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Old December 3, 2014, 05:02 AM   #1
Sharpie443
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Marlin Model xt 22: Good potential bad execution

I had one of these guns fall into my lap recently and although I’m happy I got it for free I thought I would put my thought about it out there in a review.

I would say the upside of this rife is that it is quite actuate. The trigger is great and at 25 yards I was getting very good groups. After the video I spent some time sighting it in and was able to hit my 4” steel plate at 50 yards without much of a problem. This rifle had Marlins micro groove rifling witch I have found works very well and I absolutely love my Marlin model 25Mn in .22 mag with micro groves. This rifle has a lot of potential and I honestly think that it could be competing on the market with higher priced rifles.
The down side the rifle suffers for the same problem other new production Marlin have. The Details and finish work are not good on it and it looks like they went cheap out on some things. The stock sights are absolutely terrible for starts and I can’t see why they couldn’t spend a few bucks more for a sight capable of easy fine tuning. I would love to see a Lyman peep sight on it but anything would work. They sight they have on it now is just about the cheapest sight you could find. The rifle is tapped for a scope but I don’t use a scope for small game hunting and I prefer to target shoot with iron and peep sights. So this is a drawback to and I will probably end up putting a Lyman peep sight on it.

The dig disappointment for me is the bolt throw is absolutely terrible. It feels like they did not smooth out the receiver making for a very gritty feeling and causes it to stick. It’s also very hard to close to keeping your sight picture while working the bolt is not possible. I have old Mossberg .22 rifles that I caught for $100 that feel 10x better than this new production gun.

Granted It is only a $200 gun however what bothers me is like any of marlins products this gun has a lot of potential. They have cheeped out on the details and basic finish work just save a few bucks when they could be selling this rifle for more and it would be worth it if they just invested a bit more into the rifle. Thy have a great rifle they just gave on paper they just dropped the ball in manufacturing mostly in the finish work. It’s they ran a marathon and gave up in the last half mile because that was good enough.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RMcQ...cUH0CTk3VqtM6w
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Old December 3, 2014, 12:53 PM   #2
chicharrones
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I don't think a 6 lb. rifle has to pigeon holed as a bench gun. It looks like a field gun to me.

Is the bolt sticking only on chambered ammo? Maybe the gun has a tight chamber. One thing is for sure, shooting off hand with one hand on the forend will provide some needed leverage when working the bolt.

Marlin did keep the MSRP down by offering basic sights, but for $75 a nice set of Tech Sights can be had. http://www.tech-sights.com/mxt200.htm
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Old December 3, 2014, 01:15 PM   #3
Sharpie443
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I shoot better in that stance so i wouldn't change that. The bolt is gritty and is hard even when the charmer is empty. it's just more so when there is a spent case in it.

As for the sights If i was going for an after market sight i would put Lyman peep sight on it for $25 more than that one. My problem is just how cheap they went with it. They didn't need to put an exceptional target sight on it but simple adjustable sight that would have only cost them a few bucks more would have been nice. They cut corners and it's not impressing me. I'll gladly pay $400-$500 for a CZ 452 or 455 because they are quality guns right out of the box. If they are in a race to the bottom to see who can cut costs the most then are probably going to get beat by Keystone Sporting Arms or Savage arms.

6 pounds is borderline for be in terms of being a bench gun. The rifles i use for small game are much lighter than that. If I'm going to walk around with a heaver gun i will just take one of my shotguns. However that is personal preference but I do think this gun is more suited for a bench in my opinion.
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Old December 3, 2014, 01:21 PM   #4
chicharrones
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Well, it is your rifle.

What do you plan on doing to it in terms of upgrades? Does Lyman make a receiver sight for that model?
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Old December 3, 2014, 01:30 PM   #5
Sharpie443
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No I'll just have my gunsmith put on a Lyman 90 MJT http://www.lymanproducts.com/lyman/sights/90-mjt.php but the bolt bothers me a lot. If that doesn't smooth out in a few more boxes of rounds I'll probably sell the gun. My ww2 8mm Mauser has a smoother bolt throw and it looks like it's been dragged behind a truck.
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Old December 5, 2014, 05:17 AM   #6
Cee Zee
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My XT22 is excellent. It doesn't have any of the problems you describe. Obviously it has the same sights but they are exactly accurate at about 50 yards depending on the round used of course. I love the trigger and my bolt works very smooth.

