviews mentioned that there are several issues with the gun. One reviewer wrote that there were issues with ejecting the casings, after just two outings. The cocking mechanism is also very difficult to operate. Several reviews were also not thrilled with the build quality and feel of the rifle.

Take a look at some of the negative reviews:

If you want to expose a youth to shooting, go ahead and spend the money on a better gun. I bought one for my girls, and have had nothing but issues out of it. After two outings, it had issues ejecting the casings. The cocking mechanism is difficult to operate. It is what it is, cheap and low quality. - EdgemoorRedneck

If you happen to see a Crickett dirt cheap, don’t be afraid of buying it, they aren’t really BAD guns… this Crickett I bought second-hand for $50 and others are out there in that price range. Pull out the safety, stick it in your GHB and you have a nice little setup. - Salt-N-Pepper

What We Think

The Crickett 22 rifle comes at a great price which is the main selling point of the gun. As far as a youth 22 rifle is concerned, it’s one of the most accurate shooters out there. It’s very light and easy to operate, making it a good option for beginners.

However, there are some glaring drawbacks about the gun which prevent it from becoming a must-have firearm for youngsters. It’s not a bad gun by any means but I will only recommend it for absolute beginners and there’s an issue with your budget.

Other Rifles you May like

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Henry .22 Rifle Review – Why Is It One of The Most Popular Lever Action Rifles?

Whether you’re hunting small game or target shooting, you want a rifle that is durable, accurate and comfortable. Of course, feeling like you’re in a western movie is also a bonus. The Henry 22 rifle is one of the most classic and iconic rifles on the market today. Whether you’ve grown up admiring western-style firearms or have always wanted to handle a lever action rifle, you’ll love the ease of this American-made marvel. This complete review will give you all the information you need about purchasing a Henry 22 rifle lever action rifle. You’ll get an in-depth look at the specifications, find out what makes Henry such a popular gun manufacturer and compare this rifle head-to-head with other great .22 models. Finally, a full review of an American classic.

Henry .22 Rifle 

Pros & Cons

While there are many reasons to choose the Henry 22 rifle, there are also cons to this lever action .22. Consider each carefully and choose the rifle that is the best fit for your style. Like all purchases, you want a rifle that reflects your personality, hunting style, and budget. Take a look at this list and consider the pros and cons of the Henry 22 rifle competitors as well.


  • Has one of the smoothest actions of any lever action rifle in its price range,
  •  Henry 22 is the lightest model on the list
  • Great for both small game and target shooting


  • Expensive than other models
  • Since it's not automatic,  you may become frustrated with the trigger or lack of speed

Henry .22 Rifle

henry lever action 22 rifle


This lever action .22 is incredibly reliable. Because it doesn’t use a semi-automatic action, you won’t have to worry as much about jams or malfunctions. With a little practice, you’ll have far more speed than a bolt action rifle. While the weight of each rifle isn’t significantly different, the Henry 22 is the lightest model on the list. Its American-made quality is very highly rated, and customers love this .22 for both small game and target shooting. Choose a scope and discover the easy-to-use mounting system. It has one of the smoothest actions of any lever action rifle in its price range, and the action is designed to be comfortable for all hand sizes, even while wearing gloves. For a classic, western feel, a lever action .22 is remarkably enjoyable to own and shoot. When it comes to target shooting, one of the most important features is how enjoyable the rifle is to operate.


When looking for a bargain, the Henry 22 rifle is more expensive than other models, such as the Marlin Model 60. While it’s lightweight and easy-to-use, it’s very similar in size and weight to the other .22 rifles on this list. If you don’t find lever action rifles to be particularly enjoyable, you may become frustrated with the trigger or lack of speed. While reliable, the Henry 22 isn’t as versatile as other rifles, like the CZ 455 American. Considering the price tag, decide how often you’ll use this .22 rifle, which generally isn’t a large enough caliber for more common hunting, like a good deer hunting rifle.

What Is a Henry .22 Rifle?

