Only one of my sons carried my interest in shooting. When he was of the maturity to handle it, I gave him his own .22 bolt action rifle... a Savage... and in an effort to make it a bit more special, I scoped it with a fine old Burris 2x7 optic I'd had for some years. It was, in fact, just about my favorite scope ever.
Now, many... many years in the future, the same boy is heading off to Marine boot in a few months. As part of that he's thinning his possessions down and putting things in storage. He dropped off a few boxes of shooting and reloading gear, with instructions to use what I want.
In the bottom of one of those boxes.... I found the old Burris scope, still with the Burris rimfire rings I'd bought to install it on his rifle.
I can't say if he recalls where he got that scope, or knew it was in the box... but it's mine again now and it means something to me all out of proportion to it's intrinsic value as a fine piece of firearms optics.
I considered mounting it on my own Savage rimfire, to replace the 6x scope already there. Then I had another thought.....
I own a CZ 452 trainer model rifle, and it's hands down the most accurate .22 I've ever had. With it's excellent trigger, extra long barrel, and crisply visible military style open sights, it's been a joy to shoot since the day I found it at a local gun shop.
One thing I've never done to the CZ was mount a scope on it. Not that I haven't thought about it, but the CZ family of rifles uses an oddly spaced groove on their receivers... different than the American standard. That means buying CZ rings, at twice the cost of regular decent rimfire rings. Forking over $75 for rings on a varmint rifle doesn't faze me, but paying that much for rimfire rifle rings rather chafes my old skinflint soul.
Well, 'Ol Carteach just had to try for myself, no matter what the instructions say. I spent a few moments setting up the Burris scope and rings, and then slid it onto the CZ 452 receiver groove. Snugging down the lock nuts by hand, it surely did slide around and appear too loose.
Not wanting to give in quite so I easy, the gunsmithing screwdriver with a proper standard bit was used, and the ring clamp base was snugged quite snuggly....
You can guess what happened then. The rings tightened up rather nicely on the receiver slot, and the scope appeared to be a perfect fit. Schweeeet!
Stapling a pie plate to a fence post way out in the back yard, sighting in proceeded to happen. The first shot landed two inches to the right, and 1/4 inch high. Moments later, and the next round cut the top edge of the hand drawn bullseye dot. The following shots from the five round magazine nibbled the hole slightly wider.
The scope fits the rifle, and they make a fine... fine... combination. All for moments invested in simply trying it for myself.
I expect to send a few hundred .22 bullets across the back yard now each week, more than I usually do, and I'll be thinking of my boy while I do it. He's come up to be a man now, and a good one at that. I can't claim credit for how he turned out... all that came from inside him on his own.
Follows an image of the back yard... and someplace in there is a set of swinging steel targets, each just a few inches wide. It's time for me to brush up on my finer rifle skills, and see I can still ring the steel like I used to.
Eulogy - Here's the eulogy I gave for my Mom at her memorial service Saturday: We are here to celebrate the life of Betty Hill Baker, born Betty Lou Hill, March 14...
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