Opinions wanted on the Rossi single shot rifles.


November 4, 2009, 11:44 AM
I am looking to purchase my cousin a rossi matched pair .22lr/410ga. What is everyone opinions on the rifle? I like that it is a single shot, and not too complicated but it should be fine for a first rifle for a 9 year old. I want all pro's, con's, and gripes (eg. rossi sucks.... but I won't pay much attention to that last group there). Would a cricket be a better choice. Are there any other rifles you would recommend? NO SEMIAUTOMATICS if you are suggesting a different maker / model. Thanks in advance.

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November 4, 2009, 02:37 PM
Is it so bad that nobody wishes to say anything? I have seen nothing but great reviews, but they were all from 08. I'm just wondering how they have held up.

Thanks again.

November 4, 2009, 03:23 PM
I've been wanting to get one for a few years, but can't give you any feedback from personal experience.

I did use a H&R single-shot shotgun most of the time growing up, so I can attest to a single's usefulness and handiness.


November 4, 2009, 03:33 PM
John, I was taught on "singles". Singles in so much as I would have been whooped bad if I tried to put one in the magazine. I just think they are great for beginners rifles. I'll post a writeup on it in about a year when he gets it (pending approval from his Mom of course).

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
November 4, 2009, 03:45 PM
They're ok for the money. But the one I had actually flew open every time you fired a shot, as in, it disengaged itself and opened up immediately upon firing (immediately AFTER firing that is) - not good. Probably not indicative of every one of their guns, but doesn't inspire confidence.

November 4, 2009, 03:48 PM

Had similar experience with an H'n'R Handirifle in 30-06... Made me, um.... Uncomfortable.

The handirifle apparently doesn't tolerate oil in the action....


November 4, 2009, 03:48 PM
Tad, what caliber was it in? These things come in a few calibers, so I am curious.

Arkansas Paul
November 4, 2009, 03:51 PM
My two nephews have Rossi singles in .223 and have been happy with them so far. They've had them for about three years now and have even killed a few deer with them. I don't see a problem with them and I agree on a single shot for a beginner. Good choice.

Dr. Tad Hussein Winslow
November 4, 2009, 03:55 PM
scythe, mine was in .243 Win - it was reasonably accurate, and on paper is a much better deal than the H&R Handi (HAS a safety, lower profile hammer, etc.), but when it started to do that, I gave it to my half-brother, who's never shot it, and probably won't ever shoot it unless I take him to the gun range. I told him about the issue, too. Doesn't seem to be a real danger, as the pressure is fully released out the barrel it seems, before it opens....but still.

November 4, 2009, 03:55 PM
I don't know about the Rossi. I have a .17 HMR New England Firearms similar to this one:


With a 3x9 Leupold, it is sudden death on ground squirrels. Got mine used (sans scope) for about $100. Made in the USA.

November 4, 2009, 05:44 PM
I also have had good experience with new england firearms.

November 4, 2009, 06:53 PM
I have no long term experiance with one I have had the 22/410 youth model for about two weeks here is my experiance so far . The 22 barrel is more accurate than I an capable of shooting Iron sights I do with the iron sight were metal the 410 seems to shoot ok. I have only shot paper with the 410, The 22 I have shot the 22 at paper, dirt clods, cans, etc. I have fire it at game once. I killed a jet black squirrel at thirty yards. my only concern would by that being as light as it is it might recoil a little much for a real small child. I have a scale like they use in the deli dept. in grocery stores. with the 410 barrel on it, It weighs 3.36 lbs

November 4, 2009, 07:17 PM
I vastly prefer the H&R/NEF single shots. The Rossi's that I've shot and handled have all been very loose and sloppy around the hinge pin, and really didn't seem as if they'd take any real abuse at all. Once closed, they locked up OK but the wobbliness while open really was not indicative of build quality. I suppose they're accurate enough - the one I shot was not scoped - but I don't know why I'd buy one when I can get the vastly superior H&R for around the same cost.

For reference - I bought a youth H&R combo last year. It had a 20ga barrel, a 22LR barrel, and a 7mm08 barrel. It cost me $289 plus tax.

November 5, 2009, 01:34 PM
rbernie, I am looking at a 120 dollar gun. 250 or more is not in the same ball park. I'll take a look at the nef/H&R.