I keep hearing about all these bad Marlins. I've bought at least 6 new Marlins during the time they were supposed to all be bad and I had problems with exactly one of them. A 925 that wouldn't feed perfectly every time was my only problem rifle. I could have it fixed under the warranty still but it isn't that bad actually. I actually gave it to my daughter to use anyway and she doesn't shoot it enough for it to matter. But my XT22 is twice the rifle that 925 is. The 925 is a beauty of a rifle with a very nice stock (for a Marlin) and it shoots accurate but it's just got a slight problem with feeding. I haven't had any sights no where they belong, no problems with fit and finish, nothing. And again I've bought a bunch of them since Freedom Group got involved. And the XT having been made at the new Kentucky plant is probably the best one of the bunch when it comes to things like smooth operation and fit and finish. It's a dang near perfect squirrel gun IMO. 25 rounds of shorts in the tube makes for a quick job of bagging my limit once I find the right tree.
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Old December 5, 2014, 09:27 PM   #7
ford8nr
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So it's a $200 .22 marketed to the masses. If you'd be willing to pay $300 for it, send it to your gunsmith for a peep and clean up the wear marks on the bolt/receiver with 600 / 1000 grit emery and for under $300 you have "your" bolt gun. I just bought a $239 Savage Axis .223...bad trigger, flimsy stock and crappy scope, but it IS a $239 gun. Redid the trigger already, plans to stiffen the stock and will replace the scope. Savage WILL sell a ton at $239, not so sure at $350.
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Old December 5, 2014, 10:17 PM   #8
d2wing
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I bought an XT-22 for my grandson branded as a Remington 914. The sights were not centered. I sent it in to be corrected and it was. It functions just fine and is very accurate. Just over 1/2 inch at 25 yards with match ammo and a cheap Simmons scope.
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Old December 7, 2014, 05:39 PM   #9
Vern Humphrey
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Get some 400 grit grease from any auto supply store and put it on the surfaces that are rubbing to cause that gritty feeling. Work the bolt from the shoulder about a thousand times, and then clean thoroughly with solvent, then re-lube and that should take care of the gritty bolt throw.

Midway www.midwayusa.com has both open and peep sights that should meet your needs.
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Old December 7, 2014, 09:57 PM   #10
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Y'know, my old Marlin model 60 seems like a mirror image of your XT as far as fit/ finish and factory sights. But I won't complain a bit, even though I had to pay cash money for mine. Heck, the gun is a shooter.
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Old December 8, 2014, 03:46 AM   #11
joustin
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I own an XT-22, I was out shooting it today actually. Mine is good, smooth action and shoots well. The iron sights are primitive but workable. I have an inexpensive BSA scope on it, so far it shoots very well. I have handled a few and some were hit or miss. I like it and even though it is a Remlin it is good quality.
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Old December 8, 2014, 06:29 PM   #12
Cee Zee
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Everything I've read about guns made in the Ky factory says they are much better than the stuff Remlin was putting out from other sites. Disgruntled employees often don't take pride in their work and sometimes they deliberately sabotage it. But again I've had very good luck with Marlin products over the past 6 years or so. I bought a 60SS in 2008 and it's the best shooting 60 I've ever owned or shot. And I''ve owned several personally. I still own 2. The new one is considerably more accurate than the old one. It won't feed as reliably but that's almost a given for semi-autos that shoot accurate. Tighter tolerances mean more accuracy but they also mean more feeding issues. I don't really have a problem with the new 60. I just actually have to clean it. I didn't clean my other one for the first 11 years I owned it. It never missed a beat until about 3 months before the 11 year cleaning I gave it. After that it was another 5 years before I cleaned it again. It sill shoots reliably and it's plenty accurate. But the new one is much more accurate. But of course what I consider "much more" is maybe not what others would think. I just know it shot well enough right of the box to shoot these groups at 90 yards within a week of buying it.

The circled holes are my groups. The other holes were shot by my friend with his new 10/22. There's a 7 shot group, a 5 shot group and a 3 shot group. That was a 15 round full tube set of shots. I shot the 3 shots in the bull first. I didn't want to risk messing up that group so I picked a spot on the target and shot it then shot at the bullet hole I made. I shot the 5 shot group first then moved to another spot on the target and shot the remaining 7 shots in my tube. I was shooting off a towel on the hood of a truck too. I had already mounted and zeroed a Nikon ProStaff 3-9X40 scope on the rifle. I don't think I ever shot that rifle with just the iron sights.

BTW that Ruger wasn't grouping like a shotgun or anything. He was picking spots on the target to shoot too. It was a long muddy walk across a field to put up a target so we only put up this one and the one you see behind it. We were out on the farm and we weren't exactly set up for bench shooting. We turned to plinking after shooting that second target actually. I don't remember if my friend was even using a scope. I think he was but that's been a while back now. I don't really shoot many targets with that rifle BTW. It's a hunting rifle that fires to the same spot when it's cold or warm which is crucial for a good hunting rifle IMO.