To understand why this rifle is such a popular choice, take a look at various aspects of the rifle. From the manufacturer’s reputation to the caliber and lever action, there are many reasons to choose the Henry 22 rifle.

Henry Repeating Arms

Founded in 1996, Henry Repeating Arms is already one of the leading firearms manufacturers. The company is in the top five ranking for manufacturing long guns and is number seven in overall firearms production. The Golden Boy and the lever action .22 are the two most popular rifles produced by Henry Repeating Arms. While it hasn’t been around for generations, the style and craftsmanship of this company reach back to the days of cowboys and a more rugged era.

Popular .22 Rifle

The .22 rifle is a popular caliber choice for a variety of uses. It’s on the smaller end of hunting rifles, so you won’t want to take it for any big game hunts. It’s not a great choice for a medium game like deer, either. This rifle really works well as a small game hunting and target shooting rifle. .22 rifles are lightweight, easy-to-use, affordable and don’t have the heavy recoil of larger caliber rifles. Because it has such little recoil, it’s a comfortable rifle for beginners. The ammunition is less expensive than some calibers as well, which is great for extended use. There is an extensive amount of ammunition with different calibers, so take your time and research the best gauge for your needs. If you are looking for a deer hunting rifle or a large game gun, this isn’t the caliber for you. However, for a quieter, more comfortable around, it’s a great choice. Pick up a .22 for hunting squirrels, grouse, and other small varmints. .22 rounds also have a great range of fire, particularly with rifles, like the ones on this list.

Lever Action, and Other Action Types

There are several action types available for .22 rifles. Take a look at each one and determine which one best suits your needs. While lever action may seem outdated, it’s an effective means of increasing your rate-of-fire without using a semi-automatic action. Regardless of the type you choose, each rifle must load, feed, fire, extract and eject. These four basic action types for rifles will cover all of these steps. Each action type is very popular and effective with its individual group of users, so which gun to buy is just as much a matter of personal preference as it is effectiveness.

Bolt Action

First, there are bolt action rifles. These rifles use a sliding bolt and can accommodate the longest cartridges of all. The trigger is usually better on these rifles, but each one is slightly different. While it’s still able to malfunction and jam, bolt action is generally the most reliable. However, it’s also the slowest, so it’s not ideal for a high rate of fire. Choose a bolt action if you want a reliable rifle, and plan on only needing one shot.

Lever Action

Lever action rifles are lightweight, reliable and can be very fast. This action type is another option for reliability and simplicity. However, the trigger mechanism is often worse than other action types. It’s one of the best balances between simplicity and rate of fire. Rifles shouldn’t be seen only as tools, but also for sport. With that in mind, a lever action rifle is one of the most enjoyable styles to fire. It takes some skill to balance accuracy with the rate of fire, but after a few rounds, you’ll see why so many avid gun owners own a lever action or two.

Pump Action

Hunting Outlaw Style

The pump action isn’t just made for shotguns but can be used with several different rifle variations as well. Pump action can be used with even greater speeds than lever action but tends to be slightly bulkier and can rattle. This makes it less practical for stealthy situations, like hunting small game. It still takes some practice to increase your rate of fire while maintaining an accurate pattern, but it’s another enjoyable action to learn.

Semi-Automatic Action

Last but not least, semi-automatic rifles have the very best rate of fire, making it easy to shoot rapidly, even without practice. Depending on the rifle, they can also be quite accurate. However, this action type tends to be more expensive, and need more regular maintenance. Because of the additional moving parts, it’s much easier to jam semi-automatic rifles, so you’ll need to keep up your routine maintenance. Some avid gun owners feel the semi-automatic action takes some of the skill and fun out of shooting, but others love the convenience of this easy-to-use action.