November 5, 2009, 03:10 PM
I used to own one of the .22/20 Rossi matched pars. It seemed like a durable enough gun. It was a fun gun, but it was not as accurate as I would have liked with the rimfire barrel. The fiber optic sights were nice. Braztech/Taurus/Rossi CS= horrible.

Personally, I believe that a single shot bolt action would be a better buy. I would recommend a Marlin (9)15YN over the break action any day of the week. The Marlin is also a little bigger than the cricket- it will last your son a lot longer.

November 5, 2009, 03:43 PM
mp510 - my rossi experience vastly differs from yours then. My M68 has never failed me and after several thousand rounds it is as tight as the day it was brought home.

Why do you believe that a single shot bolt is better buy than a break action?

November 6, 2009, 01:35 AM
The H&R should be a slightly better rifle. The rossi is about a 5 inch gun nothing spectacular. The H&R is about a 3 inch gun. I sell them.

November 6, 2009, 03:11 AM
I am unfamiliar with the terms "5 inch gun" and "3 inch gun". What do you mean by that?

November 6, 2009, 10:59 AM
I think the terms "3 inch gun" and "5 inch gun" refer to group size at 100 yards.

Of course, he COULD mean naval artillery......:p

Bill B
November 6, 2009, 01:58 PM
I bought the cricket for my 8 year old boy.It is the perfect size for a little guy,has peep sights and is accurate enough to make shotgun shells dance at 25 yards.

November 6, 2009, 04:52 PM
I have not shot either of these to compare groups but if they shoot 5" groups and the H&R shoots 3" groups why would you buy either? That's a horrible group size. I will say the NEF I handled didn't impress me at all. Infact if I was buying it I would have given more than $100 for it with the scope and all. It just looked and felt like a $100 gun to me. I see so many people that get their kids single shots to learn on only to upgrade in a few months to a year. I don't get it. Why not just get something nice like a decent bolt action that your kid can use now and will actually want to use in the future. Not to mention if you go with something like a Marlin XL7 if your looking for a rifle you will certainly get better than 3" groups.

November 7, 2009, 12:30 AM
hometheaterman - your assuming that he will be shooting for groups. My favorite gun isn't but a 2 moa gun on my good days (M1 Garand). It isn't my most accurate gun, but it is the one I enjoy shooting the most.

The XL7 is a bit out of the price range and unsuited to my needs in this case.
1 - It also only comes in 3 calibers.. 270, 30-06, and 25-06. Two are very common calibers where he lives and both are too much to learn to shoot with. I haven't seen 25-06 in Peoria ever. Doesn't mean it isn't there, but it isn't common.
2 - You can't develop good form if you are afraid of the gun you are shooting. The .270 and the .30-06 will cause you to develop flinch if you don't have good form.
3 - I am also trying to keep the cost of ammo down for those who will be paying for his habit. .22lr is about the cheapest round you can get.
4 - I balked at a 250 dollar gun, why would someone recommend a 300+ dollar gun then?? I don't get it.
5 - If he does decide to hunt... he won't be using a rim fire or centerfire rifle. IL is shotgun only. I might look at the .22lr/20ga combo though.
6 - It doesn't come with iron sights. There is no use in teaching the basics if you aren't going to teach how to use iron sights. Scopes are pretty much point and click at 100y once they are dialed in. Iron sights require a bit more effort.

If you could recommend a sub 250 bolt action single shot .22lr I would love to hear it. Once he out grows the rossi/nef/H&R, he will have access to other guns to shoot. This will be HIS which will be the real difference.

November 7, 2009, 12:38 AM
My GF bought a Rossi .22lr/ .410 combo because its pink and she collects pink guns. Well long story short I like hers so much I got one for myself as a truck gun in the .22lr/ 20 gauge.

November 7, 2009, 12:57 AM
The set is heavy. I worry that my kid might not be able to hold it still. I bought it on sale for 115 buck or so. It came with a wooden stock, so if I need to trim it for use I can, and since it is so cheap not feel guilty about it. Still a nice set to have. I took out the 20 ga barrel, and slipped in 4 boxes of 22's into the carrying case. Nice, compact and handy to have.
Wait for a sale and if you don't like it you can get you $ back when you resell.

