Plinking season

July 25th, 2012

It’s mid summer and most people are busy with  planning or  enjoying thefamily vacation. I am no different. Hockey season is over and other thanfew free agent signings or non impressive roster moves the action hasslowed down to a crawl. That is why it’s called off season. There is noNRA conferences, Sporting Clays fundraisers or any hunting seasons.Summer is a time to enjoy having the kids off school and enjoy spendingthe little extra time we have with them. To take the opportunity andmaybe teach them new skills or improve the ones they already have. Wehave competition horses, they take up most of our time, but when we havethe chance  we also like to take our rimfire rifles and a pistol to honeour plinking skills amongst many other fun things to do in the summer.

Many times it’s just me and my daughter but on occasion we bring some ofher friends along. It is really important for young teenagers or kids ofany age to learn basic  firearm safety and have a lot of fun doing it.The firearms of choice are CZ 455 American,CZ 75 KADET and my newestaddition CZ 455 FS. These are all in .22 LR, the caliber of choice fortraining, plinking or just plain old fun shooting. It was not anaccident to acquire all of them in the same caliber. The purpose was tobe the most consistent with each firearm. I do enjoy the .22 LR as thebest teaching caliber. The cost is a main factor when you are trying toshoot as much as possible and enjoy it. Having said that I still wouldnot recommend buying the least expensive ammunition. The few centsdifference is not worth the negative impact it has on your guns. Wenever experience any failure to feed or misfires but I’m finding thecheapest rimfire ammo runs very dirty.

CZ 455 American. Very nice little rifle purchased with training andteaching in mind. Few months after purchasing this rimfire I saw anarticle(I don’t remember the magazine or the time of year) thatrecommended the rifles from CZ’s 455 line as great rifles for youth. Iwas very excited I made the right choice. Full disclosure here. I boughtthis rifle because I heard so many good things about it at a localFlorida gun shop. That was before becoming one of CZ’s spokesmen. I added not great but sufficient scope. The American has no iron sights.It took no time to sight the rifle in as it was a lot of fun even in themiddle of Wyoming winter. I was hitting bullseye off of the bench restin no time at all. I have to remind people I am not a professionalshooter or professional anything when it comes to guns and shooting. Ijust really like it and it is quickly becoming one of my favoritehobbies. The rifle has performed up to its standards for almost twoyears now. The more you shoot the smoother the action becomes. It is aperfect size for most people especially young shooters. It has a realgood feel and the adult shooters are impressed with its perfect balance.Another reason the rifle truly makes a statement is the wood stock. Onceeverybody finds out the price range they admit there is no competitionfor CZ’s 455 line of rifles.

CZ 455 FS. I consider myself a traditionalist and for that reason I wasvery anxious to get hold of the new full stock version of 455. It is abeautiful classic looking rifle. Quite the opposite from all the rimfire”black rifles” versions that are flooding the market these days. It isabout an inch longer than the American style. It fits me better. I am 6’4″ with long arms and still feel very comfortable shooting this rifle inevery position. It comes with iron sights (rear is adjustable). As myfriends said these sights really stand out to find your eye. It camewith test target and five shot magazine. It took minimal tweaking of therear sight and we were making sure the bullseye gets plenty of trafficat fifty yards. The one of the reasons behind the choice to have thisrifle is for the kids to have a quality rifle with iron sights. Today’soptics technology allows ANY shooter with basic rifle skills to reachout target far out. That is very good, but what is even better to haveshooter with GREAT skills shooting great rifles. This full stockManlicher style rifle gives me an opportunity to shoot up to 200 yardswithout optics and still work on my accuracy. The kids like the way thefull stock looks,  they don’t see enough uniqueness in today’s riflechoices. Uniqueness is important especially if it comes with quality.

To make a choice between these two rifles would be hard. I feel veryfortunate to have both. Many of you can too, the price point is morethan reasonable. The younger shooters probably prefer the scopedAmerican version but are very happy when they become better shooterswith iron sights only.  Little more challenging but important part ofthe learning process.

CZ 75 Kadet cal. 22 LR. For many of the shooters this is not a newpistol. Just a new caliber in a time proven package. The Kadet is a fullsize CZ 75. It was designed as a training  pistol and the results couldnot be any more perfect. I have yet to find a pistol shooter who aftershooting either 9mm or .40 cal CZ 75 will say they did not enjoy it. Nowyou have a pistol that has identical feel but is chambered in .22 LR. Iam writing this blog mostly for beginner shooters or parents who wanttheir children to start shooting. I did not want my daughter or  anybodyfor that matter to learn pistol shooting on some scaled down version ofa real pistol. The Kadet was the best choice. It quickly became thebusiest piece in my gun safe. We shoot it for practice and everyone elsewants to try it. I enjoy shooting it as much as anyone. There are dayswhen you want to shoot but you don’t feel like dealing with the recoil,paying attention to how many rounds you’ve gone through with your 9mm or.40 or you just want to fill up your pocket(my personal favorite is fullcoffee can of .22)  with few hundred rounds and practice until you aretired of practicing. That is when the Kadet is at its best. Nobody willfeel like they were shooting a pistol with no practical application.Some shooter already own CZ 75. There is an adapter available topurchase from CZ-USA to convert your 9 or .40 into .22 without buyingwhole new pistol at about half price of the pistol. It is a greatoption, you will always be shooting the same pistol but sometimes withmore economical ammunition.

I did not want to spend any time to describe CZ 75. There are manyreviews of these great semiautomatic pistols by much better writers andshooters than I. I wanted to give you my experiences with not only theKadet but other firearms in the CZ’s rimfire line. There is many more tochoose from,  for example the semiautomatic CZ 512 or brand new switchbarrel CZ 455 Evolution. As the interest in shooting sports increases sodoes the cost of ammunition. The rimfire ammo is still reasonable andhopefully will be for some time to come. I am a firm believer if youwant to get better you need to practice. The more you practice thebetter you get. The better you get more fun it will be. And always be safe.

Bobby Holik

Bobby Holik, Czech American NHL Legend teamed up with CZ-USA in 2011 to promote the CZ line of bolt action rifles, semi-automatic handguns and handcrafted shotguns. The ice hockey center began his U.S. career with the Hartford Whalers, won two Stanley Cups with the New Jersey Devils and went on to plan for New York Rangers and Atlanta Thrashers. In his 1,314 career NHL games, Holik scored 747 points (326 goals, 421 assists) and became of the the most productive Czech born players in the NHL.
Like his grandfather, Bobby treasures our outdoor heritage. At home on his ranch in Wyoming, Bobby understands our responsibility as custodians for the land and wildlife on a first hand basis.


CZ firearms are imported to United States exclusively by CZ-USA, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ceska Zbrojovka, a.s. Uhersky Brod (CZUB) of the Czech Republic whose history dates back to 1936. CZ firearms have been available through distribution channels in the US since 1991 through independent importers and in 1997 CZUB recognized the need to control its own destiny and established CZ-USA with its headquarters in Kansas City, KS. All distribution, sales, marketing, warranty and parts support operates from Kansas City location. In 2005 a great opportunity came to CZ-USA by acquiring Dan Wesson Firearms, traditional American manufacturer of premium 1911 style handguns and unique revolvers with interchangeable barrels.