Specifications of the Henry 22 Rifle

  • Lever action
  • 18.25-inch barrel
  • Round blued-steel
  • Adjustable rear sight
  • American walnut stock
  • Weight: 5.25 pounds

The Henry 22 rifle is an excellent combination of portable, practical and cost-effective options. While it isn’t the most inexpensive model on the market, it’s reliable, American craftsmanship makes it well worth the price tag. Consider the beautiful, walnut stock, stylish and easy-to-use lever action and compact size, and you’ll see why this rifle is such a popular choice. It’s excellent for small game, and the rear sight can easily be outfitted with a scope for more accuracy. The 15-round capacity will keep you going for longer, and the 18.25-inch barrel is balanced between accuracy and portability. Whether it’s your first rifle or one in a long line of lovingly handled firearms, you won’t regret trying the Henry 22 rifle.


With rifles, there’s no limit to the amount you can spend. Consider rare or antique rifles, as well as handcrafted luxury stocks, and you’ll see rifles being sold for several thousands of dollars. Thankfully, .22 rifles are quite affordable and provide you with excellent features for a low price. The rifles on this list range from $209.00 to $421.00. The Henry .22 rifle is right in the middle of the price range, giving you a great balance of affordable features and high-end quality. Whether it’s a necessity or not, buying a rifle is a big decision. Don’t buy a .22 rifle without carefully researching your possibilities, understanding the safety requirements and being prepared to treat it with respect and responsibility.

Because of its size and price, the Henry .22 rifle makes an excellent choice for first-time buyers. There are, however, many reasons to choose other .22 rifle brands, so look at each one before choosing the best .22 rifle for all your target-shooting and small-game hunting needs.

How It Compares

Henry .22 Rifle

  • Ease of Use: 5 stars
  • Build Quality: 5 stars
  • Warranty: 4 stars

Marlin Model 60

  • Ease of Use: 4 stars
  • Build Quality: 4 stars
  • Warranty: 5 stars

This semi-automatic .22 rifle is an excellent bargain for a great rifle. The length of pull is slightly shorter than with other brands, which gives you a smoother shot. It comes with a 19-inch barrel, with a total of 16 grooves. This rifle also comes with a walnut stock and with a full pistol grip. A 14-shot magazine will keep you going, and the semi-automatic action gives you an excellent rate of fire. While it lacks the durability and reliability of a lever action rifle, the Model 60 remains one of the most popular .22 rifles in the world. If you’re willing to stay on top of cleaning, oiling and maintaining this rifle, it will be a reliable and effective tool for both small-game hunting and sports shooting. With one look at the price tag, you’ll see why it’s such a popular option.

CZ 455 American

  • Ease of Use: 4 stars
  • Build Quality: 5 stars
  • Warranty: 4 stars

Before you turn down this pricey bolt-action rifle, look at the versatile options that come included with your purchase. For just $421.00, you not only get a great quality .22 rifle, but it comes with a barrel change option. You have all the necessary parts to use this rifle with a .17HMR barrel, as well as the .22 barrel. It’s a popular choice and gives you the flexibility to test out another great caliber. The bolt action type gives you excellent dependability and ease of use. However, you lose some of the rates of fire that the competitors have, particularly the Marlin Model 60. The CZ 455 only includes a five-round magazine, but the Turkish walnut stock is beautifully designed, with a pistol grip. Consider purchasing a scope to take advantage of the increased accuracy and trigger of this bolt action .22.


For its iconic look, reliable use and relatively inexpensive price, the Henry 22 rifle receives 4 out of 5 stars. It’s an excellent choice for fans of westerns, lever actions or unique, but iconic, rifles. A .22 rifle is a great choice for small game but isn’t practical for anything larger. While it isn’t the most versatile, fast or affordable .22 on the market, it’s a fun rifle with a great look. If you’re looking for a rifle for a first-time shooter, or need something fun to shoot, try the Henry 22 rifle. You’ll see why it remains one of the most popular choices for a lever action .22 rifle that’s loved by inexperienced hunters and professional sportsman alike.



The best deer hunting rifle

Whether it’s your first big hunt or you’re a seasoned veteran. There are few things more important than your rifle. Finding a deer-hunting rifle is easy, but finding the best deer hunting rifle can be a challenge.