November 7, 2009, 01:00 AM
As for the OP I wasn't suggestion a XL7 for him. I just saw quite a few other posters saying they had these in center fire calibers. For a .22 rifle I'd go to Wallyworld and pick up a Savage either bolt action or a Marlin 60 or Savage semi auto. I know you said you didn't want a semi auto though so that's why I say I'd get the Savage bolt action. I think it's $117 here and seems like a nice gun. Now it wouldn't have a .410 barrel but as he got older he would still want a good decent .22 and the single shot one may or may not be the one he wants. In most cases I've seen the single shots are not the ones they want later on. I'd decide if he needs a .22 or .410 more and buy him a decent one that he will want to keep and enjoy a lifetime and maybe even pass down to his kids.

November 7, 2009, 01:02 AM
I also know if I had started of learning to shoot with a gun that shot 5" groups I would probably have been turned off to shoot. With groups like that you can't hit a squirrel in the head time after time you can't shoot tops off soda bottles you might and that's a might be able to hit a soda bottle but certainly not the top unless you got lucky. 5" is huge for groups. Why not get him something accurate so that he doesn't get frustrated when he can't hit anything.

fireman 9731
November 7, 2009, 01:23 AM
The handirifle apparently doesn't tolerate oil in the action....

That is a fact!

I tried lubing up the action of my H&R Buffalo Classic in 45-70, the same thing would happen, the action would open up all by itself after it fired. I sprayed some Brakeclean on the lock-up mechanism and it fixed it in a jiffy!

I have never owned a Rossi, but I can attest to the handiness of a 22/410 combo, My Savage Model 24-SE is potent for squirrels and pest control, and I would imagine great for a youngster to learn on.

Bud Tugly
November 7, 2009, 01:31 AM
I've got a Rossi with the .22 and .410 barrels. I'm not a serious shooter, but the .22 barrel puts holes in tin cans at 30 yards or so very nicely and is fun and very safe.

The shotgun barrel is modified choke rather than the full choke found on most .410's. It patterns nicely out to about 25-30 yards, which is about the effective range of a .410.

Rather than being loose, the action on mine was a bit tight, but it's loosening up with use. For the price I paid ($109) II don't see how you can go wrong. He'll have fun with it for a few years and want to trade up for seeming else in a few years anyway.

November 7, 2009, 02:40 AM
hometheater - 3 inch groups at 100 y = 3/4 inch groups at 25y. He might not be able to take the bottle cap off a bottle, but I bet he could shoot out the pepsi logo.
At 15y, he is in the bottle cap accuracy range. Again, you are very focused on pin point accuracy. You probably wouldn't like my garand either because it only shoots 2 inch groups (which isn't taking bottle caps off either). I'll look at the savage. If he wants to shoot different rifles when his skill surpasses his beginner rifle, we have an Anschutz, a mossberg 144, a marlin .22lr that will clover leaf at 15y, and others for him to move to. IF he gets into target shooting, we can equip that, but first things first. There is an argument for getting him a gun that is more accurate.. but then again he may not get into shooting that much. I guess I should also pitch my sks as it is a 4 moa gun... oh wait ... I still have fun shooting it as well.

3 inch groups and 5 inch groups mean nothing if you don't have a range to go with them. 3 - 5 inches will be on the paper, and in an 8in bullseye target. The range he will be shooting at only goes out to 100y but it can get as close as he wants. As he gets better, we move him out further, but we start him in at like 15y. I will take a couple of sessions, maybe months before he is shooting even somewhat consistently. With a couple of weeks in between 1-2 hour shooting sessions, it will take a while for things to start to click.

November 7, 2009, 03:04 AM
I think the NEF/H&Rs are better built and you can get them in combo's as well... saw a .357mag 12 gauge last week.... would be a cool set.

November 7, 2009, 09:58 AM
Dicks regularly sells a Mossberg 22lr bolt action for $99 dollars and the Savage bolt action for $160.

November 10, 2009, 03:19 PM
Makster.. I am leaning that way now. I went and handled the rossi. It'll be fine for a .22, but the shotgun barrel would be brutal. I would be afraid to shoot 20 ga slugs out of it, and I shoot my Mossy 500 with slugs from the prone. Man was that thing light.

Crickets are also off the list. What is the point of having a bolt action if the bolt doesn't cock the rifle?

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