Thumbhole or Not


May 1, 2012, 01:50 PM
I am planning to buy a Savage model 25 Lightweight Varminter in 22 Hornet and am trying to decide whether or not to spend a little more for the thumbhole stock. I have handled a few and find the grip usually too big. My hands are sorta medium size and didn't fit larger grips. The only reason I am considering it is that some folks love them. Would like to hear from shooters out there who have had experience with both. Thanks for the help.

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May 1, 2012, 01:58 PM
I don't have extended experience shooting varmints with them, but here are my impressions from a few shoots:

I like the thumbhole stock on a rifle that I won't be carrying. The stock seems to keep my cheek weld higher and more inline with the scope (especially if it is mounted higher).

I don't use the thumbhole like a pistol grip however, I keep my hand on it like I am giving a "thumbs up" sign as opposed to grasping it like a handgun. That allows me to make a better trigger pull, and it makes the size of the grip not matter as much.

May 1, 2012, 02:42 PM
I'm not a fan for hunting rifles, since my wrist/hand/arm movement while shouldering a gun from waist-height and the top of the thumbhole conflict. YMMV.

Also, with a bolt action, follow up shots are slower, since you have to pull your hand further away from the rifle to get your thumb out of the hole, and then come back in to work the bolt, and then back out and back in to re-grip.

I have two 10/22's - one for bench and one for hunting - and the bench set-up has a thumbhole stock and is great....but for hunting, I have a Hogue stock. The wrist of that stock makes hunting motions much easier.

May 1, 2012, 02:59 PM
I have two and like them well enough. They are more comfortable when for prolonged position shooting, but make the rifle slower to manipulate. They also usually have a longer distance between grip and trigger. I have larger hand so thos appeals to me.

For a setup and shoot type rifle i highly endorse them, for faster action i dont like them very much.

May 1, 2012, 03:32 PM
I mostly plan to shoot p-dogs with the Hornet, so it is a big help to hear from shooters who shoot varmints and paper and have experience with both thumbholes and straight stocks. I almost never get in a hurry for second shots so wouldn't be too concerned about speed. Thanks for the feedback.


Charles S
May 1, 2012, 03:39 PM
If you ever switch shoulders a thumb hole does not work.

I would never have a thumb hole stock on a hunting rifle because at times I will shoot left handed, but I have realized that I am one of the few people who do that.


May 1, 2012, 03:45 PM
For varmints or paper, I prefer a thumbhole or other target-type stock. For other types of hunting, where walking or other shooting positions are used, I prefer a straight stock.

May 1, 2012, 08:18 PM
You can fire a thunbhole wronghanded, you hold it like allaroumdhunter suggests and use a light cheak weld. For a varmint rifle this should not be a problem tho as improvised positions arnt usually required. Ive shot two deer left handed with my .300, its not exactly pleasant but its doable.

May 1, 2012, 09:58 PM
I shoot hogs out of a blind at night. I like to hold a light with my left hand and the pistol grip gives me much better control for one handed rifle shooting. If you have a steady rest for the front end you can make very accurate sots.

Art Eatman
May 1, 2012, 10:09 PM
I'm so accustomed to non-thumbhole stocks that I bang a knuckle when I go to cycle the bolt. I can never remember to first go sideways before moving up to the bolt handle. I've found that for me it's definitely a slower cycle time in reloading.

May 1, 2012, 11:05 PM
I have three rim fire rifles with TH stocks. I like them, but I shoot from the bench 90% of the time. They might be a little awkward for a carry around gun. The one exception is a Marlin 60 that's in a Boyd's TH.

May 2, 2012, 09:58 AM
These comments have been very helpful. Thank you all. I have decided, based on my needs and your feedback, to skip the thumbhole stock for my 22 Hornet.

Art Eatman
May 2, 2012, 10:33 AM
Hokay. Let us know how everything works out with your Hornet.

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