As you do for any other tool, you want to carefully research each option before choosing the best rifle for the job. Each rifle is specifically designed for a particular purpose. Whether you are hunting big game on the open plain or chasing smaller animals through the woods, you’ll want the right gear for a safe, enjoyable and successful hunt.

Here is a list of some of the best hunting rifles on the market today. It’s by no means all of the rifles available, and there are many great options that didn’t make this list. Look through the FAQs to better appreciate each of these finely crafted rifles.

And get to know your gun and its safety features before going out on your next big hunt. If you want your rifle to last a lifetime, make sure to take proper care of your equipment.

The Best Deer Hunting Rifle Comparison Table

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Remington Model 700 Sendero SF II

Remington Model 700 Sendero SF II best deer hunting rifle

Vanguard Safari

Vanguard Safari best deer hunting rifle

Ruger American Rifle Magnum

Ruger American Rifle Magnum best deer hunting rifle

H&R Synthetic Handi-Rifle

H&R Synthetic Handi-Rifle best deer hunting rifle

Tikka T3 Hunter

Tikka T3 Hunter best deer hunting rifle

Sako 85 Finnlight

Sako 85 Finnlight best deer hunting rifle


DPMS GII AP4 best deer hunting rifle

Here's A Full Review of
the best deer hunting rifle

Remington Model 700 Sendero SF II

Remington Model 700 Sendero SF II best deer hunting rifle

Made for accuracy, this bolt-action 7mm rifle is an excellent choice for long-range kill shots. It has an ambidextrous grip and can be equipped with a bipod for additional accuracy and support. With a 26-inch barrel it’s the longest rifle on this list.

The fluted barrel helps with heat dissipation, and the sleek look gives you no-nonsense power and performance. For a calm, steady hunter who likes to line up the perfect long-range shot, this is a great rifle.


  • Accuracy
  • An excellent choice for long-range kill shots
  • Fluted barrel helps with heat dissipation


  • It's expensive

Vanguard Safari

Vanguard Safari best deer hunting rifle

This stylish rifle has a beautiful European walnut stock and hand-rubbed oil finish. It’s another bolt-action, accurate rifle. The adjustable trigger ensures you get a clean shot, and you won’t have to worry about tugging the trigger or any delay in action. With a powerful .30-06 you’ll be thankful for the comfortable recoil pad.

The bolt body is also fluted which gives you smooth action and eliminates resistance. It only has a 24-inch barrel, but it’s significantly less expensive than the Remington Model 700 Sendero SF II. It’s a great rifle for a balance between long range, lightweight and cost-effective hunting.


  • A beautiful European walnut stock
  • Adjustable Match Quality, Two-stage Trigger
  • Vanguard Recoil Pad


  • Will shoot half inch

Ruger American Rifle Magnum

Ruger American Rifle Magnum best deer hunting rifle

One of the more inexpensive rifles, the Ruger American Rifle Magnum is a straightforward choice. Its .300 Win Mag won’t sacrifice any power for affordability, and the single-column magazine gives you a 3-round capacity. It comes with a scope rail so you can add a scope for greater accuracy. It has a more modern look and can also come with .338 Win Mag.


  • Ergonomic, lightweight nylon synthetic stock designed for quick
  • Offers a crisp release with a pull weight that is user adjustable between 3 and 5 pounds, allowing shooters to make that perfect shot.
  • Features a visible, accessible and easy-to-actuate tang safety that provides instant security


  • With lighter bullets the rifle was consistently inconsistent

H&R Synthetic Handi-Rifle

H&R Synthetic Handi-Rifle best deer hunting rifle

The least-expensive rifle, the Handi-Rifle is one of the only small-caliber rifles on this list. The .22 Hornet gives this rifle far less recoil and weight than other, larger-caliber choices. Because of this it’s a great rifle for young hunters.