At any rate people can blast Remlins all day if they want. I like the ones I've bought since the buyout.

Last edited by Cee Zee; December 8, 2014 at 06:36 PM.
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Old December 9, 2014, 11:34 PM   #13
Skylerbone
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The following is not meant to be offensive or to attack any previous response given, it is merely my take on the original post (my opinion).

Concerning weight; a 6 lb. rifle would be a true featherweight in any centerfire caliber. Consider the iconic Winchester Model 70 Featherweight chambered in 30-06 Springfield which tips the scales at 7 lbs. even. A field gun if ever there were one and within 2" of the Marlin's overall length as well. Certainly the 70 Featherweight would never be thought of as a bench huggers dream by any rifleman I know. I'd consider the XT-22 a great training rifle given its proportions. For deep woods carry there may be better suited rifles I agree but overall length would be my primary interest in choosing such a rifle rather than saving a half pound.

Lousy sights; no surprise that Marlin's most modestly priced rifle would come equipped with basic sights that lack the tunable precision of many aftermarket counterparts. Folks we're talking about an inexpensive rifle manufactured in the States, with all of the expenses that entails, having to compete in a market segment rife with bargains. As mentioned in the OP it comes pre tapped for scope usage and that is what many folks will opt to do without a care for the irons' usability.

A rough bolt; well that there just sucks! I take it from other reviews this particular issue is not typical of the XT nor is this the first mention of the problem. The why of spotty QC again comes down to economy and luckily the problem can be solved without much fuss with a bit of TLC and sandpaper. No, having to correct minor flaws will never be ideal but it shouldn't be an automatic deal breaker either. Check the bolt for unusual scratches, check the raceway for burrs then concentrate on trouble spots.

Yeah, I love my CZ too but it is not without trade-offs. Price wise it will set you back compared to the Marlin which is a compromise between quality and price. Don't believe in compromise? Buy something else and be happy. Personally I would fork over more money for a Marlin with better sights, a walnut stock and more substantial bolt with a beefier extractor but I'm guessing a large percentage of buyers choose based on price.

I've said my piece, for what it's worth and I'll add that for shooters, I feel Marlin makes one heck of an argument which makes them worth the several shortcomings mentioned.

Last edited by Skylerbone; December 10, 2014 at 10:11 AM.
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Old December 10, 2014, 07:08 AM   #14
Davek1977
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I think its rather funny when someone compares the "smoothness" of a rifle that's had hundreds if not thousands of rounds down the tube to the feel of a new rifle. Nearly every gun in my collection feels "smoother" with use than it did brand new.
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Old December 11, 2014, 04:37 PM   #15
Cee Zee
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Quote:
Yeah, I love my CZ too but it is not without trade-offs. Price wise it will set you back compared to the Marlin which is a compromise between quality and price.
I also love my CZ as evidenced by my name choice. But let's talk about a sticky bolt for a second. At first on my CZ 453, a rifle that costs almost 3 times what I paid for my XT ($180 vs. $500), the bolt would stick so bad I could not operate it at all. I would have to literally ram the bolt against the sticky section until it broke throurgh. It would do it opening and closing the bolt. I very nearly returned the rifle as a result. It also rusted in 3 different places for no apparent reason at all. They were just small spots and I fixed them quickly with a brush and some oil and the problem hasn't returned. And after a few thousand rounds the bolt issue cleared up also.

Rifles are subject to having problems. Even rifles that are considered to be among the best for the average joe. The CZ has a great reputation but mine had some fairly serious issues. I didn't mention that the beautiful walnut stock is ridiculously soft. A hard bump leaves a dent in the wood. And I'm not talking dropping it on a concrete block here. I'm talking banging it slightly against another rifle when putting it in the same. I can post photos for anyone interested. It isn't bad but it's certainly annoying. And it seems to have gotten better which makes no sense at all but I haven't gotten a new dent in years now. Maybe I'm just way more careful handling the rifle.

FWIW my CZ didn't come with cheap sights. It didn't come with sights at all. And the XT is the first Marlin rimfire that is drilled and tapped for a scope plus having a dovetail grove. And again my iron sights are pretty much perfect. Compared to my CZ my XT has been the model of perfection. Obviously it doesn't look as nice and it certainly isn't as accurate but it does look decent IMO and it does shoot pretty accurate as almost any Marlin rimfire owner will say about their rifles. Do I like it better than my CZ? Heck no. My CZ has settled into being a great rifle and the issues with rust and the bolt sticking are apparently gone for good. I'm not about to test the wood to see if it will dent easily now. It has too many dents already (maybe 3 of them).
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