The 22-inch barrel is still long enough for mid-range shots, and the overall length of 38 inches is good for easy carrying. Of course it won’t have the stopping power of a high-powered rifle, so you’ll want to line up the perfect shot. If you’re a casual hunter looking for a great deal or if your teenager is looking to join your next hunt, this is a great choice.


  • High-density polymer, black matte finish, sling swivel studs, recoil pad, Monte Carlo stock.
  • Scope mount rail and hammer extension; no iron sights
  • 38" length


  • Small-caliber rifle

Tikka T3 Hunter

Tikka T3 Hunter best deer hunting rifle

This rifle has an incredible amount of customization. While the .308 is a popular choice, you can choose anything from .243 Win, 7mm Rem Mag or .30-06. You can also purchase a variety of barrel lengths for this versatile rifle. This rifle has a wide and angled ejection port which is convenient for feeding and ejecting cartridges correctly every time.

The stock is specifically designed to lower the noise so you’ll be able to take your time. If a .308 gives you too much recoil, you’ll enjoy the comfortable recoil pad. This particular option comes with a slightly shorter barrel which is great for a compact, stalking design. If you prefer a longer barrel, there are several options available. It’s a great rifle for the avid hunter if you know the exact caliber and barrel length you prefer.


  • Top performance as well as a classic style and feel
  • Built with traditional principles and modern innovation, providing you with a new level of accuracy, reliability, and enjoyment


  • Shorter barrel

Sako 85 Finnlight

Sako 85 Finnlight best deer hunting rifle

This durable, high-quality rifle is designed to be used in a variety of climates and is compact enough for long treks, tired arms or younger hunters. It’s got plenty of power with .308 Win Mag. The fluted barrel helps cool it much faster and also gives it less weight. The stock is comfortable and efficient. The overall look is a bit plain, but the subtle style creates a sturdy, no-nonsense feel. It’s great for someone looking for an affordable, lightweight rifle that still provides a powerful and accurate shot.


  • Durable, high-quality rifle
  • Designed to be used in a variety of climates and is compact enough for long treks, tired arms or younger hunters
  • Fluted barrel helps cool it much faster and also gives it less weight


  • Subtle style creates a sturdy, no-nonsense feel


DPMS GII AP4 best deer hunting rifle

This award-winning rifle has a tremendous number of features and high-quality craftsmanship. It won the Golden Bullseye Award from the NRA which means you can trust it’s an excellent product. It’s designed to be compact, lightweight, durable and accurate. This tactical rifle isn’t as long-range as some of the other more traditional deer-hunting selections.

However, it’s designed for efficiency and has an extraction system that avoids ejection malfunctions. The magazine is beveled which is easy to change and comfortable to hold. Its heavy-duty construction includes an upper and lower that is forged. The steel feed ramp has excellent ammunition-feeding functionality. If you are looking for a professionally designed rifle with excellent features and a lightweight package, this is a great choice for you.


  • Won the Golden Bullseye Award from the NRA which means you can trust it’s an excellent product
  • For efficiency and has an extraction system that avoids ejection malfunctions
  • The steel feed ramp has excellent ammunition-feeding functionality


  • The simple addition of a threaded muzzle is not good

FAQs About The Best Deer Hunting Rifle

What Makes a Great Hunting Rifle?

There are several factors to consider when looking for the best deer hunting rifle. Obviously, you’ll want one with the great build quality and thoughtful engineering. Each of these rifles is designed for particular needs, so take these factors into account.

First, you want to choose a rifle with the right caliber. Next, take a look at the length of your barrel, and decide what type of hunting you’ll be doing and at what distance you expect to make your shot. You should also consider the action type: whether you want the long-range bolt-action, break-action or semi-automatic.

There are many different tools and features to consider, but these are the biggest factors when determining which rifle will best suit your needs.

Professional Gun Reviews

Which Caliber Do I Need For a Deer Hunting Rifle?

Finding the perfect caliber is like finding the holy grail. Many hunters, professional and amateur, have different feelings about which caliber is best suited for deer. There are many pros and cons when choosing your caliber, and over time you may find yourself favoring a particular caliber. The caliber refers to the diameter of the barrel’s interior.

Most rifles on this list are larger caliber rifles. .308 Win Mag, .30-06 and 7mm are all heavy-duty rifles that have lots of recoil. You may feel they are too powerful for deer hunting, but the extra power is great for longer shots and bigger deer. You won’t want to take a .30-30 to a trophy hunt.

There are many calibers available, and some hunters prefer smaller, more portable rifles with less recoil. Calibers like .243 and .270 are great for these close encounters. Whichever type you prefer there are many pros and cons, so try a few out before settling on your preferred caliber.

What Length Barrel Should I Use?

There are two factors to consider in choosing the length of your barrel. First, a longer barrel can give you more accuracy for a long-range shot. Second, a longer barrel adds both weight and length which can make your gun heavy enough to hold steady or too heavy to carry comfortably through the woods.

Depending on the type of hunting you are doing, the amount you’ll be walking and the length of shot you hope to take, you’ll want to choose the right barrel size for your specific hunting style.

The most common barrels are around 24 inches. These are a bit on the long side but give you some nice accuracy as you look for the perfect shot. The smallest barrel on this list is 16 inches. It’s too small for long-range shooting, but this lightweight and compact design is great for stalking or tracking deer.

What Do I Need Before I Hunt Deer?

Do you have a rifle, and are you ready to hunt? In the excitement of a new purchase, whether you have one rifle or 100 you’ll no doubt be ready to get shooting.

However, there are many other factors to consider before going out. You’ll want to carefully research the rest of the gear you need, including safety gear like a hunter’s orange vest. Next you’ll want to look for local deer-season laws and the necessary tags and training you’ll need.

Deer hunting can be both invigorating and dangerous, and your careful planning can make the difference between the two. There are also plenty of tools and gear available to give you a more comfortable and effective hunt.

Everything from a rifle sling to binoculars to scents and calls can make the difference between a miserable or successful and comfortable hunt. Proper clothing, safety and preparation are just as important as a proper rifle and understanding of your rifle. Be sure to review all the safety features of your rifle before use.

How We Reviewed The Best Deer Hunting Rifle

Each of these rifles was selected based on a number of factors. First, they are all highly rated by professional reviewers. Next, they are best sellers and popular among buyers. These rifles are well priced, rugged and able to meet all your deer-hunting needs. Because of the number of factors that go into choosing a great rifle this isn’t a complete list of all the top-rated rifles, but it’s a good snapshot of some excellent-quality choices. Depending on your hunting style and caliber preferences you may or may not find the best hunting rifle for you on this list.

Here's A Video About How to Pick a Rifle Caliber for Deer Hunting

Price Range of The Best Deer Hunting Rifle

For the best deer hunting rifle, the sky's the limit for a price range. You can easily spend several thousand dollars on an exquisitely crafted rifle. However, for a balance of practicality and cost-effectiveness the rifles on this list range from mid-range to high-range. This represents a good investment without extravagant features that aren’t necessary.

Determine how much you are willing to spend, and look for a rifle that suits both your style and wallet. There are a few factors that affect the price range. The caliber and barrel length can dramatically increase the price so less expensive rifles may not necessarily be of lower quality. The type of material the upper, lower and stock are built with also affect the price.

The Verdict of The Best Deer Hunting Rifle

Now that you’ve reviewed some of the best deer hunting rifle options on the market. Carefully consider the type of hunting you most enjoy. Whether you are looking for a long-range mule deer hunt on the plains or stalking elusive whitetails through the woods, there are many options when it comes to deer hunting.

Once you have decided on the type of hunting, you need to consider which options will best suit your style. A long-barreled, accurate model like the Remington Model 700 Sendero SF II works well for a smooth, careful kill shot. On the other hand, if you need to hike long distances and have low visibility, the DPMS GII AP4 or the H&R Synthetic Handi-Rifle would be great choices.

Whichever model you choose, any rifle on this list will give you a durable, accurate choice for deer hunting.

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